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Sufism (Arabic term: taṣawwuf) is the organizational form of the mystical dimension of both Sunni and Shia Islam. Many Muslims around the world belong to Sufism. This spiritual tradition is well known for its inclusivist approach, tolerance, and peacefulness. However, the past and present history of Sufism has witnessed numerous civil or external wars; a fact that challenges the widely accepted idea of separation between Sufism and politics and suggests that Sufism is neither purely nonpolitical and peaceful nor utterly political and militant.

Although there is some controversy about the origins of the name, the most common etymological explanation is that it derives from ṣūf, the Arabic word for coarse wool, in reference to the poor and rough dress of the first Sufis, which was ...

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