The Sufi and the Royal Court

Book review

Zubair Qureshi

Islamabad—A recently published book ‘The War that Wasn’t’ has been reviewed and critically appreciated by a popular writer Muhammad Asim Butt. According to the reviewer, we are one of the regions very conducive for spiritual development, having a strong and extensive tradition of Sufi movements both in Hindu and Muslim fractions of the society. Due to certain social and political circumstances these Sufis played a multi dimensional role in the society in the medieval india during sultanate period, acting as spiritual guide to the common folk, on the one hand and their representatives in the political scenario on the other hand.
In his words, Asim Butt says Sufi’s role as a socio political leader is rarely discussed. It is Dr Fatima Hussain who drew our attention to this vitally important aspect of their lives which played an effective role in the socio political scenario especially during the Sultanate period in Delhi. Dr Fatima Hussein, a scholar having command over this particular topic of Sufism in the subcontinent, in her new well researched book ‘The War that Wasn’t: The Sufi and the Sultanate’, originally her thesis for doctorate, describes in detail this commonly unnoticed aspect of the lives of these reverent and holy people.
Dr Fatima Hussein teaches history at Delhi University and have published a number of articles on history, peace, conflict resolution and women’s emancipation. She has also edited a book ‘Sufism and Bhakti Movement: Contemporary Relevance’, having established herself an authority on the subject of Sufism especially in the context of social politics in the subcontinent.

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