Towards the Summit of Reality
A major study of the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys, focusing on their historical, doctrinal and literary background and on Bahá’u’lláh’s revision of Sufi concepts in the light of the teachings of His new Revelation.
During his sojourn in Sulaymaniyah in the 1850s Bahá’u’lláh came into contact with eminent Sufi leaders. In the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys, epistles revealed for two of them, He sets forth the foundations of a renewed spiritual path. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá described the Seven Valleys as ‘a guide for human conduct’.
This major study focuses on the historical, doctrinal and literary background of the Seven Valley and the Four Valleys, and on Bahá’u’lláh’s revision of Sufi concepts in the light of the teachings of His new Revelation.
Part One explains aspects of Sufi doctrine important for an understanding of Bahá’u’lláh’s two epistles.
Part Two looks at literary works by Sufi saints, philosophers and poets quoted by Bahá’u’lláh, provides background to the stories and legends mentioned, and comments on aspects of Bahá’u’lláh’s allegorical language.
Part Three offers a concise analysis of philosophical and theological themes touched on, comparing Sufi doctrine with the explanations given by Bahá’u’lláh both in the epistles and in later writings.
Part Four addresses the mystical paths described in the two epistles, with the intention of encouraging personal insights. ‘The Bahá’í Faith is essentially mystic in character,’ writes Shoghi Effendi. ‘Its chief goal is the development of the individual and society, through the acquisition of spiritual virtues and powers.’
Comprehensive lists of quotations in the Seven Valleys and the Four Valleys from the Qur’án and the Traditions are given in the Appendices.
Author: Julio Savi.
Format: Softcover book, 592 pages, 17 x 24 cm.
Publisher: George Ronald Publisher, 2008.