Upcoming Worldwide Events and Symposiums
While the coronavirus pandemic is causing the postponement of symposia and seminars, there has been a flourishing of online lectures and courses.
• “The Hidden Treasure”
introductory online seminars by the Ibn Arabi Interreligious Research Initiative (IAI) at Monash University, Australia.
• Online courses
such as “In each thing He has a sign”, developed by MIAS Education
Online talks in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian
Ibn ‘Arabi’s Creative Imagination
Crossing Borders to Discover the Meaning of Being Human
28th October 2021
This event will explore how Ibn ‘Arabi’s creative imagination crosses philosophical, poetic, linguistic and artistic borders, and how his ideas continue to inspire contemporary poetry, film, art and music to this day. It will comprise short talks by Cecilia Twinch and Rim Feriani, poetry readings, a round-table discussion, and an opportunity for questions.
This Zoom seminar is jointly hosted by Language Acts and Worldmaking and the Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society. It will take place on Thursday, 28th October 2021, from 17:00-19:45 BST (London time).
There is no charge for attendance, but it will be necessary to register in advance. You can register here: ibn-arabi-creative-imagination-tickets-160427700571
November 2021 | Online seminars, Autumn series
Understanding Ibn ‘Arabi
November 6th – November 27th
Our autumn online seminars are presented by the Institute for Ibn ‘Arabi Studies (based at the Kerim Foundation) and the Institute for Sufi Studies at Üsküdar University, in collaboration with the Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society.
The series will consist of four seminars on consecutive Saturdays. The first three seminars will introduce different perspectives on the theme “Understanding Ibn ‘Arabi”. The final session will be a panel discussion, bringing the speakers together to discuss and develop the theme. All sessions will include an opportunity for questions so that attendees can fully participate.
6th November, 2021
Seminar One: 17.00 GMT (London)
Mahmud Erol Kılıç: ‘Ahmad Avni Bey’s Understanding of Ibn ‘Arabi’
13th November, 2021
Seminar Two: 17.00 GMT
Laila Khalifa: ‘Ibn ‘Arabi in Spiritual Fiqh and Gnostic Knowledge’
20th November, 2021
Seminar Three: 17.00 GMT
Mukhtar Ali: ‘Dawud al-Qaysari’s Muqaddima: The Essential Introduction to Ibn ‘Arabi’
27th November, 2021
Seminar Four: 17.00 GMT
A panel discussion between the speakers of themes arising during the seminars
chaired by Mahmud Erol Kılıç
The moderator of the series will be Hasan Kerim Güç
The event will be run on the Zoom Webinar platform. Seminars 1 and 3 will be given in English. Seminar 2 will be given in Arabic. Simultaneous translation will be available for all seminars, and the plenary session, in English and Turkish. For those attendees not familiar with the ‘translation function’ in Zoom, guidance will be given.
This series is free of charge but registration will be required. Please click here to register via Eventbrite [/]. Registration closes 24 hours before each seminar
Speakers and Presentations
Mahmud Erol Kılıç is a Professor of Sufi Studies. His numerous books, articles and translations have focused on Ibn ‘Arabi and the Ibn ‘Arabi school of thought as well as Sufism in Anatolia. He has been the ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the Republic of Indonesia, and was the Secretary General of the Parliamentary Union of the OIC Member States (PUIC) based in Tehran. Prof. Kılıç currently serves as the Director General of the Research Center for Islamic History, Art and Culture. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society.
Mahmud Erol Kılıç writes: ‘Ahmed Avni Konuk (d. 1938) was a Sufi, musician, and composer with the masterful approach of applying his Sufi experience within the Mawlawi Sufi path to his work in the state postal service. Following a voluminous commentary on the Masnavi (considered one of the most comprehensive commentaries made in Turkish), he also wrote a commentary on Ibn ‘Arabi’s Fusus al-Hikam. This commentary serves as a key to Ibn ‘Arabi’s main ideas and concepts; the introduction in particular is almost a summary of the entire Akbari system of thought. What is even more interesting about Ahmed Avni Bey, however, is that his vision did not separate Mevlana and Ibn ‘Arabi, but rather explained one through reference to the other – an approach that brought together the two figures of Mevlana and Ibn ‘Arabi like pieces of a puzzle, to present a unified understanding of two traditions’.
