What is Global Sufism? New religion or ancient wisdom?

Explore the transformative journey of Sufism from its origins in the 9th century to its modern-day incarnation as Neo-Sufism. Delve into the mystical practices that have captivated millions and discover how Sufism has expanded beyond traditional Islamic teachings to influence global culture, art, and spirituality.

What you’ll learn in this episode:

* The Origins of Sufism: Trace the roots of Sufism back to its early days in the Middle East and its foundational practices.

* The Rise of Neo-Sufism: Understand how Sufism evolved into Neo-Sufism, adapting to new cultural landscapes and incorporating contemporary values.

* Global Influence: See how Neo-Sufism has spread worldwide, influencing music, visual arts, and personal spirituality, particularly in the West.

* Cultural Impact: Explore the contributions of influential figures like Hazrat Inayat Khan and Meher Baba, who introduced Sufism to Western audiences.

* The New Religion Debate: Engage with the argument that Neo-Sufism could be considered a new religion due to its unique adaptations and practices.

* Sufism’s Role in Modern Society: Analyze how Sufism serves as a cultural filter, enhancing personal expression and spiritual growth in today’s globalized world.


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Milani, M. 2012. The Cultural Products of Global Sufism In: C. Cusack and A. Norman, eds. Handbook of New Religions and Cultural Production. Brill, pp.659–680.


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00:00 Support Angela’s Symposium

00:58 Introduction: Sufism

03:28 Sufi History

04:03 Sufism From Asceticism to Mysticism

04:57 Classical Mysticism

05:48 Sufi Fraternities

06:31 Sama’ – Trance-inducing Music and Dance

07:24 Sufism Resists Suppression

08:29 Antinomian Values in the Arts

09:06 Neo-Sufism Develops

10:08 Neosufism in a Western Context

11:17 Western New-Sufi Traditions

12:37 Hirsch’s Framework (Spiritual Commodities)

13:49 Sufism and Western Esotericism

14:36 Sufi Syncretism in New Age Spirituality

15:38 The Question of Theological Authenticity

16:43 Support Angela’s Symposium

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Published on June 30, 2024