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Sacred Spaces and Transnational Networks in American Sufism

by Merin Shobhana (Queen's University, Canada) Xavier

Part of the Islam of the Global West Series

Sacred Spaces and Transnational Networks in American Sufism Synopsis

This book sheds light on the Bawa Muhaiyaddeen Fellowship (BMF), one of North America's major Sufi movements, and one of the first to establish a Sufi shrine in the region. It provides the first comprehensive overview of the BMF, offering new insight into its historical development and practices, and charting its establishment in both the United States and Sri Lanka. Through ethnographic research, Sacred Spaces and Transnational Networks in American Sufism shows that the followers of Bawa in the United States and Sri Lanka share far more similarities in the relationships they formed with spaces, Bawa, and Sufism, than differences. This challenges the accepted conceptualization of Sufism in North America as having a distinct Americanness , and prompts scholars to re-consider how Sufism is developing in the modern American landscape, as well as globally. The book focuses on the transnational spaces and ritual activities of Bawa's communities, mapping parallel shrines and pilgrimages. It examines the roles of culture, religion, and gender and their impact on ritual embodiment, drawing attention to the global range of a Sufi community through engagement with its distinct Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, and Christian followers.

Sacred Spaces and Transnational Networks in American Sufism Press Reviews

This highly recommended study would work well at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in courses focusing on Sufism, method and theory in the study of religion, new religious movements, globalized religions, comparative spirituality, religion and immigration, and charismatic spiritual leaders. * Nova Religio * A masterful, ground-breaking study. Combining textual analysis with ethnographic interviews, Xavier traces the remarkable life and enduring legacy of a charismatic, boundary-blurring spiritual teacher. The book reveals the complexity and fluidity of religious identity, sacred space, gender boundaries, and ritual piety within a global Sufi community. A beautifully written and provocative portrait of living Sufism in everyday practice. * Robert Rozehnal, Associate Professor, Department of Religion Studies, Lehigh University, USA * Xavier offers many creative insights for understanding contemporary transnational Islam and Western Sufism as part of new configurations of sacred space that transcend the binary of East and West. * Marcia Hermansen, Director of the Islamic World Studies Program and Professor of Theology, Loyola University Chicago, USA * This is an important book on an important topic. Bawa Muhaiyaddeen and his heritage are key to understanding one really important aspect of Islam in a global world. * Mark Sedgwick, Professor of Arab and Islamic Studies, Aarhus University, Denmark * This book is a fascinating and original study. The book is scholarly, simply and directly written and will be of interest to scholars of Islam, diaspora, Sufism, and transnational studies, as well as religious sociology more generally. * Pnina Werbner, Professor Emerita of Social Anthropology, Keele University, UK *

Book Information

ISBN: 9781350132436
Publication date: 19th September 2019
Author: Merin Shobhana (Queen's University, Canada) Xavier
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format: Paperback / softback
Pagination: 280 pages
Categories: Sufism & Islamic mysticism, Islamic worship, rites & ceremonies, Social & cultural anthropology, ethnography,

About Merin Shobhana (Queen's University, Canada) Xavier

Merin Shobhana Xavier is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Queen's University, Canada.

More About Merin Shobhana (Queen's University, Canada) Xavier

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