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Owen Wright, Christian Poché and Amnon Shiloah

dervishes to attain union with God. (The term still designates certain types of folk dances.) In their attack against the Sufi mystical dance, the Islamic jurists likened it to non-Islamic genres such as the ‘Golden Calf’ dance or Christian dances, thus rendering it heretical ( bid‘a ). Religious prohibitions extended to other types of popular entertainment, with or without dance. The legists condemned pre-Islamic rituals which were enlivened with impressive music, such as the celebration of now-rūz (the ancient Persian New Year) and the different Nile festivals in