| By Nafees Jamali |
Pulling everyone with a strong divine attraction, Sufism has an undisputed effect on the culture of Pakistan.
The word Sufism is derived from the Arabic word ṣūfī or ṣūf meaning “wool”. Somewhat Sufism in literary meaning is “to dress in wool”. That meaning also suggests the nature of Sufi as humble or modest.
Sufism is not a sect of any religion, it’s much more than that; it’s a much deeper intervention of the spiritual apprehension of knowledge inaccessible to the intellect.
Foundation of Sufism has deeper roots connecting it to the early asceticism in Islam, where people tied themselves to the much greater force than dividing as a group or community. Though formerly Sufism was somehow connected to the non-religious sources established in ancient Europe and the subcontinent but later on it all cleared out as a movement of an early Islamic asceticism and the foreign elements were discovered to be the ribbon on the drafts and nothing more.
Muslim Sufism has played a great role in stretching and growing spiritual knowledge in the Muslim community and somewhat eliminating the dry rules set by the followers later on without any deeper meaning and connection to the actual subject.
Sufism has been involved in a large scale of missionary activities, that has left its signs all around the world.
Sufism spread through “Darvishi” and poetry, mainly in Islamic attributed nations. A wide collection of Sufi poetry can be found in languages such as, Persian, Urdu, Pashto, Turkish, and Sindhi along with the existence of great Sufi saints in the similar languages spoken in parts of the world. These languages helped in spreading Sufism in later parts of the world along with producing great spiritual leaders and poets of their times.
Sufism is not limited as a belief system but is a way of life, a tradition of enlightenment through different forms and expressions that carries the essential truth forwards regardless of the customs and cultures and it evolves through the most artistic ways than any form of spirituality has ever witnessed in any age.
Sufism’s stance on universality is based on the recognition that there is only one true God. A God of humanity and all true religions. Sufism itself is the understanding of teachings of prophets of all the nations and cultures, throughout the existence of this temporary world.
In the world today, diversity exists under the banner of Sufism that involves both those that claim Sufism can exist not without the foundation of Islam and those that follow the leads of many Sufis that are unrelated to Islam and its teachings.
Regardless of that sufism keeps thriving as one of the greatest spiritual ways of life that pulls humanity closer to its true Lord.