Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Oromo Worship Of Waaq (waako) Same as Somali Waaqle

The Somali And Waaqle

The Somali are definitely Kushitic. Despite numerous fictitious Quraish genealogical traditions which claim an Arab origin specifically, a Benu Hashim descent which makes them related to the Holy Prophet of Islaam, Muhammed S.A.W.

The first and oldest traditions of the Somali which claim Arab and Quraish descent can be traced to the Dir Somali clan considered the oldest and noblest Somali group which many Maxay clans of North- Central Somali groups consider the founding nation.

The Dir who entered from the West and invaded Zaila from Ethiopian region in the 700 AD imposed on the entire Somali region their culture and traditions which became know as the Xeer of Aji. Hence, even though their is evidence of at least 9 Pre-Dir Samaale Groups all Maxaay Speaking Somalis adopted the Aji Traditions which was a cultural and ways of behaving based on xeer, a strictly nomadic way of life, and egalitarian way of life. (The Invention of Somalia)

The Oldest Dir traditions base their Arabian Quraish traditions on the arrival of Prophet Mohammed's followers to Ethiopia in the First Hijra when over 80 Ashaab landed in Djibouti Eritrea ports after fleeing pagan Quraish persecution. The Ashaab included Ruqiya Binta Rasuul (R.A)Uthman and many other popular Ashaab.

The Dir claim that Dir Aji Xiil was the Son of Aqiil Ibnu Abi Muttalib who came 35 years after the first Hijra. According to this story the Muhajirs left East Africa but established business and intermarriage relations with East Africans. The Afar or the Dankalli of Ethiopia claim their royalty The Harmalis who gave birth to Afar Royals Assayo Marra are related to the Dir through Aqiil and the claim they were the sons of a leading Ashaabi who debated the Pagen Quraish at the court of King Abraaha. The King of Aussa Ali Mirreh after Meeting a Somali Dir from Dolo who traveled up North told this Dir Dignitary of the Dir Ugaas Seed, "Lafeeko lafaako"" your bone is mine as mine is yours since you are my cousine a descendent of Aqiil Abi Muttalib who is a brother of my Forefather the Harmalis and all Assayo Marra--the red men.

Despite these Arab claims the common relation between the Afar, Somali and Oromo like other East Africans is a common past and common cultures and the Arab factor is used to unite these people with their prophet S.A.W

The Somali like other kushitics worshiped Waaqle. In Somali the word waaqle is not only associated with the sky but it also means God Illahey" the one supreme creator.

Somalis use: Waaqle in proper names and place names as well as major clans have waaqle names. Also it is used in the place of Allah or God the supreme creator:

Waligaa iyo Waaqaa= Waligaa iyo Allahaa

Gar Waqso= know the justice of God the Supreme

Abdulwaaq= slave of God like Abdullah

Tagaal Waaq one who fought in cause of God

Gacal Waaq

Bide Waaq

Gudoom Waaq

mahd waaq
siwaaq rooon


Eel waaq


For the association of the sky the Somalis us Waqal daruureed, Waaq faal Astronomy or a from of Astrology. Waaqdacin Waaqlal and the North for Waaqooyi which is the direction

What Are Their Beliefs? Gujji oromo

These ethnic religionists worship a supreme being named Waqa. Wadaja feasts are organized on various occasions, and livestock is sacrificed in Waqa's honor.

Many people still believe that objects such as trees, springs, and rocks have spirits. It is also believed that spirits called jinn may take possession of people.

One basic value of the Oromo is tokuma, which is identification with the group. The religious, social, political,and economic life of the Oromo revolves around this. Cooperation is central to this system, especially in work arrangements.

In the traditional monotheistic religion ("Waaqa") of the Oromo, the name of God is given variously in English letters as "Waaqayoo", "Waaqa", "Waq", "Waqa", "Wak", "Waaq", and so on. Though they acknowledged a "superior being" called Wak.

African (Ethiopian) god who dwelled in the clouds. He was supreme and a benefactor god. He kept the heavens at a distance from the earth and ornamented it with stars. When the earth was flat, Wak asked man to build himself a coffin. Man did so and Wak shut him up in it and buried it. For seven years he made fire rain down. This is how the mountains were formed. Wak then danced upon the place where the coffin was buried and man sprang forth, alive. He was sure he had slept for a brief moment only and was shocked to find it had been so long and earth had changed so much; this is why man is awake for most of the day. Eventually man grew tired of living alone. Knowing of man's loneliness, Wak took some of his blood and after four days, the blood turning into a woman whom the man married. Man and woman had 30 children, but man was so ashamed at having had so many that he hid fifteen of them away. Wak was angry at this, and as a result, the children man hid away were turned into animals and demons.

Waka-The bengign rain god of the Oromo of Ethiopia.

WAAQA created the Heavens and the Earth, and then created the first human. Unfortunately the Earth wasn't quite finished, so he buried the man in a homemade coffin to keep him safe while he added the finishing touches with fire and brimstone.

The process took seven long years, and the man was so bored at the end of it all that WAAQA created a woman to keep him company. This certainly gave him something to do, and the result was thirty children. The man was a bit embarrassed by all this activity and tried to hide some of his kids, but WAAQA in his wisdom turned them into animals instead.

Untouched by missionary zeal, WAAQA is still a Top God today. He is supreme. He is omnipotent. He is monotheistic. He rules over all. His will is unshakeable and unbreakable. He rewards the good and punishes the bad. And he likes a great deal of attention.

In other words, WAAQA is exactly like every other monotheistic deity we know of. He is worshipped devoutly and frequently by his followers, and there is little else to tell.

Oh, except that WAAQA and his people have often been the target of missionaries and religious fundamentalists claiming:

a) that WAAQA is ALLAH and should be worshipped as such
b) that WAAQA is JEHOVAH and should be worshipped as such
c) that WAAQA really is JEHOVAH, honestly...

The Sakuye a group closely related to the Somali of NFD particularly the Gaarre Dir and adopted Boorana cultural traits like gabra

Religion: Traditionally the Sakuye worshipped one God, Wak, by putting sacrifices in special trees. Over the last century aspects of Islam has come into their culture, though just overlaid on their traditional beliefs and practices. Dabel is the center of the Ayaana, a strong Oromo Satan appeasement and worship cult. Ayaana followers believe it is necessary to appease Satan because he brings harm to them, while it not necessary to appease God, as he does not harm people.

