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



1,1: Magnetism

1,4: Insight

1,5: Spirit

1,6: Purity

2,1: Breath

2,2: the Spirit In the Flesh



1: Magnetism

2: Physical Magnetism

3: The Magnetism Of The Mind

4: Magnetism of the Heart

5: The Magnetism of the Soul

6: Mental Purification

7: The Magnetism of Beings and Objects

8: Personal Magnetism, Part I

9: Personal Magnetism, Part II

10: Our God Part And Our Human Part

Magnetism, by Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan

Magnetism of the Spirit by Pir Vilayat

The Healing Papers

1,1: Magnetism

1: Magnetism

  1. One of the aspects of personal magnetism is physical magnetism, which has three kinds of attraction.

    • One kind comes because the mechanism of the body is working properly, regularly, when the circulation of the blood is right and when proper care is taken of the body.
    • The next depends on the attractiveness of the form and features with which a person is born.
    • The third is caused by harmonious movement.

    The person who lacks any of these three things will naturally lack magnetism. As there is the blossoming of the trees, so there is the time in a person's life when he blossoms, a time which is called youth, when this magnetism expresses itself in its fullness. It comes as a season and it goes as a season.

  2. The second aspect of magnetism is the magnetism of mind. A person of thought and wit, one who is quick to grasp something and apt in expressing his ideas to others, naturally has magnetic power.

  3. The third aspect of magnetism is the magnetism of heart. It is more powerful than the magnetism of mind, for the latter touches the surface whereas the magnetism of heart touches the depths of a person. The heart can be best described as a glowing fire if it is living, but when it is dead it is like frozen snow. Magnetism of heart needs no expression, for a person with a loving heart is indubitably magnetic. Therefore no one should profess to love, for love speaks for itself; it needs no words. The fire does not cry out, "I am burning!" The heat of the glow is felt without words.

    The magnetism of the heart can also be divided into three kinds.

    • One is the heart that receives love. It has the magnetism of the moon; the cooling effect of the moon is seen in the beloved soul.
    • Then there is the heart that loves, and this has a more powerful magnetism, a magnetism which can be likened to the sun, which is powerful and which shines.
    • And the third kind of love is greater, finer, and more subtle than the two mentioned above: it is developed when the love becomes a continually springing fountain, which rises as a stream and falls as many drops. It is the love of souls who cannot help but love, the love of souls who only know love, not hate; the love of souls who are no longer the possessors of love but who have become love itself. Their magnetism spreads in a wider horizon and lasts longer than one could ever imagine.

  4. The fourth and highest aspect of magnetism is the magnetism of the soul. The soul that is born again, the soul that has begun to live, the soul that has opened its eyes to the world, that soul not only attracts the wise and the virtuous, but also those who are devoid of wisdom and who lack virtue.

    • The presence of souls who have awakened is itself a magnetism; it draws people walking on the earth and it draws souls that are not seen on the earth. It not only draws the living beings, the lower creation, but also the trees and plants are drawn to it.
    • The atmosphere that an awakened soul produces lives for centuries in this world, unbroken and unpolluted. The sky takes care of it and preserves it for generations, in order to experience and enjoy this atmosphere produced by the illuminated souls.
    • And the third way in which the illuminated soul shows its magnetism is in words and acts, so that every word becomes dynamic, in Biblical terms a tongue of flame; and everything this soul gives to the world remains; it lives and never dies.

2: Physical Magnetism

There is not much difference between magnetism and vibration, but at the same time we use the word vibration for that which we can feel in some form or other, which we can perceive, which is more intelligible; whereas we are not always conscious of magnetism and it is not always intelligible although it has an effect on us. Sometimes magnetism may work for a long, long time before we are even conscious of it. Nevertheless, these are one and the same thing; in the aspect where it is intelligible we call it vibration because we feel the movement, whereas in the aspect of magnetism we may not feel it until its effect manifests to our view.

It is not always that one is attracted or feels repulsion on meeting a person, though it may happen that one is attracted or repulsed by merely seeing a person. Attraction or repulsion is something which takes place in less than a moment. The finer a man is the more he is awakened to this sense of attraction or repulsion, and as soon as he casts his glance over a person he either feels attracted or repelled. The only difference is that the wise see all and rise above it, whereas people of little sense react instantly. Nevertheless, every person gives an impression in an instant which calls out either attraction or repulsion.

  • Treating this subject from a physical point of view only, the first important thing which works automatically on another person is form and feature. The reason is that every individual is partly, even if not wholly, responsible for his form and features. Form and features do not represent only a family resemblance, but they tell us something about the person's mentality, his attitude of mind, his outlook on life, his condition. The first principle in regard to feature and form, besides the right formation, is the right proportion. Upon this depend attraction and repulsion. No doubt everyone sees it differently, because the sense of proportion is different in everyone, and therefore the impression is also different. And when we look at it from the artistic point of view, we find that there is a sense which is more developed in some and less in others, a sense which is awakened and which is touched by line and color.

  • The next aspect of physical magnetism can be seen in the regularity of the working of the physical body, in the rhythm of the heart and the pulse and in the circulation of the blood; also in the purity of the body, within and without. This magnetism is sustained by a regular life, by taking care of one's health and vigor, and by maintaining a regular rhythm of life. A man, absorbed as he is in his daily affairs, often neglects his body which is a vehicle to express the spiritual ideal. His neglect is sometimes due to his absorption in his daily work, sometimes to thoughtlessness, and sometimes because he does not trouble to think about it.
  • Another aspect of physical magnetism can be observed in the movements. By this is not meant dancing movements, but movements in ordinary life: walking, sitting, eating, drinking. Every moment one shows the bent of one's mind with every turn one takes. We can see from a man's movements what his weakness is and what his strength is; his movements can tell us of his wretchedness and of his joy. A person with awkward movements will always have an awkward mentality, a person with crude movements will naturally be coarse.

    This does not mean that one should develop artificial movements in one's everyday life in order to make one's movements more beautiful and appealing; that would be still worse, Nothing that is artificial has any power; that which attracts is an innocent movement. It manifests naturally; one cannot help moving in a certain way. Control over one's actions, over one's movements, gives a person magnetism; and the one who moves automatically loses that magnetism, whereas the one who gains control over his movements develops a power of magnetism which manifests in different forms.

