The signature of happiness.

Pessimism is the negation of faith. Faith is the source of power, inner strength and happiness.

We do not know what is in store for us in the coming days or months. But, there is no cause to be dismayed or dejected. Let us hope for the best, and let us expect and trust that something good will come out in the coming days and months.

A Sufi mystic has an optimistic outlook. Optimism is born of positive thoughts, whereas pessimism is the result of negative thinking.

Hope is a great stimulus and an urge to creative living. It is, indeed, a force to be reckoned with. Hope, in a way, is a type of autosuggestion. What one hopes, that he gets.

Let me offer you my cordial greetings for a happy, bright and a prosperous coming  future. Let us move on hopefully with Faith as our armour, and, Hope as our lantern. It is true, that, our present day world is seething with faction and discontent. The present day world is divided into watertight compartments. There are ideological difference. There are cultural contrasts. There are invidious distinctions of caste, colour, religion and region. But, in spite of all this, the difficulties and the problems facing the modern man can by surmounted, provided we have the spirit of toleration and mutual adjustment.

It is a divided world dominated by the false notions of prestige. There are no common aims and no common ideals. It is a divided world because we have divided loyalties. The situation is explosive. Modern man is playing with match sticks. He is, in fact, sitting on the serpent’s pit.

In the interest of world peace, better life, better living and better business, the mutual suspicions should give place to mutual trust. Mutual rivalries, likewise, should be replaced by mutual co-operation. Our modern world is an interdependent world. It is characterized by the mosaic of different notions, norms, customs, cultures, manners, usages, religions and different lifestyles. The Sufi Mystics have a definite role to play. They should inspire, guide, and teach the people to face challenges and overcome problems besetting them. Human happiness should be their paramount consideration.

Any future  resolutions should for an example emphasize the need for the harmonious working of society, free from threats, whether they be cultural, political, economic or social. The Charter of Human Happiness should emphasize equality of opportunities, full employment, proper education, efficient health services, care for the handicapped and the disabled, social justice, respect for individual dignity, less preaching and more practice, less greed and more contentment, less selfishness and more sacrifice, less egoism and more altruism, less pride and more humbleness, less luxury and more simplicity and no hatred and all love.


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories: ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path of Mysticism). Alternatively, you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

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The Sufi mystic search for silence

Let me talk to you about a topic, which has a vital bearing on your everyday life. We are, to a great extent, bearing on our everyday life. We are, to a great extent, governed, not only by our thoughts, but also by the environment and atmosphere in which we live and work. Home atmosphere deeply affects an individual. Nobody can claim to be unaffected by his home atmosphere.

The neighborhood atmosphere is another dynamic force which moulds and shapes our life.

Besides our desires, our ambitions and our aspirations create and generate noise, which, for most of us, is difficult to resist. This type of noise created within, robs us of inner harmony, peace, and may I say, of happiness.

Thus, we have noise within and noise around. In fact, we are living in an Age of Noise. An individual finds it difficult to avoid noise.

The Industrial Age has also its share in creating noise. The modern inventions like the radio, the television, the cinema and the loudspeaker have further surcharged the atmosphere with noise.

No one can validly claim to be immune from the harmful effects of noise. Noise in the home is more harmful. It leads to a deterioration of health and mental vigour. Conflicts and quarrels between the members of the family are generally due to the noise in the home. Which creates tension. Those exposed to noise are more exposed to diseases, like ulcers, Fatigue and irritability are the other depressing effects of noise.

As opposed to noise, silence is conducive to harmony, peace, poise, solace, comfort, calmness and inner strength. The Sufi mystics have emphasized silence and tried to avoid noise.

The mystic zest for life is expressed in their search of silence, which they preach and practice. According to the mystics the one eager and anxious to evolve morally and to develop spiritually, must guard his tongue, which is more venomous and poisonous than a serpent. One should speak only when he must.

Tongue, indeed, creates most of the mischief of the world.

Like an arrow, which once shot cannot be brought back, likewise, a word once uttered, cannot be brought back.

To use tongue recklessly to become a prey of the serpent of the tongue. Reckless words, frivolous words and abusive words make a person, uttering them, a prisoner of the tongue.

There is a Japanese proverb, which says that:

“The tongue is but three inches long, yet it can kill a man six feet high.”

Wisdom lies in controlling tongue.

Uncontrolled tongue is the mark of the lack of self -control.

When speaking, we should keep a vigilant eye, on what we say, to whom we speak, what we speak, how to speak, when to speak and what we should speak when and where.

A man, having a developed mind, and possessing self-control, is marked out as one, who is man of a few words, but of manifold actions and deeds.

The Sufi Mystic warning against idle chatter, needless gossip, aimless talk and frivolous conversation, is undoubtedly, a reasonable code of conduct against waste of energy, which too much talking implies, and against loss of too much inner strength, which living in noise signifies.

There can be no doubt, that such an ideal human outlook and mystic search for inner peace, is more needed now than ever before.

A Sufi mystic is very cautious in his speech and in his choice of words. He speaks little, but he speaks well and speaks at an appropriate time and at a proper place, before persons whom he considers fit and otherwise deserving.

The speech of man, like the dress of a man, proclaims the man. As soon as the man utters a word, one can know his inner feeling and his likes and dislikes.  The words, uttered by a man, show whether the man is vain, or boastful, or thoughtful.

Aimless talk leads nowhere. It entails loss of time and waste of energy, which could have been better utilized in better pursuits and in some constructive work.

Thomas Carlyle emphatically lays down that:

This is such a serious world that we should never speak at all unless we have something to say.”

Silence implies rest of the mind. Silence deserves to be cultivated. It has its own inherent merits. It gives tranquility, peace physical and mental vigour, just like calmness to our nerves. It covers our folly. It keeps out secrets intact. It avoids deputes. It prevents many evils, like slander and backbiting.

According to Carlyle:

“Silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves together; that at length they may emerge, full-formed and majestic into the delights of life, which they are thenceforth to rule.”

There can be no doubt, that, judicious silence averts many troubles and tribulations. Heart induces us to speak.

Wisdom teaches us to be silent. Judicious silence is better than ostentatious piety.

The Sufi mystics treat unrestrained and indiscriminate talk as morally wrong and spiritually dangerous.

Silence prepares an individual for the spiritual life, having as its goal, the attainment of self-realization, leading to the union with God.

Self-realization is and arduous search.

Self cannot be realized by those, who want to realize it by knowledge, study, or by intelligence. Self is realized in silence. It can be realized, when mind is still and outer senses are clam and quiet. The voice of silence speaks and guides the individual keen on self-realization. For this, one has to do many things. Before closing his tongue, to be opened only when absolutely necessary, one has to exercise self-control, give up vice and get rid of negative thoughts. Moreover, one has to try to have a still mind. A distracted mind is a hindrance towards the attainment of inner peace and self-realization. One should be at peace within. Silence, thus, is an aid to the achievement of desired goal.

We can hear the voice of God only in silence. Needless talk is detrimental to spiritual development, and morally, it is unbecoming of an individual to talk and to speak without rhyme and reason.

To be silent implies to conceal and to hide one’s own imperfections, and to hear and to see and to observe the limitations and drawback of other people, with whom we may come in contact.

Silence is the safeguard of the fool and an ornament of the ignorant and untutored.

In time of stress, in time of trial, in time of suffering and in adverse circumstances, it is always better to be silent instead of groaning, moaning, complaining, shrieking and weeping. Instead of shrieks and curses, one should observe silence, in silence a solution can be found for the difficulties and hardships besetting an individual. In silence, one can gain strength enough to cope and to overcome the unfavourable circumstances surrounding an individual. #

One can draw strength from within and be courageous and bold to overcome evil and to encourage good.

The Corner of Silence is the dwelling place of the highest, the purest, the best and the choicest positive thoughts.

Silence is necessary for intuition and inspiration. Silence leads to concentration. Sufi Meditation is a way of regulated silence.

The four mystic commandments, namely talk less, eat less, sleep less and mix less with the people, show us the way to the life of bliss, where moderation is the rule and where excessive indulgence is an exception.

It has been said that safety lies in silence and danger lies in speech. But, occasions arise, when not to speak is moral guilt.

To be helped and to help may assume different forms. It may, at times, be informal and other times, it may be professional. Help may come in the shape of advice, suggestion, counsel and guidance. Sympathy is a type of help.  Empathy is a type of better and superior help. A doctor helps a patient by prescribing medicine. A teacher helps his pupil by imparting to him knowledge. A priest helps people by giving them a discourse. A spiritual guide helps his disciples by showing them the path, which leads to better life, and better living and which gives them the vision of harmony, beauty, truth and peace.

Life without guidance is, “A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury signifying nothing”.

With inner change and transformation, and individual is capable of understanding the real cause of tension and upheavals, with which he often suffers. Ultimately, he will come to realize, that, the fault is in himself that he talks recklessly, aimlessly and talks too much.

We have been given one tongue, so that, we may talk less. We have been given two ears, so that, we may hear more, and thus learn more.

Like the three monkeys, one should not speak evil, hear evil and see evil.

Control of the tongue is an expression of self-mastery. One cannot control his tongue without controlling his thoughts and thoughts cannot be controlled without self-control.

Our tongue invites most of the sins as compared to other parts of out body.

Telling a lie is one of them. Backbiting is another. Slander, perjury and false evidence are all sins, committed by our tongue.

We waste our energy in criticizing others. We should refrain and ignore things which do not concern us. Instead of criticizing others, we should try to concentrate upon our own foibles, faults and follies. Self-criticism is a better part of wisdom, but, criticism of others is the reflection of the debased nature inherent in man. Criticism may be constructive or destructive. It may be positive or negative. Destructive and negative criticism is induced by evil intention and is due to malice, envy, or enmity or it may be with intention of discouraging a person in his noble and loft pursuits. Whereas, constructive or positive criticism constitutes a piece of good advice, or a suggestion, aiming at the reformation of the individual.

In our social relations, it is not praiseworthy or wise to blame others. Our influence, knowledge and power should not be used to abuse or to blame others. But, on the contrary, it should be harnessed in the service of man, and to help and assist men

Talking about yourself will not secure respect or consideration for you. People are not interested in your health and hopes, ambitions and aspirations, tours and travels, exploits and erudition, in your fears and fancy and in your rise and fall, in your accomplishments and achievements and in your wrongs and worries.

To talk about oneself is an indication of the spirit of self-love, to which, the mystics cannot reconcile themselves. Self-praise is egoism enlarged.

Self-praise is not and can never be praiseworthy. Self-conceit prompts a man to be self-centered.

When we talk to others we should observe and ethical social norm and standard. We should not place the load of our own ills and troubles upon their shoulders. Instead of crushing others by our tale of suffering told in a sad tone, we should speak to them in a way, which may not be boring to them. Our words should be brief and our tone should be soft and melodious.

Conversation should be such as not to lose the lustre of words.

Word has power. It embodies human thought. Through words we express ourselves and our words convey our sentiments, our feelings our opinion and our judgement. The effect of the word, that we utter, persists. It exercises an influence for good or evil. If we utter a good word, its effect is good, and if we utter a word which injures others, then we are doing gross injustice. Such injuries are not healed, unlike the injuries of the bullet and the knife, which can be cured.

There are some people who act and behave as an Iago, appearing to be sincere and sympathetic, but, inwardly, using crooked ways and adopting tactics bordering on deception and treachery.

Life is a serious proposition. Our words are not like snowballs which melt and disappear. Every word, that we utter, may be a source of blessing or may serve as a curse. We are all architects. We build, brick by brick, with words, the edifice of life. Our words may serve as adornments or may serve as a pick-me-up to the person to whom they ae addressed.

Let us, then, not sow the seed of dissension, disunity and hatred by our words, but, use words, giving hope, happiness, encouragement, comfort and courage.

Words are capable of changing destinies. Coarse and vulgar conversation, whether it be idle gossip, hurtful strictures, prejudiced criticism, and boastful pedantry, is not and cannot be, fine building material to be used in the building of human lives.

There are people, who do not tolerate other people’s opinion. They insist on their own opinion and judgement. Intoleration thus leads to mutual bickering’s and bitterness, talk and discussions.

The mystics do not enter into the arena of arguments, discussion, recriminations, feuds and quarrels.

Knowledge versus love

Knowledge and love are two powerful forces, which exert great influence.

It is true, that, knowledge is power. But, knowledge without love, is like a flower without fragrance. It is live, which gives knowledge the desired cohesion, security and vitality.

Knowledge insists on speech, talk or conversation. In other words, knowledge is vocal. Whereas love is silent.

Knowledge lacks the skill to make the life of others good and beautiful. Love makes life a bouquet of multi-coloured flowers of devotion, suffering and patience.

Knowledge does not spare criticism. Its arrogance and austerity make it cold and cruel. On the other hand, love is calm and placid. Knowledge is assertive but love is submissive.

Knowledge seeks perfection. Love tolerates human foibles and the mistakes of omission and commission. Knowledge is indifferent. It shows no sympathy and pity. Love insists on service and devotion. Love, unlike knowledge, grows fragrant flowers in the path of life.

Knowledge has no forbearance, whereas, love is forbearing. With its cloak of generous disposition, it covers and hides the faults of others.

Knowledge is concerned with what ought to be. Love is content with what it is.

Knowledge divides. Love unites. Knowledge is selfish. Love is ever willing to make sacrifice. Unlike knowledge, success is not the watchword of love.

Love is silent and mute. In silence, it lends beauty to life. Its breath serves as an inspiration. Its language of silence gives hope, vigour, strength and courage. What-ever it touches, it adorns.

Its silent words are like drops of rain on the parched and dry land. Love seeks peace and serves as benediction. Love grows, develops and flourishes in silence.

Mysticism interprets silence in different ways. The subtle extensions of meaning and feeling, which the mystics do not hesitate to give to silence, do not admit of easy definition. They are to be experienced. They, in silence, carve, plan and prepare a path, which leads them to peace, progress and purification.

A Sufi mystic is a landscape in the universe. In silence, he puts lasting and imperishable things in the life of those, who come in contact with him.

A Sufi mystic is a watershed embodying the human efforts towards perfection. In silence, he has tried to know himself. In silence, he has discovered other profound truths. In silence, he has solved the riddle of life.

Types of Silence

Silence may be of different types. It may be classified

  1. Silence of tongue;
  2. Silence of heart;
  3. Silence of will;
  4. Silence of mind;
  5. Silence of soul;
  6. Silence of passions;
  7. Silence of desires; and
  8. Silence from wandering thoughts.

Silence of tongue is an ordinary type of silence.

Silence of heart means slow heartbeat prolonging life.

Silence of will implies “Thy will be done”.

Silence of mind is necessary for creative living.

Silence of soul implies loss of self.

Silence of passions confers tranquility.

Silence of desires is to gain self-control

Silence from wandering thoughts gives silence to heart, mind and will. It leads to internal harmony and promotes calmness and tranquility.

Foot Prints

Silence is self-discipline.

Silence creates inner harmony and gives inner strength.

Silence is conservation of energy.

Fewer wants, fewer desires and fewer ambitions result in less talk and greater silence.

Silence saves the soul from strain and stress.

 When a person earns the Grace of God, he becomes more and more quiet and silent.

When our outer senses are dumb, coolness comes in as a balm.

On the outer senses and the inner senses becoming silent and inactive, a person undergoes a feeling of peace, which is, in fact, a state of bliss.

The wrong use of tongue constitutes an acknowledgement of our imperfections, and limitation.

Restraint is better in moments of emotions.

To generate gloom and depression by talk is an encroachment upon the peace of others.

Words should come out from a mouth, as if, they are stars, appearing after sunset.

To search for dirt and mud in a mine is a waste of energy but to try to find gold, diamonds and other precious stones is, indeed, a commendable effort.

Discretion is not only a better part of valour, but also, a better part of conversation, howsoever eloquent it may be.

A man talks most about the things and person, which he likes best and loves best.

The talk of a man reveals the inner man.

The pursuit of spiritual life does not allow too much talking.

Spiritual life is like a mighty stream which flows best when not clogged. Likewise, spiritual life need not be tarnished by idle chatter, frivolous talk and empty gossip.