Editor: Balaam's Ass Speaks: The following is filled with half-truths. The Galla DO believe in spirits, and they hold a certain bird to be sacred, and they will run through the forest following the bird to see which way it turns in order to make a decision. The Galla (Oromo) also have reached a degree of ecumenism with Islam that is rare anywhere in the world.
There are three main religions in Oromia: traditional Oromo religion, Islam and Christianity. Before the introduction of Christianity and Islam, the Oromo people practised their own religion. They believed in one Waaqayoo which approximates to the English word God. They never worshipped false gods or carved statues as substitutes. M. de Almeida (1628-46) had the following to say: 'the Gallas (Oromo) are neither Christians, moors nor heathens, for they have no idols to worship." The Oromo Waaqa is one and the same for all. He is the creator of everything, source of all life, omnipresent, infinite, incomprehensible, he can do and undo anything, he is pure, intolerant of injustice, crime, sin and all falsehood. Waaqayoo is often called Waaqa for short.
There are many saint-like divinities called ayyaana, each seen as manifestation of the one Waaqa or of the same divine reality. An effective relationship is often maintained between ayyaana and Oromo by Qaallu (male) and/or Qaalitti (female). A Qaallu is like a Bishop in the Christian world and an lmam in the Muslim world. He is a religious and ritual expert who has a special relationship with one of the ayyaana, which possesses him at regular intervals.
Although the office of Qaallu is hereditary, in principle it is open to anyone who can provide sufficient proof of the special direct personal contact with an ayyaana. In the Oromo society a Qaallu is regarded as the most senior person in his lineage and clan and the most respected in the society. He is considered pure and clean. He must respect traditional taboos (safuu) and ritual observances in all situations and in all his dealings and must follow the truth and avoid sin.
The Qaallu institution is one of the most important in the Oromo culture and society and is believed to have existed since mythical times. It is a very important preserver and protector of Oromo culture, more or less in the same way the Abyssinian Orthodox Church is the preserver of Abyssinian culture.
The Qaallu institution has political importance, even though the Qaallu himself does not possess political power as such and religion is distinctly separated from politics. The Qaallu village is the spiritual centre, where political debates are organized for the candidates for the Gadaa offices. Thus he plays both a spiritual and political role in the Gadaa system. For instance, during the fifth year of the Gadaa period, the Gadaa class in power honours the Qaallu by taking gifts and making their pledges of reverence. This is the Muuda or anointment ceremony. As the head of the council of electors, the Qaallu organizes and oversees the election of Gadaa leaders.
The Qaallu institution was once a repository of important ceremonial articles (collective symbols) in the Buttaa (Gadaa) ceremony, such as the bokku (sceptre), the national flag, etc. The national flag is made in the colours of the Qaallu turban (surri ruufa). The national flag had three colours - black at the top, red in the centre and white at the bottom. In the Gadaa, the three colours, black, red and white, represented those yet to enter active life, those in active life (Luba) and those who had passed through active five, respectively. The use of these symbols is prohibited by the colonial government.
The Oromo Qaallu must not be confused with the Amhara Qaallicha, who has a very different, much lower, social status. He is a vagabond who resorts to conjuring and black magic for his own benefit, (Knutsson, 1967). He is notorious for extracting remuneration by threats or other means. On the other hand, it is beneath the dignity of an Oromo Qaallu to ask his ritual clients for gifts or payment. The Abyssinian ruling class has confused the terms, thus disparaging the Qaallu socially and religiously by using the term depreciatingly.
The place of worship of Qaallu ritual house is called the Galma. Each ayyaana has its own Galma and its own special ceremonies. The Galma is usually located on a hill top, hill side or in a grove of large trees. Many of these sites are now taken up by Abyssinian Orthodox Church buildings or Mosques. Places of worship also include under trees, beside large bodies of water, by the side of big mountains, hills, stones, etc. This has been misrepresented by outsiders claiming that the Oromo worship trees, rivers, etc.
The believers visit the Galma for worship once or twice a week, usually on Thursday and Saturday nights. At this time the followers dance, sing and beat drums to perform a ritual called dalaga in order to achieve a state of ecstasy, which often culminates in possession. It is at the height of this that the possessing ayyaana speaks through the Qaallu's mouth and can answer prayers and predict the future.
Religious Oromo often made Muuda-pilgrimages to some of the great Qaallus and religious centres such as Arsi's Abbaa Muuda (father of anointment). Among the Borana Oromo Muuda pilgrimages are still common. Muuda pilgrimage is very holy and the pilgrims walk to the place of Abbaa Muuda with a stick in one hand and carrying myrrh (qumbii). All Oromo through whose village the pilgrims pass are obligedto give them hospitality. As the Mecca pilgrims are called Haj among Muslims, these Muuda pilgrims are cared Jila.
The Qaallu institution was weakened with the advent of colonialism to Oromia, which reduced contacts between various Oromo groups. The pilgrimage was prohibited. it became the policy to discourage and destroy Oromo cultural institutions and values. The Qaallu institution has suffered more during the last 14 years than it suffered during the previous 1 00 years. At this stage it faces complete eradication and Orthodox Church buildings are fast replacing Galmas. Just before the beginning of the harvest season every year, the Oromo have a prayer ceremony (thanksgiving festival) called irreessa. It once took place in river meadows where now the Abyssinian Orthodox Church takes its holy Tabot (tablets) for special yearly festivals, the 'timqat'. The lrreessa has become illegal and anybody who attempts to practise it is now likely to be imprisoned.
The Oromo believe that after death individuals exist in the form of a spirit called the 'ekeraa'. They do not believe in suffering after death as in Christianity and Islam. If one commits sin he/she is punished while still alive. The ekeraa is believed to stay near the place where the person once lived. One is obliged to pray to and to give offering by slaughtering an animal every so often to ones parents' ekeraa. The offerings take place near the family or clan cemetery, which is usually in a village.
Oromo people have been in constant contact with other religions like Islam and Christianity for almost the last 1000 years. For instance, the Islamic religion was reported to have been in eastern Shawa about 900
A.D. and Christianity even before that. However, in favour and defence of their own traditional religion, the Oromo have resisted these religions for quite a long time.
However, today the majority of the Oromo people are followers of Islam and Christianity, while the remaining few are still followers of the original Oromo religion. It is said that the Islamic religion spread in Oromia as a reaction to the Ethiopian colonization. The Oromo accepted Islam and non-Orthodox Christianity en-masse because they identified Abyssinian Orthodox Christianity with the oppressor and also to assert their identity vis-a-vis Abyssinians. The Amhara spy monk, Atseme wrote: "The Galla became Muslim for his hatred of Amhara priests." Bereket (1980) also noted, "... Oromos in Arsi province accepted Islam in large number as a demonstration of anti-Amhara sentiment and a rejection of all values associated with imperial conquerors." A somewhat similar situation in the west was the acceptance of Islam by many Afro-Americans in 1950s and 1960s, as a reaction to the racial discrimination and oppression they faced from the white community and in search of an identity different from that of the oppressor group.
There are many Oromo who are followers of Islam or Christianity and yet still practise the original Oromo religion. Bartels (1983) expressed this reality as follows: 'Whether they (Oromo) became Christians or Muslims, the Oromo's traditional modes of experiencing the divine have continued almost unaffected, in spite of the fact that several rituals and social institutions in which it was expressed, have been very diminished or apparently submerged in new ritual cloaks." Many used to visit, until very recently, the Galma and pay due respect to their clan Qaallu. This is more true in regions where Abyssinian Orthodox Christianity prevails.
Editor: Balaam's Ass Speaks: Ha, Ha, Ha!! So when Oromo Galla become Christians they still practice their pagan religion. Well, not in Arussi Galla, friend. In fact, the Galla there, who do not become Christians, are abandoning the Oromo religion because they see that the Christians are healthier and happier. Oromo religion is full of terror of devils who are believed to be able to kill babies and drown people in the lakes on the Rift Valley. So let us take this rubbish with a grain of salt please.
Oromos believe that Waaqa Tokkicha (the one God) created the world, including them. They call this supreme being Waaqa Guuracha (the Black God). Most Oromos still believe that it was this God who created heaven and earth and other living and non-living things. Waaqa also created ayaana (spiritual connection), through which he connects himself to his creatures. The Oromo story of creation starts with the element of water, since it was the only element that existed before other elements.
Oromos believed that Waaqa created the sky and earth from water. He also created dry land out of water, and bakkalcha (a star) to provide light. With the rise of bakkalcha, ayaana (spiritual connection) emerged. With this star, sunlight also appeared. The movement of this sunlight created day and night. Using the light of bakkalcha, Waaqa created all other stars, animals, plants, and other creatures that live on the land, in air, and in water. When an Oromo dies, he or she will become spirit.
Some Oromos still believe in the existence of ancestors' spirits. They attempt to contact them through ceremonies. These ancestral spirits appear to relatives in the form of flying animals.
Original Oromo religion does not believe in hell and heaven. If a person commits a sin by disturbing the balance of nature or mis-treating others, the society imposes punishment while the person is alive.
Oromo heroes and heroines are the people who have done something important for the community. Thinkers who invented the gada system, raagas (prophets), and military leaders, for example, are considered heroes and heroines. Today, those who have contributed to the Oromo national movement are considered heroes and heroines.
Oromos recognize the existence of a supreme being or Creator that they call Waaqa. They have three major religions: original Oromo religion (Waaqa), Islam, and Christianity.
The original religion sees the human, spiritual, and physical worlds as interconnected, with their existence and functions ruled by Waaqa. Through each person's ayaana (spiritual connection), Waaqa acts in the person's life. Three Oromo concepts explain the organization and connection of human, spiritual, and physical worlds: ayaana, uuma (nature), and saffu (the ethical and moral code).
Uuma includes everything created by Waaqa, including ayaana. Saffu is a moral and ethical code that Oromos use to tell bad from good and wrong from right. The Oromo religious institution, or qallu, is the center of the Oromo religion. Qallu leaders traditionally played important religious roles in Oromo society. The Ethiopian colonizers tried to ban the Oromo system of thought by eliminating Oromo cultural experts such as the raagas (Oromo prophets), the ayaantus (time reckoners), and oral historians.
Today, Islam and Christianity are the major religions in Oromo society. In some Oromo regions, Eastern Orthodox Christianity was introduced by the Ethiopian colonizers. In other areas, Oromos accepted Protestant Christianity in order to resist Orthodox Christianity. Some Oromos accepted Islam in order to resist Ethiopian control and Orthodox Christianity. Islam was imposed on other Oromos by Turkish and Egyptian colonizers. However, some Oromos have continued to practice their original religion. Both Christianity and Islam in Ethiopia have been greatly influenced by Oromo religion.
The Oromo celebrate ceremonial rites of passage known as ireecha or buuta, as well as Islamic and Christian holidays. The Oromos have also begun celebrating an Oromo national day to remember their heroines and heroes who have sacrificed their lives trying to free their people from Ethiopian rule.
Since children are seen as having great value, most Oromo families are large. The birth of a child is celebrated because each newborn child will some day become a worker. Marriage is celebrated since it is the time when boys and girls enter adulthood. Death is marked as an important event; it brings members of the community together to say goodbye.
Traditionally Oromos had five gada (grades) or parties. The names of these grades varied from place to place. In one area, these grades were dabalee (ages one to eight), rogge (ages eight to sixteen), follee (ages sixteen to twenty-four), qondaala (ages twenty-four to thirty-two), and dorri (ages thirty-two to forty). There were rites of passages when males passed from one gada to another. These rites of passages were called ireecha or buuta.
Between the ages of one and eight, Oromo male children did not participate in politics and had little responsibility. When they were between eight and sixteen years old, they were not yet allowed to take full responsibility and marry. Between ages sixteen and twenty-four, they took on the responsibilities of hard work. They learned about war tactics, politics, law and management, culture and history, and hunting big animals. When young men were between twenty-four and thirty-two years of age, they served as soldiers and prepared to take over the responsibilities of leadership, in peace and war. Men thirty-two to forty years old had important roles. They shared their knowledge with the qondaala group and carried out their leadership responsibilities.
Nowadays, those who can afford it send their children to school. These children complete their teenage years in school. Children and teenagers participate in agriculture and other activities needed for survival. Between the ages of sixteen and twenty-four, young Oromos marry and start the lifecycle of adulthood.
By Getachew Chamadaa Nadhabaasaa, Member of Gadaa Melbaa

The Origins of Waaqeffannaa

As far as the investigation of human origin is concerned, Africa is proved to be the Origin of Man. 1 It was the continent where the human being had begun to form simple and complex social organisations. 2 It was on this continent that one of the earliest ancestors of Black African Families known as the Oromoo 3 had come to recognise the existence of a Supreme Being, apart from them. They identified the Supreme Being, as a Transcendental Reality, by giving Him the name Waaqa. They attributed to Him the symbolic quality of the colour Gurraacha, literally means Black, 4 but symbolically stands for Waaqa´s tolerance, compassion, gracefulness, invisibility, purity, helpfulness, among other symbolic qualities ascribed to Him.

According to Oromo mythology, their early ancestors were inspired by Waaqa. 5 Guided by the Law, 6 Which Waaqa granted them - through the first Qaalluu Booranaa (Mana Booranaa) - they were able to institutionalise a highly elaborate egalitarian social system known as Gadaa. 7 Since then, Gadaa has been used not only as a system but as a method, as a programme, and as an ideology 8 in checking and balancing the entire lives of the Oromo nation as one family.

Hereupon was grounded the History of the organised social, ritual, political military and economic activities of the people, which cannot be perceived separately from the Gadaa System. 9 The Oromo people, who had long ago recognised Waaqa as the only Supreme Reality, the Creator of everything, could be one among the earliest peoples of the world, not only in Africa, to develop the doctrine of monotheism. 10 Thenceforth, Waaqeffannaa as a religion, as a religious thought, and as a religious practice of the Gadaa-organized Oromo people, sprung out of the Oromo concept of Waaqa. As a public affair, Waaqeffannaa is manifested by Oromummaa 11 as part of the cultural domain of the Gadaa Oromo Society.

Since the emergence of Waaqeffannaa as a public religious affair, the Oromos have been organising "Thanksgiving Ceremony" (Irreecha/Irreessa) near a body of water (lake, spring, crater, or stream) or at the Galma of the Qaalluu every year. 12 The ceremony is conducted by offering thanks and greeneries to Waaqa, Who helped them pass through the 'dark' rainy winter season 13 to the bright sunny season, which begins to shine in the month of Birraa/Fulbaana, the time crops and plants are furnishing colourful flowers. 14

In spite of problems confronting the Oromos in course of their history, interaction with other peoples, voluntary or involuntary conversion to the ´written´ religions 15 of the Muslim and Christian worlds, Waaqeffannaa continues to offer pertinent answers to its adherents.

Waaqeffannaa has made remarkable contributions in conflict resolutions, in making peace, in maintaining social harmony, in defending the Gadaa-based moral qualities of the Oromo families, in shaping the behavioural system of the Oromos (from blessing ceremonials to etiquette of socialising). and in bestowing socially meaningful names upon the newly born Oromo children. 16

Invoking Waaqa, and the Teachings of Waaqeffannaa

In the daily life of every Oromo, Waaqa is frequently invoked.. In morning and evening prayers, in seeking peace, in giving an errand of blessing and oath, in mediating conflicting parties for reconciliation, in testifying witness etc. 17

However, this does not necessarily indicate that those who invoke are all on the Avenue of Peace (Karaa Nagaa) that Waaqa brightened for the Oromo people to walk on. 18

There could be individuals who might have gone far from the Avenue of Peace and committed themselves to a tricky invocation. Waaqeffannaa teaches the invocation of Waaqa to be held at the right time, for the right reasons, at the right place. 19

Falsehood invocations are believed to be signals of calling misfortune upon one's own life, beside their blasphemous connotation. 20 Falsehood invocations are a blatant rejection to walk on the Avenue of Nagaa, a flagrant violation of the spiritual quality of the Gadaa Oromoo Society, a defection and flight from being a faithful citizen of the Gadaa-based indigenous republican form of Oromo governance.

