The Teaching of Hazrat Inayat Khan

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But in order to develop art in the real sense of the word, one need not be an artist, one need not have that particular vocation in life. Whatever be one's vocation, art is necessary just the same. It is wrong to think that art is not needed in one's social or domestic life, in business, in industry, in one's profession. It is because of the division that people have made between art and other walks of life that life has become devoid of beauty. And in this way art has been very much neglected, except by those who pretend to appreciate it and who have perhaps some leisure in which to give thought and time to it. But even they are very often ignorant of the real beauty and value of art; they take an interest in it only because they want to be able to say that they are fond of art. It is because of this that artists sometimes lack the opportunity of expressing their soul through their art, being hampered by this lack of appreciation. Others want to commercialize their art, but art is always above material values. When art has to be limited by material values and by seeking the approbation of those who do not understand it, it has to suffer; instead of evolving it declines. But even in practical life art has great scope. Think for instance how much a woman can do in her everyday life in her home with her artistic gifts. She can make it beautiful and comfortable; she can train her children to have better taste; and whatever her means may be, even her manner can produce beauty, harmony, and happiness in her home. It is the same thing in one's office, in industry, in business, in whatever one does. If there is a regard for beauty and harmony one can make one's own business or profession, one's life and one's work, more beautiful, thereby producing greater happiness for oneself and for others.