Conversation, rightly directed, is an acknowledgment of the Grace of God, and a distinct service to fellow-men. Unrestrained indulgence in talk is to give birth to many evils. Best talk is that, which promotes virtue, and which promotes the legitimate interests of the masses and the classes.

To know oneself is a difficult thing. But, to find faults in other people is quite an easy thing.

Avoid self-conceit.

Egoism belittles a man.

Selfishness degrades a man.

Greed humiliates a man.

Pride lowers a man.

Boast exposes a man

Vanity robs the lustre of man.

Thoughts reflect the character of man.

Low thoughts point to a shallow man.

Lofty thoughts refer to marks of altruism in man.

To seize opportunity in silence is luck.

To make the capricious chance favourable in silence is, no doubt and achievement.

One should not be an empty vessel, making much sound.

Morals are best cultivated in silence.

Better is to resist rather than yield to the temptation of talking when there is nothing to talk about.

Like you purse, take care of your words.

Words are precious pears and require to be guarded.

Guidelines

Silence is potent for the development of spiritual power. There can be no inner harmony and a balanced mind without the practice of judicious silence.

Hence it is necessary to find some time to practice silence every day. Look before you leap into the area of talk, arguments and discussions. Be discreet and courteous. The best time to observe silence is at the time of sunrise and sunset.

To banish all thoughts, all talk, all ambitions and all desires every day, for some time, constitutes the preparation for inner purification.

To give rest to mind is to gain power.

Ignore trifles of everyday life.

To show patience in an unpleasant situation is self-mastery.

To practice silence everyday, even for a short time, is a part of self-discipline and self-control.

To search in silence, the avenues of peace, is an effort towards self-realization and self-knowledge.

To close the lips-tight is to wait for the Divine mysteries to be revealed.

Find some time everyday for silence and be an empty vessel. Self-restraint, if accepted as a watchword, will save the tongue from uttering many undignified words.

Once seized by the desire to speak when there is nothing to speak, it is better to overcome the temptation, by reciting some poetry, some hymn, or better still, to engage oneself in prayer. Such words as “I repose my trust in Thee”, “I submit myself to the Will of God”,  “ I want to be saved from vanity, show and ostentatious display”, “I expect better things to happen”, “I have no fears and no cares and no tears”, etc. are powerful words, which can change the pattern of life.

It is always better to be occupied with one thought. The object that one wants to achieve and the vision of life that one wants to adopt, should occupy one’s attention, not leaving any time for idle talk.

It is wise to be silent, in matters which do not concern you.

It is wise decision not to assert from within, in order to avoid inner tension and conflict.

Practice of silence should be gradual and regular. Measured words and brief talk are effective and pleasing.

Silence is a reliable ally. It leads to the development of personality and willpower. It gives peace, poise, bliss, freedom and perfection.

The life of a mystic is a declaration of the sanctity of silence.

The Citadel of Silence is impregnable. When one wants to be saved from tears, fears and cares, or to be protected from envy, enmity and malice, or to serve as an example of modesty, humility or sincerity, or when it comes to self-knowledge and self-realization or when it comes to renouncing all alliance with the evil forces, and when it comes to entering into a truce with the inordinate passions and vile and vicious inclinations, all roads lead to the Citadel of Silence.


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories: ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path of Mysticism). Alternatively, you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

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The Spirit of Sufi Mystic Toleration

The Spirit of Toleration

As I write this blog we are going through a Lockdown due to the Coronavirus epidemic. Not only is the whole nation in Lockdown it appears the whole world is on Lockdown.

I have nothing to offer you except a tender heart, the pleasures of a simple and dedicated life, and above all, encouraging words of comfort and cheer.

To the Sufi mystics, the words of cheer and comfort are the words which give a better vision of life. And what are those words? They are, undoubtedly, Hope, Belief, Faith and Toleration.

Words, though appearing to be mute in the pages of book or on a piece of paper, yet, speak, Warn, guide, inspire and teach.  They exert powerful influence over every one of us.

A certain word serves as a balm. Another word serves as an arrow. It is through the medium of words, that, praise and abuse are conveyed. It is through words again, that we open our heart to others.  We choose words to convey our feelings,  our emotions, our sentiments, and our love, our hatred and our likes and our dislikes.

Some words appear as sharp as the edge of a sword. Some words appear as sweet as candy. Some words in spire us. Some words depress us. Some words encourage us. Some words discourage us.

A word once uttered does not return. Words are enough to injure the feelings of others. More men have been wounded, injured or bruised by words than by an explosion, fire, bomb, gun, or sword or powder.

According to the mystics, a person should speak only when he must. His tone should bear harmony. His voice should be gentle, and his words should bear harmony. His voice should be gentle, and his words should be few, giving a sense of direction.

The scriptures have influenced and are influencing the people to the extent, that they have, undoubtedly, changed human destiny. The Koran, the Bible, the Vedas, the Gita and the Ramayan contain words, and those words have moulded and shaped the life of myriads of people.

Why is it that people fight over mere words? Morbid words, couched in morbid tone, giving morbid feelings, make life morbid, dreary and dull, and hence, they are resented by other people. According to the advice of Kabir, a renowned mystic and a poet, one should speak such a word, which may please the heart and make him and others happy.

If somebody may abuse somebody, he will surely retaliate and quarrel.

Why is it so? The reply is simple and obvious. He feels injured by the words. It is his thought, which gives the word a bad connotation. If he does not feel, then he will be saved from resentment. And above all, it is because, he has not the right sense and the spirit of toleration.

The mystics have exhibited the spirit of toleration in their day-to-day life, in such a manner, and to such a degree, that, they came to be identified with mutual goodwill, mutual respect, mutual trust and mutual esteem. They have come down to us as an epitome of a noble life and as an epitaph of universal brotherhood and as a savior of mankind, protecting the rights of the people and their self-respect, giving them what they could give, and, accepting from them their love and affection. They ignored their foibles and follies, and tolerated their shabby and ignoble treatment.

Toleration has been so much preached and practiced by the mystics, that toleration has come to be looked upon as one of the planks in the mystic code of conduct.

Man seeks pleasure and avoids pain. Pleasure and pain are the two sides of a coin. They are relative terms. What may appear to be a pleasure for one, may be pain for another. Man does not realize the hidden good. He only sees the surface of the sea of life, not knowing, that, beneath the surface, there are oysters containing valuable bright pearls which may give added luster to his life.

Life is a complex phenomenon. Evil and good live side by side. After every winter comes the spring. After every pain comes the joy.

It is laid down in the Koran that:

“So, verily, with every difficulty there is relief.”

The procession of life does not call for posters, pamphlets and processions. It demands toleration, patience, perseverance, and the spirit of give and take.

The storm-tossed man has still much to learn. He has much to learn from his own experience, and, he has, undoubtedly, much to give, that which he has learnt from the ripe experience of others.

Our intellectual development has led us to accept without murmur or grudge the technique of acquiring knowledge through another vital source, which is the process of depending upon our experience for further acquisition of knowledge.

According to the Sufi mystics, there is harmony in the universe and whatever happens is good for man. Man does not realize this secret, and hence, he, in desperation, curses his fate and tries to resist the so-called suffering. He curses his fate and tries to resist the so called suffering which has seized him. He does not exhibit the spirit of toleration, with the result that he aggravates the suffering, catastrophe or misfortune, whatever it may be. To the mystics, this constitutes a wrong approach towards life. This distorted vision, the mystics hold, lands a man in a sea of worries and anxieties. Their poet Alexander pope suggest thus:   

“All nature is but art, unknown to thee;

All chance, direction which thou canst not see;

All discord, harmony not understood;

All partial evil, universal good;

And spite of pride, in erring season’s spite,

One truth is clear, whatever is,

Is right.”

Types of Toleration

Toleration may be free, or it may be compulsory. Free toleration is better than compulsory toleration. It is enduring and lasting. Free toleration comes from within. It has not outer force to sustain. It is dictated by conscience and sustained by the ethical standards that person has set before himself. Free toleration rises above prejudices, whims and fancies, and gives recognition without reservation to the rights of others. It makes allowance for human weakness.

Compulsory toleration, on the other hands, is under some duress of influence, or force, or under some pressure. The underlining idea of compulsory toleration is “what cannot be cured must be endured”. Compulsory toleration is dictated by fear, necessity or expediency or by some exigency. It is not voluntary, and not based on what one believes to be true. It implies lack of courage and want of determination.

Individual toleration is trait of character of the Sufi mystics. It derives its sanction from the old adage, “Live and let live.” It gives due recognition to human dignity and constitutes a source of happiness of others, and serves as a fountain of bliss, and acts as a guardian of the legitimate interests and rights of other people. It denounces parochialism, racialism, communalism, sectarianism, regionalism, clan conflict, and religious confrontation.

The point of View

The mystics hold and believe that suffering, in whatever shape and form it may appear, is meant for our training and discipline.

The beauty of character lies, indeed, in bearing the suffering, hardships, and trials and tribulations of life with patience and fortitude and without shrieks and curses.

To suffer and to be strong is not the lot of every man. It is reserved for those persons, who evince the spirit of toleration in their day-to-day life.

A tolerant person comes to assume, eventually, a creative personality, which is, without any doubt, a great gift of Gracious God

A creative personality derives solace and satisfaction from his disinterested service to the people. He shares their afflictions and troubles and participates in their joys. The spirit of toleration has taught him to be benevolent to his friends and kind to his foes and to understand and appreciate the intricacies and contradictions besetting the human life.

They hold and firmly assert and sincerely believe, that, to ignore the conflicts and contradictions and the weaknesses and the limitations, appearing in various guises and assuming different forms and shapes, is to disregard the realities of life and the complexities of man.

Types of people

There are different types of people. There are people, who do neither good nor evil. They are like stones. They belong, in fact, to the mineral kingdom.

There are again some people, who do evil but not good. They are wild animals. They belong to animal kingdom.

There are, however, some people, who do good and no evil. They are the people, who can lay a valid claim to belong to the category of human beings.

They are the people, who are tolerant, just and creative. The mystics belong to this class. They want to make the world more beautiful and better place to live in and work. They are endowed with moral and spiritual talent and the spirit of toleration. To them, creative work is possible everywhere and in every sphere of life. A house can even be turned into a home.

Advancement of human happiness and well-being is itself a creative activity.

The vital source

Toleration is the keystone to happiness, peace, prosperity and progress of mankind. Without it, life remains to be what it was in the state of nature.  Life in the state of nature has been described as “poor, nasty, and short”. It is no doubt true, that, without the spirit of toleration, life is burden and evokes perpetual conflict.

Personal happiness, safety and security do not depend upon material acquisitions and possessions. People of initiative, imagination and inspiration have always disputed the undue importance given to material things. According to Ralph Waldo Emerson,

Great men are they who see that spiritual is stronger than material force, that thoughts rule the world.”

It is not wise to run after cheap popularity. What is better than to insist on an exaggerated degree of popularity, is, to earn and to secure, by means of the spirit of toleration, the invaluable jewels of confidence and trust, regard and respect, and love and esteem of the people.

To win hearts is better than to rule over heads.

It is mere idealism to search and to find all-round perfection in human beings. It is a futile attempt to find a man free from some handicaps, limitations and defects. As we have our own defects and shortcomings, so others have. Let us, then voluntarily and sincerely show our spirit of toleration. This gesture of goodwill and this silent message of sharing their limitation is sure sign of magnanimity.

Suffering should be tolerated in a way that it ceases to be suffering. Calamities come and go. It is the human lot to suffer. Toleration is the mystic device to escape the rigours of the suffering, for they  lose their severity if not given due importance, and if not concentrated upon.

To seek morality of a high order in human affairs is beyond the dream of practical realization. It remains a goal to be attained. It is good guiding principle, but the fact is, that circumstances and environment determine, in a great degree and to great extent, the human conduct, human actions, human behavior and human social relations.

There are some people however, who are “willing to wound but afraid to strike.” Their code of morality is governed and dictated by their insistence on self-preservation.

Our troubles and our sufferings, however severe and exacting they may be, disappear into the dim past, as soon as they are judged in their true perspective. So it does not behove human dignity to complain of them.

Those troubles and sufferings, when buried deep in the past, add to our experience, show us light, give us direction, save us from many pitfalls and protect us from many hardships.

Our Distorted mental outlook and our nursing a grievance, or bearing resentment, or lamenting the past, revive our troubles and our suffering, long dead and gone into oblivion.

Instead of lamenting on the spilt milk, it is better for us to seek and to find happiness and peace within, by invoking the spirit of toleration.

The standard of morality and spiritual development differs from man to man, for the obvious reason, that the people are not given equal possibilities and they do not enjoy equal opportunities.

To expect a uniform standard of morality will be an expression of our fantastic desire to see all flowers of same colour and of the same smell, or to see plants and trees of the same colour or of the same size, or to see all birds of not different feathers, but of the same feather.

When judging the standards of morality, we have to take into account the heredity and environment also. 

The spirit of toleration is a sheet-anchor in life, and is capable of securing for man the coveted material comforts, and much desired happiness, security, safety and peace. Moreover, the spirit of toleration is also conducive to spiritual development.

It is good to act on the injunction “Do unto others as you would that they should do unto you.”

There are some people, however, who insist that “Others should do unto us as we would do unto them.”

Those, who are advanced in spiritual evolution go further and advise us to act in a better way. They say, “Do unto them better than they expect or hope to the done by.”

The spirit of toleration implies sympathy, adaptability, to see things in their proper perspective and above all, respect for the rights of others. The spirit of toleration stands for human happiness. To the Sufi mystics, it is an antidote to violence, upheaval, social disequilibrium, social confrontation and economic rivalry.

The mystics emphasize, that without the spirit of toleration, the world will not be beautiful place to live in. Let us then be guided by the spirit of toleration, which is capable of giving us happiness, peace and security.

The spirit of toleration is consistent with human dignity.

It is not toleration to bear things and situations favorable to us. The crucial test is to show the spirit of toleration when our personal interests are at stake, and when we are involved in a situation which is to our disadvantage. Toleration is born in the midst of strife and criticism, whether it is social or individual. Toleration need not be treated as fear or weakness. The spirit of toleration acts as a teacher, explaining to us, that the criticism of people should be tolerated. Loss should be recompensed by the spirit of toleration. Vindictive attitude towards our foes and opponents is inconsistent with our dignity and self-respect.

Let us then through the medium of toleration, try to secure the respect of people, if wecannot obtain their love.

Intolerance

Intolerance is weakness of human will. Religious intolerance, political intolerance, social intolerance, groupism, sectarianism and racialism divide mankind into watertight compartments.

Intolerance is the result of prejudice, prompted by jealousy, envy, greed fear, rivalry and the clash of personal interest.

The mystics believe, that, “what cannot be endured must be cured.” To them, it should be cured by toleration, patience and fortitude.

Differences of opinion are inevitable in society. They need not give vent to hatred and contempt.

To the English poet Shelly:

“It is not a merit to tolerate, but, rather a crime to be intolerant.”

Nobody can validly claim to be immune from the sense and feeling of intolerance. But, a person would exercise control over his likes and dislikes. It is not wise to be an extremist. Safety lies in moderation. It is better to avoid coercion.

Intolerance spreads the gospel of ill-will, discontent, dissatisfaction, hatred, suspicion, mistrust and conflict. It is quite possible, that modern facilities for mutual contacts and education and emphasis on emotional integration, will change and broaden the outlook of modern man.

Balanced living

The spirit of toleration should be acquired if we want to live in peace and enjoy the good things of life. Due allowance should be made for human nature and human weaknesses. It should be realized, that social good is weaknesses. It should be realized, that social good is more important than individual good. What is good for others is also good for a particular individual. Strict vigilance should be kept on enemies within.

One should try as best as he can to replace negative thoughts by positive thoughts.

Good books should be read. Good poetry should be enjoyed. Good friends should be valued. To forgive is divine. To forget is fine!

It is not wise to be over ambitious. Legitimate desires and few wants are enough to save a person from indulging in rivalry. Exploiting others for one’s own personal ends constitutes intolerance. The unfoldment of the mystery of the universe is possible through meditation. Sports and games are also useful to overcome intolerance.