According to Waaqeffannaa, a cheeky person of sneaky behaviour, a counterfeiter, a renegade, a socially inconsiderate, selfish and deceptive person is understood as existing against the Law of Waaqa. 21 Hence, Waaqeffannaa refrains from approving a 'certificate of integration' into the religious life of Gadaa Oromoo Families. No one can ever trust such person as a faithful citizen of the Republic of Gadaa Oromoland. Waaqeffannaa rather adheres to teaching human compassion, conformity to facts of truth, respect to the Law of Waaqa, honesty to the legitimacy of social taboos, fairness to individual and public opinions, care for strangers, and hospitality to foreigners etc. 22

Waaqeffannaa teaches its followers to abhor practices like persecution, ostracising and segregation of man by man because of differences in faith, language, ethnicity, hair texture, physical character, skin colour, height or weight. 23

The most important quality for Waaqeffannaa is the "Tone" of the man and the coherency of his tone with his activity 24 that can defend the Nagaa Oromoo Family for the development of the "We-Oromo society" together. 25

However, as it has been witnessed in the past ten decades, Oromos' fairness, openness and honesty have given ample opportunities to the ´closed´ Monophysitic 26 Amhara and Tigray people, including the Monophysitic Eritreans, who constitute the core part of the Abyssinian society, to devise the strategy of divide and rule.

Religious Terrorism and Intolerance carried out by Monophysitic Abyssinians

In order to uproot Waaqeffannaa, the leaders of the Monophysitic Abyssinian religion, who worship 44 types of ´Tabots´, have greatly helped the successive colonial regimes of Abyssinia to carry out wars and perform all sorts of military and police activities.

In addition, the greedy-espionage of European missionaries, notably the Pentecostal sects, have taken the advantage of Oromos' openness, and succeeded in diverting numerous Oromos from the path of their original faith to the imported 'Cross Worshiping' religion 27 by giving priorities to selected Oromo localities. The worst side of Pentecostalism is the creation of self-alienation, the inculcation of an illusive life on the part of its followers, so as to damage the indigenous values. 28

Helped by Oromos' generosity, hospitality, and frankness, the missionaries 29 have been able to manipulate Oromo's local psychology, scrutinise their mental faculty, and succeeded in establishing Euro-centric 'Cross Worshiping Centres' among Waaqeffataa Oromos.

They preach what they call preparedness for 'the best life after death' 30 which does not exist in the Oromos´ Waaqeffannaa creed. On this point, too, the teachings of the Euro-centrists are not different from those of the Monophysitic Tewahido 31 Ethiopianists, who also preach the 'beauty of life after death´. They teach how the very nature of man is aggressive, 32 vindictive, and deceptive, when one is born to live on earth. Hence, to be able to conquer the 'beauty of life after death', they preach means to control such tendencies through long fasting that requires abstention from nutritious food like milk, meat, chicken, egg etc.

Islam and Waaqeffannaa

Islam, too, teaches the existence of a 'wonderful life after death in paradise' 33 but it conditions it "if all peoples accept Islam as the only true religion of the world,". It teaches "holy slavery" 34 to the Arabian 35 Supreme Being called Allah. 36

The Monophysitic Coptic Abyssinians, the Evangelical European missionaries, the Muslim Arabians 37, and their followers are in the same category in rejecting Waaqeffannaa as a Human Faith.

Waaqeffannaa does not believe either in the existence of an eternal joyous life in heaven after death or a miserable life in hell. Its teachings are based on the existence of Life before death on earth. It only believes in the virtual existence of the dead person in the form of Ekeraa (Ancestor´s Holy Ghost) where the person was buried in his ancestor's cemetery. 38

According to Waaqeffannaa, a person is totally responsible for all sins he committed while on earth. 39 It attributes virtue of success, happiness, peacefulness, compassion, victory etc. as a direct consequence of man's close communion with the Law of Waaqa and his constant walk on the ever-luminous path He cleared for man to travel on.

That is why, Waaqeffannaa always advocates honesty, modesty, truth, purity and humanity as inherent qualities of the Gadaa-based Oromo Society, which can lead them to successful achievement for the endeavours they are constantly undertaking.

Waaqeffannaa teaches the abhorrence of the root causes that emit cataclysmic social disorders and defile the established social norms with which the Oromos have been living in the longest period of their history, when they stood in the light of Seera Waaqa and Safuu Oromoo.

More specifically, Waaqeffannaa teaches that

1. Waaqa endowed the Oromos with the Avenue of Peace, Karaa Nagaa, to walk on, 40

2.. Waaqa blessed for them with the Gadaa Rule of Law, as promulgated and declared by the Supreme Legislative Organ, Caffee/Gumii, 41

3. Waaqa blessed the Oromos to be men of justice and law-abiding citizens of the Republic of Gadaa Oromoland, 42

4. He blessed them to be a victorious and prosperous nation of numerous progenies, if they follow the Avenue of Peace, 43

5. Waaqa strictly warned them never to cultivate persons of dictatorial ambitions nor to allow the growth of such person among them and so on. 44

These and other messages of Waaqa are believed to have been delivered through the mouth of the first Qaalluu Booranaa, who had been anointing Oromo pilgrims from all over Gadaa Oromoland at Haroo Walaabuu before colonisation. The message has become a self-assertive declaration in rejecting and fighting any form of internally assumed dictators and the Abyssinian colonial rules and rulers.

The Oromo Concept of Evil

Waaqeffannaa preaches that there is no other power to dares challenge Waaqa's Supreme Authority. 45 This is diametrically opposed to the ´revealed´ religions of the Christian and Muslim worlds which preach too opposite to Waaqeffannaa´s fundamental religious creed.

The origin of the religion and the word Waaqeffannaa is Waaqa, the Invisible Supreme Power. Hence, there is no other power that could contend Waaqa´s infinite power, wisdom and supreme authority. Followers of ´revealed´ religions call this power satan. 46

According to their teachings, this so-called satan is full of power, has the ability to instigate man against Waaqa, Waaqa against man, man against man, to become king of the world on earth and king of paradise in heaven. 47 To the question they are often asked "who created the satan?", they reply: " God created him. However, they say, since God found him challenging His power, He restricted him to be king of eternal damnation, the hell". 48 According to the Bible and the Qur´an, satan is the cause of all conflicts, war, delinquency, deviancy, vagrancy, robbery, sadness, madness, unsuccessful achievements, injustice, social vice, etc.

Before the introduction of the colonial religions into the belief systems of the Gadaa Oromoo Society, the word satan had not existed in the vocabulary of Afaan Oromo. 49 Unfortunately, it has become one of the foreign words that existed in a corrupted form in Afaan Oromoo. The Oromos call it seexana. In Hebrew language, it is known as sa-tan. In Greek, as sa-ta-nas.

They identified it as a chief adversary of "Their God", narrating that Satan had spoken through the mouth of a serpent and succeeded in seducing Eve into disobedience to God. 50 The disobedient Eve in turn seduced her husband, Adam, to follow the same rebellious action like her. Thereon, the spirit of the satan interwoven with that of God, and the recognition of its decisive role in Judean-Christian and Muslim religious beliefs, came into existence as ´Holy Scriptures´. 51

As the case of Pheenxee Oromos clearly demonstrated to us, particularly followed by some Islamic sects, this so-called seexana is blamed and condemned to death for their weaknesses and failures, for their delinquent, deviant and sneaky misbehaviours.

In great contrast with the Waaqefataa Oromo religious doctrine of altruism, they preach egoism within the context of Pentecostalism as the only means to achieve the desired self-centred objectives etc.

In their views, everything, crime, disharmony, conflict, natural disaster, breach of oath, disobedience, illness, madness, etc. can be attributable to the work of seexana. They categorically reject any values that are indigenous and relevant to African origin. 52 According to Pheenxee Oromos, all material cultures pertaining to Oromo traditional religion are ´idols´ 53 serving the will of seexana, being hence condemned to demolition and destruction. 54

For them, Oromo ritual objects are not human beings´ creativity to help the Oromos provide a meaning of life and satisfy their needs. 55 As they are officially preaching, the objects are devil´s invention moulded and embellished to worship satanic authorities.. 56

Waaqeffannaa attributes the occurrence of sadness, madness, social vice, unhappy lives, unsuccessful achievements, dishonesty, delinquency, deviancy, conflict, war, disgracefulness etc as a consequence of man's departure from the Avenue of Peace, Karaa Nagaa irraa jallachuu, and his violation to observe and respect Seera Waaqa and Safuu Oromoo. 57

The Oromos express their resentment directly to their Creator, Waaqa. They know no other super power. They blame the misfortune and bad-omen they have encountered in their daily lives and activities as a result of their own negligence, derailed to follow the main chapters of Waaqa´s law. Then, they directly complain to their Waaqa, why He withdrew His protection away from them. They believe that, they might have committed Cubbuu (sin) that could anger the Creator and Tolerant Waaqa. Then, they begin to pray and appeal to His help for resilience. 58

Whether the Oromos confront problems or pursue happiness, it is only Waaqa Who is to be praised or to whom either displeasure or resentment is to be expressed. The Oromos have had direct relationship with their Creator, be it in time of happiness or in moments of sadness.

The Survival and Revival of Waaqeffannaa

The colonising religions of Coptic centred Monophysitic Abyssinians, the Euro-centred Evangelists, and the Mecca-centred Muslims are claiming a 'monopoly of truth' 59 over Waaqeffannaa, by labelling this indigenous African religion as pagan, animist, inferior, backward, and imbued with a 'monopoly of falsehood'. 60 They are competing with each other for the scramble of the Gadaa-based Oromo Society. 61

Such derogatory connotations have tried to molest the noble functions of Waaqeffannaa. They have become the major cause for the destruction of human lives, human heritages, peace and peace-loving peoples of African origin in which the Waaqaafannaa-led Oromo concept of Nagaa has been deliberately interpreted as a 'violent pagan faith'.

In the 2nd half of the 19th century, the Abyssinian empire builders had effectively used their Coptic Monophysitic Abyssinian religion as a weapon to colonise the Oromo people.

Emperor Haile Sellasie declared that "the church is like the sword, and the government is like an arm, therefore, the sword cannot cut by itself without the use of the arm". 62 The emperor's decree had clearly justified the nature of their religion and its role in provoking violence instead of peace.

However, resisting the Abyssinian church's sword on the right side, the government's arm on the left side, Pheenxee's and Sheikhs´ assault from the rear and front lines, Waaqeffannaa has testified to its survival to this day. Waaqeffataas are reviving the genuine Oromo Religion, despite systematic harassment by the colonial regime and despite open condemnations by the fundamentalist sections of the followers of the aforementioned religions. They are offering "Thanksgiving Ceremony", Irreecha/Irreessa, to Waaqa Who created them as one of a peace-loving people of African societies.

They are thus demonstrating to the world the continuity of their stiff resistance to the colonising religions, which are detrimental to the religious function of Nagaa Oromoo..

At the beginning of the 20th century, a certain missionary, Phillipson, visited the Oromo communities around the coast of Indian Ocean and said: "To their [Oromos] beautiful custom of hospitality, their religion teaches them to take care for strangers bound on an errand of peace". This man could not conceal the true nature of Waaqeffataa Oromos, even if he was sad that the Oromos did not accept the ´written´ colonial religion that was ravaging the peoples in Kenya at that moment. 63


To sum up, Waaqeffannaa is an indigenous religion of African origin, which is followed by millions of people. Waaqeffannaa does give holistic, convincing, and historically remarkable answers to its followers. The door of Waaqeeffannaa was open; and it is still open; it must continue to be open to those constructive ideas and various innovations that help enhance the creative capacity of the Oromo people.

