M. Ali Lakhani: The Timeless Relevance of Traditional Wisdom

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M. Ali Lakhani: The Timeless Relevance of Traditional Wisdom

More than ever, there is an urgent need to rediscover timeless and objective principles in order to confront the issues of our times. In this collection of remarkable essays, Lakhani summons us to rediscover the sacred worldview of Tradition, governed by truth, virtue, and beauty, as he addresses some of the most pressing issues today, including fundamentalism, gender and sexuality, religious diversity and pluralism, faith and science, and the problem of evil.

M. Ali Lakhani: The Timeless Relevance of Traditional WisdomM. Ali Lakhani graduated from Cambridge University before moving to Vancouver where he has practiced as a trial lawyer for 25 years. In 1998, he founded the traditionalist journal, Sacred Web, with the aim of identifying the first principles of traditional metaphysics and promoting their application to the contingent circumstances of modernity. The bi-annual journal has included contributions by many leading traditionalists. In the words of Professor Nasr, “Along with Sophia, Sacred Web is the most important journal…

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Persian literature was dominated by a sophisticated tradition of poetry

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A manuscript of Rumi's Masnavi dated1652–53. (Image: Bodleian Library, University of Oxford) A manuscript of Rumi’s Masnavi dated1652–53. (Image: Bodleian Library, University of Oxford)

Persian literature is dominated by a highly  sophisticated tradition of poetry dating to the tenth century. Persian poetry can generally be divided into two forms: the lyrical and the epic. The major lyrical forms are the qasida, ghazal, and rubai. The basic form of epic poetry is the masnavi.

The qasida, a long mono-rhyme (aa, ba, ca) similar to an ode, is mostly used as a speech or in praise of somebody as well as for secular or religious moralism. It consists of three parts – a prologue, the actual praise or tribute, and a final appeal to the patron. It was also used to praise of God and the Prophet. The chanted qasida is part of the religious tradition of Arabic and Persian–speaking Nizari Ismailis.

The ghazal, rhythmically similar to the qasida only…

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