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The Popularisation of Sufism in Ayyubid and Mamluk Egypt, 1173-1325$
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Nathan Hofer

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780748694211

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748694211.001.0001

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The Sufis of the Khānqāh

The Sufis of the Khānqāh

(p.61) 2 The Sufis of the Khānqāh
The Popularisation of Sufism in Ayyubid and Mamluk Egypt, 1173-1325

Nathan Hofer

Edinburgh University Press

In the previous chapter I argued that the Ayyubid and early Mamluk sultans’ interests in sponsoring Sufism at the Saʿīd al-Su ʿadāʾ were primarily two-fold: to support juridical Sufis in order to legitimise their own authority, and to accrue blessing and merit for themselves and their families. While the interests of the Sufis who lived at the khānqāh were certainly not synonymous with those of the military elites who sponsored them, they were nevertheless complementary. Indeed, it would be hard to imagine the sultans supporting and subsidising Sufis who did not in some way promote the interests of the state. Conversely, it would be highly unlikely that Sufis would agree to participate in the ideological programme of the khānqāh if doing so did not further their own goals or align with their conception of Sufi authority and duty.

Keywords:   Chief Sufi, Rank-and-file Sufis, Sufis, khānqāh

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