Shaykh Sufi
Abd Al-Rahman bin Abdallah al Shashi (b. 1829 - 1904), popularly known as Shaykh Sufi, was a 19th century Somali
Somali people
Somalis are an ethnic group located in the Horn of Africa, also known as the Somali Peninsula. The overwhelming majority of Somalis speak the Somali language, which is part of the Cushitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family...

 scholar, poet
A poet is a person who writes poetry. A poet's work can be literal, meaning that his work is derived from a specific event, or metaphorical, meaning that his work can take on many meanings and forms. Poets have existed since antiquity, in nearly all languages, and have produced works that vary...

, reformist and astrologist.


Shaykh Sufi was born in Mogadishu
Mogadishu , popularly known as Xamar, is the largest city in Somalia and the nation's capital. Located in the coastal Benadir region on the Indian Ocean, the city has served as an important port for centuries....

, where he founded the Qadiriyyah congregation, an Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

ic school of thought or tariqah
A tariqa is an Islamic religious order. In Sufism one starts with Islamic law, the exoteric or mundane practice of Islam and then is initiated onto the mystical path of a tariqa. Through spiritual practices and guidance of a tariqa the aspirant seeks ḥaqīqah - ultimate truth.-Meaning:A tariqa is a...

whose disciples included colleagues of his such as Uways al-Barawi
Uways al-Barawi
Sheikh Uways Al-Barawi was a Somali scholar credited with reviving Islam in 19th century East Africa.-Early life:Sheikh Uways was born in Barawe on the Benadir of Somalia coast, the son of a local religious teacher. He obtained a simple elementary education in basic theological sciences, and only...

. He studied astrology
Astrology consists of a number of belief systems which hold that there is a relationship between astronomical phenomena and events in the human world...

 and wrote extensively on the future of Mogadishu and religious sciences, and authored popular books such as Shadjarat al Yakim ("The Tree of Certitude").

Besides his scholarly career, Shaykh Sufi was known as a great mediator between merchants and shop keepers in the coastal cities. As a reformist, he is credited with having put an end to what he considered to be the urbanites' immoral dancing rituals. In private, he also wrote many poems, which would eventually be taken up by fellow scholars such as Abdallah al-Qutbi
Abdallah al-Qutbi
Abdallah Yusuf al-Qutbi was a Somali polemicist, theologian and philosopher who lived during the 19th and 20th centuries in Somalia.-Biography:...

 in their books.

Pilgrimage to his Mausoleum

After his death in 1904, Shaykh Sufi's resting place became a site of annual pilgrimage
A pilgrimage is a journey or search of great moral or spiritual significance. Typically, it is a journey to a shrine or other location of importance to a person's beliefs and faith...

 for the faithful from across Somalia
Somalia , officially the Somali Republic and formerly known as the Somali Democratic Republic under Socialist rule, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. Since the outbreak of the Somali Civil War in 1991 there has been no central government control over most of the country's territory...

 and East Africa
East Africa
East Africa or Eastern Africa is the easterly region of the African continent, variably defined by geography or geopolitics. In the UN scheme of geographic regions, 19 territories constitute Eastern Africa:...

. A cemetery would eventually be constructed around his mausoleum
A mausoleum is an external free-standing building constructed as a monument enclosing the interment space or burial chamber of a deceased person or persons. A monument without the interment is a cenotaph. A mausoleum may be considered a type of tomb or the tomb may be considered to be within the...

, where prominent Somali ministers
Minister (government)
A minister is a politician who holds significant public office in a national or regional government. Senior ministers are members of the cabinet....

, entertainers and Presidents would also be buried.
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