36 Facts About Khidr


Al-Khidr, transcribed as al-Khadir, Khader, Khidr, Khizr, Khazer, Khadr, Khedher, Khizir, Khizar, is a figure described but not mentioned by name in the Quran as a righteous servant of God possessing great wisdom or mystic knowledge.

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In various Islamic and non-Islamic traditions, Khidr is described as a messenger, prophet or wali, who guards the sea, teaches secret knowledge and aids those in distress.

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The figure of al-Khidr has been syncretized over time with various other figures including Duraosa and Sorush in Iran, Sargis the General and Saint George in Asia Minor and the Levant, Samael in Judaism, Elijah among the Druze, John the Baptist in Armenia, and Jhulelal in Sindh and Punjab in South Asia.

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Many mystics and some scholars, who give credence to Abu Ishaq's narration of a hadith about Khidr's meeting with Dajjal, believe that Khidr is still alive, whereas for others there are contradictory, more reliable narrations and ayahs.

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Islamic scholar Said Nursi contends that Khidr is alive, but that there are five degrees of life; Khidr is at the second degree of life, thus some religious scholars have been doubtful about it.

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The saints are those who uncover and witness the realities of creation, and the reports of their adventures with Khidr are unanimous and elucidate and point to this level of life.

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Al-Khidr is believed to be a man who has the appearance of a young adult but a long, white beard.

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Muhammad al-Bukhari reports that al-Khidr got his name after he was present over the surface of some ground that became green as a result of his presence there.

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At the beginning of the chapter, al-Tabari explains that in some variations, al-Khidr is a contemporary of the mythical Persian king Afridun, who was a contemporary of Abraham, and lived before the days of Moses.

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Al-Khidr is said to have been appointed to be over the vanguard of the king Dhul-Qarnayn the Elder, who in this version is identified as the king Afridun.

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Al-Tabari recounts that al-Khidr is said to have been the son of a man who believed in Abraham, and who emigrated with Abraham when he left Babylon.

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Al-Khidr is commonly associated with Elijah, even equated with him, and al-Tabari makes a distinction in the next account in which al-Khidr is Persian and Elijah is an Israelite.

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Al-Tabari seems more inclined to believe that al-Khidr lived during the time of Afridun before Moses, rather than traveled as Abraham's companion and drank the water of life.

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Khidr refers to a saying of Muhammad that al-Khidr was named because he sat on a white fur and it shimmered green with him.

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In Ismailism, al-Khidr is considered one of the 'permanent Imams'; that is, those who have guided people throughout history.

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In Sufi tradition, al-Khidr has come to be known as one of those who receive illumination direct from God without human mediation.

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Khidr is the hidden initiator of those who walk the mystical path, like some of those from the Uwaisi tariqa.

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Al-Khidr has had thus gained enormous reputation and popularity in the Sufi tradition due to his role as an initiator.

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Al-Khidr had thus come to symbolize access to the divine mystery itself.

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Al-Khidr was on a long search for God, until God, out of his mercy, sends the Archangel Gabriel to guide him.

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Al-Khidr recognises him as the Archangel Gabriel, and then Gabriel bestows a spiritual title upon al-Khidr, by calling him Hayat Nabi, the Eternal Life Prophet.

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Accordingly, al-Khidr is Moses' spiritual guide, who initiates Moses into the divine sciences, and reveals to him the secret mystic truth.

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Moroccan Sufi, Abdul Aziz ad-Dabbagh, insists that al-Khidr is a wali and not a prophet.

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Source of the Quranic episode of Moses's journey with Khidr has been the subject of different opinions of various scholars.

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Khidr had killed the son of another generous host, because he knew that the boy would grow to be a sinner if he reached adulthood but would go to heaven if he died before committing his sins.

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Khidr is similar to Utnapishtim in that they are both considered immortal—although the former's immortality is mentioned only in later Islamic sources, not the Qur'an—and in that Moses encounters Khidr at the "meeting place of the two waters", while Gilgamesh visits Utnapishtim at the "mouth of the waters".

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Khidr is similar to Utnapishtim in that they are both considered immortal—although the former's immortality is mentioned only in later Islamic sources, not the Qur'an—and in that Moses encounters Khidr at the "meeting place of the two waters", while Gilgamesh visits Utnapishtim at the "mouth of the waters".

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Khidr helps Sufis or wali's like Sari Saltik in their struggle with a dragon.

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Khidr often has some characteristics of a sailor, even in cultural areas which are not directly linked to the sea, like mountainous Dersim.

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In various accounts al-Khidr has been linked to the figure of Dhu al-Qarnayn, who is commonly identified as Alexander the Great.

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Al-Khidr agrees, and eventually stumbles upon the Water of Life on his own.

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Khidr's role is expanded in the 13th-century Sirat al-Iskandar, where he is Alexander's companion throughout.

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Some scholars suggest that al-Khidr is represented in the Arthurian tale Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as the Green Knight.

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In certain parts of India, al-Khidr is known as Khawaja Khidr, a river spirit of wells and streams.

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Khidr is mentioned in the Sikandar-nama as the saint who presides over the well of immortality, and is revered by both Hindus and Muslims.

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Khidr is sometimes pictured as an old man dressed in green, and is believed to ride upon a fish.

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