‘Muslim Camp’ draws UK teens to combat extremism

More than 1,000 young Muslims attend 3-day retreat
Tahirul Qadri says saving the younger generation from radicalisation his duty
Scholar seeks to combat extremism with spirituality

COVENTRY: Like any rousing Islamic preacher, Muhammed Tahirul Qadri's voice rises to a shout and his index finger jabs as he hammers home a point.
But rather than angry calls for jihad (holy war) or a vitriolic denunciation of the West and its aggressions against Islam, Qadri's message, equally forcefully delivered, is about moderation, peace, inclusion and understanding.
Addressing a packed auditorium from a raised platform, his words beamed onto large screen behind him, more than 1,000 young followers hang on his every word, even as his lecture moves into its fourth uninterrupted hour.
"Islam is not a religion of seclusion, it is not a religion of detachment," he thunders from the dais, occasionally pausing to wipe the sweat from his brow or adjust his spectacles. "Any killer of a non-Muslim citizen, he will go to hell. Those who are committing terroristic acts from Pakistan and Afghanistan and claiming it is jihad – they do not know what jihad is. It is forbidden," he hollers, to shouts of approval from his listeners.
Qadri is a renowned scholar of Sufism, a long tradition within Islam that focuses on spirituality, emphasising peace and moderation. The author of more than 400 books on Islamic scholarship and law, Qadri travels the world delivering sermons to Sufis, while his organisation, called Minhajul Quran, has spread to 80 countries, from Greece to Fiji, since its founding in 1981.



Rumi, Sufism and The Spiritual Path



“Observe the wonders as
they occur around you.
Don't claim them. Feel
the artistry moving
through and be silent... “


“In your light I learn how to
In your beauty,how to make
You dance inside my chest,
where no one sees you. “









PZK200 Pir (Persian: (پیر) literally "old [person]") is a title for a Sufi master. They are also referred to as a Shaikh, which is Arabic for Old Man. The title is often translated into English as "saint". In Sufism Pir's role is to guide and instruct his disciples on the Sufi path. This is often done by general lessons (called Suhbas) and individual guidance. Other words that refer to a Pir include, Murshid (Arabic: مرشد‎, meaning "guide" or "teacher"), Sheikh and Sarkar (Persian/Hindi/Urdu word meaning Master, Lord).

The path of Sufism starts when a student takes an oath of allegiance with a teacher called Bai'ath or Bay'ah (Arabic word meaning Transaction). After that, the student is called a Murid (Arabic word meaning committed one).

A Pir usually has authorizations to be a teacher for one (or more) Tariqahs (paths). A Tariqah may have more than one Pir at a time. A Pir is accorded that status by his Shaikh by way of Khilafat or Khilafah (Arabic word meaning succession). Khilafat is the process in which a Shaikh identifies one of his disciples as his successor (khalifah). A Pir can have more than one khalifah.



On the image: Pir Zia Inayat-Khan.

Pir Zia is the son and successor to his father Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan. He is the present head of The Sufi Order of the West and the founder of Suluk Academy. He has studied comparative religion and oriental languages (Arabic Urdu and Persian) at London University and received his PhD from Duke University. Like his father he is a master of meditation and profound Sufi mysticism.



Open these gates,
with sweet tears.
Don't forget to sing
to the Adored
while they flow;
as the sweetest honey,
your tears become
the nectar of the ocean

It is is a simple song of Love
it touches your heart
and the hidden words
become a river
in your soul.

Let it flow,
let the memories
of past mistakes
be caressed by your own river,
a river of Love
that only asks for forgiveness.

When the Beloved is attained,
we see what is past
as a new beginning.
We see what will come
as what we have lived.

I had a guide.
He still is.
He does not know
how much inspiration
he brings
to this soul
that never forgot to flow
like a river
until an ocean
where the meaning of Love
cannot be comprehended by any word
or any thought.

It is the soul,
the biggest soul,
so distant from our conceptions,
so high and so true,
that takes our hand
to reach the stars.

In those stars
I still see this guide's eyes,
full of joy,
tears of joy,
songs of joy,
all in my hand.