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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: July 25, 2013 11:15PM

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"A Naqushibandi dervish from Aqsu also distanced himself from crooks:he reported that in contrast to Russian Turkestan, the pious swindler had no place in Kashgar and Aqsu.

"Mohammed Ali Damolla condemned aggressive beggars as 'brigands'. They mostly pestered country people and provoked them until they said, "there is no money in my pockets." The beggars continued sometimes to pester and even beat their victim, and created a public disturbance. Accomplices (plants?--Corboy) supported the beggar and attempted to put pressure on the victim, saying "Why cannot you give him something?"
Eventually some alms were generally given.

The author (Damolla) considered young and strong dervishes equally undeserving. In the Damolla's opinion, only the sick old and truly poor should receive alms."

Drug users constituted another link between the mendicants and the 'deserving poor' because their poverty derived from their addiction."

[books.google.com]

(This from the period 1889-1949 in what is the Ughiur region in Western China.)

i]The Uighur districts in what was once termed Chinese Turkestan and is now the province of Xinchang in Western China[/i])


Rory Stewart had another conversation with a Pakistani friend. They were at the tomb of Lal Shah Baz in Sehwan-Sherif, an important pilgrimage site in the southern Pakistan province of Sindh.

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But why have you got such a problem with them?’ I asked.

‘What do you think? Those people down there,’ he said pointing at the varied activities inthe street, ‘wear jewellery, take drugs, believe in miracles, con pilgrims, worship tombs—they are illiterate blasphemers.’‘

Alright. But why do you reduce the Sufi saints to the same level?'

’‘Partly because people like you like them so much. Western hippies love Sufis. You think they are beautiful little bits of a medieval culture. "

[www.google.com]

Corboy:

Naviid,Stewart's friend, had a valid point. I am sorry to report that after
9-11, there were articles in the US and Western press about Sufism, suggesting that it be supported in Pakistan as an alternative to the various armed fundamentalist groups.

The terrorists are already attacking shrines and all this twaddle in the Western press merely puts more suspicion upon sincere devotees.

However, Naviid has a point because sentimental Westerners do not know and often do not care to know that Sufis in different areas of the Dar al Islam did participate in and even led armed uprisings against rulers (native or foreign) perceived as tyrants.

Sufi warriors fought Imperial Russian armies in the Caucasus. Sufi lodges were places of opposition to French colonialists.

A Sufi mullah led an uprising in Afghanistan in Malakand.

And, some dervishes carried weapons. Many had staves which could be used if needed. In some cases, they carried concealed blades.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2017 06:58AM by corboy.

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 03, 2013 10:39PM

"For the time being, Rumi is used as a poster boy..."

Interested persons who go to "Sufi" events such as concerts and Rumi readings, and are invited to become more involved need to FACT CHECK the actual background of their new 'friends'.

Some Sufi have complex political affiliations in foreign countries. Look up the names of the leaders and find out if they get frequent requests for blessings from heads of state.

There is a discussion portal, Bharat Rakshak Consortium of Indian Defence Websites for persons who discuss military safety and anti terrorism in India.

Rich variety of viewpoints and discussions.

One sect is discussed, led by someone with an interest in a doctrine of Turkish supremacy.

From this account, (I do not know whether it is factual, am just passing on what is discussed on the message board), this leader presents as a detached, spiritual aspirant.

[forums.bharat-rakshak.com]


A correspondant brihaspati wrote:

Post subject: Re: Islamic SectarianismPosted: 07 Jul 2011 22:57


BRF Oldie

Joined: 19 Nov 2008 03:25
Posts: 11112
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The point to note is that - again - "Sufi" memes, and Rumi and Arabi is being used as cover for what is essentially political Islam in its classic form. That classic form which aims for complete Islamization of the as yet non-Muslim world. Moreover, Gulenism can successfully use "sufism" to hide its connections to AKP ideological framework, and the Islamist neo-Ottomanization programme.

Agnimitra writes: abut 'Gulen'

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Bayram Balci, the French-Turkish scholar sums him up as

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...Dozens of Fethullah's ‘Turkish schools' abroad—most of which are for boys—are used to covertly ‘convert,' not so much ‘in school,' but through direct proselytism ‘outside school.'"

They have what they call "Lighthouses" - condos or houses bought by Hizmet (one of the Gulen orgs that sets up schools, etc.) in which students live - a sort of fraternity house. That's where the halaqas (Islamic study circles) are held, casual get-togethers are organized and friends made, and conversions happen.


Brihaspati wrote:
If true, given his "Nuri" roots, his liberal use of Rumi and Arabi - gives a most interesting use of the Sufi lexicon of political Islam!

Said Nursi is supposed to have had a divine visitation by none other than Imam Rabbani (Sheikh Ahmad Sirhindi) when he was once meditating on a hilltop overlooking the Bosphorus! So that is the real idealogical underpinning of the current Gulen movement.

For the time being, Rumi is used as a poster boy, whereas Ibn Arabi is dismissed as having been overcome with "shatahaat" - nonsense ramblings produced by divine intoxication...meaning that he witnessed the Truth but didn't know how to express it. However, Gulen has authored a two volume series on Sufism. But he advises his students that the current wave is meant for hizmet (Turkish pronunciation of "khidmat"), i.e., practical service. They go by a process of unfoldment outlined by Nursi - zarreh (nucleus of an individual transformation), qatreh (drop-like formation of a social group with such a common bond and purpose), and finally zohreh (self-witnessing accomplishment of the inner and outer aspects).

Nursi is considered to have been the nucleus that prophetically set things moving, and Gulen's is supposed to be in the second stage of Turkey's tryst with Caliphate destiny!

Gulen is probably the most interesting Islamist leader today. His followers promote a neo-Ottoman Islamism which adds an additional layer of Westernization to its historical cosmopolitan flavor (earlier based on Persianization). T

he story goes that Nursi was once captured by the Russians, who had taken possession of an Ottoman territory in the Caucasus. The Russian general supposedly gloated and showed Nursi what the Otomans had lost; to which Nursi retorted - "So what?! We Moslems will now learn Western science and then come back to take leadership over you again!" This is the basic spirit of the Gulen movement. Even in terms of breeding, lots of Gulenist volunteers take wives from Ukraine and even the US if they can manage it. They are able to attract many Moslem groups and assume leadership, offering solid shari'ah Islam with a modern Western colour, a bit like the "Islam e Ajam" that had developed in Persia centuries ago.

