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40Afghan Malang

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  • Sheikh Mehdi abd al Qadir Malang
    May 11, 2007
      When asked about the Afghan Malang Sheikh Qadir said
      "They are holy ones thought to be touched by the hand of Allah. Some
      go about naked, moving with the seasons; others dress in women's
      clothes; still others wear elaborate, often outlandish, concoctions
      of their own design. Usually Afghan, Iranian, Pakistani, or Indian
      Sufi Muslims, Malang travel from place to place, fed, honored, at
      times feared by local populations, or at least held in awe. Often,
      they spout unintelligible gibberish, words they claim to be from
      Allah or a local saint. At other times, they quote the Qur'an. Some
      Malang are immediately recognizable by their distinctive dress and
      accoutrements: a long robe, chains and bead necklaces, a wooden or
      metal bowl called Kaj Kol that they hang over their shoulder, and a
      staff called Asah. Children follow them and they will play with them.
      They see the world not as we see it but in the way of the moth
      seeking the light. Not as male or female but as the lover seeking the
      beloved. La ill la ha ill la la lights the way before them. Some say
      they left their religion, but I ask how can someone leave something
      when belief has fled from them and knowledge is there friend. At that
      point, the truth and seeker are one and yet no one understands them."
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