Sufism and the Sudanese Crisis

Dr. Elshafie Khidir Saeid

In an interview with “Al-Jarida” newspaper, on May 6, 2017, Dr. Muhammad El Sheikh Qareeb Allah says tried to clarify the relationship between Islamic Sufism and politics. He said: “Politics has two sides: an internal and an external one.

The internal one relates to the citizens and the good management of their decent livelihoods through service institutions and economic projects, and Sufism is strongly present in this field, including in the geographical formation of Sudan as seen in Wad Madani Al-Sunni, Taybeh Sheikh Abdul Baqi, Tabet Sheikh Abdul Mahmoud, Amrahi Sheikh Al-Tayeb, Damer Al-Majzoub, Kassala Al-Sayyid Al-Hassan, Umm Dhawan Ban Al-Sheikh Wad Dabadr…etc.

Sufism offered basic services for citizens, including agricultural projects, digging wells for drinking water, the symbiotic system through the El Maseed Foundation, the Khalawis, schools, universities, hospitals, and health centers.

As for the external side, the Sufis established extensive relations with the outside world by linking them to the bond of path, knowledge, and love that unite the Sufis brothers in different countries, in a strong bond that is not affected by the fluctuations of politics.

Many foreign ambassadors in Sudan are keen to communicate with the Sufis, as they are civil society organizations that have public weight and credibility in the society, and they represent moderate Islam and are the closest groups to the people, and this matter comes within the framework of popular diplomacy that works alongside official diplomacy to strengthen the bilateral of relations and to achieve the interests of all peoples so they can enjoy living in security, harmony, stability and the exchange of benefits.”

From our side, we add that the Sufis actively participated in the December revolution, and all of us witnessed their strong presence in the General Command’s sit-in square, and how they provide their mosques and homes as shelters for the masses of revolutionaries seeking to avoid and escape the brutality and the aggressiveness of the Ingaz security forces. Generally, Sufism in Sudan is free of fanaticism, racism, and partisanship, but some of its followers may slip behind whims and greed, and link themselves with the corrupt tyrannical rulers.

Knowing the essence of Sufism & the positive and curative role it plays in the Sudanese society, and knowing that everyone respects its platform and listens in reverence, then it is natural and expected that it interacts with the manifestations of the current crisis in the country, and it is qualified, perhaps more than others, to launch initiatives to defuse the existing catastrophic situation and to save the Sudan that today is standing on the edge of the abyss.

Of course, as soon as such initiatives emerge from the dome of the Sufi shrine into the public domain, they become a direct political action, and like any other political act, it will receive either acceptance or rejection or criticism or asked to be amended, according to the political positions of the various components of the society, and without any undermining or slandering the position of the dome from which the initiative emerged.

I think the Sudanese people will react to and prosecute any initiative claims to deal with the current political issue in the country, according to the content and not the source of the initiative. In this regard, they will react positively to any initiative launched by the Sufis as long as its content is identical to the principles of the December revolution and with the aspirations of the Sudanese people, and with the slogans raised in the streets that reject the practices, policies, and characters of the defunct Ingaz regime.

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