Strengthen Sufism to change perception about Islam: Forum
New Delhi, Mar 19: Scholars on Friday made a strong pitch for strengthening Sufism and "changing the perception" about Islam globally by spreading the faith effectively.
Speaking at the first World Sufi Forum organised by All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board (AIUMB), speakers from various parts of the world underscored the need to tackle terrorism, which has cast negative perceptions on the Muslim community.
"We can see the effects of terrorism on Muslim community. In a recent survey, majority of Canadians expressed negative opinion about Islam. This is because what continues to happen in parts of the world.
The Forum is doing a good job and hopefully we will come up with an action plan. We can meet the challenge (of terrorism) with Sufism," Canada-based scholar Sheikh Faisal Hamid Abdul Razaq said.
Razaq pitched for renewing efforts to bring Sufism to mainstream of Muslim community to tackle terrorism and suggested involving more women in the process of spreading peace.
yed Shamimuddin Munami of India seconded Razaq and stressed on the need to fight terrorism "without funds and on the back of character and values".
AIUMB president Syed Mohammed Ashraf Kichhouchhwi said followers of Ganges-Yamuna culture should strive to "export" inherited values of Sufism to the world where terrorism is bred.
Syed Asad Ali Shah Abualai from Pakistan, said Sufism can play a big role in improving New Delhi-Islamabad ties even as he blamed "some foreign forces" for the strained relationships between the two countries over the years.
He noted that militant elements were present "not only in Islam, but all religions" and sought to condemn that.