Official international site
Brotherhood/sisterhood refers to activities that promote the recognition of our unity with each other in the divine. Human beings are as drops of water from the divine ocean of life; we are all individual droplets, but we are also part of the whole ocean, and each is equally beloved of the One.
Sufis seek to harmonize with others across the distinctions of nation, race, religion, class, caste or gender. The ideal of unity is expressed in group activities – internationally, nationally, and locally. People meet at camps and retreats that offer teachings, spiritual practices, and opportunities to share experiences. Locally, smaller groups meet regularly for the same purpose. These interactions and opportunities to become part of a community of like-minded seekers of truth give nourishment to the soul, and help individuals progress along their own spiritual paths.
Interactions with other groups striving for peace and unity outside of the Sufi community are also forms of brotherhood/sisterhood activity. Many participants of the local, national and international communities actively engage with these wider communities.
The concept of brotherhood/sisterhood is also an internal activity for each individual. Most of us carry prejudices and preferences. Taking part in the spiritual community, at any level, challenges preconceptions and, if the heart is open, helps the individual not only to higher levels of compassion and understanding for others, but to a recognition of his or her own imperfections and blind-spots. In this way, spiritual community provides heart-centred friendships, and offers valuable lessons in crossing borders into the territory of the ‘other’. These are sacred opportunities for individuals to polish the mirrors of their own hearts so that the divine light can more brightly shine through them.
Opportunities now abound for spiritual community to transcend local geography. Online forums, social media and electronic newsletters offer channels for brothers and sisters to communicate with each other across the world, to encourage each other to grow as spiritual beings, and to remind each other that we are all droplets in the divine ocean of life.