    Is it not clear that a person who walks stamping on the floor with his feet has something hard in his mentality? A person may show his animal tendencies in the way he eats; also the way he sits, the way he looks, the way he speaks, and the way he acts in every capacity of life, are expressive of the condition of his mind.

Many do not observe all this, and yet they are affected by it just the same. Either they are attracted to someone or they are repulsed by him without his having said one word. Very often a person goes to look for work in an office, in a shop or elsewhere, and the man who appoints him, before he asks him any question has gained a first impression of him without even knowing it himself; and it is this impression which directs the whole conversation that he has with that person. He may ask him a hundred questions or only two questions, but they are dictated by the first impression he received in one instant. Naturally an ordinary person is not awakened to the higher aspects of magnetism, but everyone in a greater or lesser degree possesses a sense to feel and to be affected by physical magnetism.

3: The Magnetism Of The Mind

In many cases the magnetism of the mind proves to be more powerful than physical magnetism. It can be divided into five aspects.

  1. The man who has a keen perception can win the hearts of both the foolish and the wise, because he understands them both. The wise man looks for someone who will understand his wisdom, but the foolish man is also longing to meet someone who will listen to his story and who will understand him. For the foolish person is always rejected; everybody gets tired of listening to his stories and tries to avoid him. The wise man, with his rare thoughts of wisdom, is always disappointed in people, and when he meets someone who can perceive his ideas this gives him a joy beyond words. It is because of this that a perceptive faculty in a person makes him loved by all.

  2. The next aspect of mind is creative. It may manifest in the form of an invention or in a work of art; it may manifest in the form of composing music, writing poetry, and in many other forms. This aspect shows a most wonderful quality of God, namely creation. The creative genius has always the sword of victory in his hand, and all he does will bring him success and give his personality that magnetism which attracts everyone who understands his merit.

  3. The third aspect of the mind is reasoning, judging. The man who has the faculty of reasoning and of justice is sought by everyone. He is the one to depend upon and to accept advice from. This faculty will show in all he says and does, and it will win for him many who are attracted by it.

  4. The fourth aspect of the mind is memory. A man who can remember verses, songs, words, or ideas collects knowledge within himself. It is he who may be called learned, who has within him a storehouse of all he has studied, experienced and seen, and this gives him a magnetic influence which attracts those who value learning.

    Sometimes people, wishing to improve a weak memory, attempt to memorize more and more, but [. . . text missing; suggest: "it is not through artificial exercise of the memory"] faculty that the faculty develops. Very often we remember things which are useless. There are many things which it is not necessary to remember, and in trying to do so we make our memory tired with those thoughts; consequently, it is not free to remember other, more important things. It is no longer open; it becomes limited; it closes itself with the thoughts it has in it, and this may even develop insanity. The best advice in regard to memory is to forget all the disagreeable things of the past, and only to remember the most beautiful ones.

  5. The fifth aspect of the mind is feeling. The mind that has a touch of feeling is brilliant like a diamond. It has a liquid quality, for the warmth of feeling liquefies the crystal-like mind. A man with such a mind shows this quality in what we call wit, and also in tact. Wit is a play of delicate feelings, of humor or joy, and the thought which it forms manifests in speech or action. It has a cunning way of winning those who have subtle perception. When three or four people are sitting together, and a serious person comes and sits down among them like a rock, hard and stiff and devoid of any sense of humor, he kills even the atmosphere of the place; but when someone, even if he is a stranger, joins them and shows that he possesses the quality of wit, he wins them all in a few moments. The mentality of the witty person can be called a dancing mind, and to have a witty mind is a wonderful manifestation of nature; it is a great quality. A witty person can make words dance; his phrases can give us the joy of a symphony.

    The serious manifestation of this quality is tact. It is essentially the same as wit; when wit is developed and centralized it becomes tact. Everyone can feel, think, speak, and act, but not everyone is always tactful. It takes lifelong study and practice to be tactful, and even if a person becomes tactful at the last moment of his life it is worthwhile. The magnetism of a tactful person is beyond words. Every word and movement, every action of his, will have an influence on those whom he meets, for he is not only a considerate person; he is consideration itself.

    It is not that all sympathetic people are always tactful. There are people who are most loving and yet tactless; the more they want to please their friends, the more they displease them. Their loving words can become stones instead of flowers. This does not mean that they have no love, that they have no sympathy; it only means that they do not possess this great wealth of mind which is tact.

There are three degrees of the rhythm of mind.

  1. There is a mind which creates slowly and perceives slowly,
  2. there is a mind which creates gently and perceives gently,
  3. and the third degree is the mind which perceives quickly and creates thoughts quickly.

There is a particular phenomenon that manifests from these three rhythms of the mind, each of which has its particular influence. The three qualities of the mind -- slow, gentle, and quick -- are the outcome of the three Gunas, as they are called in Sanskrit: Satva, Rajas and Tamas.

  1. There is one person to whom we may say something and he answers, "Will you give me time to think it over? May I tell you about it tomorrow?" The answer that he will give us will surely be of some worth.
  2. There is another person who has heard us say something and he says, "And then, what then?"; and then we go on speaking, and while we are saying something else he is thinking about what has struck his mind. By the time we have finished our conversation he has found a proper answer to what we said first.
  3. And there is a third man who answers us even before we have finished our sentence; far from thinking about what we have said, he has not even heard it. He has at once formed an opinion on it and promptly gives an answer. Such a man may easily make a mistake.

In conclusion we might say that there are two principal mentalities, of which one may be called a living mind and the other a dead mind. A living mind will show its life by its creative and perceptive quality. The pleasure that a man derives from a clear mind and a living mentality is a pleasure that cannot be compared with the pleasures that belong to this earth. A brilliant intellectuality imparts the pleasure of flying in the air, it lifts one above the earth. The thinker is like a bird that flies in the air compared with the man who is like an animal that stands on its four legs; and the joy of the bird that flies in the air is beyond comparison with the pleasure of the animal that walks on the earth.

