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Islamic sufi in Aleppo

Sam Farah of the BBC Arabic Service visits an Islamic Sufi gathering in Aleppo, in northern Syria. He discovers how the worlds of music, religion and politics collide.

Branded by the USA as a ‘rogue state’, yet possessing one of the world’s oldest and richest cultures, Syria is little understood as a nation.

Sam Farah of the BBC Arabic Service visits an Islamic Sufi gathering in Aleppo, in northern Syria. With Israel on one border, and Iraq on another, religion in Syria is often politically charged, and at the gathering of Sheikh Habboush, music is seen as a potent weapon for Islam.

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1 hour

Last on

Sat 4 Feb 2006 15:00

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  • Aleppo

    Music in Syria

    Duration: 06:02

  • Music Played

    • Sheikh Habboush

      Sufi prayer ritual

      • BBC recording on location.
  • A Sufi prayer meeting

    The importance of Aleppo to Sufi music

    Duration: 02:53

  • A Sufi prayer ritual

    Performed by Sheikh Habboush.

    Duration: 12:06

  • Music Played

    • Sheikh Habboush

      Sufi prayer ritual

      • BBC recording on location.
  • Improvisation and vocal acrobatics

    In the music of the Sufi of Aleppo.

    Duration: 12:37

  • Music Played

    • Sheikh Habboush

      Sufi prayer ritual

      • BBC recording on location.
  • Trance

    The weekly sermons of the prayer meeting.

    Duration: 02:46

  • A Sufi prayer ritual

    Performed by Sheikh Habboush.

    Duration: 11:15

  • Music Played

    • Sheikh Habboush

      Sufi prayer ritual

      • BBC recording on location.
  • Sheikh Habboush

    A poem on the Prophet Mohammed

    Duration: 05:33

  • The meaning of the lyrics

    In Sheikh Habboush's music

    Duration: 05:32

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