Problem of Suffering and Sufi Perspective: An Overview

AQUIL AHMAD

Abstract


The problem of suffering has been one of the existentially relevant issues which have most intimately invited human thinking. Phenomenologically, suffering is too complex to be easily stated. Essentially it belongs to the ‘ontic’ category and not to the epistemic, though passes on to the latter. To know what suffering is, is to undergo it. In Marcel's terminology it is ‘second reflection’ through which one can realize the ‘mystery’ of suffering.The problem of suffering has been significant area of interest for religious reflection. The Stoics in the West and the Buddha in the East are two familiar names dealt with in details. In modern time Nietzsche, Heidegger, Sartre, Camus and other who have dealt with the fact of suffering as an important ingredient of human consciousness. For Nietzsche, suffering born of an urge to perfection is a sign of spiritual vitality and growth. Heidegger’s Angst which is the consequence of the 'apprehension of nothingness’ finds its clear manifestation in man's confrontation with the possibility of death. Sartre’s anguish is connected with human reality within which human existence(being-for-itself=consciousness) implies absolute freedom and its recognition implies anguish.

Keywords


suffering; existential; sufi; mystery; ontic

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