The Divine Flood: Ibrahim Niasse and the Roots of a Twentieth-Century Sufi Revival by Rudiger SeesemannThe Divine Flood: Ibrahim Niasse and the Roots of a Twentieth-Century Sufi Revival by Rudiger Seesemann

The Divine Flood: Ibrahim Niasse and the Roots of a Twentieth-Century Sufi Revival

byRudiger Seesemann

Hardcover | August 15, 2011

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Until recently, academic studies of Sufism have largely ignored the multiple ways in which Islamic mystical ideas and practices have developed in the modern period. For many specialists, Sufism was "on the way out" and not compatible with modernity. The present study of a twentieth-centurySufi revival in West Africa offers critical corrections to this misconception. Seesemann's work revolves around the emergence and spread of the "Community of the Divine Flood," established in 1929 by Ibrahim Niasse, a leader of the Tijaniyya Sufi order from Senegal. Based on a wide variety of written sources and encounters with leaders and ordinary members of the movement, the book analyzes the teachings and practices of this community, most notably those concerned with mystical knowledge of God. It presents a vivid and intimate portrait of the community'sformation in Senegal and its subsequent transformation into a veritable transnational movement in West Africa and beyond. Drawing on letters, poetry, hagiography, and testimonies of opponents of the movement, the book traces Niasse's spectacular ascension as the widely acclaimed "Supreme Saint of His Era" and shows how the various stages of his career intersect with the development of his mystical teachings. Seesemannmakes a compelling case for studying Sufis and their literary production in their social and historical contexts, throwing light on a little known chapter of the intellectual and social history of Islam.
Rudiger Seesemann teaches in the Department of Religious Studies at Northwestern University and specializes in the study of Islam in Africa. He has done fieldwork in various West and East African countries and has published extensively on Sufism, Islam and politics, Islamism, Islamic education, as well as theories and practices of Isla...
Title:The Divine Flood: Ibrahim Niasse and the Roots of a Twentieth-Century Sufi RevivalFormat:HardcoverDimensions:352 pages, 6.42 × 9.41 × 1.18 inPublished:August 15, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195384326

ISBN - 13:9780195384321


Table of Contents

Prologue: "A Flood Shall Come Upon My Companions"Introduction: Studying Sufism in ContextPerceptions and Interpreters of Sufism - Islam and Africa - Sufism in Context - The Setting - Scope and Structure of the Book1. Beginnings: Ibrahim Niasse and the Advent of the FloodBirth, Childhood, and Adolescence - Early Career - Fayda - A Short History of the Terminology - Niasse as Bringer of the Flood - Reception and Resonance2. Spiritual Training: The Way to Mystical KnowledgeTarbiya: An Overview - Spiritual Energy and the Mystical State - Justifying tarbiya - The Three Stations of Religion - Annihilation - The Special Litanies - "The Cup Makes its Round"3. Seeing God: The Nascent CommunityInternal Tensions - Discord in Leona - Hijra to Medina - New Attacks - The Rejoinders - Visions and Ecstatic Utterances4. Crossing Borders: Expansion in Senegal and BeyondConsolidation in Senegal - The Supreme Saint - Spiritual Authority and Social Inequalities - Passage to Mauritania - Redrawing Gender Boundarie5. "The Supreme Saint of His Time": A Prophecy FulfilledConsequential Encounters - First Visit to Kano - The Conakry Trip - Reception of "The Conakry Trip" - Returning to Kano and the HijazEpilogue: After the FloodNiasse's Legacy - Patterns of Conflict and ExpansionGlossarySources and BibliographyArchival Sources - Interviews Cited - Writings by Ibrahim Niasse - Primary Sources in Arabic and African Languages - Secondary Literature