The End - 2000 to 2009

My sister showed me this article. Very intresting, but with a lot of incorrect statistics and false facts. Although I must say that this historical heritage of jihad is dead amongst many of the Sufis of today.

Mystical power
Why Sufi Muslims, for centuries the most ferocious soldiers of Islam, could be our most valuable allies in the fight against extremism
By Philip Jenkins | January 25, 2009

THIRTY YEARS AGO this month, the collapse of the Shah’s government marked the launch of Iran’s Islamic Revolution, and since that point the topic of Islam has rarely been out of the headlines. All too often, we hear about Islam in the context of intolerance and, often, violence — of Al Qaeda savagery, of Taliban misogyny, of nuclear weapons in Pakistan and perhaps in Iran itself. Even in Europe, many fear the growth of a radical Islamic presence. For three decades, Western observers have worked fervently to comprehend Islam’s global power and appeal, its ability to inspire the poor and to topple governments. But in all that intense attention, most observers have missed a crucial part of the story: a global web of devout religious brotherhoods that by all logic should be a critical ally against extremism.

Sufis are the power that has made Islam the world’s second-largest religion, with perhaps 1.2 billion adherents. Not a sect of Islam, but rather heirs of an ancient mystical tradition within both the Sunni and Shia branches of the faith, Sufis have through the centuries combined their inward quest with the defense and expansion of Islam worldwide. At once mystics and elite soldiers, dervishes and preachers, charismatic wonder-workers and power-brokers, ascetic Sufis have always been in the vanguard of Islam. While pushing forward the physical borders of Islam, they have been essential to the spiritual and cultural fullness of the faith. Today, the Sufi tradition is deeply threaded through the power structures of many Muslim countries, and the orders are enjoying a worldwide renaissance.

To look at Islam without seeing the Sufis is to miss the heart of the matter. Without taking account of the Sufis, we cannot understand the origins of most contemporary political currents in the Middle East and Muslim South Asia, and of many influential political parties. We can’t comprehend the huge popular appeal of Islam for

women, who so often seem excluded from Muslim life. Sufis are central to the ability of Muslim communities to survive savage persecutions — in Chechnya, in Kosovo — and then launch devastating insurgencies. They are the muscle and sinew of the faith.

And, however startling this may seem, these very Sufis — these dedicated defenders and evangelists of mystical Islam — are potentially vital allies for the nations of the West. Many observers see a stark confrontation between the West and Islam, a global conflict that entered a traumatic new phase with the Iranian revolution. But that perspective ignores basic conflicts within the Muslim world itself, a global clash of values over the nature of religious practice, no less than overtly political issues. For the Islamists — for hard-line fundamentalists like the Saudi Wahhabis and the Taliban — the Sufis are deadly enemies, who draw on practices alien to the Quran. Where Islamists rise to power, Sufis are persecuted or driven underground; but where Sufis remain in the ascendant, it is the radical Islamist groups who must fight to survive.

Around the world, the Sufis are struggling against violent fundamentalists who are at once their deadly foes, and ours. To look at Islam without seeing the Sufis is to be ignorant of a crucial clash of civilizations in today’s world: not the conflict between Islam and the West, but an epochal struggle within Islam itself.

If the word “Sufi” conjures up any images for Americans, they normally involve mystical poetry or dance. Thirteenth century poet Rumi was a legendary Sufi, as are Turkey’s whirling dervishes. But these are just the most visible expressions of a movement that runs deeply through the last thousand years of Islam.

Emerging around the year 800, they were originally pious devotees, whose poor woolen clothes showed their humility: “Sufi” comes from the Arabic word for wool. Above all, the Sufis sought the divine reality or ultimate truth that stands above all the illusions and deceptions of the material world. In order to achieve ecstatic union with God, they incorporated techniques of sound and movement — chanting and music, swaying and dance. Believers joined in tight-knit brotherhoods or tariqahs, each following a charismatic leader (shaykh). Among the dozens of these orders, a few grew to achieve special influence, and some operate in dozens of nations, including the United States.

But the orders are more than confraternities of pious devotees. Early in their history, Sufis developed a powerful military streak, making them the knights of Islam, as well as the monks and mystics. Like the Japanese samurai, the brotherhoods trained their followers to amazing feats of devotion and overcoming pain. Fanatical dervish warriors were the special forces of every Islamic army from the 13th century through the end of the 19th.

The expansion of Islam outside the core areas of the Middle East is above all a Sufi story. Sufi orders led the armies that conquered lands in Central and South Asia, and in Southeastern Europe; through their piety and their mysticism, the brotherhoods then won the local populations over to Islam. They presented an Islam that incorporated local traditions and worship styles, including Christian saints and Hindu gods. Today, Sufi styles and practices dominate in the non-Arab Muslim world: in India and Pakistan, in Indonesia and Malaysia, Nigeria and Senegal, and in the Muslim countries of Central Asia, such as Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.