Nonetheless, the various mushrooming sects of all colonial religions in Oromoland endanger the revival of Waaqeffannaa, the Oromo prayers, the preservation of sacred places, and the institutions. These colonial religions run for the monopolisation of 'truth', based on their texts, and because of this they rather continue nurturing social conflicts, instead of restoring social harmonies among the Oromos. 64

The various missionaries, though they admire and preach the monopoly of their own colonial faiths, need to develop moral judgements and human compassion by respecting and deeply exploring the values of the indigenous religions, not merely Waaqeffannaa, for the religions of the indigenous peoples of African origin can better satisfy their needs. 65

Therefore, it would be a wise judgement on the part of Oromo Qeeses (priests), who have recently begun to be addressed by the Gadaa title 'Luba', their followers and disciples in particular, and the Oromo Sheikhs, if they start taking seriously into account the absolutely prominent and greatly beneficial role Waaqeffannaa has been playing in protecting Oromummaa throughout the ages. Such a wise act would help them avoid any further jumping into various forms of hasty generalisation. 66


Posted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 5:36 am Post subject: HOW ISLAM CAME TO SOMALIA AND ROLE DIR PLAYED

quote="Muddane Warsame"]E-mail Uu ii Soo Diray nin Direed (Surre)

qoraalada iga yaabshay oo uu dhalintaan ka qoreen islamka iyo doorka suuban ay Dir ka dheeshay fiditaanka Dinteena Suuban iyo fiqiyaasha Suure/

1)Qorahan waxaa uu sheegayaa in nin Direed oo looyaqaanya Sh. Yusuf Al Kownin ama ka weyne uu alifay qurmada Quraanka xafihiisa sida-- Alif la kor dhabee, La hosdhabe-- iyo higaada ku saleysan af keena hooyo ee Somaliga ah. Waxaa uu sheegayaa in xitaa magacayada Surre ee Fiqi (uu ka yimid Qareen diinta Islamka iyo Shareecada) madaama uu odeyga Surre ahaa wadad ku fidiyay Diinta Islamka oo uu wiilashiisa oo Fiqiyo ah u kala diray daafaha Somalia


According to our noble Dir brothers of Somalia. The eldest son and most ancient clan of the Somalis. 1) Islam came to Somalia in the first Hijra when the followers of the prophet fled to East Africa and came to Ethiopia as refugees. 2) So Islaam come to Somalia before Mecca was recaptured from the pagan Qurishi. The eldest Son of the Dir Ali madaxweyn who lived at this time around 643 Ad accepted the faith and sent a delegation to the Khilifa in 732-67 Ad. Shortly after that period even the illustrious Sheikh Ahmed (Mohamed Xiniftire studied in Yamen and returned to Somalia via the Dahlak Island where he fathered the Maxamed Xiniftire branch of the Dir which includes The Isaaq Axmed(Maxamed), Biyomaal maxamed ,Gadsan clans.

(Posted by guest: W.A)
posted at Tue Feb 08 03:59:07 EST 2005 wax is weydiin
abdi taariikhda aad noo sheegtay waa taariikh xiiso leh ee tixraac maleedahay?

(Posted by guest: abraac)

Agoon History of Islam in Somalia from the Time of Mohamed (Saws)

Shortly after the Hijra (670's) the Quraish or prophet's tribe started persucuting muslims and hundreds of the prophets followers fled across the Indian Ocean to present day Zaila and through Erithrea.

It was in this period that the Somalis and their cousines the Afar-Oromo-Harararis and other nations of the horn of Africa converted to Islam.

According to most Historians the people of Zaila who were of Dir origin and Issas-Gadabursi-Isaaq origins, Islam became well established by 800 A.D. By the 1300 century the whole horn of Africa up to Kenya and Zanziber we have Muslim cities flourishing and Muslim sulltanes like Ifat and Adal all over Somali.

As a matter of fact, it was in 1300's that the ancient Somali Dir saint Sheikh Yusuf Alkownin (Aw Barkadle) innvented the Alif-La-Kordhabee or Somali way of reading and learning to read the Quran scriptures. And around this time, another Sheikh by the name of Sheikh Hussein Al Bale of the Bale Oromo Arsi region left Northren Somali and Islam was well established in Southren Ethiopia all the way to northren Ethiopia.

So the Islam of Somalia dates back to the time of the Hijra and many Somalis became muslims even before the Prophet Islamized the Arabs and Islam succeded in Arabia.

Later in he 1400 AD, the Qadiriya Sufi order of Sheikh Cabdul Qadir Al-Jilani spread to Somalia and Ethiopia revitalizing the ancient faith and further incorporating more Kushitics. The earliest leaders of Qadiriya Order were mostly from the saintly Dir sub-clan of Surre. The earliest Surre rulers were called Fiqis (Islamic Scholars of Diin and Lawyers of Sharia). The Oldest of the Surre clan the Qubeys and his younger brother, the Abdalles fathered some of the best Islamic Scholars in the 1600 century and they spread the Islamic faith all over the Somali coast. Imam Surre sent his numerous sons whom he named Fiqis to central Somalia, South, and North.

By 1456 AD, he Muslim Kings of Ifat, led by a Somali worrior, Imam by the name Imam Axmed Gurey (Left-Handed) was fighting Ethiopian Christian Habasha kings who tried to conquer Somalilands. W.A.

="Muddane Warsame"]E-mail Uu ii Soo Diray nin Direed (Surre)

Muddane Warsame

Beelah Direed ee konfurta Somalia (Mudug/Galgaduud/Sh.Hoose) dagan waxa
ay sheegan in odeyga Direed uu dhalay Afar wiil oo kala ah:

Madaxeyne Direed oo curad ah, Mahe Direed oo ku xigeen ah, iyo labada
kale oo kala ah Madoobe Direed iyo Mandaluug Direed oo ugu yar da'a
ahaan marka la eego.

Taarikhiyan waxa ay rumeysanyihiin Dirka Galbeedka iyo Konfurta dagan
dhoor qodob oo ku saabsan tariikhda hore:

1)Dadka Direed in ay ka yimaadeen dhankan Galbeedka bilawgii, kunsano
ka hor.

2)Magaca Dir in uu macnahiisu yahay "Fir" ama Ab. Oo lagu macneyn karo
geesi ama Dhiire.

3)Konfurta Dirta dagan wexey rumeysan yihiin in ay Dirka xukumi jireen
Saladiin loo yaqiin ROOBLE oo ahaa ilaaliyaasha Xeerka iyo caadada

Rooble- Xeerbeegti,Qareemo, amanduuleyaal,Roobdoonayal,iyo mareynta
reerka ayaa lagu aqoon jiray.Guud ahaana waxa ay ilaalin jireen xeerka
oo Dirku rumeysnaa in ay ka dhaxleen Dir Aji abkoodi hore.

Madaxdan oo loo aqoon jiray Roobleyaash dadku wey ixtiraami jireen ila heer xitaa
isha laguma godi jirin, oo xitaa "ILKULULe" ayaa loo aqoon jiray.

4)Waxa kaloo ay rumeysan yihiin in Zeylac magalada la yiraahdo ay Dir
badan soo jidatay qarnigii (700 AD) halkaas oo ay ka soo dageen Asxaab
badan oo Rasuulka(Caleyhi salatu wa salaam) u soo diray magaalada
Zailac Hijradii koowad. Oo dadka Direed iyo Canfarta (Oday Caliga) ay
waagii danbe ka wada asaseen labo boqortooyo oo la kala dhihi jiray
CIFAT iyo CAdal.

5)Dirta koonfurta iyo Galbeedka dagan waxa ay rumeeysan yihiin oo kale
in 1400 ay dhaceen dagaalo far badan oo xabashida iyo muslimiinta is
dagaaleen. Ilaa ay xabashida oo adeegsaneysa (Portugees)burtaqiis ay
cagta mariyeen boqortooyoyinkii Musliminta oo kuwa Direed ee Cifat iyo
Awda ka mid ahayeen

6)Dhamaan waxa ay rumeysan yihiin Dirka in ay door weyn ka ciyaareen
fidinta diinta Somalia iyo Ethiopia dhexdooda.

Sheekhyada waaweyn ee geeska Afrika sida Sheikh Xuseen Bali, Aw
Barkadle, Awbarre iyo qaar kale ay Cadal iyo Cifad ka soo jeedan
4)Beelaha Biyomaal iyo Suure iyo Guure waxa ay sheegan in 1600-1750 ay
u soo guureen duleedka dalka (Gobalada dhexe iyo labada wabi dhexdooda)
mudo yar ka dib dagaladii Axamed Gurey iyo Amxaarada.


If you want to know where they are located and how many are divided MADALUUG Clan are: 1) Samaroon which is (Samaroon saciid daa’uud Madaluug) or some people know Godabiirsi which is a nickname and not the really name. The really name is Samaroon. Their locations are northern Somalia beginning above Arabsiya which near to Hargeysa till you reach Djabuti republic, and also other sides till you reach Hawaas which is in Ethoipia an above DIRI DHAWA in between this area. 2) Reer Isaaq (Isaaq Madaluug) their location is starting from Dhagaxbuur, Qabridahare to Godey in between this area. Their is also other area you can find it like area around Shilaabe, Jarati and some part of southern Somalia like kismayo as I knew so far. 3) Reer Axmed (axmed Madaluug) Their location southern Ethiopia like the area Shilaabe, Jarati, also you can find southern Somalia, like area around Jowhar, also Kismayo to Afmadow, also around Baardheere. You can also find north Kenya like BANGAL which is not so far the border between Kenya and Somalia. 4) Reer Xasan (Xasan Madaluug) their location is starting Godey, Qalaafe till you reach Hiraan Region. You can find also in between Ethiopia and Kenya particularly Nageyle Region. 5) JIRE Madaluug they are located in between Jigjiga till you reach Faafan area which is in Ethiopia. 6) Irablle Madaluug you can find in central Africa like Rwanda and Burindi, these sub clan they immigrated the central Africa when Portugal brought army force to Ethiopia how to defeat the army of Imam Ahmed Ibrahim Gurey who was the leader of MADALUUG Clan at that time. His army when is defeated and their family they moved to ward to central Africa. changed there religion and become Christian in nowadays as we heard it. 7) Geelwaaqlle Madaluug you can find area between southern Ethiopia and northern Kenya. 8) Masalalay Madaluug you can find the triangle between three east African nations Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia. 9) Xuseen (Hussein) Madaluug I am not exactly sure where they living particularly but I heard they living beside Xasan (Hasan) Madaluug. If you want know what it mean the word (Reer) =