The spirit of toleration has been labelled as the mother of many virtues. The spirit of toleration implies self-mastery, self-control, patience, self-discipline, mercy, benevolence, forgiveness and exercise of charity. 

Self-discipline implies self-conquest. Self-conquest leads to self-realization. Self-realization is to be sovereign in life.

A man, who has an ideal before him, a man of wide vision and positive thoughts, and a man endowed with trained mind, does not care what is said of him, and what comes before him.  To him, the smiles and the frowns of the people are a passing phase. He looks around and laughs, and scoffs and mocks at the trifles of life.

The Golden Key

Toleration is the spirit of accommodation, adaptability, mutual help and self-adjustment.

Intolerance is an ugly monster seeking dominance and showing haughtiness.

Intolerance rests on the lopsided view of life.

Toleration prompts us to accept a different society, a different situation and a different environment.

The Sufi mystic way of life is not only to tolerate, but totally ignore mischief and persecution.

Toleration is mental discipline.

 The spirit of toleration is a stepping stone to greatness; greatness not thrust but achieved.

Return of good for evil constitutes the expression of the ethical aspect of toleration.

Toleration is an escape from egoism and perverted outlook.

The spirit of toleration is enough to save us from vengeance, discord and disunity Toleration takes us to the fountain of Bliss. It is the extension of human personality.

According to the mystics, as God tolerates our foibles and failings and our ingratitude, so we should extend toleration to his creatures.

Toleration implies the acquisition of inestimable virtues like patience, perseverance and above all humanism. It constitutes a measuring rod of our sense of proportion and perspective.

A wise man ever avoids coercion, confrontation and conflict.

Let the spirit of toleration lead and serve as a guide to human conduct.

Intolerance implies the dissipation of energy, and loss of self-control. On the other hand, toleration stands for conservation of energy for constructive work.

Of the tolerant person, it may be said, that what he touches, he adorns, whereas, and intolerant person makes ugly the things that he touches.

Intolerance is the result of contempt and false notions of personal power and prestige.

Human nature being what it is, it is too much to expect common people to be tolerant on all occasions. There are few people indeed, who may be “peace-at-any price men.” It requires moral training, education, an inspiring atmosphere and a good environment.

Intolerance is rigid and fails to take into consideration the shortcomings and limitations besetting the people.

Tolerance is message of humility in behavior, meekness in dealings, adaptability in social relations, and humbleness in everyday life and moderation in all things.

Man is a theatre, one to another. Our short life “rounded with a sleep” presents a drama itself. The pattern of thoughts determines what our life should be, a comedy or tragedy.

Let us be silent spectators, seeing the spectacle enacted on the human stage. Let us be willing and prepared to give and to extend our co-operation and our sympathy to the actors, marking an ocular proof of our undiminished spirit of toleration and mutual collaboration.

We need not bring a no-confidence motion against ourself. It is better and feasible and proper, if we keep it reserved for some other occasion.

Let it be brought, if and when the occasion calls for; against our own ministry of senses and feelings to save us from tension and turmoil, generated by the world of caste, colour and custom, in which we live.

Let us live in the garden of the world like a flower, giving fragrance and tolerating the weather.


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

The Mystical Interpretation of Colours

The vision of a better life should ever inspire an individual. This is not only necessary for progress, but, also, for self-satisfaction.

When you have hope and courage, then you are said to live. Without hope and courage, life is not worth living. Without hope and courage, you do not live, but, merely exist.

When you exhibit the spirit of self-help and mutual help, then, you live, indeed.

When you have an idea, a goal and a definite purpose in life, then, you live, of course.

When you have faith which can still remove mountains, then, there is no doubt, that you live.

When you have enthusiasm and unflagging zeal, then, you live. Of enthusiasm, Emerson has very aptly said:

“Every great and commanding movement in the annals of the world is the triumph of enthusiasm – nothing great was ever achieved without it.”

If you have fortitude, patience and perseverance, which enable you to successfully overcome many a problem of life, then, of course, you live.

If you lack the spirit of self-help and mutual help, if you lack hope and courage, if you do not possess an iron will, if you are not actuated by an ideal, if you have not set before yourself a definite purpose, if you are not guided and inspired by faith and enthusiasm, if you do not exhibit patience, fortitude and perseverance, then you cannot claim to live. you merely exist. you merely drift in the vast ocean of life. You are at the mercy of the waves. They may take you wherever they like.

Let the modern man come out of the intensive care unit in which he has lived so long. The grey of depression should cease to have any influence upon him. May the Golden Age descend upon the troubled globe, called Earth, where we live and work! Let man forget gold and turn his attention towards God.Let us make progress towards our destined goal. Progress, called by any name, whether enlargement of conscience, or development of social sense or social justice, uplift of humanity or disinterested service rendered, would smell not only sweet, but, would act as balmy breath to those in search of better and higher values of life.

Let us act and behave as if we have recovered from our serious malady and spiritual sickness and mental and moral disequilibrium.

In other words, we should behave as if we are sane, sober and normal persons, no more seized and besieged by narrow outlook, superstitions, intolerance, hatred, envy, selfishness and ill-will.

Let us resolve to learn to live happily and peacefully in a world, which now furnishes us more opportunities to come closer to each other, to understand each other, to help and to assist each other, and to be of use to others. Let us avail the opportunities, which now lie at hand, to give a fillip and to stimulus to the co-operative endeavor and to widen our outlook and to enlarge or mental horizon.

Let us then, pray that our life begins to be coloured in the very near future. By coloured life, I mean and imply a search for new avenues, avenues of universal brotherhood, love, devotion, affection, humanism, recognition of human dignity, the spirit of endurance and endeavour, devoted to the search of Truth.

Man should come out of his self-inflicted misery. This he can do by changing the colour of his thoughts.

The mental body of a person, depicting the colours and striations, can well be seen by the clairvoyant. The colours and striations show his character and his progress. As the mind develops, there is a change in ideas. Change in ideas leads to change in colours.

There are many colours. Some colours are known and there are some colours, which for want of a better name, maybe called unknown colours.

Colours are visible everywhere, in every object and in everything. Every person has his own colour. There is colour in trees and plants. Every flower has a distinct colour. Every fruit displays some colour. There is no animal, and bird, which is devoid of colour. Natural phenomenon is nature’s gift Who is there, who can say that he has not been moved by the colour which such a phenomenon displays? The rising and the setting of the sun should inspire us and delve us deep in the mystery of nature.

The rainbow, which comes and goes, has such a beautiful combination of colours that it must captivate our hearts and give us spiritual ecstasy. There is colour in stones too. Every precious stone displays some colour. Diamond, which may be white or black, is distinct from a ruby, which is red. Ruby is distinct from emerald, which is green and emerald is distinct from sapphire, which is blue. There are other precious stones, which differ from one another on account of their colour.

Every piece of art exhibits some colour. There can be no painting without some colour. Calligraphy implies the right use of colour.

Preference of certain colour is personal. One type of colour may appeal to one person. The same colour may not be liked by another person. This personal preference becomes apparent in their dress and in their living. Some people have their drawing rooms and their bedrooms, displaying the type of colour that, they like,and admire extol most.

Green: Grey Green; Emerald-green; Pale-luminous blue-green; Bright apple-green; Bottle-green

Yellow: Dull-Yellow; Primrose-yellow; Gold -yellow

Blue:  Light-blue; Violet-blue; Luminous Lilac-blue; Sky-blue

Red:   Lurid-red; Sanguinary-red; Ultra-red

Violet:  Ultra-violet

White: White is White

Brown: Brown grey; Brown-red; Greenish-brown

Characteristics of Colours

Every colour has its own characteristic. Every colour expresses emotions. Let us take each colour one by one.

Grey: It signifies depression. It surrounds a person in such a way that it appears that the person is in a cage.

Grey livid: It is a hideous colour. It implies fear.

Black: it shows hatred and malice.

Lurid and sanguinary red:  It is a mark of sensuality.

Grey-brown: It stands for selfishness.

Orange: It is a mark of pride.

Indigo: Signifies selfless love.

Greenish-brown: It stands for jealousy.

Brown-red: It indicates greed and avarice.

Scarlet cloud: It shows irritability.

Crimson: It manifests selfish love.

Ultra-violet: it marks out the development of psychic faculties in its higher and nobler forms.

Ultra-red: It is opposed to Ultra-violet. It denotes psychic faculties too, but, in a lower and baser form, indicating evil, mischief and ignoble forms of magic.

Green: It is a neutral colour and stands for adaptability and the spirit of toleration.

Grey-green: It signifies treachery, deceit and deception.

Emerald-green: It is just opposite to and better than Grey-green. It is free from selfishness. It betokens ingenuity, resourcefulness and above all versatility.

Pale, luminous blue-green: it signifies adaptability. It is a mark of mercy, compassion and sympathy.

Bright apple-green: It signifies force, vigour and vitality.

Blue: Dark and clear blue stands for, and is an expression of religious feeling. It may be Grey-blue or Violet blue or Indigo blue.

Violet: Indicates psychism.

Light-Blue: As indicated in cobalt, is the sure sign of dedication and devotion to a spiritual ideal, which is noble, lofty and sublime.

Violet blue: Blue mixed with Violet signifies love, affection and devotion.

Luminous lilac blue: It has generally golden stars, which are bright and sparkling. It indicates higher form of spirituality, manifesting noble, sublime and lofty spiritual aspirations.

White: It denotes purity.

Changing Colours

The thought-forms change with the change of ideas and ideals. With the change of thought-forms, the colours are also changed. A person may like one colour today. He may like another colour tomorrow. The reason for this sudden or gradual change is not far to seek.  It is due to his change of ideas. It is due to his pursuit of different ideals. It is due to the change in his thoughts, transforming them into a different person, having a different outlook on life.

Real change is the change of thoughts. Inner revolution, which is a change of thoughts, may be termed a new birth.

I can say from my own personal experience, that, there was a time in my life, when I had a liking and a fascination for the colour called Emerald-green. I preferred to see Emerald-green all around me. My coat was green. I used to wear an emerald ring. I used to write with a green fountain pen. But, after some time, I underwent a change in the preference of colours. I began to be attracted more and more towards the colour blue. When I could not see blue, I used to feel uneasy, distracted and dismayed. I had a piece of paper painted blue and I would gaze at it. By seeing it, I got a sense of relief and satisfaction. I think, that this type of change comes in the life of everyone at some stage, when a person automatically, and voluntarily, votes for the colour of his new preference.

The colours of objects, which surround a person, have also, a vital bearing on his life and thoughts. The colours of objects kindle the feelings and produce the thoughts, which are in conformity with those colours. The walls, the furniture and the carpets have, also, their own effect. The colours of birds, animals, trees, plants and flowers, also, exert their influence. The blue colour of a peacock, the green colour of a parrot, and the red colour of a rose create distinct feelings and thoughts.  The selected colours in places of worship, in centers of learning and in places of meditation are meant to create feelings and a condition of mind, appropriate to imbibe the spirit of the occasion.

The mental development of a person is a slow and a gradual process, Unlike physical development, which is achieved through physical exercises, mental development requires the training of the mind and the senses.

Education and training, meditation, contemplation, introspection, good company, good books, good associations, literature, art and poetry, study of scriptures, and above all suffering, trials and tribulations, serve as aids, leading to the mental and moral development of man. Suffering is a teacher, and we have to learn many things from the stern teacher called suffering.

The First thing necessary for mental and moral development is self-control. Without self-control, thoughts cannot be controlled, and without thoughts being controlled the mind cannot be controlled, and when the mind is not controlled a person is at the mercy of his thoughts. They may lead him to do what he, in fact, does not want to do.

Such being the case, the person without self-control, will be ever in confusion and in an agitated mood, keeping him dissatisfied and ever restless.

This aspect of emotion life lands a person in untold misery. He suffers emotional shock with the result, that, the colours of his thought-forms are diffused and disturbed. He becomes irritable and volatile. He is ever changing, not knowing his exact goal or destination. He is capable of doing antisocial actions.

In the mental body of subnormal person, the thought-form of scarlet is prominently displayed. This means, that he is actuated by the thoughts of sensuality, deceitfulness, selfishness, greed and lust. He is liable to show anger at the slightest provocation.

In an ordinary man, there is more of the colours of rose-pink and blue, indicating love and devotion, respectively, than yellow, which signifies intellect. Green is above the scarlet.

The developed man exhibits pure violet, indicating spiritual aspiration. The colours of orange (Pride), scarlet (anger) and brown (selfishness) have disappeared.

A spiritually developed person is a unique phenomenon of God on earth. He exhibits love, devotion, sympathy and intellectual aspirations, continually at the same time, without break or pause. The corresponding colours of those feelings, emotions and thought-form are prominently displayed in him.

He is responsive to the higher working of life. Higher intellect and loftier emotions enrich his life.

The element of yellow is predominant in a matter-of- fact person. He is not very emotional nor very imaginative. He does not share much power and enthusiasm. He is careful and vigilant. He is ever on guard.

An intuitional man exhibits more of blue colour; but, the colour is not very bright. There is not order. Everything is ill-regulated. He suffers, but, his suffering pays. Through his suffering, he makes great strides, progresses and thus becomes what he is.

In the scientific type of man, the colours are in regular lines, and lines of demarcation are clear, precise and definite.

Sometimes, intellectual development taken to the extreme, results in the total, or partial disappearance of devotional feelings, and in the considerable reduction of sensuality.

A perfect man has everything within him. What is acquired first and what is acquired last, does not matter the least.

A sudden shock assumes the form of livid, grey mist. Intensity of anger assumes the colour of blackness. Fear makes all the colours dim. Livid, grey mist is an indication of fear.

When in love, things are otherwise. A lover not only sighs and sobs on ‘the midnight pillow’ but he also drives away the green colour and imbibes brownish-green which signifies jealousy. The bright scarlet-flashes overtake him, which indicate anger. There is an improvement in him of the blue colour which is a mark of devotion. There is also a touch of pale violet. The splendid band of crimson in him shows selfish love. Yellow of intellect entirely vanishes.

A young child has white in his aura. With the development of qualities, colours begin to assume form.

The quality of thought and emotion determines colour. Mystical thought and the psychic faculties have their own colours, which for want of an exact name, cannot be described.

A man can be judged by his colours and his striations. The favourite colour of man proclaims the man.

Colour Therapy

We are living in an Industrial age. We spend most of the time in rooms, tenements, factories, workshops, cottages and apartments, where we have artificial light. Under such conditions, the importance of colour and light is evident. This calls for colour therapy.

Light is the most important environmental input after food, as it controls bodily functions.

Colours are not used in the treatment of different types of diseases. There is an influential section of the medical practitioners who assert and claim that, the pills, capsules and surgery are not as effective and useful as colour therapy.

It is said, that, some of the diseases, with which the modern man suffers, have a psychosomatic component.

Colour has a physiological effect. Light has a noticeable effect on blood pressure and respiration. The significant effects of some positions of the electromagnetic spectrum are too well known.

The x-rays, microwaves, ultra-violet rays and the cobalt rays are now used for variety of diseases and ailments.

Colours, not only affect blood pressure and respiration, but, also, brain activity and bio-rhythms.

The ultra-violet rays serve as a check on black lung disease. The Ultra-violet lamps are fast replacing the fluorescent light. It increases work ability. It saves from cold. It prevents, to a great extent, the inflammation of mucous membrane, known as catarrhal infection.

The ultra-violet treatment is also useful for skin diseases, especially for psoriasis, which is a virulent type of skin disease, displaying red patches. Herpes sores are healed by fluorescent light. Photosensitizing drugs are also used with the fluorescent light.

A standard treatment, now replacing the blood transfusions for those babies born with fatal jaundice, is the bath of blue light.

Passive pink has replaced force. It regulates the health and behavior of unruly manic and psychotic children. The pacifying effect of passive pink is useful to pacify children. They tend to relax and become clam.

Colours are also used to control the mind. In some restaurants, we find red being displayed. This is with a view to increasing the appetite. Ultra-violet is used to make up the mental deficiency of children.

Colour also sets the mood, and this, in its turn, affects health. Designers and interior decorators know this secret.

Expert designers are engaged to decorate the interior of a sea-ship, the places of worship the hospitals, the operation theatre, the drawing room and the bedroom.

Psychological effects of colour may be physiological in some cases, and they may not be physiological in other cases.

