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William C. Chittick (born 1943) is a philosoper, writer, translator and interpreter of classical Islamic philosophical and mystical texts. He is best known for his work on Rumi and Ibn 'Arabi, and has written extensively on the school of Ibn 'Arabi, Islamic philosophy, and Islamic cosmology.
Born in Milford, Connecticut, Chittick finished his BA at the College of Wooster in Ohio, and then went on to complete a PhD in Persian literature at University of Tehran under the supervision of Seyyed Hossein Nasr in 1974. He taught comparative religion at Tehran's Aryamehr Technical University and left Iran before the revolution. Chittick is currently Distinguished Professor in the Department of Asian and Asian American Studies at Stony Brook University. He was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship for his academic contributions in 2014.
Chittick has published 30 books and numerous articles on Islamic intellectual history, Sufism and Islamic philosophy.
- The Sufi Doctrine of Rumi: An Introduction (Tehran: Aryamehr University Press, 1974). A new edition, The Sufi Doctrine of Rumi, released in 2005 (see below).
- The Sufi Path of Love: The Spiritual Teachings of Rumi (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1983). It has been translated into Russian (1995), Indonesian (2000), Persian (2004, 2005) and Bosnian (2005).
- The Sufi Path of Knowledge: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1989). It has been partially translated into Indonesian (2001) and fully into Persian (2010).
- Imaginal Worlds: Ibn al-'Arabi and the Problem of Religious Diversity (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1994). It has been translated into Turkish (1999), Indonesian (2001), Spanish (2004) and Persian (2004, 2005, 2007).
- With Sachiko Murata, The Vision of Islam (New York: Paragon, 1994). It has been translated into Persian (1999), Turkish (2000), Indonesian (2005), Albanian (2008), Urdu (2008) and Russian (2014).
- Varolman?n Boyutlar? (The Dimensions of Existence) A collection of seventeen essays edited and translated by Turan Koç (Istanbul: Insan Yay?nlar?, 1997).
- The Self-Disclosure of God: Principles of Ibn al-'Arabi's Cosmology (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1998).
- Sufism: A Short Introduction (Oxford: Oneworld, 2000). It has been translated into Indonesian (2002), Turkish (2003), Persian (2004, 2007), Albanian (2007), Italian (2009) and Russian (2012).
- The Heart of Islamic Philosophy:The Quest for Self-Knowledge in the Teachings of Afdal al-Din Kashani (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001). It has been translated into Persian (2011).
- Ibn 'Arabi: Heir to the Prophets (Oxford: Oneworld, 2005). It has been translated into German (2012), Albanian (2012), Turkish (2014), Persian (2014) and Arabic (2015).
- The Sufi Doctrine of Rumi: Illustrated Edition (Bloomington, IN: World Wisdom, 2005). It has been translated into Spanish (2008) and Albanian (2009).
- Science of the Cosmos, Science of the Soul: The Pertinence of Islamic Cosmology in the Modern World (Oxford: Oneworld, 2007). It has been translated into Persian (2009), Indonesian (2010), Turkish (2010) and Albanian (2011).
- With Sachiko Murata and Tu Weiming, The Sage Learning of Liu Zhi: Islamic Thought in Confucian Terms (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Asia Centre, 2009).
- In Search of the Lost Heart: Explorations in Islamic Thought. An anthology of Chittick's writings (from 1975 to 2012) edited by Mohammed Rustom, Atif Khalil, and Kazuyo Murata (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2012). It has been translated into Persian. (2017)
- Divine Love: Islamic Literature and the Path to God (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2013). It has been translated into Persian (2016).
