Consequently, they focus on directly experiencing God through ecstatic practice in order to efface the obstructing self. ", Tell, C. '"A poet and a mystic: Jalaluddin Rumi. eval(ez_write_tag([[580,400],'newworldencyclopedia_org-large-mobile-banner-2','ezslot_6',169,'0','0'])); Some Sufi orders engage in ritualized dhikr ceremonies, the liturgy of which may include recitation, singing, instrumental music, dance, costumes, incense, meditation, ecstasy, and trance. Non-Muslims often mistake Sufism as a sect of Islam. Most importantly, however, it is an invitation to meaningfulness and well-being. Another suggested origin is from "Ashab al-Suffa" ("Companions of the Veranda") or "Ahl al-Suffa" ("People of the Veranda"), who were a group of Muslims during the time of the Prophet Muhammad that spent much of their time on the veranda of the Prophet's mosque devoted to prayer. The essence of Being/Truth/God is devoid of every specific form and quality, and hence unmanifested, yet it is inseparable from every form and phenomenon either material or spiritual. One major figure and catalyst in its growth was the female mystic Rabiah al-Adawiyah (died 801), who emphasized the absolute love for Allah above everything else. Sufis talk about annihilating themselves in the Beloved through the path of love. eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'newworldencyclopedia_org-large-mobile-banner-1','ezslot_3',167,'0','0']));eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'newworldencyclopedia_org-large-mobile-banner-1','ezslot_4',167,'0','1']));eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'newworldencyclopedia_org-large-mobile-banner-1','ezslot_5',167,'0','2'])); Qawwali is a form of devotional Sufi music common in Pakistan, North India, Afganistan, Iran and Turkey. Zakhor serves the same purpose in Kabbalah as Dhikr serves in Sufism. 1 Islamic mystics are called Sufis and their way of life is Sufism (also spelled Sufiism). Emerging duing the eighth century C.E. The Sufis are the men of the highest morality. ", Loutfy, N., and G. Berguno. Here is an excerpt taken from one of their descriptions of God: Sufism – What is the Christian view of Sufism?Sufism presents God as one who is indefinable. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.”John 1:18: “No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.” While the Sufis whirl around chanting during their zikr, giving themselves over to total abandonment, vulnerability, and susceptibility, we who believe in Jesus Christ offer up our worship with soberness and joy. Even today, many of the traditional Islamic universities like Al-Azhar endorse Sufism as a part of the religion of Islam. More generally, any activity in which the Muslim maintains awareness of God is considered dhikr. … Sufis have endured persecution over the years due to their unconventional and controversial approach to Allah, which has been perceived by some to be blasphemous. God alone possesses reality and provides the reality to everything else in the world (Chittick, 2000, p. 12). Kabbalists also use a practice called Zakhor which in Hebrew literally means remembrance. It is and must be a way out of the labyrinth of a secular, commercial culture. Sufis make extensive use of parable, allegory, and metaphor to express divine longing and mystical experience. Others included Jalal al-Din Muhammad Rumi, founder of the Mevlevi order in Turkey, Sahabuddin Suharwardi in Asia minor, and Moinuddin Chishti in India. It is often referred to by Sufis themselves or by Orientalistsas “Islamic mysticism”, in order to give the impression that Islam is eitherwholly or partly an dogmatic religion with a set of meaningless rituals. This period (especially the thirteenth century) is considered to be the "Golden Age" of Sufism. Another order, called the Kubrawiya order, originated in Central Asia. The purification of the elementary passionate nature (Tazkiya-I-Nafs), followed by cleansing of the spiritual heart so that it may acquire a mirror-like purity of reflection (Tazkiya-I-Qalb) and become the receptacle of God's love (Ishq), illumination of the spirit (Tajjali-I-Ruh) fortified by emptying of egoic drives (Taqliyya-I-Sirr) and remembrance of God's attributes (Dhikr), and completion of journey with purification of the last two faculties, Khafi and Akhfa. They followed a lifestyle of modesty, temperance, contentment and the denial of luxury. Others have derived sufi from the word saff; this refers to the sufis’ “first rank” before God. If Hallaj had said, “He is the Real,” that too is duality, for there can’t be “He” without “I.” Hence, Hallaj said, “I am the Real” to acknowledge other than God, nothing else existed. ", Semaan, K. "Islamic mysticism in modern Arabic poetry and drama. Sufism (from Arabic (صوف), Suf meaning "wool") is a mystical tradition of Islam dedicated to experiencing Allah/God as the epitome of divine Love. At the seventh stage, the Sufi is said to see everything as a manifestation of God and is stripped of all notions of culture, race and ideology (Safi, 2003). The vow of obedience to the Shaykh or Qutb which is taken by Sufis is considered incompatible with devotion to the Imam". In thi… Sufi Beliefs Sufis seek the truth of divine love and knowledge through direct personal experience with God. Most of the Senegalese population is made up of Muslims who practice Sunni Islam that is based on the Ash'arite deity and the Malikite philosophy. Jesus Christ came to make the lofty God knowable to all mankind.Hebrews 1:3: “The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. Sufis consider love for family, friends, material goods, or even Paradise all to be distractions from the love of God (Chittick, 2000). Sufism, or Taṣawwuf (الْتَّصَوُّف‎), variously defined as "Islamic mysticism", "the inward dimension of Islam" or "the phenomenon of