Over the centuries, the territories where Sufi orders seeded Islam have evolved from the faith’s frontiers to its demographic heartlands. These regions now encompass Islam’s largest and fastest-growing populations. Of the eight nations with the world’s largest Muslim communities, only one (Egypt) is Arab. A fifth of the world’s Muslims today identify with Sufism, and for many millions more, Sufism is simply part of the air they breathe.

The Sufi orders enhanced their political role as Western empires encroached. When Islam was under threat, the Sufis were the trained soldiers, and their close-knit brotherhoods allowed them to form devastatingly effective resistance movements. Sufi orders led anti-colonial movements from Morocco to Indonesia. Most Americans, for instance, have heard of the stubborn Chechen guerrillas, but few realize how absolutely this movement is rooted in Sufism. When the Russians pushed south into Muslim lands in the 19th century, the heroic Sufi sheikh Imam Shamil launched a decades-long guerrilla war. Even Stalin’s terror campaigns could not root out the Sufi brotherhoods. The fearsome leader of modern-day Chechen resistance, Shamil Basayev, was named for the original imam.

A similar story can be told of other oppressed peoples, in Kurdistan, Kashmir, Albania, Kosovo, and elsewhere, who owed their solidarity and cohesion to the immense power of the Sufi brotherhoods.

The Sufis might sound like America’s worst nightmare. Not only do they ground political activism in religion, but their faith spreads through intense and secretive brotherhoods, led by charismatic masters: this recalls every sinister stereotype of Muslim fanaticism that potboiler thrillers have offered us over the decades. But it would be a terrible mistake to see the Sufis as enemies. Sufis certainly have fought Western forces through the years, and Sufi-founded movements have on occasion engaged in terrorist actions — witness the Chechens. But in the vast majority of cases, such militancy has been essentially defensive, resisting brutal colonial occupations. This is very different from the aggressive global confrontation pursued by groups such as Al Qaeda.

Today, moreover, Sufi brotherhoods face a deadly danger from the strict puritanical or fundamentalist Islam represented by Qaeda and similar movements, which are as threatening to the Sufi brotherhoods as they are to the West. To the extent that we, like the Sufis, face a real danger from violent jihadi fundamentalism, our interests are closely aligned with those of the Sufis.

But the Sufis are much more than tactical allies for the West: they are, potentially, the greatest hope for pluralism and democracy within Muslim nations. The Sufi religious outlook has little of the uncompromising intolerance that characterizes the fundamentalists. They have no fear of music, poetry, and other artistic forms — these are central to their sense of the faith’s beauty — and the brotherhoods cherish intellectual exploration. Progressive Sufi thinkers are quite open to modern knowledge and science.

From their beginnings, too, Sufi traditions have been religiously inclusive. Wherever the orders flourish, popular Islamic religion focuses on the tombs of saints and sheikhs, who believers venerate with song and ritual dance. In fact, they behave much like traditional-minded Catholics do when they visit their own shrines in Mexico or southern Italy. People organize processions, they seek healing miracles, and women are welcome among the crowds. While proudly Islamic, Sufi believers have always been in dialogue with other great religions.

This open-mindedness contrasts with the much harsher views of the fundamentalists, who we know by various names. Salafism claims to teach a return to the pure religion taught by the prophet Muhammad in the seventh century, and in that early Islamic community Salafis think they can find all they need to know about life and law. The most powerful and best-known version of this back-to-basics ideology is the Wahhabi movement that emerged in the 18th century, and which in modern times has built a worldwide presence on the strength of Saudi oil money. At its most extreme, this exclusive tradition rejects knowledge that is not clearly rooted in the Quran and Islamic legal thought, and regards other religions and cultures as dangerous rivals lacking any redeeming virtues. Al Qaeda and its affiliates represent an extreme and savage manifestation of this fundamentalist current.

As fundamentalist Islam spreads around the world, Sufism is one of its targets, even in such strongholds as Indonesia, Pakistan, and Nigeria. Often this comes in the form of ideological struggle, but open violence has broken out as well. Sudan’s Islamist government attacks the black Sufi population of Darfur; in Iraq, suicide bombers target Sufi centers. Sufis have literally everything to lose from the continued advance of the Islamist extremists.

But Sufis are anything but passive victims, and in their resilience lies their true importance to the West. In many nations, Sufi brotherhoods exercise influence within local regimes, and those alliances allow them to drive back radicalism. Sufi brotherhoods have emerged as critical supporters of government in several post-Communist regimes, including in former Yugoslav regions like Kosovo and Bosnia, and in Albania. When a Qaeda-affiliated Islamist movement arose in Uzbekistan, the government’s intimate alliance with the Sufi orders allowed it to destroy the insurgents quite thoroughly. Syria cultivates tolerant-minded Sufi orders as the best means of fending off Islamist subversion. For similar reasons, even the Chinese government openly favors Sufism. Hard as they try, fundamentalist radicals find it impossible to gain much of a foothold in societies where Islam is synonymous with Sufism, and where Sufi loyalty is deeply tied to cultural and national identity.

