Rahbat (dread)

Joumana Medlej

London, United Kingdom

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Rahbat رهبة is sometimes translated as “fright”, but “dread” is closer to the real impact of the word. It is one of 5 maqamât that correspond to different qualities of (sacred) fear: “For gazing towards Pre-eternity makes the heart unsettled and utterly overwhelms a man.”

In Sad Maydan Ansari describes them in detail, but in brief:

“[Khawf (fear)] pertains to the repentant….
[Wajal (deep fear)] pertains to worshippers….
[Rahbat (fright)] belongs to the ascetics….
[Ishfaq (apprehension)] is the fear of the gnostic….
[Khushu’ (humbleness) is the fear of the sincere.”

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