History Of Hobio City Mentioning Suure Dir Imams Qadis who ruled

The Port City of Hobyo and The Dir Imaams
Qoraalkaan wax uu sheegayaa in Boqortoyadii Ajuuran ay Dir/ Abgaal/ Sheekal Imaamo ahayeen History of Hobyo The Port City of Hobyo In the present somali language Hobyo may mean: Ho = have and Biyo = water(Hobiyo = Have a water). Hobyo in this context indicates that the town had a wells to provide water and to offer to travelers. Probably the word may have derived from old Somali and may have evolved it this form. In the Periplus of the Eritrean Sea (an old Greek Merchant's dairy book) the name opone appears to correspond to old Hobyo. Hobyo is an ancient harbor, like many other Somali ports on the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean, may had been frequented by Phoenicians, Egyptians, Persians,Yemanis, Greeks and Roman sailors. The dairy chronicled to AD50 contains a map of all the ports and their importance. It is shown that Opone(Hobyo) was a centre of the trade in cinnamon and spices. This trade seems to be evidence that the people were sea farers who traveled to the Far East, as far as the present Indonesia amd Malaysia. History of Hobyo It is not known why people settled at Hobyo shores but an obvious explanation could be trade. Apart from ivory, animal skins and incense, the rise of the coastal trading post was due to the commercial opportunities the port generated by the dhows trade. Oral traditions recall that Hobyo was the departure port of hundreds of pilgrims who wanted to visit Mecca and do the Islamic duties and worship. But the most plausible explanation for the size of the town was the commercial possibilities generated by the Ajuuraan Sultunate at Qalaafo, now in Ethiopia. Agricultural products grown in what is known locally as 'Shabeele, a region along both banks of the Shabeelle River, between Qalaafo and Buur Unkur ' was exported from this seaport. Hobyo was a prosperous town and thrived well during the Ajuuraan dynasty that ruled some parts of Somalia between 1400s and 1750s. The last Ajuuraan dynasty crumbled during the colonial period. Ancient migration routes joined Shabeelle to Hobyo (9:5). Archaeological evidence suggests that Hobyo may have been an important trading centre in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, participating in East Africa's trade with the Middle East and Asia. Its status, however, changed many times in the past. Hobyo had sea links with the Banaadir coast towns such as Mogadishu, Marka and Baraawe that were far more important during the 18th and 19th centuries (1:30). Hobyo was beyond the rule of the Omani rulers in Zanzibar who from 1698 to 1840 loosely ruled the Banadir coast. The Omani Sultans weakened gradually to give way to the Italian colonial rule. The ocean trade brought the town wealth, luxury and on occasions power. The coast could not produce enough for most everyday needs, and therefore, the hinterland supplemented the requirements. People grew mainly sorghum as the stable food, and beans and raised animals like camels, cattle, goats and sheep. Livestock, hides and skin, aromatic woods and raisins were exported, while rice, other foodstuff and clothes were imported. The luxury goods consisted predominantly of textiles, precious metals and pearls. This made the town vibrant(9: 9-10). Today it seems unlikely that ancient Hobyo communities were maritime people and the open-sea beyond the reefs were as much of their environment as were the coastlands. There were always movements of traders and settlers up and down the coast. People traveled with the northeast monsoons to Banaadir and the East African coast, and using the southwest monsoons traveled back to Hobyo, or to the Arabian Peninsula or India. The northeast monsoons bring many kinds of consumer goods from Arabia and India, while the southwest monsoon takes local products from the Swahili coast: spice, grain, ivory, hides and sometimes slaves. The size of the trade the Banaadir coast and Hobyo did was not comparable to the volume of trade from East Africa. The actual dates of the monsoon vary from year to year by several weeks, so that there is always the risk of ships becoming stranded at one end of the journey or the other. If the winds are seized at the right times, then overseas sailing is quick and easy. The Ajuuraan rulers collected tribute in the form of sorghum (durra) from cultivators who farmed on the coastal plains in Harardheere and El-Dheer, and demanded cattle, camels, goats or sheep from the nomads of the region. Also agricultural products from the other regions of the Ajuuraan Confederate was consumed or exported from Hobyo. The port of Hobyo was an income-generating source where the state received enormous revenue(4: 96-112) Hobyo's Ajuuraan rulers were in alliance with the rulers of Mogadishu Sultanate who were of Arab, Persian or Ajuuraan origin. Trade between Hobyo and the Banaadir coast flourished for some time. However, in around 1650s the Sultanate of Hobyo started to decline. Traditions mention that Hobyo was the starting point of the Hawiye rebellion against the Ajuuran rule, and contributed to the ultimate defeat. Many of the deep stone-walled wells, abandoned fortifications and other ruins are attributed to local tradition to Ajuuraan construction (4:97).Since that, for nearly two centuries the town prospered and gained fame in supplying fresh water to the sailing dhows. Probably, a new loose sultanate of the Hiraab took the reign, led by the Imaam. The Hiraab is a confederate of Hawiye clans and ruled with a clear division of power: The Imaams were from the Abgaal, the Faqhis and Qadhis were from the Sheeqaal or the Dir (although not considered from the Hiraab) and the army leaders or advisors were from the Habar Gidir or Duduble. But soon the arrangement overstretched in terms of area under control and dissolved. In the early 18th century, the Imaam was already in Mogadishu, and settled there. In 1878 Hobyo's glory attracted a young rebellious and ambitious man named Ali Yusuf. He was from the Majeerteen clan and approached peacefully to local headmen and elders of the local people. The man and his army built a fort and secretly smuggled in guns. After a short time, Ali Yusuf attacked the local tribesmen and pronounced the Sultanate of the Majeerteen in Hobyo.The sultanate was captured and pensioned off to Mogadishu in 1925 (4: 71). Since the fall of the Sultanate to the Italian colonial power, the town lost its historical roles, and started gradual declination. The Italians and the Somali governments after independence all marginalized the town, forgot its ancient history and neglected it. Caught in a declining and sinking town, the people had to emigrate to elsewhere in search for jobs and life. The centralized administration, and concentration of wealth and opportunities in the capital city made the people to flow out more rapidly.

