Minutes and Executive Reports
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Minutes of The 2018 Sufi Movement in Canada Annual General Meeting
The meeting was held as a video conference on Monday, September 17, 9:00AM PDT, 10:00AM MDT.
Council members present:
Fazalunissa Carole Harmon, Jelaluddin Gary Sill, Kuan Yin Cindy Pujos-Michel, Akbar Lody Kieken and Nirtan Carol Ann Sokoloff. David Murray attended through his phone.
Members present:
Qahira Fran Becker
The Invocation was recited by all present.
Call To Order
Meeting called to order by Jelaluddin

Approval of last year’s AGM dated Monday, September 18, 2017

Moved by Fazalunissa, Seconded by Kuan Yin
As all reports were made available to councillors and members before the meeting, the individual reports were not read out but were voted on for approval. All reports appear in full below.

The National Representative report

Moved by Akbar, Seconded by Kuan Yin

Secretary report

Moved by Fazalunissa, Seconded by Akbar

Treasurer report

Moved by Akbar, Seconded by Jelaluddin

Centre Reports


Moved by Fazalunissa, Seconded by Kuan Yin


Moved by Kuan Yin, Seconded by Fazalunissa

Qualicum Beach

Moved by Fazalunissa, Seconded by Jelaluddin


Moved by Akbar, Seconded by Nirtan


Moved by Fazalunissa, Seconded by Nirtan

New Business

Election of Board of Directors

Moved by Nirtan that the current board of directors remain in office for another year and that if any other parties are interested in joining that body the the board be entitled to approve them at a later date.

Moved by Nirtan, Seconded by Fazalunissa

Kuan Yin suggested that an invitation for members to join the Board of Directors including a description of the responsibilities of the Board members, be sent with the minutes of this meeting.

A video conference General Meeting to be held immediately after the AGM to discuss new business.
Date of Next AGM
Moved by Fazalunissa that the next AGM be held Monday, September 16, 2019. Seconded by Akbar.

Motion to Adjourn

Moved by Fazalunissa

Meeting ended at 9:14PST


David Murray | National Representative’s Report

September 11, 2018

The International Council/Committee of the International Sufi Movement (ISM) is composed of the National Representatives, the Executive Committee and the Representative(s) General. The role of the National Representative group is intended to be an advisory body to Executive Committee. It is the means to reach out to the ISM members around the world. Rani McLaughlin in Portland is the appointed Coordinator of the National Representative body. National Representatives have been appointed in many countries around the world including Holland, Belgium, Spain, Canada, USA, Mexico, Columbia, Ecuador, New Zealand and Australia.

This has been a breakthrough year for the National Representatives of the Sufi Movement. 2018 was the first year that we were able to take advantage of 21st C. technology and join each other via ZOOM on our computers. Seeing our faces on the computer screen and being to talk together as if we were in the same room has been revolutionary. This was never possible before. The hope was that the National Representatives, and the mureeds they represent in their respective countries, would be able to better participate in the administration and decision-making of the Sufi Movement though their participation on the International Council. At the same time, the intent is to get to know each other better, strengthen our friendships and share our activites, feelings and concerns.

This has been a tumultuous year in regard the re-organization of the ISM. We have gone from the dual leadership of Nawab and Nuria, to the single leadership of Pir Nawab. The Pir-O-Murshid Council has been disbanded. The future of the National Representatives group is in question because of a split of allegiances. Those countries that supported the dual leadership are wondering if they should remain in the Sufi Movement organization. Talks within and outside the International Sufi Movement are currently underway.

The hope among the National Representatives was that the voice of the mureeds they represent would be welcomed and solicited by Executive Committee, and that there would be a democracy of voices that would be beneficial to the governing of the ISM. Given the recent changes, and the current questioning of mureeds and their National Representatives around the world, the future of the National Representatives group is undecided.

Acceptance of the National Representative's Report

Moved by ___, seconded by ___


Jelaluddin Gary Sill | Secretary Report

Correspondence and Calendar items

2017.09.18 The SMIC AGM was held via a Zoom video conference call

A House Blessing was enjoyed by all at the home of Akbar and Sharda, Qualicum Beach, BC.

A Universal Worship Service conducted by Akbar and Sharda was held in Vancouver at a memorial service for Chloe O’Loughlin, Amir’s O’Loughlin’s beloved wife.