In 2007, the influential RAND Corporation issued a major report titled “Building Moderate Muslim Networks,” which urged the US government to form links with Muslim groups that opposed Islamist extremism. The report stressed the Sufi role as moderate traditionalists open to change, and thus as potential allies against violence.

Some Western nations are just now grasping the rich rewards that would come from an alliance with the Sufi, with Muslim forces who can claim such impeccable historical and religious credentials. The British government especially has befriended the Sufi orders, and has made groups like the British Muslim Forum and the Sufi Muslim Council its main conversation partners in the Muslim community.

Sufis, better than anyone, can tell disaffected young Muslims that the quest for peace is not a surrender to Western oppression, still less a betrayal of Islam, but rather a return to the faith’s deepest roots. And while Sufis have religious reasons for favoring peaceful and orderly societies, they also stand to benefit mightily from government support in their struggle against the fanatics. As the fundamentalists have expanded, they press hard on Muslim populations who are overwhelmingly drawn from countries where the Sufi current has always dominated Islamic life, from Pakistan, Turkey, and North Africa.

If this British model works, it would encourage the growth of a Euro-Islam that could reconcile easily with modernity and democracy, while yielding nothing of its religious content.

Nobody is pretending that building bridges with Sufis will resolve the many problems that divide the West from the Islamic world. In countries like Afghanistan or Somalia, warfare and violence might be so deeply engraved into the culture that they can never be expunged. Yet in so many lands, reviving Sufi traditions provide an effective bastion against terrorism, much stronger than anything the West could supply by military means alone. The West’s best hope for global peace is not a decline or secularization of Islam, but rather a renewal and strengthening of that faith, and above all of its spiritual and mystical dimensions.

Philip Jenkins is Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Institute for Studies of Religion at Baylor University. He is author of “The Lost History of Christianity: The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia — and How It Died” (HarperOne, 2008).

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  • 35 Responses for "Sufi Muslims: for centuries the most ferocious soldiers of Islam"

    1. Belal January 30th, 2009 at 12:33 am

      A.A
      He doesn’t really seem to be differentiating between ‘deviant’ and traditional Sufis. I don’t know, but I personally feel it would be better use of our time to reconcile with Salafis than to help the West split us up even more.

      Also I’m not 100% sure about this one, but to my understanding a lot of the factions in what was the UIC in Somalia were tied to tariqahs, but nobody in the West really wanted to help them out.

    2. Dawud Israel January 30th, 2009 at 1:14 am

      ^I dunno about that regarding the Somalis cuz they did tear down graves…but Sufis are strong in Africa so could be true, especially for the more orthodox Sufis who are strict against potential shirk.

      This article was really ignorant of Muslims- he talks about Muslims like they are around 1 million, and not 1 billion. And it makes a lot of stupid mistakes that are obvious- the Taliban are Sufis. And there are Sufis in Afghanistan. Sh. Abdul Hakim Murad talked about this: http://www.spyoftheheart.com/

      Omar Mukhtar was also a Sufi. For crying out loud, Salahudeen was also a Sufi!!!

      The other thing he seems to not consider that the “secretive” Sufis, might be keeping more secrets from them. Won’t say what, but from what I know, Yemen is known for Sufis…and while also for Mujahideen.
      NUFF SAID!

    3. Pepe January 30th, 2009 at 1:56 am

      Pro’s and Cons for this. At least people are acknowledging that Sufis are not a bunch of pre-modern hippies.

    4. maghi85 January 30th, 2009 at 2:40 am

      the difference between modern Jihadis and Sufi Jihadis is that Sufis fought with principles, love, and, to remove bad for good
      while the modern Jihadis are empty heads, fighting out of rage, hatred, jealousy and anger…

    5. burhan January 30th, 2009 at 3:40 am

      The book “Sabres of Paradise” is a great read and tells the story of the Naqshbandi Sheikh Shamyl as he led jihad against the Tsar’s army. This notion that Sufis are nothing but touchy-feelly pacifists is misguided. That’s not to say that Sufis should be bellicose, but if Islam as a way of life is under direct threat from external invaders, then it is as obligatory to resist that as it its to make wudhu before salat. It takes discernment to determine what really constitutes a threat, and this is why you see so many obtuse calls for pseudo jihad against imaginary threats from the so-called kuffar on the internet.

      By the way, many of those fighting Jihad in Chechnya are indeed Naqshbandis. The problem is you have many disenfranchised Arabs (and sometimes North Americans) who are simply aggressive thugs coming to fight alongside. It’s not an easy situation to determine who really dies a Shahid and who dies a bloody, violent death. Having real Iman or Ihsan at the moment of death is what makes one a true Shahid, and Allahu ‘alim.

