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If you would like to be kept up to date with details of events by email, please contact the Secretary.

If you know of an event relevant to Ibn 'Arabi studies, please tell us about it.

The Symposium

Each year the Society organizes Symposia in the UK and the USA on an aspect of Ibn 'Arabi's work.

These international gatherings bring together people from many different fields and traditions, and include scholars, students, and anyone interested in what Ibn 'Arabi has to say. These events provide a unique opportunity for both speakers and delegates, specialists and non-specialists, to enrich their understanding of the Shaykh's teachings and their relevance today. The Society also encourages public seminars and lectures and can provide speakers on request.

Symposiums in Murcia and Oxford

Murcia March 2014

La razón inspirada y el camino del corazón
3rd Symposium in Murcia

Oxford May 2014

'Jesus and Mary – A Mystical Perspective'
31st Annual Symposium in the UK

La razón inspirada y el camino del corazón

7th to 8th March 2014, Murcia, Spain

The 3rd International Symposium of Muhyiddin Ibn Arabi Society Latina, in conjunction with IBAFF.

The full title of the symposium is: La razón inspirada y el camino del corazón - En homenaje a María Zambrano / 'Inspired Reason and the Way of the Heart - A tribute to Maria Zambrano'

Programme to follow see MIAS Latina. Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society Latina (MIAS Latina) is an independent association which was established in Murcia, Spain in 2011.

'Jesus and Mary – A Mystical Perspective'

24th and 25th May 2014, St Anne's College, Oxford.

The 31st annual Symposium of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society in the UK will be held at St Anne's College, Oxford, in May 2014.

Speakers and provisional titles of papers


As well as papers, the symposium programme will include seminars led by the speakers. More details will be posted here nearer the time, and a full programme will be sent to participants.

Saturday evening

There will be a concert at St. Anne's on Saturday evening – further details will be posted online. There will be a small additional charge. Payment on the day.

Accommodation and meals

There are many places to stay in Oxford within different price bands, including a good Youth Hostel within walking distance of the city centre.

The Oxford Information Centre is a good source of information about hotels and B&Bs. 

There is no accommodation at St Anne's, but a few rooms have been booked at a nearby college. To check availability please contact the Society secretary.

Early booking for accommodation in Oxford is essential.

Saturday and Sunday lunch: An exciting addition to the Symposium this year is the delicious buffet lunch available on both days at St Anne's. We strongly encourage people to attend the lunches as it provides a wonderful opportunity to engage with other participants and the speakers. The college need to know numbers three weeks in advance. To ensure you have a place at the lunches, please make sure you book them with your registration.

Evening meals: St Anne’s College is close to the city centre and within easy reach of a number of places to eat. Advance booking is advisable at weekends.

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Registration and Lunch

Registration feesSaturdaySundayBoth
Concessions/Over 65s£40£40£65
Full-time student with ID£20£20£30

How to register
Online registration form
Printable registration form (pdf file)

Sponsorship donation: The pricing of Registration fees is aimed at making the Symposium affordable to a wide range of people, but it rarely covers its costs. If you are able to pay a bit more for your registration, and would like to, a donation will help keep down the fees and costs for students and others. Any donation would be welcome, but as a guideline we suggest £10 - £15.

About the speakers

Jane Baun

Jane Baun is Lecturer in Theology at Ripon College Cuddesdon, and Research Lecturer in Eastern Church History for the Oxford University Theology Faculty and at St. Benet's Hall. An Anglican priest, she also serves as a Curate in the parish of Abingdon-on-Thames. Before moving to England, she was Assistant Professor of History and Hellenic Studies at New York University. Her publications include Tales from Another Byzantium: Celestial Journey and Local Community in the Medieval Greek Apocrypha (Cambridge, 2007), and numerous articles probing the interface of 'unofficial' and 'official' belief and practice in medieval Eastern Orthodox religious culture.

Paper: Mary and Jesus and the Way of the Heart in Rumi and the Philokalia, Jane Baun and Laura Soureli

Jaume Flaquer

Jaume Flaquer is a Jesuit priest and Professor of Interreligious Dialogue in the Faculty of Theology of Catalonia in Barcelona. He holds a PhD in Islamic Studies from the Sorbonne; his thesis was on Jesus according to the Sufi mystic Ibn 'Arabi. Publications include Christianity and Fundamentalism (1997) and Travelling Lives (2007). He gave a paper at the Second International Symposium of the Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society – Latina in 2013 on The Spiritual Qualities of Jesus according to Ibn 'Arabi.

Paper: The akbarian Jesus: the paradigm of a pilgrim in God

Denis Gril

Denis Gril is a leading figure in the field of Akbarian studies. He is now retired from Aix-Marseille Université. He continues to oversee some doctoral students on Sufism and is a member of the IREMAM (Institute de'Études et de Recherches sur le Monde Arabe et Musulman) in Aix-en-Provence. He has devoted himself to the study of the work of Ibn 'Arabi, and the study of sainthood within Islam. His other research interests include Islamic spirituality and its scriptural foundations. His many published works include chapters from the Futuhat in Meccan Revelations, Le Livre de l'Arbre et des Quatre Oiseaux, Le Dévoilement des Effets du Voyage, and the Kitab al-inbah of 'Abdallah Badr al-Habashi.

