Overview of the History of Sufi Studies



This chapter summarizes the development of Sufi scholarship in European languages from the early nineteenth century till the present. It concludes that most scholarship regarding Sufism in European languages defines the Sufi interpretation of jihad as irenic (i.e. the greater or spiritual jihad). This chapter then considers contemporary Sufi scholarship in Arabic and concludes that Arabic Sufi scholarship consistently portrays Sufis as exemplifying both the greater jihad as well as the lesser (i.e. martial) jihad, with Muslim scholars writing in Arabic insisting that the spiritual jihad prepares Sufis for the martial jihad and religiously sanctioned warfare.


European Language Western Scholar Islamic World Islamic Culture Muslim Scholar 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.OaklandUSA

Personalised recommendations