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In the preface to Islamic Sufism, the Sirdar presents his views on how and why Sufism can be a way for modern humanity to reconnect with its spiritual heritage. Deploring the current state of the world, he notes that it is in such times that new revivals of spiritual thought often take place, guided by great exemplars who make a significant impact on society. Focusing on Sufism, he points out that the Sufi way is open to all people and that it can be followed in any society while maintaining contact with the world, regardless of the prevailing materialism. The student’s work is done through ordinary life in human society: Be in the world, but not if it is the Sufi dictum. The Sufi encourages not only personal refinement, but the uplifting of others as part of working towards a ‘universal brother-hood’ of humanity.”
Ikbal Ali Shah fathered three children, all of whom became notable writers themselves; his son Idris Shah became particularly well known and acclaimed as a writer and teacher of Sufism in the West. Ali Shah was a passionate advocate of the modernization of Islam. He viewed this as nothing more and nothing less than a return to genuine Islam, an Islam without a priest class.
Ikbal Ali Shah later taught Sufi “classes” in England, which were the precursors to the Sufi school established by his son, Idries Shah. He was also appointed by Dr. Zakir Hussain as India’s cultural representative in all of West Asia
“Superb and very “modern” even though first published in 1933. The editor’s introduction and the chapters “Is Religion Possible With Sufism” and “The Spiritual Experiences” are absolute gems. The chapters “Conceptions of Sufism” and “Reality of Existence” are rather difficult. Overall, a superb work by the father of Idries Shah, Omar Ali-Shah, and Amina Shah”. A Customer Review