The Teaching of Hazrat Inayat Khan      

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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 Attraction of the Divine Being

Duality in Nature




When speaking of the world of the unseen and who can know this unseen world, I will say that it can be known by God and by the God-conscious at the time when he is God-conscious. One part of the Unseen Being is unconscious. That part does not know whether we are in sorrow, in trouble, in happiness. The other part, the conscious part, is so conscious that all our affairs, all our troubles, all our sadness and our happiness is much better known to Him than to ourselves. One part is so far away that there is no way of letting our cry reach Him, and one part is experiencing through us all the joy, all the affairs, all the sadness of the world.

With regard to the God-conscious, it is God Who discloses and hides knowledge. If He discloses it, it is His merit, because it is by His favor. If it is hidden, it is our fault, that we do not see it. It is always there. In this, there is idealization also.

When Jacob had lost his son Joseph, for many years he did not know where his son was, and wept for him, until his disciples asked him saying, "You are a prophet. You see the unseen, and yet you are sad for your son and you do not know where he is."

To say,"I know the future," is the work of a fortuneteller. It is not the work of a mystic. At one time you may know the future, and may tell another person. Another time that person may be depending upon your word and you do not know the future. To know and to say nothing is the work of the mystic. To know and to help. To say to another, "Take care. There is a pit." But it is better to say, "Take care because there is a pit," than to say, "Take care, I see you falling." Even that knowledge it is better to hide.

Therefore, if you see anything, it should be told to the Murshid, where there is a chance for its correction and interpretation. It should not be told to others.

Q: Is God conscious at the same time of the resting state and the active state, or is He conscious of them alternatively, like a person waking and sleeping? And is someone who is God-conscious conscious of both states at once?

That active part of the Consciousness that has produced the whole manifestation cannot be compared to the Eternal Consciousness, the Ahadiat. It is so small a part that there is no comparison at all. The active part is like the scenery placed before a curtain, which is the blank part. The curtain is always there. The scenery varies. Every person who attains to God-consciousness is conscious of the inactive part. But this consciousness is very slight. All the consciousness is in the manifestation. When he becomes fully conscious of the unconscious state, this is miraj, the highest state, Sidratu'l-Muntaha, which Muhammad experienced, as is told in the Qur'an.

It is only in entering into this state and in coming out of it that such a one is conscious of it. It is the state of very deep sleep, which we all experience unconsciously. When someone has attained to God-consciousness, he experiences all the activity of the world. He experiences everything as the self of each being. If an elephant comes before him, he is the elephant. Whatever comes before him, he is. When the consciousness of the external self is gone, then whatever appears before him is his self.

I know a Madzhub in Baroda, who was walking in the street at night, and a policeman, who was watching the street, said to him, "Who are you? Are you a thief?" The Madzhub said, "Yes, I am a thief." The policeman took him to the police station and there the Madzhub spent the night, enjoying his experiences. In the morning the officer came and said to the policeman, "This is a Madzhub whom you have arrested, not a thief." The policeman said, "He said himself that he is a thief." When the officer spoke with him, he recognized him as a Madzhub, and he set him free.

When he was asked, "Are you a thief," he said, "Yes," because whatever name or form comes before the consciousness of one who is lost in the Whole Being, he realizes as his self. This is the highest reach of mystical attainment. When the voice of God spoke with Moses or Muhammad and when the voice of God speaks with a person, what is the voice of God that speaks? The voice of God is the consciousness of the Whole Being that speaks to him who is God-conscious. God has no voice with which to speak to man, and therefore He speaks to those who are not able to hold communion with Him by the voice of him who is in communion with God. Such a one at that time is not conscious at all of his external self.

When Muhammad was in that state the horse could not carry him and the camel could scarcely carry him with difficulty. When a person is dead, the body at once becomes very heavy, because the life, the consciousness, that lifts it, is not there. His consciousness had quite left his body and therefore it became very heavy.

Once, when Muhammad was in this state, his wife, Bibi Ayesha, came into the room in which he was, and he asked her who she was. She said, "I am Ayesha." He said, "I am Ayesha. " She thought that the Prophet never joked, and she said, "I am Ayesha, daughter of so-and-so," naming herself, in the Arabic manner "daughter of so-and-so." He said, "I am Ayesha, daughter of so-and-so." She continued to name herself as the daughter of so-and-so, son of such a one, son of such a one, and at every name she spoke, he said, "I am such a one, and such a one." He was moved at that time into the consciousness of the Unlimited Being, the Consciousness of all who live, and all who have been.