sufism in Somalia

Sufism in Somaliland: a Study in Tribal Islam - Although Somaliland has attracted the attention of a distinguished body of Italian scholars it has not yet been subjected to a specifically social anthropological study such as the present writer hopes to make. Excellent studies notably by Puccioni (1919-1937), Cerulli (1918-1943), and Colucci (1924,1943) have elucidated the sociology of the Somali and created a sound corpus of knowledge for future investigations. Colucci's Principi di diritto consuetudinario della Somalia Meridionale (1924) provides a penetrating analysis delineating with great clarity the general framework of Somali social organization and the political structure of the Sab tribes of Somalia in terms of lineage organization. Cerulli's studies of tribal custom and social organization are also of great value; his ' Note sul movimento musulmano nella Somalia ', published over 30 years ago, is at present the foundation of all studies of Islam amongst the Somali. The present paper attempts to set this and other material on Somali religion in the context of the sociological investigation of the literature of the Somali which I have made elsewhere (Lewis, 1966), and in which I have been guided by Somali informants in London. It is hoped that the procedure adopted here may be of vague in suggesting the lines along which field studies of Islam amongst the Somali might profitably be conducted, and also that it may make some contribution to studies of Islam amongst tribal societies generally. (1) Introduction A DESCRIPTION and analysis of religion have now come to be regarded as essential components in any satisfactory study of society. In no case, probably, is this more necessary than in that of an Islamic people where the study of Islam tends to throw as much light on the social structure as the study of the social structure does upon religion. This close interdependence has always been particularly clear in Muslim societies with a state-like structure where the Shari'a (the religious law in the widest sense) has had a wide field of application, although, of course, with the progressive Westernization of the Islamic world the gap between the spiritual and temporal realms is again widening (cf. Gibb, 1947; Milliot, 1949; Falkhry, 1954). But the conformity of social and religious structure is equally far-reaching in a tribal Muslim society although it may not at first sight appear so (2). Somali society is a case in point. This essay sets out to examine the role of Sufism in the social structure of the Somali and is designed to elucidate the nature and function of Somali genealogies. It is unnecessary here to justify the ethnic classification "South-Eastern Cushites" which embraces the Somali, Afar, Saho, Galla, and Beja, and which rests upon similarities in material and social culture, including religion, and upon traditions of common origin (3). I assume here that the pre-Islamic religion of the Muslim structure of Somali society owes much to the interpretation of Islam in terms of Cushitic belief. It follows that it should be possible to relate the social functions of present-day Somali Sufism to syncretism between the two religions. There are still a few tribes (e.g. some of the Dir and Hawiye) upon whom Islam has as yet made little impression and whose Cushitic culture is correspondingly little modified. Again among some of the southern tribes of Somalia, especially those of the shown, and much of the terminology and beliefs of Cushitic religion persists and are applied to Islam. In interpreting Cushitic belief and practice in their present form among the Somali, the wider literature describing the religion of the Afar, Saho, and Galla has been drawn upon, but I do not deduce from Cushitic religion in general any belief or custom for whose independent existence among the Somali there is not ample evidence. It is not implied that all those features of Somali social structure whose interaction with Islam is considered are necessarily typically Cushitic, but simply that in the pre-Islamic state of Somali society they were related to Cushitic institutions. We shall deal particularly with Sufism and examine the way in which its social organization, political and religious structure are associated with the baraka of Sufi sheikhs and their personal genealogies which trace religious power to the lineage of the Prophet Mohammed. It will be argued that the genealogical canalization of divine grace (baraka) dependent upon connexion with Mohammed's clan of Quraysh finds close parallels in the social and religious functions of Somali tribal genealogies (abtirsiinyo). These similarities in function between Arabian genealogies in Sufism and genealogies in the traditional (pre-Islamic) social order account for the ease with which the genealogies of Sufi sheikhs are absorbed amongst the Somali and underlie the Somali claim to descent from the Prophet. Such an interpretation, it will be noticed, does not depend upon the validity of the preceding assumptions on the nature of Cushitic religion, but, since these seem well established it is relevant to consider in the incorporation of Sufi genealogies (4) into the Somali lineage structure in relation to them. The religious functions of Somali genealogies which centre in sacrifice at the tombs of eponymous ancestors are, in the pre-Islamic state of Somali society intrinsically a part of Cushitic religion and knowledge of the larger hierarchy of Cushitic spirit-refractions does, I think, throw light upon the nature of sacrifice to the dead and leads to some elucidation of the religious concepts attached to Somali genealogies. Thus it is proposed that Sufi genealogies are adopted due to the close resemblances in their religious and political functions to Somali tribal genealogies, and that this assimilation corresponds to underlying similarities in the Cushitic and Sufi religious concepts which attach to genealogies. I. Preliminary Some 2,000,000 in number, the Somali occupy the territories of French, British, and ex-Italian Somaliland (the United Nations Trusteeship Territory of Somalia administered by Italy), the south-east dependencies of Ethiopia, and the Northern Frontier Province of Kenya. They are essentially nomadic pastoralists owning in abundance sheep, goats, cattle, and camels used for milking and the transport of the nomad's hut and possessions. In some parts of southern Somalia oxen replace camels as burden animals. Some temporary cultivation is practised, but as a whole, there is little permanent cultivation in the barren pastureland of the north. In the south, however, arable land occurs along the courses of the two rivers which water Somalia (the Shebelle and the Juba), and in the hinterland between them. Here enclaved settlements of Negroes, Bantu and others, are engaged in permanent cultivation, and some Somali tribes, especially those of the Sab family, have adopted a sedentary mode of life. Mixed farming is characteristic of this region, and, under the stimulus of administrative development, there is an increasing tendency for nomadism and transhumance to give place eventually to fixed cultivation. The Somali nation comprises two main subdivisions, the ' Soomaali ' and the ' Sab (5) The Sab tribes form an extensive wedge of cultivators between the rivers of Somalia and separate the nomads of northern Somaliland from those of the south. The ' Soomaali ', who are numerically superior, despise the ' Sab ' for their sedentary way of life, for their obscure origins (Galla and Negroid admixture is pronounced), and for their mixed genealogies. Nevertheless, Sab are included in the designation ' Soomaali ' by outsiders, in much the same way as the inhabitants of the British Isles are frequently indiscriminately referred to as ' English '. Within the Somali nation, Soomaali and Sab are differentiated although there is an increasing tendency for the Soomaali/Sab cleavage to be ignored in the rising tide of Somali nationalism. Urbanized and westernized Somali maintain that discrimination is "old-fashioned", that it is contrary to the injunctions of the Prophet, and that it undermines the unity of the Somali people. In practice and actual social relations, however, these ideals are often betrayed, which serves to indicate how deeply engrained the traditional Somali social order is. Still, within Somaliland, the cleavage remains the primary subdivision of the Somali nation. and in the rest of this paper (3). I shall use the term ' Somali ' t to include the Sab except where a distinction is expressly stated. Each comprises a vast segmentary system of units which may be classified as: tribal families (of which there are seven: Dir, Hawiye, Pre-Hawiye, Isaaq, Daarood, Digil, and Rahanwiin), confederacies, sub-confederacies, tribes, and tribal sections. This terminology which I have elsewhere described (Lewis, 1955, pp.14-40) is illustrated in the accompanying chart. Condensed genealogy of the Somali nation, representing segmentation into social groups, with specimen segmentation of one tribal family, the Daarood (Lewis, 1955, p.15). Qurayshitic lineage Aqil Ibn Abi Talib Hill Samaale Irir PreHawiye Sab Digil * Tunni (1) Rahanwiin Irir Daarood Dir Hawiye Gadabuursi (2) Isaaq Daarood (Tribal family) Harti (Conferacy) Majeerteen (Sub-Conferacy) Usman Muhamuud (Tribe) * Somali tribal families. (1) The Tunni are a tribal confederacy rather than a tribal family (2) The Gadabuursi are of uncertain affiliation, they may belong to the Dir tribal family The tribe stands out as a clearly defined unit which embraces the most generally effective social solidarity. Cattle-theft and war characterize the relations between tribes, and intertribal hostility is frequently of long standing. Internally the tribe tends to be divided by feud amongst its fractions. Within the tribe, however, homicide is normally settled peaceably by payment of blood compensation. With the extended enforcement of the European administrative system tribes are now also, whenever possible, obliged to settle their differences by payment of compensation in place of further fighting. The obligations entailed by tribal membership are clearly formulated in the procedure for the adoption of strangers (10), who undertake to share tribal responsibility in payment and receipt of blood-price and in other matters. In essence the tribe is of one blood, and it is, in short, a social, territorial, political, and to some extent religious unit closely similar to that of the Nuer (Evans-Pritchard, 1940) or of the Arab Bedouin (Jaussen, 1948). It is not, however, entirely exogamous (11). Like the total Somali society of which it is the microcosm, the tribe constitutes a balanced system of sections of various orders of segmentation. In some cases there may be no more than three orders of segmentation within the tribe, but in most cases there are at least four, for some tribes boast as many as 100,000 members. The average. however, seems to be about 20,000 tribesmen. It will be seen that the Somali tribe is a relatively large unit, with a fairly high degree of internal segmentation. In each political unit from the basic group of closely related families to the tribal confederacy, the elders constitute a council representative of the group's interests and convened by a political figurehead. In the tradition of the medieval period when the petty Muslim sultanates of southern Eritrea and north-western Ethiopia engaged (Christian Ethiopia in war, chiefs are styled both by the Somali and by the Administrations as ' Sultan'. But this title does not imply that its incumbents wield authority over a centralized state and is not to be understood in the classical Muslim sense (12). Normally the tribe recognizes a chieftain (called variously boqor, garaad, ugaas), as president of the tribal council. Yet not every tribe owns a common chief. In effect, a chief's authority derives from the structural situation - from the circumstances of tribal allegiance - and fluctuates with it. His power depends largely upon his personality. Thus the position of the Somali chief is closely similar to that of an Arabian sheik (Montagne, 1947, p. 59). Considerable religious power attaches to a chief. In the past chieftaincy seems to have been connected with rainmaking, and there is evidence that this function is still retained amongst the less Islamized tribes of the north-west corner of British Somaliland and of certain parts of Somalia. In many cases, the chief still conducts periodical rainmaking ceremonies (roobdoon ' seeking water') and the great rite (lak) performed in Somalia to mark the onset of the main rains. The chief's glance is referred to as "the burning eye" (il kulul ) and his person is so strongly endowed with power that among some closely related tribes it is usual for a visiting chief to avoid a face to face encounter with his equivalent and to be greeted indirectly by a representative. Consequent upon his special relation with God, a chief can call down blessing or misfortune upon his people and their stock. From the structural point of view, his most important function is to preside at the ceremonies which are held at the tombs of the eponymous tribal ancestors in commemoration of them. Each tribal section celebrates its founder at his shrine, offering up its own particular form of sacrifice (13). (Cerulli, 1913. p.7). Where a hereditary chief is recognized members of his family (called Gob) represent him at sacrifices performed by the heads of subsidiary tribal fractions. In the case of tribal confederacies with a chiefly lineage the same procedure is followed in the ceremonies of component tribes. It is this duty more than any other which establishes the sanctity of a hereditary chief, for, when he represents his people in sacrifice at the eponymous ancestor's shrine, it is his own lineal ancestor whom he commemorates before God. He, the living representative of the founding ancestors, is the closest descendant of those whom he celebrates on behalf of his tribe. Generations later, he in his turn will be regarded as an eponymous founder and will be commemorated in sacrifice by his descendants on behalf of their tribesmen. In the traditional accounts of war and migration it is always the religious aspects of leadership which are signalled out and held to be responsible for the success of one group at the expense of another. The fortunes of war are to some extent regarded as a reflection of ritual efficacy. On the political side again, there is no specifically constituted police organization to enforce the decision which are arrived at by the chief in council, except of course in the pseudo-sultanates which have remained a legacy from earlier times, in some parts of Somalia (Cerulli, 1919, pp 16 ff.). The Somali Lineage System The emphasis placed by Somali upon descent has already been indicated. In fact, the key to an understanding of Somali social structure lies in the functions exercised by genealogies (abtirsiinyo). Corresponding to the segmentary tribal system described is an equally highly segmented lineage system, different orders of fragmentation and aggregation in which are coordinate with equivalent levels of segmentation in the tribal system. The total genealogical tree of the Somali nation represents the unity of all its component parts: tribal families, confederacies. sub-confederacies, tribes, and tribal sections. Social propinquity is expressed in terms of agnatic kinship. The relations between groups of every order are in genealogical idiom expressed as relationships between eponymous ancestors. At a higher level than the tertiary tribal section, or, perhaps in some cases the secondary, such postulated kinship is largely fictitious, of course. Nevertheless it is the principle which Somali assume to underlie social relationship. The basis of political action is the agnatic lineage system - it's religious significance relates to the eponymous ancestors to which it refers, and who are celebrated in the sacrifices performed at their tombs. Such is the traditional social system associated with nomadism and preserved where nomadism still prevails. In the south, however, where sedentary cultivation is replacing nomadism, the relations between territorial groups cease to be always expressible in terms of descent. Here the lineage system is disintegrating. The process of change is gradual; at first territorial units form having a mixed clan or lineage structure in which the political unit is co-ordinate with a dominant clan or lineage. With subsequent development and the continued settlement in the same territorial unit of increasing numbers of immigrants of heterogeneous clan origin, the agnatic lineage structure becomes so distorted and confused that the segmentation of the dominant lineage no longer