Via Tecta (Sacred Way)

From The Backcover Of The Treatises Of Ihvan-i Safa

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Translation: Nalan Özkan Lecerf

It is narrated that a philosopher from the Ihvan-i Safa group said the following: “Religion is concerned with the treatment of the sick, philosophy on the treatment of healthy people. The prophets treat the sick so that their illness does not worsen, and that they even heal completely. Philosophers, on the other hand, protect the health of healthy people in order to prevent any disease. “

İhvân-ı Safâ is the name of a group that emerged in the tenth century. Writing 52 encyclopedia-style treatises in a poetic language, they examine many topics from mathematics to music, from philosophy to astronomy, and from magic to love.

In a period of social and intellectual splitting in Islamic history, they strive to purify the heart and raise the human being under the guidance of the mind. According to them, one should not be enemies of any science, and not avoid any book. They emphasize tolerance towards other thoughts and beliefs.

There are different theories and rumors about who they are. The aureole of mystery around them has not been lifted for a thousand years. As the second of the three “secret imams” allegedly wrote the treatises, there are also those who attribute the Ihvân-ı Safâ to different structures from the Ismailis to the Nusayris and Durzis. It is known that, by the order of the Abbasid caliph in 1050, the treatises of İhvânı Safa (along with the works of Ibni Sina) were collected from all libraries and burned. However, the Andalusian philosopher Müslim saves the treatises from extinction by collecting them during his travel to the East.

 “(These) treatises are gloss, healing, radiance and light. Even if they could not be medicine, it is like a disease. If it cannot heal, it will make sick; if it doesn’t improve, it will create disorder; If it does not make achieve salvation, it will destroy. It treats; but sometimes it can make sick. It both kills and resurrects. “

Finally the treatises were translated into Turkish and published in five volumes. This work, which has been wandering through a wide cultural and intellectual geography from East to West for a thousand years, with first its breath and later its ghost, now awaits to be read and to take its place again in purified hearts.

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