A Soaring Minaret: Abu Bakr al-Wasiti and the Rise of Baghdadi Sufism
Sufi scholar Abu Bakr al-Wasiti (d. 320 AH/932 CE) was called a ‘soaring minaret’ for his cutting comments and keen theological insights. Wasiti’s life is little known today, but elements of his lost Quranic commentary have come down to us through the glosses of his students, and his career offers a window into the development of Islamic mysticism and metaphysics. Wasiti’s legacy includes a number of firsts: he was one of the first students of the great Baghdadi Sufis, the first to migrate east and establish the Baghdadi Sufi tradition in Khurasan, among the first to compose a Quranic commentary, and among the first to articulate a complete metaphysics in keeping with early Sunni theology. Presenting Wasiti’s life and work within the context of the development and spread of Sufism, author Laury Silvers goes on to provide an analysis of his theological perspective on the divine reality.