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Sufism (Arabic: تصوف‎{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}, Ta'sawwuf), according to its adherents, is the inner mystical dimension of Islam. Practitioners of Sufism (Tasawwuf), referred to as Sufis (ṣūfī) ({{#invoke:IPAc-en|main}}; صُوفِيّ{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}), often belong to different ṭuruq or "orders"—congregations formed around a grand master referred to as a Mawla who maintains a direct chain of teachers back to the Prophet Muhammad.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> These orders meet for spiritual sessions (majalis) in meeting places known as zawiyahs, khanqahs, or tekke.<ref>The New Encyclopedia Of Islam By Cyril Glassé, p.499</ref> Sufis strive for ihsan (perfection of worship) as detailed in a hadith: "Ihsan is to worship Allah as if you see Him; if you can't see Him, surely He sees you."<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref> Jalaluddin Rumi stated: "The Sufi is hanging on to Muhammad, like Abu Bakr."<ref>Quoted in Ibrahim Gamard, Rumi and Islam: Selections from His Stories, Poems, and Discourses — Annotated and Explained, p. 171.</ref> Sufis consider themselves to be the original true proponents of this pure, original form of Islam.

All Sufi orders (turuq) trace many of their original precepts from the Islamic prophet Muhammad through his cousin and son-in-law Ali ibn Abi Talib, with the notable exception of the Sunni Naqshbandi order who claim to trace their origins through the first sunni Caliph, Abu Bakr.<ref name="SupremeCouncil">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> Sufi orders are largely Sunni and follow one of the four schools of Sunni Islam and maintain a Sunni Aqidah or creed.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Over the years various Sufi orders have been influenced by and adopted into various Shi'ite movements including Ismailism- which led to the Safaviyya order's conversion to Shi'ite Islam and the spread of Twelver Shi'ism throughout Persia.<ref>Daftary |Farhad |2013 |A History of Shi'i Islam |New York NY |I.B. Tauris and Co ltd. |page 28 |isbn 9780300035315 |4/8/2015</ref> Sufi orders include Alevi, Bektashi, Burhaniya, Mevlevi, Ba 'Alawiyya, Chishti, Rifa'i, Khalwati, Naqshbandi, Nimatullahi, Oveyssi, Qadiria Boutshishia, Qadiriyyah, Qalandariyya, Sarwari Qadiri, Shadhiliyya, Suhrawardiyya, and many others.<ref name="ReferenceA">The Jamaat Tableegh and the Deobandis by Sajid Abdul Kayum, Chapter 1: Overview and Background.</ref>

Classical Sufi scholars have defined Sufism as "a science whose objective is the reparation of the heart and turning it away from all else but God".<ref>Ahmed Zarruq, Zaineb Istrabadi, Hamza Yusuf Hanson. The Principles of Sufism. Amal Press. 2008.</ref> Alternatively, in the words of the Darqawi Sufi teacher Ahmad ibn Ajiba, "a science through which one can know how to travel into the presence of the Divine, purify one's inner self from filth, and beautify it with a variety of praiseworthy traits".<ref>An English translation of Ahmad ibn Ajiba's biography has been published by Fons Vitae.</ref> Traditional Sufis, such as Bayazid Bastami, Jalaluddin Rumi, Haji Bektash Veli, Junaid Baghdadi, and Al-Ghazali, define Sufism as purely based upon the tenets of Islam and the teachings of Muhammad.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref><ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref><ref name="chittick">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref><ref name="nasr">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> Some Orientalists, however, have proposed a variety of diverse theories pertaining to the nature of Sufism, such as Sufism being influenced by Neoplatonism or was an Aryan reaction against Semites.<ref name="nasr"/> Seyyed Hossein Nasr, states that the preceding theories are false according to the point of view of Sufism.<ref name="nasr"/> According to William Chittick, "In a broad sense, Sufism can be described as the interiorization and intensification of Islamic faith and practice."<ref>Chittick (2008), p.22</ref>

