Newsletter November-December 2022

After two years without a celebration of Mawlid due to COVID-19, on Tuesday November 22ⁿᵈ Egyptian Sufis from towns and villages, both near and far, came to Islamic Cairo in the tens of thousands to celebrate the birth of Ḥusayn, whose head is believed to rest in the shrine of the mosque that bears his name. Young and old alike gathered and rejoiced together. As always, they had taken to the narrow streets of the city marked with its Fatimid architectural style, as well as filling its neighboring cemeteries. It was a festive gathering, with an atmosphere of popular piety where the dancing night vibrates and sings to the rhythm of tambourines sounding at high decibels, as praises of the grandson of the Prophet soar to reach the heights of the Ineffable. For as the ḥadīṯ inscribed on the walls of the mosque says, “he who loves Ḥusayn loves God”. This, as Father Bannerth pointed out in his time, is the meaning of this swinging movement amidst the random crackling flames and waves that flood a world still very much alive. These men, sometimes with a few women in their midst, light improvised fire-pits and string illuminated garlands between alleys, tombs and mausoleums. In this serene movement, they adore God and only God, with all their whole heart and body. Such are still the Egyptian Sufis*.

* See Bannerth, ‘Dhikr and Khalwa after Ibn ʿAṭāʾ Allāh’, MIDÉO 12, 1974.

Lectures and talks

From November 3ʳᵈ to 4ᵗʰ, Mr. Dominique Avon participated in the conference “Hermeneutics in Contemporary Islam. Theology, exegesis and philosophy in Sunnism and duodecimal Shiism”, moderated by Mr. Rainer Brunner and Mr. Constance Arminjon and organized at the École Pratique des Hautes Études. During this conference he gave a talk entitled “Sunni Men of Religion and Secular Qurʾānic Studies (1950s‒1980s)”.

From November 3ʳᵈ to 5ᵗʰ, Jean Druel, OP took part in the 6ᵗʰ Foundations of Arabic Linguistics conference in Roma Tre University. He presented a paper entitled “How did Sībawayh’s Kitāb become Kitāb Sībawayh?: Canonization and transmission of grammar during the first five Hijri centuries”.

On November 9ᵗʰ, Adrien Candiard, OP participated in the conference “Ibn Taymiyya’s Thought: Corpus, Reception and Legacy” in Aix-en-Provence. He presented communication entitled: “Ibn Taymiyya and the God of the Philosophers: the refutation of Ṯābit Ibn Qurra’s (d. in 288/901) Talḫīṣ of Aristotle’s Metaphysics”.

On November 10ᵗʰ, Jean Jacques Pérennès gave a lecture on the history of the construction of the Georges Anawati Library, on the 20ᵗʰ anniversary of the new library of the IDEO.

On November 16ᵗʰ and 17ᵗʰ, the conference “Animals as Worshipers of God First and Foremost. On Animal Piety in Islam” was held in the Orient and Mediterranean laboratory in Paris (Campus CNRS of Villejuif) under the scientific direction of Guillaume de Vaulx, and with the participation of speakers coming from Germany, England, Algeria, Egypt, and Palestine. During this conference, animals have been manifested as part of the creation that adores its creator.


From November 8ᵗʰ to 10ᵗʰ, Mrs. Engy Elgammal, the cataloging director at the IDEO’s library, participated in the 9ᵗʰ Sharjah International Library Conference, organized by The American Library Association (ALA) and The Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF). During this conference, she led a full day workshop entitled “Capturing history as it happens, role of the Dominican Institute Library, towards the research community”.

Thanks to “Maʿan” channel, you can listen and watch again the lectures of Jean Jacques Pérennès, OP on the history of the library, of Mr. Aziz Hilal, Emmanuel Pisani, OP and Adrien Candiard, OP on ecology and Islamic heritage. You can support IDEO by becoming a member of the association the Friends of IDEO and thus help the Institute to continue its work of research and consolidation of interreligious connections, and offer a tool of excellence for researchers from all over the world through its specialized library (in France, your contribution entitles you to a 66% tax deduction).

Publication of the MIDEO

We are pleased to announce the publication of the latest issue of MIDEO (37, 2022), dedicated to Reciting in the early Islamic Empire. It is fully available online.


On November 10ᵗʰ, we welcomed Mr. David Sadoulet, Cooperation and Cultural Action Counselor and Director of the French Institute in Egypt.

On November 22ⁿᵈ, we welcomed Mr. Mostafa Abdelrazik, former editor of the Egyptian journal al-Wafd.

On November 29ᵗʰ, we welcomed Mr. Nawwaf al-Hakami, associate professor of Arabic linguistics at Najran University, Saudi Arabia.

On November 30ᵗʰ, we welcomed Mr. Hamza Hindawi, from the Emirati Journal The National.

Scholars’ House

During the month of November, we had the pleasure to receive in the Scholar’s House Mr. Denys Bourguignat, responsible for the publication of the The Friends of the IDEO’s Newsletter; Mr. Fabien Revol, lecturer at the Catholic University of Lyon and specialist in theology of ecology.


  • Dennis Halft, « Jede Begegnung verändert uns selbst. Ein neuer Master “Interreligiöse Studien: Judentum, Christentum, Islam” startet in Trier », Diakonia 53, 4, 2022, pp. 270‒272 (interview avec W. Kirchhoff).
  • Emmanuel Pisani, « Bulletin d’Islamologie (IX) », Revue des sciences philosophiques et théologiques 3, tome 106, 2022, pp. 545‒566.
  • Dominique Avon, « Le shaykh Yūsuf al-Qaraḍāwī (1926-2022) », Observatoire des Religions et de la Laïcité, novembre 2022.

Upcoming activities

On December 9ᵗʰ, Adrien Candiard, OP will defend his PhD thesis in Paris, the subject of which is “The concept of Truth in Ibn Taymiyya’s Darʾ taʿāruḍ al-ʿaql wa-l-naql”.

On December 14ᵗʰ, a seminar session will be held on the topic of “The salaf as a source of religious knowledge in the early tafāsīr”. This seminar is organized by the IDEO as part of the series of seminars entitled “The salaf in the Classical Age. Building an Authority Figure” and will take place in the seminar room at 5:00 p.m. Click here to download the program of this series of seminars…


On the 15ᵗʰ of June, the general assembly of the association Friends of IDEO took place. Much more than a mere administrative formality, it represented

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