- "Il sufismo operativo in Rumi" (translated into Italian by Elémire Zolla), Conoscenza religiosa, Vol. 3 (1975), pp. 272-288
- "A Shadhili Presence in Shi'ite Islam?", Sophia Perennis, Vol. 1, No. 1 (1975), pp. 97-100
- "Ibn `Arabi's own Summary of the Fusûs: 'The Imprint of the Bezels of Wisdom'", Sophia Perennis, Vol. 1 No. 2 (1975), pp. 88-128
- ""Matâli`-i îmân" by Sadr al-Dîn Qûnawî [d. 1273], edition of the Persian text", Sophia Perennis, Vol. 4, No. 1 (1978), pp. 57-80
- "The Last Will and Testament of Ibn 'Arabi's Foremost Disciple and Some Notes on its Author", Sophia Perennis, Vol. 4, No. 1 (1978), pp. 43-58
- "The Perfect Man as the Prototype of the Self in the Sufism of J?m?", Studia Islamica, No. 49 (1979), pp. 135-157
- ""Lama'at (Divine Flashes [of Fakhruddin 'Iraqi]), Selections Translated" (with P.L. Wilson)", Gnosis, Vol. 7-8 (1979), pp. 23-46
- "Commentary on a Hadith by Sadr al-Din Qunawi", Alserat, Vol. 4, No. 1, (1980), pp. 23-30. Translated by Grazia Marchianò, "Un commento esoterico di Sadr Al-Din Qunawi." Conoscenza religiosa, 1983/1, pp. 10-17
- "Sultan Burhan al-Din's Sufi Correspondence", Wiener Zeitschrift für die Kunde des Morgenlandes, Vol. 73 (1981), pp. 33-45
- "Sadr al-D?n Q?naw? on the Oneness of Being", International Philosophical Quarterly 21 (2):171-184 (1981)
- "Mysticism versus Philosophy in Earlier Islamic History: The Al-s?, Al-Q?naw? Correspondence", Religious Studies, Vol. 17, No. 1 (Mar., 1981), pp. 87-104
- "Jami on Divine Love and the image of wine", Studies in Mystical Literature, Vol. 1, No. 3 (1981), pp. 193-209
- "The Five Divine Presences: From al-Qunawi to al-Qaysari", Muslim World, 72 (1982), pp. 107-28. Turkish translation by Turan Koç, "Bes Ilahî Hazret: el-Konevî'den el-Kayserî'ye," Uluslararasi Davud el-Kayserî Sempozyumu. Ankara: Kayserî Büyüksehir Belediyese Kültür Müdürlügü, 1998, pp. 347-63
- "Words of the All-Merciful", Parabola, Vol. 8, No. 3 (1983), pp. 18-25
- "The chapter headings of the Fusus", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Vol. 2, 1984, pp. 41-94
- "Beatific Vision and Poetic Imagery in Bahâ' Walad", Studies in Mystical Literature, Vol. 5, No. 2 (1985), pp. 21-32; also Sufi, Vol. 7 (1990), pp. 5-9
- "Islam and the Loss of Equilibrium", Journal of Dharma, Vol. 10, No. 1 (1985), pp. 42-59; also Islamic Quarterly, Vol. 20 (1986), pp. 165-178
- "Rumi's View of Imam Husayn", Alserat, Vol. 12, No. 1-2 (1986), pp. 3-12. Translated into Persian by Hasan Lâhûtî as "Imâm Husayn dar Nagâh-i Mawlawî", Mîrâth-i Jâwîdân, Vol. 17 (1376/1997), pp. 92-95; also in Gulistân, Vol. 2, No. 3 (1377/1998), pp. 107-18
- "Belief and Transformation: The Sufi Teachings of Ibn al-`Arabî", The American Theosophist, Vol. 74, No. 5 (1986), pp. 181-192
- "'God Surrounds all Things': An Islamic Perspective on the Environment", The World and I, Vol. 1, No. 6 (June 1986), pp. 671-678
- ""Rumi's View of Death" Alserat, Vol. 13, No. 2 (1987), pp. 30-51
- "From the Meccan Openings: The Myth of the Origin of Religion and the Law", The World and I, Vol. 3, No. 1 (January 1988), pp. 655-665
- "Death and the World of Imagination - Ibn al-Arabi's Eschatology", The Muslim World, 78 (1988), pp. 51-82. Turkish translation by T. Koç. Yeldi Iklim 2, May 1992, pp. 41-46. Italian translation by Walter Librale, "La morte et il 'mundo immaginale': l'escatologia akbariana", Perennia Verba, Vol. 4 (2000), pp. 59-106
- "The World of Imagination and Poetic Imagery According to Ibn al-`Arabî", Temenos, Vol. 10 (1989), pp. 99-119
- "The Love Song of Ayatollah Khomeini" (with P. Clawson)", The New Republic (Sept. 4, 1989), p. 35
- ""Khwâja Khurd's Treatise on the Gnostic", Sufi, Vol. 5 (1990), pp. 11-12. Persian as "Risâla-yi 'ârif-i Khwâja Khurd", Sûfî, Vol. 4 (1368 ), pp. 22-25
- "The Theological Roots of War and Peace in Islam", Islamic Quarterly, Vol. 34 (1990), pp. 145-163
- "The Islamic Concept of Human Perfection" The World and I, Vol. 6, No. 2 (February 1991), pp. 498-513
- "Ebn al-`Arabi as Lover", Sufi, Vol. 9 (1991), pp. 6-9. Persian translation by S. Hamza'î, Sûfî, Vol. 13 (1370/1991), pp. 12-17.
