ALIGARH : “The Ṣufi-poetry, music (mausiqi) or Sama constitute a significant element in the cultural tradition of Islamic world and over the time it became an essential sacred art form, related to the spiritual dimension of human life,” said Professor Latif Hussain Shah Kazmi (Chairman, Department of Philosophy, Aligarh Muslim University) while presenting the keynote address at an International e-Conference on “Sufi Music, Perfected Humanity and Divine Love”, organized by Darul Islam Institute (DIRI), Department of Persian and Literature, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. He spoke on the “Concept of Sama (Audition) in Sufi Tradition”.
Prof Kazmi said that no discussion on Islamic art and spirituality is considered complete without a mention of music (Sama). He pointed out that most of the Ṣufis agree that it has a divine influence and creates a sense of devotion, unity with God and love for humanity, universalism and peaceful living.
Prof Kazmi highlighted the views of great Islamic saints and Sufis including Ikhwan al-Safa, Al-Kindi, Al-Frabi, Ibn-e-Sina, Ibn-e-Zailah, Razi, Ibn-e-Khaldun, Al-Ghazali, Tusi, Rumi and Ali Hujwiri and with special reference to Al-Ghazali and Rumi, he said that ‘listening to devotional music’ makes a person’s heart elated, spiritually oriented and penetrative towards divinity. He said music is beneficial for ailing people and a powerful medium for interpersonal contact.
Quoting Ali Hujwiri, Prof Kazmi said, “Anyone who says that he finds no pleasure in sounds and melodies and music is either a hypocrite or he is not in his right senses and is outside of the category of men and beasts.”
“Sama needs to be revisited and re-appropriated to promote values of love, tolerance, peace, goodwill and pluralism in a world shaken up by hostilities among selfish material men’, he argued.