Sometimes, in some schools, to make the children better behaved and more attentive, the colours of the walls are changed from orange and white colours to royal and light blue. The orange rug is replaced by a grey carpet.  Full spectrum lighting takes the place of fluorescent lights. The result of all this proves satisfactory. Besides making the children calm and peaceful, it reduces their blood pressure.

The pituitary and the pineal glands, the two very important force-centers in the body of man, are also affected by the electromagnetic energy displayed by colours. The development of the pineal gland is healthy sign of spiritual growth, but, its early and premature or swift development is not without danger to mind, or body, or to both.

Man has not only a physical body, but there are in him other bodies too, namely sensation-body, mental-body and an intuition-body. An ordinary man may not see them, but to trained psychic, they are perceptible. The reason is that the pineal gland and pituitary gland which were lying dormant have been awakened by the psychic.  The latent faculties of the two glands have been awakened.

A trained psychic sees the colours of sound and also the human aura. He also perceives other vibrations.

Music has a moral effect. It can inspire moral feelings. On the emotional body, music has great effect. The vibrations of music have a very marked effect. The emotional body is susceptible to the vibratory influence. Each note of music actually produces a colour. Sound and colour have close association. There are some people who associate colours with tones of music. A trained psychic is capable of perceiving colours, produced by the vibrations of musical instruments. Every note suggests a different colour. Music manifests colour and thoughts-forms. Some colours are pure and clean. Some colours are muddy. The mind and the intention of the composer determine the colour.

Colour blindness implies the inability to distinguish colours. There are primary colours; red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. There are Local colours, Neutral colours, Positive colours, Complementary colours and Subjective or Accidental colours. Every national flag has its own different colours. Every flag or ensign of a regiment displays the military colour.

To some psychics vowels represent different colours.

Thus:

a              represents violet;

e             represents yellow;

ee           stands for indigo;

I               signifies orange;

o             represents red;

u             manifests blue; and

OO         signifies green.

According to other psychics;

a              stands for blue;

e             stands for white;

I               represent black;

o             signifies whitey-brownish;

u             signifies opaque brown.

 

Thought-vibration is far-reaching, more powerful and lasting than thought-form. Anger or irritation takes the form of a splash of red and orange. The form of a yellow snake depicts intense curiosity or desire to know. A brownish snake represents jealousy.

Unwavering and sustained devotion is exhibited in form, which resembles a flower. It may be due to this fact that Sufi devotees and others offer flowers at the tombs of saints and at other places of religious importance and worship.

Clinging to coloured life

Every thought has its own vibrations, and these vibrations give birth to colours. Hence, the thought should be positive and lofty in order to ensure that the vibrations may be sound.

A concentrated Self brings about the desired result. Hope is the best diamond. The lustre of such a diamond lends lustre to life.

If the thought has force, vigour, vitality and strength, then the thought-forms are bright and brilliant.

Success goes to the talented, committed optimist and the enthusiast.

Be your own Columbus, and discover not a country or a continent, but, your own colours.

Live simply, think calmly, act wisely, work hopefully and look forward confidently.

Let us sow a seed, which may come out into a flower.

 

************

Give me love and leisure,

Let them come in abundant measure.

Give me light and learning,

This I ask for with deep yearning

Give me strength the challenges of life to bear, with serenity of mind, calmly and without fear.

 

Ref:IP

 


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively, you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

The mystic concept of dreams in Sufiana spheres.

Interpretation of dreams

 

Without peace within, there can be no strength coming from within. When we cease to draw from within, it appears that our resources are exhausted. It appears then, as if a bank has gone into liquidation, and a receiver has been appointed to pay a certain percentage of their deposits to the creditors.

The eminent English poet, P.B Shelley, finding himself deprived of inner peace, says thus, in an anguishing tone:

 

“Alas! I have nor hope nor health,

Nor peace within nor calm around

Nor that content, surpassing wealth

The sage in meditation found,

And walked with inward glory crowned.

Nor fame, nor power, nor love, nor leisure; 

Others I see whom these surround

Smiling they live, and call life pleasure;

To me that cup has been dealt in another measure.” 

 

Many of us today share the anguish and agony of Shelly, because, we have ceased to lead inner life, which can alone give us what we need most, peace and nothing but peace. When we keep ourselves away from the axis of power, suffering, mental and spiritual, is inevitable.

All the philosophy, all the ethics, all the codes, all the laws and all the norms and standards are directed towards making life true, sublime, beautiful, happy and noble. But alas! We have achieved little in this direction. It appears that the sermons of the sages and the preaching of the philosophers have done little to make our life what it should have been.

Whatever we have achieved so far has not proved of much use as we do not know the right use of it.

There can be no doubt that we receive guidance from different sources. But there are a very few people, indeed, who give consideration and serious thought to a source of light and guidance, which is of vital importance.  What is that source? Should I tell you? It is your dreams.

When I talk to you about dreams, I do not intend to enter into needless controversy about dreams. I decry discussing dogma or theory. I am not interested in the “how” and “why” of dreams. I am interested in dreams as such. I am aware of their importance and significance in our life.

I am more interested in Dreams than in the definition of dreams. Some people may ask why we see dreams. My reply is that since we are human beings, so we see dreams. As human beings we are endowed with the faculty of seership so we see dreams. As human beings we have the faculty of reason. We have the senses of touch, hearing, seeing, smelling, and tasting. But nobody asks and questions, why do we see, hear, touch, smell and taste, for everyone knows they an integral part of human life. Likewise, they must know that dreams are also a natural gift to human beings.

I am not interested in counting trees in a garden. I feel interested in eating the fruits of the trees of the garden, and enjoying the fragrance and smell and I wish to be at peace in the bewitched natural scene of tender plants, of scented dust, and smiling flowers.

Everybody sees dreams. Is there anyone who can say that he or she has never seen a dream in his or her lifetime?

There is nothing surprising about it. As we say, that, to err is human, so we can say that to dream is human.

Dreams constitute the spiritual heritage of mankind. It is good to have dreams. But it is not good to be day dreaming.

It is said of dreams, that it constitutes one fortieth part of prophethood.

 

Nature of Dreams

The dream of a prophet is revelation. The dream of a saint is inspiration. The dream of an enlightened person is intuition. The dream of others is illumination, or indication.

Dreams have been variously described. Some say that a dream is a figment of the imagination. To others, a dream is a manifestation of the thought which a person may be holding in the day, previous to the dreams.

There are others, however, who hold that a dream is a nightmare, which is the result of indigestion.

A dream is a little story having a plot in it. The story is short and the plot is intricate. There are few words and its duration is short. As we see a picture on a screen, or a play on the stage, likewise we see a dream in sleep.

A dream is an insight into life. A dream is search for the solution of our conflicts and difficulties.

All the dreams cannot be a figment of imagination or the result of indigestion. There are different types of dreams. There are dreams which serve as a warning. There are dreams, which are of the nature of suggestion, or indication. There are also prophetic dreams. There are symbolic dreams. There are dreams which serve as forecast.

There are dreams which serve as a guide. There are dreams which acquaint the person of the condition of another person. Prophetic dreams are forecasts. Some dreams are of the type of clairvoyance.

There are also exhibition dreams. There are also dreams of action. There are flying dreams. There are floating dreams. There are typical dreams. There are dreams of one’s own personal condition. Some dreams have colour. Some dreams are without colour.

Dreams have a vital bearing on life. Some dreams point to a person’s spiritual progress.

Some people remember their dreams. Some people forget their dreams. It is good to train oneself to remember dreams. It is better to write them down and watch their effect.

Duration

As regards length of dreams, it may be said, that it varies from dream to dream. Some dreams are very short, whereas some dreams are not too short. Some dreams are long, having inter-related plots.

Dream period is not very important. It is the dream that you see which is of importance.

Dreams in the first period of the night are generally short but muddled. Picture is not clear. The dream after midnight is a little long. But a dream between three and four o’clock in the morning is of an average duration. A dream in the day is sometimes short and sometimes a little long.

Multiplicity of dreams

A person may see one dream in a night or he may see more than one dream. The number of dreams in a night does not matter much.

 

Emotional reaction

The emotional reaction during a dream is also to be taken into account. How did one feel in the dream? Did he feel joy or self-satisfaction? Did he feel remorse or fear of guilt or the apprehension of some impending misfortune, or catastrophe or trouble, or affliction? Did he feel guilt or shame? What does he feel when he recalls as he recollects his dream? Does he feel any sensation of joy when recollecting it?

Does he feel fear, revulsion, relief, consolation, or whatever else it may be?

 

Influence

As regards the manifestation of the effect of dreams, it may be said that some dreams have a quick effect whereas the effect of some dreams is noticeable after some time. Sometimes it may be in a few months, or in a few years. The prophetic dreams, which are in the nature of forecasts, take time to fulfil the prophecy. The symbolic dreams manifest their effect comparatively at an early period. The dreams of suggestions are a message to the dreamer. As soon as the dreamer understands the message and acts upon it, the purpose of the dream is fulfilled.

Dreams, which are seen in the day, take time to manifest their effect. The effect of the dreams, which are seen between three and four o’clock in the morning, is noticeable in the not too distant future.

 

Some Historical dreams

 

Joseph, when he was about seventeen years old, saw a dream to this effect that the eleven stars and the sun and the moon prostrated themselves before him. He narrated the dream to his father, Prophet Jacob. His father, on hearing the dream, gave him this word of comfort and cheer, that he will be a chosen one of God and he will be endowed with the knowledge of interpretation of dreams. He would be exalted in rank, honour and prestige.

In the dreams, the sun stood for father, the moon for mother, and the eleven starts for his eleven brothers.

The dream prefigured the eminence of Joseph.

It is said of Abdul Qasim Al-Junayed of Baghdad, that he was reluctant to give discourses to his disciples so long as his own spiritual guide, Sari Saqti was alive.  One night it so happened, that he saw the Holy Prophet Mohammed (P.B.U.T-Peace be upon them) in a dream, who ordered him to preach to the people, for God had made his words the means of saving myriads of people.

Upon awakening, he was pleased with what he saw in the dream, and thought that his rank was higher than that of Sari Saqti, since the Holy Prophet himself had commanded him to preach to the people at large.

At the time of sunrise, his spiritual guide Sari Saqti sent a messenger to him, with this message, that now that the Holy Prophet had commanded him to preach, he should start preaching, though he had been ignoring in the past the request of his disciples, the intercession of the sheikhs of Baghdad, and above all, this own entreaties on this behalf.

Junayed, on receiving this message was surprised and thought that the rank of Sari Saqti was no doubt higher than his own, as he was acquainted with his secret thoughts, whereas he was ignorant of Sari Saqti’s state.

He went to him and tendered him an apology. He requested him to let him know how he came to know his dream, in which the Holy Prophet commanded him to preach.

Sari Saqti told him in reply that he saw God in a dream, who informed him that he had sent his Apostle to command him to preach.

Hzrt Khwaja Moinuddin Hassan Sanjri Chishty Ajmeri (R.A) an eminent Sufi saint, belonging to the Chishty order saw the Holy Prophet (Peace be upon them) in a dream continuously for forty nights, commanding him to make Khwaja Qutubuddi Bakhtiar Kaki(R.A) his Caliph and to confer upon him the robe.

He also saw God in a dream giving him a similar order.

He did what he was commanded to do in the dreams.

The Day Hzrt khwaja Qutubuddin Bakhtiar kaki (R.A) came to know of the death of his spiritual guide Hzrt Khwaja Moinuddin Hassan Sanjari Chishty Ajmeri (R.A), that very night he saw him in a dream standin underneath the throne of God.

On being questioned, Hzrt Khwaja Moinuddin Hassan Sanjari Chishty Ajmeri (R.A) acquainted his disciple, Caliph and Sajjad-a-nashin, Khwaja Qutubuddin Bakhtiar kaki (R.A) of the mercy of God having showered upon him and of his being allotted a place near the angels and of his living underneath the Throne of God.

Interpretation of dreams

No two dreams are similar as no two persons are similar. In spite of some outward resemblances, there are some difference:

In interpreting a dream, every detail should be taken into account.

Every dream has its own individual importance, and when interpreting the dreams, its basic importance should be given due recognition.

Every symbol means something different to different people.

When a dream is repeated, and its underlining ideas, visible in the form of symbols, appear more than once in dream, it marks out the dream as conveying an important direction or suggestion to the dreamer.

When a dream is repeated, it is a force to be reckoned with. Such a dream conveys a meaningful message.

In interpreting dreams, emotional reaction is to be taken into account, and immediate experience is also to be considered.

In interpreting dreams the immediate situation in which the dreamer finds himself, is to be taken into account.

The season in which the dream is seen constitutes a vital factor in the interpretation of dreams. A person sees in a dream fire underneath his bed. If he has seen this dream in summer, it is a source of trouble, but if he has the same dream in winter, then it points to comfortable living for the dreamer.

On awakening from the dream, one must not be in a hurry to search and seek it interpretation. He should have no forebodings about his dream. He should try to convince himself that his dream is good and offers a solution to him.

A dream should not be narrated to each and every one. It should not be narrated in the night. When narrating his dream one should be very exact and precise. He should not add anything to it and he should not suppress any of its portion or detail. Addition to or subtraction from the dream is misrepresentation of the dream.  Misrepresentation deprives a dream of much of its power and influence, howsoever good and inspiring the dream may be.

A dream should be narrated, and that too privately, to the one who is sympathetic to the dreamer and who takes interest in his life and is concerned with his welfare and happiness.

A dream should be related to a saint or to a saintly person, or to a man of lofty moral character, or to a learned man who is supposed to have insight into life.

Sometimes, it so happens, that a dream loses its inherent effect if narrated to any ordinary man, or to a man who is not very friendly to the dreamer.

A person saw in a dream, that he had drunk the whole ocean, the dreamer tried to convey the dream for interpretation to another person who was pious and learned both. The person, appointed to convey the dream for interpretation, met another person on the way. After exchanging greeting, the person asked him where he was going. He replied that he was commissioned to get the interpretation of the dream from another person, whom he named. On being asked the dream, he narrated the whole dream. Upon this the person who had met him said. “I am surprised that drinking the ocean his stomach did not burst.”

As soon as he reached his destination, the saintly and learned man said, “What is the use coming to me now, when you have already narrated the dream to a person on the way, who, in haste and without any sense of proportion and perspective, has given a prejudiced interpretation. The dream was good, but it has been marred and maimed and mutilated by the ill-conceived interpretation. The person who saw the dream would have acquired abundant knowledge and learning, but for the interpretation. It has lost it charm and effect, and the person has lost the chance.”

Signs and symbols

A dream is a search for realities. It is a quest for new avenues. It is a milestone in the journey of life.

A dream is a peep into the future, which may be black or bright.

A dream constitutes a window of the mind through which can be seen things unseen and unknown, some pleasant and inspiring and some unpleasant and depressing.

The environment in which a person lives and works has vital bearing not only on his life and thoughts, but also to a great extent, on his dreams.

 

 

A dream as a suggestion, is kindness shown.

A dream as a message, is manifold grace conferred.

A dram as a warning, is a favour, indeed.

A dream is an educative experience.

A dream is a secret entrusted to a person during sleep.

Narration of a dream is to invite another person to share that secret revealed to him during sleep.

Let us now take some dreams and dream signs and symbols. The list is illustrative. It cannot be exhaustive for the simple reason that every individual dream is a class by itself.

Teeth:          To see one’s teeth falling in dream means long life.

 

Water:          To be dipped in water means to be freed from pain, trouble and sorrow.

Bathroom:    To see a bathroom is a sign of death.

 

Garden:        To see a garden implies comfortable living in the future.

 

Watering:     To see oneself watering trees means to look after the downtrodden and the weak and the helpless.

 

Washing:     To see washing clothes means to be freed from bad habits or from sin.

 

Tree             To see a tree without fruit implies less profit and little benefit.

 

Snake:          To see a snake means to get wealth. It may also mean an enemy. It depends on the circumstances or situation in which the            dreamer finds himself.

To kill a snake means to overcome an enemy.

 

Hair:            To see one’s hair (of head) cut, means to be freed from the burden of debt. Payment of debt makes a person light.

