Almost all visitors of works of Islamic architecture agree about a special quality that touched them deep inside in the direct experience of these places. This internal experience of quality, not necessarily restricted to encounters with works of Islamic architecture, has been rarely discussed and somehow been neglected in general studies or theories of architecture. Therefore, the main purpose of this paper is to disambiguate this concept with reference to Islamic mysticism, and then explain it in the architectural discourse. In this way, it can be stated that a work of architecture, like all natural and artificial phenomena in the cosmos, is a being of multiple ranks of existence. According to the doctrine of levels of existence (maratib al-wujud), place is an essence that corresponds to rank among levels. The quality and quantity (forma and materia) of place are two complementary aspects of its exterior existence, representing its essential rank. The main point is that between the two exterior aspects of place, quality is higher in rank than quantity, and it is affected by and directly related to its essence. Therefore, we can acknowledge that the deep effect felt in the presence of Islamic architectural works is primarily because of the living essence of these places that would permeate the visitors through the multiple levels of the quality of that place.
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