Sacred Web 34

To order this issue of Sacred Web and other back issues, click here.

Sacred Web 34

Sacred Web 34


Editorial: "Polish for the Heart"
by M. Ali Lakhani
The editorial reflects on the Hadith: "There is a polish for everything that taketh away rust; and the polish for the heart is the remembrance of God."     Read more...

Religion, Secularism and the Environment
by Seyyed Hossein Nasr
This is the text of Dr. Nasr's lecture on secularism and the influence of the modernist ethos on the environmental crisis. Dr. Nasr's lecture was delivered at the Ismaili Centre in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada, while he was attending the Sacred Web Conference in Vancouver in April 2014, to inaugurate the Ismaili Centre International Lecture Series. The lecture was the basis for an interview later broadcast by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's program, "Ideas".     Read more...

Living the Ethics of One's Faith: The Aga Khan's Integral Vision
by M. Ali Lakhani
"At a time when much of the Western world is struggling to come to terms with what some have portrayed as the civilizational threat of Islam to the West, it would do well to heed the compassionate and pluralistic message—and also example—of one of Islam's most quietly influential leaders." This essay draws extensively on the public speeches of His Highness Prince Shah Karim Al-Husseini, known as the Aga Khan, the hereditary spiritual leader of a vibrant branch of Shia Islam, and is a study of his integral vision of Islam as a Way of Life.     Read more...


Our "Share" in this World
by Mohammed Rustom
Referring to the Qur'anic verse "…and forget not your share in this world" [28:77], this paper is a reflection on the relationship between Faith (din) and the World (dunya). It probes the question of how one can be spiritually-rooted in a materialistically-focused world.Read more...

Overcoming the East-West Divide
by Ibrahim Kalin
Referring to the Qur'anic verse "To God, belongs east and west; wherever you turn, you will see the face of God. Behold, God is infinite, all-knowing" [2:115], this essay argues for a universalist outlook, rooted in principles that transcend "east-west" dichotomies.     Read more...

Aesthetics of Deification & Postmodern Deceptions: Reflections on Monasticism, the Icon & Beauty
by Hieromonk Silouan
This meditative piece treats the question of beauty in light of monasticism as an integration of the sacred, life and art. Drawing from the Philokalia the traditional understanding of the sacred connection between Truth, Goodness and Beauty, the essay proceeds to discuss the iconography of the soul, the roles of Grace and Intellect in the attainment of perfection, and the Christian understanding of the mystery of the Divine Embodiment in Incarnation and Icon. The essay concludes with an important description of postmodern deceptions that lead to the inverted iconography of idols.     Read more...

At the Source of Arin: Initiatic Chevalerie in the Orient and the Occident
by Nigel Jackson
The nature and quest of esoteric chivalry in the orient and occident are examined through key motifs of the 'Regal' aspects of Tradition in Islamic and Christian civilizations of the Middle Ages. Themes of Sufi Javanmardi/Futuwwah and Chevalerie in medieval Persia and Europe are explored, with reference to symbolic meditations upon Justice as the 'axial virtue', the tripartite initiatory paradigm in Indo-Iranian confraternities and guilds, and the contemplative vision of the encounter which unseals the veritable inner secret of the knightly way—the Angelophany of the 'Evanescent Youth' at the symbolic Centre. The enduring values of the chivalric ethos are seen to illuminate spiritual concerns of pressing relevance to our contemporary world.     Read more...

The Islamic Pilgrimage as Mirror and Realization of the Eschaton
by Ian Richard Netton
Professor Netton's essay examines how certain typological leitmotifs (textuality, memory, prophecy, reality, and finality) are embedded in Christianity and Islam. Drawing upon René Girard's mimetic theory as a theory of religion, he identifies five mimetic roots (imitation, memory, violence, scapegoat and sacrifice) and examines their treatment to explore the relationship between the Islamic hajj and the eschaton, illustrating how certain paradigmatic actions are remembered and repeated to mirror and realize their inner significance.     Read more...

Eros and Tradition: The Challenge of the Colorless Rainbow
by Mateus de Azevedo
"Is there a traditional view concerning sexuality? If so, how should one approach sexual love from the perspective of the universal and perennial wisdom? What are the substantive differences in approach between ordinary theology, or exoteric religion, and esoterism, concerning this topic?" The essay offers a critique, from the perennialist perspective, of homosexuality and its image of the Rainbow—which the author claims to be a "colorless rainbow."     Read more...

Finding Our Sacred Center in the Modern World: Interview with Laleh Bakhtiar
by Samuel Bendeck Sotillos
Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar is a renowned Sufi scholar, traditional psychologist, author and publisher. This interview was conducted on the occasion of the second Sacred Web Conference, where Dr. Bakhtiar was a speaker.     Read more...

Explanatory Note on Illustrations

Notes on Contributors


Designed by Samco Printers Ltd.