Taoist Tai Chi and Sufi Dhikr

12 June 2023 | 1:00 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. | Aga Khan Museum

Presentation and Practice session of Tai Chi
Dr. Lien Chao, Tai Chi Artist Henry Ho and Ashley Poy
Performance of Henry Ho’s Tai Chi Chinese Calligraphy

Watch the video of the presentation of Henry Ho’s Tai Chi Chinese Calligraphy: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV

Sufi Dhikr
Sufism: Path of Universal Love
Dr. Reza Tabandeh, University of Toronto

Watch the video of Dr. Tabandeh’s presentation | Part I, Part II

One of the major schools within all religions is the school of mysticism who have tried to find a solution for the crisis that religious fanaticism and materialism have created for humanity in the twenty-first century. Mystical experiences has always been the most important phenomenon for the creation of art, poetry and literature, which would motivate human emotions toward spirituality for the recognition of universal divinity in all creatures or in all being. Sufis are the mystics of Islam. In this talk, there will be a short introduction of Sufism and its philosophy. It will be explained how this school, which the prominent scholar of Islamic Studies, Dr. Sayyid Hossein Nasr, called “Heart of Islam,” evolved to a school, with the fundamental philosophy of Universal Love.

The ultimate goal of a Sufi is to be annihilated in the Beloved (God), which means being in union with the Beloved in reality. There are number of Sufi practices and sessions, which Sufis believe that these sessions help them to reach the state of union.

Remembrance of God (Dhikr) is a fundamental practice of meditation by Sufis, which must be constant and there are number of different ways of practicing remembrance. The twomost important divisions of remembrance are Silent Dhikr, which is more based on meditation in mind and breathing, and the second type is loud Dhikr, which is more practiced in Sufi lodges.

Sema is another spiritual practiced by Sufis and in the west, it is known as whirling which is not the only practice of Sema. The literal meaning of Sema, is listening, which refers to listening to a rhyme of music, dhikr or poems.

Performance: Dhikr with the Canadian Sufi Cultural Centre

Videos taken at these workshops and other events presented as a part of Asian Heritage Month 2015 are available at this link.

Co-presented with
York Centre for Asian Research; York Centre for Education and Community; Canadian Studies Program, University College, University of Toronto; Department of Social Justice Education, OISE, University of Toronto; Asian Heritage Month Festival 2015; Social Services Network; Buddhist Education Foundation for Canada; Aga Khan Museum; Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre; Japan Foundation

Asian Heritage Month Festival 2015 is partially funded by the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies, York University, Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage, Citizenahip and Immigration Canada and Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council

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