Khalwa (Arabic: خلوة, also khalwat; lit., "solitude"; pronounced in Iran, "khalvat"; spelling in Turkish, halvet) has several meanings in Sufism, Islamic jurisprudence, and the Druze religion, which in some way derive from the concept of being alone or withdrawing from the world.


Main article: Retreat (spiritual) § Sufi retreats or spiritual khalwa

In Sufism, a solitary retreat, traditionally for forty days, during which a disciple does extensive spiritual exercises under the direction of a shaykh.[1]

A Sufi murid will enter the khalwa spiritual retreat under the direction of a shaykh for a given period, sometimes for as long as 40 days, emerging only for salah (daily prayers) and, usually, to discuss dreams, visions and live with the shaykh. Once a major element of Sufi practice, khalwa has become less frequent in recent years.

It is the act of total self-abandonment in desire for the Divine Presence. In complete seclusion, the Sufi continuously repeats the name of God as a highest form of dhikr, remembrance of God. Then, "Almighty God will spread before him the degrees of the kingdom as a test".

Other Sufi uses include:

See also


  1. ^ "Mevlevi Terms and Definitions".
  2. ^ Revealed: chaining, beatings and torture inside Sudan's Islamic schools The Guardian, 2020