Qushayri : The Best Act of Worship

The 11th c. Sufi Abd-al Karim al-Qushayri here gives a brief, very subtle indication of the essential nature of breath in Sufi practice, and of the seeker’s responsibility to care for it.

They said: ‘The best act of worship is to count your breaths with Allah, Most Praised and Most High.” They said: “God created the hearts and made them mines of recognition. He created the heart-secrets and made them the places of the affirmation of unity. Every breath that arrives upon the carpet of need without the guidance of recognition and the sign of unity is dead, and its master will be called to account for it.”

Translation Michael A. Sells

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