- "The Bodily Positions of the Ritual Prayer", Sufi, Vol. 12 (1991-92), pp. 16-18. French translation by E. de Longrée as "Les gestes de la prière en Islam", Initiations, Vol. 7 (1991-92), pp. 15-19
- "The Way of the Sufi", Sufi, Vol. 14 (1992), pp. 5-10
- "Notes on Ibn al-'Arabî's Influence in India", Muslim World, Vol. 82 (1992), pp. 218-41
- "Khwâja Khurd wa risâla-yi Nûr-i wahdat-i way", Iran Nameh, Vol. 11, No. 1 (1993), pp. 101-20
- "The Spiritual Path of Love in Ibn al-'Arabi and Rumi", Mystics Quarterly, Vol. 19, No. 1 (March 1993), pp. 4-16
- "Meetings with Imaginal Men", Sufi, Vol. 19 (1993), pp. 8-13.
- "Ahmad Sam`ânî on Divine Mercy", Sufi, Vol. 27 (1995), pp. 5-11
- "The Divine Roots of Human Love", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Volume 17, 1995
- "The Muhammadan Inheritance", Horizons Maghrébins, Vol. 30 (Hiver 1995), pp. 55-61; reprinted in Iqbal Review, Vol. 38, 1997, pp. 141-50
- "Presence with God", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Vol. 20, 1996, pp. 15-32
- "Can the Islamic Intellectual Heritage be Recovered?", Iqbal Review, Vol. 40, No. 3 (1998), pp. 11-25
- "The Pertinence of Islamic Cosmology: Reflections on the Philosophy of Afdal al-Din Kashani", Journal of Religious Thought (Andîsha-yi dînî, Shiraz University), Vol. 1 (1999), pp. 3-20
- "Words to the Wise", Sufi, Vol. 42 (1999), pp. 41-43
- "Time, Space, and the Objectivity of Ethical Norms: The Teachings of Ibn al-'Arab?", Islamic Studies, Vol. 39, No. 4, Special Issue: Islam and Science (Winter 2000), pp. 581-596
- "On the Teleology of Perception", Transcendent Philosophy, Vol. 1 (2000), pp. 1-18
- "The Goal of Islamic Philosophy: Reflections on the Works of Afdal al-Din Kashani", Sacred Web, Vol. 5 (2000), pp. 17-29
- "The Disclosure of the Intervening Image: Ibn 'Arabî on Death", Discourse, Vol. 24, No. 1, Mortals to Death (Winter 2002), pp. 51-62
- "The Pluralistic Vision of Persian Sufi Poetry", Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations, Vol. 14, No. 4 (October 2003), pp. 423-428
- "The central point : Qunawi's role in the school of Ibn 'Arabi", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Vol. 35, 2004, pp. 25-45
- "Slumber Seizes Him Not - The remedy for forgetfulness", Parabola, Vol. 30, No. 1, 2005 : 32
- "Spirit, body and in-between - ambiguity and the intermediate realm", Parabola, Vol. 30, No. 3, 2005 : 6
- "The wisdom of animals", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Vol. 46, 2009, pp. 27-37
- "The anthropology of compassion", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Vol. 48, 2010, pp. 1-17
- "The religion of love revisited", Journal of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society, Vol. 54, 2013, pp. 37-59
- "Love in Islamic Thought", Religion Compass, Vol. 8, No. 7 (2014), pp. 229-38
- With Seyyed Hossein Nasr (vols. 1-3) and Peter Zirnis (vols. 2-3), An Annotated Bibliography of Islamic Science (Tehran: Imperial Iranian Academy of Philosophy, 1975-78, vols. 1-2; Tehran: Cultural Studies and Research Institute, 1991, vol. 3).