Council members met via a Zoom conference call.

A Zoom video conference call was shared by the ISM National Representatives including Sakya in Holland, Amin in Columbia, Baasit in Equador, David and Jelaluddin in Canada, Rani in the US and Nuria in Australia. A friendly interaction characterized the meeting.

David suggests a leadership retreat at the Haven in 2019

A Zoom video conference call was shared by the ISM National Representatives including Sakya, Amin, Baasit, David and Jelaluddin, and Rani. Also present were Karima and Karim from Mexico, Magda from South Africa, Jelal Docx from Belgium, Ameena and Puran from Italy and Dipali from Spain. (1.Screen shot below)

2018.06.17 A Canadian National Retreat, organized by Fazalunissa Harmon and Jelaluddin Sill was held from June 17 to 21 at Loon Lake, BC. Guest presenters include Rani McLaughlin, Nuria Sabato and Gemma Erickson.

2018.06.30 Agenda item for the next meeting of the Pir-o-Murshid Council was circulated. It proposed a return to single leadership. (2. text below)

2018.07.07 Murshida Nuria Sabato announces her resignation (3.Text below)

2018.07.09 The ISM Executive Supervisor circulates the response of the leadership to Murshida Nuria Sabato’s resignation. (4. Text below)

2018.07.11 Murshid Nawab calls International Committee Zoom meeting which includes the ISM Executive and National Representatives (5a. Agenda and image below)

2018.07.14 IC International Committee Zoom meeting (5b. Participant list below)

2018.07.20 Two weeks following the resignation, the Executive Committee unanimously recognized Murshid Nawab as the single leader and Pir of the Movement. (6. Text below)

2018.08.10 “A 1977 Sufi Declaration” of the Edmonton Sufis was sent out to all Sufis on the Canadian eMail list. (7. Text and image below)

2018.08.10 The Banstraat house that holds the Sufi Movement Museum has been sold. Plans are to move it to the A. Paulownastreet in The Hague.

2018.08.25 Video Conference call with ISM National Representatives. (8. Minutes below)

2018.08.31 A two day regional retreat, “Pearls From The Ocean Unseen”, organized by Kuan Yin and the Banff Sufi Centre at The Crossing at Ghost River, was held August 31st.

2018.09.17 The SMIC holds it’s AGM followed by a General Meeting.
click to enlarge images in lightbox
1. Zoom video conference call was shared by ISM National Representatives
2. Pir-o-Murshid Council Agenda Item
received 2018.06.30

Annexe C
Ad 6. Desire to return to a single leadership

One of the main responsibilities of the Pir-o-Murshid Council is to give advice on how to improve the ways in which we work for the Message.
We feel that despite all our efforts, there still is a lot to be desired. There is an increasing feeling that “we are stuck”. Increasingly, mureeds ask what is happening in International Head Quarters, why they do not hear from the new leadership, what are the plans for the future? Therefore, we would like to raise the issue whether it would not be better to return to a single leadership. We would like to emphasise that we not only feel the need to identify a problem; we also express the deep wish that the Pir-o-Murshid Council can become part of a solution.

In a way we find ourselves in the same situation as under the previous leadership. With the deep love and respect we feel for Murshid Hidayat and Murshid Karimbakhsh, also then there was a wide-spread feeling that a lot of necessary work was not done. As a result we witnessed a considerable decline in our membership; also the quality of the Sufi work started to suffer in some countries.

We address this point with a heavy heart. Our organisation has gone through a difficult phase. The last thing we want is more pain and distress. We would also like to emphasise that this is not about persons. We deeply appreciate the dedication and work of both Murshida Nuria and Murshid Nawab. This is rather a question as to whether a dual leadership can really be effective. We have serious doubts if -irrespective of the qualities of the leaders involved- any type of collective leadership would work. It is for that reason that we would like to talk about the urgent matter of returning to a single leadership. We pray for Guidance and are hoping for a fruitful dialogue.

