PAKISTAN is the land of sufi mystics who have spread love, peace and tolerance in society. Perhaps we have the richest mystic-cultural heritage. The extremism we are facing these days has not portrayed us correctly. The current religious extremism is not an element of our society. Our roots have been built on patience and politeness. Hospitality is our symbol.
We have to solve “religious” conspiracies faced by the nation. At this time we should learn what we possess. Why are we following the culture of other regions when our culture is rich enough? We have our own values and social guidelines developed on firm grounds.
Perhaps some steps should be taken to highlight the work of sufi mystics in Pakistan. It should be highlighted as to how sufis integrated the tolerance and politeness in society. How they inculcated a broader-vision of humanity. We have the soil of souls.
Sufi mystics’ remnants are still present in every province of Pakistan. Sindh has Shah Abdul Latif, Sachal Sarmast and Syed Usman Marwandi, Balochistan has Masteen Tawalkili; Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has Rehman Baba and Amir Hamza Shinwari; Punjab has Fariduddin Ganjshakar, Bulleh Shah and Waris Shah and many more. All of them are eminent poets and great sufis of the era. They preached religious tolerance, harmony in society and courtesy in behaviours; in fact mysticism attracted people from all religions. It teaches tolerance for other religions and acceptance of others’ beliefs to live in an inter-religion society.
Media can play a pivotal role in spreading mysticism. Apparently, at least one course should be included at bachelor’s and master’s level degree in all educational disciplines.
I must applaud the Sindh University’s efforts for announcing a diploma course in sufism. Other universities in Pakistan should also introduce similar courses on the subject. This is the need of time.
NAVEED R. KHAN Karachi