- 'Abd al-Rahmân Jâmî, Naqd al-nusûs fi sharh naqsh al-fusûs, Persian and Arabic text with critical apparatus, notes, English and Persian introductions, indexes (Tehran: Imperial Iranian Academy of Philosophy, 1977).
- The Works of Seyyed Hossein Nasr Through His Fortieth Birthday. Edited and Introduced (Uppsala: University of Utah Press, 1977).
- The Inner Journey: Views from the Islamic Tradition. Edited and Introduced (Sandpoint, ID: White Thread Press, 2007).
- The Essential Seyyed Hossein Nasr. Edited and Introduced (Bloomington, IN: World Wisdom, 2007).
- Muhammad Husayn Tabataba'i, A Shi'ite Anthology (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1981).
- Javad Nurbakhsh, Sufism [I] : Meaning, Knowledge, and Unity (New York: Khaniqahi-Nimatullahi, 1981).
- Fakhr al-Din 'Iraqi, Divine Flashes. Translated with P.L. Wilson (New York: Paulist Press, 1982).
- Javad Nurbakhsh, Sufism [II]: Fear and Hope, Contraction and Expansion, Gathering and Dispersion, Intoxication and Sobriety, Annihilation and Subsistence (New York: Khaniqahi-Nimatullahi, 1982).
- Ali ibn Abi Talib, Supplications (Du'â), (London: Muhammadi Trust, 1982).
- Zayn al-'Abidin, The Psalms of Islam. Translated and introduced (London: Muhammadi Trust, 1988). Reprinted as The Psalms of Islam: English Version (UK: al-Mahdi Institute, and Marsta, Sweden: Me'raj Educational Publishers, 2007).
- Javad Nurbakhsh, Sufism IV: Repentance, Abstinence, Renunciation, Wariness, Humility, Humbleness, Sincerity, Steadfastness, Courtesy (London: Khaniqahi-Nimatullahi, 1988).
- William Chittick (editor), Faith and Practice of Islam: Three Thirteenth Century Sufi Texts (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1992).
- 'Abd al-Rahman Jami, Gleams. Translated in Sachiko Murata, Chinese Gleams of Sufi Light: Wang Tai-yu's Great Learning of the Pure and Real and Liu Chih's Displaying the Concealment of the Real Realm (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2000).
- Mulla Sadra, The Elixir of the Gnostics. Translated, Edited, and Introduced (Provo: Brigham Young University Press, 2003).
- Shams al-Din Tabrizi, Me and Rumi: The Autobiography of Shams-i Tabrizi. Annotated and Translated (Louisville, KY: Fons Vitae, 2004).
- Ibn 'Arabi, select translations from The Meccan Revelations. Translated by Michel Chodkiewicz (ed.), The Meccan Revelations (New York: Pir Press, 2004).
- Sadr al-Din al-Qunawi, The Texts. Translated in Seyyed Hossein Nasr and Mehdi Aminrazavi (eds.), An Anthology of Philosophy in Persia, vol. 4 (London: I.B. Tauris in association with The Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2012). Note: The translation of this text in this volume is slightly abridged. For the complete translation, see https://www.academia.edu/8101330/Sadr_al-Din_Qunawi_The_Texts_al-Nusus_
- Aqa Muhammad Rida Qumsha'i, On the Oneness of Existence, or Rather, the Existent and Addendum to the Ringstone on Seth from 'The Ringstones of Wisdom': On the Topics of Friendship. Translated in Seyyed Hossein Nasr and Mehdi Aminrazavi (eds.), An Anthology of Philosophy in Persia, vol. 5 (London: I.B. Tauris in association with The Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2015).
- Rashid al-Din Maybudi, select translations from The Unveiling of the Mysteries and the Provision of the Pious (Louisville: Fons Vitae, 2015). Also available online at Altafsir.com.
- Ahmad Sam'ani, The Repose of the Spirits: A Sufi Commentary on the Divine Names. Translated and Introduced (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2019).