Saturday, September 18, 2010
The Forgotten Islam
For the most dedicated critics of Islam -- those better described as "Islamophobes" -- Sufism is not only the Islam they forgot. Rather, Sufism is the Islam they refuse to even acknowledge.
Sufism could perhaps best be described as the Salvation Army of Islam.
Sufism combines the joyous music and adulation of God with the generous philanthropic outlook of the Salvation Army.
Sufism refutes the iconoclastic nature of Islam, and finds its route to God through music and art -- much to the objection of Muslim fundamentalists.
Contrary to the stereotype of Islam as backward and culturally stagnant, Sufism is progressive and culturally dynamic. Sufi musicians experiment openly with their stylings, including flirting with electronic music.
It's a shame that Sufism has become the forgotten Islam. It should be the Islam that everyone remembers.