4: Magnetism of the Heart

The living heart has the same quality as the primal being of God, and it is because of this that the heart of man is the greatest magnet there is. The primal aspect of the divine Being, as it is said in the Bible, is love; the manifestation of the same principle in its fullness is to be found in the heart of man, and thus the awakening of the heart is in fact the awakening of God. In the person whose heart is not awakened, God is not yet awakened.

There is nothing in the world that draws people closer together than sympathy. A simple answer to the question as to what attracts and what repulses, will be that sympathy attracts and that antipathy gives a feeling of repulsion. Some people have sympathy for one person and antipathy for another, but when they feel antipathy for somebody this eats up the magnetism which is created in their hearts by sympathy, and therefore they will always lack magnetism. What is created on one side is used up on the other side.

Heart quality is that which attracts not only mankind but even animals and birds. When traveling abroad we very often meet a person who does not know one word of our language, and yet we feel a silent friendship with him. He may not speak, but his heart speaks and our heart hears it. The living heart is such a phenomenon that it needs no pleading. A sympathetic person need not say, "I like you very much." Sympathy speaks for itself. The voice of the heart reaches us before a word is uttered. The voice of the heart is louder, the words that the heart speaks are clearer than the words of any language. No barrier remains when the heart draws a person, neither land nor water, for the heart is a phenomenon in itself. If there is anything in man that can be called living it is the heart, not heart in the physical sense but in the mystical sense.

There are three reasons why a person may be attracted to another:

  1. in one case the heart quality of the one is the same as that of the other with only very little difference; then they are attracted.
  2. The second reason is that the heart quality of the one is quite opposite to that of the other.
  3. And the third reason is that in the one there is a heart and in the other there is a stone.

The explanation

  1. of the first of these three rules is that like attracts like; a sympathetic person is naturally drawn towards a loving person.
  2. The explanation of the second rule is that the one has certain heart qualities and the other has other heart qualities; the qualities of the one supplement those of the other; together, therefore, they make a complete heart; that is why they are drawn together. One will often see two people of quite different qualities who are yet great friends.
  3. And the explanation of the third rule is that what is most fine seeks for what is most dense in order to express itself. Are not souls attracted to the dense earth in order to be born as mortal beings? Are not souls living in the angelic world attracted to a human body, donning it in order to be walking under the sun? If heaven can be attracted to the earth, then a most spiritual person can be attracted to a most material one. What is fine cannot exist without what is dense, and what is dense cannot exist without what is fine; therefore two opposite poles, meeting together, form a perfect whole.

The other law is the law of repulsion.

  1. It is possible for a sympathetic person to become friends with a quite unsympathetic one, but there is often repulsion between a sympathetic person and one who is half-sympathetic, as there is between the wise and the half-wise. They cannot get along together. The wise can get along better with the foolish than with someone who is half-wise. The latter makes life very difficult for the wise man.
  2. Another reason for repulsion is the inharmonious grouping of the qualities of two people; in other words the qualities of the one do not blend with those of the other. Both may have lovable qualities, but they may be so different that they cannot blend, and then there comes repulsion.
  3. The third reason for repulsion is that there is no echo of sympathy to be found in the other. Even in what we call a heartless person one expects to find an echo of one's own sympathy, but when one does not find that echo, then it is like standing before an iron wall; it is then that repulsion comes.

We read in ancient legends that the saints, the illuminated souls, spoke with birds and animals. What language did they speak?, It was the language of the heart. We read in the Bible of the Twelve Apostles understanding all languages. What was it? It was the awakening of the heart. Once the heart is awakened we begin to understand another's language before a word is spoken. Birds and beasts apart, sympathy has an influence even on trees and plants. A sympathetic person creates an atmosphere which naturally attracts another; worthy or unworthy, both are drawn by sympathy.

There are some who are capable of sympathy, and there are others who are not capable of it; nevertheless everyone possesses a heart. Either it is living or it is dead, and if it is living it has magnetism. The more living it is, the more magnetism it has; without magnetism the heart is dead, or one should rather say that it is not yet awakened, that it is asleep.

It is the greatest pity when the heart awakens and then goes to sleep again; this is worse than not awakening. If it is awakened and keeps awake, its magnetism becomes stronger and stronger because the power of the heart becomes greater and greater, and what it can attract is beyond words to explain. Souls who have the power of wonder-working, of performing miracles, do this through the power of the heart. And the power of the heart is the power of God. In Sufi terms an awakened heart is called Sahib-e Dil, which means master-mind. If anyone has ever heard the word within, it is he whose heart is awakened; for the Speaker speaks all the time while the heart is mostly asleep. If the heart is awakened it can hear the whisper which comes from within.

When disagreement arises between friends, when sympathy turns into antipathy, when sweet turns into bitter, and when one asks them why it is so, what do they say? "The other one does not understand." Probably they will both say the same. Very few will say, "I did not understand the other." Most people will say, "The other does not understand me." But why must there be this lack of understanding? What causes it? It is lack of sympathy. No words can ever make a person understand; it is the heart alone which can convey its full meaning to the other heart, for there are subtle waves of sympathy, there are delicate perceptions of feelings such as gratefulness, admiration, kindness, which cannot be put into words. Words are too inadequate to explain the finer feelings, it is the heart quality which can express itself fully, and again it is the heart quality which can understand fully. Would it therefore be an exaggeration to say that as long as the heart is not awakened a man is as though dead: it is after the awakening of the heart that a man begins to live.

Then there is the question of how to develop this magnetism which is more powerful than all the other influences and qualities of man. The answer is that one should not try to develop the power of this magnetism; this in itself would be an error. To develop a quality in order to draw others? For that reason? It is a selfish reason, and selfishness stands in the way of magnetism. Magnetism comes from having no desire for any such powers, but allowing this quality of the heart to develop naturally; for love is the plant of God, and it needs no water to grow. It is life itself, it has power in itself to grow and to expand, if only we do not close our heart. What is necessary on the part of man is not to keep it from developing. And in cases where we find lack of sympathy in people, it is not that their heart did not have sympathy, but only that it is closed, either intentionally or unintentionally. To say that someone is loveless is like saying that there is no water beneath a certain piece of land. There is no land which has no water in its depths, and if one has the patience to dig deep enough there is no heart that will seem to be without sympathy.

