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Da´wat-e Islami – a transnational movement for spiritual renewal

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Presentation on theme: "Da´wat-e Islami – a transnational movement for spiritual renewal"— Presentation transcript:

1 Da´wat-e Islami – a transnational movement for spiritual renewal
Presentation for Werkstatt Nahost, Graduate School of Politics, Westfälische-Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Kleinwalsertal, Sept © Thomas K. Gugler, 13. Sept. 2008

2 The transnational Islamic Missionary Movement Dawat-e Islami was founded 1981 in Karachi, Pakistan. The headquarters is called Faizan-e Madina.

3 Its leader (amir) is Maulana Muhammad Ilyas Qadri ´Attar (b. 1950)
Its leader (amir) is Maulana Muhammad Ilyas Qadri ´Attar (b. 1950). His most important publication is the Faizan-e Sunnat (Urdu: blessings of the lifestyle of the Prophet). The publishing house of Dawat-e Islami is called Maktaba-tul-Madina. It distributes over 200 publications by „Amir-e Ahl-e Sunnat“.

4 Attars´ Faizan-e Sunnat (1992) is the Barelwi response to Faza´il-e A´mal (1985), formerly Tablighi Nishab (1955) by Zakariya Khandalawi and inspired the Barelwi books Faizan-e Shari´at [Sunni Da´wat-e Islami ka maqbul-e ´ilm-e Tablighi Nishab] (1999) by Ibrahim Ashi and Barakat-e Shari´at by Shakir ´Ali Nuri (2005). The Islamic project is the Sunnaization, the reshaping and reconstruction of the daily routine and individual markers of identity based on the example of the Prophet and the Salaf. This apolitical Sunnaization is the individualization of political re-Islamization, focusing the private sphere instead of the state and argueing with ahadith rather than Qur´an.

5 Nonpolitical Neo-fundamentalisms emerge when political Re-Islamizations failed. One of the founding figures of Dawat-e Islami is Shah Ahmad Nurani ( ), founder of the JUP (Jam´iyat-e ´Ulama´-ye Pakistan), the political party associated with Barelwi ideas. He gave the slogan „Tahrik Nizam-e Mustafa“ (Movement for the establishment for Muhammad´s law) for the election campaign Protests against the election results resulted in martial law. Ilyas Attar was the then Punjab president of JUP´s youth wing Anjuman Tulaba-ye Islam. The Islamization and establishment of shari´ah benches under Zia ul-Haq ( ) in the name of Nizam-e Mustafa favoured Deobandis and discriminated Barelwis. Tablighis were now allowed to freely operate within the army. Zia ul-Haq was the first politician and the first army chief to visit the annual ijtema´ of Tablighi Jamaat in Raiwind. Shah Ahmad Nurani joined the PPP in its resistance to the military government. Nizam-e Mustafa – Order of the Prophet

6 The central activities of Dawat-e Islami resemble the missionary efforts also made by followers of Tablighi Jama´at. Khuruj-fi-sabil-Allah is called Madani qafila (caravan of Madinah) and every follower is requested to register for a 3–day missionary journey once a month, a 30-day tour once a year, and a 12-month tour once in a lifetime. (Here: Multan, Pakistan)

7 Muslims are invited to register for voluntary missionary tours (madani qafila) at the Madani Qafilah Maktab (Here: Faizan-e Madinah in Bradford, UK) to learn the Sunnas and foster the love for the Prophet. Invitation to register is given for example after the weekly ijtema´, congregation, on Thursday nights.

8 (Here: ijtema´ in Bengaluru, India).
The weekly congregation, ijtema´, takes usually part on Thursday nights. The program includes reciting na´t (poetry praising the Prophet), dars (a lecture read from a book by Ilyas ´Attar), bayan (lecture held by an Islamic scholar), a loud and collective zikr-session, and du´a´ (invocations). (Here: ijtema´ in Bengaluru, India).

9 As Tablighi Jama´at, Da´wat-e Islami celebrates huge annual ijtema´s
As Tablighi Jama´at, Da´wat-e Islami celebrates huge annual ijtema´s. In India a former part of Da´wat-e Islami split off to form the international movement Sunni Da´wat-e Islami, which organizes the annual Sunni ijtema´ in Mumbai.

10 The annual ijtema´s of these three movements last three days
The annual ijtema´s of these three movements last three days. The program is mostly made up of speeches, which are given till late in the night. Here the last night of the Sunni ijtema´ in Mumbai, attracting around 250,000 Muslim men.