represents territorial distribution and ceases to have political functions. The principle that neighbours must be agnatic kinsmen. that territorial proximity implies genealogical propinquity, no longer holds. Such disorganization is particularly characteristic of the agricultural tribes of the Sab family. It is important, however, to observe that although the characteristic social unit of these regions is an agricultural settlement or ' mixed-village' (Lewis, 1955. p. 95) with a rudimentary state-like political organization in which lineages have no political significance, agnatic kinship may still be applied at a higher level to describe the relations between larger territorial aggregates such as tribes or tribal confederacies. It is certainly in terms of agnatic kinship, for example, that the relations between tribal families are described although relations among the component units within the Sab family are not at all levels represented genealogically. There is thus a certain inconsistency in the organization of political relations at different levels of the political structure. The lineage system which is the fundamental principle is superseded amongst the smaller units of the Sab, but retains its functions amongst those of a higher order and referring to the tribal families knits the Somali people together as the issue of the Prophet's lineage. There are, . as has been mentioned, seven tribal families - Dir, Pre-Hawiye, Hawiye, Daarood, and Ishaaq of the ' Soomaali ' group; and Digil and Rahanwiin of the ' Sab '. To-day there are few Dir tribes and their importance lies rather in having given rise, through the intermarriage of Dir's daughters with immigrant Arabs, to the great Ishaaq and Daarood tribal families. Ishaaq and Daarood reached the Somali coast at a date which has not yet been historically established but which tradition places between the Hejira and the 15th century (Lewis, 1955, pp. 15-9, 23-4). Traditions of Arabian descent are especially strong amongst the Ishaaq and Daarood. but are held independently by the Hawiye and Dir and even by many of the Sab tribes who, as it happens, have as good claims to Arabian descent as their northern Somali neighbours (the Dir, Ishaaq, Daarood, and Hawiye), who hold them in such contempt. All tribal families can establish connexion with each other without going as far back as the Prophet's lineage, but the breach between ' Soomaali ' and ' Sab ' is only bridged by tracing descent to the Qurayshitic line of Mohammed. Only at this level of inclusiveness are the Soomaali and Sab joined as the Somali nation, and it is in this context especially that the Somali consider themselves the children of the Prophet. For this solidarity transcends all sectional interests and divisions, including that between Soomaali and Sab and represents a real consciousness of common nationality and religion. Individual genealogies (abtirsiinyo) trace ascent through the hierarchy of social units from the smallest tribal section to the tribal family, through the primary bifurcation of Soomaali/Sab, through the Prophet's descendants, and culminate finally in Mohammed, although they often extend beyond this to include the Prophet's ancestors and resemble typical Arabian genealogies (cf. Wustenfeld, 1853). Usually Somali genealogies are imperfectly Arabized (Islamized) and contain a mixture of Cushitic and Arabic names indicative of the absorption of Arab genealogies. Unless, however, Somali wishes to emphasize their exclusiveness with respect to other peoples, that is when only relations between Somali are in question, the genealogies given stop at Soomaali or Sab and comprise between 22 and 30 names. At their greatest extension, genealogies representing political and religious connexion are drawn out to embrace the Prophet and his lineage. II. ISLAM Relations with Arabia: the Introduction of Islam The historical foundations for the contemporary claim to descent from the Prophet lie in the existence of relations between Somaliland and Arabia from the earliest times. Immigration from and to Arabia has always been and still is a constant feature of Somali life. There has always been a considerable floating population of Arabs in various stages of absorption among the Somali. Moreover, there is little doubt that Islam reached Somaliland shortly after the Hejira and its establishment is recorded by Arab writers of the 9th and 10th centuries. The coastal commercial colonies which had been founded by the Himyarite Kingdom before Islam eventually developed into the small Muslim states of Zeila (in its widest extension known as Adal) in British Somaliland, and of Mogadishu in Somalia. These were ruled by local dynasties of Somalized Arabs or Arabized Somalis. The history of Zeila has been adequately described by Trimingham (1952, pp. 58 ff.) and need be no more than summarized here. Cerulli's research (Cerulli, 1994, 1996, 1927) shows that from the beginning of the 10th until half-way through the 13th century Mogadishu was functioning as a trading colony which comprised a federation of Arabian tribes. Persians also played some part in its early history. The Arab settlers had elected chiefs and acknowledged the religious and jural authority of one lineage, the Qahtan ibn Wa'il. In the course of time Somali influence increased and from a loose federation of Arab-Somali peoples, a sultanate with a local dynasty (the Muzaffar) emerged in the 13th century. The Muzaffar sultanate flourished in the 13th and 14th centuries and by this time Shangani and Hamarwein, the two halves of the town of Mogadishu, were firmly established and Hamarwein was dominant. This dynasty survived into the 16th century when the sultanate declined as a commercial centre and reverted to a hegemony of small townships. At the same time Mogadishu was under pressure from tribes of the Hawiye tribal family who were advancing southwards through Somalia. By the second half of the 18th century Somalis had gained control of Shangani and imposed their imam as ruler of Mogadishu. Portuguese and British colonization contributed to the final collapse of the sultanate. In the 17th century the town had been occupied by the Imam of Oman for a short space, and remained after his withdrawal in vague dependence to him. With the division of the Muscat State early in the l9th century, Mogadishu was allotted to the Sultan of Zanzibar, who attempted to secure a more binding dependence by establishing military garrisons along the coast. Almost immediately after, these were sold to Italy and Mogadishu became part of the former Italian colony of Somalia. Southern Ethiopia supplied Zeila with its trade and the town reached its greatest heights in the 14th century, but began to decline after Ahmad Granhe's celebrated campaigns against Christian Ethiopia in the 16th century. Its history was from the beginning the chronicle of a series of wars against the Ethiopian infidels waged in alliance with the other petty Muslim states of southern Eritrea and north-eastern Ethiopia. Mogadishu, as we have seen, had a shorter period of prosperity in the 11th century and then declined fairly rapidly under the joint pressure of nomadic incursions from the interior and the influence of external colonization. Such centres as these had an important effect in the development of Islam among the Somali. With the Arabian colonies firmly entrenched in the other trading ports they provided a foothold from which Mohammedanism spread amongst the nomads of the interior.(14) Sufism among the Somali The Somali are orthodox Sunnis and adherents of the Shafi'ite rite of the Shari'a. Sufism is well developed and the remainder of this paper will deal with the role of Sufism in Somali society. As is well known, this revitalizing current arose in Islam between the 9th and 10th centuries, attaining in its classical form its aesthetic and theological climax in the l1th and 13th centuries. True Sufism is now considered by some authorities to be in decadence (Arberry, 1950). In Somaliland after a period of great activity and general expansion up till the 1930's, the Dervish movement seems to be on the wane, although it is extremely difficult to assess its true importance at the present day. Tribal Sufism has always tended to form a conservative barrier against European administration and many of its adherents have strongly opposed the extension of education lest it should undermine their authority. Administrative hostility, real or imagined, has reinforced the esoteric and clandestine character of Sufi practice and made it all the more difficult to estimate its true significance. However, it is not difficult to study its functional importance as a movement in the social structure of Somali society, for whatever its present number of adherents, it has left an indelible impression as will be seen. The adherents of Sufism belong to the congregations or communities, in many Muslim countries known as zawiya, in Somaliland as jama'a, of the various Orders (tariqa,'The Way ') into which the movement is divided according to the doctrines and services (dhikr) ordained by the founders of Orders. Tariqa means 'path' in the sense of the Way to follow in the search for righteousness and the Way to God. The end of the tariqa is ma'rifa, absorption in God (gnosis). Those who have travelled furthest, through virtue, the practice of devotion, and the grace which God has vouchsafed them are nearest Him. As the Path is traversed successive steps of the way are demarcated as ' stations ' or ' states '. These are discussed below. For his godliness and virtue the founder of each Order is held to be closer to God and to exemplify in his teaching and life the True Path which it behooves the zealous to follow. The founder is a guide who through his particular qualities of devotion. and by his special virtue including the grace (baraka) bestowed upon him by God leads his disciples towards God. His baraka passes to those who follow in his Path and dedicate their lives to his example. Each Order is distinguished by the specific discipline which its founder has established as the True Path. Since there is no God but Allah and Mohammed is His Prophet, religious prestige is a function of connexion with the Prophet's Qurayshitic lineage. Thus those in whose blood (recorded in personal genealogies) the Prophet's grace (baraka ) flows are eminently suitable for election to the office of head (khalifa) of an Order or of a congregation (Sheik). Sheiks and khalefas, as also the founders of the Orders themselves, have personal genealogies tracing descent from ancestors connected with Mohammed. To what extent such claims are historically true is in the present context irrelevant. The tradition is that descent from Quraysh entitles to religious office and that to be a Sufi sheik or khalifa implies such descent. Thus in their furthest extension the personal genealogies of the founders of Orders and of their local representatives, sheiks and khalifas, reach back to the Prophet's lineage. According to the lineage principle in terms of which relationships in Somaliland are understood each jama'a is identified with the genealogy of its khalifa or sheik. The consequences of this in the total genealogical structure of Somali society will shortly be seen. Within each tariqa the authority of the incumbent of the office of regional khalifa is founded upon a chain of tradition which has two branches. Unlike his personal genealogy, these attach to the office, not to the person. The silsilat al-baraka (chain of benediction) traces the chain of grace which unfolds from the founder of the Order through his successive disciples down to the present incumbent of the office of khalifa. The silsilat al-wird, the other branch, connects the founder with the Prophet and, through his mediation, with Allah. The silsila (lit. 'chain ' ) consists of a list of names through which spiritual affiliation is traced and in some ways resembles a genealogy. It is quite separate, however, from the sheik's personal genealogy although that also is regarded as endowed with power. In initiation (wird), the covenant ('ahd) of the tariqa is administered to the novice by the head of the community in a formal ceremony at which the service (dhikr) pertaining to the Order is celebrated (for a description, see Robecchi-Bricchetti, 1899, p. 423; Trimingham, 1952, p. 237). The novice swears to accept the khalifa as his guide and spiritual director through the baraka of the founder. He is then instructed in the performance of prayer tasks (called variously awrad, ahzab, and rawatib), and is provided with a prayer-mat to carry upon his shoulder, a vessel for ablution, and a rosary (tusbah) to finger as he recites his prayers. Somali tariqas are characterized by fewer stages in the novice's progress towards illumination than were customary in classical Sufism (see on this point, Arberry, 1950, pp. 74- ff.). At first the novice is styled 'aspirant' (murid) but also referred to by his brethren ('ikwan') as ' brother '. The majority of initiates never proceed beyond this stage. Qutb, which is the next step, requires a certain degree of mystical perfection but is not comparable to the qutb of literary Sufism. Each successive step becomes increasingly difficult, and al-wasil the next grade, signifying union with God after long strife (i.e. the attainment of gnosis), corresponds to induction to the leadership of a fraternity. Al-maddad, the final goal, is attained by few pilgrims indeed, for it is that reached usually only by the founders of the Orders themselves. Membership of the community does not imply celibacy; adherents live with their families in the community. Women have their own tariqas where they participate in the services in the name of the Prophet's daughter, Fatima, whom they regard as the founder of women's Orders. Female adherents are veiled (the veil is not normally worn by women in Somaliland), and are generally more amply clad than other Somali women. But for them also there is no embargo on marriage. There are always many people who although not formally admitted to an Order and not living in the community, follow the public ceremonies while ignorant of their esoteric content. Acknowledging the piety and religious powers of the founder whom they venerate as a saint, they regularly call upon his followers whom they regard as similarly endowed to act as mediators in disputes. Many of the brethren thus fulfil the functions of qadis and this is one of the many ways in which the sphere of interest of the Sufi community encroaches upon that of the tribal structure. Tribesmen turn to the head of the jama'a for assistance and counsel, to the neglect of the tribal authorities This is one instance of a wide and far-reaching conflict between Sufism on the one hand and the tribal organization on the other which we shall consider in some detail below. SOMALI TARIQAS The three most prominent tariqas in Somaliland are in the order of their introduction, the Qadiriya, the Ahmediya, and the Saalihiya. The Rifa'iyya tariqa is represented amongst Arab settlers but is not widely distributed or important. In the south the Order's main centres are the coastal towns of Mogadishu and Merka: there are also some adherents in the British Protectorate. The Qadiriya, the oldest Sufi Order in Islam, was introduced into Harar in the 15th century by Sharif Abu Bakr ibn 'Abd Allah al-'Aydarus (known as al-Qutb ar-Rabbani, ("The Divine Axis"), who died in 1508-9 (A.H.91 1 ) . Abu Bakr is probably the best-known Shai'ite saint in southern Arabia - where he is called al-'Adani (15) and his mosque is the most famous in Aden (16). The Qadiriya became the official Order of Harar and has considerable influence in the surrounding country. To the south the Order does not appear to have acquired much importance in the interior of Somalia until the beginning of the l9th century when the settlement of Bardera, known locally as jamaha, was founded on the Juba river. The Qadiriya has a high reputation for orthodoxy, is on the whole literary rather than propagandist, and is said to maintain a higher standard of Islamic instruction than its rivals. The Ahmediya, and the derivative Saalihiya, were both introduced into southern Somalia towards the close of the last century, although the Ahmediya may have entered British Somaliland somewhat earlier. This Order was founded by Sayyid Ahmad ibn Idris al-Fasi (1760-1837) of Mecca and brought to Somalia by Sheik Ali Maye Durogba of Merka. Muhammad ibn Salih, in 1887, founded the Saalihiya as an offshoot of the Rashidiya founded by Ahmad ibn Idris's pupil Ibrahlm al-Rashid (Cerulli, 1923, pp. 11, 12; Trimingham, 1959, pp. 235 6). The principal Saalihiya proselytizer in Somalia was Sheik Muhammad Guled, a former slave, who launched the Order there by the foundation of a community among the Shidle (a Negroid people occupying the mid-reaches of the Shebelle river, see Lewis, 1955, p. 41). Muhammad Guled died in 1918 and his tomb is at Misra (named after Cairo, Misra in Somali), one of the communities which he had established among the Shidle. The Order's stronghold is in Somalia but there are some communities in British Somaliland. According to Cerulli (op. cit., pp. 14, 18) the Saalihiya is strongly propagandist and inferior to the Qadiriya in mysticism and teaching. In the past it has been closely associated with Somali nationalism and the two rebellions of this century have taken place under its mantle and in its name. The more important rising was that led by Muhammad b. 