Course Outline

What is the Shīʿī path?  Is it a political movement that emerged in reaction to certain historical events; a manifestation of Islam characterised by protest; a school of thought?  This course provides an outline of some of the tenets of tashayyu’ (practicing the Shīʿī way) based upon the early texts and teachings of the Imams (as).  It elucidates tashayyu’ as a path of love founded upon walāya (the dynamic bond between the Divine, the messengers and imams, and those on the path ) and the transmission of hikma (light and wisdom) from the Imam to his Shīʿa. It also explores two of the key components of tashayyu’: the practice of taqīyya (precautionary dissimulation) and ʿadl (the principle of justice).


Week One:     Tawhīd, nubuwwa and walāya

Week Two:    Dimensions of the Imam

Week Three: Tashayyu’ as a path of the intellect

Week Four:   Tashayyu’ as a path of knowledge

Week Five:    The importance of love and the characteristics of the Shīʿa

Week Six:      Initiation

Week Seven:  The concept of taqiyya

Week Eight:   The concept of justice



Amir-Moezzi, Mohammad Ali. The Divine Guide in Early Shi‘ism: the Sources of Esoterism in Islam. Trans. David Streight (Albany: SUNY, 2004)

Amir-Moezzi, Mohammad Ali. The Spirituality of Shi‘i Islam (London, New York: IB Tauris in association with the Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2011)

ar-Rāzī, Ash-Shaykh Abū Ja‘far Muhammad ibn Ya‘qūb ibn Ishāq al-Kulaynī. Al-Kāfī. (Tehran: World Organization for Islamic Services, 1987, second ed.)

Corbin, Henry. En Islam iranien, Aspects spirituels et philosophiques, Vol. 1 Le shî’isme duodécimain (Éditions Gallimard, 1971)

Hamid, Idris Samawi. Islam, Sign & Creation (New York: Global Scholarly Publications, 2011)

Hamid, Idris Samawi. Islam, Station & Process (New York: Global Scholarly Publications, 2011)

Kohlberg, Etan. ‘Taqiyya in Shi‘i Theology and Religion’, in H.G. Kippenberg and G. Stroumsa (eds), Secrecy and Concealment. Studies in the History of Mediterranean and Near Eastern Religions (Leiden, 1995)

Lalani, Arzina R. Early Shī‘ī Thought (London: IB Tauris & Co. Ltd, 2000)

Rayshahri, M Muhammadi. The Scale of Wisdom: A Compendium of Shi‘a Hadith. Trans. N Virjee, A Kadhim, M Dasht Bozorgi, Z Alsalami, A Virjee. N Virjee (ed.) (London: ICAS Press, 2009)

Shirazi, Mulla Sadra. Spiritual Psychology (London: ICAS Press, 2008)

Tabarsi, Hassan ibn Fazl ibn. Mishkat al-Anwar fi Ghurar il-Akhbar [The Lamp Niche for the Best Traditions]. Trans. Ms Lisa Zaynab Morgan and Ali Peiravi (Qum: Ansariyan Publications, First Edition, 1422)


This course is at the level equivalent to a Batchelor’s degree. The rate is standard for a non-accredited short course in the Humanities.

Course date and time

Book Tenets of Tashayyu’ and arrange for classes at times that are convenient for you. The course consists of eight intensive 90 minute classes on-line, with the opportunity for you to discuss and ask questions.

The course is £130/$160.00. You can also take either just the first four weeks of the course for £65/$82, or book in two installments by making a credit card or Paypal transfer to info@light-reading.co.uk

Once you have booked, you will be sent a study pack consisting of reading materials in pdf format, and a syllabus for the course. You will also need to provide your Skype ID in order to join the weekly live class. Classes are recorded. For further information, please see the FAQs page, or contact info@onlineshiastudies.com

To book please click on the button below.

You can also order the course with one on-line tutorial for £50/$65. Study in your own time by reading the pdf Reading Packs and listening to the accompanying recorded lectures; write to the tutor with any questions. To book, please click on the button below.