The Teaching of Hazrat Inayat Khan      

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Social Gathekas

Religious Gathekas

The Message Papers

The Healing Papers

Vol. 1, The Way of Illumination

Vol. 1, The Inner Life

Vol. 1, The Soul, Whence And Whither?

Vol. 1, The Purpose of Life

Vol. 2, The Mysticism of Sound and Music

Vol. 2, The Mysticism of Sound

Vol. 2, Cosmic Language

Vol. 2, The Power of the Word

Vol. 3, Education

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

Vol. 3, Character and Personality

Vol. 4, Healing And The Mind World

Vol. 4, Mental Purification

Vol. 4, The Mind-World

Vol. 5, A Sufi Message Of Spiritual Liberty

Vol. 5, Aqibat, Life After Death

Vol. 5, The Phenomenon of the Soul

Vol. 5, Love, Human and Divine

Vol. 5, Pearls from the Ocean Unseen

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

Vol. 6, The Alchemy of Happiness

Vol. 7, In an Eastern Rose Garden

Vol. 8, Health and Order of Body and Mind

Vol. 8, The Privilege of Being Human

Vol. 8a, Sufi Teachings

Vol. 9, The Unity of Religious Ideals

Vol. 10, Sufi Mysticism

Vol. 10, The Path of Initiation and Discipleship

Vol. 10, Sufi Poetry

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

Vol. 10, The Problem of the Day

Vol. 11, Philosophy

Vol. 11, Psychology

Vol. 11, Mysticism in Life

Vol. 12, The Vision of God and Man

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

Vol. 12, Four Plays

Vol. 13, Gathas

Vol. 14, The Smiling Forehead

By Date



The Smiling Forehead

The Heart Quality

The Heart - Aphorisms

The Four Paths


The Story of Hatim

The Difference between Will, Wish and Desire

Destiny and Free Will

Free Will and Destiny


Free Will - Aphorisms

The Seer


The Different Stages of Spiritual Development

The Prophetic Tendency - The Prophetic Mission

Points of View held by Spiritual Persons

Higher Spiritualism

The Process of Spiritual Unfoldment

The Awakening of the Soul

Sufi Teachings

The Dance of the Soul

The Deeper Side of Life

Man, the Seed of God

Sufi Philosophy

The Gift of Eloquence

Evolution of the World

Every Man has his own little World


Spirituality, the Tuning of the Heart

Optimism and Pessimism

Conscience - Questions and Answers

Justice and Forgiveness - Questions and answers

Pairs Of opposites used in Religious Terms


The Law of Attraction

The Liberal and the Conservative Point of View

The Law of Life

The Law of Action

The Soul, Its Origin and Unfoldment

The Unfoldment of the Soul

Divine Impulse

The Symbol of the Cross

The Mystical Meaning of the Resurrection

Spiritual Circulation through the Veins of the Universe

The Divine Blood Circulating Through the Veins Of the Universe



Vol. 14, The Smiling Forehead

The Deeper Side of Life

Life can be looked at from two points of view: from the point of view which sees the outline and from the point of view which sees the detail. With the point of view by which one sees the general outline of life one soars upwards continually and one attains to the knowledge of life's synthesis. This is the view of life of the one who is looking from the top of a high mountain. As to the one who sees into life's details, naturally his horizon becomes smaller, his outlook narrower. He makes the analysis of life and so becomes acquainted with the details of life.

The former point of view gives insight into a wider horizon and lifts the consciousness to a higher realization, whereas the latter point of view gives knowledge in the details of life, which one calls learning. Therefore learning is one thing, knowing is another thing. Learning without knowing is incomplete knowledge, knowing without learning is not satisfactory either. The knower can best explain his knowledge if he has learning.

The mystics of all ages have raised their consciousness to view the outline of life in the wide horizon and have felt upliftment being raised high above all the miseries of life. Those who have ever reached that stage of consciousness have only reached it by right meditation under the guidance of masters of spiritual culture.

In these modern times people consider an intellectual life or a life of manual labor a normal life. A practical man is considered a man of common sense, and common sense reaches no further than its limited boundaries. A practical man is the one who knows best how to guard his material interests in the continual struggle of life. Common sense sees no further than it sees. Many call it positivism only to believe in all that proves to be realistic to our higher senses and in all that can be perceived, felt and experienced by our mind.

For this reason, in spite of great and unceasing progress in the material world, we have closed the doors to another world of progress, a progress that can only be made by opening the doors to the deeper side of life. Man, by his form and features, by his physical construction, looks at one side and covers the other side with his own self. Man sees before him, but not behind him. As he is made so by nature and it happens to be his nature, he therefore cannot look into the deeper side while absorbed in the life on the surface.

Since there is faith these days, but absence of inner life, there seems to be a greater need of the inner life than there has ever been before. It is the head quality which is developed and it is the heart quality which needs to be developed in order to bring balance in life. Life, so balanced, is then prepared for the inner culture or spiritual life. Many consider sentiment something quite unimportant, something that should be kept aside from the central theme of life today which is intellectuality. No one who has given a thought to the deeper side of life will deny for one moment the power and inspiration that manifest themselves once the heart is kindled.

A person with heart quality need not be simple, he need not discard intellect; only, the heart quality produces that perfume in the intellect which is as fragrance in a flower. Morals learned from logic are dry morals, a fruit without juice, a flower without fragrance. It is the heart quality that as a course of nature produces virtues which no one can teach; a loving person, a person with sympathy in his heart, teaches morals through himself. It is the balance of mind and heart, or the balance of thought and feeling that makes the ground ready for sowing the seed of the inner life.

There are three steps which one must take in order to come to spiritual life.

The first step is knowledge of the nature and character of man. A seeker takes his first step in the path of truth when he is able to understand his fellow-man fully and when he is able to find the solution to his problems.

The next step is to have insight into the nature of things and beings, to understand cause and effect and to be able to find the cause of the cause and the effect of the effect, to be able to see the reason of the reason and the logic of the logic. When a person is able to see the good of the bad and the bad side of the good, and when he is able to see the wrong side of the right and the right of the wrong, then he has taken the next step on the spiritual path.

The third step is to rise above the pains and pleasures of life, to be in the world and not of the world, to live and not to live at the same time. Such a one becomes a living dead person, in other words: a dead person living for ever. Immortality is not to be sought in the hereafter; if it is ever gained it is gained in one's lifetime. In this third stage of development one is able to attain happiness, power, knowledge, life and peace within oneself, independently of all things outside.

The spiritual knowledge which has always been sought by the wakened souls will always be sought by them. In ancient times the seekers looked for a guide on this path, the guide who initiated them into the mysteries of the deeper side of life, and once the secret was revealed it no longer remained a mystery for them. The man who is not yet awakened to the inner side of life has not experienced life fully. He has only seen one side of life-perhaps the more interesting side, but the less real. The one who has experienced both sides of life, the outer and the inner, has certainly fulfilled the purpose of his life on earth.