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Batin (باطن) is defined as the interior or hidden meaning of the Quran. This is in contrast to the Quran's exterior or apparent meaning (the Zahir). Some Muslim groups believe that the bāṭen can only be fully understood and interpreted by a figure with esoteric knowledge, who for Shia Muslims is the Imam of the Time.
In a wider sense, bāṭen can refer to the inner meaning or reality behind all existence, the ẓāher being the world of form and apparent meaning. It may also refer to the unseen world of angels and jinns as described in the Quran. In short, anything that is hidden as opposed to that which is evident is bāṭen or hidden and unseen.
- Bektashi Order, another group focusing just like Alevis on Batin and Zahir
- Esoteric interpretation of the Quran
- Daftary, Farhad (2000). Intellectual traditions in Islam New York: St. Martins Press. ISBN 186064760X . page 90.
- Gleave, Robert (2011). Islam and literalism: Literal meaning and interpretation in Islamic legal theory. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 0748631135. Page 64.
- Radtke, B. "BĀṬEN". Encyclopedia Iranica. Retrieved 9 July 2014.
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