The Teaching of Hazrat Inayat Khan

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In little things of life, one person says, "I do not like to touch vinegar. It hurts my health." One person says, "I cannot bear to eat cream, I cannot digest it"; another person says, "I cannot stand to have sugar in the tea, I do not like it." For him the sugar is a poison. If he took the poison once, the same would become sugar for him. All things that one thinks that they are foreign to his nature, by this he makes his nature exclusive. And by becoming exclusive he makes himself subject to them in a way. There comes a time when they rule him, a situation when he is under them. A person who says, "Bitter quinine, it is too bitter, I cannot stand it" -- he is in a fever, the doctor says he must have it. He dreads having it; at the same time he cannot help it. Therefore the way of Shiva was always to work against one's weaknesses. He counted them as weaknesses, not as nature. "Nature, all is my nature, but what I cannot have, that I make foreign to my nature; if I have separated it, there comes a time perhaps that I become so weak that I cannot help having it." Would you believe that the snake charmers, I have found some of them who have gradually, by making the snakes bite them time after time, developed so that poison does not hurt them. So that when they go, they just catch the snake in their hand; if the snake bites them, it does not hurt them. Shiva is pictured with a cobra round his neck; out of death he has made a necklace; it is no more a death to him.