Pakistan's Sufis Preach Faith and Ecstasy- page 6 | People & Places | Smithsonian
A Sufi pilgrim dances at the shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar, in Sehwan Sharif, Pakistan, in 2006. (Aaron Huey)

Pakistan's Sufis Preach Faith and Ecstasy

The believers in Islamic mysticism embrace a personal approach to their faith and a different outlook on how to run their government

Smithsonian Magazine | Subscribe

(Continued from page 5)

"Miracles?" I asked, with a wry smile, having reverted to my normal cynicism. "What kind of miracles?"

He laughed. "What kind of miracles?" he said. "Take a look around!" Sweat sprayed from his mustache. "Can't you see how many people have come to be with Lal Shahbaz Qalandar?"

I looked over both of my shoulders at the drumming, the dhamaal and the sea of red. I stared back at Hamid and tilted my head slightly to acknowledge his point.

"Mast Qalandar!" we said.

Nicholas Schmidle is a fellow at the New America Foundation in Washington, D.C. His book, To Live or To Perish Forever: Two Years Inside Pakistan, will be published May 2009 by Henry Holt.
Aaron Huey is based in Seattle. He has been photographing Sufi life in Pakistan since 2006.

Tags

Comment on this Story

comments powered by Disqus