Some Aspects of Sufism as Understood and Practised Among the Malays
Syed Muhammad Naquib al-Attas
First published in 1963
While most of the examples in this research are based upon experiences and studies concentrated mainly, though not entirely, in the State of Johore, the findings are applicable to the Malays of Malaya (and Singapore) in general.
The work is divided into three parts.
In the first part a brief picture is presented, in historical as well as doctrinal perspective, of the origin, spread, development and culmination of Sufism in Islam concerning the central core of the Sufi doctrines which is the doctrine of the Unity of Existence (Waḥdatu’l wujūd), based upon that of the Unity of God (tawḥīd).
The second part is based upon personal conclusions drawn from readings in Malay prose and poetical works of famous Malay mystics of the 16th and 17th centuries, as they are likely to be the best representatives of theoretical and doctrinal Sufism among the Malays.
The third part deals with the practical and ritual aspects of Sufism based upon the author's findings in existing textbooks and literature and on personal experiences of the ceremonies and practices of the Tariqahs and of their Shaykhs.
A. An Introduction to Sufism
I. The Etymology and Significance of the Term Sufi and the Origin of Sufism.
II. An Outline of the Phases of Development in Sufism.
B. Sufism as Understood Among The Malays
III. Some Prominent Malay Mystics
IV. Sufi Orders in Malaya
C. Sufism as Practised Among The Malays
V. Two Famous Orders in Malaya
VII. The Ratib Samman Ceremony
VIII. Exposure of a Counterfeit: The Taslim