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Chapter 1 1. There is some uncertainty concerning the date of Bediuzzaman Said Nursi’s birth, but the majority of available sources give it as 1877. 2. Bruinessen, Agha, Shaikh and State, 247. He specifies that in Kurdistan it is an honorific that denotes followers of the Naqshbandê order. 3. Badıllı, Nursi, 1:71–72. 4. See Bruinessen, Mullahs, Sufis, and Heretics. 5. In his later years, Nursi claimed in private conversation that he was a Sayyid, that is, a direct descendant of the Prophet Muhammad. See Salih Özcan in S*ahiner, Son S*ahitler, 3:129; Muhiddin Yürüten, in S*ahiner, Son S*ahitler, 3:74; and Hüseyin Aksu, in S*ahiner, Son S*ahitler (1980 ed.) 1:242–43. The first two men record that Nursi said both of his parents were from a line of Sayyids. Bediuzzaman told Salih Özcan that his mother was “Husaynî,” and his father, “Hasanî.” His family was not known as a Sayyid family. 6. S*ahiner, Nurs Yolu, 68; Badıllı, Nursi, 1:43. 7. See Bruinessen, Agha, Shaikh and State, 224ff. 8. S*ahiner, Bilinmeyen (13th ed.), 312; Nursi, Rays, 280. 9. S*ahiner, Nurs Yolu 2, 153. 10. S*ahiner, Bilinmeyen (6th ed.), 46; Nursi, Flashes, 128; Nursî, Muhâkemat, 22–23. 11. See Algar, “Political Aspects of Naqshbandi History,” 131; and Mardin, “Naks*ibendi Order in Turkish History.” 12. See the special issue on the Qa\dirê order, Journal of the History of Sufism 1–2 (2000). Published in Istanbul by Simurg Press. 13. Mardin, “Nursi,” 75. See also Bruinessen, Agha, Shaikh and State, 223ff. 14. Nursi, Emirdag¨ Lahikası (1959 ed.), 1:53. 15. The Ghawth of Hizan was the title of Shaikh Sayyid Sibgatullah Arvasi, a khalifa of Kha\lid Jazarê, who is turn was a khalifa of Mawlana Khalid. See Bruinessen, Agha, Shaikh and State, 324, 337. He was reputed to be the most holy of contemporary shaikhs and is buried in the village of Geyda near Hizan. See also S*ahiner, Son S*ahitler (1993 ed.), 1:22–24. 353 Notes 16. For a brief biography of ‘Abd al-Qa\dir al-Gêla\nê (1077–1166), see Trimingham , Sufi Orders of Islam, 40–44. According to this, he was not himself a Sufi preceptor but rather a preacher and religious instructor, and did not found the Qadiriyya order, which grew up sometime after his death. 17. Nursi, Sikke-i Tasdik-i Gaybi, 116. 18. Ibid., 71. 19. Nursi, Emirdag¨ Lahikası (1959 ed.), 1:52. 20. Risale-i Nur Külliyatı Müellifi, 31–32. 21. For another prophecy by the same shaikh, see Badıllı, Nursi, 1:84 n. 23. 22. For a similar story corroborating this, see Badıllı, Nursi, 1:78. 23. Clay, “Labour Migration and Economic Conditions,” 3–4. 24. Abdurrahman, Tarihçe-i Hayatı, 6–7; Badıllı, Nursi, 1:86–87. 25. Shaykh Emin Efendi was a famous scholar whose medrese was in the Kızılmescit quarter of Bitlis. He was the teacher of many notable people, and went to Istanbul 1900. There he was greeted with a formal ceremony and had private conversation with Sultan Abdülhamid II. He returned to Bitlis in 1903 and died there in 1908 at the age of seventy. See, S*ahiner, Bilinmeyen (6th ed.), 53. 26. Hamza, “Bediüzzaman,” 668; Risale-i Nur Külliyatı Müellifi, 33. 27. Abdurrahman, Tarihçe-i Hayatı, 8–10; Risale-i Nur Külliyatı Müellifi, 33–35. 28. The famous Sufi scholar Nu\r al-Dên ‘Abd al-Rah≥ma\n Ja\mê (1414–92), lived in Herat. Of his numerous works, the one known as Molla Jami was a commentary on a work on Arabic syntax called Al-Ka\fiya by Ibn H≥a\jib, and formed part of the medrese syllabus until recent times. Around one hundred commentaries were written on this work, each of which had glosses and further annotations. See Türkiye Diyanet Vakfı ÿslam Ansiklopedisi (henceforth TDVIA), S. V. “ÿbnü’l-Hacib” by Hulûsi Kılıç. 29. Jam‘ al-Jawa\mi‘ is a work on the principles of fiqh by Ta\j al-Dên al-Subkê (d. 1370); Sharh≥ al-Mawa\qif is on ‘ilm al-kala\m (theology) and ‘aqa\‘id (doctrine), and is by Sayyid Sharêf al-Jurja\nê (d. 1413); and Ibn H≥ajar is a work on the principles of fiqh by Ibn H≥ajar al-Haytham...


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