    6. anonymous January 30th, 2009 at 9:41 am

      A lil’ history check might be good every now and then before quick judgment, no?

      But like some of brothers above are illustrating, sufis were indeed warriors for centuries. The soldiers of the Turkish sultanates which conquered all of eastern Europe for example, were all associated with sufi tariqas; in fact it was a requirement to become a soldier.

      The initial muslim expeditions into southeast Asia were also done by sufi warriors, who became so hugely charismatic due to their chivalry, humility, and asceticism, that they made the populations of the towns they encountered turn against their own rulers. The towns would rather have lived under the sufi knights than their own tyrants and rulers.

    7. ali January 30th, 2009 at 11:49 am

      The author is mistakes that the sufis incorporated Hindu gods and Christian saints into Islamic practice. He is right in that sufis were the most Distinguished Mujahidun in islam after the sahaba. the latest in History being Amir Abdulqadir of Aljeria and sheikh Mhamad Abdulle Hassan of Somalia. the person who made the comments that the UIC or the Islamic courts of Somalia were Sufis is wrong. they were Wahhabis and they have lost the Somali capital in a matter of days to the Ethiopians who are the Arch enemies of somalia and who have for hundreds of years losing territory and kings to Somali sufi Mujahidun. the Somali Sufis who are strict Shafi’is and Ash’aris have brought hundreds of east African tribes to Islam by beautiful Da’wa. they have opened vast territories for Islam in beatiful Jihad. The author is also right that there is a looming confrontation between Alqaeda types and sufis. but the sufis are not sub-contractors of the West. Now in Somalia there is fierce fighting between Al Shabaab, an al Qaeda affiliated group and Ahlu Sunnah( that is sufis who are shafi’i in Madhab, Ash’ari in Aqida), the Shafi’i Ulima have declared JIhad against the al Shabaab and whresteled control of Central Somalia from them in spectacular battles. the Al shabaab like All al Qaeda types have Massacred a lot of Muslims in Somalia in Assassinations Suicide bombings and sham Hudud punishments; the most egregious being their stoning to death of a mentally ill girl has never been Married. They do illigal Huddud punishments as propaganda tools so that they may seem to the masses that they ar emplementing the Sharia (Sa’a ma yahkumun) the have also killed many promionent Ulima; one of them while leaving a masjid where He just finished teaching Tafsir!!. they have also started destroying and excafating the graves of many Maujahidun Awliya many of them buried for hundreds of years.
      IF there is an uprising of Ahlu sunna(that is people of the four madahib, Sufis the Ash’ariyah and Maturidiyah) they will bring back th dignity of the Muslims and manifest Allah’s “wa antumul A’lowna(you are uppermost) on the earthy realm, Insha Allah. the Wahabis and Al qaeda types are a nuissance and not a strategic challenge to the west, they are an excuse for them to attack and humiliate the Muslims. the Sufis are the true people of the sunnah, they respect the shariah and use its teachings in the realm of Jihad. their manual in politics and organizations is the Qur’an while the leader they emulate in both realms is the Mustafa (SAW). THe Neo-kharijis are Western in aspiration and organization, utilitarian in tactics, cowardly terrorists in war . their true manual is the book of Machiaveli. they use the Qu’an and sunnah as slogans and raalying cry only; which is why thely lose everywhere. ASSalamu Alaikum

    8. Farzana January 30th, 2009 at 12:59 pm

      I think it’s incorrect to say that ‘historical heritage of jihad is dead amongst many of the Sufis of today’. The chechan fighters fighting jihad today are largely Naqshbandi sufis. It is also incorrect to view them as ‘effeminate harmless hyppies’ as their strenght is both measured and appropriate. Whereas some would prefer that they innappropriately vent their anger at every opportunity.
      The Taliban too were Sufis until the Salafi dawah rolled into town and filled them with it’s rage and violence.

    9. awesome January 30th, 2009 at 1:18 pm

      just a question, what is beautiful jihad? is it like prancing around as you chop someones head off? no offense but there is nothing beautiful about war.

    10. Munawar Ali January 30th, 2009 at 2:20 pm

      “Although I must say that this historical heritage of jihad is dead amongst many of the Sufis of today.”

      Asalamualaikum – You couldn’t say that if you reflected that many (if not majority) of Afghani Mujahideen fighting the Soviets were sufi’s. The heads of many the factions were in fact heads of various Sufi Orders.

      Munawar

    11. anonymous January 30th, 2009 at 3:03 pm

      @ awesome

      beautiful jihad would be to fight with honor and chivalry, and not to mistreat those taken as captives after war, as is the sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh). To fight beautifully means not to harm elders, women, and children, even not harming the trees and animals (which is also sunnah), and to only fight in defense of one’s self, family, and community. Of course, none of these things from the sunnah are observed by people nowadays (look at the bombing campaigns on civilian targets by so many countries, and look at Guantanamo Bay for mistreatment of hostages). This ‘prancing’ you’re thinking about is an effect of modernity unfortunately and the modern world’s insctinctual reflex against word not deemed to by hyper-masculine and tough, such as ‘beautiful’.