Muslims and mainstream scholars of Islam define Sufism as simply the name for the inner or esoteric dimension of Islam<ref name="Godlas">Alan Godlas, University of Georgia, Sufism's Many Paths, 2000, University of Georgia</ref> which is supported and complemented by outward or exoteric practices of Islam, such as Islamic law.<ref>Insights into Islamic Esoterism and Taoism (Sophia Perennis 2003)</ref> In this view, "it is absolutely necessary to be a Muslim" to be a true Sufi, because Sufism's "methods are inoperative without" Muslim "affiliation".<ref>The New Encyclopedia Of Islam By Cyril Glassé, p.500</ref> Orthodox views also maintain that Sufism is unique to Islam.<ref name="chittick"/><ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref> In contrast, author Idries Shah states Sufi philosophy is universal in nature, its roots predating the rise of Islam and Christianity.<ref name="Munn">{{#invoke:Citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=journal }}</ref> Some neo-Sufis in Western countries allow non-Muslims to receive "instructions on following the Sufi path".<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Some Muslim opponents of Sufism also consider it outside the sphere of Islam.<ref name="Godlas" /><ref>Idries Shah, The Sufis, ISBN 0-385-07966-4</ref>

Classical Sufis were characterised by their attachment to dhikr, (a practice of repeating the names of God, often performed after prayers)<ref>A Prayer for Spiritual Elevation and Protection (2007) by Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi, Suha Taji-Farouki</ref> and asceticism. Sufism gained adherents among a number of Muslims as a reaction against the worldliness of the early Umayyad Caliphate (661–750 CE).<ref name="FirstDynasty">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }} See Google book search.</ref> Sufis have spanned several continents and cultures over a millennium, originally expressing their beliefs in Arabic, before spreading into Persian, Turkish, and Urdu among dozens of other languages.<ref>Michael Sells, Early Islamic Mysticism, pg. 1</ref>


Sufism sections
Intro  Terminology  Etymology  As an Islamic discipline  Aims and objectives  History  Theoretical perspectives  Devotional practices  Persecution  Islam and Sufism  Prominent Sufis  Sufi Orders  Symbols associated with the Sufi Orders  Reception  In popular culture  Modern and contemporary Sufi scholars  Gallery  See also  References  Further reading  External links  

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Sufism (Arabic: تصوف‎{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}, Ta'sawwuf), according to its adherents, is the inner mystical dimension of Islam. Practitioners of Sufism (Tasawwuf), referred to as Sufis (ṣūfī) ({{#invoke:IPAc-en|main}}; صُوفِيّ{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}), often belong to different ṭuruq or "orders"—congregations formed around a grand master referred to as a Mawla who maintains a direct chain of teachers back to the Prophet Muhammad.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> These orders meet for spiritual sessions (majalis) in meeting places known as zawiyahs, khanqahs, or tekke.<ref>The New Encyclopedia Of Islam By Cyril Glassé, p.499</ref> Sufis strive for ihsan (perfection of worship) as detailed in a hadith: "Ihsan is to worship Allah as if you see Him; if you can't see Him, surely He sees you."<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref> Jalaluddin Rumi stated: "The Sufi is hanging on to Muhammad, like Abu Bakr."<ref>Quoted in Ibrahim Gamard, Rumi and Islam: Selections from His Stories, Poems, and Discourses — Annotated and Explained, p. 171.</ref> Sufis consider themselves to be the original true proponents of this pure, original form of Islam.

All Sufi orders (turuq) trace many of their original precepts from the Islamic prophet Muhammad through his cousin and son-in-law Ali ibn Abi Talib, with the notable exception of the Sunni Naqshbandi order who claim to trace their origins through the first sunni Caliph, Abu Bakr.<ref name="SupremeCouncil">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> Sufi orders are largely Sunni and follow one of the four schools of Sunni Islam and maintain a Sunni Aqidah or creed.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Over the years various Sufi orders have been influenced by and adopted into various Shi'ite movements including Ismailism- which led to the Safaviyya order's conversion to Shi'ite Islam and the spread of Twelver Shi'ism throughout Persia.<ref>Daftary |Farhad |2013 |A History of Shi'i Islam |New York NY |I.B. Tauris and Co ltd. |page 28 |isbn 9780300035315 |4/8/2015</ref> Sufi orders include Alevi, Bektashi, Burhaniya, Mevlevi, Ba 'Alawiyya, Chishti, Rifa'i, Khalwati, Naqshbandi, Nimatullahi, Oveyssi, Qadiria Boutshishia, Qadiriyyah, Qalandariyya, Sarwari Qadiri, Shadhiliyya, Suhrawardiyya, and many others.<ref name="ReferenceA">The Jamaat Tableegh and the Deobandis by Sajid Abdul Kayum, Chapter 1: Overview and Background.</ref>

