Baykan, Erdal
January 2008
Ekev Academic Review;Winter2008, Vol. 12 Issue 34, p93
Academic Journal
The making of civilization for a religion is very much dependent on the existence of Sages who developed a language of universality. By the same taken, it can be suggested that a given civilization owes its existence, as well as its dynamism and continuity, to such great personalities. Mevlânâ is a good example in that respect. Because Mevlânâ is one of the greatest men who have survived throughout the ages representing plurality and multiplicity of Islamic civilization he was born into and continue to be the one of the best known, if not the best known, sage in different cultural and religious territories. But despite the degree of his popularity, the concepts, definitions and descriptions he used or he developed within the Sûfi paradigm he belongs to have been widely misunderstood as in the case of reason. The popular maxim about the concept of reason in sûfi thought try to make us believe that the reason in Sûfism is categorically negated and Mevlânâ represents no exception in that regard. The purpose of this paper is to open to discussion this very maxim and suggest that the concept of reason in Mevlânâ as well as in Sûfi thought in general is not negated as popularly believed. Although it may seem to an ordinary mind a bit paradoxical, sûfi approach to reason, in fact, open up new horizons to reason by calling its limits into question. In other words, in Mevlânâ, and in Sûfism in general, reason is such an important concept that without its guidance Sûfi experience has no value on its own right. The paper will also bring into attention that the Sûfi teaching and that of Mevlânâ may offer to the problems in contemporary thoughts.


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