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Afghanistan's IslamFrom Conversion to the Taliban$
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Nile Green

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780520294134

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520294134.001.0001

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Earning a Living

Earning a Living

Promoting Islamic Culture in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries

(p.89) 4 Earning a Living
Afghanistan's Islam

R. D. McChesney

University of California Press

In that part of Central Asia now known as the country of Afghanistan, the patterns of present-day religious expression and identity were set in the 16th and 17th centuries. The region was a frontier connecting three expansive states whose politics shaped the embedding of religious traditions. The long Iranian presence in the south and west infused Imam Shafiism in the central and western parts of Afghanistan while the influence of the intellectual heritage of Central Asia assured the dominance of Hanafi Sunnism in the north and eastern parts of the region. Sufism with its “thousand Ways” and universal reverence for the family of the Prophet, the ahl al-bayt, provided common ground. This chapter examines the ways in which the Islamic culture of the region was reproduced and the kinds of scholars who emerged preeminent. Mostly it considers the ways in which material support for scholarship was distributed, an essential component of cultural reproduction, and the instruments for its distribution.

Keywords:   Afghanistan, Islam, Baha al-Din ‘Amili, Mawlana Yusuf Qarabaghi, madrasa-building, Bukhara, Samarqand, Balkh

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