Laila Khalifa (Ph.D) began her studies in social sciences and history at the University of Jordan in Amman. Later she pursued postgraduate research in Social Psychology at the University of Nottingham, UK in 1985. She was awarded her MA in Classical and Modern Islamic Thought at the Sorbonne in 1988. She has subsequently dedicated her research to the study of Ibn ‘Arabi’s doctrine and received her Ph.D. in 2000, in History and Civilisation at the L’École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales.
Here, under the supervision of Prof. Michel Chodkiewicz, she completed her dissertation: “Conquêtes, Illuminations, Tassawuf et Prophétie: La Futuwwa chez le Sheikh al- Akbar Muhammad Muhyi a-Din Ibn ’Arabi (1165-1240)”. (Conquest, Illumination, Sufism and Prophecy: The Futuwwa in Ibn ‘Arabi (1165-1240.) She continues her research into Ibn ‘Arabi’s metaphysical doctrine and participates in international symposiums. Laila Khalifa has published books and articles.
Laila Khalifa writes: ‘The writings of Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi are among the most important to have been written in the gnostic knowledge. Ibn ‘Arabi’s writings connect human civilization extending from Adam – peace be upon him – to Prophet Muhammad – may God bless him and grant him peace; in other words from the beginning of creation standing in the day of the covenant before God, to the day of return and finally standing before God, Glorious and Most High, and asking for intercession. Ibn ‘Arabi divulges the divine, spiritual, and legal secrets in the rulings in fiqh and shari’a that came with canonical language, supported by openings (fath), discoveries (kashf), and divine self-manifestation (al-tajalli al-ilahi). Specialists in this field agree on the importance of these books, as well as on the difficulty of reading them. In this seminar, I will elucidate some of the problematic issues as well as the essential points that need to be understood when it comes to the study of Ibn ‘Arabi’s school of thought, in the realm of gnostic knowledge and spiritual fiqh.’
Mukhtar H. Ali (Ph.D) (2007) University of California, Berkeley, is a Lecturer in Islamic Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He specializes in Sufism, Islamic philosophy and ethics, but his areas of interest also include Arabic and Persian literature, Qurʾanic studies and comparative religion. He is the author of Philosophical Sufism: An Introduction to the School of Ibn al-ʿArabi (Routledge, 2021) and The Horizons of Being: The Metaphysics of Ibn al-ʿArabi in the Muqaddimat al-Qayṣari (Brill, 2020).
He has translated some contemporary metaphysical texts, The New Creation (Sage Press, 2018) and The Law of Correspondence (Sage Press, 2021).
Mukhtar H. Ali writes: ‘This talk explores the writings of Dawud al-Qaysari (d. 751/1350), the preeminent commentator of Ibn ‘Arabi’s works. Qaysari’s introduction to his commentary on the Fusus al-Hikam – popularly known as the Muqaddimat al-Qaysari – is a masterpiece of Sufism that distills in clear and precise language Ibn ʿArabi’s entire metaphysical worldview. As such, it is a foundational, introductory text in the school of Ibn ʿArabi, elucidating the key doctrines of Philosophical Sufism: Being, the divine attributes, the universal worlds, the imaginal world, unveiling, creation and the microcosm, the perfect human, the origin and return of the spirit, prophethood and sainthood.’
Hasan Kerim Güç is a Ph.D. candidate at the Institute for Sufi Studies, Üsküdar University, Istanbul. His studies include Sufism and the thought, history and Islamic literature of the Ottoman period. He worked in Virginia, USA, in software engineering between 1999-2010. He is currently the Managing Director of Nefes Publishing (Nefes specialises in books on Islamic texts and Sufi studies. It also includes the Tuti imprint, which specialises in popular science).
