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Declination of Sufism among Muslims - Essay Example

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Sufism may be defined as a mystic interpretation of Islamic life within the bonds of religious orthodoxy, which was originally launched by people of Perso-Arab world. These people rejected the worldly pleasures and devoted themselves to the service of God…
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Declination of Sufism among Muslims
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Download file to see previous pages These powers are attributed to them under the guidelines of Quran and Sunnah. The most important aspect is that the disciples of Sufis take up the path of peace or even armed jehad for Shariatisation of the whole world as their mission. "Seekers of Tawhid should strive to dedicate themselves to the Prophet Mohammad, so much so that their entire selves, including their hearts and their spirits, were free of thoughts other than of God" (Saiyied Athar Abbas Rizvi 178). Even though Sufism is popular, history bears witness that several attempts have been made to suppress Sufism. There have been attempts to use even physical force and violence to suppress Sufism. This paper discusses some of the reasons for declination of Sufism among Muslims.
The concept of Sufism was mainly intended to focus the mystic power on the spiritual dimension of Islam with the purpose to shield the believers from the superficial and unrealistic dogma of the faith. In other words it can be said that mysticism is a realistic spiritual discipline particularly based on the insight of illuminated seekers of reality or truth. Besides, it can be said that it is a mission of higher religious order of any faith, which disdains conflict and violence in any form. The ultimate goal is joy of self-realization which is generally experienced after a long spiritual practice (Upadhyay n. pag).
Ev
Even after the popularity of Sufism, there are several instances where the Sufi practices are suppressed using violence. There are several reasons for this and in spite of varied debates and modernist and reformist attempts to separate or dissociate Sufism from Islam. Take for example in orthodox Islam, according to Najaf, the object of creation is the worship of God," This is an association of subordination or in other words - a one-way association in which God is the master and the devotee is the slave. On the other hand Sufis argue opposing the view of orthodox Islam that God should be worshipped not because of the fear that you will be punished if you did not worship, rather God should be worshiped because of the love that an individual feels for God. The main ideology of Sufi is love. As a result, Sufis believe that there exists equality among all people and everyone irrespective of gender or place in the social order is capable of expressing his or her love for God, and that surpasses religious associations (Dalrymple n. pag).
One of the main theme in the ideology and activities of contemporary Sunni Islamist movements is a deep-rooted opposition to Sufism. The reason for suppression of Sufism is the modernist approach to knowledge or disdain of what cannot be scientifically explained led to the dismissal Sufism too. The mutual rivalry between these groups has become prominent in the modern setting of heightened political Islamism. The doctrinal roots of opposition to Sufism are found in the important writings of the 13th-century Hanbali 'alim Taqi al-Din Ahmad ibn Taymiyya (Majmu'a Fatawa Shaykh al-IsIam Ahmad ibn Taymiyya). Besides, Ibn Taymiyya in his quest to purify the Muslim faith strongly opposed Sufi pantheism and such practices as the worship of saints and pilgrimages to their shrines (Makdisi 247-251).
In the hands of Muhammad ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab, Ibn Taymiyya's restrictions on Sufism was transformed into a popular disapproval and prohibition of the Sufi orders (Shaykh Muhammad Ibn 'Abd ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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