mysticism within Islam", is mysticism in Islam, "characterized ... [by particular] values, ritual practices, doctrines and institutions" which began very early in Islamic history and represents "the main manifestation and the most important and In the second stage, Sufis were to practice righteous actions as prescribed by the holy Qur'an, and the further rigors of asceticism. Seyyedeh Dr. Nahid Angha. As is stated, “Sufism today is a name without a reality that was once a reality without a name." Humans can achieve this love if they give themselves entirely to the Allah's will (Abdin, 2004). "There are three ways of knowing a thing. Love allows the believer to seize the spiritual beauty of God that is present in all things, and therefore love God in all things and love all things through God (Abdin, 2004). The controversy surrounding Sufism is perhaps best exemplified by Mansur al-Hallaj, who identified himself by one of the names of Allah—‘Ana Al-haqq,’ which means “I am the truth, I am the Reality or I am God.” These words had him branded as a blasphemer, and authorities in Baghdad ordered him to execution (Chittick, 2000; Tell, 2002; Waines, 2003; Abdin, 2004). Sufis believe that excessive rationalism blocks human understanding of God's immersive and loving nature. To cite this article click here for a list of acceptable citing formats.The history of earlier contributions by wikipedians is accessible to researchers here: The history of this article since it was imported to New World Encyclopedia: Note: Some restrictions may apply to use of individual images which are separately licensed. likened some states to intoxication which is forbidden in Islam). Affirming this sentiment, the great female Sufi Rabi’a Al Adawiyya said, “I love God: I have no time left in which to hate the devil.” (Abdin, 2004). ... you may answer: 'Sufism is the religion of the heart, the religion in which the most important thing is to seek God in the heart of humanity.'" It is simply the esoteric, the inner kernel of Islam. It is interesting to note that the practice of Muraqaba and Dhikr have very close resemblance with the practices of the Jewish mystics. This is an interesting ceremony, which by far, is the most important principle of Sufism as it is common among all Sufi Orders. They are not bound by the shackles of rituals and customs. A khalwa may be prescribed by the shaykh (spiritual advisor) of the murid or talib (student). Sufism is a series of concepts and practices that rangefrom poverty, seclusion, deception, depriving the soul, singing and dancing;and is based on a mix of many different religions and philosophiessuch as Greek philosophies, Zoroastrianism, Buddhism,Hinduism, as well as Islam. According to Moojan Momen "one of the most important doctrines of Sufism is the concept of the "Perfect Man" (al-Insan al-Kamil). His disciple, Al-Kharraz, (890 – 891 C.E. Sufism as a whole is primarily concerned with direct personal experience, and as such may be compared to other forms of religious mysticism. Sufi practices have their foundation in purity of life, strict obedience to Islamic law and imitation of the Prophet. Sufism as a whole is primarily concerned with direct personal experience, and as such may be compared to other forms of religious mysticism. Credit is due under the terms of this license that can reference both the New World Encyclopedia contributors and the selfless volunteer contributors of the Wikimedia Foundation. People of ascetic temperaments were found throughout Muslim communities early in the history of Islam. Khalwa refers to a form of retreat, once widespread but now less common. Sufism (from Arabic (صوف), Suf meaning "wool") is a mystical tradition of Islam dedicated to experiencing Allah/God as the epitome of divine Love.Sufis can be associated with Shi'a Islam, Sunni Islam, other currents of Islam, or a combination of multiple traditions.Emerging duing the eighth century C.E. Islamic mystics are called Sufis and their way of life is Sufism (also spelled Sufiism). Sufis believe that they are in a prominent position in relation to God. ". Sufi poets describe the experience of God’s presence in beautiful, unconventional and even shocking ways, which could offend the conventionally pious (Omaima, 1994). These are all among the earliest of the Sufi orders. In recent times, the teachings of Sufism have spread to the West and Sufi writings have become best-selling works. Sufism takes “doing the beautiful” as its especial domain, which is based on submission and faith (Chittick, 2000). ", White, C. "Sufism in Medieval Hindi literature. Similar examples include Moses' going into seclusion for 40 days in a cave in Mt. From 1200-1500 C.E., Sufism experienced an era of increased activity in various parts of the Islamic world. Their practices included fasting, wearing light clothing in the depths of winter, or withdrawing themselves from the world. It is often understood to imply that every phenomenon is an aspect of Truth and at the same time attribution of existence to it is false. ‘He has treated all the most important features of Sufism with a degree of profundity and understanding rarely to be found among modern writers.’ Religion. The Sufis believe that the highest form of human love is the pure love for the Divine. (Touma 1996, p.162). Muhammad, for example, used to retreat to the cave where he received his first inspiration—but had been going there for many years prior to his meeting with the angel Gabriel. Building on these notions, Sufism developed several key doctrines including Wahdat (meaning "Unity"), which affirms the Oneness of Allah (tawhid), and Tawakkal (meaning "absolute trust in God"). All created beings carry within themselves, or more precisely within their spiritual being, the spiritual presence of God. 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