The cure of sorrows by Sāwīrus b. al-Muqaffaʿ: Between philosophy and mystic

The work Ṭibb Al-Ghamm follows the path of the Greek philosophical genre of consolation. According to Sāwīrus, sorrows and sadness have their origin in sin and worldly desires. Only through a reason centered in revelation, that demands worldy renunciation, sadness and sorrows can be overcome. Thus, he brings closer the philosophical thought to the ascetic and mystic understanding of sorrows. The philosophical way of life proposed by philosophers was reframed and conceived as an ascetic way of life anchored in revelation. In Christian and Muslim traditions sorrows purify the soul, being a deterrant of arrogance and unthankfulness to God. The two kinds of sorrows, the necessary one for the purification of the sould and the sorrows as a consequence of sins are two different ones, but the remedy is one: To be a happy man, since “A happy man cannot be touched by sorrow.”

المتحدث: Rocio Daga Portillo

Lecturer at Ludwig-Maximilian University, Munich, Germany.