The Unifying Light of Allah: Ibn Tufayl and Rufus Jones in Dialogue

  • Christy Randazzo
  • David Russell
Part of the Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Mysticism book series (INTERMYST)


This chapter examines the engagement between seventeenth-century Quaker scholars, twentieth-century Quaker theologian Rufus Jones, and the twelfth-century allegorical text Ḥayy ibn Yaqẓān (HIY). It argues that HIY was purposely excised from the history of Quaker theological engagement due to a fundamental misunderstanding of the text, which resulted in a complete ignoring of the text by subsequent Quaker theologians, including Rufus Jones. HIY provides an invaluable dialogue partner with Quaker mysticism, which can offer exciting new ways of examining core premises of Quaker mystical theology and practice—human/divine interdependence and the concomitant Quaker balance between contemplative and active mysticism and religious practice—and create opportunities for bringing the different generations of Quaker theology by Robert Barclay and Rufus Jones back into fruitful dialogue.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christy Randazzo
    • 1
  • David Russell
    • 2
  1. 1.Haddonfield Friends MeetingHaddonfieldUSA
  2. 2.Gulf Coast State CollegePanama CityUSA

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