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This work attempts to give an insight into Umm al-Barahin authored by Yusuf al-Sanusi (d.940/1490), a famous North African scholar who was not only a theologian but also a pious sufi whose life was fully dedicated to the education of his community. Al-Sanusi’s Umm al-Barahin, a short treatise on Islamic creed has greatly influenced people in many countries and has been translated into Malay and commented upon by a number of prominent Malay scholars like Muhammed Zayn al-Ashi, Zayn al-‘abidin al-Fatani and others. The Malay commentaries of the Umm al-Barahin, which elucidate and elaborate on al-Sanusi’s typology of the Divine Attributes and other related issues, prove that the Malay scholars in the past had achieved a very high degree of understanding of Islamic ontology, epistemology and metaphysics. Thus, a new modern edition and translation is needed to expose the richness of the Malay heritage which once flourished throughout the region for the sake of new generation. The work is concluded by a critique of the criticism put forward in commentaries authored by Malay writers which we will illustrate to be unstabtantiated interpretations of the original text of Umm al-Barahin.
Dr. Che’ Razi Bin Jusoh is currently Assistant Professor at the Kulliyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences (IRKHS), International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM). He held several administrative positions,such as Assistant Director of Community Services Unit, IIUM from 2002 till 2005 (managing more than 20 clubs and projects as well as involving more than 100 students programmes throughout the two years tenure with the Unit), Assistant Registrar, A&R ISTAC (2002), Research Fellow, ISTAC (2000-2002) and Junior Research Fellow, ISTAC (1997-1999). He is currently the academic advisor at the department of Fundamental and Inter-Disciplinary Studies, IRKHS, IIUM since February 2016.