Sufi saints contributed immensely in promoting peace and harmony: Shafqat Mahmood.

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Islamabad:   (Parliament Times)    National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage, Lok Virsa revamped on Wednesday a spacious three-dimensional diorama on “Sufis and Shrines” within its Pakistan National Museum of Ethnology, popularly known as the Heritage Museum, at Shakarparian.

The diorama depicts the contributions and messages of great sufi saints. Here, one can visit and see the architecture with intricate minor work done in an artistic way. There were also pigeons landmark which looked as real as one can see in the shrines.

In the portion presenting the Sindh province, there were musicians standing in performing posture singing renditions of sufi saints like Laal Shahbaz Qalandar, Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai and Sachal Sarmast. Outstanding Sindhi folk artist and performer Alan Faqir was among one of them.

Under Punjab, pictures of shrines of Hazrat Data Gunj Baksh, Shah Rukne Alam and Sheikh Bahauddin Zakaria were on display.

Malangs and faqirs, who form an integral part of shrines, were also seen paying rich tributes to the Sufi saints.

Minister for Federal Education, Professional Training, National History and Literary Heritage, Shafqat Mahmood was the chief guest of opening ceremony of Diorama. Executive Director Lok Virsa, Anwaar Ul Haq welcomed chief guest.

Shafqat Mahmood said, Sufi saints in the Sub-continent have contributed a lot towards creating love, peace and harmony among the masses.

“Now it is the need of the hour to project their message in an effective manner, so that the younger generation can get acquainted with their valuable contributions in the real sense. Sayings of the sages and the time-old customs which expressed the true genius of the people of Pakistan were the major subjects of Lok Virsa’s mandate,” he added.

He further said, students are encouraged to visit the museum and ask questions about the various aspects of Pakistan’s traditional culture.

Dali, an ornamented boat-like monument specially created to express tributes to the famous saints belonging to the capital territory known as Bari Imam by his spiritual followers during the annual Urs celebrations was also depicted in the display.

The display also throws light on the four basic pillars of Sufism which included Shareeyia (Islamic lifestyles), Irfaan-e-Haqiqat (journey towards the embodiment of God), Maarfat (journey towards the introduction to Allah) and Tareeqat (acting upon real teachings of Islam).

The popular mystic songs to pay tribute to the great Sufis by young artists and musicians were also presented.

“Quran, the book of Allah invites us to concentrate and think over the creations and manifestation of Allah to get clues for advanced thoughts and ideas. Scientists, scholars and researchers adopt this method of thinking. Muslims were the first who adopted this way of thinking and laid the foundation of modern science, mathematics, astronomy, etc.,” said one of the audience members.