Skip to main content

Ibn (al-)ʿArabī, Muḥyi al-Dīn

Ibn (al-)ʿArabī, Muḥyi al-Dīn (1165–1240 (AH 560–638)). A great Sūfī mystic and original thinker, called al-shaikh al-akbar (the Great Teacher, Shaykh) by his followers. He profoundly influenced the development of Islamic mysticism and philosophy. He was generally well received, though in Egypt the ʿulamā denounced him as a heretic, and there was a movement to assassinate him.

Ibn al-ʿArabī synthesized Hellenic, Persian, and Indian systems of thought into his own particular system, emphasizing monistically wahdat-al-wujūd (Unity of Existence) and al-Insān al-Kāmil (The Perfect Man). For him, Being is essentially one, and all phenomenal existence is a manifestation of the divine substance. For that reason he was suspected of pantheism.

More than 800 works have been attributed to him, and it is claimed by some that about 400 have survived. His major works are al-Futūḥāt al-Makkīya (The Meccan Revelations, a complete system of mystical knowledge in 560 chapters), Fuṣūṣ al-Hikām (The Bezels of Wisdom, tr. R. W. J. Austin 1981, A. A. al-Tarjumana 1980), Kitāb al-Ajwiba (The Book of Answers), and Tarjumān al-Ashwāq (The Interpretation of Divine Love).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Ibn (al-)ʿArabī, Muḥyi al-Dīn." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . 26 Mar. 2019 <>.

"Ibn (al-)ʿArabī, Muḥyi al-Dīn." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . (March 26, 2019).

"Ibn (al-)ʿArabī, Muḥyi al-Dīn." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Retrieved March 26, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.