After the early period of Islamic history during which the major intellectual and religious perspectives were crystallized and delineated, there is no figure in Islamic intellectual life who has left as much influence upon the later theosophical and philosophical schools of Islam as Suhrawardi, except for Ibn 'Arabi, who was almost his contemporary and whose influence in the eastern lands of Islam was often concurrent with that of Shaykh al-ishraq (the 'Master of Ishraq'). YaI:tya ibn I:Iabash Amirak Suhrawardi, known in Persia as Shaykh al-ishraq, lived but thirty-eight years, having been born in Suhraward near Zanjan in 549/1155 and martyred in Aleppo in 587/1191. With the account of this short but meteoric career we are not concerned here' nor do we propose to analyse the tenets of the new 'Theosophy of the Orient of Light' (lJikmat alishraq) established by him. 20ur task is to survey the manner in which his ideas spread and the effect they had upon subsequent phases of intellectuallife primarily in the East but also in the West.