Skip to main navigation menu Skip to main content Skip to site footer

Appraising Sufism in the Thought of Ibn Taymiyyah and Hasan al-Banna: A Comparative Perspective


Sufism as a religious trend has attracted a lot of scholastic polemics among Muslim scholars. One of the popular critics of Sufism is Ibn Taymiyyah whose thoughts have indelibly influenced the teachings of modern Salafiyyah. In the course of waging war against the propagation of Sufism, modern Salafi scholars have branded counterpart scholars noticed with traces of sympathy for the adherents of mysticism, including Hasan al-Bannᾱ, the founder of Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. Against this backdrop, this work examines, with comparative analysis, the thought of Ibn Taymiyyah and Hasan al-Bannᾱ over Islamic mysticism and the mystics. The purpose of the comparative study is to decide whether the two scholars' views regarding the subject are responsible for the disagreement among their adherents. The research is library-based and adopts descriptive and analytic methods. The bulk of the information was gathered from the works of the two scholars, the works on the duo, and relevant materials on the subject. The findings of the research showed that there is no significant difference in the thought of the two scholars over mysticism. However, Al-Bannᾱ contrary to Ibn Taymiyyah had once been a core member of a Sufi Order, the assertion which has since constituted a source of controversy over the proper status of Al-Bannᾱ as either a Sufi adherent or as a fair critic. It recommends further research over the cause of disparity regarding Sufism between Ibn Taymiyyah and modern Salafis.


Sufism, Ibn Taymiyyah, Hasan al-Banna, Comparative and appraising



Al-Bannā, Hassan. Mudhakkirat ad-Da’wah Wad-Dā’iyah. Cairo: Darus Sahwah, 2011.

Al-Hashidi, Faysal. Risalatun Ukhawiyyah. Yeman: Darul Athar, 2002.

Al-Ilori, Adam Abdullah. Falsafat al-Wilāyah. Lagos: Darun Nur, 2012.

Al-Wā’ῑ, T.Y. Al-Ikwānul Muslimūn. Mansurah: Ash-Shuruq, 2005.

An-Nadawi, Abu al-Hasan. Rabbāniyah Lā Rahbāniyyah, 2nd ed. Damascus: Dar Ibn Kathir, 2010.

Arikewuyo, A.N. “A Comparative Study of al-Ghazali’s and Ibn Taymiyyah’s Views on Sufism”, International Journal of Islamic Thought, Vol.17: (June) 2020.

Arikewuyo, N.A. “Al-Ghazali in Selected Works of Ibn Taymiyyah” Master‘s Dissertation, Department of Religions, University of Ilorin, 2015.

At-Tablawi, M. At-Tasawwuf fi at-Turāth Ibn Taymiyyah. Cairo: Al-Maktabat al-Markaziyyah, 1984.

Ibn Abdul Hādi, M. Al-‘uqud ad-Durriyyah Fi Manaqib Ibn Taymiyyah. Cairo: Maktabat Wahbah, 1998.
Ibn al-Qayyim, Shamsudeen. Madārij as-Sālikῑn. Cairo: Maktabat Sunnah, 2013.

Ibn Taymiyyah, Ahmad Taqiyyudeen. Al-Wassiiyat al-Kubrā. Kaduna: Merciful Production, 2006.

Ibn Taymiyyah, Ahmad Taqiyyudeen. Majmu’at al- Fatāwah. Cairo: Darul Hadith, 2006.

Khan, Qamarudeen. The Political Thought of Ibn Taymiyah. New Delhi: Adam Publishers & Distribution, 2007.

Madkhali, Rabi’u .Amir. Jamā’atun Wāhidah. Cairo: Darul Minhaj, 2002.

Najmi, Ahmad Yahya. Raddul Jawāb. Cairo: Darul Minhaj, 2009.

Qaradawi, Yusuf. Al-Ḥayāt ar-Rabbāniyyah Wal ‘Ilm. Cairo: Maktabat Wahbah,1995.

Qaradawi, Yusuf. Al-Ikhwānul Muslimūn. Cairo: Maktabat Wahbah, 1999.

Quadri, Yasir Anjola. “All in the Name of God”, The One Hundred and Thirty-Third Inaugural Lecture. Ilorin: University of Ilorin Press, 2013.

Shurbaji A.H. Hassan al-Bannā. Alexandria: Darud Da’wah, 1999.

Yusuf, Dauda Gambari. “A Study of Sufism in the Thought of Ibn Taymiyyah”, Master’s Dissertation, Department of Religions, Uni