    12. MR January 30th, 2009 at 4:51 pm

      @Farzana and Munawar Ali – I did not say all Sufis were not engaging in Jihad but I am saying that there are many who are not engaging it in. I’m also not saying it in a negative way, I’m saying it as a fact. Maybe it’s not an option in many areas of the world or the signs of qiyaamah are just really close and return of Isa (alyhisalam) is right around the corner. Allah knows best.

    13. Scott January 30th, 2009 at 5:58 pm

      Not related to this at all, but thought it would interest you:

      Israel ‘hides settlements data’

      “It suggests most construction took place without the right permits, and more than 30 settlements were built in part on land owned by Palestinians.”

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7861076.stm

    14. awesome January 30th, 2009 at 6:50 pm

      @Munawar, the factions that counted were not sufi. Sufis nowadays though definately not without ideas are not ideological. They don’t try to make the world fit a grid. Sufis are somewhat like Jews and Hindu’s in that they don’t seek out to convert or convince people. Its more of like “are you sure, you want to join us?” Thats been my experience. I think that sort of draws in the sort of personality that a group would want in the first place.

      The other thing is that sufism attracts people precisely because of its promiscous nature of blending in with local cultures and ways. It make it attractive and forceful in its own way, somewhat like a river flowing perpetually seemingly still but actually vibrant.

      @anonymous, valid points. I guess its sort of like Qasimoto in the Last Samurai. Fighting but with dignity.

    15. Sufi_jihad January 30th, 2009 at 9:39 pm

      Yes sufis do fight, so do shias, christian, jews and hindus.

    16. Brother January 31st, 2009 at 10:06 pm

      salaam

      “Although I must say that this historical heritage of jihad is dead amongst many of the Sufis of today.”
      @MR:
      This is simultaneously true and not true. You have to see which Mutasawwifeen you are talking about: The Haqqani ones who have strayed away from basic Shar’i tenets, the Barelwi who were and are used to promote in-action in the realm of Jihad, other cultic-types present in the Shaam, Persian, and Kurdi areas? Or the Mutasawwifeen of Central Asia, Afghanistan, most parts of Central Asia, western China (Xianjing), Deoband……..? This is to be taken into consideration before making this claim, because it all honesty it may come off to be an inaccurate generalization.

      “I did not say all Sufis were not engaging in Jihad but I am saying that there are many who are not engaging it in.”
      @MR: This does not make sense, because it’s not about ENGAGING in Jihad. If it was about actually ENGAGING in it, then that statement would have to be aimed at all Muslims. It’s not about engaging in it b/c not all can, usually due to circumstance and situation. The issue is about their ideology in regard to Jihaad. My response above expounds on this, that which “Sufis” are you talking about? The ones who said Jihaad is not aloud against imperialist British in India, or the Haqqani ones who override many Shar’i rulings…?

      Plus, we have to erase this thought that Tasawwuf is a separate group [Unfortunately, some Mutasawwifeen of Shaam have given this vibe, unfortunately, although some of them may not mean to]. Would you ever say, “The heritage of jihad is dead amongst many Fuqaha” ? Or, “The heritage of jihad is dead amongst many Muhadditheen” ? Or, “The heritage of jihad is dead amongst many community activists” ? Or, opposingly, “The heritage of ‘Ilm and/or Da’wah is dead amongst many Jihadis” ?
      MR, you getting my drift bro?

      @Farzana:
      I don’t think Salafi da’wah ever came into Taliban leader-ranks, such as with Mullah Omar, although OBL is Salafi; but even he was not amongst Taliban leaders, but was asked to remain subservient to Taliban leaders. Although many sincere Muslims from all walks of life including Salafis joined the Taliban movement to implement Shari’ah. The shortcomings of the Taliban you are referring to, rage and violence, as far as I know, was not due to Salafi involvement. It was simply mis-handling of implementation by the Taliban. The people were not ready for a change to upright Shari’ah law, hence they rejected it…. and really, this would happen today in any part of the world. Closing down theaters, banning music, making proper hijaab/pardah, etc is all part of Shari’ah but is often met with indifference if not blunt opposition. Their members would consult with Tablighi Jamaat ‘Ulama and other scholars of the Subcontinent. One such scholar was Shaykh Maulana Muhammad Jan (ra), who became Shaheed at the hands of Shi’a (as speculation goes). He was a famous Deobandi scholar.

