Dispelling Shaytan (Wétiko) – Part 1

A'udhu billahi minash shaitan ir rajim
أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم
I seek shelter in Allah from the accursed Satan

"Ultimately, humility is the basis for democracy, just as arrogance is the basis for authoritarianism." ~ Jack D Forbes

What is Wétiko? What are the Shaytan? Who is Iblis?

Wétiko is a word from North American Native – Cree – origin. To the Cree, and most Native North Americans, greed was a serious psychological malfunction. The Cree called this malfunction Wétiko. The phrase and collective sickening spirit it describes was first brought to wider public attention by Jack D. Forbes, a Native American healer, scholar and political activist.

Continue reading

Flowers & Bees

Be like the Bees – On the Natural Care of Bees

“The believer is like a bee, feeds upon the goodness, relieves a burden of goodness (honey), lands upon a branch softly so as not to break it and when falling into the water does not pollute it.” ~ Saying by Mohammed (as)

"The Messenger of Allah said: “By the One in whose hand is the soul of Muhammad, the believer is like a bee which eats that which is pure and wholesome and lays that which is pure and wholesome. When it lands on something it does not break or ruin it.”

The bee only eats from flowers which are tayyib (pure and wholesome). It is not attracted to repulsive things, unlike other insects. Likewise the believer only eats that which is pure and wholesome.

Continue reading

Birds in the Sun, by Roya Azal

Esoteric Quarterly & Art Work for Hoger Institut, Belgium

“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
and rightdoing there is a field.
I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass
the world is too full to talk about.” ~
Dschalāl ad-Dīn ar-Rūmī

Autumn (2017) – I feel honored to be the featured artist for Esoteric Quarterly, an independent, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the trans-disciplinary investigation of the esoteric spiritual tradition.Continue reading

Islamic Garden, Emma Clark

Emma Clark: The Art of the Islamic Garden, Book Review

"Books are the gardens of scholars." ~ Ali ibn Talib (as)

It is Autumn, 2017. This past summer I exhibited some art work in a garden in Berlin as part of an art festival and studied the culture and history of the Islamic garden. The Berlin garden was pretty yet somewhat chaotic (so Berlin!) and I longed for the calm composition, clarity and artistic refinement of the real thing.

Continue reading

Two Blue Peonies, Art by Roya Azal

The Peonie: Queen of Islamic Floral Art

"During the night the Peonie spends medicine and healing, during the day the beautiful “Rose with no thorns” is protected by a jealous bird."

The Peonie (Paeonia officinalis) is known in phytology lore as “Fuga Demonica” – a repellent against bad energies and demons. It is a medical rose that came back to medieval Europe via the Islamic world from China (who imported it - via Arab, Persian and Syrian traders - originally from ancient Greece). The Peonie is a very stately flowering bush with large, lush dark pink, purple and rose tinted blooms. She is a wonderful floral gift for women.

Continue reading

God’s Greatest Name ~ Ism Allah Al-A’zam

“The symbol you see in the logo of this blog is the graphic symbol of the Greatest Name of God  (ism allah al-a’zam), also known as the Seal of Solomon (khitam sulayman): a symbol which from quite early on plays a major part in the history of Islamic esotericism, especially in magic and the occult (…) It derives from a poem attributed to the first Shi’ite Imam ‘Ali (as). * “

Continue reading

Forest with Arabeske

Learning from Khidr and Trees – My Life in the Forests

"You think you are a small entity, but within you is enfolded the entire Universe" - Ali ibn Talib (as)

"It is God who splits open the seed and the fruit stone. He brings out the living from the dead, and the dead from the living." ~ Quran, Surat 6:100

One of the great blessings in my life are my encounters with Al-Khidr, the green spirit (Khiḍr resembles the word “green” in Arabic, though others give other etymologies for the name). One afternoon in England - in a park with a small forest - I encounterd a bright green light (that's Clorophyl) in the moss and ever since I follow this light and began a conversation with trees and everything that grows. With time I learned more about the vast interconnected natural networks that surround us and I began to venture deeper into communicating and seeking to learn from them.

Continue reading

Bird Praising God

Re-Framing Psychosis and the Psychotic Muslim

“So the first step in working with the psychotic individual is to get to know the person’s psychosis – begin to understand the person’s reifications. There is ALWAYS method to the madness.”

Our mental health “issues” deserve to be treated with respect and dignity – our issues relate to our untold stories, our pain our persecution and our ancestral and present-day experiences. There is no dignity in “tricking” those who got stories to tell. I am hence not supporting to “trick” the Jinn, as Jinns are in my book, the Quran and some other books too, sacred story tellers about our sadness, madness, condemption and redemption. Almost all mental ailments require engagement, not supression. And last but not least: Psychiatric medication can be extremely debilitating and can damage our brain, our metabolism, our natural bio-energy flow and pur subtle bodies.

Continue reading