 

Mango:        To see the eating of mangoes means to have a child. It also means to have wealth.

 

Prayer:         To see oneself giving a call to prayer at a wrong or inappropriate time, means to undergo anxiety or fear.

 

Ascent:        To go up high means to get respect. It may also mean promotion or the attainment of a high status.

 

Descent:       To descend from a high place means disgrace or loss of respect or degradation.

 

Horse:          To see a horse implies eminence.

To see one’s self riding a horse implies eminence.

To get down from a house is a sign of disappointment, frustration, and loss of post. But, it may also mean reaching the destination and thus achieving success in an undertaking. The crucial point in this dream is where the dreamer gets down from the horse, and on getting down from the horse what was uppermost in his mind, and what type of feelings did he undergo then.

 

Grazing:       To graze the goats implies guidance and leadership. Whether spiritual or political. It may also mean to govern and to rule.

 

Coffin:         To see one’s own, points to life prolonged.

To see oneself being wrapped up in a coffin implies disgust with the world, renunciation of the world or losing charm for the world.

 

 

Prayer:         To see oneself leading prayer means to be a spiritual guide and teacher.

 

Carpet:         To see oneself stretching a carpet on the floor means to be a source of comfort to others and to be a benefactor of mankind.

 

Drinking:     To see oneself drinking water to quench thirst and thirst increasing still, means acquisition of knowledge.

 

Saint:           To see a saint in a dream is to receive help and guidance.

 

Angles:        To see a saint in a dream is to receive help and guidance.

 

Spiritual Guide:     To see one’s own spiritual guide is to be blessed.

 

Rings:                    To see wearing a ring means prosperity, or marriage of his or her own liking.

To see a ring implies wealth.

 

Saint:                     To see a saint in a dream ordering someone else to give papers to the dreamer, pertaining to the dreamer, is to entrust the                                    dreamer with some exalted spiritual office or assignment.

 

 

Tree:            To see shady tree falling down on the ground points to the death of some elderly person in the family.

 

Sun:             To see oneself sitting bareheaded under the burning sun is to be deprived of help, assistance or advice. If a child sees such a                                  dream sitting bareheaded under the sun and eating food, this points to his or her becoming an orphan.

 

Darkness:     To see oneself gong in darkness means anxiety, trouble, affliction or suffering.

 

Light:           To see light is to get comfort, peace and prosperity.

 

Hands:         To see oneself washing hands implies failure, despondency, and despair in regard to the object that he wants to achieve.

 

Diamond:     To see a diamond is financial security.

 

Stairs:          To go up a staircase or to climb up a ladder points to success in the undertaking.

 

Pen:             To see a pen implies knowledge.

To see a pen in hand means acquisition of more knowledge or attainment of perfection in artistic pursuit.

To see oneself writing means to diffuse and spread knowledge.

To hold a pen means to exert authority.

 

Weeping:     To see oneself weeping in a dream implies to be rid of sorrow and get happiness afterward.

 

Water:          Pure and sweet water in a dream is ample provision for sustenance.

Muddy and unclear water points to an unhappy life.

Water flowing on muddy ground is an indication of obstruction to the achievement of the object that the dreamer has                   uppermost  in his mind at the time.

 

Wind:          Stormy wind is an indication of anxiety, pain or sorrow.

Moderate wind is a source of joy to the dreamer, but it constitutes grief to the enemy.

 

Naked:         To see oneself naked in a dream is the mark of disgrace.

 

Smoke:        smoke in a dream points to the increase of anxiety and trouble.

 

The Dead:    To take anything from the dead is the sure sign of some help, or assistance.

To give something to the dead points to some misfortune. It may be some loss in business or it may be some other loss.

 

Perfume:      To see perfume, which is applied is an indication of joy and pleasure, but to see perfume which is scattered invites trouble.

 

Ice:              To see Ice in a dream means helplessness to cope with the problem or the challenges of life. It may also mean death.

 

Lamp:          To see a lamp or lantern means the attainment of spiritual knowledge, or the wish to attain that type of knowledge, or light of the                        lamp or the lantern may throw some light on the problem which the dreamer wants to solve and which is evading solution.

 

Camel:         If seen in a dream it means a journey which is not comfortable.

 

Cow:            Cow in the dream stands for good crops and prosperity.

 

Barber:         To see a barber in a dream means that the dreamer will have trouble. His affairs will not admit to easy settlement.

Carrier:        A water carrier in dreams means wealth and so does a potter and a porter.

 

Goldsmith: If one may see a goldsmith in a dream it indicates wealth and success in the pursuit of the dreamer.

 

Physician:    To see a physician implies illness and pain and suffering.

 

Tailor:          To see a tailor is a sure indication of change in circumstances for the better.

 

Lion:            Lion in dream stands for an arrogant and cruel enemy.

 

Elephant:     Elephant in a dream is indicative of ruler whose anger and wrath know no bounds.

 

Desert:         To see a desert implies frustration and loss of refined sentiments and creative ideas.

 

Scissors:      To see a pair of scissors in a dream implies that the dreamer wants to get rid of someone whom he does not like and from whom he would like to separate himself.

 

Bridge:         To cross a bridge means success in the undertaking.

 

Clear water:     To see clear water flowing implies solution of some difficulty or successfully tackling the problem.

 

Well:            To see oneself falling in a well implies happiness and joy after sorrow and suffering.

Hunting:      Dreams of shooting and hunting are indication of the dreamer becoming a ruler.

 

Clothes:       New garment is the symbol of wealth. Old garment is an indication of sorrow and grief

 

Moon:          To see the new moon in a dream on first day of its appearance implies continuous pursuit of knowledge.

 

Tree Growth:         To see a tree growing in the courtyard and becoming shady indicates the birth of a son who will be a great conqueror or a                                  leader or benefactor of man.

 

Road:           To see the road or the railway line cleared means the removal of obstruction in some undertaking which the dreamer is engaged                           in. It serves as a green signal.

 

Lock:           To see a lock in a dream implies safety, security. Or it may mean captivity. To open the lock means to overcome difficulty. Not to                          succeed in opening a lock is an indication for the dreamer concerning the situation which he finds himself to be in.

 

Wedding:     To see a wedding in a dream is the solution of the future which the dreamer has been looking forward to.

The postponement or cancellation of the wedding or the bridegroom not turning up indicates that the woman loves the                        bridegroom but feels different about her future and is also not confident that she will fit well in the new atmosphere after the marriage.

 

Key:             To see a key in a dream implies anxiety of the dreamer to find a clue pointing to the solution of his problem.

The dream is also indicative of the dreamer’s desire to lead an inner life. It also implies release.

 

Broken Handles:    To see the handle of the sword or walking stick breaking, is a warning for the death of father or uncle or some near relation.

 

Storm:                    To see lightning or thunderstorm is an indication of impending catastrophe or some trouble to the dreamer.

 

Tombs:                  To see oneself at the tomb of some saint implies the dreamer’s yearning for spiritual progress.

 

Drum:                    To see drum in a dream means that, the secret will no more be a secret. It will be out.

 

Whispering:           `To see some saint whispering in the ear implies that the saint intends to entrust to the dreamer his own exalted spiritual office.

 

Burial:                    To see the burying of someone is indicative of the dreamer’s fear of being separated from that person, and thus the mutual                                  relationship is coming to an end.

To see oneself being buried means to be under a heavy weight of anxiety.

 

Shoes:                    To see shoes unbuckled implies divorce of wife.

 

Dogs:                     To see a dog in a dream means war and quarrel.

Ship:                      To see a ship is the glad tiding of getting wealth.

 

Goat:                      To see a goat means mean and quarrel some people.

 

Leopard:                To see a leopard means a dangerous enemy.

 

Monkey:                To see a monkey means some impending mischief.

 

Bear:                      Bear in the dream means an enemy who is scheming and treacherous both. It also means a robber who will not let anyone go.

 

Fox:                       To see a fox in a dream means an enemy who is wild, cunning, crafty and deceitful. Same is true of a wolf and a hyena.

 

Scorpion:               a scorpion in a dream points to some calamity.

 

 

Hunter:                  To see hunter in a dream is a warning of treachery, deceit, and fraud.

 

Flying:                   Flying dreams are generally the indication of suppressed ambition and aspiration seeking an outlet.

 

Cat:                        To see a cat in a dream implies the increase in greed and avarice or it may refer to an evil.

 

Watch:                   To see a watch in a dream refers to an already missed or likely to be missed opportunity. It may have reference to the                                            feelings of regret and remorse of the dreamer. To see the watch stopped implies that the days of life of the dreamer are                                           numbered. The same is true of a clock.

 

Mantle:                  Mantle and cloak in the dream are indication of inner peace, harmony, self-satisfaction and of spiritual and moral beauty.

 

Garments:              A red garment in a dream stands for happiness and joy.

A black garment refers to fear. Yellow garment implies sorrow and suffering. Blue garment is grief and woe.

 

Cap:                       To put a cap on the head is to earn respect.

To see a cap falling from the head is the sure mark of disgrace.

 

Talisman:               To get a talisman is to be cured of magic.

 

Umbrella:               Umbrella in a dream signifies safety and security. It also refers to good living and protection from the storms of life. It also                                     refers to shield and shelter.

 

Walking stick:        To see oneself carrying a walking stick in hand is a message to the dreamer of his becoming a leader and guide and                                                   enjoying respect and honour.

 

The end of the Dream

 

Our dream period is over. We are awake. We no more live in the world of sign and symbols. We are once again driven to the world’s fancies, perception and delight.

 

Let us now recollect our dream. The dream lesson reminds us, that, a trained

And still mind can catch a message easily, and act upon it wisely.

To get good dreams and to get good suggestions and good messages, let us be

accompanied by good and positive thoughts when we go to bed. Place aside

Confusion and anxiety and toil and tears of the day. Have a still mind and calm

thoughts, and thus, get a glimpse through the window of the mind of some signs

and symbols which are uplifting and see a world which need not be new and

brave, but which is, undoubtedly, informative, indicative, suggestive, and at

times, inspiring too.

 

What more and what next?

Let you bad dreams become ineffective.

Let your good dreams come true too soon.

 

Journey of life

Call life by whatever you may,

A battle, a gamble or a game to play;

Success and failure a passing pause, I say,

But pain and pleasure do not display.

…. Unknown


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hzrt Bayazid Bistami (R.A) says

Rah- e -Tasawwuf ( The path of Sufi mysticism )


HAZRAT BAYAZID BISTAMI SAYS:
1. It is only the beginning, if an arif possess the
qualities of the Almighty


2. Inner knowledge without love is worthless.


3. Almighty God knows the heart of His saints. There
are a few who are unable to bear the burden of
the inner knowledge, hence He has kept them
occupied with worship.


4.God bestows three qualities on those who are dear
to Him: generosity like the river, kindness like the
sun and hospitality like that of the earth.


5. The Almighty God appoints a Pharaoh over those
He accepts, so that he may cause them difficulties.


6. Keeping company with good people is better than
having virtues and keeping company with the
wicked is worse than having vices.


7. Strive in your struggle, but keep the eyes on His grace.
8. He is an arif, who cannot be corrupted by any
religion or custom and through whom all impurities are cleansed.


9. When people asked him what a dervish is, he
replied: He, who has found a treasure in the lotus
of the heart, would be a disgrace to the life
hereafter but he, who has found the ‘pearls of
love’ in this treasure, is a dervish.


10. When people asked him, when will man reach
the Almighty God, he replied, “by annihilating the
self within”.


11. When people asked him, “how have you achieved
all that you have”, he replied, “by collecting all the
worldly goods, tying them with the chains of
contentment, putting them in the slings of sincerity
and casting them away in the river of despair”.


(TAZKARAT-UL-AULIA)

The life pattern of the mystics.

The mystics are, in a way, like the sun. They also give light and dispel darkness. They inspire, guide and teach.

Nobody worships the setting sun. But, unlike the sun, even when the mystics die and depart, they are adorned and extolled.

Like the rays of the sun, they make no distinction between man and man. To them, there is no East or West and no border or birth.

Likewise, a mystic believes in service rendered to the people, belonging as they do, to different sects, groups, and communities.

A mystic is, in fact, above the distinctions of caste, creed, colour, religion or region.

A mystic believes and believes firmly, what Hamlet says to Horatio:

“There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

A mystic is an institution in himself. His lifestyle serves as a beacon light. The eminent poet H.W. Longfellow truly says:

“Lives of great men all remind us We can make our lives sublime, And, departing, leave behind us Footprints on the sand of time…”

To a mystic, life is a great gift. Life then, being a gift, it is for us to make it or mar it, use it or abuse it, assimilate it or dissipate it.

Right use of life is necessary for creative living. Life is a constant search for new avenues.

The mystics lead a calm, placid and serene life. They prize the gift of life, and as such, they offer thanks to their Creator, Who has bestowed the gift of life upon them.

They have pity for those who do not use the gift of life in a befitting manner.

They are a peace -loving people, who abhor selfish-ness. Sri Ramakrishna very aptly says:

“The first sign of knowledge is a peaceful nature, and the second is the absence of egotism.”

Everyone of us, whether high or low, rich or poor, literate or illiterate, is given some gift to be utilized and used rightly. If the gift so given is not used rightly, it ceases to be a gift. The gift, so given, is to sustain the man. If not used properly, and at the opportune time, it does not lift,but lowers the man.

The mystics know how to use the gifts. The right use of a thing is an achievement, indeed.

The character of a man is best judged in a time of crisis. How he acts and reacts in a time of poverty and penury, in a time of degradation,deprivation, despondency, and in a time of some loss , sorrow, suffering and misfortune, proclaims the type of man that he is.

The mystics accept with a smile whatever comes in their way, for they take it as coming from their Friend, and as such, it is a gift from their Beloved.

The mystics take the crisis, calamity or misfortune as a normal course of human life. Where is the sea which may not have ebb and tide? Where is the sun and the moon which may not undergo eclipse some time or the other? Where is the steam of crystal clear pure water, which may not have mud in the bottom?

In moments of darkness, they act as normal persons. They do not show worry, anxiety, care or fear in face of danger.

Every one of us undergoes, at times, emotional strain. An ordinary man is cowed down, but a mystic, gifted with insight and endowed with spiritual vigour and force, remains normal, sane and sober.

To meet a challenge and to face a problem with fortitude and courage is the distinguishing mark of the trait of character of those evolved spiritually.

Everyone has some problem or the other. The problem may be big or small, but,it poses a threat to inner harmony and peace.

I do not think that there is any person, who may claim to have no problem. I do not believe that there can be any life, so barren, as to have no problem.

To have a problem is the sign of a vibrating life. To solve the problem is the sign of self-mastery.

To have a problem is good, but to be a problem is bad.

The mystics are not the slaves of passions. They take the problem as the spice of life. They seek the solution in self-adjustment.

To a mystic, success and failure do not matter the least. They come and they go. They are passing phase of life. They are to him relative terms.

To him, success implies the arduous pursuit of the goal, which is nothing, but to get rid of the double self. Double self is an impediment to inner purification and inner illumination. One cannot serve God and Mammon at the same time.

There are two types of life-the outward life and the inner life, or we may say the material life and the spiritual life. One cannot embrace both. He has to take one and leave the other.

A mystic aspires for inner unity, harmony and peace. He wants to free himself from the shackles and burden of double self. Double self implies divided self. Divided self leads to divided attention and divided pursuits, with the result, that it becomes an impediment to his onward march to unification.

The process of unification is beset with uncertainty and difficulties. Sometimes, the process is long, demanding patience. The process of unification does not admit of any reason or rhyme. It knows of no dogma or doctrine. But what it requires is the search and the quest.

Unification, is true, comes slowly and gradually. But sometimes, it so happens, that, it comes all of a sudden. Sometimes, it comes through mystical experience. Intellectual insight is another powerful influence.

Inner discord is inner conflict. Like any other conflict, inner conflict is tormenting. Sometimes the life of a person is changed suddenly. How does it happen? What is that force, vigour or stimulus that does this astonishing feat?

Love changes the life of a person to such and extent as nothing else can. To those, who lead an inner life, love is a sustaining power. It is a supreme passion. To the mystics, love is a gift-an invaluable gift. The guiding star of love is the signpost.

