The Social Construction of Lived Islam: A Case Study of Selected Shrines in Bangladesh

Researcher Name/Project Director/Author: Muhammad Rehan Masoom ,Registration Number: 100401180004, Session: 2017-2018

Publish Status:  Completed

Research For:  CHSR

Date:  28-May-2024

Year:  2024

Supervisor Name/Project Supervisor:  A I Mahbub Uddin Ahmed, PhD Supernumerary Professor Department of Sociology University of Dhaka


This thesis is about the religious experiences embraced by the pilgrims of the Muslim shrines of Bangladesh and aims to contribute to the literature on the sociology of religion. The present quantitative study intends to test and expound Max Weber's notion of religious action. By using a structured questionnaire, the study surveyed 2769 pilgrims while they were at the shrines. These pilgrims usually visited the sites once or twice a week and spent a substantial amount of time seeking help with a range of social and psychological needs. The study made a comparative analysis of the primary data to measure the differences in religious experiences by gender, marital status, age, education, and occupation. The study interpreted how lived Islam is socially constructed at Bangladesh's Sufi Shrines by estimating the exploratory factor analysis and developing a structured equation model. It is found that five factors, such as (1) Shrine Commemoration, (2) Sufi Veneration, (3) Shrine as Wasila, (4) Shrine Veneration, and (5) Rituals Observed can explain the religiousness of the pilgrim. These findings can contribute to a grounded understanding of how religion is embedded in and generated by a specific cultural context.

Keywords: Muslim Shrines, Social Constructionism, Max Weber, Social Survey, Structured Equation Modelling, Bangladesh