11 The main annual ijtema´ of Da´wat-e Islami is held in Multan
The main annual ijtema´ of Da´wat-e Islami is held in Multan. In 2006 around 1,500,000 Muslim men congregated for this Islamic mega-event. Among the famous participants were two cricket players of the Pakistani National Team, Faisal Iqbal and Imran Farhat.

12 As New Religious Movements stress politics of visibility, followers can easily be recognised by symbols of piety (e.g. beards, miswak) and a uniform dresscode: sisters wear the Madani burqa and brothers a white shalwar-qamiz, a green turban (imama), a brown Madani cadar and a green beard-comb. These Symbols of the Super-Muslim shall mark the da´i as ideal Muslim and as role-model for the ordinary Muslim. (Here: Neighborhood of Dawat-e Islami in Karachi).

13 The movement was founded to oppose growing impact of Tablighi Jama´at, the 1927 founded Missionary Movement associated with the purist seminary in Deoband (f. 1867). As Barelwi movement (Ahl-e Sunnat wa´l Jama´at) Da´wat-e Islami organizes huge ´id-e Milad-an-Nabi festivals. Here the preparation for the celebration in Ahmedabad, India.

14 Another distinct Barelwi-activity is the organization of annual ´urs-festivals to commemorate Imam Ahmad Riza Khan Barelwi ( ). The all night program includes speeches in praise of Ahmad Riza Khan and na´t. (Here: Ahmedabad, 2008).

15 For Sufis the love for the Prophet Muhammad and the ideal environment of Madinah is central. This love is expressed in poetry praising Muhammad Mustafa. This na´t is a central part in the congregations of Da´wat-e Islami. Here: a da´i doing na´t in sign-language for the deaf brothers at the annual ijtema´ in Multan (this sign stands for Madinah).

16 Followers are requested to engage every evening in a ritual called Fiqr-e Madina, i.e. the visualization of the Day of Judgement and honest repentance of sins. Crying for the Prophet to save one from of hell-tortures, the follower shall swear the slogan of Dawat-e Islami: mujhe apni aur zari dunya ke logon ki islah ki koshish karni hai (I have to rectify myself and all the people of the world).

17 Dawat-e Islami has an edge over Tablighi Jamaat as it runs its own chain of madrassahs. The Madrassa-tul-Madina chain runs over a thousand madrassahs in Pakistan. Here: Madrassa-tul-Madina in Mumbai, India.

18 Transnational Sufism and Spirituality
Dawat-e Islami is estimated to have around ten million followers in about 60 countries. The movement is widely known in Pakistan, the Gulf states and South Africa. In Europe it runs five marakaz in Greece, three in Spain, and three in the UK. The Indian off-spring Sunni Dawat-e Islami runs two centres in Preston (here: Noor Masjid gave name to a street) and Blackburn, UK.

19 Since 2000 Da´wat-e Islami runs own centres (marakaz) in Europe
Since 2000 Da´wat-e Islami runs own centres (marakaz) in Europe. The European headquarters is since 2006 the Faizan-e Madina in Accrington, UK, based in the building of a former church.

20 The Faizan-e Madina is a markaz, meaning mosque and madrassah
The Faizan-e Madina is a markaz, meaning mosque and madrassah. As Da´wat-e Islami attracts a lot of Youngsters, their madrassah-chain „Madrassah-tul-Madina“ focuses on children, in the UK mainly 2nd generation migrants. Here: Accrington.

21 The Faizan-e Madinah in Bradford was the first Faizan-e Madinah in Europe. Madani work began in the buildings of the World Islamic Mission in Bradford, which was established 1972 by Arshad ul-Qadri ( ) and Shah Ahmed Nurani.

22 Faizan-e Madinah in Birmingham is called Maktaba-tul-Madina as the book shop faces the street.

23 The ijtema´ in Birmingham attracts mostly Youngsters
The ijtema´ in Birmingham attracts mostly Youngsters. Some of them sleep in the mosque over night.

24 OPEN The Faizan-e Madina in Barcelona opened on the occasion of ´id-e Milad-an-Nabi in April 2007 as the first markaz of Dawat-e Islami in continental Europe.

25 The administrative head-office is the Faizan-e Madinah in Accrington, not the Faizan-e Madinah in Karachi, which means that book have to be ordered in GBP and not in PKR.

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