The sufi orders show a sign of social progress and acceptance in these societies that you would feel would be impossible to gain in a culture as traditional as the ones that we are looking at. For example, in the current book “A portrait of a Moroccan,” which we are reading currently shows this acceptance.

One thing that I find important is that Lal A’isha provided a way to fill a void in this mans life that was created by his experience in society. Without having a strong father figure, male friends, or a typical Moroccan male experience, our main character was searching for acceptance within society. He found this acceptance by uniting himself with the spirit world, and become a pious sufi. I believe this shows acceptance in the society, which is not a common practice in the region.

This follows a trend of a liberal Islam that is developing in the region as well as in central asia. Many of the reformers we see in the mix are followers of Islam. Obviously, I am not talking about the NSF in Egypt, but even in Tunisia and Egypt, we see some factions within the Muslim brotherhood, while not as powerful as the more rigid and conservative parts, gaining influence with a liberal ideology of acceptance of the West and of individual freedom.


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