Sacred Web 21

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Sacred Web 21

Sacred Web 21


“A Single Principle”: On Faith and Pluralism

by M. Ali Lakhani
How is modern man to construct a legitimate foundation for orthodoxy, and how are the faith traditions of the modern world to find a pluralistic approach consistent with the Traditional view that “Truth is one”? The Editorial makes the case for the coexistence of pluralism and religious orthodoxy, based on a metaphysical pluralism grounded in a gnostic or visionary understanding of faith as spiritual Presence.     Read more ...

The Gnosis of Jacob Boehme
by Wolfgang Smith
This paper surveys the sophiology or doctrinal teachings of Jacob Boehme, and demonstrates their underpinning in a mystical vision or gnosis that is Biblical and informed by a particular Christology. The author argues that though Boehme may have spoken of the Kabbalah “more openly than the Zohar,” his orientation differs from the Kabbalah, but is complementary to it. Finally, it is argued that while Boehme’s metaphysical ground of Being, Ungrund, is non-dualistic in the Advaitic sense, yet his non-dualism is in a sense Trinitarian—with the Father begetting the Son in Eternal Nature.

The Void and the Godhead: The Shi’ite Agnosticism of Hamid ad-Din Al-Kirmani, Nasir-e Khusraw and the Buddhist Dialectics of Nagarjuna
by ‘Abd al-Hakeem Carney
In this article, the author seeks to compare the doctrines of Middle Way Buddhism with the theosophy of two of the most important Ismaili Muslim philosophers, Hamid ad-Din al-Kirmani and Nasir-e Khusraw. He first explores the doctrine of emptiness and then compares it to the doctrine of the Godhead in Ismailism, where God is seen to be a created entity brought into being from the Absolute Void of a Godhead devoid of Essence. Rather than positing the Ultimate Reality as being Pure Being, Ismaili mysticism posits a radical absence as being the source of all things, and therefore, embraces a doctrine similar to the Buddhist doctrine of emptiness. The article closes with a discussion of the nature of Imamah and its relationship to Middle Way conceptions of the Buddha.

Harmonious Echoes from the Past: An Esoteric Interpretation of Hang Tuah’s Journey to India
by Lalita Sinha
Hang Tuah is a legendary Malay hero who lived during the reign of Sultan Mansur Shah of the Sultanate of Malacca in the 15th century, and is the most renowned figure in Malay history. This article recounts a journey of Hang Tuah to India, focusing on the journey’s inner meaning and the pluralistic lessons that it contains for every human being struggling to accommodate the encounters with diversity that characterize the increasingly globalized modern world.

René Guénon: Traditional Sources and Contemporary Contexts
by Patrick Laude
This article delves into the relationship between the doctrinal content of Guénon’s output and the historical determinations that weighed upon its crystallization. The article first focuses upon Guénon’s relations with the three spiritual traditions that constitute the referential framework of his doctrine, namely Hinduism, Taoism, and Islam. The author considers the historical reasons for Guénon attaching himself principally to this triad in the intellectual context of the first quarter of the twentieth century. Analogically, moving onto the triad of traditional realities that were somewhat undervalued by Guénon—notably religion, mysticism, and magic—the author attempts to shed light on the circumstantial reasons that led Guénon to exclude these three terms from his doctrinal lexicon. The final section of the article consists in an evaluation of the degree to which Guénon’s historical situation, and the conditions tied to his cultural and personal experiences, might have contributed to his insistence on anonymity, secrecy, and the almost systematic devaluing of all that pertains to the sphere of the individual.

The Legend of the Tollhouses
by Jennifer Doane Upton
In the Eastern Orthodox Church there is a tradition, related to the Catholic doctrine of Purgatory, regarding the “aerial tollhouses” which the soul encounters after death. This article outlines the legend and its underlying metaphysical significance.

Book Reviews
L’Ecole à la Derive: L’Enseignement Actuel à la Lumière de la Tradition Universelle by Ghislain Chetan

reviewed by Fatima Jane Casewit

Science of the Cosmos, Science of the Soul:
The Pertinence of Islamic Cosmology in the Modern World
by William C. Chittick

reviewed by M. Ali Lakhani

My Mercy Encompasses All: The Koran’s Teachings on Compassion, Peace & Love
Gathered and Introduced by Reza Shah-Kazemi
Foreword by Wendell Berry

reviewed by M. Ali Lakhani

Remembering in a World of Forgetting: Thoughts on Tradition and Postmodernism by William Stoddart
Edited by Mateus Soares de Azevedo
and Alberto Vasconcellos Queiroz

reviewed by M. Ali Lakhani

Notes on Contributors


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