'Abd Allah (born about 1865) of the Habr Suleemaan Ogaadeen tribe, who made several pilgrimages to Mecca (1890-9), and joining the Saalihiya, sought to attract the northern Somali to this Order. He founded several communities and in 1895 proclaimed himself khalifa-designate in Somaliland. In 1899 he assumed the title of Sunni Mahdi and initiated the jihad against all infidels. He was repudiated by the leader of the Saalihiya in Mecca and from 1900 to 1904 British forces, with from time to time half-hearted Ethiopian and nominal Italian support, conducted four major campaigns against him. His power was continually diminished but the rebellion was never decisively crushed and dragged on until 1920 when the Mahdi died. The Ahmediya with the smallest number of adherents of the three Orders is said to concentrate more on teaching than the Saalihiya (Cerulli, 1923, pp. 12 ff.). Both Orders are for the most part distributed in cultivating villages along the two rivers of Somalia and in the fertile land between them. Qadiriya congregations, on the other hand, are more usually dispersed amongst tribes and do not form autonomous settlements of cultivators. This, naturally, is particularly the case in the north where there is little arable land. Where the congregation forms a stable cultivating settlement, the land, which has been acquired through adoption into a host tribe, is the collective property of the community and is divided among the affiliates by their sheik. Continuity of tenure depends upon the maintenance of satisfactory relations with the tribe of adoption and the regular fulfillment of the various obligations which adoption imposes. Tenure is precarious and is in theory at any time revocable by the ceding tribe. It follows that the individual holdings obtained by affiliates are not automatically inheritable; absolute rights to land or crops are never obtained by members of the community. If a member leaves he relinquishes all rights to his holding and probably his crops also, although he may sometimes be allowed a portion of the harvest. The fields are worked collectively so that the harvest in each brother's holding represents the collective labour of the community. Part of the harvest is used to maintain the funds of the jama'a, which also depend upon gifts made by tribesmen and payments for ritual or religious services performed by affiliates. Liabilities met from these general funds consist of aid to the poor, assistance of pilgrims to Mecca, and expenses connected with missionary work and the various dues payable to the tribe of adoption. As far as the host tribe is concerned the jama'a acts as a tribal section subject to the same privileges and duties as are other sections of the tribe. Congregations act as training centres for the devouts (wadaad), (17) usually described as ' bush teachers ' or ' bush preachers ', who wander from camp to camp through the bush stopping now and then to hold classes where at least some rudimentary knowledge of theology is imparted. In these transitory bush schools children are taught prayers and verses from the Koran and generally acquire the ability to read and write Arabic. Children receive a thorough grounding in the Koran and their familiarity with Koranic texts remains with them throughout their lives. Wadaad are also important as acting in the capacity of unofficial qadis administering the Shari'a to the extent to which its competence is recognized by tribal authorities, i.e. in matrimonial affairs, inheritance of property, contract. mortgage, etc., and assessment of the requisite compensation for injuries (18). In intertribal politics they have little authority to award decisions, and where their recommendations conflict with tribal interests they are normally ignored for Wadaad here act as mediators rather than as arbitrators. It is probably through the Wadaad who issue from the jama'a communities that Sufism exerts its greatest influence in Somali social structure. The parent communities themselves are essentially centres of mystical devotion and have produced a considerable Arab-Somali religious literature written mainly in Arabic but in some cases in Somali transcribed in an adaptation of Arabic script (19). It is probable also that Sufi works are to be found in Somali oral literature and research should be directed to discovering to what extent this is the case. Mysticism is adopted as a means to union with God (gnosis); Somali Sufistic literature treats of divine ecstasy and is similar to Sufi writing in general. An interesting example is an unpublished manuscript called tawassul ash- shaikh Awes written by Sheik Awes, (20) which consists of a collection of songs for dhikr. Where such works are biographical, as for example in the autobiography of Sheik 'Ali Afaye Durogba, (21) they contain an account of the author's justification to claim descent from Quraysh. Almost all such works include a section in which the author's claims to Qurayshitic descent are set forth. Perhaps the most important of Somali Sufi literature is a collection of works by haaji 'Abdullahi Yusif published under the title al-majmu'at al-mubaraka (22). Haaji 'Abdullahi of the Qadiriya tariqa was a member of a group of sheiks (known as Asheraf), (23) attached to the Majeerteen tribes of the Daarood tribal family; his work is analysed by Cerulli (1923, pp. 13-4, 92-5). THE CULT OF SAINTS An important feature of the Sufi communities lies in the extent to which their founders are venerated. The local founders of Orders and congregations ( jama'a) are often sanctified after their death. Their veneration gives rise to cults which overshadow the devotion due to the true founder of the tariqa and even of the Prophet Mohammed. Their tombs become shrines (gashin in Somalia), tended by a small body of followers or the descendants of the sheik and those who have inherited his baraka. To the shrines come the members of the Order as well as local tribesmen who are not initiates, to make sacrifice as occasion demands, and to take part in the annual pilgrimage to the shrine of the saint on the anniversary of his death. Outstanding events in his life are similarly celebrated. Muslim saint-days which have no connexion with indigenous saints are unpopular especially in the interior. But to the extent to which the Qadiriya Order is followed emphasis has been given to the saint-day (mawlid ) of the founder al-Jilani, although even this festival enjoys only limited observance. Saints are not always associated with a particular congregation or Order. Many are ubiquitous, and common to several Orders, share the same veneration within the religion of the country. They are venerated for particular qualities. One of the most popular in Somalia, Saint Au Hiltir (a name suggestive of non-Islamic origin) is regarded as the protector of man from the attacks of crocodiles; another, Saint Au Mad, is recognized by tribes of the Rahanwiin tribal-family as the guardian of the harvest. Tombs are scattered all over Somaliland and many, certainly, commemorate pre-Islamic figures who have been assimilated in Islam. Some of the families acting as the custodians of their ancestors' shrines have developed into small clans, usually dispersed; others have lost all autonomy and are scattered as holy men (wadaad ) proselytizing and teaching. Others again remain attached to a particular tribe as the holders of a hereditary office of qadi. Such, for example, is the case with the seven lineages of the Gasar Gudda tribe of Lugh-Ferrandi in Somalia, where-the office of tribal chief rotates among six lineages, while that of qadi is invested in the seventh, the Rer Dulca Mado (Ferrandi, 1903, pp. 213, 262 ff.; Lewis, 1953, p. 115). This represents one of the possible conclusions in the history of a saintly family attached initially to a tribe in clientship, where the religious group has worked its way into the lineage structure of the tribe and established a permanent position. A good example of a dispersed clan venerated for their baraka are the Rer Sheik Mumin whose ancestor's shrine is at Bur Hakaba among the Elai of southern Somalia. Their influence extends throughout the entire Rahanwiin tribal family and tribute is paid to them on account of their reputation as sorcerers (Ferrandi, 1903, pp. 138-9, 942-3). Ferrandi describes them unflatteringly as a gang of robbers implicated in cattle raiding and profiting by their ancestor's sanctity to impress and exploit ignorant people. A similar dispersed sheikly group are the Au Qutuh of the British Protectorate whom Burton (1894, I, P. 193) described as the descendants of Au Qutb ibn Faqih 'Emar who was then claimed to have crossed from the Hejaz ' ten generations ago ' and to have settled with his six sons in Somaliland. The Au Qutub are widely scattered and are found as far south as the Ogaden. They have the title ' Shaykash ' which Burton translates ' reverend '. In fact, such families of Arabian origin are found all over Somaliland and are often rapidly assimilated in the Somali social structure where their members enjoy high prestige (cf. Cerulli, 1926). THE ROLE OF SUFISM IN THE SOCIAL STRUCTURE We may now consider the position held by Sufi tariqas and congregations or communities in the social structure. It is obvious that for the total social structure the fraternities provide potential channels of alliance amongst warring tribes separated by the very nature of the tribe. For the communities, economic and political entities though they may be, and often themselves at enmity even within the same Order, are bound together through community of religious purpose. They aim at the development and diffusion of Islam. Such were the ideals so successfully translated into a transcendental movement ignoring the narrow bonds of tribalism by the Saalihiya Mahdi haaji Muhammad b. Abdallah. His campaign is an illustration of the potentialities which the tariqa organization offers for the extension of national unity when a sufficiently great figure emerges to inspire such feeling. Now, as elsewhere in Islam, the new urban political parties seem to have their roots in the tariqa organization and to be a development from it (24). Trans-tribal nationalist aspirations which previously found some outlet in it are now promoted by political associations, the strongest of which is at the moment the Somali Youth League (S.Y.L.). Within the tribal structure individual communities exercise considerable influence, and it is this aspect of their social functions which I wish particularly to consider. As we have seen, among the nomads and especially in the north of Somaliland where there is little or no arable land, communities cannot generally form cultivating settlements as they do in the less barren south. They cannot therefore so easily exist as independent autonomous local groups. Among the southern cultivating tribes (the Sab) settled cultivating communities occupy an interstitial position on the ground. As social entities they are accordingly in a better position to develop into units independent of tribal allegiance and to play an interstitial role in the social structure. This naturally has important consequences in the lineage structure. To take an example. The Qadiriya community of Bardera (known locally as the jamaha) was founded on the Juba River at the beginning of the l9th century by Sheik Ali Kurre, a Rahanwiin tribesman. New settlements quickly sprang up round the mother community. The affiliates were faced with considerable hostility from the surrounding tribes. They fought the Galla Boran, the Gasar Gudda (Somali Rahanwiin) who were successfully defeated and their centre Lugh-Ferrandi destroyed, and, finally, the people of Bardera extended their sway to the coast subjecting the villages of Baidoa, Molimat, and the coastal town of Brava. Thus they established dominion over all tribes of the Rahanwiin tribal family. Retribution, however, was to follow. The Rahanwiin recovered strength under the leadership of the Sultan of the Geledi (then a powerful Rahanwiin tribe), and after a series of battles besieged and destroyed Bardera in 1843. For some years Bardera lay deserted but began to rise again with the foundation of a new community by Sheik Muhammad Eden of the Elai. By 1924 it was possible for Colucci (1924, p. 264) to describe the new centre in the following terms: ' The settlements of Bardera constitute a truly independent territorial group freed from all adherence to the tribes from whom the original grants of land were obtained '. ADOPTION All communities originally enter the tribal structure through an act of adoption. Genealogically this implies incorporation into a lineage. Colucci (1994, pp. 78 ff.) has drawn attention to the frequent occurrence in tribal genealogies of names signifying ' holy ', ' religious ', ' saintly ', etc., which denote the attachment to tribal units of Sufi communities or groups of holy men celebrated for their baraka. Such titles are:sheikal, asheraf', faqir , fogi, 'faqih ', 'haaji ', ' hashya ', and other synonyms not noticed by Colucci. The fact that some tribal families, especially those with particularly strong traditions of Arabian descent such as the Ishaaq and Daarood of northern Somaliland are often referred to as 'haaji ' or ' hashya (25) indicates that they are in some sense regarded as sanctified. This is an illustration of the extent to which religion is identified with tribal structure among the northern nomads. We shall return to this point later. In the genealogies of the southern cultivating tribes (the Sab), however, such words tend to occur in the lower portions of tribal genealogies. Sometimes their occurrence indicates fairly feeble ties of attachment between adopting tribe and priestly section. In other cases where the attachment is more tenuous these titles represent extraneous aggregates often of long standing. As examples of dispersed clans of holy men we have already considered the Rer Sheik Mumin among the Rahanwiin and the Rer Au Qutub of British Somaliland. Both are typical representatives of this class. The Sheikal Lobogi section of the Herab tribe of Somalia are, on the other hand, a good example of a religious group or community firmly assimilated to the tribe of adoption (see genealogy above, p. 588). Sheik Lobogi, the eponymous ancestor of the group, is a descendant of Sheik Saad whose tomb is at Geledi in Somalia. Groups which have not achieved such firm integration in the tribal structure or assimilation in the lineage structure, are the Asheraf among the Saraman tribal cluster, (26) the Walamoji among the Elai, (27) and the Waaqbarre among the Dabarre tribe. The Asheraf rose to power in a manner typical of such groups, they acted as mediators in a series of disputes amongst the Saraman tribes which concluded in the expulsion of one, the Harau, and the division of another, the Lisan, into two new tribes, the Lisan Horsi and the Lisan Barre. At Saraman, the Asheraf are known as the ' Three Feet ' and take part in tribal councils as arbitrators and peace-makers. There are many religious clans known as Asheraf in Somaliland, and no doubt some of them derive ultimately from immigrant Ashraf. In view of the importance of Mogadishu as a centre in the diffusion of Islam it may well be that the Sharifs at present living in the Shangani quarter of Mogadishu who are of the Ba 'Alwi clan of Hadramaut,(28) and who settled in Somaliland in the 17th century, may constitute one of the original nuclei from which Ashraf blood has spread. The Walamoji wield considerable influence in Elai politics through the high prestige which they enjoy as men of religion. They claim to have accompanied the Elai in their wanderings before they reached their present territory, but they only recently became the official sheiks of the Elai after they had ousted another religious group - the 'Rer Fogi'. The founder is said to be of Galla Arussi origin, but as in the case of all religious sections they have vague traditions of descent from Quraysh which they exploit to the full. The Walamoji have

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