A Timbuktu manuscript expressing the mystical thoughts of Yusuf-ibn-Said

Access full-text article here


Peer-Reviewed Research


This article is based on a Timbuktu manuscript listed in a digital form on the Library of Congress – Global Gateway. The authors of this article were involved in the translation and exegesis of the manuscript. Of significance, aside from the translation, is the exegetical analysis of the manuscript which was translated and written simultaneously in a poetic form so as to bring forth the intended beauty of the author of the manuscript. From the eighty-eight lines, eighty-three are dedicated to theosophical ethical thoughts as well as to the spiritual sarcasm of the author. The context addresses a reciprocal relationship between God and humanity and how humanity can experience the highest form of happiness in this world and the hereafter. Therefore this manuscript is not only a mystical text but also contributes to Islamic ethics. In the exegesis of the translated work, Qur’anic verses were incorporated to lend support to the text where necessary.