At least in the West, Gulenists are a consolidating force amongst Moslem groups, and project a modern face of Islam. In Moslem lands, they are welcomed because Moslems are happy to see Turks return to the fold after decades of Ataturkism. They see it as a sign of re-emergence of the Caliphate (Khilafat).

I think it is also worth observing carefully the connections between Gulenists and Iran, considering the sectarian divide. Nursi had made some overtures by incorporating some essentially Shi'ite liturgies and practices such as recitation of the Jawshan e Kabir into Turkish Islam. Gulen's followers continue that practice.

There seems to be an attempt to appropriate certain aspects of Shi'a Islam as well as Persian culture (love for Rumi, etc.), thereby creating an opening for inviting a union, while still being firmly anti-Shi'a, and especially anti-Alevi. They are very firmly rooted in the shari'ah of Sunni mazhabs. In CA stans, they are directly competing against Persian influence, and being quite successful at it I think. They are also active in Afghanistan, esp. North Afghanistan where the Uzbeks have a presence. Also very active in Northern Areas of Pakistan.

Some ministers of Erdogan's cabinet are supposed to have studied in Iran for a while (I can't find the reference; anyone?). When Erdogan started changing Turkey, some Iranian clerics started claiming that Iran had successfully exported the Islamic revolution to the bastion of Ataturkism. OTOH, BRFite shyamd says that Gulen's is a CIA-backed movement. Not sure what to make of this...

Agnimitra

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Gulen does encourage Sufi practices in some disciples, but maintains that most followers are "20 years away" from being able to understand and practice tasawwuf. He emphasizes "service" for the mass of followers. However, many do begin to get deeper into Sufi practices with time, some of them becoming vegetarian, more detached in their service, etc.

Here is a list of topics in which Sufism is discussed. It is well to understand in advance that if one takes bayat from a sheikh or Pir or Murshid, that if that Sheikh Pir or Murshid happens to be politically powerful, you, dear dervish risk becoming a mere chess piece upon a political game-board.

[forums.bharat-rakshak.com]

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... Pervez Musharraf is believed to have returned to Pakistan after obtaining the blessings of a Turkish cleric, Shaik Nazim Al Qabrisi, leader of the Sufi Naqshbandi sect of Islam who lives in Cyprus.

This Sheikh consorts with other heads of state, as well.

[www.google.com]

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 03, 2013 10:47PM

More on Gulenism

[webcache.googleusercontent.com]

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One of the most controversial aspects of these schools has been the public denials made by Gulenist administrators that there is any connection with the Gulen Movement. Many of the pages here are compilations of evidence that a strong connection exists. Other pages explore additional issues of concern about these publicly-funded schools. Our companion site, A Guide to the Gulen Movement's Activities in the US, has more information about the Gulen Movement in general, as the charter schools are only one aspect of this movement's growing influence in our country and around the world.

What are the characteristics of Gulen charter schools?

The following characteristics apply to nearly all of the over 100 Gulen charter schools across the country. Some exceptions exist; for example, the Young Scholars of Central Pennsylvania charter school appears to emphasize languages instead of the usual math/science emphasis. Some of the newer Harmony schools in Texas have names suggesting themes such as art, nature or political science. Nevertheless, there are strong commonalities among all these schools.


Emphasis on math

School advertised as emphasizing science, yet laboratory facilities are inferior to comparable schools and science classes have minimal or nonexistent experimental component

Small select group of students receives intense math coaching and attends numerous math competitions, including Mathcounts; awards generate much positive publicity for school
Free after-school tutoring; in some cases Gulenist teachers tutor in students' homes
Automated online information system for students' grades and assignments is highly touted as allowing for parental involvement, yet system is not kept current, and may be inconsistent, inaccurate or difficult to navigate
Emphasis on science fairs; for most students science project is mandatory
Students encouraged to participate in ISWEEEP (Gulenist-run science fair); hotel stay in Houston paid by school

Robotics clubs; participation in robotics competitions

Home visits offered to all families
Major emphasis on awards, mostly won by small fraction of the students
Unusually high scores on standardized tests, even with very challenging student demographics
Classes divided according to ability in math

Turkish language classes; Turkish mandatory in some grade levels; very limited selection of foreign language classes besides Turkish

Turkish culture emphasis, e.g., Turkish dance clubs

School-sponsored Turkey trips
Large number of Turkish/Turkic teachers
Participation of students in Turkish Language Olympics

Unusually high number of H1B visa applications
Many teachers have poor English skills
High teacher turnover
Gulenist teachers spend unusual amounts of time with students in extracurricular activities or socializing

Sleepovers, especially for select group of students participating in math competitions
In communications with parents, school awards and achievements are relentlessly emphasized and not put into perspective relative to other non-Gulenist schools

Chronic problems with special education compliance
Turkish/Turkic teachers and administrators have no work experience in education outside of the Gulen school network
School not under local control
Application forms are excessively detailed, requiring information that legally cannot be used to determine admission

Relentless promotion of school through frequent press releases

Continual courting of public officials by administration
School administration nearly exclusively Gulenist males of Turkish or Turkic ethnicity

Hiring practices favor Gulenists over equally qualified American teachers or administrators
Achievements of female teachers minimized or ignored

Opportunities for career development much greater for Gulenist teachers and administrators than for American employees
Parental involvement encouraged in principle, but steered towards fundraising and supporting school; administration is authoritarian while attempting to appear otherwise
Character education classes

School inaccurately claims to have few or no discipline or bullying problems
Gulenist teachers often highly inexperienced in classroom management

In some schools, excessive use of out-of-school suspensions for discipline

No trained school counselors
School uniforms required; must be purchased from school

Dwindling enrollment with each successive year of high school

Sophisticated school security systems in established schools
In geographical areas where chain of schools has been established, flagship school is usually of higher quality

Quote

I've been interested in the Gulen movement for a few years and I hadn't realized Anon had taken an interest in it until today. The OP's bullet point list is very accurate IMO.

