Why did the first Safavid Shia become Shia?

Why did the first Safavid Shia become Shia?


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I'm currently reading the history of Safavid Iran (by Roger Savory) which was a Shia ruling. The eponym of Safavid is Safi-ad-din Ardabili that was a Sunni. We can be sure that his grandson Khvajeh Ali Safavi was Shia.

I want to ask the reason for his convert to Shiism and the age at which he converted.


In the source cited in the Wikipedia article about Khvajeh Ali Safavi, it says:

Much about the early Safavid order remains unclear. One point of uncertainty is the precise nature of their religious beliefs. Originally, they seem to have harbored Sunni convictions, but under Ḵᵛāja ʿAli they are said to have gravitated toward Shiʿism under the influence of their main supporters-Turkmen tribes who adhered to a popular brand of Shiʿism. Originating as it did in a frontier region rife with primordial beliefs mixing cabbalistic and millenarian elements, their belief system had long borne little relation to orthodox Twelver Shiʿism.

So to the extent that Khvajeh Ali Safavi's beliefs can really be described as Shia, it was due to Turkmen influence.


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