Sufism-Fanaa'

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Al-Fanaa' (Annihilation)


Al-Fanaa' is a key element in the Sufi thought. Once the Sufi becomes assiduous in dthikr, or rememberance of Allah, they claim that he acquires sufficient tranquility of heart to experience a delusion which helps him pass through the various stages described below. First he is bewildered, then intoxicated with love of the Remembered One, and finally he passes through the stage of fanaa', or annihilation, in which he becomes fully absorbed to the point of becoming unaware of himself or the objects around him. Every existing thing seems to vanish, and he feels free of every barrier that could stand in the way of his viewing the Remembered One and nothing else.

To give a better idea of the Sufi concept of Allah, Qunawi, one of Ibn Arabi's disciples, writes:

It is inconceivable that one thing should love another thing in the respect that thing differs from it. It can only love that thing as a result of the property of some meaning shared between the two of them, in respect of which an affinity is established between them which will lead to the domination of the property of that which brings about unification over the properties which brings about differentiation...But the end of love is unity. In the last analysis, God and the perfect man are one, for Being is one."(69)

But when the tenet of fanaa' is weighed in the scale of Islamic law, and judged by the Qur'an and Sunnah, only the part of the remembrance of Allah holds true, while all the rest of bewilderment, intoxication, annihilation and the claim of viewing Allah is revealed to be a blasphemous path to the tenets of incarnation and pantheism. Allah the Exalted says:

"There is none like unto Him; He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower."

Like most Sufi tenets, fanaa' is mentioned neither in the Qur'an nor in the Sunnah. It is rather a Sufi gimmick and a satanic deception, originally schemed by mystics among the Jews, Zoroastrians and Christians to adulterate the great religion of Islam.(70)


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