The Sahliyya - an authoritative copy of the Dala'il Al Khayrat

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The Dala'il Al Khayrat is one of the most widespread Islamic books. Manuscripts have been found throughout the Islamic world, from The Maghreb, where it originated, all the way to South East Asia and East Turkestan.

The Sahliyya
After Imam Al Jazuli composed the Dala'il Al Khayrat, he spent some years refining it. After refining it, he presented a definitive version of the text to his disciple, Muhammad Al Sughayyir Al Sahli (d. 917 AH). This copy, known as the Sahliyya became the master copy and model for subsequent editions of the Dala'il Al Khayrat.

Lost manuscripts
Most scholars agree that the original manuscript of the Sahliyya have not survived to the present day, but there some known manuscripts which were copies of the Sahliyya. In addition, there are many mentions of the Sahliyya in various manuscripts of the Dala'il Al Khayrat. In manuscripts of the Dala'il Al Khayrat produced between the 16th and late-19th centuries, which feature annotations added by the copyist on the margins of the main text, there are many references to the Sahliyya. When a copyist commented on a particular verse of the Dala'il Al Khayrat, the following formulation is appears: "this is how it appears in the Sahliyya copy as well as in other copies."

One of the reasons there are some slight textual differences in editions of the Dala'il Al Khayrat is that it started spreading between the time Imam Al Jazuli first composed it, and the time he presented a definitive version to al Sahli. The Sahliyya is considered the most authoritative version of the Dala'il Al Khayrat.

Sources: Muḥammad ibn Sulaymān al-Jazūlī and the Place of Dalāʾil al-Khayrāt in Jazūlite Sufism (Cornell), Paths of Prayers in Ottoman North Africa (Beyazit)

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