Traditional Islamic Healing & Medicine – Volume 1: Principles & Foundations by Ḥakīm Mirza Ilyās Kāshānī | Hardcover, 260 pages


Many are acutely aware of the inability of Conventional Medicine to understand and care for the entire Body-Mind-Soul. This failing is seldom from a lack of character, concern, or effort on the part of modern health care providers, but rather the result of a fractured paradigm. A reductionist, materialist framework usurped the spiritual worldview that informed most of the world for millennia, including the world of medicine. For this reason, many turn to Traditional Medicine additionally or exclusively, as it endeavors to care for the entire Body-Mind-Soul. It is a sign of the times that these wisdom traditions are labeled as “alternative” and “complementary” by the dominating institutions of Conventional Medicine.

Traditional Islamic Healing and Medicine is unique among the systems of Traditional Medicine in that it has explicitly preserved a spiritual ontology in study and practice. God, Spirit, and soul are central to any understanding of health, well-being, illness, and disease. Furthermore, the human being is not seen as an isolated individual, but rather a facet of community, society, nature, planet, and cosmos, so that true health and well-being is understood in the context of our interconnectedness. We are a microcosmic emergence of a fundamentally sacred macrocosm. Health-conscious Muslims—whether they are laypersons, students, practitioners, and scholars—are characteristically thirsty for this knowledge, as it is a seamless extension of the Islamic tradition. Muslims trained in Conventional Medicine often struggle to reconcile their medical framework with their spiritual lives. They know that something is wrong, but they are often at a loss to correct the situation. Many people of faith also desire the integration of the physical and spiritual dimensions within themselves, rather than living a disembodied spiritual life—a growing concern with the relentless encroachment of technology into our daily lives and soon even into our very bodies. This book speaks directly to each of these concerns, beginning with foundational principles that can serve us in navigating our immediate challenges.

This book presents the principles of Islamic Medicine as articulated by the Holy Qurʾān and aḥādīth and organizes them by the mystical letters of the Arabic alphabet. The principles are applicable to spiritually inclined health students, practitioners, and scholars across traditions, while speaking directly to Muslims. Some books take a reductionist approach, listing remedies and the conditions they purportedly treat. True healing, however, must account for the entire Body-Mind-Soul.

Product Description

From the Introduction:

“Since the soul rules the body, no discussion of the body can properly begin without a study of the soul—the focus of this first volume. Medicine must first account for the archetypal world informing the soul, around which the flesh of the body generates and drapes. … This text is organized by the Arabic alphabet … through the metaphysical power of each letter (each a cosmic portal to the archetypal world of Divine Qualities). … The soul is invisible, indivisible, and eternal. It cannot be seen with our physical eyes, yet it can be seen through the eye of the heart. It finds expression through space, but it is not confined to any space. It rules the body, but it is not confined to the body.  It expresses everywhere in the body–cell, tissue, organ, system–but is not confined to any particular location. It expresses in time, but is not confined to a particular time, hence its access to past, present, and future. …

The chapters present the fundamental principles of healing and medicine as they are revealed by the seed sounds particular to the human being expressed clearly through the letters of the Arabic alphabet … Recitation is one of the many spiritual practices that supports the process of becoming a real human being, of which one sign is a sanctified presence. Traditional Islamic Healing and Medicine is intimately concerned with the question and process of human becoming–the awakening and embodiment of divine qualities within the soul, in the proper proportion that favors qualities of mercy and beauty over those of strength and power– ad it directly relates to Body-Mind-Soul health.  …

The sacred ambiance of the Islamic tradition has a unique social presentation that includes reverential phrases that follow the mentions of Allah, messengers, prophets, angels, holy persons, their companions, and scholars of sacred knowledge – whether spoken or written – as well as phrases that follow experiences such as blessings and trials. The ritual invocation of the sacred has a powerful effect on the soul, relationships, and the spaces we inhabit.”


VOLUME 1: Principles and Foundation

The World Health Organization has delineated two primary categories of medicine in the world today: Traditional Medicine and Conventional Medicine–each with distinct paradigms, sometimes appearing to be at odds with one another.

The term “traditional” here, very simply means that which is centered on the sacred. Given that the entirety of creation pours forth from the Divine Reality, there is something of the sacred even
in non-theistic and atheistic perspectives. Thus, any modern medical paradigm can be re-rooted in the sacred. Today, the surviving systems of Traditional Medicine are the Chinese (which is the foundation for the Japanese and Korean systems), Indian, Islamic, and Tibetan. They are “systems” for the reason of being organized by detailed theoretical frameworks and practical diagnostics, applied clinically and developed over human history, preserved as various schools of thought and in seminal texts, and transmitted through the ages by living masters such that they are globally accessible.

Traditional Islamic Healing and Medicine, the least known today, is unique, among the systems of Traditional Medicine in that it has explicitly preserved a spiritual ontology in both study and practice. God, Spirit, and soul are central to any understanding of health, well being, illness, and disease.

This volume presents foundational spiritual principles which underlie health and Wholeness from the perspective of Islamic Spirituality.

How can we possibly conceive of proper treatment when we have misunderstood the very basis of illness? Thoughtful readers are likely to appreciate the universals outlined in this work.





The publication of this volume signals the revival of Traditional Islamic Healing and Medicine, and its recognition alongside Chinese, Ayurvedic, and other forms of holistic medicine. Like a polymath from a bygone era, Ḥakīm Ilyās Kāshānī draws upon many sources of knowledge, including scripture, poetry, spirituality, science, psychology, and medicine. This book reads as a sustained meditation on healing the whole human being through Islamic wisdom teachings that speak to the heart. It is an immersive process of coming into alignment with God and our true nature through the gentle, yet powerful words of a sage.
Zachary Markwith, Ph.D. The Graduate Theological Union
An important contribution to our understanding of health from an Islamic perspective. Ḥakīm Ilyās Kāshānī illuminates how the wisdom of the Qurʾān and Aḥādīth can guide us to true well-being and health. Step by step, he lays out the principles for taking responsibility for our own health.
Kabir Helminski Sufi shaykh, and author of Living Presence, The Knowing Heart, and Holistic Islam
Anyone who is seriously interested in traditional Islamic Medicine cannot afford to miss this outpouring of most profound reflections and insights into the way the Qurʾān and sayings of the Prophet Muḥammad can guide one to become a true human being, and by the same token, help one dwell in a sound body. Masterfully written in an unassuming language and with keen awareness of the universal conditions of the human state, Ḥakīm Ilyās’ present work can inspire patients, healers, and any serious spiritual seekers to further strengthen their connection to the Sacred. This book is bound to be a classic.
Tarik M. Quadir, Ph.D. Author of Traditional Islamic Environmentalism: The Vision of Seyyed Hossein Nasr
Kāshānī’s Traditional Islamic Healing and Medicine locates the message of healing in the Qurʾān, sayings of the Prophet, and Islam’s spiritual traditions. Healing means being aware of reality and living mindfully, as Kāshānī reminds us, and it requires a holistic approach, both body and soul. Organized through the letters of the Arabic alphabet, and using the author’s own insights into the Arabic, this book will be a treasure for all those interested in the Islamic tradition of inner and outer wellbeing.
Cyrus Ali Zargar, Al-Ghazali Distinguished Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Central Florida
The Persians say it well when they say, “Words that come from the heart reach the heart.” Ḥakīm Mīrzā Ilyās Kāshānī’s glowing reflections on the healing message of the Holy Qurʾān are bound to deeply resonate in the inner hearts of all those who have the good fortune of reading these luminous pages.
Pir Zia Inayat Khan, author of Saracen Chivalry, Mingled Waters, and Immortality