I have a close friend (Turkish) who is heavily involved in this movement. Here's what I've observed:

- Members of this group are extremely religious, but you have to pay close attention to notice it (well, the headscarves are kind of a giveaway). They will never bring up their religion, but they usually have a magazine called The Fountain Magazine lying around. Each one contains some sort of empty uplifting message from Gulen towards the beginning, and then a bunch of articles that look like popular science, all ending with some sort of praise for Allah. Daily prayers are also observed religiously (duh...) and educational summer camps are carefully scheduled around Ramadan.
- Generally polite and impossibly good hosts from what I have seen. It's very difficult to imagine they are hiding anything - but these are rank and file members. Maybe they don't even know there is something to hide.
- Members watch a lot of Turkish television shows from networks owned by Gulen. The language barrier makes them hard for me to follow, but many of the shows seem to have strong religious themes. Being foreign productions, the acting looks incredibly terrible to my American eyes.
- They have private events at mosques occasionally. I've only been to one of them. No idea how common these are or what purpose they serve.
- I've been to one of their schools in Turkey. I forget how this happened, but at some point I found myself talking with some sort of religious figure in a separate building from the main school, who was trying to engage me in a one-sided debate about religious philosophy. Being hopelessly naive I went along with this until one of the members I knew from America busted me out of there. The schools in Turkey are very different from the ones in America - they feel more established, the religion aspect is much more overt, and they have a lot more funding. They are very proud of academically successful students - they have a trophy collection for former students who performed particularly well in math, computer science, etc. Not all of the students and teachers are religious (if I had to guess, I would say less than half). Many of the teachers I met there later came to teach in America.
- All the companies affiliated with them have names somehow related to communication (i.e. Dialog).
- Most new teachers from Turkey are very shy and work very hard at overcoming this. Interacting with students from another culture for the first time is very intimidating for them. Why on earth they force themselves to do this is beyond me. I get the feeling that doing this wasn't entirely their own idea.

This group is a lot slicker (and smarter) than Scientology. If they are to be the next target after Scientology's death by a thousand cuts... they are going to be a hell of a lot harder to bring down.

[www.google.com]

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Fethullah Gülen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaThough he has never been a member of a Sufi tarekat and does not see tarekat
membership as a necessity for Muslims, he teaches that Sufism is the inner ...
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Islamic preachers or modern Sufi communities (in Turkey) who ...
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Gulenists' Kurdishphobia. By Dr. Aland Mizell - Kurd NetSep 10, 2012... and Sufi Muslim scholar living in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania ... Today
the Gulenists' media is bombarding audiences with a series of ...
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Syracuse Academy of Science - Gulen Charter SchoolsMar 3, 2013... Sufi poet of great significance to Fethullah Gulen and his followers. ... The visit
was reported by Cihan News Agency, a Gulenist media outlet.
gulencharterschools.weebly.com/syracuse-academy-of-science.html - 49k - Cached - Similar pages


Gulenist Ideology Replaces Kemalism – Understanding Other ...Nov 27, 2012 ... Today Gulenists are doing the same thing, closing down the ... Ataturk had
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Influential Turkish religious figure chides Erdogan - FT.comJun 6, 2013 ... Supporters say it is non-political and highlight the Gulenists' ... In the past, Mr
Gulen, who is rooted in Turkey's Sufi tradition, has made common ...
www.ft.com/cms/s/0/07b35cd8-ce9e-11e2-ae25-00144feab7de.html - 60k - Cached - Similar pages


“000Kitap”: The Book That Is Scandalizing Istanbul : The New YorkerDec 1, 2011 ... Sik's manuscript connected the powerful Gulenist movement—an expansive
network of people linked by the teachings of Sufi theologian ...
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Turkey Feels Sway of Fethullah Gulen, a Reclusive Cleric - NYTimes ...Apr 24, 2012... peace and interfaith dialogue, drawing on the traditions of Sufism, a mystical ...
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significance for ...
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PAA's Sharon Higgins on 60 Minutes Gulen Charter Schools report ...May 17, 2012 ... should be following Gulenists are Creationists. ... at the Syracuse Academy of
Science Charter School taught to perform a Sufi religious ritual?
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have flaunted special education law, charter school law regarding ...
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[whyweprotest.net] - 82k - Cached - Similar pages



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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 03, 2013 10:51PM

Google "gulen" and "charter schools" and you will probably find all this and more.

Have put this in the thread because Gulen seems linked to Sufi praxis.

The secrecy of the actual beliefs and goals of the movement remind this reader of parent complaints concerning Waldorf schools.

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 03, 2013 10:52PM

Gulen himself lives in Pennsylvania.

More on Gulen and charter schools

[www.google.com]

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 14, 2013 07:37AM

Robert Irwin was at a Sufi zawiya at Mostaganem Algeria for two to three consecutive summers in the 1960s.

He found it to be socially diverse, but the majority of the fuqara were poor. The 'alawiya lineage was brought to the UK not by someone wealthy or influential but by sailors. Yemeni sailors who practiced in this lineage.

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'(Frithjof Schuon) presided over a secretive and Westernised version of Sufism.The secretiveness derived from that of the Freemasons and other occultist groups with whom Guénon and Schuon were familiar, and this secretive elitism was in strong contrast with the social inclusiveness of the 'Alawiya in Mostaganem, Paris,Cardiff and elsewhere. Schuon came to believe that Schuon came to believe that he had gained the spiritual vision to detect the Primordial Wisdom in a variety of ancient traditions...."

Robert Irwin, Memoirs of a Dervish

So beware of any group calling itself Sufi that conducts its affairs in an elitist and secretive manner.

Secrecy absorbs energy and attention, and these are subtracted from your spiritual practice.

Secrecy can give only intensity, and that is a wearisome thing.

Schuon ended up changing rules to suit himself and his group ended up serving his whims and those of his wife.

Stick with sufi groups that are tied to the ummah and community, not secretive clubs.

