Prolegomena to a History of Sufism in Australia
Tracing the history of Sufism in Australia is a challenging task. The reasons for this are varied and include, but not limited to, the wide dispersal of source materials, the primarily oral transmission of Sufism, and diversity of the manifestation of Sufism. Detailing a history of Sufism in Australia is not possible in a short article. Rather than attempting to do so, this paper will emphasise that it is a neglected area that deserves significant scholarly attention. This paper will show that Australia has a rich and diverse heritage of Sufism. This is not without some challenges and raising these will support any study that attempts to engage Australia’s Sufi heritage, especially those that attempt to detail the earlier emergences of Sufism within Australia. Some solutions to the challenges of studying the history of Sufism in Australia will be proposed. In this light, Sufism in Australia can be seen to make an important contribution to the development of Australia generally and Australian Islam specifically.
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