      As Dawud Israel mentioned, many are mistaken about the Taliban. The leaders of the Taliban are Mutasawwifeen. You often see on Discovery/History/Natl Geographic channels that the Taliban were Salafi. That is incorrect, especially keeping in mind how the West portrays any Jihaadi or organization striving for Shari’ah implementation as “Wahhabi”. We saw this especially in the Subcontinent, where the British labeled every resistant movement as “Wahhabi!”, regardless of who they actually were.
      There is actually speculation that Mullah Omar is a disciple in the Naqshbandi tariqah. So once again, yes the Taliban are Orthodox Muslims… and Orthodox means that they accept Orthodox doctrines such as Tasawwuf. A very important point Muslims have to understand.

      Tasawwuf is a part of Islam (not the pseudo Sufis, not the grave-worshipping Sufis, not the disco-Sufis). Hence, almost all ‘Ulama of our rich history and tradition were Mutasawwifeen, like Shaykh ‘Iz ad-Deen Abdus-Salaam (ra), Shaykh Nur ad-Din az-Zangi (ra) who are mostly known for their Jihaad against Crusaders and others, while many remain aloof to their ‘Ilmi and Sufi identity.

      @awesome:
      Your comment 2 boxes above mine indicates that you must have been exposed to the wrong type of Sufis. Because Tasawwuf is not a movement, it’s not a cult. It’s a science of Deen that aims at fixing the “Baatin”, inner-self. Unfortunately, many who call themselves Sufis have deviated from this and hence portray Tasawwuf as a movement, and by movement I mean like HT movement, Ikhwan movement, etc.

    17. ali February 1st, 2009 at 9:52 am

      to “Brother” what exactly do you mean by grave-worshipping. This is Wahhabi talk. if you are talking about Tawassul, Istighatha, and tabbaruk of the graves of the Awliya. Then you are gravely mistaken. That practice is supported by the Sharia and its great expounders like sheikh ul Islam IZZ ib Abdul-Salam, An Nawawi, Al suyuti, Sakaria Ansari, Ibn Hajar Asqalani, Ibn Hajar Al Haytami, Imam Ramli, and the great majority of Sunni Ulima. So please do not be so bold in your Accusations if you are concerned about your Akhira word like that may seem innocuous to you but they are a matter of live and death. Throwing Acid on the faces of girls who want to go to school is neither from Islam, nor Jihad Nor Tassawuf. I do not know if any Taliban leader condones the attrocities that are carried out in the name of the Taliban, But those practices are utterly condemned by the sharia. Muslims feel cornered and humiliated in all corners of the globe today. That is only a test from Allah. How are we supposed to react? should we take our guidance from the devil and do suicide bombings in markets where hundreds of civilians and may be one Kafir Soldier? should we throw acid on innocent girls? Or should we take guidance from the Qur’an and be patient and do our homework “ya ayuha ladina Amanu “sbiru wa sabiru wa RABITU”. If the Muslims read Surah At_Tawba and Sura Al Anfal for instructions; and fought to uphold the word of Allah both in the means and ends of their struggle they would be on top ( I do not mean they as in a Muslim enthicity Nationalism, but they as people who live and struggle that the word of Allah might be Uppermost both in their lives and on the Earth. I also take Issue with your Slander against the Followers of Sheik Haqqani and the Berelawis. I am not affiliated with any of them but I fave only heard good things about them. So bring prove of your accusations if you are Truthful or else keep you partisan hatered to yourself. That is if you want to stay within the bounds of the Sharia. May Allah forgive you and I and all the Muslims and keep us of the straight path, and give us his Ridwan.

    18. Brother February 1st, 2009 at 5:10 pm

      @ali:

      Before any response, I’d like you to re-read your post and notice that it is packed with emotion. Often times due to strong emotions, a person talks haphazardly and says things which have almost no connection to the points being made.

      “to “Brother” what exactly do you mean by grave-worshipping. This is Wahhabi talk. if you are talking about Tawassul, Istighatha, and tabbaruk of the graves of the Awliya. Then you are gravely mistaken.”
      This is not Wahhabi talk. Instead of going on a rant, first see if I even referred to tawwassul, istighatha, or tabarruk. Answer is, no. So your long explanation afterwards is completely irrelevant. What I am referring to is making sajdah to graves and making tawaaf around them; taking food to graves of Awliya (as a gift to them) is another ‘ajeeb practice in some circles. People involved with these groups, AND those who left these groups, state that this does occur.

      “So please do not be so bold in your Accusations if you are concerned about your Akhira word like that may seem innocuous to you but they are a matter of live and death.”
      Understand what I said and do not be bold in your accusation.

      “Throwing Acid on the faces of girls who want to go to school is neither from Islam, nor Jihad Nor Tassawuf.”
      …….and where did that come from? Please, calm your emotions and read what I wrote. You are probably referring to my statement about Taliban’s rage in certain cases. If you were in a normal state of mind rather than throwing accusations of “Wahhabi talk”, you would understand that I said the reason Taliban made those mistakes is because they mis-handled implementing the Shari’ah. People in Afghanistan were not ready to flip their lives 180 degrees overnight. It was needed to be done gradually. Hence, the people rebelled, which lead to even more problems.