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 28, 2013 09:59AM

Some common sense about dress from a Muslim website

[webcache.googleusercontent.com]

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the real sufi is he who should become the complete reflection and shadow of the sunnah. When anyone sees him they are reminded of the messenger of Allah. On the other hand, the Sufis of today, rather than this, they remind a person of that particular group which he/she belongs to. The founding father of the group instead of reminding the people of the messenger of Allah! This defeats of the objective, since the objective of following the sunnah WAS to embody the prophetic ways and not the ways of one particular shaykh

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Sufi dress code
During Asr today at our local mosque, just before the takbeer ulla (the first takbeer for the commencement of salah) was made. We had an influx of sufis enter the masjid and join the jamat. Instantly those present at the masjid could see they were part of a tariqa, due the uniform they were wearing. whom seem to be passing by and came to join the jamat. The strange thing was though, their entrance, and their uniform gave them an immediate image of distinction. Anyone present could understand they were a group, who were, in turn (most likely) part of a larger group.


My point of this is, most if not all the sufi groups which are prevalent across the world have a distinctive uniform. Any new comer who joins the group is either given the uniform and requested to wear the garments. Or Secondly, many who do not advocate such actions, indirectly allude to the new comer to dress accordingly, or the shaykh himself will hint towards the superiority of the group’s dress code compared to others.

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The real shaykh will always alternate between the way he dresses. The prophet (saw) would wear a hat aswell as wear a turban. He (saw) did not only stick to wearing a hat or a turban. Anyone who ALWAYS wears the hat, or the turban, has moved away from the closeness of the sunnah. Although he will be rewarded for wearing the hat or the turban, but it will not be the total closeness to the sunnah!

It is recorded in the scriptures that he(saw) would wear the turban. Not only that, but he would change the colour of his turban periodically and not stick to one particular colour. There are four colours which he (saw) would wear predominately, they were: white, black, brownish, and dark green coloured turban. He (saw) would not stick to only one colour of the turban. As many people tend to do. Many say, that he (saw) loved white, that’s why they wear the white turban, always. Nevertheless, He (saw) did not wear this all the time, although that was his favourite colour!

In the indian-subcontinent this is very clear, one such group whom are very popular and a very well known throughout the world are the Dawati Islami brothers. The brothers doing excellent work of Islam. Unfortunately, they are very distinctive in their dress code. The bright green turban and the white selwar khamis. Although to wear the turban is a great act of virtue, nonetheless they have coined it to their own school uniform. Rather than wearing the uniform of sunnah, since we are only from the school of the beloved messenger (saw) and no one else.

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 28, 2013 10:13AM

Much of the Dar al Islam was converted by the example set by wandering dervishes who chose to leave home and settled in remote areas.

These persons had the strength of faith and bravery needed to leave home after the years spent in study and prayer with one or more teachers.

Many of these pioneers lived rough. White clothing would have rapidly become begrimed.

Therefore one sign of a good spiritual leader (Pir, Sheikh, Murshid) is that he or she will imbue students with ability to go forth, not keep them in perpetual spiritual and social dependance.

Beware of any tariqua in which unhealthy dependance centers upon the leader, and where members pray only with each other, avoid going to Masjid with the community at large, or only go to Masjid to make themselves conspicuous by an affectation of piety.

It is worth remembering that Sufis were at first known for wearing wool, often patched clothing. And they dressed according to the needs of the climate they lived in.

In Central Asia, dervishes wore sheepskin coats and fur lined hats.

In Sehwan Pakistan, devotees of Lal Shah Baz have been known for wearing all or mostly red clothes, especially at the yearly urs festival.

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 30, 2013 08:57PM

[salamibaloney.blogspot.com]

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Monday, February 16, 2009
Hi, everybody!

I was a member of the fuquara years ago, when it was only Sidi himself, not Ibrahim, that was running things. I am in a bit of a quandry as to whether or not to pursue an 'dissenter' website, as I have mostly put whatever abuses I experienced behind me, or chalked them up as 'learning experiences'.

Everybody leaving a totalistic religion, cult, or society has regrets, both for leaving and for joining. At some times I yearn for the experience of being taken care of in a certain way, having access to a direct conduit to God, that I experienced in Sidi's group.

On the other hand, I was relieved I didn't any longer have to make excuses for the inappropriate and incredible things I witnessed there, the foremost of which was a fascination with 'spiritual' marriages which linked 'beloveds' of totally different ages, temperments, and socio-economic backgrounds.

It is not for me to try and understand Sidi's psychology. Perhaps there is more wisdom than darkness there. I would not go so far as to accuse him of being a fraud. I would say that he was put in the position of being the mouthpiece of the Eternal God by his followers, at least, and in my observation, he did nothing to disenamour them of this notion.

Today, he seems happily linked to one of the most ridiculously vapid New Age Alternative Healing peddlars of expensive hokum you might ever wish NOT to find. That person now purports to be able to cure cancer and AIDS. I am NOT kidding here!

Sadly, that person's wife died of cancer and he wasn't able to heal HER!

I never had experiences with that person, if you did, please leave them here! I fail to understand the attraction to him, though I can to Sidi.

Whether you believe in God, Islam, Sufism, or nothing, I think everyone should be allowed to ask questions. Life can be brutal, maybe life IS brutal. You get a taste of that and you want comfort. Someone shows up and says, 'I can help you understand and transcend that'. You're vulnerable and you want to believe. Then the Guide marries you to someone. Now you are REALLY committed. Some, if not all, of the old pain is gone. HURRAY!

So where has Jane gone? Jane is now Jamila. A new being, made by the Guide and with a new family of brothers and sisters. A holier, better family.

You might as well think of the Guide as God, because he as done what God did, created a new being out of nothing. It's all so easy, right?

A spiritual path and life does NOT depend on your pledging allegiance to a human teacher. In fact, I think one can in effect 'pass' on one's spiritual quest by merely following someone else instead of being ruthlessly honest about one's own drawbacks, addictions, shortcomings, etc.