All the beauty of life manifests to the view of him whose heart is awakened. To the extent to which a heart is opened, to that extent the horizon of beauty manifests to his view. It is not only that the awakened heart draws man nearer, but a living heart also draws God closer.

It is as in the story of a Persian king, to whom his Grand Vizier said, "All day long you give your time to the work of the state and at night you are occupied in devotion to God. Why is this?" The king answered, "At night I pursue God, so that during the day God will follow me!"

People talk about magic; can there be greater magic than the quality of heart? The most melodious song, the most beautiful poetry, is the fine feeling of a living heart.

5: The Magnetism of the Soul

The soul has the greatest magnetism compared with the power of mind and the physical magnetism. The word soul is so little understood that it is difficult for most people to perceive and to distinguish soul qualities. There are, however, soul qualities, distinct and different from the qualities of mind and body. They are greater than what one calls virtue, and they can attract more than any other quality. One might call them angelic qualities, but since we have to do with human beings and we have little to do with angels, it is better to call them soul qualities.

The principal soul quality is innocence. There is a great difference between innocence and ignorance. The ignorant one does not know; the innocent one both knows and does not know. It is its innocence that attracts us in a child, and the magnetism that we feel in the expression of an infant has a heavenly character. The child does not know and therefore it is innocent, but when the soul has reached a point where it knows and yet is innocent, then it is divine. Very often people mistake an innocent soul for a simple soul. Indeed, that soul is simple, but not in the way people think.

  • When one sees generosity in someone who is poor
  • and humility in someone who is honored,
  • when one notices simplicity in a great soul
  • and fineness in a strong personality,
  • when one discerns an unassuming quality in a brave man
  • and a desire to learn in a man who knows and understands,
then one may realize that all these are qualities which belong to the soul, and they win the heart of man more than anything in the world. People are unconsciously attracted; souls without realizing it will surrender to the soul that shows its original qualities.

Every infant brings with it to the earth soul qualities, but as it grows it forgets them and learns the qualities of the earth. And when these earth qualities have matured and developed after a person has learned the practical side of life, after he has learnt to distinguish between good and bad, between right and wrong, then if the soul unfolds itself it will begin to show the soul qualities as a sign of its unfoldment.

It is not possible to keep the innocence of childhood for ever; even if one wanted to preserve it, one could not do so, for life on earth sweeps it away. And as a child grows up it becomes more and more clever, and that gives it satisfaction. People will call it common sense, they will call it practicality, or whatever name they may choose; they will even call it wisdom. But the time of the soul's maturity eventually comes; and when once the soul has matured a new outlook on life arises.

All the knowledge gained through experiences, through cleverness, practicality, common sense, or wisdom, drops its hard shell and remains only in the form of essence; and innocence manifests as its natural outcome. It is not that innocent people are not wise, though they may not seem wise from our point of view; those who are really innocent know the essence of wisdom while yet perhaps appearing to be simple.

No doubt a person with soul qualities is not always understood. His language is different. But at the same time it is the one with soul qualities who will penetrate and who will have power in the form of influence. When we read in the lives of the saints of the simplicity with which they talked with birds and trees and flowers, then we can understand, if we try, that it was not the condition of a simple mind that they showed; it was a mind full of wisdom, only it worked in a different way.

It does not take long for someone with soul quality to make friends; he can make friends with the wise, with the foolish, with the virtuous, with the sinner; for nothing can stand as a barrier between two souls. His soul will reach the soul of the other, and the deeper he is, the deeper will he penetrate into the other.

Another soul quality is harmony. It is a natural inclination of an illuminated soul to create harmony, for it is in harmony that an illuminated soul finds peace; the one who is without illumination finds his satisfaction in struggle. Fearlessness is also a soul quality. It is the light of the soul, falling on problems that trouble us, which makes us see life more clearly and which gives us the power to surmount our difficulties. Soul quality gives bravery, courage, as we see in the image of Shiva, the Lord of the Yogis, who has a snake round his neck, which means that he is not afraid of keeping the enemy he has conquered curled round him. That is bravery.

All the manners one learns in order to become refined are the natural outcome of the soul quality. Once the soul is awakened one need not learn manners; manners come of themselves. For all beautiful manners belong to the soul; they are the qualities of an illuminated soul. One tries to build a personality, but once the soul has awakened the personality is built like a magic palace. It is built without building.

In point of fact all virtues are soul qualities. But virtues are also preached from the pulpit, and a person who has learned to be good and nice and kind because the preacher has told him to may possess virtues, and yet these virtues do not belong to him, they are like something he has borrowed from somewhere, and he will have to give it back some day. But that which comes out of the heart as a natural spring is real virtue, for it will all remain, and that gives one the greatest satisfaction. It is very sad for a person to be good only because goodness has been urged upon him and he cannot escape, and so he has to be good. This kind of goodness is really worse than badness.

Soul quality also expresses itself through art, through music, through poetry. And in whatever way one may wish to give expression to the soul, the soul quality manifests in the form of love, harmony, and beauty.

6: Mental Purification

There is no great difference between magnetism and an electrical current. Scientists have never been able to give an answer to the question of what electricity really is; but one can say that to a certain extent electricity is magnetism and magnetism is electricity. Power of attraction is magnetism, power that gives force and energy is electricity; it is essentially the same power. But interesting as the subject of magnetism is from a scientific point of view, as interesting, or even more so, is it from a mystical point of view.

An Element Attracts Its Like

A magnet and something which is attracted to the magnet have a relationship. The magnet represents the essence, part of which is held by the object which is attracted. Very often one does not find a trace of that essence in the object that the magnet attracts, but at the same time the essence is there, and that is the logical reason why it is attracted.

The ancients used to recognize that the relationship between two persons of the same blood was influenced by that magnetism, and a deep study of this fact will certainly prove that there are relations.

