Saturday, August 11, 2007

The Use of the Term "Traditional Islam"

It is a reality of our times that truth is seen as falsehood and falsehood is marketed as truth. One example is this is the use of the expression "traditional Islam" or "traditional Muslim." Post 9/11 this phenomenon has increased dramatically. The ones I seem promoting this phrase are the Sufis. It is strange that those who are the most opposed to traditonal Islam are promoting this expression. The first time I saw "traditional Islam" or "traditional Muslims" used was by (milk)Shake Kabbani back in the late 90s. Now it seems that many of the Sufis groups in the US have following him in this. Post-9/11 many from the media have been used these terms. It is not suprising since much of what the media deems as "good" Islam is Sufi islam.

Sufis have created and projected "traditonal Islam" (read Sufi islam) as the true Islam. This was done as a reactionary movement against Salafiyya. Salafiyya claims (accurately so) that they are upon the way of the As-Salaf As-Salih (pious ancestors of Islam) hence, they are saying that they are upon they way of the ancestors of Islam. Therefore, they are claiming, though they have not used the phrase, to be upon traditional Islam. Sufis claim that there way is really the original way just before there had developed a Sufi tradion withinside Islam. Stangely enough Sufism, as it is known today does not go back all the way to the As-Salaf As-Salah. The current trend of "tradional Islam" and "tradional Muslim" projected backwards to a past that cannot go back all the way to the beginning of Al-Islam.

Therefore, the only real tradional Muslim are those who are upon the way of As-Salaf As-Salih. This is not to be confused with the modernist movement lead by Jamal-uddeen Al-Afghani and Muhammad Abduh. This movement and is far different from what is Salafiyya. I will try to explore this topic in the future inshAllah.

Khalil Al-Puerto Rikani

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