Well, anyway, you can respond here, start a thread of your own. I don't want to ruin someone's party. But, on the other hand, if you don't have doubts, why are you reading this? Peace!
Posted by Salami Baloney at 9:49 AM

25 comments:
AnonymousJuly 23, 2009 at 2:36 PM
From the outside, Ibrahim Jaffee looks like such an obvious publicity hound, accumulating titles for himself and inventing meaninnless degree programs and holistic health certifications, all of which seem to be rather pricey!

I've been told you have to pay a certain amount of money for a particular kind of fuqara HAT! GEEZ, LOUISE!

The fact that Sidi would let a charlatan like this operate with his sanction probably tells you all you need to know about Sidi himself.

Although who bothers to check the Internet for references on your New Sheik!

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AnonymousSeptember 16, 2009 at 5:14 AM
All very good comments and criticism. I'm currently a student of Sidi and Dr. Jaffee and have nothing but great things to say about these sincere men. I'm coming from a place of being a grown adult who can make my own decisions. I'm looking for help and guidence and I'm getting it. I dissagree with those who like to hand over complete controll to someone else. At the school we talk a lot about personal responsibility. Perhaps this was not always the case. I see the cultish behavior, especially in the old timers, and it seems to be coming from the bottom and not from the top of the orginization. However, as noted above, the leader should be held repsonsible for allowing this attitude to grow. Perhaps I will politely ask Sidi about what to make of people who are making an idol out of him.

"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." ~Plato

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AnonymousDecember 31, 2009 at 3:18 AM
All I am going to state here is my federally protected freedom of speech and is my own opinion.

I left this group a while ago and this whole group is basically a fraud. A sophisticated scam and a pyramid scheme. They lie about what the "donations" are about and Sidi himself lies about the entire money issue too.

Sidi's second hand man is a man who runs a pyramid scheme for a living and one of the products he sold ended up killing people and got shut down. He activily recrouts new people to his pyramid schemes in the community.

Anyone who endorses con men who run pyramid schemes and someone who uses his MD as a way to get people to pay thousands of dollars for his fake "healings" is not a person to be trusted. I realized Sidi himself is a fraud as there is no other rational explaination for his behavior and of those he put in positions of power.

The healing school is nothing more than an indoctornation system for this cult and also the main revenue source. It is nothing but a scam also.

This group is a cult with abusive behavior. They condone the abuse when it is done by their "teachers" and "leaders" and by Sidi and is covered up like in all religious groups.

If those still in the group doubt this, all the evidence is there to see. Go search for "cults" on google and see how many of the characteristics apply.

This group lies about everything and exploits people who are hurting and desperate. Not any different than 99% of all new age healing and spiritual groups as well as most organized religion.

They condone materialism, while pushing their over priced gift where they guage people and justify it by being for "god"

They are hyprocrites and liars and it is a cult that epxloits people for money and in other ways.

The books that sidi is supposed to write that comes out every year is nothing but a sham. They say the same shit which has no meaning in different ways and not so different. The exact same phrases are repeated over and over and these $40 books are nothing but a revenue machine for the group.

All this stuff is out there in the open to see if people want to see it. Go read about cults and see how many apply to this group.

I am glad I got out before I gave them any real money or got more abuse and damage from them. Most of the members and teachers are deeply wounded people who treat others poorly and abuse other people and justify their behavior through "god"

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AnonymousJune 12, 2011 at 11:36 PM
Hello All,

I stumbled upon this page only to check out this Sidi person because he is holding a national conference here in Florida in just 2 months. If he is a fraud, or you just "suspect" he is a fraud. please do not be afraid to notify the local F.B.I. who are always looking out for Islamic scams and also start a blog or group on the Internet to warn people about this person. I dont know anything about him. I was hoping to find out about sufism as I love when people bond with singing and dancing who are strangers. But please, if you know something, do not keep silent. Do you want that on your conscious? If he is truly a messenger of God, then we cannot get him in trouble can we? God bless all tellers of the truth.

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AnonymousApril 23, 2013 at 11:38 PM
Please report this group to FBI. they have the potential to kill people with false claims of curing cancer, etc. clinical malpractice should not be allowed. Any thorough investigation will unearth all their scams and people who have died from their 'healing clinics' but do not know that the real cause of death was not seeking appropriate medical attention and being encouraged to use spurious treatment instead.

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AnonymousAugust 2, 2013 at 5:35 PM
Why don't you report?

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AnonymousOctober 1, 2011 at 9:36 AM

I went to someone's commitment ceremony in Texas under this religion. I think it was done by Sidi Jamal - he was really old and didn't seem in good health. Anyway, I tend to pick up on energy and be intuitive and I did not want to be in this room with all of these people. I had a bad feeling and felt anxious. When the couple went to be committed by him I was more uncomfortable because they wanted all of us to sit in a circle around the ceremony. I was about 4 feet from who I think was Sidi. As it went on I got more and more uncomfortable and things started to get weird for me. Sounds and voices faded away and my vision dulled and I saw a slow swirling of black smoke around this guy that was just hovering around. I couldn't figure out what I was seeing but felt the hair on my neck start to stand up and began telling myself to calm down and tried to think positive things about my space and 'protect' it from this energy. I looked over at my boyfriend and he looked terrorized. He was white and just looked scared. I held his hand and when it was over,we ran out of there before his sister could even turn around. We literally ran to the car and got out of there as quick as we could. Later, his sister asked what we thought and we didn't know what to say. Shed just gotten committed by this mystical guy she believes in and wants an honest opinion but we couldn't tell her we thought he was a cult leader or worse, a truly evil being....it was scary and I don't know what the black smoke meant but a couple Indian friends said it was very bad and to see it means to get away from a bad spirit. Like I say, I'm not sure what this was all about but I do get feelings or see colors around people sometimes and this was the most negative thing I'd ever experienced.

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AnonymousNovember 28, 2011 at 10:40 PM

I was with this cult from the beginning child to adult. I knew his wife very well and was a close friend of the children. I can see why people get wrapped up in this cult at first your lost they tell they can give your life true meaning ect. Plus there is strong energy that comes off jaffe and sidi that is intense and draws you in but remember not nessearyly good. Jaffe is a scammed and mostly just cares about power and mobey. He makes everybody else give there job up and hand over there life savings tells god wants you to give up everything. Meanwhile he drives a brand new BMW sports car role. And nice house. Him and his wife did not get along and were no longer I. Love she wanted to leave back to Germany to her family and made her stY she was very depressed. After she passed away from can er a few months later he married a 20 yearold, got her pregnant and sent his kids off to live with there grandparents because his new wife couldn't get along with them. This man is selfish and shallow. There is so much more maby another day .

