The Islamic Sufi Tradition - the Muslim Approach Towards Peace Building


The Islamic Sufi Tradition - the Muslim Approach Towards Peace Building

This Sufi way is an authentic Islamic approach towards peace building. Sufism’s doctrinal principles of “Sulh-i Kul” (peace with all), serious meditation, simplicity of lifestyle, and a life of deep contemplation to seek the divine.

Location: global
Members: 41
Latest Activity: Apr 25, 2012

Discussion Forum

Peace Technology Connects the Mind of Man with Nature's Absolute Peace of Mind

Started by christer olsen, peace analyst. Last reply by Joy Harmon Apr 1, 2009. 4 Replies

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Comment by GOPI KANTA GHOSH on October 3, 2011 at 7:24am
Sufi tradition is better choice for peace...
Comment by ABED MALHAS on May 23, 2011 at 5:44pm

Nobel Prize 4 Children;

The addition of children to Nobel; It will take a moment of your time but will impact for a lifetime; please send Emails to;; to include NOBEL PRIZE 4 CHILDREN; Imagine the great positive effect- to all World children-student-university-education- culture-innovation-education outlet-industry-media-etc.  & all humanity; let us all join to bring this beautiful concept to reality; CASA ( 9680  Member / 155 Country & growing ); Imagine a million child  from UR country or globally; 2 send  emails in one day ( they will be at Guinness World records; Please in any event U do try 2 have an internet corner 4 people 2 debate & send   emails 2 Nobel committee supporting the idea of - NOBEL PRIZE 4 CHILDREN;

Comment by ABED MALHAS on May 23, 2011 at 5:44pm


dear friend my lady   I am honored 2 ,TK U 4 UR positive energy ,support , LOVE 2 ART , children ,humanity & CREATION ,


let US Enhance, Tolerance, Cooperation, Understanding, Acceptance, World Peace ,Confidence ,,Recognition ,Human Rights ,Cultural Enrichment ,Positive Globalization - Love & Help the less fortunate - Love & Protect the Environment;

METHOD CASA is initiating six GLOBAL NEW concepts;

- ART OLYMPIC ( equivalent 2 Sport Olympic )



- CASA ( care and share art ) GLOBAL TOURING EXH.



please inform the leaders of  UR country  , children; students; schools; academics; artists; museum; gallery; art outlets; sponsors; decision maker; celebrity; media; industry; etc.

it will benefit U , them , UR  country & the World
Comment by GOPI KANTA GHOSH on July 7, 2010 at 9:35am
Sufi tradition can only stop terrorism...all for peace
Comment by DOMINIC JAI on November 11, 2009 at 8:07pm
Comment by Joy Harmon on June 26, 2009 at 3:28pm
Dear and beautiful one----your poetry speaks to my heart of loving myself and all grateful am I for the beauty of your heart that you have shared to touch mine so far away, and yet you bring me so close, standing next to you, sharing the joy and the love you feel for life.....We KNOW each other because we KNOW the beauty, the grace, the JOY within our own hearts---they have touched because you took the time from your precious life to reach out to me/us across the ocean of hate and destruction, into the Ocean of Love and Hope. Blessings to you and your peoples. May today be the day that we put down our weapons, reach out our arms of flesh and hug the beings who are so very much like ourselves, so wanting to be hugged and to hug us back.
Comment by J.E.Rash -Shaykh Ahmed A Rashid on June 24, 2009 at 4:55pm
Asalaam alaykum : I was asked to prepare a document for some of the world leaders regarding the Iranian situation. It will be presented to them at an upcoming series of meetings. I am enclosing it for you to see and comment on.
Comment by Joy Harmon on April 1, 2009 at 7:12am
Thank you Sohail for your continuance of opening discussions.....I am listening, reading, contemplating the words that appear here. I will contact you when I have something more certain to say to you. But I thank you for holding the space for this forum to continue. It is so needed here in the US to be able to understand what other people are thinking and be able to FEEL their words as I feel yours!
Again, thank you so much!
Comment by Nicolette on March 5, 2009 at 10:27am
I was just going to send this to Sohail. There's a piece on Sufism in Morocco here...
Comment by J.E.Rash -Shaykh Ahmed A Rashid on March 4, 2009 at 5:12pm
ASA: The strength and beauty of inner and outer peace can be experienced through the expressions of Islam found among those who truly seek out and practice them in the way of Sufism. It gives us the ability to understand what it means when in the Qur'an we read: "Wheresover you turn there is the countenance of Allah" and also understand the essential truth contained in the ayat which states: ' You have eyes but you do not see, ears but you do not hear..." This yearning to "see" and "hear" is inherent in the human heart and soul. The Muslim/Sufi understands this to be 'fitrah' or our essential goodness which certain people intuit and strive to manifest in their life. Today, I am heartened by the attendance at our public darus (talks) suhbet (spiritual gatherings) of many more young adults. There is a resurrgence of interest and curiousity among the younger generation to find deeper personal and collective purpose based on Compassion, Peace, Love, spiritual awakening, Tolerance, Forgiveness, Success with ethical basis etc. I am attaching an article which points this out in Morocco. It is just as true in the USA and other countries both in and outside the Muslim majority nations. But there is cultural resistance to the empowerment of young seekers of knowledge as well as entrenched 'religious' resistance and bias based on fear and desire to hold on to power and misguided interpretations of both Islam and its most dynamic and hopeful expression we call Sufism. The real success comes from sincere, humble and consistent effort ... an effort that becomes more and more fulfilling and joyous as one proceeds. The Prophet Mohammed (peace and blessings upon Him) said: "Seek out knowledge from the cradle to the grave" For the one who would truly wish to be a Sufi it does not mean only intellectual knolwedge but knowledge of the Heart and the subtle organs of perception which we all carry within us. Those , young or older, who seek such knowledge must find the way to gain it...just as in all other aspects of life we seek out and accept guidance. Who among us would desire to have neuro surgery from someone who had only read a book or two or more on the subject but had no personal instruction, guidance, example or careful guidance. Or fly in an airplane piloted by a pilot who only read books on flying ... Intuitively Allah swt has placed within us a sense of guidance...a compass, which points toward that Divine Presence. It is this compass that is pointing the next generation back toward the beauty and the Truth we call Allah others call by other names...
(see below)
Mokhtar Ghambou
Sufism as Youth Culture in Morocco

