The chapter starts by addressing Paul Nwyia’s proposal that istinbāṭ (extracting, unearthing, inferring) is a mystical exegetical practice distinctive of Ṣūfism. Exploring the use of this term reveals that it is not at all exclusive to Ṣūfism but has been hailed as a valued inferential practice by a wide range of Muslim scholars. What Ṣūfīs do emphasize, however, is this: understanding sacred language in scripture and tradition requires a special contemplative attention. This is contingent on cultivating the practice of ‘good listening’ (istimāʿ). Thus, alongside the exegetical tools developed by scholars of tafsīr, ḥadīth and fiqh, Ṣūfī sources from early on highlight an alternative approach, which is individual and inspirational. Ṣūfīs describe mystical understanding as open-ended and boundless: “it has countless faces”. Albeit presented by Ṣūfī authors as an indispensable means for a sound understanding of God’s words, the practice of ‘attentive listening’ (istimāʿ), rather than the ceremonial practice of samāʿ, is an understudied Ṣūfī practice. Exploring the relevant sources throws light on the centrality of this ancient hermeneutical practice in Islamic mysticism.