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interestingDecember 9, 2011 at 8:54 AM
hi

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AnonymousJuly 14, 2012 at 2:37 PM
The leaders of this group are masters at energetic manipulation and they know what makes people tick. They take advantage of people who are suffering. They profess to be muslims though many have no interest in knowing or following the sharia/sunna. The leaders do not discourage being idolized by their students, and many seem to feed off it. Many, many followers end up financially broke after paying exhorbinate prices for Sidi's remedies, donations, and 'healings'. Sadly, they are peddling islamic novelties.

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AnonymousJanuary 8, 2013 at 9:57 AM
I have followed Sidi's teachings for 9 years now. Sidi's teachings are only about the love, peace, mercy, and justice for all and my experience is that he only wants to give to people. His teachings have helped me in many ways. Sadly, the people who have written on this site don't understand him, but he has helped many, many people all around the world. Sidi's remedies work and are much less expensive than allopathic medicines. I have found that Ibrahim Jaffe cares deeply for people and he has also helped to heal many people of many different illnesses. I have seen many people's lives greatly improved by following Sidi's teachings. If you are reading this blog and are interested, I suggest you find out for yourself what this is about and not blindly believe what is written on this blog.

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AnonymousMarch 7, 2013 at 6:50 AM
I am not surprised at the previous comments and I was skeptical and suspicious when I first met both of these people over a decade ago.Not because of what I heard but my fear of being taken advantage of or being manipulated by my so called "teachers" or those in authority or know more as I had been in the past and I believed strongly in not idolizing people before God. However, over time I was proved wrong. While Ibrahim Jaffe did have issues in the past and I saw him in more of his ego in the late 90's and early 2000's, he changed so dramatically much over time because of the Sufi teaching given by Sidi al-Jamal, he became a completely different person! I bet if any of the people who commented from 2005 on met him now, they would not recognize him or think he was the same person! Sidi always tell people not to thank him or praise him but thank Allah/God and puts God first. I also saw many others change deeply or heal serious illnesses because of Sufi healing. People can not fake/ pretend to heal from serious emotional problems or serious illness like cancer. And if you do not believe in the power of God to heal anyone, there is nothing anyone can say as proof. However, one person above so wisely suggested, check out these Sidi al Jamal or Ibrahim Jaffe now for yourself and YOU decide. Many young children have a great sense of knowing the good and the bad intuitively. I was shocked when my shy 4 year old who does not even run up to hug his known relatives ( except parents & grandparents) or want to say hello to close relatives at times and especially strangers, ran up to Sidi before I even introduced them and he hugged this complete stranger. My older son at age 8 who never met or heard about Sidi, saw a photo of Sidi on a back of a book I had and he said "Mommy who is this man? He has so much love!!!" Children can recognize truth and goodness and have less past experiences and fears to cover up the truth. God knows if we are telling the truth or we believing illusion or are writing slander. And it is always between us and God.

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AnonymousMarch 12, 2013 at 9:35 PM
Sidi Muhammad al-Jamal, Ibrahim Jaffe, and the University of Spiritual Healing and Sufism comments

Regarding the previous two commentors, the fact that you are reading and commenting here is an indication you must be having doubts about Sidi al Jamal or Ibrahim Jaffe. Do you always choose your spiritual leaders based on intuition or did you thoroughly research their backgrounds before you made any commitment? Were you aware of adultery allegations? Do not ignore these or other stories you may have heard. A leader having sexual relations with beloveds is never ok, even if you're told it will make you closer to, or be in unity with God, and is an exception from him. Did you ever speak to anyone who is no longer a follower? If not, why? There are many.....who are alive and well.

In order to gain a better perspective, do a search on (deleted for brevity), Singer's Conditions for Thought Reform, or Lifton's Criteria for Thought Reform and see for yourself how they can apply to this group. You should also search cult warning signs and characteristics of cult leaders. Unfortunately, you've been a victim of very sophisticated mind control techniques.

I share the opinion as previously stated above, that the "University of Spiritual Healing and Sufism" is part of a cleverly disguised indoctrination system, also including the "Path of Love" and all the other retreats, etc.. Cults routinely use weekend workshops in order to get people into an unfamiliar environment (often remote) where they can control things such as diet, sleep, privacy, etc., and use various trance induction techniques so that they can subtly take control of a person's mind. Love-bombing is also commonly used.

A new name, a new identity, and a new belief system is created. Sadly, most of us are unaware of these covert techniques until it is too late and we are already victims. No one under mind control ever knows they're under mind control!!!! Therefore it can happen to ANYONE, no matter how educated they are. Other good, idealistic and well-intentioned people are also unwittingly deceptively recruited and help fuel the indoctrination machine.

Leaders who are almost always very charismatic are central in cults. It is very easy for us to be taken advantage of by people like Sidi and Jaffe who have mastered all the tricks of the trade.

Don't give them another dime and see just how much love, peace, mercy, and justice you receive. You'll most likely discover that the "Love" is conditional---based on your financial contributions. Ask about where the donations to SIDI really go and to see evidence. See if you get a straight answer. Authentic teachers and healthy spiritual groups welcome inquiry and show accountability. They encourage questions and give direct answers. Keep searching and keep questioning. There are many of us out there who have been deeply damaged and victimized. We need to speak up and speak out. Remember, you are not alone.


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AnonymousMarch 20, 2013 at 11:21 PM
Reading some of the comments, I feel that there are some people who are afraid of Islam commenting on here, but for the person saying he was a follower and now is not, I would like to know what is it exactly that took you out of this Sufi Order? The fact that somebody was hallucinating about black smoke shows a lot in regards to the 'evil within' themselves. When you see such manifestations, they are of your own will not that of Sidi, who is a very enlightened individual.