That One Being which lies beyond all things we have called God, and we have idealized as God. We say Allah-ho-akbar, God is great. Thou art great. Al hamdu l'illah. All praise be to God, glory to God. The religious person says, "We must worship God, we must pray to Him," but can give no reason for his blind belief. The worldly person says, "Why should I worship what I neither see nor hear nor touch nor perceive by any sense?" The religious person's blind belief will one day be lost. It lasts just so long as his hope lasts. When that is gone, his belief is gone also.

How can we attain to knowledge of God and why do we not know Him? Because, from morning till night, we are busy in the external world, and when night comes, we are tired and only wish to sleep. If we can close ourselves to the outer world, we shall see the inner world. If we can close our outward senses, our mind will turn inward. We see through the eyes, but it is not the eyes that see. The mind sees through the eyes. And the consciousness sees through the mind.

The consciousness is all the time busy looking outward. If the eyes can be closed and the mind held quiet, the consciousness will turn inward and will see itself. It will see that God Who is within itself. It will realize: "I am not that external self, but this." It will turn to God. The feeling, "I am lonely, I am miserable," will disappear. It will realize that it is never alone. It will realize that God from Whom it is not separated, but Who is its own being.

Coming now to the question whether God is satisfied. God in one condition is experiencing the consciousness alone. In that condition He is so happy that nothing can compare with the happiness He experiences. This is called Vahdat. A very small part of the Divine Being causes the activity of the world, so that God rests apart, while His activity produces the universe. He has no weariness and no activity. To us all this world is very important. To Him it is not important. And even to us, when we have realized, it is not important at all.

Why is that which manifests always greater than that which is manifested? The root of the rose tree produces many thousands of roses. They blossom and fade, but the root remains. The root is called greater, but if it had not produced the roses it could not be called great. That from which all manifestation comes, is greater than the manifestation, but if it were not for all the universe, it could not be called great, the Allah-ho-akbar.

The Attraction of the Divine Being

In the Bible, in the Qu'ran, in all the religious scriptures, we read that there is an attraction by which the Divine Being draws all creatures to Himself. This is in two ways. The chosen ones of God are drawn towards God during their life, consciously. And, for every being comes its destruction, when it is destroyed, and is lost. Everything in the world is fani, that is, awaiting annihilation. For every rock, every tree, every being that we see the day will come when it is destroyed.

Our body will not remain with us. Each element in it will be attracted to the like element, the fire to the fire, the water to the water, the earth to the earth. When the body is destroyed, the mind remains. In the mind also the elements are, though we cannot see them. They are in the vibrations. Anger brings heat, which makes the eyes red and all the body hot. Peace comes, the water element. The elements in the vibrations also are drawn each to its own element. If anything remains it is the soul, the nur, the light of God. Everything in the world wishes to live. No-one wishes to die. And if someone, under the influence of some sorrow says, "It would be better if I were dead," when the spell is passed, if he is asked, "Do you wish to die now," he will say, "No."

We must see what in us is fani, to be annihilated, and what is baqi, life, what will remain with us and what will not. We realize as our self that which dies, that which is not ours, and therefore we are afraid of death. Our coat will not remain with us. It is not ours. Therefore Christ said, "If a man sue you for your coat, give him your cloak also." Because neither is yours. The coat belonged to the sheep first and it will pass from us, etc. We see that we are always attracted to our like, to someone who is from our country, of our race, from our school. God is that which will never die. His nature is life. Our true affinity is with Him. He is our real friend.

Duality in Nature

All philosophies have recognized the duality in nature. However much we may differ on the surface as to principles and opinions, those who go below the surface, the divers for truth, have always found the same things. The Vedanta calls the two forces purusha and prakriti, the creator and the created, the creative and the responsive forces, by which the whole manifestation has been made. In the religious language it is called Shiva and Parvati. In the Hindu inscriptions and books you can see the picture of Shiva, with two faces, a man's face and a woman's face, showing the creative force and the responsive force that Shiva possessed. There are many other pictures in these inscriptions, pictures such as that of an animal's body with a man's head, of which the meaning is that man's body is animal; it is his head that is man.