Classical Sufi scholars have defined Sufism as "a science whose objective is the reparation of the heart and turning it away from all else but God".<ref>Ahmed Zarruq, Zaineb Istrabadi, Hamza Yusuf Hanson. The Principles of Sufism. Amal Press. 2008.</ref> Alternatively, in the words of the Darqawi Sufi teacher Ahmad ibn Ajiba, "a science through which one can know how to travel into the presence of the Divine, purify one's inner self from filth, and beautify it with a variety of praiseworthy traits".<ref>An English translation of Ahmad ibn Ajiba's biography has been published by Fons Vitae.</ref> Traditional Sufis, such as Bayazid Bastami, Jalaluddin Rumi, Haji Bektash Veli, Junaid Baghdadi, and Al-Ghazali, define Sufism as purely based upon the tenets of Islam and the teachings of Muhammad.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref><ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref><ref name="chittick">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref><ref name="nasr">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> Some Orientalists, however, have proposed a variety of diverse theories pertaining to the nature of Sufism, such as Sufism being influenced by Neoplatonism or was an Aryan reaction against Semites.<ref name="nasr"/> Seyyed Hossein Nasr, states that the preceding theories are false according to the point of view of Sufism.<ref name="nasr"/> According to William Chittick, "In a broad sense, Sufism can be described as the interiorization and intensification of Islamic faith and practice."<ref>Chittick (2008), p.22</ref>

Muslims and mainstream scholars of Islam define Sufism as simply the name for the inner or esoteric dimension of Islam<ref name="Godlas">Alan Godlas, University of Georgia, Sufism's Many Paths, 2000, University of Georgia</ref> which is supported and complemented by outward or exoteric practices of Islam, such as Islamic law.<ref>Insights into Islamic Esoterism and Taoism (Sophia Perennis 2003)</ref> In this view, "it is absolutely necessary to be a Muslim" to be a true Sufi, because Sufism's "methods are inoperative without" Muslim "affiliation".<ref>The New Encyclopedia Of Islam By Cyril Glassé, p.500</ref> Orthodox views also maintain that Sufism is unique to Islam.<ref name="chittick"/><ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=citation }}</ref> In contrast, author Idries Shah states Sufi philosophy is universal in nature, its roots predating the rise of Islam and Christianity.<ref name="Munn">{{#invoke:Citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=journal }}</ref> Some neo-Sufis in Western countries allow non-Muslims to receive "instructions on following the Sufi path".<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Some Muslim opponents of Sufism also consider it outside the sphere of Islam.<ref name="Godlas" /><ref>Idries Shah, The Sufis, ISBN 0-385-07966-4</ref>

Classical Sufis were characterised by their attachment to dhikr, (a practice of repeating the names of God, often performed after prayers)<ref>A Prayer for Spiritual Elevation and Protection (2007) by Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi, Suha Taji-Farouki</ref> and asceticism. Sufism gained adherents among a number of Muslims as a reaction against the worldliness of the early Umayyad Caliphate (661–750 CE).<ref name="FirstDynasty">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }} See Google book search.</ref> Sufis have spanned several continents and cultures over a millennium, originally expressing their beliefs in Arabic, before spreading into Persian, Turkish, and Urdu among dozens of other languages.<ref>Michael Sells, Early Islamic Mysticism, pg. 1</ref>


Sufism sections
Intro  Terminology  Etymology  As an Islamic discipline  Aims and objectives  History  Theoretical perspectives  Devotional practices  Persecution  Islam and Sufism  Prominent Sufis  Sufi Orders  Symbols associated with the Sufi Orders  Reception  In popular culture  Modern and contemporary Sufi scholars  Gallery  See also  References  Further reading  External links  

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