With loving greetings and in deep gratitude for the work done by Murshida Nuria and Murshid Nawab,

Shakti Genn
Ulma Moerenburg
Amir Smits
Johara Steingröver
Zebunnisa Voestermans
3. Murshida Nuria Sabato's resignation letter
4. 2018.08.07 response of the leadership to Murshida Nuria Sabato’s resignation.
5a. International Committee Zoom meeting Agenda
5b. International Committee Zoom 2018.07.14 meeting Screen Shot (composite) Participant list L-R:

Jelaluddin Sill, Rani McLaughlin, Nawab Pasnak
David Murray, Hamida Verlinden, Amim Betancur,
unidentified, Zebunnisa Voestermans, Sakya van Male,
unidentified, unidentified, unidentified
6. 2018.07.20 Murshid Nawab recognized as the single leader and Pir of the Movement.
7. “A 1977 Sufi Declaration” of the Edmonton Sufis
8. Minutes from the video conference call with ISM national representatives. 2018.08.25
Please scroll document. There are 7 pages.


2018 SMIC Financial Statement
A Summary of the Sufi In The World Retreat
(Loon Lake, BC, June 17 - 22, 2018)
A Summary of the Walking The Path Retreat
(The Crossing At Ghost River Lodge, August 21 - 24, 2017).
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Addendum to treasurer's report

Summary of Income and Expenses for the Pearls From The Ocean Unseen retreat.
Submitted by Kuan Yin Pujos-Michel 2018.09.13

Revenue: $3,370.00
Donation. 200.00 - From Taliah Kim Washington (Australia)
Total Rev: $3,570.00

Expenses: $150.00 - Insurance
74.48 - Office supplies
22.00 - Flowers
200.00 - given to Nirtan and Shams for gas/travel money
Final Invoice. $3,032.23 +$50.00 overage paid to SMIC. Total $3,082.23
Total Expenses: $3,478.71

Balance on hand. $91.29
Centre Reports


Leader: Kuan Yin Cindy Pujos-Michel
This is a brief overview of our Banff Sufi Centre over the past year -let's say from last August 2017 - to this August 2018.

As you will remember our Banff group hosted a National Sufi Movement in Canada Retreat at the Crossing at Ghost River last year, August, 2017. The retreat was called 'Walking the Path' and there was a fairly nice turnout of our Canadian Sufis plus Murshida Nuria Sabato, KarimaGita Erickson-Harper (now Gemma) and Maria Formolo from The Sufi Movement U.S. We had 29 full overnight guests plus 4 other day guests. The retreat was held from August 21 - 24, 2017 - 4 nights, 5 days. It was a wonderful retreat - so much so we couldn't resist holding another shorter version this year August 30 and 31, 2018. More about that later......

After coming back from The Crossing in August 2017, We felt inspired to create another smaller retreat in October at The Buffalo Nations Museum here in Banff. The name of this retreat was, The Journey from Love to Love and the theme was an exploration of the Inayat- Khan family. This was a fairly small 1 day retreat of 13 participants - all Alberta Sufis. David, Qahira, Azima and myself lead the retreat.

We hosted a Christmas Party in December of 12 Sufis, mainly from Calgary, Banff and Canmore. A wonderful time was had by all as we heralded in the holy season and the approaching New Year.

In early January I began again to hold weekly Sufi Reading classes. Tuesday afternoons, 1:30 -3/4:00pm. We took as our subject matter the book written by Murshid Hidayat, The Inner School. We read the entire book to each other finishing it in late June. We then began our new and current project, reading and practicing from a small booklet of 20 pages called A Practice Called Shaghal, extracts from the Githas, Sangathas and Sangithas.

Last week our Banff group hosted our 2nd Sufi Retreat again at The Crossing at Ghost River. Our theme for this retreat was: Pearls from the Ocean Unseen. An absolutely lovely and inspirational Retreat, August 30 and 31, 2018. We were 16 Sufis, mostly from Alberta except for our Beloved Nirtan from Victoria and Taliah Kim Washington from Brisbane Australia. David Murray was again with us and presented a beautiful Universal Worship on day 2. Nirtan gave us a very informative and history filled talk on Baroda, India, the birthplace of Inayat Khan. It showed us the actual 'birthing room' in the family home where Inayat Khan was born. Very interesting and in the true authentic voice of a historian in our Sufi family.

I would imagine that things will quiet down a bit now. We will continue on with our Shaghal booklet and look forward to visiting back and forth with our Calgary Sufi sisters. We will hold our weekly readings every Tuesday at 1:30 - 3:30/4:00pm.

All in all, it was a very busy year for us all as we continue our journey from love to love.