And why? Because of the senses, the eyes, the ears, all the senses by which man perceives. The animal also has ears, but he cannot understand the language that he hears. The animal has eyes, but it cannot understand what it sees. In those times there were few who could read and write. The Prophets themselves could not read and write. They had not diplomas from universities. For that knowledge no study is needed. It is always open. Therefore the philosophers were obliged to express their meaning by art, by engraving pictures upon the stone. The greater part of the Buddhistic philosophy has been lost. The four most important books of Buddha were stolen and have never been recovered. The religion remains, with all its beauty. But that from which it had come cannot now be known.

Leaving the religions aside, and coming to the scientific part, I will explain how two have come from one. All has come, not from the square, not from the triangle, but from the dot. The line has come from the dot. You cannot measure the dot. You may say: "If the dot were very large, perhaps we might measure it." You cannot measure it unless you make a cross, a line this way and that way. The line has two poles, it can be measured. When the dot moves, it becomes a line, it becomes two. In this way everything has come from one. First there was one eye. The two eyes have come from one eye. First there was one ear. The two ears have come from one ear. The two nostrils have come from one and the two lips from one.

If you look attentively at the spark of fire, you will see that it throws out a ray on one side, and at once a ray comes out on the other side. Then two other rays are thrown out between these and this forms a cross. Then two more come out and this forms the star, from which all creation has come. The two poles of the spark form the moon. The star and the moon together are the two forces that have made the whole universe. It is this that our Sufi emblem shows, the star with the moon. In our face the eyes and the nose are the star, the lips the moon.

As soon as there is manifestation there are these two forces. The forward swing of the pendulum has its backward swing. The forward swing comes with more strength, the backward swing is finer. These two forces are everywhere and in each thing there are both forces. We see these two forces everywhere. The sky is creative, the earth is responsive. Fire is creative, water is responsive. Although man and woman are typical of these two forces, yet in every man there is a female element, in every woman there is a male element. On every tree there are male and female leaves, male and female flowers, male and female fruits. If there are two kernels in the shell of an almond, we see that one has formed the other from itself. This is why it is said that Eve was formed from Adam's rib.

This is the secret of all harmony in life, the harmony of the creative and responsive forces. In life, we meet some people who are creative. Then, if we do not respond, we have failed. We meet some people who are responsive. Then, if we do not create, we have not performed our part. If there are two creative together, it is bad; if there are two responsive, it will not be good. Man and woman can harmonize, but if two women spend their life together, they will quarrel; if two men live together, they will fight. This is the reason of the present war. Two responsive together is bad, but two creative together is worse.

The manifestation is formed by duality, and God has His dual aspect. In one aspect He is untouched by experience, unaware of His creation, the Consciousness alone. This is why He is called Allah. In the other aspect He is all the manifestation. His creation is a very small matter to Him. If He be called God, the Good, it is a very beautiful name. He is good, there, above the world. Here on earth, at the other pole, the good becomes bad. What was good when it starts from there, here becomes bad.

A thief, for example, is moved either by love for himself, or by love for his children, his wife, by the wish to support them. The love comes from heaven. The impression of the earth says: "The easiest way is to take somebody's purse." Then more shadows of the earth say: "At Piccadilly Circus or near the Ritz are many people with well-filled pockets."

All the bad comes from the shadows of the earth. What comes from the other pole is only goodness. By withdrawing ourselves from the impressions of the world, by meditation and concentration, together with honesty, purity of life, we can reach to the other pole.

But this name (goodness) is not enough. We must rise above the good and evil, to that Unity in which we are all united. We are always quarreling about what is virtue, what is sin. God includes all, both poles, and embraces, is beyond all.

Why is Buddha always portrayed sitting with his legs folded? It shows unity, the going from duality to unity. The Moslem in his prayer folds one hand over the other. He thereby says: "from two I become one." The wise goes from the two to unity. He rises above good and evil, above virtue and sin, to the One.

In Christianity we read: "I and my Father are One." Duality, first the Father, the Creator, then the created. Trinity came afterwards. The third is hidden under the two. Those who understand music will understand that, if I beat quadruple time: 1,2,3,4, and then triple time: 6/8, (two groups of three beats covering the same length of time) the second and third beat of triple time are hidden under the second and fourth of the quadruple time: two beats of quadruple time are equivalent to three beats of triple time (6/8).

It may be thought that the idea of Trinity appeared first in the Christian religion. The conception of Trinity existed long before. It is found in the Hindu religion also.

In Islam, although the teaching is especially the unity of God, the two forces are recognized, Zat and Sifat. Zat is the creative force, Sifat the responsive force. To this is given the name Muhammad. Mah means great, Ahmad the knower, the mind. The great knower, Mahatma, is the same thing.

God bless you.