It is one of the four important Menhuan (saintly lineage) groups in China. The wordKhufiyyain Arabic means hidden or low. Since the believers advocate saying prayers in a low voice, Khufiyya is also called Low-prayer sect. It is said Khufiyya was disseminated respectively by Apāg Khwaja and Ma Laichi, important religious leaders in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). The sect has over 20 branches, which are scattered in the provinces of Northwest China and some areas of Yunnan Province and Sichuan Province.
The basic characteristic of this sect is that its believers not only faithfully believe in the basic beliefs and scriptures of Islam, but also emphasize the importance of religious cultivation. They are against ascetic and radical actions. They advocate cultivation in life with an active attitude. Their main practice is to think about doctrines and recite Zikr silently in the morning and evening and to do voluntary service at night. Usually the leader will secretly teach Zikr to Muslims. In reciting, a Muslim pronounces Allah hu as A----llah----hu. When pronouncing each syllable, he chooses three points on his body and diverts energy to them, and makes certain motions.
The mosque staff includes mainlyMurshid, Caliph and Murid. Murshidis the head of the sect and is calledTaiye. He is regarded as a saint and when he dies, his tomb will be a place of religious activities.Caliphis a senior member and is calledLaorenjia. Muridrefers to faithful believers. And there are alsoAkhundandManla(Mawla), who only practice Rukun in their mosques.