- Jun 27, 2017
The changing image of Sufism in Western eyes is an extremely interesting subject. During the 19 th century and for a lot of the 20 th century Sufism was blamed by Westerners for the decline of the Islamic- certainly forms of Sufism that degenerated played a part in that- however since the 1960s we have seen a complete reversal of that. Sufism though it does exist to a lesser extent among the Shia is basically part of orthodox Sunni Islam- Sufis may have "ecumenical" feelings towards Christians and believing Jews however you will find that the vast majority believe that atheists, Hindus, Buddhists, etc are headed for the hell fire. A Sufi in London told me that while he believed that the majority of "Eastern" Christians (in that he included groups like the Russians and Greeks) would enter Paradise the destination of the vast majority of Western Christians was the hell fire. He also thought executing people for homosexual acts was perfectly legitimate as long as it was not done on a vigilante basis. What is the armed wing of Hamas called? Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades. Who was Izz ad-Din al-Qassam? A major Sufi Saint of the 20 th century. The suicide bombing of the second Intifada which by the way I have no problems with and which was supported by the way by Archbishop Theodosios Hanna was very much a Sufi thing.
Beware of taking things that Sufis have said that were aimed at pious Muslims in order to break the shackles of their egos for some Levantine form of Quakerism. Context is everything- especially when it comes to Sufism.
There are different kinds of sufis. Some are orthodox muslims, some are burned by orthodox muslims.