This book, Manâzil as-Sâ’ireen, is a masterpiece of taṣawwuf written by Imam Abu Ismâ‘eel ‘Abdullâh ibn Muhammad ibn ‘Ali al-Anṣâri al-Harawi, one of the greatest Sufi masters of all times. The sheikh was Hanbali in his fiqh and Athari (scripturalist) in his creed. This makes it easier to decipher the symbolism of his statements: a result of the book’s brevity and the sheikh’s inclination toward linguistic finesse. I provide detailed footnotes for clarification. While I consulted many commentaries on Manâzil, including the rather brief commentaries by Imams al-Lakhmi and al-Munâwi, I owe most of my understanding of it to the instruction of my teachers and to Madârij as-Sâlikeen, another masterpiece written by Imam Ibn al-Qayyim, the erudite scholar who embodied the loving yet critical approach to the great legacy of Islamic spirituality.
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