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Sufi Tariqah in Contemporary Muslim World / Naqshbandiayh Sheikhs and Ideas in Western Sumatra

The role of one of the most widely disseminated Islamic mystical brotherhood tariqah Naqshbandiyah in contemporary Muslim society has many facets of studying. During the process of Islamization the tariqah penetrated to the furthest corners of Islamdom in South and Southeast Asia being a social instrument, a channel of transferring of spiritual knowledge and bearer of cultural Islamic code. In Indonesia today one can find variety of features from old-fashioned Islam of surau (institutions of traditional religious learning in Western Sumatra) to post-modern doctrines of Naqshbandiyah sheikhs. The research is an attempt to depict Sumatra as a cross cultural place of preservation of ancient knowledge belonged to Persian, Hellenistic Egypt, Arabic and Indian civilizations in the form of Sufi ideas and rare spiritual practices. It introduces original sources of Sumatran Naqshbandiyah Sufi writers, in particular, the texts on traditional medicine (thibb) and astrology as a peculiar features of local Sufi tradition.