Love, to be really love, should be free from all considerations. It should be such that,

it never alters;

it never falters;

it never barters;

it is above all possessions;

it seeks nothing;

it gives everything;

it pays the price; and

it prepares for any sacrifice.

Ambition is another stimulus. Revenge is another. Devotion is also an aid to the process of unification.

Process of unification calls for self-control. Hence, one should get rid of lust, greed, avarice, and above all, of anger and worry.

Anger and worry are the great impediments. They are the symbols of the divided self. Anger is the brute in man. As regards worry, what is the hurry to worry about? Plato says:

“Nothing in the affairs of men is worth worrying about.”

No healthy man would like to walk on crutches. Everyone wants to walk on his feet, and not to creep. To a mystic, so long as we are under the influence of our inner enemies, which are no other than greed, lust, anger, malice and worry, we remain paralysed and as such, we cannot stand and walk. We can only creep.

Anger and worry are the two formidable enemies of relaxed living and inner peace.

Instead of anger and worry, the life of the mystics is characterized by patience and the spirit of tolerance.

The eminent Sufi poet Hafiz of Shiraz has something relevant and important to suggest. He says in one of his verses thus:

” The comfort of the two worlds constitutes the commentary of these two words, With friends kindness, with enemies courtesy.”

The mystics are essentially persons, fired by imagination. What William Blake wrote is true in the case of the mystics:

“To see a world in a grain of sand, And heaven in a wild flower, Hold infinity in the palm of your hand, And eternity in an hour.”

They are idealists and actuated by an ideal. They are men of vision, who design a different world from the one we live in.

To call them men of force, vigour and of lofty character, endowed with dignity of manner, purity of heart, sublimity of thought, felicity of expression, noble deeds, simplicity, sincerity, humility, sympathy, and integrity, is not exaggeration. But, it is a factual statement supported by their precepts and practices.

The mystics are men of character. They exhibit such noble traits of character as industry, sobriety, indifference to pain and pleasure, sterling honesty of purpose, truthfulness, kindness, mercilessness, courage, goodness, and uprightness in all its phases.

Good life implies good character. About good life, George Herbert says thus:

“A handful of good life is worth a bushel of learning.”

To the mystics, character is their invaluable asset. Genius commands admiration. But, what is it that commands respect?

A man may be very rich, but it is not necessary, that he may be kept in respect by others. There may be a leader, who may be praised, but not necessarily respected. There may be an officer, who may be feared, but not respected.

It is, in fact, character, which commands respect.

What is character after all? Character has been defined as “one of the greatest motive powers in the world”.

Wealth has nothing to do with the elevation of character. High and noble character does not depend upon the acquisition of knowledge and learning. In fact, “Intellectual culture has no necessary relation to purity or excellence of character.”

Genius commands admiration, character secures respect. Genius is a product of brain-power, whereas character is a product of heart-power.

In all countries and in all ages, men of genius are admired, but men of character are followed. The fact is, that it is heart, which in the long run, rules in life.

A man should not be judged by his material possessions, but by his ideals, ideas, purpose and by his outlook on life.

A mystic is primarily an introvert. He abhors fame and does not care for name, Sanctity and piety cannot seduce him.

To be good in one thing. It is, indeed, good. But to do good is another thing.

It is undoubtedly, better.

The pious run after piety. The virtuous seek salvation.

The learned want learning. The holy ones extol virtue.

But the mystics seek Grace, Love, Pleasure, and Nearness of His, Who is their Beloved.

“Thy will be done” is their Beloved.

” Thy will be done” is their watchword.

Hafiz says very aptly:


“The Pious desired the wine of Kausar,

and hafiz the cup (of love):

Let us see, Between the two,

What the choice of the omnipotent is likely to be.”

A mystic is a person of integrated thought. The pattern of his integrated thought makes him a person of integrated personality. His positive approach towards life adds lustre to his inner life, and thus, he comes to possess and exhibit the priceless virtues of contentment, hope, belief and faith.

He composite personality denounces division and separation, and announces the coming of the Friend to take His Abode in his heart.

A mystic is endowed with creative insight. His consciousness extends beyond rational consciousness.

Once a mystic is initiated in the mystic order, he takes his own place, and bids farewell, willingly, to the world of history and time. He has found his place in the world of eternity and timelessness.

To him his spiritual guide is the director, teacher and preacher at the same time. His world is law. The silken chords of love and devotion, bind the two together. The displeasure of the spiritual guide is fatal for the spiritual disciple.

The disciple is the beneficiary of the blessings of his spiritual guide. Through his kindness and attention, he the disciple, comes to acquire and extension of normal consciousness, the awakening of latent powers and the widening of vision.

Armed thus, he furnishes vital driving force to society and acts as an harbinger of better morals, better manners, better norms and better standards, in other words, of better life. He constitutes the backbone of society.

A mystic is not to be judged by his external life, for we do not know what he has within. Hafiz, thus implores:

” Regard not his (Hafiz’s) external poverty; for it is, That Hafiz’s heart is the treasury of the love of his.”


To a mystic, every moment of life is precious. Life is not meant to be wasted Hafiz says:

“Hafiz! permit not to pass life in folly vain, Strive and know the value of dear life now and again.”

The mystic states

Once a person has been initiated in a mystic order, he is said to have taken a “new birth”. There are certain signposts on the Mystic Path, which is the Path of self-illumination.

Egocentric life has pitfalls. It should be given up. Union with the Godhead is necessary. One should be prepared for asceticism. Detachment leads to inner illumination. Renunciation of the things of sense is conductive to perfection. Renunciation implies not to desire anything, not to ask for anything, not to aspire for anything, not to keep anything and not to long for anything. In other words,

The mystic states

Once a person has been initiated in a mystic order, he is said to have taken a “new birth”. There are certain signposts on the Mystic Path, which is the Path of self-illumination.

Egocentric life has pitfalls. It should be given up. Union with the Godhead is necessary. One should be prepared for asceticism. Detachment leads to inner illumination. Renunciation of the things of sense is conductive to perfection. Renunciation implies not to desire anything, not to ask for anything, not to aspire for anything, not to keep anything and not to long for anything. In other words, if you want anything,Want nothing.

If you want to possess anything,

Possess nothing.

If you want to be attached to anything,

Be attached to nothing.

If you want to rely on anything,

Rely on nothing.

In short, “Nothing”, should be replaced for “Anything”.

The result of the end of egocentric life, asceticism, detachment and renunciation of the things of sense is the loss of ‘Self’, and the gradual realization of the immanence of the temporal in the eternal and of the eternal in the temporal and the growing awareness of the phenomenal world of matter and individual consciousness as being only a partial reality, which is a manifestation of Divine Glory.

If we go a little more minutely and carefully through the edicts, we find it written, that, give your Thoughts to the Supreme Reality;

Hands to sublime deeds;

Eyes to the Manifestation of Divine Glory;

Life to His Remembrance;

Mind to all;

Inner experience to none;

Heart to the One;

Smile to everyone; and

Inner experience to none.

Footprints

Right use of energy, intelligence and talent is strength. The building blocks are within you. Search and find them.

Self-help is conducive to personality development. Do not be half-alive and half-dead.

Joy of creative living comes from work, duty and service, and by making fuller use of your potentialities.

Undertake your own renovation first before you renovate your residence.

Give dynamic orientation to your life.

Make your appraisals and effect your won changes.

No one can solve your problems for you. You have to do it yourself.

Adjustment means the insight to understand yourself and the world you live in.

Contentment is compensation for sorrow.

Silence is conducive to inner harmony.

The desire for seclusion is the beginning of wisdom.

Opportunity is the appearance of the Angel of Help.

Envy is self-imposed punishment.

Jealousy is to be in a jail of your own creation.

A greed man is ever in want.

To be charitable is to be Godly.

Simplicity is ideal beauty.

Consistency is harmony in thought, world and deed.

Obedience to Divine Will makes a man free from worry, care, fear, and anxiety.

Knowledge is a search for self-perfection.

Anger is an occasional fit of madness

Sorrow, Suffering and Pain act as your stern teachers.

Waste of time does not admit of any compensation.

Be your own friend.

Idleness is slow poisoning.

Attachment to worldly pleasures should be capable of detachment.

Generosity generates goodwill.

Success is the child of positive thinking.

See the mark and see the ball and hit.

Do not demand certainty.

Control of mind is freedom.

Control of tongue is safety.

A wise man conquers not only his enemies, but also himself.

Enlarge the horizons of your living through the fuller use of the power within.

A mystic finds his joy in the pleasure of his Friend.

Remembrance is the supreme expression of love. A mystic loves his Friend beyond words. He is not willing to forget Him even for a short time, for that to him is death. He is ever, absorbed and engaged in the remembrance of his Friend. It is as it should be.

The greatest tribute to Love is, in fact, Remembrance.


 

 

I ask Thee to give me Thy grace;

I ask Thee to show me Thy face.

 

I ask Thee to save me from sorrow;

Let it be Today and Tomorrow.

 

I ask Thee to enable me to serve;

The poor and the destitute who deserve.

 

I ask Thee to give me confidence and courage;

Let nothing retard, prevent to hinder.

 

I ask Thee to show me the Straight Way;

The way of those who remember Thee night and day.

 

I ask Thee to make me an instrument of Thy will;

And make my heart pure and mind still.

 

I, the unlettered, the untutored without skill;

Be ever prepared to submit to Thy will.

 

 


 

This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

The mystic insight into death.

I summon you to the Mansion of Love, where minds are united and where sorrow is unknown.

The society of Mystics, as you know, is a voluntary association, composed of those persons, who have chosen to follow its aims and objects. It cannot bring any coercion. It is incapable of any legal sanction. It is for the members to exhibit the underlining idea of the Society in their everyday life and in their day-to-day conduct.

Sands of time

We try to glorify God by our prayers and supplications. It is a good way, no doubt. I do not deny it. But, the best way to glorify God, is by offering Him our Thanksgiving. This requires stable mind, sublime thoughts, good actions, and above all, the spirit of cheerfulness.

Cheerfulness should be distinguished from mirth. Mirth is a passing phase. It comes and goes. It does not last long, whereas cheerfulness is lasting. It is a way of looking at things and happenings.

Mirth is an act, whereas cheerfulness is a habit of mind. Troubles come to every man. To suffer is the lot of man. Troubles, tribulations and trials, if received cheerfully and borne patiently, lose half their intensity, vigour and force.

Cheerfulness is born of optimism. It is foolish to worry about the future, which is unborn. You do not know what is in the womb of time. Why feel worried about it? Hope for the best. It is just possible, that the Future may bring for you something, which you were looking for. Why have morbid imagination? Why have pessimistic outlook?

It is neither wisdom nor foresight, to take a telescope to see things which are dimly at a distance. It is enough, if you see things, which lie close at hand.

Dr Samuel Johnson, whose biography, written by Boswell, I often read, has very aptly observed:

“The habit of looking on the best side of every event is worth more than a thousand pounds a year.”


Mournful Chants

I went through a period of some bereavements in my family which cast me in gloom. It was the first case of anguishing separation, which I experienced in my life. I felt myself helpless to prevent this catastrophe. A strange feeling overtook me. It was a mixed one.It was feeling of helplessness, combined with sorrow which knew no bounds. Death does not grant time.Once it comes, it does not go empty-handed.When I was thus plunged in sorrow, my cheerful disposition did not desert me. I implored for peace and patience. And I was given serenity of mind and calmness of thoughts.

Sorrow taught me a new lesson, that in the face of helplessness, patience was best. Sorrow gave me a new experience, and it was that we should live in this world,as if it is an inn, or a hotel, or a waiting room at some railway station. We should be ever prepared to move on, and on, to our destined goal, which is no other than the grave, where we are buried, or the crematorium, where a dead person is burnt.

Sorrow, also, gave me a new knowledge of this short lived life, And it was, that life was fleeting and nothing was lasting. We should be a little careful. We should not hope too much, and neither we should pitch our hopes too high.

Too many, and too high hopes, end in frustration, leading to loss of faith.

Sorrow took me to explore the mystery of life and death. I pondered over the helplessness of man, his ignorance of himself, his lack of self-knowledge and his wanderings in the labyrinth of time.

The truth dawn upon me that, in life we should be ever prepared for surprises.

Death does not come by appointment.

Everyone of us is an actor. We have to play our assigned part on the stage of the world, and, then, retire into oblivion

People are afraid of death because it is shrouded in mystery.

Like time and tide, death waits for no man. It may come at any moment, at any time and at any place. So, it is better to be ever prepared for death. The knock of death is not heard.

We see flowers blossoming, giving fragrance and then withering. Withering implies the death of a flower. But, for flowers there is a time, when they become withered.

Leaves of trees fall in Autumn. The sun sets in one direction and at a time fixed.

The moon appears and disappears at a time fixed.

The twinkling starts have their settings regulated and fixed. but, man, the vicegerent of God on earth, has no time fixed, when he will have to leave the stage of the world, where he has been acting for a long or a short time, where he had been playing different roles, and where he had been assuming different professional names and different vocational nomenclatures.

Statement of truth

People are afraid of death, as children are afraid of going into a dark room. The mystics are not afraid of death. The love of their Friend has made them unmindful of death. Every lover wants to be united with his beloved.

The mystics are so much engrossed and absorbed in the Absolute Beauty, that the attractions of the world has ceased to attract them.

What counts to a mystic is his Friend, the vision of the Friend, and the nearness of Friend leading to the ultimate union with the Friend.

A mystic has his Friend as the object of his veneration and adoration. His joy lies in meeting the Friend.

Death, to the mystic, furnishes an occasion for being united with the Friend. The day of death, thus, is a day of rejoicing for a mystic. It is, as if, it is a day of wedding for the mystic.

A mystic is always prepared to welcome death. He keeps himself in readiness to meet his Friend.

It is said of a certain illuminated person, that when he fell ill and all hope of recovery was lost, he was told of the approaching death. The man promptly replied:

“O, no I am not the least afraid of death. Why should I fear it? How nice it is to meet death. Death will take me to the one, who always stood by me through thick and thin, and who has been bestowing His favours upon me irrespective of my transgressions.”

The Sufi saint Hazrat Ahmed Bin Khizaria (R.A) was asked some questions when he was bout to die. He apologized by saying:

“I crave your indulgence. Please, leave me to myself. You cannot imagine my mood of expectancy. For the last ninety-five years, I have been knocking, and now, that door will open soon. I can ill afford any disturbance now. I do not know what is in store for me.

I do not know what it will bring. Whether it will bring the glad tidings of heaven, or the bad news of hell. I have no time left. I have no leisure. I cannot now answer your questions.”


Of another Sufi saint, named Abu Wasi, it is said, that seeing him sinking his wife began to shed tears. The saint seeing this, said to his wife,

“Listen to me. Do not weep for my sake. Weep for thy sake. So far as I am concerned, I tell you frankly, that I have been weeping for the last thirty years for this day to come.”


According to the mystics, man is living in darkness. The world thrives on his foolishness and lack of wisdom. Had he been wise, he would not have given his heart to the world.

Love of the world prompts fear of death.

The mystics hold, that the world is a dream. So long as we are in this world, we are said to be in a dream. We will wake up from the dream in the world Hereafter. This period of sleeping in dream and awakening in the world Hereafter , is a transitory period. Death likes in-between this period.

Death, thus, is a bridge. taking us from the world of dream to the world of Reality. Friends, power, prestige, wealth, treasure and influence are helpless before death. They are incapable of saving an individual from death.

Death takes its own course, when it wills.

The glamour and gaiety of the world, derive charm and attraction, from the people who are unmindful of death.

Death is forgotten when world is worshipped.

What are those things, which make one forget death. They are, undoubtedly, wealth, material possessions, lust, and family.

The one who loves Mammon, loves the world. And the one who loves God, death is dear to him.

A mystic keeps the idea of death uppermost in his mind.

To a mystic, the thought of death frees him from the attachment of the world. When he finds that attachment of the world is trying to take him in its grip, he concentrates this thought and attention upon death, and thus, escapes from the approaching spiritual suicide.

The mystic code of life lays down certain guidelines. Life is a bubble. It is short. It is not wise to be attached to it. It is not good to be proud of this short life. It is better to provide for life Hereafter.

