NHT's Writing Desk

 Hazrat Inayat Khan -
a voice from the past speaks to our future

One hundred years before the awakening of human consciousness became today's catch phrase, Inayat Khan was charged by his destiny with the duty
of preparing the way … 

Born into a musical and mystical family, in his own right Inayat became a ‘brilliant’ musician of his time, but he was interested in something other than recognition, accomplishments, and accolades for talent ... 
His had been a childhood filled with inter religious experiences, and his heart longed to soar spiritual heights to strengthen his perception...

By way of visions and dreams Spirit led our hero to the Chisti order of Sufi who find the highest Divine inspiration in music and whose adherence to and emphasis on love, tolerance, and openness seems to be echoed by Francis's troupe ...

Actively Inayat searched for his teacher (murshid), but  heard the same thing from every one he met:"i'm not the one you're looking for." Eventually teacher and student did meet, and magic happened, and before passing away, the teacher laid his hands on the student's head and said, "Fare forth into the world, my child, Hazrat Inayat Khan, and harmonize the East and West with the harmony of thy music. Spread the wisdom of Sufism abroad, for to this end art thou gifted by God.”

As in keeping with Inayat’s view and sensibilities, rather than to exalt the man, i offer the man’s own words instead -

Hazrat Inayat Khan 
on the imagined separations between religions:  
“Among creeds and castes, all wars and differences
between nations have arisen
from narrowness and slowness of perception. 
Still, were a Buddhist to come to me saying,
‘Our Lord Buddha was the only teacher,’
I would answer, ‘Verily;’ 
and if a Hindu cried to me that Krishna is the ideal master
I would say, ‘You speak rightly.’ 
And if a Christian should declare that Christ is the highest of all,
I would reply, ‘Undoubtedly,’ 
for it is the nature of human beings to consider as best
that which they can idealize best. 
But if anyone came to me saying, ‘I cannot believe in all this talk,
for I can only recognize the same truth in each one of these,’
I would say, ‘You, my friend, are the one who really knows,
for you have understood and unveiled
the real secret of God’s Nature.’ 
As Rumi says, ‘The Sufi takes the meat,
leaving the bones for others to fight over.’”

Sufism embodies Islamic esoterics yet the origin of Sufism is in contention.  Traditionalists believe it began in the first centuries after the Prophet Mohammad.  There is another belief, however, that traces pre-Islamic roots of Sufism back to the Essenes, the Pythagorean orders, and the mystery schools of the Egyptians and Zoroastrians, and that it is these roots which became known singularly as Islamic Sufism.

Personally i find Sufism's origins a moot point, and even Inayat himself wrote:  "Every age of the world has seen awakened souls, and as it is impossible to limit wisdom to any one period or place, so it is impossible to date the origin of Sufism." 

10 Foundational Principles of Universal Sufism 
as set forth by Hazrat Inayat Khan

1. There is One God, the Eternal, the Only Being; None exists save He

2. There is One Master, the Guiding Spirit of all souls, Who constantly leads all followers toward the Light

3. There is One Holy Book, the Sacred Manuscript of Nature, the only Scripture that can
                enlighten the reader

4. There is One Religion, the unswerving progress in the right direction toward the Ideal,
              which fulfills the life's purpose of every soul

5. There is One Law, the Law of Reciprocity, which can be observed by a selfless conscience,
              together with a sense of awakened justice

6. There is One Brotherhood, the human brotherhood which unites the children of earth indiscriminately
              in the fatherhood of God

7. There is One Moral, the Love which springs forth from self-denial and blooms in deeds of beneficence

8. There is One Object of Praise, the Beauty which uplifts the heart of its worshiper through all aspects
              from the seen to the unseen

9. There is One Truth, the true knowledge of our being, within and without, which is the essence of Wisdom

10. There is One Path, the annihilation of the false ego in the real, which raises the mortal to immortality,
              in which resides all perfection 

For more information, click on links below:

Sufi Order International of North America 

Inayat Khan's bio                 Vilayat Khan's bio                      Zia Khan's bio             

The Abode -   Sufi retreat in the Berkshires, just inside NY state        
PirZIa -   the website of Inayat's grandson 

Seven Pillars House of Wisdom - founded by Zia


rare footage and recording of Hazrat Inayat Khan                     Through his grandson Inayat still speaks to us ...