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Ibn Arabi

The Teacher

Ibn 'Arabi was above all the disciple of Khidr {an invisible master}... such a relationship with a hidden spiritual master lends the disciple an essentially "transhistorical" dimension and presupposes an ability to experience events which are enacted in a reality other than the physical reality of daily life, events which spontaneously transmute themselves into symbols.

Khidr is experienced simultaneously as a person and as an archetype... To have him as a master and initiand is to be obliged to be what he himself is. Khidr is the master of all those who are masterless, because he shows all those whose master he is how to be what he himself is: he who has attained the Spring of Life... he who has attained the mystic, esoteric truth which dominates the Law, and frees us from the literal religion. Khidr is the master of all these, because he shows each one how to attain the spiritual state which he himself has attained and which he typifies...

Indeed, Khidr's "guidance" does not consist in leading all his disciples uniformly to the same goal, to one theophany identical for all, in the manner of a theologian propagating his dogma. He leads each disciple to his own theophany, the theophany of which he personally is the witness, because that theophany corresponds to his "inner heaven," to the form of his own being, to his eternal individuality , in other words, to what Abu Yazid Bastami calls the "part allotted" to each of the Spirituals and which, in Ibn 'Arabi's words, is that one of the divine Names which is invested in him, the name by which he knows his God and by which His God knows him... In Semnani's words, we should say that the Khidr's mission consists in enabling you to attain to the "Khidr of your being," for it is in this inner depth... that springs the Water of Life at the foot of the mystic Sinai...

He ... who is the disciple of Khidr possesses sufficient inner strength to seek freely the teaching of all masters. Of this the biography of Ibn 'Arabi, who frequented all the masters of his day and welcomed their teachings, offers living proof.

Ibn `Arabi was born in southeastern Spain in 1165 C.E.
In addition to being a mystic, he was also a theologian.

Mysticism in World Religions

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