An incident that occurred lately is an example of this. A man from Stockholm was visiting London, where he thought he had no relations or, if any, they dated from perhaps a century ago. In the street one day someone called him by name. When he turned round, the man who had called him excused himself, saying, "I am sorry, I have made a mistake." But he asked, "How did you know my name? The name you said is mine!" And when they spoke together they found that they were cousins, although very distant ones.

The more attention we give to this subject, the more proof we can find of one element being drawn to its similar element.

Sa'adi says, "Element attracts element, as a dove is attracted to a dove and an eagle is attracted to an eagle."

But do we not find the same thing in life every day? A gambler when he goes to another country, one does not know how, attracts another gambler very soon. And it is not only that when two persons of a similar element meet they are attracted to one another, but even conditions, life itself, brings about their meeting; life itself draws them together. And therefore it is natural that a person who is very sad attracts a miserable one to join him; the one with joy, with happiness, naturally attracts happiness. And in this way magnetism is working through the whole of creation; and in all aspects you will see the phenomena of magnetism, in the physical world as well as in the mental spheres.

An Element Attracts Its Opposite

Of course, one cannot say that an element always attracts the same element, for the element also attracts what it lacks, what is opposite to it. When we think of friendship, we see that with some we feel inclined to be friends and from others we feel inclined to keep away. And the most interesting part is that those whom we feel disinclined to be friends with, have also some who are drawn towards them in friendship. This leads us to the truth which lies in musical harmony: how two notes have a relation to one another and their combination brings about a harmony.

Use of Magnetism

Now coming to the question of the practical use of magnetism, whether you are in business or in industry, whether you are in domestic or in political work, in whatever situation, you will always find that magnetism is the secret of your progress in life.

  • As to qualifications, to which we give such great importance, you will find that numberless people who are most highly qualified do not make their way through life because of lack of magnetism. Very often there may be a highly qualified man, but before he speaks of his qualification the person to whom he has gone has had enough of him.
  • Personality takes such an important place in life that even the absence of qualifications is tolerated when the personality has magnetism. In these times, when materialism is so much on the increase that personality is given much less importance in society, and when heroism has no place in life, magnetism works automatically and proves to be the most essential thing even now, and it will always prove so.
  • But people generally do not go deeply into the subject of magnetism and only recognize personal magnetism by the attraction that they feel.

When we consider personal magnetism, we may divide it into four different classes.

Physical Magnetism

One kind, the ordinary kind of magnetism, is concerned with the physical plane; and this magnetism has to do with nourishment, with hygiene, with regular living, with right breathing and the regulation of activity and repose. This magnetism also depends on the age, like the ascending and descending notes in an octave. It may be likened to the season of spring, which comes and goes; and at the same time this magnetism is dependent upon everything belonging to the physical world, since it is a physical magnetism.

Mental Magnetism

Then there is the magnetism which may be called mental. A person with a sparkling intelligence naturally becomes the center of his society.

  • The person who has wit and a keen perception, who can express himself well, who understands quickly, that is the person who always attracts others around him and is liked by everyone.
  • The person who has knowledge of human nature, who knows about things and conditions, naturally draws people towards him. If there is any qualification it is this; and without this qualification no other qualification can be of very great use.
  • But a man who is born with this sparkling kind of intelligence, it is he who becomes a genius, it is he who accomplishes things, and it is he who helps others to accomplish something, for on his mind others depend.
  • It is this person who can guide himself and direct others. And with all our thought of equality in which we are so much absorbed, we shall find that it is this person who will win the battle in life, and it is this person who stands above the masses, who leads, and without whom many are lost.

The question is, how can this magnetism be developed? This magnetism is developed by study, by concentration, by a keen observation of life, and by the knowledge of repose. Very many intelligent persons, because they do not know how to concentrate and how to take repose in their lives, in time blunt their intelligence; because there is a certain fund of energy which is preserved and which is limited, and when there is too much pressure put upon that limited energy in the end, what happens? A person becomes less and less intelligent, and his power of mind diminishes every day. Whenever you find a very intelligent man becoming duller every day, it always proves that the amount of energy that was there has been spent. It is, therefore, by knowing how to preserve one's intellect, that this magnetism remains in a right condition.

What generally happens is that great responsibility falls on the intelligent person. Much more is asked of him than of others who lack intelligence. If he does not give his mind a rest by knowing how to repose, and if he does not concentrate and thus sharpen his intellect naturally - just like a knife which is continually used, it will become blunted naturally - the continual use of intellect will make him short of words.

Heart Magnetism

The third aspect of magnetism is perhaps a higher kind than the two which have been described above, for this magnetism is more profound and it affects another person more deeply. This is the magnetism of love, of sympathy, of friendliness.

  • A person who by nature is sympathetic;
  • a person who tolerates, who forgets, who forgives;
  • a person who does not keep bitterness nor malice in his mind against anyone;
  • a person who admires and appreciates beauty, who loves it in art, in nature, in all its forms,
  • and who goes out to friend and foe, to the acquaintance, the stranger, to all;
  • the person who can endure and who can suffer, and who has the power to have patience through all conditions of life,
  • who feels the pain of another in his heart and who is always willing to become a friend.

It is that person whose magnetism is greater than all the other magnetisms that we know of. We do not need to go far to see this; if only we look for good things in people we shall find this. Among our surroundings we can find many in whom we can appreciate this quality.

One day a man who had traveled very much saw an Indian mystic, and he said, "We have heard so much and we have read so much about the saints and sages and Mahatmas and masters who live in India, but when I went there I found no one." And the mystic told him, "You need not have gone so far. The souls who are worthwhile, the souls who love one another, the saints and sages, are to be found everywhere."

If we can appreciate them, we can find them; but if we cannot appreciate them, even if an angel came we would not be able to find these qualities in him. Nevertheless, call him a saint or a sage, call him a prophet or a Mahatma, if there is anything that draws man towards man, it is the love element that he pours out.

Now the question is, how can one develop this quality? And the answer will be: by one thing only. By studying, by knowing, by practicing, and by living the life of a friend. By contemplation on this thought from morning till evening:

"Towards everyone I meet, towards those who love me and those who hate me, will I practice in my life that thought of friendliness, that outgoing, that pouring out of sympathy and love."

