Kitab al-Majmu

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Kitab al-Majmu‘ (Arabic: كتاب المجموع‎ "The Book of the Collection") is a book which is claimed by some Sunni Muslims and former Alawites to be the main source of teaching of the ‘Alawi sect of Islam.[1] They claim the book is not openly published and instead is passed down from initiated Master to Apprentice; however, the book has been published by Western scholars, and both the original Arabic and French translation are available on the Internet Archive.[2] The Alawis, however, reject this book as baseless and state that their main source of teaching is Nahj al-Balagha.[3] According to Matti Moosa:[4]

Kitab al-Majmu contains sixteen suras (chapters) incorporated by Sulayman al-Adani in his Kitab al-Bakura... Kitab al-Majmu was published with a French translation by René Dussaud in his Histoire et Religion des Nosairis, 161-98. The Arabic text of the same is found in Abu Musa al-Hariri's al-Alawiyyun al-Alawiyya (Dubai: Dar al-Itisam, 1980), 145-74.

An English translation by Edward E. Salisbury was published in Journal of the American Oriental Society in 1866.[5]

The man who revealed the alleged book was Sulayman al-Adani, an Alawite convert to Christianity.[6]

It is also known as al-Dustoor, and has been attributed to an 11th-century Alawite missionary, al-Maymoun al-Tabarani.[7]

Yaron Friedman suggests that Kitab al-Majmu was influenced by Jewish esoteric traditions found in the Sefer Yetzirah; Friedman in particular points to the similarity of the texts in their letter mysticism, comparing Sefer Yetzirah's "great secret" (sod gadol) of aleph-mem-shīn to Kitab al-Majmu's secret (sirr) of ʿayn-mīm-sīn.[8]

Contemporary Alawis insist that the Kitab al-Majmu is fabricated, some even suggesting that it is a forgery created by 19th century Christian missionaries.[9]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Glassé, Cyril. 2008. The New Encyclopedia of Islam. Walnut Creek CA: AltaMira Press, p.37
  2. ^ "Histoire et religion des Nosairîs". archive.org.
  3. ^ Sirat Al Shaikh Muhammad ibn Nusayr page 1
  4. ^ Matti Moosa, Extremist Shiites: The Ghulat Sects, Syracuse University Press, 1987, p. 503, note 25
  5. ^ Salisbury, Edward E. (1866). "Notice of كتاب الباكورة السليمانية فى كشف اسرار الديانة النصرية تأليف سليمان افندى الاذنى. The Book of Sulaimân's First Ripe Fruit, Disclosing the Mysteries of the Nusairian Religion". Journal of the American Oriental Society. 8: 227–308. doi:10.2307/592241. JSTOR 592241.
  6. ^ Matti Moosa (1987). Extremist Shiites: The Ghulat Sects. Syracuse University Press. p. 260. ISBN 9780815624110.
  7. ^ Nibras Kazimi (1 September 2013). Syria through Jihadist Eyes: A Perfect Enemy. Hoover Press. p. 88. ISBN 978-0-8179-1076-1.
  8. ^ Yaron Friedman (2010). The Nuṣayrī-ʻAlawīs: An Introduction to the Religion, History, and Identity of the Leading Minority in Syria. BRILL. p. 96. ISBN 90-04-17892-9.
  9. ^ Firro, Kais M. (2005). "The Ἁlawīs in Modern Syria: From Nuṣayrīya to Islam via Ἁlawīya". Der Islam. 82 (1): 1–31. doi:10.1515/islm.2005.82.1.1. ISSN 0021-1818.