If one forgets death, he cannot provide for life Hereafter.

The question arises, how to remember death. The mystics suggest, that constant remembrance of death is possible, when one does not love the world.

For this, one has to wipe out the carnal self.

One has to learn a great deal from the death of relations and friends. Those who were enjoying honour and fame, are now lying in grave.

It is not wise to fix worldly hopes on wealth and treasure.

Graveyards should be visited, so that one may learn that the silent city is the work of death.

A visit to the hospital to see the ailing patients, is also rewarding. Not only does it evoke sympathy for those in trouble, but it also minimizes the attachment of the world, and gives a fillip, though it be temporary, to the remembrance of death.

The holy Prophet Mohammed (Peace be upon them) has enjoined us to think of death. Tradition runs thus:

“Think oftener of death since it saves thee and purifies thee from sins.”

So long as the world looks better, death appears dreadful. To think of death is to lose the love of the world. To fix attention on God is to be detached from the world.

The reality

A certain person went to see a saint. The man expressed his desire to meet another saint, who was living at some distance. The saint said to the man:

“I am sorry to inform you that the saint whom you want to see, is dead.”

The man was sorry to hear it. He said, then, he would like to go to the house of the saint to offer his condolences. Taking leave of the saint, with whom he was talking, he reached the house of the saint, who was pronounced dead.

He was greatly surprised to see the saint hail and hearty.

The man had his eyes fixed on the saint. He was dumbfounded. The feelings of doubt and diffidence, combined with surprise, had landed him in strange situation.

The saint, seeing him in a state of amazement, thus asked him, “Why are you so amazed? What has surprised you? Tell me. Let me see whether I can solve your difficulty.”

The man narrated what he had heard from the saint, whom he had visited first, and said that he had come there with the intention of offering condolences, and was surprised to find him [the saint] alive. He paused and then in a low subdued tone said:

“How is it that, that saint gave me wrong information? I have been reposing my confidence in him, and believing always what he said. How can he tell a lie? I cannot reconcile myself with this idea.”

Hearing this, the saint consoled him and said to him in a soft voice and gentle tone thus:

“You need not be confused. Seeing your emotional agitation, I am constrained to say, that the saint who told you that I was dead, was correct. Inf fact, at that time when he told you that I was dead, I was engrossed in worldly ideas, forgetting the remembrance of God. What will you call a man, who has forgotten the remembrance of God? Is he dead or alive? He cannot be alive. He is dead, of course.”

According to a Tradition, when the Angel of Death came to prophet Abraham to take his life, he thus said to him:

” Have you ever seen a friend, who takes the life of his friend?”

The Angel of Death was ordered by God to say:

” Have you ever seen a friend who hesitates to meet his friend?”

Hearing what the Angel of Death said, Prophet Abraham said to the angel,

“Now take my life.”

Death, being an occasion of meeting the Friend, is fervently greeted by the mystics.

To them, to be truthful means to express a desire for death. Those who die for Truth, occupy a different position.

The martyrs,as they are called, enjoy a higher position than the ordinary people.

Suicide is condemned as cowardice. It is treated as against the spirit of religion. It is not only immoral, but also antisocial.

LAST WORDS

The first word that Lord Jesus Christ uttered on the cross was:

“Father forgive them; for they know not what they do. “

The second world was:

“To-day shalt thou be with Me in paradise.”

The third word was

“Woman behold thy son.”

The fourth word was:

“My God, My God, why has Thou forsaken Me.”

The fifth word was:

“I thirst.”

The sixth word was :

“It is finished.”

The seventh and the last word was:

“Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit.”

The historic words, which the famous Sufi saint Mansur Hallaj uttered before being crucified are:

“And these Thy servants who are gathered to slay me,in zeal for Thy religion and in desire to win They favour, forgive them O Lord, and have mercy upon them…”

Implications

Death is not a monster nor something dreadful. It is a bridge leading into the Beloved.

The Sufi saints emphasize that it is better to die before physical death. A seeker should be like a dead body. The dead body is looked after by those living. The dead body is given a bath by the living person. It is shrouded in a coffin by those living. It is laid in the grave again by living persons. A dead body has nothing to do.

A seeker should be dead to the world before he meets his physical death.

This requires self-control, spirit of self-surrender and self-discipline.

The inevitable hours

The day may come soon or late, when the grate Landlord will terminate our tenancy, and ask us to quit what we have been occupying, and shift to a country from which nobody returns.

The Angel of Death will come to us some day. We should be prepared for that day to receive him. Let us receive him cheerfully.

The moment cannot be averted, when the Angel of Death will come and demand back the loan of life. We should repay it with added interest, of good actions and noble deeds, and give it back with cheerfulness characterized by grace and manifested by perspiration on the forehead and smile on the lips.


The smile of the flower this one thing shows;

That its life is short and now it goes;

Man comes and departs with all the woes;

But when and where this no one knows.

..Unknown

This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

The thought pattern of the mystics.

Praise be to God, Who has enabled me to talk to you once again. I feel better, happier and strong again. I feel better, happier and stronger after my recent illness, which was termed by some as very serious, and by others, as a fatal malady, which threatened to cut short my days of life.

I find myself filled once again with an abundant supply of life’s creative forces. I have renewed vigour, vitality, force and enthusiasm, and may I say, that I have a desire to meet you, to talk to you, to exchange ideas and greetings with you.

I assure you, that during all this time, I was with you.It is true, that I was not with you physically. But it is equally true, that I was with you in thought. Thought often took me to distant lands, and far-off countries, where some of you live and work.

Thought travels at a tremendous speed, which no jet can compete with.

It was a pleasure for me, indeed, that thought took me to your doorstep.As soon as I entered in, I found some of you, sitting by the fireside, engaged in talk, and I found some of you seeing the television and enjoying the cricket match, or some feature or documentary film. I met some of you in a scented garden, where you had been for a stroll.

I met some of you, returning home after the day’s toil and trial, and narrating with some sense of satisfaction, the short and simple triumphs of the day. When you were narrating those tales of wonder and excitement, it appeared to me that you looked like a hero, or may I say, a conqueror, just returned from the battlefield after wining a victory over odds, just for a day.

I assure you, that each day is a life in itself, and if you make right use of the day, you make right use of life.

But, I am a little sorry to say, that I found some of you,who appeared to be dismayed, downcast, and desperate.

Why are they desperate: Why have they lost interest in life? Why have they lost zest for life? Why is life an endless agony, as a dark night to them? The reply is not far to seek. Their negative thoughts, like scorpions, are tormenting them. If they change the trend of their thinking. I am sure, they will be able to change their mode of life.

The fact is that, we have an outward life, and we have inward life. Our outward life is dependent upon our inward life. The saints and the mystics have emphasized the importance of a better type of inward life.

There can be no doubt,that outward life is a reflection of inward life.

The saints and the mystics first cleaned and purified their thought, in order to get a better and positive type of inward life, and they, thus, renewed a right spirit within.


“As you sow, so shall you reap.”

Is an old adage. Likewise, we can say that as you think, so you become. If you sow the seed of positive thought, you will reap a rich harvest of a better and nobler life.

The dominating thought habits of the mystics constitute the spirit of mysticism.

What the modern man has forgotten to his own detriment is the value of the art of positive thinking.

To a mystic, his positive thoughts are his best equipment. They are, in fact, a cause of inspiration and strength to him.

The principle of cause and effect governs our thinking also. If we think positively, we live happily. If we think positively, we live successfully. Our thinking makes us a conqueror or conquered. Positive thinking gives added energy, stamina and strength.

In other words, positive thinking will make our personality positive. giving us the joy of living, and giving others, at the same time, the benefit of our positive suggestions, But, if on the other hand, we have, unfortunately, allowed ourselves to be besieged by negative thoughts, we are not the only person to suffer, but others who come in contact with us also suffer. We make our life as well as the life of others, chaotic and miserable.

Negative thoughts lend a negative complex and colour to our life. They make our life a burden, and a source of private nuisance to others.

From what I have said above, it is evident that thought control is of vital importance.

Thoughts control implies self-control. Self -control implies self-discipline. Self-discipline means a trained mind, disciplined habits, self-respect, mutual-respect, self-knowledge, self-reverence, balanced judgement, harmony and the spirit of toleration.

Self-discipline points to the desire of an individual to rule over himself and to govern himself, which means, that he has come to assume the power of a sovereign, and now, he at last, wears the crown, studded not with diamonds and precious stones, but with the invaluable virtue of self mastery.

Self-mastery, let me tell you, implies a positive mental attitude, which is of great use and consequence. It is a trusted friend, a good companion, and a reliable guide.

The positive mental attitude is the creation of positive thoughts. Thoughts is important. It is said, that thought rules the world. Such being the case, it is necessary then, that we should cultivate positive thoughts.

Our positive thought is our humble contribution to the welfare, advancement, peace, prosperity and happiness of mankind.

The way to get a good life is to be armed with good thought. By good life is meant a life of virtue and happiness. Good thoughts imply positive thoughts.

Spiritual life is not merely the practice of penances and asceticism, but the cultivation of positive thoughts- thoughts of love,kindness, sympathy, and service.

Right thinking precedes right action. Right action precedes right living. Right living exhibits the spirit of compromise, thankfulness, gratitude, contentment, and above all, the spirit of self-control.

To give a good thought to someone is better than to offer him a precious gem.

A good thought is like the fragrance of a flower. It is capable of giving new dimension to our life.

A good thought is a grace and a blessing. We should welcome a good thought as we welcome a guest.

Man is responsible for his own misfortune. He himself invites trials and tribulations. He gets what he thinks. He reaps as he sows. His outward life is determined and planned for him by his inward life. Inward life is the result of his thoughts. If he holds the positive thoughts of courage, determination, cheerfulness, mercy, generosity, patience, perseverance, love, forgiveness and hope, he will exhibit the same qualities in his outward life.

On the other hand, if a person holds the negative thoughts of hatred, revenge and malice, he exhibits the same traits in his outward life.

The fact is that an individual becomes that upon which he concentrates most.

An individual’s self-image is carved out by his thoughts

The thoughts of fear and of illness, and , in fact, all negative thoughts are more dangerous than snakes and scorpions. They are like wild beasts, and as you know, we should keep ourselves from them at a safe distance.

People have fear of death, of loss of livelihood, fear of loss in business, fear of being criticized, fear of failure, and above all the fear of losing popularity and affluence.

Such fears are imaginary fears. they have no leg to stand upon. Once the thought of these fears is magnified and concentrated upon for long,they become a reality. such abnormal fears should be resisted.

Thought of illness is suicidal and dangerous. Health implies harmony. The negative thoughts disturb harmony, and bring about ill-health and physical trouble.

Those, who cherish and nourish negative thoughts for long,become peevish and are deprived of hope- hope for a better life, better living, better business and better time. Sometimes, it so happens that they meet a premature death.

Negative thoughts create excitement. The excitement, so caused, has a great bearing on life. Besides other things, like indigestion, insomnia, and rheumatism, the breathing becomes swift, with the result that life becomes short.

Health depends upon positive thoughts . What is health after all? Health is a delicate fabric. Health is harmony and adjustment. When the mind, body, spirit and soul work coherently, the result is health. Once, the harmony is disturbed, the result is illness.

Inner conflicts brings diseases. Our mind rules our body. Disease and health derive their source from our thoughts. Thought of disease leads to disease. Thought of health keeps us healthy. High blood pressure is a common disease,which is a creation of the age of Anxiety. Those who live in confrontation and tension, suffer from high blood pressure.

Tension is brought about by thought. Thoughts of resentment, revenge, malice and envy affect the body in such a way, that it is deprived of the power of resistance.

Thoughts of anxiety and worry sap the energy and render the body weak.

Thoughts of fear are just enough to shoot a man down. He does not require any bullet, or a sword to be wounded or killed.

Negative thoughts, impure thoughts, and selfish thoughts create blood poisoning.

Thoughts of fear, of doubt, of diffidence, and indecision do not give anything except pessimism, and loss of hope.

Hence, to be healthy and successful, it is necessary, that we first conquer fear, doubt and diffidence.

Guidelines

Positive thoughts give coherence and fundamental unity to life, with the result, that an individual, entertaining positive thoughts,leads a placid, calm and serene life. His life is not disturbed by outer distractions. He enjoys peace and tranquility of mind.

When the procession of life is orderly, marked by serenity and tranquility, then the powers which lie dormant and passive in an individual, become awakened and alive. He then receives intuition, inspiration and welcome manifestation. He begins to lead a creative life and living by which, not only he is benefited but others too derive benefit from his thoughts.

A person of positive thinking is like a bright lamp, shedding light all around.

If we have positive thoughts, we may not stop the tempest or avert the storm, but, we can at least, save the boat from being drowned.

Failure and success are the result of thought. Our thought pattern determines the pattern of our life. In other words, the pattern of our life is carved for us by our thoughts.

Achievement is the reward of concentrated positive thought. A well-directed thought, coupled with resolution, determination and perspiration, can secure for us our object, which we want to achieve.

If we sincerely desire a thing, we shall get it. If we aspire for a thing, we shall achieve it.

Happiness is an achievement. Good life is an achievement. But, they cannot be achieved without good and intense positive thoughts.

Our thoughts spin and weave the garment of our outer life. Outward life is a reflection of our inward life, and inward life is what it has been made by our thought pattern.

A man’s character is manifested in his thoughts. What his thoughts are, that is his character. What his character is, that he is, in fact.

Thus thought is destiny.

The mystics had their thoughts and attention ever fixed upon higher aims and objects, and better ideas and ideals.

It has been said that ” Resist not evil”. If we concentrate our thoughts on evil, then evil will be actualized and made real. So, as Tennyson says:

“Think well! Do well will follow thought, And in the fatal sequence of this world,An evil thought may soil thy children’s blood;But curb the beast that would cast thee in the mire, And leave the hot swamp of voluptuousness, A cloud between the Nameless and thyself.”

Our mind is a garden, and we are the gardener. Our life is a little Joint-Stock Company, and we are the Managing Director.

The thought forces mould and shape character. Man is a creative force and a power. Out of our thoughts,grow circumstances. Our thought-forces attract the things, that we most love and cherish.

With every good positive thought, there comes the seed of opportunity.

Opportunity changes circumstance.

The fact is,that an individual attracts that only, which he is.He does not attract that which he wants.

You may have read “Macbeth”,written by Shakespeare.

It is a famous tragedy.
Macbeth asks the question:

“Canst thou not minister to a mind diseased,
Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
Raze out the written troubles of the brain, And with some sweet oblivious antidote
Cleanse, the stuffed bosom of that perilous stuff Which, weigh upon the heart?”

And do you know what is the reply? It is :

“Therein the patient must minister to himself.”

People in modern times are asking the same question:

“canst thou not minister to a mind diseased?”

The answer is the same. It is obvious and simple. You must look to yourself. You yourself are your physician. You yourself are the architect of the edifice of your life. Do not look to external help. Help yourself. You alone can reform yourself. You alone can shake off your negative thoughts and replace them by positive thoughts.

Thus, thereby, you can have calm thoughts. Your positive thoughts will give you faith and a radiant personality.

They will stimulate your will, kindle your imagination, and inspire you with new ideas. They will give you a new hope and a reborn assurance. They will rekindle new aspirations.

Intelligence should be rightly used. That intelligence is best, which teaches us to avoid failure. Once we have learnt to rise above failures, we have unfolded a great mystery. Let us learn to avoid the things which lead to the narrow and deep pit of failure. You must not allow, then the loss of hope.

Feelings of loneliness, uncertainty, insecurity, anger, resentment, inferiority and indecision, should be resisted and overcome.

” Let each man learn to know himself. To gain that knowledge let him labour. Correct, those failing in himself Which he condemns, so in his neighbour.”

It has been said that a man is known by the company he keeps. If a person keeps company with feelings, which do more harm than good, he will be known as an embodiment and an emblem of those feelings. Thus, he will be known by his enemies more than by his friends, who are the feelings of love, tolerance, disinterested service and optimism.

The eminent French philosopher montaigne has very aptly said that:

” A man is not hurt so much by what happens as by his opinions of what happens.”

We may form any opinion that we may like. But, before we do so, we should realize our responsibility and the consequences.

