Sufi comics draw on spiritual tales
The Second edition of Comic Con India will be held at Dilli Haat from Feb 17-19, and book lovers will get a chance to check out exciting new books and comics. One of the key attractions this year are the Sufi Comics that already have a strong fan following on the Internet.
“It started as an experiment when we first posted an online edition of the Sufi comic strip,” reveals Mohammed Ali Vakil, the co-author of the book. He says, “My brother and I grew up in Dubai, and we attended a madrasa in the evenings. There stories and anecdotes from the holy Quran were narrated to us to teach us moral values and virtues like charity, honour and respect. For sometime we maintained a personal blog and shared these stories. Later, we made them into web comics and surprisingly got a lot of positive reviews for it. People who wanted to learn about the religion find it very useful. We did the art work and now we have already got offers to translate it into other international languages like German, Russian and French.”
The Bengaluru-based Vakil brothers are full-time property developers, but they find time to design and plan the comics. Co-author Mohammed Arif Vakil says, “These comics have excerpts from the Quran and we selected other popular stories and characters to reach out to a wider audience. The first book has 40 Sufi comic stories and it is also available in iPad and as web comics. The present comics are in black and white, but the next edition will be in colour. We have the coloured web edition also and it is amazing how word of mouth has already popularised the Sufi comics among readers.”
A lot of people are also intrigued by the idea of Sufi Comics that illustrate the spiritual truths in the teachings of Islam. Salman Mirza, a student at DU, feels it is a great idea. He says, “It is a good idea and I feel a lot of people will be interested in reading about the popular stories that tell us about the history and religious aspect of Islam. I have seen the web version of the Sufi comics and I found them really informative.”
Mohit Singh, a student at DSAC, also thinks that comic versions of religious stories are a great idea to promote moral values among children. He says, “I think Sufi comics are a good option for people who want to know more about Islamic culture. A lot of children as well as adults, who can’t understand or read the Quran, will find this simpler version an easier option to gain a better understanding of the basic tenets of the religion.”