Feb 21, 2013

A measurement of Islamic religiousness among Pakistani migrants in Spain: analysis of their sectarian affiliations

Ana Ballesteros , Maria Jesus Martin Lopez, PhD; Jose Manuel Martinez Garcia, PhD

ICSA Conference Talk Abstract
Trieste, Italy, July 4–6, 2013 

The study we present here is the result of a PhD research on Islamic sectarianism in Pakistan. The fieldwork was done on the Pakistani community in Spain, mainly settled in Barcelona. Extensive qualitative interviews were undertaken with leaders of the different religious communities as well as its members, whereas quantitative data was provided through the analysis of questionnaires based on the Psychological Measure of Islamic Religiousness (H. Abu Raiya, K.I. Pargament, A. Mahoney & C. Stein, 2008), where some scales were used, and some not (the conversion scale was not included, considering we were interested in Pakistani Muslims not converts): items of Islamic religious dimension, Islamic wellbeing, purpose of life, satisfaction with life, religious struggle and fundamentalism were added, plus new questions focused on belonging to different sects, cults, and denominations, and their attitudes towards their in-group and out-group.

The main purpose was to find out how Pakistani Muslims live their religion, a deeper understanding of Islamic religiousness, and how the migration experience affects them. The biggest difficulty was to convince them to fill in a questionnaire, considering the closeness of the community, their distrust for the purposes of the research, or the fact that many of them are illiterate and might find the questions too hard to answer. For that reason, we have relied more on the qualitative analysis of the discourses of the leaders and members of the different religious groups: among the Sunnis, Deobandis: Tablighi Jama’at; Barelvis: Minhaj ul-Quran, Dawat-ul Islam; Ahl-e Hadith; Jamaat-e Islami; Sufis; Ahmadiyya and Shias.