Journal of Islamic Studies 32 (1):1-26 (2021)

One of the central claims of early Sufis was the harmony of the Sufi path with the sunna of the Prophet Muḥammad. It remains to be explored, however, how early Sufis related to the sunna as an authoritative model. Focusing on the writings of al-Junayd al-Baghdādī, in particular the understudied Adab al-Muftaqir ilā Allāh, this article argues that al-Junayd sought to resolve a tension between anti-ascetic aspects of the sunna and the ascetic practices undertaken by Sufis. By attributing appeals to anti-ascetic ḥadīths to the influence of the lower-soul, al-Junayd made room for Sufis to undertake practices, including celibacy, that ran counter to the widely accepted sense of sayings of the Prophet. In so doing, he intervened in ongoing discussions concerning the value of asceticism and sexual abstinence. Al-Junayd’s writings reveal a nuanced approach to the sunna, whereby Sufis must identify those aspects of the sunna that would help rather than hinder their spiritual path. His writings thus take us beyond the affirmation that early Sufis upheld the law and sunna and allow us to see how Sufis wrestled with the example of the Prophet and the meaning of his life and words for their path to God.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1093/jis/etaa051
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 57,156
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Al-Fana' and Al-Baqa' in the Work of Abu Al-Qasim Al-Junayd Al-Baghdadi.David Ludwig Martin - 1984 - Dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles
Bewilderment in Sufism.Majīd Sādeqī & Razeeh Oroji - 2006 - Journal of Philosophical Theological Research 7 (28):31-63.
Highlighting the Importance of Women Sufis in Sindh.Dr Seema Manzoor & Nasreen Aslam Shah - 2018 - Pakistan Journal of Gender Studies 17 (1):219-251.
Highlighting the Importance of Women Sufis in Sindh.Seema Manzoor & Nasreen Aslam Shah - 2018 - Pakistan Journal of Gender Studies 17 (1):219-251.
Modern Liberalism, Female Circumcision, and the Rationality of Traditions.Jeffrey P. Bishop - 2004 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 29 (4):473 – 497.
KNOWLEDGE IN THE MAIN SOURCES OF THE PHILOSOPHY OF SUFISM IN THE PRE-GHAZZĀLĪ PERIOD.Emrah Kaya - 2020 - Dinbilimleri Akademik Arastirma Dergisi 2 (20):1403-1427.


Added to PP index

Total views
1 ( #1,461,020 of 2,411,736 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #539,061 of 2,411,736 )

How can I increase my downloads?


Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.

My notes