| The term "Sufi" derives from the Arabic word "suf" (meaning "wool") and was applied to Muslim ascetics and mystics because they wore garments made out of wool. Sufism represents a dimension of Islamic religious life that has frequently been viewed by Muslim theologians and lawyers with suspicion. The ecstatic state of the mystic can sometimes produce extreme behaviour or statements that on occasion appear to border on the blasphemous.
The cause of this is that the Sufis can sometimes feel so close to God that they lose a sense of their own self identity and feel themselves to be completely absorbed into God. This in fact is the goal of the Sufi. One starts with sharia (Islamic law), the exoteric or mundane practice of Islam and then is initiated into the mystical (esoteric path of a Tariqah (Sufi Order).