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What is Sufism?

By Shaykh Ibrahim

Our right to grow spiritually has been under attack for centuries. “Religion” has warped and deviated from its initial purpose. The essence of Religion is contain a spiritual foundation from which to understand and appreciate life. It is abuse when you are told what to believe. It is abuse to be compelled to “have faith” in something which makes no sense to you. It is contrary to the very nature of one’s heart when choice, sense and free will are removed. It is abuse when one’s heart is ignored and discounted.

When abused by people claiming to represent religion we tend to shut off all things connected to that source of pain. The refusal to accept the spiritual, though a natural consequence of abuse, is understandable. To push away all things spiritual is reactive, but perhaps childish.

To be human is to seek the spiritual, as well as to seek love, a job, family, etc. in this short life. The source of religion is the spiritual. A river has to start somewhere. The best way of accessing the spiritual headwater is through love, joy and choice. We learn through choosing and taking responsibility for those choices.

To freely give one’s heart to seek the meaning of one’s being is a Right. You deserve the Right to find your own sprititual balance. It is a human Right to explore and choose a spiritual system that is rational, moderate and embraces the vast complexity of sciences and infinite knowledge that swells over us every moment. You have the human Right to seek the Divine and fulfill your heart’s true desire.
This is the purpose of Sufism.

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Change in the Air – Nasruddin strikes again!

Nasruddin was walking past a bakery in Marrickville in the Inner West of Sydney. George, the Greek baker, was making mouth-watering baklava, sumptuous sourdough and irresistable profiteroles. Nasruddin caught the heavenly aromas wafting out of the bakery door. The bakery smelled so good he decided to stand outside the door and just keep smelling the beautiful gift from Allah. After about half an hour of Nasruddin standing and smelling, George the baker called out to him.

‘Are you going to buy anything?’ he asked.

‘No,’ said Nasruddin. ‘I’m just smelling.’

‘You can’t just smell. Either buy something or leave.’

‘It’s a free world. I can smell if I want to.’

George started to get angry. ‘Look here,’ he said haughtily. ‘I break my back making this stuff. I don’t do it for you to hang around and smell it. You need to pay me for the privilege.’

‘I do not,’ said Nasruddin.

‘Fine, I’m calling the cops,’ shouted George. He’d had enough of this Nasruddin joker.

‘Whatever,’ said Nasruddin, continuing to sniff the air and grinning with pleasure.

It just so happened that Pete, a beat cop from Marrickville Local Area Command was walking up the street at that moment. George called out to him.

‘What’s the issue, mate?’ asked Pete.

‘This character,’ George began indignantly, ‘Is smelling my bread without paying.’

‘Smelling it?’ Pete asked.

‘Yes.’

‘Nasruddin, I warned you about ticking off the locals,’ said Pete. ‘Ok, I think we can resolve this. Nasruddin, do you have any change in your pocket?’

‘Yes,’ said Nasruddin.

‘Jingle it,’ said Pete the cop. Nasruddin did.

Pete looked sardonically at George the baker. ‘You’ve been paid.’