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The Source of Sufism  

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The Source of Sufism
The common premise is that “Sufism” is an Islamic group practicing a form of mysticism that originated in Persia.
As the book progresses, we will find that “Sufism” has nothing to do with Islam or Persia, and everything to do with the quiet people of Ancient and Baladi Egypt.
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2. The claim of a Persian origin of “Sufism” is also wrong. The Persians themselves refer to Egypt as the source of “Sufism”. For example:
a. The Egyptian Dhu ‘l-Nun (died in 860 CE) is recognized in all Islamized Sufi references as the spiritual source of “Sufism”, who prepared the way for the presently known form of Islamized Sufism. Sufis claim him for their own, as a leader and the originator of important concepts, such as the mystic’s direct knowledge (gnosis) of God and the stations and states of the spiritual Path. Dhu ‘l-Nun was knowledgeable of the Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs. A number of short treatises are attributed to him, which deal with alchemy, magic, and medicine.
b. Thoth (Tehuti), the Ancient Egyptian neter (god), is recognized by all early (and later) Sufi writers as the ancient model of alchemy, mysticism, and all related subjects.
The well known Sufi writer, Idries Shah, who was an Iranian/Persian himself, admits the role of Egypt via Thoth and Dhu’I-Nun on Sufism and alchemy as follows:
". . . alchemical lore came from Egypt direct from the writings of Thoth . . . According to Sufi tradition the lore was transmitted through Dhu’i-Nun the Egyptian, the King or Lord of the Fish, one of the most famous of classical Sufi teachers." [The Sufis, 1964]
Thoth’s name appears among the ancient masters of what is now called the Way of the Sufis. In other words, both the Sufis and the alchemists recognize Tehuti as the foundation of their knowledge.
Idries Shah also makes a direct reference to the Spanish-Arab historian, Said of Toledo (died in 1069), who gives this tradition of the Ancient Egyptian Thoth (aka Hermes):
"Sages affirm that all antediluvian sciences originate with the Egyptian Hermes [Thoth], in Upper Egypt. The Jews call him Enoch and the Moslems Idris. He was the first who spoke of the material of the superior world and of planetary movements . . . Medicine and poetry were his functions . . . [as well as] the sciences, including alchemy and magic." [Cf. Asin Palacios, Ibn Masarra, p. 13]
[From Egyptian Mystics : Seekers of The Way, 2nd edition by Moustafa Gadalla]