Pure thoughts are necessary for self-awareness. Self-awareness is the hallmark of a trained mind and a cultured man.

Confrontation, in whatever shape or form or guise it may appear, is sure to deprive an individual of the sense of proportion and perspective. But, self-confrontation will be a dismal failure, if it is not factual and is not backed by sincerity.

Help comes from various sources, and it comes in different guises. It may assume the form of advice, or sympathy, guidance and encouragement. Advice and guidance date back from time immemorial. The doctor and the lawyer give professional advice to their patient and their client receptively. The spiritual guide extends specific advice to his spiritual disciples. The priest gives advice from the pulpit, and the politician exhorts the people from the platform. The expert in any field is also liberal in his advice.

But, the fact is that no amount of exhortation and advice and counselling and guidance and encouragement and sympathy will do you any good permanently, unless you yourself are willing and prepared to change your thought pattern and your feelings.

The mystics have controlled their thoughts. They do not allow their mind to wander. They do not allow the thoughts, that they do not like, to enter their mind. You can do the same.

Suggestions

Perhaps, you want to know, as to how you can change your thoughts, and how you can have vibrating, illuminating and inspiring positive thoughts, which will give you power to change the circumstance. Thoughts, which will serve as a soothing balm, protecting you from confrontation, and shielding you from tension, and the thoughts, which will give you the wings to fly.

The first and foremost thing is that you must know the method, which I prefer to call the Law of Substitution. Substitution is as important as discretion. Discretion means, that out of two things, one must pick up the one, and leave the other. It also means, that out of two situation, in which a person finds himself to be, he may prefer one to the other. Substitution means, that out of two things, one thing should be taken out and the other placed in its place.

Acting on the Law of Substitution, we should transmute any negative thought into its positive opposite thought.

Thus, thoughts of hate and dislike should be transmuted into thoughts of love and goodwill.

Thoughts of fear should be replaced by the thoughts of confident trust, and that of poverty into abundance, and that of evil into good.

Thoughts of egoism should be transmuted into the thought of altruism. Thought of selfishness should be replaced by the thought of kindness, and thought of revenge should be transmuted into the thought of forgiveness.

Thoughts of indecision and infatuation can be overcome by the exercise of discretion. The thought of vanity should be replaced by the thought of simplicity.

Once you have learnt to change the thought pattern, you have, indeed, discovered the fountain of happiness, bliss and peace, flowing within you. It requires an effort. Thus, you should try to transmute the thought of gloom into cheerfulness. Thoughts of anxiety and worry should be replaced by the inspiring thoughts of inner satisfaction and inner certainty.

The thought of anger should be replaced by the thought of self-control. The thought of cruelty should give place to the thought of mercy.

In short, negative thoughts and negative feelings should be replaced, dislocated or displaced by substituting their opposite.

The Law of Substitution helps us to entertain counter thoughts. When you are seized or besieged by tormenting thoughts, negative thoughts, negative feelings, and by the thoughts you do not want to entertain, then leave your bed, or your table or your room and go out to some garden, or to some park, or fountain, or to some place offering natural beauty. Enjoy the fresh air, and see the flowers smiling, and hear the birds, singing on the trees. you may walk or sit on the carpet of green grass.

You may also, on such occasions, engage yourself in some hobby, in which you feel deeply interested. You may play games or you may go out for boating. You may start reading a book of poetry, or some other book, or you may read some religious book. You may also begin to pray.
You may sing some beautiful song, or you may hear music.

Meditation is another way of driving out bad thoughts. Do one thing at a time, and have one thought at at time. Relax you body and mind.

Have a compartmental mind and open the cupboard of the mind, giving you good thoughts, and close the cupboard of the mind giving you bad thoughts, at your sweet will.

Take the Universe as your own, and love it, and also love the animals, and the birds, and love also the trees, the plants and the shrubs.

Do not be over ambitious. Curtail your desires. Try to have good company, good friends and good associates. Ignore the trifles of life. Do not be over sensitive. Do not feel too much. If yo do not feel, you will feel that nothing has happened

Avoid arguments and discussions. Concentrate your thoughts on lofty aims and ideals and higher pursuits. Be by yourself everyday for some time. Be interested in people, and in the environment, in which you live and work.

Let thoughts of happiness, prosperity, and progress, Divine Grace, thankfulness, and gratitude be your constant companions.

Do not concentrate upon an undesirable thought for long, and the thought will die out itself. Do not allow wandering thoughts to enter your mind, and once they have entered, do not allow them to stay in your mind. For this, it is necessary, that you should practise concentration. You may also have recourse to meditation.

Signposts

Latent power lies hidden within us. Let us discover it, find it, and seize it. We are capable of making our life interesting, successful, happy and useful. The saints and the mystics, by their precept and practice, have shown, that lofty, noble, illuminating and inspiring thoughts, can alone give peace of mind, so very necessary for a good life.

There flowed powerful waves of positive thoughts from the convent, monastery and retreat of the saints and the mystics, giving to and conferring upon the people, a positive approach to life and inner peace. Let the same flow from you, from your bedchamber, antechamber, and from your drawing room and dining room, rendering people better and richer, and making the world a happy heaven of repose.

Do not carry a heavy burden upon your shoulders. It will do you no good. Forget the burden of the worries of Yesterday. Ignore the cares of Tomorrow. Just learn to love int he Present.

In the interest of better living, in the interest of world peace, in the interest of social harmony, in the interest of universal brotherhood and fellow feelings, in the interest of world solidarity, and in the interest of national integration and friendly international relations, we should try to mould and shape our life in accordance with the pattern of life and thought of the saints and the mystics. Of course we can. And we must.


Suffering and sickness do not bind, Jolly and Gay, I myself find; The troubles around, I do not mind, I know, I know, god is Just and Kind.


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

The Mystic Law and practice of self-surrender

Suffering is also a phase of life. It is of great consequence. A mystic treats suffering as a gift, coming from the Friend. As we prize a gift given by someone, likewise, the mystics prize suffering.

To be patient and preserving in suffering is the crucial test of the character of a person. When God Almighty, in His Discretion, wants to test us, He sends suffering.

To Suffer is the human lot, but to bear it with fortitude, patience, and courage requires the high watermark of human endeavour and perseverance.

Our faith is not a lamp meant to shine in dark nights only. When the lamp of life is shining, and it has dispelled darkness, even then, we require guidance and sympathy and faith.

Religion is a pick-me-up in times of stress and storm. It gives courage and extends sympathy to those besieged by suffering and sorrow. Every religion has words of comfort. Every religion. has in it, the heart-beat of Divine love.

When those whom we love, leave us permanently, we, of course, feel the pangs of separation. No doubt it is sad, but, there is not way out. It has been rightly said, that “what cannot be cured must be endured”.

Death is inevitable. It must come to everyone sooner or later. And,

“Life, like a dome of many colour glass,

stains the white radiance of eternity,

Until Death tramples it to fragments.”


Life is brief and transitory. The sea of life, is sometimes boisterous and sometimes, calm. When it is boisterous, we should wait, watch and show patience, and when it is calm, we should show utmost gratitude to God Almighty. It has been said, that by offering thanks, the blessings are increased. It is perfectly true. It is like living in a success atmosphere. You must know that like attracts like. Likewise, success attracts success.

Life is a complex phenomenon. It has been said:

“Tomorrow and tomorrow, and tomorrow Creeps in this petty pace from day to day

To the last syllable of recorded time;

And all our yesterdays have lighted fools

The way to dusty death; out, out, brief candle

life’s but a walking shadow; a poor player

That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,

and then is heard no more; it is a tale

Told by and idiot, full of sound and fury signifying nothing.”

In mystic terminology, to be blessed, means in implies to be happy, prosperous and favoured.

It is no doubt true, that, every suffering or unpleasant thing that God Almighty and Merciful, permits to come, and cloud our life, has blessing within it. It is wrapped in it, but, we are not inquisitive to know it or eager to find it.

The things, which we do not like, and which we take as discouragement are, indeed, conductive to higher goals, better ideals and noble attainments.

It is not enough,that we should sit with people in their hour of trial and suffering, and merely sympathize with them. But, what we should do, in fact, is that, we should strengthen those in suffering, so that they may bear and endure their suffering with patience and courage, and with simile on their lips. The best service, that we can render them is, that we should try to so fortify them against discouragement and so strengthen them, as to enable them to score a victory over their sorrow and suffering.

We should be ever conscious of God’s unchanging love. We must believe in the promise of God, and have full and unflinching faith, that whatever happens is for our good. If we believe thus, it will give us comfort and peace.

It is true that,

“Blessed are they that mourn”

And then there is the promise:

“Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted.”

To bear sorrow and suffering without grudge or murmur lends beauty to character and conduct. The fragments of beauty in character and conduct, apparent and real, or hidden and unnoticed, mould and change life in a way and to and extent, that is beyond human under standing. It has its own reward. And, what is the reward? The reward is transfigured life, having within it, balance, judgement, insight, and above all indifference to pain and pleasure. Thus, what is good, true, lovely, beautiful and worthy has come to occupy a place in life.

Sorrow and Suffering are not the things to be dreaded. They, in fact, should be treated as friends. They convey a message- a Divine message.

The dark clouds bring us rain. Rain, in its turn, makes flowers fragrant. Grass is made green. Rain is also useful for crops. Likewise, it can be said of sorrow and suffering that they make the heart sympathetic. They tune the heart, chasten the emotions, purify the sentiments, and thus, give a new colour and content to personality.

With the approach of night, we think, that the time for rest, after the day’s arduous labour, has come at last. But, night,not only furnishes the time for rest, but also enables us to see the shining starts above. The darkness of night brings with it thus the glory of the stars.

Suffering, likewise, has its won reward. It gives us courage, faith, energy, skill and above all, love.

To forget pain, the sorrow and suffering which one may have found himself to be entrenched and wrapped in. It is important that the patient is in the midst of so much love, affection, regard and attention.

The mystics have made experiments with sorrow and suffering. Their experience is that the more one concentrates on sorrow and suffering, the more they become painful. It is better then, to ignore them as far as possible. They should be checked and controlled and should, in no way, be allowed to cast their pernicious shadow upon human life.

Another very potent, plausible and powerful antidote to sorrow and suffering,that the mystics have discovered, is to entrust their affairs to God. They say, let us place all our problems at the feet of the Master, and He shall look after them.

The mystics have learnt not to have any will of their own. Not “I” but “Thou” is their dictum.

They say, that when a drop of water is thrown into a river, the drop loses its identity. The drop becomes a part of the river. It is difficult to distinguish the drop.

The mystic practice, or we may say, the mystic technique of self-surrender, gives force, vigour and stamina to their life. Once they surrender themselves to God, they have ceased to have any will of their own.

The mystics want to die before the actual physical death. Just as a dead body is in the hands of those living, likewise, the mystics treat themselves to be at the mercy of God.

The spirit of self-surrender has taught them to accept everything with a smile. This makes them indifferent towards pain and pleasure, joy and sorrow, poverty and plenty, abuse and praise.

They have ceased to depend upon external life, external means and outward circumstances. They derive strength from within.

The spirit of self-surrender leads them, and guides them to Self-Realization.

Self-Surrender requires Self -Discipline, Self-Control, and Self-Abnegation.

The “I” has ceased to exist. Its place has been taken by “Thou”.

Our lust, avarice and greed, and our very selfishness and desire for acquisition and possession, are the things which keep alive and sustain materialism. They give it fillip, impetus, force and vigour.

Self-Surrender implies, that one has freed himself, and that lust and desire have ceased to be a motive force for him. He is no more kept restless by lust and search for worldly triumphs and successes, and neither is he the least moved by failures.

To rise above success and failure, pain and pleasure, sorrow and suffering constitute what may be termed as the spirit of self-surrender.

Suffering comes in various guises, shapes and forms. There is a lot of bitterness, discord and disruption in everyday life, resulting in a change of normal life and normal behaviour.

Physical suffering can be cured by a surgeon, or a physician, but mental suffering must be cured by the person himself.

Bereavement in the family, bad family life, loss of hope, anxiety, worry, imaginary or real apprehensions and fears, prolonged litigation, meagre resources and maintenance of a large family, taking intoxicating drugs, frequent ailments, etc.., sap the energy and make the resistance-power weak. When the resistance-power is at a low ebb, there is every possibility of a person falling prey to some dreadful disease.

International, national, local and social problems, instead of being discussed, and debated, rationally, and logically, in a clam and peaceful atmosphere, are made a pretext for rousing public sentiments and opinion, and taking the issue to the streets.

Let us conserve energy for constructive work. Let us treat all the happenings, events, accidents and incidents as being directed by an all-powerful Unseen Hand. We should treat them as inevitable. As they are inevitable, there is no way of escape.

“There is Divinity that shapes our end.”

The way to overcome difficulties, hardships, sorrow and suffering, is to be content with what happens and to exhibit the spirit of patience and perseverance in such difficult times. It is better to desire solace and comfort from moral principles and religious injuctions.

Let us avoid, as far as possible, those conditions and things, which bring sorrow and suffering to our doorstep.

The pursuit of greed and avarice results, ultimately, in the loss of energy.

There is a French proverb, which says:

“When all other sins are old, avarice is still young.”

We need not be afraid of affliction, Burton holds that,

“As threshing separates the wheat from the chaff, so does affliction purify virtue.”

Guthrie welcomes affliction and troubles in another sense. He says:

“As in nature, as in art, so in grace: it is rough treatment that gives souls, as well as stones, their lustre. The more the diamond is cut, the brighter it sparkles; and in what seems hard dealing, there God has no end in view but to perfect his people.”

The mystics have shown a marvellous spirit of Self-Surrender in times of difficulty. Instead of resisting the trouble, they have accepted it as coming from the Friend.

Self-Surrender is indeed a powerful weapon, which they mystics use to combat the unpleasant things in life.

Self-Surrender implies a perfect union and oneness with God Almighty. Self-Surrender implies loss of ego. It results in the happy blending of action and inaction.Non-attachment to action or desire results in indifference, making them neither accepted nor rejected.

Self-Surrender implies, that a person has ceased to exert his will, and that he has entrusted himself to the Will of God.

Thus it is, that the replacement of human will by the Divine Will, or we may say, the substitution of the Divine Will for the human will, is what is termed as Self-surrender.

Self-Surrender brings about a noticeable change in human life. Tension and inward conflicts are replaced by harmony and peace. There is light, joy and love in life. The soul has won liberty from the very many limitations. The liberated soul now shows and exhibits consent and will.

Self-Surrender confers grace, bestows enlightenment and gives strength. Once a person takes to Self-Surrender, he draws and attracts to himself everything that is merited, decided and sealed.

Strange to say that, when we are ill, we surrender ourselves to the physician, and when we undergo an operation, we surrender ourselves to the surgeon. When we are involved in litigation, we surrender ourselves to the lawyer, who acts and pleads on our behalf in a court of law .

In other words, in crucial moments of our life, we voluntarily, surrender ourselves to a person, whom we think and suppose to be an expert.

We are content to be guided by his expert advice.But how strange is it, that we hesitate to surrender ourselves to our Creator, who is All-Knowing, All-Powerful and All-Wise.

Indifference towards the world and its problems in the keynote of the life of a mystic.

It has been very aptly said:

“I have not loved the world, nor the world me I have not flattered its rank breath, nor bowed To its idolatries a patient knee, Nor coined my cheek to smile, nor cried aloud In worship of an echo; in the crowd ,They could not deem me one of such; I stood Among them, but not of them.”

It is better, then that we should lead a chaste life. Let us pay due attention to the advice or suggestion, which says:

“Nor love thy life, nor hate; but what thou livest, Live well; how long or short permit to heaven”.

We should not aspire for more.It is enough, if the pattern of our life exhibits Faith, Hope Contentment and Courage, and is fortified by the spirit of Self-Surrender.


This is a series of postings to come, on the subject of Sufi Mysticism. The postings will give in-depth knowledge in the complete world & ultimate sphere of Sufi spirituality. The postings are enlisted in Categories : ‘Sufi’s Spirituality’ (Tasawwuf )  & in ‘Tasawwuf ‘(Path  of Mysticism). Alternatively you can subscribe to our blog for updates.

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