He is a founding and board member of the Kerim Foundation and is the author of Ken’an Rifai’nin Dervişlik Anlayışı (Kenan Rifai’s Understanding of Dervish) (Nefes, 2020) and The Birds of Attar (Nefes, 2021). He has also published translations of philosophical classics.
August 2021 | Call for submissions
First MIAS Translation Prize Competition
Entries to be submitted by 1 September 2022
The Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society (MIAS) is pleased to announce its inaugural, triennial MIAS Translation Prize competition. Given the significant scholarly and lay interest in English translations of Sufi works in general and Ibn ‘Arabi’s writings in particular, it is hoped that this initiative will encourage greater engagement with the teachings of ‘the Greatest Master’ and his school. The Prize is being sponsored by the Ibn ‘Arabi Societies in the UK and the USA, by MIAS AP (Asia Pacific), the Monash University Ibn Arabi Interreligious Research Initiative (IAI), and by private donors.
For this first competition, we invite submissions on prose texts by Ibn ‘Arabi. For more information on these texts and an assessment of their authorship, see the MIAS catalogue of works by Ibn ‘Arabi: https://ibnarabisociety.org/wp-content/uploads/PDFs/catalogue-of-ibn-arabis-works.pdf
Entries should be in the form of original translations either of complete minor works, or of key sections or chapters from major works. Where possible, translations should be based on critically edited Arabic texts already in print. In cases where the text is still only in manuscript form, translations should be based on the best manuscripts (in such cases, if they wish to, translators can produce their own critical editions of Arabic texts alongside their submitted translations, although only translations will be evaluated for the competition).
Submissions should contain (1) a brief discussion introducing the text and its themes, and (2) a fully annotated English translation. It is expected that submissions will be in both Word and PDF formats and will be between 5000 and 8000 words (notes included), although this may vary. A model which applicants are encouraged to follow can be found here: https://ibnarabisociety.org/letter-to-imam-al-razi-mohammed-rustom/
The competition is open to all. Each entry will be evaluated for its textual fidelity, style, technical precision and readability by a panel of senior Ibn ‘Arabi specialists.
The winner will be awarded a cash prize of 3000 USD, and their translation will be published in the Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society (JMIAS), a leading peer-reviewed academic journal now in its fortieth year. Other submissions deemed by the prize selection committee to be outstanding may also be published in JMIAS.
Entries are due by 1 September 2022, with the winner to be announced on 1 November 2022.
For further details about the rules and regulations of this competition, and how to enter, please write to Professor Mohammed Rustom: email@example.com
September 2021 | Online talk
The Hidden Treasure Seminars
Ibn Arabi Interreligious Research Initiative (IAI) at Monash University, Australia
The last talk in the recent IAI Hidden Treasure series was delivered by Dr Eric Winkel, of the Muhyiddin Ibn Arabi Society, USA, on Saturday 4 September 2021. The title of his talk was: “‘I am a Buried Treasure, Concealed (in you):’ Ibn Arabi’s Role in the (our) Discovery of the Treasure Chest (in our chests)”.
Like other talks in this series between September 2020 and September 2021, the video and audio recording is available at https://www.monash.edu/arts/Ibn-Arabi-Interreligious-Research-Initiative/media [/]
A new series will start in 2022, and details will be posted here when available.
The Hidden Treasure online seminar series introduced Ibn Arabi, looking at his relevance to the contemporary world. It is organised by the Ibn Arabi Initiative (IAI) at Monash University. These seminars were open to the public and free, but it is necessary to register in advance.
2020 | Online talks
Online talks in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian
International Ibn Arabi Reading Circle 2020
In response to the period of confinement required by the pandemic, MIAS-Latina has organized video conferences under the title International Ibn Arabi Reading Circle 2020.
The sessions, lasting approximately an hour and a half, have taken place at 5:00 p.m. Madrid time, which is also convenient for American participants. They include an introduction (in Spanish, Italian or Portuguese), time for debate with the speaker, and time for open dialogue (in any of these three languages) among the attendees.
