Pakistan’s ‘Martyrs of Love’ Under Attack | (A)theologies | Religion Dispatches

Data Gaj Baksh Dargha - Lahore, Pakistan

This article expresses many of the same feelings that I had in several cases. I had a very strong reaction to the bombing of the Data Ganj Baksh dargha in Lahore in July. I had been there a few years before and remembered the throngs of people there, the feeling of being in the presence of the saint, of visiting the memorial to Moinuddin Chishti and feeling his great presence as well. The importance of the place is, as Faruqi points to, that here the spiritual heritage that has passed down survives. Even in the midst of practices we may not approve of there are those that understand and celebrate the real spiritual underpinnings of our great deen.

Unfortunately the superficial misunderstanding of those with extremist agendas incites a kind of action that forces others to pay the price – from the article…

“The real object of their animosity, sadly enough, is love. And insofar as the great awliya’, the saints of the subcontinent, as martyrs of love (to steal Carl Ernst and Bruce Lawrence’s expression), stand in the way of this campaign to replace love of Allah with fear and paranoia, it makes perfect sense that they’ve become its latest victims. Which is especially sad because, as too many Pakistanis seem to have forgotten, love is in fact at the heart of the spiritual ethos upon which the country was founded. Per the words of the poet-philosopher Allama Iqbal, in Masjid-e-Qurtaba: ‘Love is the holy prophet, love is the word of God.'”

There is more to the article and many other points that I can understand and totally agree with. I encourage you to read and to comment where you feel appropriate.

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