The formation of the Sufi movement in Islam arose after the death of Muhammad as a reaction to the lack of personal connectivity to Allah that many followers experienced. These constituents of Islam believed in its" sacred texts, but felt that orthodox Islam was spiritually oppressive. Rather then perceive their existence as a product of Allah's want to be worshipped, pioneering Sufis desired to find divine love through a direct and personal link. This view contrasts with the traditional Islamic belief that the correct way to appease and relate to Allah is to submit to him through worship, rather then engage spiritual enlightenment to establish a dialogue. .
In stating "I am the creative truth", Hallaj summarized the fundamental beliefs of Sufism. As this quote's significance is the summation of the Sufi's problems with Islam, Hallaj was executed by Islamic authorities for this statement. It is likely that Islamic followers erred in understanding the context of Hallaj's declaration, believing that he meant that he was Allah himself. My understanding of this quote is that Allah is the ultimate definition of reality and by spiritually connecting to Him one can interpret reality in the way that He can. If one takes the word creative to mean "expressive" and truth to mean "reality", then it is not a stretch to imagine that Hallaj meant that he was an expression of God's reality; a far cry from interpreting his statement at surface value (I am God). If Hallaj interpreted reality, and reality is God, then Hallaj had an individual perspective on God; this going against the Islamic dogma that God is a divine master that must be submitted to. Rather then believing that the purpose of our creation was to worship Allah, Sufis feel that the reason for our creation is to know Allah. This belief that one must sojourn through whatever means necessary to a establish relationship with God is the cornerstone of Sufi thinking, and its central difference with Islamic thinking.