I am delighted to announce the publication of another edition of my English translation of “Fifteen Letters (Khamsata ʿAshara Maktūban)” and commentary. The book is by the renowned Shaikh ‘Abd Al-Qadir Al-Jilani. This edition was published by the Malaysian publisher the Islamic Book Trust.
Shaikh ʿAbd al-Qādir al-Jilānī is arguably the greatest figure in the history of Sufism. His teachings have attracted millions to Islam and helped countless Muslims understand the spiritual journey that this great religion represents.
The current work consists of fifteen short letters in which the Shaikh describes spiritual experiences and knowledge that are attained through striving against one’s base desires and committed devotion to Allah. They are written in a highly mystical language, using a peculiar style whereby each sentence or group of sentences is followed by a related Qur’anic text. In effect, the letters represent a Sufi experiential interpretation of the quoted Qur’anic verses. While small in size, this exceptionally charming and poetically beautiful work is immensely profound.
This translation of the book is based on three manuscripts. The first is in King Saud University in Saudi Arabia, the second is in the Bodleian Library at Oxford University, UK, and the third is kept in the Special Collections Library at Michigan University, USA. The translator, who has previously co-translated into English Shaikh ʿAbd al-Qādir’s “Purification of the Mind (Jilā’ Al-Khāṭir), has also add a commentary.