Automotive Holiday Deals Books Gift Guide Books Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Prime Music Sweepstakes egg_2015 All-New Amazon Fire TV Grocery Gifts for Her Amazon Gift Card Offer cm15 cm15 cm15 $30 Off Amazon Echo $30 Off Fire HD 6 Kindle Cyber Monday Deals Holiday Music in CDs & Vinyl Shop Now HTL

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Buy New
  • List Price: $43.95
  • Save: $8.17 (19%)
Only 18 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
Alone with the Alone has been added to your Cart
Sell yours for a Gift Card
We'll buy it for $11.68
Learn More
Trade in now
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

Alone with the Alone Paperback – March 2, 1998

28 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
$29.67 $23.26

Take an Extra 30% Off Any Book
$35.78 FREE Shipping. Only 18 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Alone with the Alone
  • +
  • The Man of Light in Iranian Sufism
Total price: $51.70
Buy the selected items together

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • Take an Extra 30% Off Any Book: Use promo code HOLIDAY30 at checkout to get an extra 30% off any book for a limited time. Excludes Kindle eBooks and Audible Audiobooks. Restrictions apply. Learn more | Shop now

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: French

About the Author

Henry Corbin was Professor of Islamic Religion at the Sorbonne and was the leading authority in the West on Iranian-Islamic thought.

Looking for the Audiobook Edition?
Tell us that you'd like this title to be produced as an audiobook, and we'll alert our colleagues at If you are the author or rights holder, let Audible help you produce the audiobook: Learn more at

Product Details

  • Series: Bollingen Series (General)
  • Paperback: 440 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (March 2, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0691058342
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691058344
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #621,525 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

76 of 80 people found the following review helpful By Craig Chalquist, PhD, author of TERRAPSYCHOLOGY and DEEP CALIFORNIA on October 22, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of the best books on esoteric Persian thought I've ever read; immensely scholarly and yet largely readable, though very rich and thick with insight in places you'll want to slow down and really absorb. (A newcomer to Ibn 'Arabi's writings, I'm reviewing this book from a depth-psychological point of view.)
If you've read my other reviews you know I'm a relentless critic of unreadable writing, much of which is symptomatic of a narcissistic unavailability better dealt with in therapy than through a publisher or fan club. Corbin is not easy to follow in places, but it's the concentration of the material that makes for more careful study--and makes more careful study worthwhile.
I was particularly moved by the image of the saddened God breathing out a sigh at being unknown, a sigh that made space for humans to reflect God back to God and thereby become the "secret treasure." Corbin's criticism of "becoming one with God" mirrors Buber's of "doctrines of absorption": both praise a dialog between person and the Divine rather than a reduction of one to the other.
Note to students of James Hillman: while many of Hillman's ideas can be found here (the heart as an organ of soulful perception, for instance), Ibn 'Arabi makes a clear, non-Hillmanic distinction between Forms (Images) of God and the ineffable true God that shines through the Forms like light through stained glass. This distinction does not exist for archetypal psychology, which collapses the archetypal image into the archetype itself and regards extra-psychic activities as outside its purview.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
41 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Timaeus on July 19, 2004
Format: Paperback
I have noticed that there are a few Sunni/wahabi types who are reviewing this book and giving it low ratings. Since they have already condemned Arabi, and sufism before they have understood either, I fail to see what value their reviews could be. Instead of a critique of this book, or Arabi on their own merits, these individuals merely compare it to Shi'a Islam. Let me tell you this: if you are looking for a book to re-confirm your fundamentalist beliefs in any religion, this book, sufism and mysticism as a whole are not for you, so don't waste your time reading or reviewing these books. On the other hand, if you're the sort of individual who wishes to experience God directly, through the heart, and without the idolatrous worship of scriptural dogma and the snares of the intellect, then this book, Arabi and the works of other great sufi writers and poets are meant for you. I say this to all people, regardless of what religion they are, or if they even have a religion at all.

The only thing which might be better than reading this book, is reading Arabi himself. This is a useful introduction to a vast field, that gives a careful analysis to his ideas and therefore it is a must. I will have to re-read it, to get everything out of it and at that time I may change my rating.
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Laurie on October 17, 2008
Format: Paperback
Ibn `Arabî was one of the greatest and (still) most controversial figures in the history of Islam. Familiar categories don't fit him. Philosopher, theologian, saint, mystic, Kabbalist: he was a bit like all of these but not exactly any of them. William Blake is his only close Western counterpart, but Blake was a changeling, a one-off, while Ibn `Arabî was a devout Muslim: strictly observant, given to fasting, prayer, solitary retreats, pilgrimage, immersion in the Qur`an.

He moved in a radiant atmosphere unknown to most of us; he saw visions the way other people sneeze; Qur`anic verses became spirits who protected him. His writings are poetic, recondite, startling, naïve, uncategorisable, full of Qur`anic references and dream-images (no-one had ever told his unconscious mind it was supposed to be unconscious.)

Despite his vast influence on Islam, his prodigious output is only beginning to be translated. This book is the best introduction, but requires caution. It is one of the most wonderful and exasperating books in existence: it presents ideas so exciting they make your ears pop, but in a turbid professorial style that makes reading like swimming backwards through treacle.

Corbin also approaches his subject through his own preoccupations, derived from the crisis of Western philosophy in the early 20th century: Islamic concepts of non-empirical knowledge showed him the way out of the impasse. Thus the book has been criticised as one-sided; as half Ibn `Arabî, half Corbin. Yet William Chittick's model study ("The Sufi Path of Knowledge") seems trimmed and academic beside Corbin's passionate engagement.

Here you can read of prayer that creates its object; of the mutual discovery of the Infinite and the finite; of realms of Imagination more real than material things; of angels who exist because we speak with them. This is the door to a world of wonders; prepare to be turned upside-down.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By A. Khalil on November 21, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is an important study of imagination in Ibn Arabi by a significant philosopher-Orientalist. Corbin differentiates imagination from mere "fantasy," an "exercise of thought without foundation in nature." Thus what he has in mind when speaking of imagination is quite different from what we usually associate with the term. Cosmic Imagination is the creative power that gives birth to the sensory world: God imagines the cosmos and brings it into being. Imagining is a creative act which at the Divine level is a form of genesis where God draws out existence from Himself. This view stands in contrast to creation ex nihilo, a theological view partly responsible, in Corbin's view, for the degeneration of imagination into fantasy. But it is not only God who creates through Imagination, but man as well. The God that man creates is a theophony of man's active imagination, which is merely an organ of "absolute theopanic Imagination" (takhayyl mutlaq). This is another way of saying that God imagines Himself or rather creates an image of Himself through man, and that this imagining is a part of a larger Divine Imagination. No two images of God created by mortal imagination are exactly alike.
Most of the work is based on Ibn Arabi's Fusus al-Hikam, but as Chittick has noted, determining where Ibn Arabi ends and Corbin begins is not a simple task.
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
Alone with the Alone
This item: Alone with the Alone
Price: $35.78
Ships from and sold by

Want to discover more products? Check out these pages to see more: books sufism, archetype of imagination, ibn arabi, creative temptations, henry corbin