Sufism: Doctrines and Practices

Subject 110-484 (2008)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2008.Search for this in the current handbookSearch for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.500
Level: Undergraduate
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2008.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: To be advised
Total Time Commitment: .
Prerequisites: Admission to the Postgraduate Diploma (Islamic Studies) or permission of the subject coordinator
Corequisites: .
Recommended Background Knowledge: .
Non Allowed Subjects: .
Core Participation Requirements: .


Dr M Kamal
Subject Overview:

This subject will explore the development of sufism from the point of view of various sufi schools, looking at their doctrines and practices, and will also study the rise of tariqahs. Selected key sufi texts, for example, by Rabi'a al-'Adawiya, Junayd, al-Muhasibi, al-Hujwiri, al-Hallaj, Abu Yazid al-Bistami, al-Sarraj, al-Qushayri will be read. This broad approach to the literature will continue with al-Ghazali, Ibn al-Arabi, al-Rumi, Suhrawardi, Jami, Mahmud Shabistai, Ahmad Sirhandi and Shah Walliullah. Continuing emphases will be on identifying features of sufi schools, the prominence of various tariqahs, the influence of sufism on Muslim society in general, and the revival of sufism in the modern period. A significant aspect to be explored will be the tension between sufism and orthodoxy, and the role of al-Ghazali in bringing sufism into the orthodox mainstream.

Assessment: An essay of 5000 words (100%) due at the end of semester
Prescribed Texts: A collection of texts from primary and secondary sources will be provided by the Institute
Recommended Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • understand the place of primary texts within widely divergent cultural contexts;

  • develop the capacity for rigorous and independent thinking;

  • communicate complex ideas in reasoned and structured written form.


Previously available as 110-560 Sufism: Doctrines and Practices. Students who have completed 110-560 are not eligible to enrol in this subject.

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