Hurufis – Heretics of Islam

By origin, the term Hurufism comes from the Arabic word “Harf” (حرف), meaning “a letter” of the alphabet. The plural form “Hurufun” (حروف) signifying many letters, seems to be the etymological basis of Hurufism. The academic discipline, or morphology, therefore, investigating the secret of letters is called in Arabic “Ilmu-l Huruf” (الحرف علم) – or in other words, a Lettrist Science; or educational principle. But “Hurufism” has a number of semantic layers in its system of abstractions. For example, that letters and numbers can be calculated in a variety of ways to solve the mysteries of both, past and present time, as well as the future. For the Hurufis, alphabets have a power which transcends mere script. The source of Hurufism disappears into ancient ages. Some investigators have classified this ideology as an independent religion, while others describe it in terms of a mystical sect inside Islam. In which case, modern observes need to explore this school in two quiet distinct ways: Esoteric and Lettrist. This may be why Hurufi scholars tended to work in either an academic manner, or as magicians probing beneath the veil of material surfaces. On one hand, this philosophy raised the human mind to the stars. On the other hand, it gave comfort to those seeking solace in a complicated world. Either way, alphabetical letters formed the foundation upon which these enterprises were built.

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