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AnonymousMarch 27, 2013 at 10:25 PM
I am not a member of this group, but have participated in some of their meetings and gatherings. I've attended one workshop and two lectures offered by Ibrahim Jaffe. The first lecture had a positive effect on me, and brought some light into my heart, while the next two (a lecture with some healing and a day-long workshop) did not.

Instead of light, I felt darkness and despair in my heart. It took a while to get rid of this state. As for Sidi, I have never met him. He appears to be charismatic and has a luminous face (in his pictures), but I don't know why I don't get a good feeling by looking at him. From a far relative who used to be a student at USHS, I have heard not very positive things about those at the head of this organization. But as for the followers, I find them very sincere, truthful and spiritual. I enjoy participating in their spiritual circles which enlightens my heart. And the fact that this organization is always trying to make as much money as possible from everything hurts me.

I am writing these because I am very much concerned about the negative effects that some shaykhs may have on the minds of those Americans who in search of Truth join enthusiastically these Sufi orders and might end up hating Sufism and Islam as a whole; while they should differentiate between true and false Sufism.
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AnonymousApril 11, 2013 at 11:10 AM
I don't think anyone here is afraid of, or against Islam/Sufism in any way. They are merely attempting to warn other good people about two unethical individuals. I cannot speak for others, but what tainted my view of this particular Sufi order was validating accounts of sex between leaders/followers and knowledge or participation by some of the inner circle over the course of many years.

It is not difficult to search the internet to find which Sufi groups are reported to be cultic. It is well worth the time and effort.

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AnonymousJuly 17, 2013 at 8:29 AM

I belonged to the Shadhilyya sect for many years. I took the bayat from Sidi himself.
I left because I did not find any peace, help, etc in Sidi's practices and decided to take another path.
Jaffe is a hustler and a liar. Charges ridiculous amounts of money for healings that all turn out to be bullshit.
Sidi tried to marry me to a woman I had nothing in common with. I refused. At our gatherings when Sidi comes to the US, he is constantly asking for money. Not only do you pay for the retreat, but with each teaching, Sidi needs a "sacrifice check". He is more concerned about money than his followers' souls. His expensive books are poorly written and don't explain shit! I left sufism-and islam-for good and have been much healthier and happier!
Watch out for Amina al Jamal too! She's a crafty mouthpiece for Sidi's bullshit.

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AnonymousAugust 2, 2013 at 5:33 PM
Most people with negative comments did not provide any specifics. I don't trust everything I read on the Internet. There is no way to judge this group or any such group without having personal experience. I attended one of the retreats with this group and found no objectionable behaviors. They seem to be genuine in their spiritual pursuit. Nobody was forcing anything on anybody. I have attended similar Hindu, and Christian gathering. They all feel "unfamiliar". People who are commenting here are searching for something. I suggest reading Rumi. I bet you will find the peace you are looking for. May God bless you all.

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AnonymousAugust 6, 2013 at 8:35 PM
I am contemplating attending a workshop this weekend. I have often wondered based on the person's actions who introduced this to me if he hasn't been abducted if you will by a cult. On the one hand, I see the heart in his Sufi practice. On te other I see a devout, almost defensive stance against anyone or anything that questions it. I had an instinct to check the web on Jaffe. I am glad I did. I have witnessed cult behavior before; if it's there, I suspect I will recognize it pretty quickly. Stay tuned...

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AnonymousAugust 6, 2013 at 11:31 PM
Some people may find the comments posted by someone called "Lover of God" to the following forum useful. This is a follow up of my previous post to this forum on March 27th, 2013.

[forum.culteducation.com]

"I am familiar with this group. It has its issues, but by and large it helps alot of people deepen their spirituality. For the handful of negative stories, there are thousands of active participants in the U.S. and many more around the world who get alot out of it and feel it is very positive for them. Keep in mind this group is mostly made up of converts, although in the last few years it has attracted more Muslim-born immigrants. The majority of the membership are intelligent, educated professionals. Think psychologists, doctors, business people. These are people who would be critical of any hokum pokum as they have a good head on their shoulders. Sufi masters who aren't the real deal sometimes get away with stuff in the East when their membership is poor and undeducated. Just visit a Sufi shrine in India to get a sense of that. Harder to do that with a highly intelligent, educate membership. Sidi Mohammed al-Jamal is the real deal, a widely respected religious figure known throughout the Muslim world. His community in the UK predates the one in the U.S. and the group in both countries ais full of wonderful, loving people."
. . .

Continued on the page introduced above.


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AnonymousAugust 8, 2013 at 2:54 PM
I was a student with Jaffe 1996 at The School of Energy Mastery .I still use what I learned from him and his gifted teachers today in my practice. He was a warm, loving ,caring person and I was excited to find out he was coming to my area this weekend. I am not interested in Sufism but I wanted to re-connect with the Jaffe I remembered at the school, as the school was life changing. I have never found anything like it or teachers like those that were there since. However,after reading these blogs I am really not sure if I want to go . To be sure I will form my own opinion but I have to say I am really shocked by what I have read.
I will keep you posted if I go.


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AnonymousAugust 8, 2013 at 10:56 PM
www.rense.com/general26/raidersofthelost.htm

You may want to read this if you're having second thoughts.

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AnonymousAugust 15, 2013 at 11:45 PM
I have been practicing Sufism with the Shadduliyah order for the last 3 years. In my personal experience it has deepened my life tremendously and I feel more peace and happiness. I say with all clarity that this spirituality is not a cult. All of my brothers and sisters in this path of some of the most kind and genuine people I have met.

A background story. A few years ago I smoke marijuana almost religiously. I don't even know why, I didn't even enjoy it a lot of the time. And, it changed my perception of reality. I was viewing life through the fantasies in my head. When I stopped smoking marijuana altogether, I started feeling much more clear. So a question to everyone with negative experiences with the Sufi path. Are you smoking marijuana, or drinking alcohol, or engaging in any other addictive behavior? Are you following the path wholeheartedly, or are you slacking off? It is impossible transform your life through Sufism if you continue to live unhealthily; it is in contradiction to the spiritual path. In a related sidenote, my Aikido teacher once said, "you cannot blame any martial art if you are not doing it correctly." Sorry for the rant. But I think everyone needs to look at themselves before blaming an organization or person.

