The Teaching of Hazrat Inayat Khan      

Volume

Sayings

Social Gathekas

Religious Gathekas

The Message Papers

The Healing Papers

Vol. 1, The Way of Illumination

Vol. 1, The Inner Life

Vol. 1, The Soul, Whence And Whither?

Vol. 1, The Purpose of Life

Vol. 2, The Mysticism of Sound and Music

Vol. 2, The Mysticism of Sound

Vol. 2, Cosmic Language

Vol. 2, The Power of the Word

Vol. 3, Education

Vol. 3, Life's Creative Forces: Rasa Shastra

Vol. 3, Character and Personality

Vol. 4, Healing And The Mind World

Vol. 4, Mental Purification

Vol. 4, The Mind-World

Vol. 5, A Sufi Message Of Spiritual Liberty

Vol. 5, Aqibat, Life After Death

Vol. 5, The Phenomenon of the Soul

Vol. 5, Love, Human and Divine

Vol. 5, Pearls from the Ocean Unseen

Vol. 5, Metaphysics, The Experience of the Soul Through the Different Planes of Existence

Vol. 6, The Alchemy of Happiness

Vol. 7, In an Eastern Rose Garden

Vol. 8, Health and Order of Body and Mind

Vol. 8, The Privilege of Being Human

Vol. 8a, Sufi Teachings

Vol. 9, The Unity of Religious Ideals

Vol. 10, Sufi Mysticism

Vol. 10, The Path of Initiation and Discipleship

Vol. 10, Sufi Poetry

Vol. 10, Art: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

Vol. 10, The Problem of the Day

Vol. 11, Philosophy

Vol. 11, Psychology

Vol. 11, Mysticism in Life

Vol. 12, The Vision of God and Man

Vol. 12, Confessions: Autobiographical Essays of Hazat Inayat Khan

Vol. 12, Four Plays

Vol. 13, Gathas

Vol. 14, The Smiling Forehead

By Date

THE SUPPLEMENTARY PAPERS

Heading

Sufism

The Purpose of Life

"Blessed are the Poor in Spirit"

"Blessed are They that Mourn"

Cause

Higher Attainment

Worship

The Prayerful Attitude

Prayer

Islam

The Effect of Deeds

Rhythms of Activity

Ways to Control Activity

Balance

The Seen and the Unseen

The Other Side of Death

The Alchemy of Happiness

Wisdom and Ignorance

Kaza and Kadr

The Philosophy of the Resurrection

The Murshid

Sub-Heading

-ALL-

Vol. 5, Pearls from the Ocean Unseen

Worship

There are three aspects of worship: the worship of God in heaven by those who understand Him as a separate being; the worship of God on earth, as a god or goddess, in the form of an idol, or of some being who is considered as an incarnation of God and who is worshipped by the multitudes; and the worship of the God within, the innermost self of our being. It is this aspect of God that is understood by the Sufis, the Vedantists, and the great teachers such as Christ and Mohammed.

In the beginning, the great masters taught the worship of some concrete object to those who could not understand any higher ideal of worship, in order to lead them up to the God-ideal, that they might finally come to know the God within.

There are some people who have realized that the innermost self is God, and who say, "Why should we approach God in forms of worship?" believing themselves to be self-sufficient. This self-knowledge can lead man either astray or towards perfection. It seldom leads him to perfection, but it frequently leads him astray, for although man is unlimited in the unseen world, in the outer world he is a very limited being. He is dependent on the whole of creation around him, and is in every way dependent on his surroundings. At one end of the pole he is unlimited and self-sufficient; at the other end of the pole he is limited and dependent. It is therefore a great mistake for a man to claim self-sufficiency.

In Muslim terms these states are called Allah and Bandeh. The Allah state is the unlimited and self sufficient, and the Bandeh state is the limited and dependent.

As a man's ideal is, so is his state of evolution. The man who is only interested in himself is very narrow and limited, whereas the man who has expanded his interests to his family and surroundings is greater; while he who expands them still further to his nation is yet greater, and he who extends them to the world at large is the greatest. But in all these cases man is limited. It is the same with material ideals: one person may be content with a hundred pounds, while another may aspire to a million; in accordance with his ideal, so man becomes.

The highest ideal of man is to realize the unlimited, the immortal self within. There is no need for any higher ideal, for when man holds this ideal in his vision, he expands and becomes all he wants to be, and in time he attains to that peace which is the longing of every soul.

The worship of God expands the soul towards perfection.

This is illustrated in the words of Sa'di, who says,
"Praise be to Allah, whose worship is the means of drawing closer to Him, and in giving thanks to Whom is involved an increase of benefits.
Every breath which is inhaled prolongs life, and, when exhaled, quickens the body. Thus in every breath two blessings are contained, and for every blessing a separate thanksgiving is due."