Although this essay was intended to be an attempt to answer the question:" Is Sufism A Persuasion Of Islam? ", the massive knowledge accumulated from reviews of, and researches about, Sufism and Sufis, had compelled the writer of this essay to divide it into two parts. Part One will be concentrated on answering the question as expressed previously and in the title of this essay. And Part Two will focus on the imperative requirements, in order to be a Sufis,since Sufism without Sufis will remain just a word, having concept and meaning,but with no adherents or practitioners. Hence, in order to develop an objective comprehension of the essence of Sufism, one must be familiar with what it really takes to be a Sufi. Hence, Part Two will show the readers the imperative levels or stages that a man or a woman must meet in order to become a genuine adherent to Sufism.
It has always been the intent of the writer to provide the readers with brief outlines of the subject matters he writes about; and avoid burdening the readers with unnecessary information that may confuse the novice reader.
Part One: Is Sufism A Persuasion Of Islam?
The title of this essay is related to an essay entitled, "Sufism And Sufis", dated May 5,2012 and published on this website. Therefore, it is recommended to read it, before reading what is coming bellow in this essay. It is easy to get. Just Google the following words:
Sufism And Sufis By Reviews by Sodium.
In that essay entitled, "Sufism And Sufis" of May 5,2012, the following question has been raised:
Is Sufism an integral part of Islam?
The answer that was given was "Yes and No". Such an answer has not been satisfactory to some readers, not even to the writer of that essay of May 5, 2012. Hence, this attempt seems to be in order:
The "Yes" Answer is based on the fact that many Islamic scholars, Imams and Historians have considered Sufism as an order of Islam. Also, many of them such as Rumi and Al-Ghazali practiced Sufism and thus considered themselves Sufis.
The "No" Answer is based on the fact that some order of Islam,such as Wahabism,one of the most conservative order of Islam, does not consider Sufism as an integral part of Islam,since it does not believe that dancing,music,poetry and the arts in general, as essentials to worship God, while Sufism and Sufis do. In fact, Sufis are proud of their Sufism. Another reason that gives credence to the "No" Answer is the fact that there are people who are not Muslims, but practice Sufism in their spiritual meditations.
As one considers the facts supporting the "Yes" Answer and the facts supporting the "No" Answer,one finds himself or herself in a dilemma and has to accept both answers until a way is found out of the dilemma and thus consider themselves Sufis.
Perhaps,one way out of the dilemma is to compare the very fundamental tenets of Islam and compare them to the very fundamental tenets of Sufism:
Fundamental Tenets Of Islam:
~ Tawheed, meaning,the belief in the Oneness of God.
~ The Qur'an and authentic Hadiths are the ultimate references,to a Muslim
~ Adherence to ethics and morality and cleanliness in conducting one's mundane or worldly life.
~ Humility in prayers to, and love of, God.
~ Adherence firmly to the Five Pillars of Islam.
Fundamental Tenets Of Sufism:
* Tawheed, meaning, the belief in the Oneness of God.
* The Qur'an and authentic Hadiths are the ultimate references, to a Sufi
* Adherence to ehthics and morality and cleanliness in conducting one's mundane or worldly life.
* Humility in prayers to, and love of,God.
* Adherence firmly to the five pillars of Islam.
* Practicing dancing, music,singing, or poetry,as tools to reach to, and communicate with, The Divine (God).
Comparing the Fundamental Tenets Of Sufism with the Fundamental Tenets of Islam,as shown above,it is obvious that Sufism has all the six fundamental tenets of Islam. In fact,with the exception of practicing dancing, music, singing, or poetry that Sufism embodies, all the other five fundamental tenets are identical to the fundamental tenets of Islam. Therefore, Sufism can be considered, at least, a Persuasion of Islam,if not a fully pledged Order of Islam.
The writer of this essay has deliberately used the word "Persuasion" instead of "Order", in due respect to those who do not consider Sufism as an "Order" of Islam, for the two facts pointed out and specified in the course of discussion, in this essay.