Paper: Jesus, Mary and the Book (according to Ibn al-'Arabī)

Stephen Hirtenstein

Stephen Hirtenstein has been editor of the Society’s Journal for 30 years. He is co-founder and director of Anqa Publishing and author of The Unlimited Mercifier, a spiritual biography of Ibn 'Arabi. He has translated the Mishkat al-Anwar, Ibn 'Arabi's collection of hadith qudsi, and three of Ibn 'Arabi's shorter treatises including The Four Pillars of Spiritual Transformation (2008). He has lectured around the world and leads courses at the University of Oxford Department for Continuing Education. He was awarded the first Tarjuman Prize by MIAS-Latina in 2012 (along with Maurice Gloton).

Paper: Reviving the dead : Ibn 'Arabi as the Heir to Jesus.

Zahra' Langhi

Zahra' Langhi is a scholar and researcher in Islamic history, metaphysics, mysticism, and female spirituality in comparative religions. She has an MA from the American University in Cairo, and is co-founder of the Libyan Women’s Platform for Peace, a socio-political movement which aims at empowering women as well as youth in Libya. Her MA thesis on Sitt 'Ajam, A Muslim Woman Gnostic of the Middle Ages, is to be published by Fons Vitae.

Paper: Virgin Maryam in the Akbarian Perspective: A Matrix of Compassion

Michael Sells

Michael Sells is Professor of Islamic History and Literature at the University of Chicago. He teaches courses on the Qur'an, Islamic love poetry, comparative mystical literature, Arabic Sufi poetry, Arabic religious texts, and Ibn 'Arabi. His publications include: Approaching the Quran: the Early Revelations (2007) and Mystical Languages of Unsaying (1994). He is also well-known for his translations of Arabic poetry including Desert Tracings: Six Classic Arabian Odes (1989) and Stations of Desire – Love Elegies of Ibn 'Arabi and New Poems (2000).

Paper: Life in Ibn 'Arabi's "Ringsetting of Prophecy in the Word of Jesus"

Laura Anellia Soureli

Laura Anellia Soureli is a doctoral student in the Faculty of Divinity at the University of Cambridge. She focuses on cross-cultural dialogue between the Abrahamic religions, with particular interests in hermeneutics, patristics, charisma and power, and mysticism. Her PhD thesis attempts to provide a new reading of the prayer of the heart and examines the concept of deification in the Philokalia, the eighteenth-century patristic anthology on the practice of contemplative prayer. Before turning solely to the study of Eastern Orthodox mystical theology, Laura worked in finance (BSc, University of York, Mathematics and Econometrics; MSc, Finance, Imperial College London), and completed postgraduate study in the Study of Religion at Oxford.

Paper: Mary and Jesus and the Way of the Heart in Rumi and the Philokalia, Jane Baun and Laura Soureli

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About the venue – St Anne's College

St Anne's College Oxford, Ruth Deech Building

St Anne's College is in the Woodstock Road, close to the centre of Oxford, within easy reach of coaches, trains, and many places to eat.

St Anne's College is one of 38 independent, self-governing colleges at Oxford University. Founded in 1952 as a college for women, St Anne's can trace its origins back to 1878 and the formation of the Association for the Education of Women in Oxford. Today it is fully co-educational, with a near equal mix of men and women both in the student body and on the teaching staff, and is one of the largest of the Colleges and Halls that make up the university.

How to get there

The entrance to St Anne's College is in the Woodstock Road, on the right hand side as you walk from the centre, about 300 yards past St Giles Church. It comes shortly before Bevington Road. Link to map on Google.

If you are travelling from outside Oxford by car, it may be best to use the Peartree Park and Ride car park. Located to the north of the city, it can be reached from the A40, the A34, and the M40. Buses from Peartree come down the Woodstock Road, passing the college. Earliest buses are at 6.00 a.m. on Saturday and 8.40 a.m. on Sunday. Last buses are at about 11.30 p.m. on Saturdays and 6.50 p.m. on Sundays. Check the bus timetable here.

Other events

University of Oxford – Department of Continuing Education

Islamic Mystical Poetry

Islamic mystical poetry is one of the world's great literary traditions, covering a period of 1400 years and encompassing a huge variety of cultures and languages – Arabic, Persian, Turkish etc. It is testament to the extraordinary depth and coherence of the vision of Islam. Very different from the theological and legal understandings, it speaks to all human beings of the inherent love and yearning for the divine, of devotion and the ecstatic experience of union with the divine.

Course 5

Wednesday 22nd January to Wednesday 19th February, 2014. Jane Clark and Stephen Hirtenstein.

In this fifth course, we will study the later 'classical' period (14th C), focusing on the work of four major Sufi poets from different areas of the Islamic world: Shabistari (d. 1340), Hajji Bayram (d. 1430), Amir Khusraw (d. 1325) and Hafez (d. 1389). All poems will be studied in English translation, and the focus will be on drawing out their meaning and universal relevance to the human condition. No previous knowledge or attendance of courses is required. More information.

Being Human: Sufi Perspectives on Personal Transformation

Saturday, 22 March, 3 - 5 p.m.

Using material from both Ibn ‘Arabi and Rumi, Nick Yiangou will explore what it means to be fully human according to these great teachers in this seminar. O’Hanlon Center for the Arts, Mill Valley, California.

Fes Festival of Sacred Music

13th - 21st June 2014, Fes, Morocco

Theme: The Conference of the Birds. Fes Festival 2014

Jesus : the Wisdom of Elevation

12th - 19th July, 2014, Chisholme House, Scottish Borders

A week-long study course delving into the heart of the Chapter on Jesus in Ibn 'Arabi's Fusus al-Hikam. Further details

"In the Footsteps" Tour of Andalusia, 2014

2nd - 16th October, 2014

A tour of Andalusia "in the footsteps of Ibn 'Arabi", with Anqa Publishing. For full details and booking see Anqa Tours.