      And then your rant on suicide bombers, I have no clue where that came from either. And by the way, I hope you know Salafi scholars like Shaykh bin Baaz, Shaykh ibn Uthaimeen, etc have said suicide bombings are not allowed (at least that is what my Salafi friends tell me, and I also read that as well. The major problem is with Madkhalee followers).

      “I also take Issue with your Slander against the Followers of Sheik Haqqani and the Barelwis. I am not affiliated with any of them but I fave only heard good things about them.”
      I did not slander Barelwis, although I disagree with certain extremes of theirs. I stated that they were against the call for Jihaad against imperialist British, which other Scholars from Hind AND Arab lands completely discredited (this is a historical fact). I also stated that they are often cited even today to preach laxity in Jihaad (althought I do not know what their stances are about current situations around the globe).
      Haqqani/Kabbani group, yes I speak against them and this is not slander. Mureeds in their tariqah share their practices. I know at least 4 people who were deeply involved with them, but left (3 of them joined a different tariqah, while the other became Salafi). Their issues are openly known… and I have seen people making sajdah to Kabbani (they say llift one foot during sajdah, so that it actually isn’t a valid sajdah; that is their justification). There was a video online as well, but I believe it has been removed.

      To close, I dislike restating everything I said due to someone who gets emotionally charged and goes on a rant… assuming things, and bringing up things that have almost no relevancy to the issues raised.

    19. Siraaj Muhammad February 2nd, 2009 at 2:50 pm

      Haqqani/Kabbani group, yes I speak against them and this is not slander. Mureeds in their tariqah share their practices. I know at least 4 people who were deeply involved with them, but left (3 of them joined a different tariqah, while the other became Salafi). Their issues are openly known… and I have seen people making sajdah to Kabbani (they say llift one foot during sajdah, so that it actually isn’t a valid sajdah; that is their justification). There was a video online as well, but I believe it has been removed.

      May Allah protect us from such stupidity – lift one foot off the ground? People will turn all sorts of intellectual backflips to twist Islam for their own purposes.

      Siraaj

    20. Fouad.Ahmed London February 6th, 2009 at 4:11 pm

      To Brother , Not that i really care about sufi Jihad in the past or anything related to sufism , but i have to correct the fact that you said Osama Bin Laden is a salafi. This is incorrect and false information and smear on all those upon Ahlu sunnah Jammat. Shaykh Abdul-’Azeez Ibn ’Abdullaah Ibn Baaz ( RH) labled him as a kharijee his neither upon haq or upon salafiyah.

      Said Shaykhul-Islaam ’Abdul-’Azeez Ibn ’Abdullaah Ibn Baaz (d.1420H) – rahimahullaah, “So my advice to al-Mas’aree, al-Faqeeh and Ibn Laadin and all those who traverse their way is to leave alone this disastrous path, and to fear Allaah and to beware of His revenge and His anger, and to return to guidance and to repent to Allaah from whatever has preceded from them.”

      also

      Said Imaam Aboo Bakr al-Aajurree (d.360H) – rahimahullaah, “It is not permissible for the one who sees the uprising of a khaarijee who has revolted against the leader, whether he is just or oppressive – so this person has revolted and gathered a group behind him, has pulled out his sword and has made lawful the killing of Muslims – it is not fitting for the one who sees this, that he becomes deceived by this person’s recitation of the Qur‘aan, the length of his standing in Prayer, nor his constant fasting, nor his good and excellent words in knowledge when it is clear to him that this person’s way and methodology is that of the Khawaarij.”

      A concise warning from Imaam Ibn Baaz (rahimahullaah) to Usaamah Ibn Laadin. The extremist takfeeree who rejoices in making takfeer mu’ayyin of the Scholars of Ahlus-Sunnah and the Muslim rulers all in the name of Islaam. Ibn Laadin’s disgusting, vermin-laden doctrine of mass-takfeer was not excluded from even the eminent Imaam Ibn Baaz (rahimahullaah).

    21. Ali February 8th, 2009 at 11:37 am

      Ibn Baz? Sheikhul Islam? what a joke!!! I do not want to talk bad of the Dead but Usama and Bin Baz are both Wahhabis. The difference is that UBL practices what he preaches while the Wahhabi Stablishment recognize their Raison de etre which is to sustain and issue fatwas on demand to the corrupt Saudi Dynasty. We know that The Saudi royal family is the protector of American and Zionist interests in the Muslim World. They just pretend that they are the guardians of Muslim Interests. Washington and Telaviv order a fatwa and the Ala sheikh and the Ala Saud guarantee delivary within “thirty Minutes”. I commend the Saudis for their their management of the Hajj, but the sooner Muslims recognize that they (together with the Wahhabis) are the mole the sooner we stand up to the West.
      Wa salamu alaikum.