Morocco owes its image of a modern Muslim nation to Sufism, a spiritual and tolerant Islamic tradition that goes back to the first generations of Muslims and has sustained the religious, social and cultural cohesion of Moroccan society for centuries. Sufism provides answers to some of the most complex issues in the contemporary Muslim world, where youth comprise the majority of the population.

Most Moroccans, young or old, practice one form of Sufism or another. As a deep component of the Moroccan identity, Sufism absorbs all members of society, regardless of age, gender, social status or political orientation.

Moroccan youth are increasingly drawn to Sufism because of its tolerance, its fluid interpretation of the Qur'an, its rejection of fanaticism and its embrace of modernity. Young men and women find in the Sufi principles of "beauty" and "humanity" a balanced lifestyle that allows them to enjoy arts, music and love without having to abandon their spiritual and religious obligations.

Sufi orders exist throughout Morocco. They organize regular gatherings to pray, chant and debate timely topics of social and political importance, ranging from the protection of the environment and social charity to the war on drugs and the threat of terrorism.

Moreover, Sufi gatherings inspire young people to engage in interfaith dialogue, highlighting the universal values Islam shares with Christianity and Judaism - such as the pursuit of happiness, love of one's family, tolerance of racial and religious differences, and the promotion of peace.

Combined, Sufi seminars, chants and trances provide millions of Moroccans with a social medium where the fusion of the sacred and the secular, the soul and the body, and the local and the universal is both possible and enjoyable.

I recently asked Ahmed Kostas, an expert on Sufism and director at the Moroccan Ministry of Religious Affairs in Rabat, why this old spiritual tradition is so popular among modern youth.

"Progress and change," he noted, "are basic tenets of Sufi philosophy."

Sufis distance themselves from fundamentalists, whose vision of Islam is a strict and Utopian emulation of the Prophet Muhammad and his companions, by placing great emphasis on the community's adaptation to the concerns and priorities of modern times. Sufis neither condemn unveiled women nor censure modern means of entertainment. For them, the difference between virtue and vice is determined on the basis of intent, not appearances.

Sufism is so diffuse in Moroccan culture that its role cannot be properly understood if reduced to a sect or shrine; it pervades even those musical trends labeled as "modern" or "Western." Rai, as well as Moroccan versions of hip hop and rap, may seem too earthly or too sensual to be associated with Sufism, yet they draw on Sufi poetry to sing the primordial essence of the human body, the virtues of simplicity, and the healing gifts of Sufi saints, such as Sidi Abderrahman Majdub, Sidi Ahmed Tijani, and Sidi Boumediene-spiritual masters revered by their peers and disciples for having attained spiritual union with God during their earthly lives.

The impact of Sufism on youth culture is more explicit in the lyrics of the urban band Nass Al Ghiwan and the Saharan Gnawa musicians. These two groups have profoundly shaped Moroccan popular music since the 1970s. Ghiwan songs, informed by the hippie style of bands like the Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd, inspire many listeners to a physical response called shatha, a Sufi word that Moroccans use for modern dance.

Gnawa musicians, the descendants of African slaves brought to Morocco between the 12th and 17th centuries, produce a similar effect. Their music is a mix of religious lyrics deeply rooted in the oral tradition of sub-Saharan Africa and melancholic melodies reminiscent of American jazz and blues. The Gnawa performance centers on a spinning body and a high-pitched voice, rhyming poetic verses with Sufi chants in Arabic such as "There is no god but God, and Muhammad is his Messenger." These same words are terrifying when they come from the mouth of the terrorist, but lift the soul when they are sung by pious Muslims, Gnawa and other Sufi-inspired musicians.

Even Fnaire, the most recent hip hop band from Marrakech, identifies itself as a blend of Moroccan Sufi tradition and American rap.

In addition to Moroccans, thousands of young men and women from Europe, America and Africa flock to sacred music festivals organized every summer by Sufi movements throughout Morocco, to sing and celebrate their enthusiasm for life and their commitment to the universal values of peace. The scene at these festivals completely refutes the kind of image that extremists seek to convey to Muslim youth.

It is this fusion of Sufism and modernity that produces a unique aesthetic experience, which is attractive to Moroccan youth who reject extremism and uphold values of a shared humanity.

Mokhtar Ghambou is professor of Postcolonial Studies at Yale University. He is also the founder and president of the American Moroccan Institute (AMI). This article was written for the Common Ground News Service (CGNews).

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