The first cycle of talks ran from April 22nd to July 26th, and covered a wide range of subjects. The second cycle of talks began on September 6th. The speakers include
- Alberto Ventura, October 4th (Cosenza, Italy), L’Epistola sull’Unificazione. Il tawhîd esoterico di Arslân di Damasco. Introduction: Demetrio Giordano.
- Antonio de Diego (Seville, Spain), October 18, Ibn Arabi y el sufismo contemporáneo. El caso de la tariqa Tijâniyya. Introduction: Paolo Urizzi.
Information about registration and details of all the previous talks can be found on the MIAS-Latina website: https://ibnarabisociety.es/index.php?pagina=34&lang=es [/]
See also the contribution by Pablo Beneito in June to the MIAS Blog: Reading Circles in MIAS Latina
2020 | About the online talks
Ibn ‘Arabi and The Geometry of Reality
This was a series of online talks organised by the Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society in the UK, with different speakers paying tribute to the work of Michel Chodkiewicz and Keith Critchlow, two Honorary Fellows, who passed away earlier this year.
These talks had the form of ‘webinars’, with a presentation of 30-40 minutes, followed by up to one hour’s discussion with participants.
The first series began on May 9th with a talk by Stephen Hirtenstein, entitled The Circle and the Compass, followed by Pablo Beneito (MIAS Latina) speaking on The Blessing-Prayer of Effusion (May 23rd), and Jane Carroll (MIAS USA) on The Point of the Compass (June 6th).
The second series of three talks saw Jane Clark speak on Structures of ‘two-ness’: equivalence, complementarity and inversion (June 20th), and Eric Winkel on The Encircled Alighting-places of the Quran (July 4th). The final talk in Series 2, The Symbolism of the Two Arcs: some reflections, by Paolo Urizzi, took place on Saturday July 18th.
The first talk in Series 3 was by Samer Akkach on The Geometry of Causality and Unfolding of Destiny, followed by The Perplexing Geometry of Being: Ibn ʿArabi’s Correlative Ontology and the Notion of thubūt (August 1st), by Gregory Vandamme, (August 15th), and The Alif – the One, the Many and the Beautiful, by Rim Feriani (August 29th)..
Series 4 had talks by Michele Petrone, The Dot and the Line: Akbarian views on time and the instant (September 12th); Alexander Knysh, Tasting, Drinking and Quenching Thirst: From Mystical Experience to Mystical Metaphysics (September 26th); and Gracia López Anguita, The Structure of the Universe as a Network (October 10th).
In Series 5, Cyrus Zargar spoke on The Ambiguities of Union: Exploring the Relationship between Perception and Reality (October 24th), Carlos Berbil on A Fresh Look at Ibn Sabʿīn: The Circular Scale of Transcendence and Mediation (November 7th), and finally, Luca Patrizi’s paper was entitled Thus Spoke Adam: The Suryāniyya Language in Islamic Esotericism (November 21st).
The final session of the series was in the form of a special round table gathering of speakers from the series, with invited guests. It took place on Saturday, 5th December 2020.
Videos of all the talks in Series 1 to Series 5 are now available in the Podcasts and Videos section of this website, and on the Society’s YouTube channel. These recordings include the talk, but not the questions and discussion that followed.
2020 | Symposium | Oxford, UK
Breath of Creation, Breath of Compassion
Organised by the Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi Society and SOAS School of Languages, Cultures and Religions, London
In view of the coronavirus pandemic currently affecting so many parts of the world, it is necessary to postpone this event, which was scheduled for 9th/10th May 2020. We will update this page when we have more information about the possibilities of a physical symposium.
- Professor James Morris (Boston College, USA)
- Dr. Kazuyo Murata (King’s College London, UK)
- Dr. Oludamini Ogunnaike (University of Virginia, USA)
- Dr. Dia Barghouti (Goldsmiths College, University of London, UK)
- Dr. Aydogan Kars (Monash University, Melbourne, Australia)
There are more than 110 Podcasts and more than 25 videos available here, and they are being added to regularly.