Kuan Yin Pujos-Michel
Banff Sufi Centre

Acceptance of the Banff Centre Report

Moved by ___, seconded by ___


Leader: David Murray

September 11, 2018

We hold weekly Sufi Studies evenings on Tuesdays at my office where I have a comfortable sitting area. The evenings are quietly advertised by word of mouth. As a result, attendance is small but steady. The meetings are casual and there are friendly discussions and tea before we start the readings and practices. We may start with the element breaths followed by a wasifa. I often choose readings that reflect the discussions. There is great interest in the history of sufism and sufi philosophy, so this may determine the selection of readings. The evening ends with the singing zikar. Newcomers are always welcomed.

Acceptance of the Edmonton Centre Report

Moved by ___, seconded by ___


Leaders: Sharda Murray-Kieken and Akbar Lody Kieken

There’s really nothing to report except perhaps that we consider ourselves a brotherhood/sisterhood centre for sufis of all stripes.

Acceptance of the Qualicum Beach Centre Report

Moved by ___, seconded by ___


Leaders: Fazalunissa Carole Harmon and Jelaluddin Gary Sill

The Vancouver Sufi Centre has been active since last year's report.

A series of eight Vancouver Sufi Nights were held from late January to the end of March 2017. Our weekly evenings generally follow a program of Invocation, readings from Murshid’s writings, practices (breathing, concentration, shagal and sama..) then a Singing Wazifa or the Singing Zikar.

This year Fazalunissa and Jelaluddin organized a national retreat at Loon Lake, BC. Invited guests included, Murshida Rani McLaughlin, Gemma Terri Erickson and Murshida Nuria Sabato.

On September 12, we remembered the passing of our dear older Sufi brother and friend on the path, Murshid Hidayat. We sent out an email to all Sufis on the SMIC eMail list which appears below and which included this link to Hidayat's Invocation Opus 8. .

We begin a Fall series of Vancouver Sufi Nights starting on October 10 with an "Introduction to Sufi Thought and Practice" evening. There is a great spirit in our small centre; we have deep discussions. Only one attendee is an initiated mureed, The others are people with deep experience in a variety of spiritual traditions who like the feeling of our group and it’s open atmosphere.

Jelaluddin maintains the SMIC website and acts as the organization’s secretary. Fazalunissa continues in her role of treasurer. We feel that the Sufi work in Canada is being expressed beyond our local centres, beyond Canada, and is hopefully an important contribution to the Sufi Message and a helpful voice in the international organization's transition to new leadership.

Sending much love and deep gratitude for our connections with so many Sufi hearts,

Fazalunissa and Jelaluddin
Vancouver Sufi Centre

Acceptance of the Vancouver Centre Report

Moved by ___, seconded by ___


Leader: Nirtan Carol Ann Sokoloff

Sufi activities in Victoria include a monthly meeting of Dance and Sufi Thought which has taken place the first Tuesday of the month at the Quaker Meeting House since approximately 1991. During this year Victoria welcomed Majida Medwyn who hosted study and practise circles on the theme of love, harmony and beauty.

In January, centre leader Nirtan Sokoloff was privileged to travel to Baroda (Vadodara) India, to the birthplace of POM Inayat Khan, where she attended a concert at the former Gayan Shala (now the University of Baroda performing arts college) in honour of both Inayat Khan, a former professor there and his grandfather, its founder, Maula Baksh. Along with Hidayat’s daughter Inayat, now living near Victoria and Sufi leaders from Germany and South Africa, we celebrated the Urs of Inayat Khan with a wonderful retreat as well as Universal Worship and Zikar at the Maula Baksh house. By sharing experiences on Facebook with photos and videos, many people were introduced to Sufi thought.

In August our Victoria centre was delighted to welcome Petra-Beate Schildbach of Berlin, who led the Baroda retreat. A Universal Worship and house blessing took place with Nirtan, Inayat and Petra-Beate serving as cherags, attended by both longtime and recent Sufi friends.

The Victoria centre continues to maintain a lending library of Sufi volumes.

Acceptance of the Vancouver Centre Report

Moved by ___, seconded by ___
New Business
A video conference General Meeting to be held immediately after the AGM to discuss new business.
Date of Next AGM
Moved by Fazalunissa that the next AGM be held Monday, September 16, 2019. Seconded by Akbar. Passed.
Motion To Adjourn
Moved by Fazalunissa to adjourn. Passed.

Meeting ended at 10:14AM PDT, 11:14PM MDT
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