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Article

The Ibtihalat in the Digital Age: Public and Private Domains

Yale Institute of Sacred Music, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06511, USA
Academic Editor: Heather MacLachlan
Religions 2021, 12(10), 866; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12100866
Received: 2 August 2021 / Revised: 13 September 2021 / Accepted: 15 September 2021 / Published: 13 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Music in World Religions)
One of the most popular cultures in Islam is the genre of “hymns” or “invocations” (pl. ibtihalat, sing. ibtihal), which has recently been amplified on social media platforms. The ibtihalat are Arabic short poems performed by a sheikh known as the “supplicator” (mubtahil). They air regularly on Arabic TV stations and more frequently on radio stations, especially those broadcasting about the Qur’an, its recitation, and its interpretation. In Egypt, the Qur’an’s radio station, which has millions of followers, launched a YouTube station that airs ibtihalat before and after dawn prayer daily. The viewership of one ibtihal like that of Sheikh Sayyid al-Naqshabandi’s “My Lord” (Mawlay) reached 11 million on YouTube. The ibtihalat are also integral parts of Islamic festivities during the two Eids and Ramadan. Focusing on al-Naqshabandi’s ibtihal “My Lord” (Mawlay), this paper discusses the genre of Islamic hymns as a popular culture approach to study Islam as a lived experience based on the inclusion, not the elimination, of difference. To that end, I explore how the ibtihal becomes a domain for contemplating the place of the self in the present moment without the gaze of authority and how this reconfiguration of authority within the self has deep roots in the Islamic notion of “unicity of God” (tawhid). View Full-Text
Keywords: Islam; music; Ibtihalat; Islamic hymns; al-Ghazali; al-Nashabandi; Baligh Hamdi Islam; music; Ibtihalat; Islamic hymns; al-Ghazali; al-Nashabandi; Baligh Hamdi
MDPI and ACS Style

Abdelfattah, H.A. The Ibtihalat in the Digital Age: Public and Private Domains. Religions 2021, 12, 866. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12100866

AMA Style

Abdelfattah HA. The Ibtihalat in the Digital Age: Public and Private Domains. Religions. 2021; 12(10):866. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12100866

Chicago/Turabian Style

Abdelfattah, Heba A. 2021. "The Ibtihalat in the Digital Age: Public and Private Domains" Religions 12, no. 10: 866. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12100866

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