Apart from the magnetism that one acquires from this, when we consider life as it is, with all its limitations, with all the pain and troubles and responsibilities that it gives us, if there seems to be anything worthwhile it is one thing only, and that is the thought and impression that we have done our best to be gentle, to be tender to those whom we meet in our everyday life. If there is any prayer, if there is any worship, if there is any religion, it is this. For in the life hereafter there is no one to please; if there is anyone to be pleased and whose pleasure it is worth while to earn, it is here, it is man; and it is in the pleasure of man, if one understands it, that the pleasure of God resides.

Soul Magnetism

The fourth aspect of magnetism is magnetism itself. Lack of magnetism means that this aspect is hidden; this magnetism is the soul of man. To define what the soul is, it may be said that the soul is the self of man. But which self? That self of which he does not know.

There is a humorous Indian story about some peasants who were traveling, but it was the first time in their life that they had done so. Therefore, being worried about each other, they decided the next morning to count if all the peasants were still there. They were very upset after having counted, for they counted nineteen, and it was understood that twenty peasants had left home. And so each peasant counted and each said, "There are nineteen"; and they could not find who was missing, for everyone was there. In the end they found that all those who had counted had forgotten to count themselves.

That is the condition of the soul. It sees all selves, but it does not see itself. And the day when the soul realizes itself, that day a new life begins, a new birth. It is the self-realized soul which grows, which expands. So long as the soul has not realized itself, it does not develop, it does not grow. Therefore it is at the moment when the soul begins to realize itself that a man really begins to live in the world.

But it must be understood that the magnetism of the self-realized soul is greater than any magnetism one could ever imagine. It is power, it is wisdom, it is peace, it is intelligence, it is all.

  • It is this magnetism that heals, heals bodies and heals minds; and
  • it is this magnetism that raises those fallen into difficulties, in pain and sorrows.
  • It is this magnetism that brings others out of their confusion, their darkness.
  • It is by this magnetism that the illuminated souls spread out their love, thereby attracting all beings.
  • It is of this magnetism that Christ said to the fishermen, "Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men."
  • It is with this magnetism that the great ones, such as Buddha, such as Moses, Christ, Muhammad, came and attracted humanity. And humanity during the ages has not forgotten.
  • It is their magnetism which, after their having left this earth, has held millions and millions of people in one bond of brotherhood, of sympathy, of friendship.

The immense power that the soul-magnetism gives shows that it is divine magnetism. It is a proof of something behind the seen world.

7: The Magnetism of Beings and Objects

In preparing anything one does not only put one's magnetism in it, but the voice of one's soul is produced in the thing one prepares. For instance, it is not difficult for an intuitive person to find in the food that comes before him the thoughts of the cook. It is not only the grade of evolution that the cook has, but also what the cook is thinking at that particular time, that is produced in it. If the cook is irritated while cooking, if she is grumbling, if she is sighing, if she is miserable, wretched, all that comes before you with the food she prepares. It is the knowledge of this fact which made the Hindus engage as a cook a high-caste Brahmin, whose evolution was great, whose life was pure, whose thoughts were elevated. It is not the custom of the past, it is the custom of today, that a Brahmin who is sometimes the Guru, the teacher, of other castes, may also be the cook. Besides this, in the ancient times when human personality was keenly observed in everything one did, every person, whatever his rank or position in life, was qualified in cooking and preparing dishes for himself and for his friends; and a great mark of appreciation and affection was shown by people who invited some relations or friends to come to their house, by placing before them dishes that they themselves had prepared. It was not the dish, it was the thought that was put into it.

Life at the present time seems to have taken away many considerations of personal character. But whether in the East or in the West, there was a time when the craft of knitting or weaving clothes was known by every little girl; and to give one's brother or sister or beloved or relation some little thing made by one's own hand was the custom. Now a thing is easily bought at the shop; no one knows who has made it, nor whether it was made grudgingly, or with grumbling, or how. Especially at this time when the working man is in revolt, what the workman has put into the objects he has made for you is a question. And in sewing for the one she loves, a thought naturally has gone with every stitch that a girl has made; if it is done with love and affection, every stitch produces a new thought; it completes that living thought of love, thus giving inwardly that help that every soul is in need of.

But then also the wagons, carriages and ships which are used at the risk of man's life, by whom are they made? Who knows what was the condition of mind of the builders of the Titanic? Was there a peacemaker teaching them to keep a certain rhythm of mind while making her?

Everything that is made has a magical influence in it. If it is made with a thought quite contrary to what is needed, it only means dangers awaiting the ship, the train, the wagon, the car. Very often without apparent cause you find a boat in danger, something breaking without a substantial reason. In its make-up the thought of destruction has been given. It is working through it; it is something more living than the object itself. So it is when a house is built. The thoughts given to it by the one who was building it, or by those who worked on it, all count.

The thought attached to things is a life-power. But in order to define it, it may be called a vibratory power. In a mystic's conception vibrations may be considered to have three aspects: audible, visible, and perceptible. Now the vibrations put into an object are never audible and visible; they are only perceptible. Perceptible to what? To the intuitive faculty of man. But it is not meant by this that the one who lacks intuitive faculty does not perceive it, he perceives it too, but unconsciously. In short, we understand by this that there is a thought attached to all things made either by an individual or by the multitude and that thought will give results accordingly.

The influence put into things is according to the intensity of the feeling. A note resounds according to the intensity with which you strike it. You may strike a note on the piano, and it will continue to resound for so long; and if you strike it with less intensity it resounds for a shorter time. But at the same time it is according to the strength with which you strike and the instrument on which you strike. There may be one instrument the string of which will continue to vibrate for a very long time; there is another instrument whose string will not vibrate for very long, and then it will quiet down. And so it is also according to the medium which you take in striking vibrations, that the effect is made.