    22. chuah February 8th, 2009 at 4:22 pm

      akhi ali…fear allah brother..al-wahhab is a name and an attribute of allah subahan..and u should not use as a derogatory word to insult the scholars…unless you deny that al wahhab is from the sifat…do you?

    23. Burhan February 9th, 2009 at 2:33 pm

      Muslims on the internet just make stupid stupider.

    24. Ahmadi February 9th, 2009 at 4:06 pm

      It is the Sufism that is bred in the west that is devoid of Jihad as a legitimate struggle. Brought on by white-converts and ex-hippies from the flowery decades. Folks like the Nowrich convert families and many others. Sufism is made out to be seperate from Islam or mainstream Islam. Some pick and mix involved and you get a Sufism that is more Buddhist than anything else. I think in the east or elsewhere Sufism hasnt changes, such as Chechnya.

      People in the west still think Rumi wrote only about worldly love (of another human being) and not of God. Thats the sufism they believe in.

    25. Ahmadi February 9th, 2009 at 4:08 pm

      The Taliban come from the Deobandi schools, who take Sufi tariqa’s and so they are ‘sufi’s’ and NOT wahhabis. They did side with Muslim brothers, even if they were Wahhabi or Salafi, but this was for a common cause to fight the Russians.

      Taliban are not wahhabi or salafi.

    26. Shah April 24th, 2009 at 10:08 pm

      Peace,

      Does anyone have any whatsoever video,photo.litterature documenting that Talibans of Afghanistan are Sufi of Ahle Sunnah Wal Jamat,please send it to my email:

      solid_snuff@hotmail.com

    27. Shah April 24th, 2009 at 10:11 pm

      Peace,

      Does anyone have any whatsoever video,photo.litterature documenting that Talibans of Afghanistan are Sufi of Ahle Sunnah Wal Jamat,please send it to my email:

      solid_snuff@hotmail.com

      And also users ” Dawud Israel ” ,send me the video of Shayk Abdul Hakim Murad speaking of Sufis in Afghanistan

    28. Shah April 25th, 2009 at 7:48 am

      Its not enough to say that they were at one point Sufis and are not today. give me solid proof. Videos,pictures etc..

      -Shah

    29. Phil April 25th, 2009 at 1:15 pm

      “It is the Sufism that is bred in the west that is devoid of Jihad as a legitimate struggle. Brought on by white-converts and ex-hippies from the flowery decades. Folks like the Nowrich convert families and many others. Sufism is made out to be seperate from Islam or mainstream Islam. Some pick and mix involved and you get a Sufism that is more Buddhist than anything else. I think in the east or elsewhere Sufism hasnt changes, such as Chechnya.

      People in the west still think Rumi wrote only about worldly love (of another human being) and not of God. Thats the sufism they believe in.”

      Tell me when you finish with your gross offensive generalizations.

    30. Phil April 26th, 2009 at 6:44 am

      ^what ever makes you sleep better at night.

    31. Muslim June 8th, 2009 at 5:37 pm

      Many of the Taliban are sufis. They follow the Hanafi school and Maturidi in Aqeeda and the approve tasawuf (sufism)!

    32. JH February 27th, 2010 at 2:26 pm

      which facts in this article are wrong? and where was it origionally published?

    33. Shah March 2nd, 2010 at 6:51 pm

      Afghan Talibans are SUFIS ( BARELWIS)

      “Gilani says that the Sufis are “extremely willing to bring peace” to the country. He also notes that “a majority of the Taliban” are Sufis, mostly followers of the Qadiriya and Naqshbandiya movements.

      In fact, Gilani says that Taliban leader Mullah Omar was himself raised as a Sufi before later embracing the more severe Wahhabi-inspired Islam followed by the Taliban. However, some experts dispute that claim.”

      Read the full article here:

      http://www.rferl.org/content/Can_Sufis_Bring_Peace_to_Afghanistan/1503303.html

      Read also this SOHBET by Sufi Shayk Hisham Kabbani who invited a Taliban official to declare his belief. If you read the whole SOHBET ,you will find that the Taliban official declares clearly that the belife of Talibanns of Afghanistan and all the people of Afghanistan is believing in SUFISM and adhering to AHle Sunnah Wal Jamah:

      http://www.sunnah.org/audio/khutba/sohbat.html

    34. Khalid May 17th, 2010 at 10:09 pm

      Salamalikum
      Salahuddin was not a sufi. He was a sunni and he followed the Shafii school of thought

    35. Shah May 19th, 2010 at 7:52 am

      @ Khalid. You are wrong brother Khalid. Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn Yūsuf ibn Ayyūb was a strict adherent of Sunni Islam and a disciple of the Qadiri Sufi order. This is a well known fact about him. Even today if you go to his grave, his Sufi cloak is there and other Sufi artefacts. Sufis from around the whole world visits his grave to pay theyre respect . Watch this video of Naqshbandi Sufis at his grave:

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