Fez Festival of Sufi Culture ~ An eclectic program around the religion of love
The program of this years edition will focus on the Sufi heritage - literary, intellectual, artistic and spiritual.
Since its founding nine years ago the festival has been a spotlight on Sufism in all its forms. This year the theme "Religion is love" will tap into the poetry and writings of Rabi Ibn Arabi and Rumi with poetry readings, meetings, round tables, musical evenings.
The programme from 18 to April 25, will highlight the rich literary, intellectual, artistic and spiritual aspects of Sufi cultures.
"Given the din of the news, it is not easy to remember this simple reality, religion is Love. Regarding Islam, such an assertion is very much inaudible. Our object is to initiate yet another dialogue about the virtues of tolerance and openness of the third branch of the Abrahamic tradition. We must go further and beyond a personal attitude. There needs to be understanding that, from the dawn of this tradition to the present,Sufism is a living testimony of love,"- Fez Festival of Sufi Culture Director, Faouzi Skalli.
According to Faouzi Skalli, "Love was considered the highest achievement of spirituality and faith. Love of neighbour, love each other. From this love Rabi reached beyond heaven and hell, and Rumi testifies to the conflagration and devastation ("I was raw and then cooked, he said, I am now consumed"). Ibn Arabi draws our attention to the fact that it will forever remain a mystery. This is the sensitive heart of the Fez Festival of Sufi culture.
"This meeting between a cultural heritage and a living teaching brings us to the heart of the civilisation of Islam, with its ability to renew itself in a creative way, to perpetuate and to reinvent itself. Such a path leads us into an art and a philosophy of life which can combine material and spiritual goals," says Skalli
The Festival will pay tribute to Tunisian thinker and writer Abdelwahhab Meddeb, who died Nov. 6, 2014, with the first round table scheduled for April 19th being "Tribute to Abdelwahhab Meddeb: Sufi moments."
Poet, Islamic scholar, essayist and novelist, born in 1946 in Tunis, Abdelwahab Meddeb advocated tirelessly for Enlightened Islam, a dialogue of civilisations against the clash of nations, images and representations. Abdelwahab Meddeb taught comparative literature at the University of Paris X-Nanterre, and led the magazine "Daedalus" and produced the program "Cultures of Islam 'on France Culture.
He was the author of thirty books, including "Talismano" (Christian Bourgois, 1979), "Counter-sermons" (Seuil, 2006), "Curse of the Exit". "Islam between civilization and barbarism" (Seuil, 2008), "civilization Pari" (Seuil, 2009), "Spring in Tunis, the metamorphosis of history" (Albin Michel, 2011) and "A History of relations Jewish-Muslim origins to the present day" (Albin Michel, with Benjamin Stora, 2013).