In all things there is God; but the object is the instrument, and man is life itself. Into the object a person puts life. When a certain thing is being made, it is at that time that life is put into it which goes on and on like breath in a body. This also gives us a hint that when we take flowers to a patient and we bring a healing thought with them, the flowers convey the thought of healing. And as the patient looks at the flowers, he will receive from the flowers the healing which has been put there. Any eatable or sweet, anything that we take to a friend with a thought of love, may create a harmonious, a happy result with him. Therefore every little thing given and taken in love, with a harmonious and good thought, has a greater value than the object itself. For it is not the object, it is what is behind it. Does it not teach us that it is not always the doing or preparing of things in our everyday life, but that it is giving these things with a harmonious, constructive thought that counts, so that our work may become a thousand times greater in effect and in its real value?

This also teaches us that while doing a certain thing we should be accomplishing something very great if we did it with this attitude, with this idea at the back of it: that we are not making a thing only, but that we are making it so that it lives. Does it not open before us a vast field of work that we could do easily, without much cost or effort? In its results that work could be of a much greater importance than anyone could think or imagine. Is it not at the same time a great blessing to be able to do a thing of great importance without any outward pretense? Even while writing a letter a person sometimes puts into it what words cannot explain; and yet the letter conveys it. There may be one word written with a loving thought behind it; that word will have a greater effect than perhaps a thousand others. Do we not almost hear a letter speaking? It is not always what is written in it; it brings the one who wrote it to us, and what mood he was in, his evolution, his displeasure, his joy and his sorrow; the letter conveys more than what is written in it.

Consider the great souls who have come to the earth at different times. Conditions opposed them, and they found difficulties at every move in accomplishing what they wanted to do; yet they have produced the voice, a living voice. That living voice continued long after they had left, and spread in time throughout the whole universe, accomplishing what they had once wished. The effect of that one moment of thought took perhaps centuries to build something, but it was something worth while, something beyond man's comprehension.

If we could only understand what spirit is, we should esteem the human being much more than we do now. We trust man so little, we believe in man so little, we respect man so little, we esteem his possibilities so little. If we only knew what is at the back of every strong and weak soul, we should know that there is every possibility, and we should never under-estimate anyone nor fail to respect any man in spite of all he may lack; we should recognize that it is the Creator creating through all the different forms; but it is one Creator; and all that is built and prepared and made and composed, is made by that one Being working through this world of variety.

8: Personal Magnetism, Part I

Everyone sees how great is the influence of personal magnetism upon success in everyday life, profession., business, family, and daily occupations.

Sometimes we notice that we go to a shop to buy a certain thing, and there is something about the manner of the salesman that impels us to decide to visit the same shop the next time we need that kind of article. Even if it is a long way to the shop, we prefer not to go to one which is nearer. Similarly it sometimes happens that a person goes to a hotel or boarding house or restaurant, and someone treats him in such a way that he decides to return to that place rather than visit another.

So with doctors, solicitors, barristers, scientists, professors, and teachers of all kinds. A doctor may be well-versed in his knowledge, he may have a great many degrees, but if he lacks this personal magnetism, instead of curing patients he may make them worse. Sometimes a doctor cures the patient before giving him the prescription. Just by a word of kindness, by a manner, a tenderness, a sympathy he makes the patient feel so much better that the disease which before was too much to bear, appears to be curable after all. Half the pain has gone with just seeing the doctor, such a difference does personality make. It is a great healer.

Then there may be a solicitor or barrister who antagonizes his client as soon as he sees him, and so the latter does not wish to go to him next time. Another person will impart courage and hope; his personality, his speech, everything, will show that he is the man to follow, to go to for help.

In family life disagreement or agreement often arises for the same reason. The father, mother, husband or wife may have personal magnetism which can hold the family together. When this magnetism is lacking, a person finds it better to be among friends than to be with a relative; he would rather go out than stay at home. The home becomes a strange place, because there is not that magnetism for which he lives. It is as if in mid-winter a person comes to his room and finds it cold because there is no fire there; he wishes that he were somewhere else where there is a fire. Personal magnetism can create beauty around one, can attract one, can make a person attractive to his fellowman, serviceable to them. It is soothing; it is healing

What is this personal magnetism? Is it a development of psychic power or occult power? Is it an education, or is it refinement? The answer is that education helps personal magnetism, because knowledge is light, and light is beautiful, and it always helps. But this is not personal magnetism. People may be very well-educated and at the same time very disagreeable. Sa'adi says that an educated man who does not put what he has learnt into practice is like a donkey loaded with books: he is carrying them on his back, but he does not know it or act accordingly. He has a load of knowledge which serves no purpose. If his education has not made a man human, what is the use of education? It is just learning for the purpose of earning money.

One may think, if magnetism is not education, is it then psychic power? Not necessarily, though it is the natural psychic or occult power that we call personal magnetism. It is not necessary to attain this kind of power by a certain practice or study; one should already have it; and when it is used in the right way it is personal magnetism.

Is magnetism then politeness? Is it polish? As polish is the fashion today, every person learns it when he mixes with people; but this is not necessarily personal magnetism, though men may think he has a winning manner. If there can be any real explanation of personal magnetism, it is the making of one's own personality into that which one expects from others. A man usually makes the mistake of expecting things from others and not doing them himself. For instance, a man is very pleased if he is well received in a friend's house, if he is spoken kindly of, and treated well, if his vanity is satisfied by the action of others. He is very glad if others have a good opinion of him and overlook his defects. But seldom does he pause to do the same himself.

If we only tried to give to others all the things we demand from them; if we overlooked their bad points instead of expecting them to overlook ours; if we only thought, "How inconsiderate I was that time when I spoke so rudely to so and so;" if we only gave others all that we would like them to give us, that would create a personal magnetism; if we did to them all the things that we expect from them!

The word "gentleman" in the English language is a very good one in this respect. It has come to refer merely to dressing well; but the ideal behind it is good. It is the ideal of gentleness, and gentleness is the essence of personal magnetism. There cannot be a better lesson than that given in the Bible where it is said, "Blessed are the meek, blessed are the poor in spirit." But the difficulty is that man pays little attention to all these things; he thinks they are too simple. And at the same time if you ask him the meaning of "poor in spirit" he will find it very difficult to answer. Not many will know what that means. It may be understood by comparing the spirit of man with the spirit of an animal. If a tiger is lying in a certain place, and you want the tiger to get up, he will roar. If a man is lying there, and you say, "Will you please let me sit there," he will say, "Certainly," because his spirit is poorer than the spirit of the tiger. And that is also the difference between a man and a gentleman. The gentleman is he who shows that poorness of spirit in himself, a spirit of accommodating another, letting another sit in his place if he wants to.

