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In the 8th century A.H. (14th century A.D.), during the reign of Timur, a sufi from the city of Tabriz famous for his ability to interpret dreams began the dissemination of a new faith. By emphasizing the authenticity of letters and paying great attention to their properties and mysteries, he began an interpretation of Qur'an along with its apothegm: using this method he found new meanings, which he considered to be the basis of the holy book.
Later, Fazlallah Abolfazl Astarabadi Ajami, pen named Naimi, came to be known as Fazlallah Hurufi and his followers as Hurufis. He considered himself to be the first to discover the secret of the words of divinity.He believed that the basis and origin of every object were the words of God—the individual letters (mofradaat). These are the 28 Arabic letters as well as the four letters of "P", "Ch", "Zh", "Gh" in the Farsi language, which amount to a total of 32 letters. Every pronounced noun is a combination of the said 32 letters. Within this alphabet, 14 of the letters introduce the beginning section of Qur'anic verses known as Mohkamaat or Om'olketab meaning “Indisputable”s. These letter combinations do not have any clear meaning, and the letters are read individually instead of their combined form. The remaining letters are then referred to as Allegorical (Moteshabehaat) which are dependent on the Indisputables. In other words, these letters (Mofradaat) can be divided into Mohkamat and Moteshabehat, and as every object is a combination of these letters, the words of divinity appear in them as a result of the names they are referred to as. Therefore, objects become manifests of the words of God.
Hurufis considered appearance and the appeared, name and the named, subject and object, to be of the same nature. What came to be concluded from this form of thought initiated a number of attacks from the religious figures of the time. The controversial conclusion was that "God is embodied in words and letters, and his words appear in the existence of human kind. Words of divinity are embodied within Man and he is therefore, the supreme manifestation of God himself."
By using methods such as the Jommal Calculations, numbers, and divisions of letters, Fazl began describing and translating the verses, apothegm and commandments of Qur'an. He then introduced a new school of thought based on Qur'an's framework that differed from the common teachings of Islam. His books include Javdan Nameh, Nom Nameh, Mohabbat Nameh and Marsh Nameh.
Afterwards, he invited Timur the Lame to his new faith and philosophy; though upon seeking the consult of his religious advisers, the King refused and bid the execution of Fazl. Following his death, Fazl's disciples and successors continued the spread of Hurufism, which eventually led to the ramification of various sects. Among the most significant of those is the group of Noghtavian, which is also known as Pasikhanian.
The continuous proclamations of religious leaders against Hurufis as well as the King himself, caused them to be suppressed and executed for many years. Despite their calamities however, the Hurufi school of thought was revived once again and continues to survive to this day. While this movement had at first originated in Iran, its followers now exist in Turkey, by the name of Baktashi.