Muqtada and the Sulukiyya Sect
There is news from Iraq saying that Muqtada Al-Sadr has recently issued a fatwa barring his followers from becoming members of an underground esoteric movement called the Sulukiyya or Al-Salikeen—literally, the Path Takers.
Sulukiyya began in earnest in the mid 1990s in Najaf, and very little is known about it except that it caught on among the younger generation of Shia seminarians. Its beliefs are somewhat similar to the Russian Orthodox splinter sect called the Khlysty, especially when it comes to reaching divinity through sexual stimulation. One famous alleged member of the Khlysty was the monk Rasputin. According to a knowledgeable source, young Saliks (as individuals are called) would “share” their wives and even imbibe alcohol. Much of this seems to have started in the sprawling cemetery of Najaf’s Wadi Al-Salam. Furthermore, there is a hierarchy to enlightenment, very much like the Sufi orders.
Sulukiyya is very different from the other “underground” form of Shia mysticism called ‘irfan, of which Khomeini was allegedly a disciple.
However, this same source was adamant in claiming that Muqtada’s father, Muhammad Muhammad Sadiq Al-Sadr, was a minor Salik himself, and so was Muqtada. Apparently, Muqtada was led unto the path by his former aide, Qais Al-Khaza’ali.
Toga! Toga! Toga!
Another top Salik in the Sadrist movement is Aws Al-Khafaji, Muqtada’s representative in Nassiriya. It was reported that Muqtada issued the ban on the Sulukiyya after an inquiry was made by a delegation from Nassiriya as to its legality within Shi’ism.
Is Muqtada finally putting his orgy days behind him?