Before I got into Vedanta I was into Kabbalah, real -not madonna kind, and then Sufi Islam.. In fact when I started meditation I had a spirit guide....whether real or my subconscious I don't know...his name was Ibn El Rasa................and told me to take the middle way to start....So it was not a big jump when I started reading Vedanta...........Ibn El-Arabi was one of my favourites.....Tony
Ibn El-Arabi of Spain instructed his followers in this most ancient dictum (Shah 85):
There are three forms of knowledge.
The first is intellectual knowledge, which is in fact only information and the collection of facts, and the use of these to arrive at further intellectual concepts. This is intellectualism.
Second comes the knowledge of states, which includes both emotional feeling and strange states of being in which man thinks that he has perceived something supreme but cannot avail himself of it. This is emotionalism.
Third comes real knowledge, which is called the Knowledge of Reality. In this form, man can perceive what is right, what is true, beyond the boundaries of thought and sense.
Scholastics and scientists concentrate upon the first form of knowledge. Emotionalists and experientalists use the second form. Others use the two combined, or either one alternatively. But the people who attain to truth are those who know how to connect themselves with the reality which lies beyond both these forms of knowledge. These are the real Sufis, the Dervishes who have Attained.