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AnonymousAugust 16, 2013 at 10:12 PM
A person who is in a cult doesn't know that they are in a cult.

That's the dilemma!!!

Most cult members are very "normal" people. They are typically educated, intelligent, and idealistic. Often, they're highly successful professionals. Cults know they make the best recruits. (Destructive cults all operate basically the same way)


Remember, it's NOT the devotees, it's the LEADERS.



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AnonymousAugust 26, 2013 at 9:17 AM
This path has been the biggest blessing of my life. Through the practices I have more love, gratitude, self-awareness, social responsibility, joy and contentment than I ever thought possible. Follow the love, fear and pain lead to more fear and pain. I used to blame everything and everyone for my suffering and it kept me a prisoner. When I finally realized that everything that happened "to me" from the "outside" was truly a hidden place inside myself that needed to change. This path is not for the faint of heart. People are people and Allah is Allah. Everyone will make mistakes, who are we to judge, judge yourself and your own actions. It is ok to hate something someone does. The healing happens when you allow them back into your heart, even if they are no longer physically in your life. This keeps the flow of love moving and will heal any illness. Sidi is a human, he has made mistakes and I have personally witnessed him crying for his mistakes and asking Allah for forgiveness. Ibrahim is a human he makes mistakes and likewise I have seen and heard him apologize publicly for his actions. All of you who were hurt, I am truly sorry. I sometimes thank Allah that I found the path in 2006. Although anything that happened in the past can be healed if you are willing to let it go. Allah says in His Quran to the Messenger (SAWS) you are but a messenger. Sidi, Ibrahim and all teachers put themselves out there for all to judge and continue against much criticism and I am grateful. Allow yourself to find out for yourself. God is greater than all of creation, He will not lead you astray. By the way, I was raised Catholic, found the Sufi path and now embrace Islam, however will attend and pray with anyone who loves God/Allah. Make no separation and if separation is what you see, then look to yourself, love yourself. Peace and blessings to you all. oh and I found this site and it intrigued me to hear and see all of this. I heard most of this when I started the path, but I followed my own heart, had my own journey and I encourage all of you to do the same.

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Re: A Sufi Cult
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: August 30, 2013 09:08PM

[www.khalidzaheer.com]

Concerns about Tassawuf from an Islamic perspective.

If a Murshid is legitimate, he or she should always, always point students toward the Prophet and community at large, not create a secretive, elitist fraternity.

And never turn that community into a private emirate where the Murshid rules as a divine right monarch and his or her whims and greed are tolerated or excused as 'path of blame'.

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Mysticism in Islam: Virtues and evils of Tasawwuf
Question:
What in your opinion are the virtues and evils of Tasawwuf?

Response:
My opinion is that Tasawwuf has the following problems from an Islamic point of view:

i) In Tasawwuf one has to be unconditionally obedient to one’s Murshid (spiritual guide in Tasawwuf). This blind acquiescence to someone other than the prophet, alaihissalaam, is an un-Islamic approach.

The Qur’an tells us that we are responsible for our own deeds and that, on the Day of Judgment, the excuse that an individual followed his leader unwittingly would not be entertained at all as an excuse for a religiously incorrect behavior.

ii) Many of the practices in Tasawwuf which a Murshid Sheikh demands of his docile disciple (Mureed) do not originate from the prophet, alaihissalaam. Such so-called spiritual practices are common amongst people of different faiths. For instance, many concentration exercises (muraqabah) amongst Sufis are the ones that you would find amongst the Hindus in their Yoga exercises as well. I remember when a couple of years ago the famous Sufi Nuh Keller came to LUMS, I attended one of his sessions. During that session he chanted some dhikr (words for God’s remembrance) in a peculiarly distinct tune repeatedly. I immediately recalled the tune of it because I had only heard it a few days ago on a Sony-channel religious program where a Hindu Yogi was chanting a mantra in exactly the same tune before a large group of his disciples.

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iv) Sufis believe that the entire existence is a part of God. “There is no one except Allah (la moujuda illallah)” is the ultimate Kalima of Sufis. The Kalima ‘La Ilaha Illallah’ is for the ordinary people and the beginner Sufis.

v) For a Sufi, Khatme Nubuwwat doesn’t mean that angels cannot come to communicate with humans anymore. Sufi saints have all along claimed that they have been receiving guidance from angels directly. If you read the da’wah literature of Ahmadis (Qadianis) you would find that they are challenging the Muslim claim that it is a unanimous Muslim understanding that the chain of the prophets has come to an end after prophet Muhammad, alaihisslaam, by presenting volumes of evidences from Sufi literature which claim that angels of God have very much been visiting Muslim Sufis after prophet Muhammad, alaihissalaam. (If you want to know the truth of these experiences, please read my article “Experiencing Jinn” on my site www.khalidzaheer.com).

Please don’t consider the last three points as exaggerated claims. There are scores of evidences to prove them from the writings of famous Sufis like Abu Ismaeel Harwi, Imam Ghazzali, Shah Waliullah, Shah Ismaeel Shaheed, Ibne Arabi etc. If anyone claims that the Sufi understanding is anything otherwise, he is either unaware or lying with the ‘noble’ purpose of not causing people to be upset on receiving such shocking revelations. It is only through gradual indoctrination that a docile Mureed starts believing in all these ‘truths’ when he reaches the higher spiritual levels to experience them himself.


However, Tasawwuf has its virtues as well. The following are some of them:

i) Sufis are very good at reaching out to people through effective psychological techniques. They know how to influence people; for that purpose they work really hard. They would spend long hours at times even with a single individual, solving his/her even very small worldly problems. Alongside that, they are so pleasant, polite, and soft in their approach in such a way that an ordinary person can’t fail to be impressed by them. They maintain a good group of a number of disciples who together form a strongly knit unit. The members of a Sufi group are like a very strongly knit family with the Murshid as its central, galvanizing force.

ii) The exercises of dhikr suggested by Sufis and the other things suggested in the path of Tasawwuf (tareeqat) give people doing them a sense of relief from tension, a feeling of solace.

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