Shaykh Dr Asim Yusuf, who goes by the pen-name of Talib al-Habib, is a Consultant Psychiatrist with a special interest in Islamic Spirituality and Mental Health. He is acknowledged as an authority on Islamic Psychology and is regularly invited to deliver lectures and seminars on the subject. He serves on the advisory panel of the Centre for Islam and Medicine, as well as in an advisory capacity to a number of community initiatives and charities.
He is the founder and director of the Path to Salvation Diploma in Classical Islamic Studies, the Sacred Texts Syllabus, and of the Islamic Ethics and Global Citizenship Initiative. He has authored four books on diverse aspects of Islam, with a focus on classical spirituality. He has received twenty years of rigorous theological training at the hands of leading scholars of Islamic law and spirituality. He has been granted ijazaat (formal authorizations) to instruct students in the art and science of Islamic thought by over thirty scholars from four continents, and has taught thousands of students across the country and overseas.
As a munshid, he was given by his spiritual guide the pen-name Talib al-Habib, which means ‘Seeker of the Beloved.’ His distinctive style is influenced by the mystical poetry of the Chishti spiritual order, as well as his ten year childhood association with the Manchester Boy’s Choir, where he received vocal and technical training. He began composing spiritual poetry and songs at the age of sixteen, and has continued to do so ever since. In early 2004, he was encouraged to compile an album of English-language spiritual songs, which culminated in ‘Songs of Innocence,’ an intensely personal journey into the experiential dimensions of Islam. This was followed by Rahma, a collection of nasheeds based around the wisdom of the Blessed Prophet Muhammad (s). There followed Song of the Wayfarer, in many ways an answer to Songs of Innocence, covering many of the same themes from a different perspective. All his songs are written with vocal harmonies and daff percussion.
He was born in London and grew up in Manchester, before emigrating to South Africa with his family for a ten year stay. It was here that he met his spiritual guide, Shah Ghulam Muhyi ad-Din Kazi, and began traversing the path of traditional Islam - the methodology of uniting the practical, intellectual and experiential facets of religion - under his instruction. He returned to the UK in early 2002, where he has lived ever since. Currently, he lives in the West Midlands with his family and two cats.
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