He feels that it does not matter if another person sits in his place; it is really better. There is a person who, if we talk roughly to him, returns our words four times more rudely and coarsely. There is another person who, if we talk roughly to him, bears it and perhaps does not give an answer at all, or perhaps he understands and consequently avoids a fight or quarrel in his search for peace. It is written, "Blessed are the peace-makers." This is not merely the kind of peace which prevents fighting and bloodshed and strife; we may make this kind of peace many times a day from morning to night. There are a thousand matters about which we can quarrel and get annoyed with one another. So throughout our daily life, at all times, there are opportunities of making peace.

We always admire a person who shows gentleness in his movements, in sitting, walking, in his voice or words, in his thought; we admire it consciously or unconsciously. There is always charm in gentleness, and yet man neglects it when the time comes to practice it. That which should come first comes last. If only man realized how much he likes gentleness on the part of others! If a person has gentleness of voice or expression or word, it is so charming, so winning; we know this so well and yet we always forget it at the critical moment.

Poorness of spirit comes from meekness. Meekness is mildness, which is contrary to what we call roughness. Roughness of action or roughness of speech is contrary to mildness or meekness. Our eyes naturally always enjoy softness of color rather than striking tones, because of the aggressive power in the latter which our eyes cannot bear. We experience the same thing with the sun and moon. We do not like to look at the sun, and in India we enjoy the moonlight nights so much, we wish the moon shone every night. Why? Because it is mild; it shows meekness. Our power is the power of light; our strength of speech, thought, and action is of the same kind and the same nature as the light of the sun and moon respectively. If the light is too strong, it irritates; if it is mild, it soothes. So if we treat everyone with gentleness, our personality is always welcome wherever we are. The same gentleness in our speech will always give us success, and we will always have friends. If only we had control over our words; if only our words were always of that meek nature!

Among the musicians and poets of the East special attention is given to education in meekness and mildness. There is a Sanskrit saying, "Art becomes twice as graceful when art and mildness go together." How true it is. When we admire the art of the artist and say how beautiful it is, and he answers, "O, it is nothing, it is your kindness that causes you to admire it," his magnetism becomes great.

From a king down to the most ordinary person, it is mildness that wins the whole world. People of all positions in life and all grades of evolution can do such a great work with this one little possession.

Sa'adi says, "If your word is sweet, you conquer the world; wherever you go you win men's hearts."

Is it not what Christ means when he says to the fishermen, "Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men; " that is, "I will teach you those manners of humanity by which you will win everyone you may come in contact with." Do you think a person can become a fisher of men by his cleverness, by his artificial polish? False is false, gold is gold. The true gold will last; the false gold will lose its brilliance.

Polish is just like false gold. A person may wish to win wife, husband, father, brother, all by his cleverness, by his polish, but he will prove to be false even on a very unimportant occasion. Polish may please the eyes, but it cannot please the heart; the polish of the heart comes from the feeling. When the action of the heart is not in harmony with the roughness of the feeling, the feeling will come out all the same. All that is real will come out; the polish is only beautiful for a moment. It may show a person to be very gentle and clever for a moment, but it does not last. His friends will leave him in a short time. The relatives will all know in time that it is just external, all cleverness, not that which will last for ever. It is the truth that lasts for always. All the beautiful qualities should be true qualities, not false, because the value lies in the true and not in the false.

In ancient times people of great descent, royal princes, people of educated and religious families, used to go out into the world, and were not recognized as such because there was no international communication in those days; no nation knew its neighbor. Yet it happened that these persons were always recognized by their manner, recognized as belonging to such a family.

9: Personal Magnetism, Part II

Evolution has made all humanity a family; and now is the time when every individual should consider that as a member of the family of the whole of humanity he ought to show himself as being human in nature, and show how superior he can be to the animals and the lower creatures. If we only did what animals do, if we only ate, drank, slept, bit each other, got the better of one another, we should not accomplish anything great. Their whole life is spent in pursuit of their food. In the night animals join together and make a noise in the jungle. If we also enjoy ourselves in that way, then our amusements and joys and comforts are no greater than those of animals, unless we show some quality in our personality which animals do not possess.

A Hindustani poet, Amir says, "It is much more precious than any wealth to collect the wealth of a good manner."

Because by a good manner we can make another person as kind as our own father and mother, as kind and sympathetic as our own brother and sister, as respectful as our own son and daughter, if we only have that manner. If we know how to behave respectfully towards our elders, if we know how sympathetic and polite and good we ought to be to those who are poor or are servants, or who depend on us, if our manner is beautiful, there is no heart we can fail to win. The children of the wealthiest people may, owing to the ill manner of the parents, want to sacrifice all their fortune, their fatherland mother, in order to get away from them; they would even sacrifice life itself. As with children, so with less near relatives. They cannot attract as long as they have no good manner; all the physical magnetism passes away. During youth, a man may be very magnetic, but when his youth passes away his attraction may be lost. But the attraction of personal magnetism grows with years and can be used at all times. Even an old man is attractive, so that people will say, "What a nice person. By going to him we can feel so filled with joy and comfort." Although even the nearest and dearest will not always desire to spend time with an old person, they find themselves attracted to an aged one who has personal magnetism.

The Prophet said, "God is beautiful, and He loves beauty."

What is beautiful in life? It is not only trees and plants and flowers and the external physical world; the higher beauty is the beauty of personality. By the beauty of personality our heart is filled with joy; by the beauty of nature only the eyes are satisfied, the heart is not satisfied. It is the beauty of personality that fills our heart with joy; there is something imparted to us which we cannot explain. Animal magnetism passes away with the strength of the animal. Animal beauty all goes when the person is ill and his physical energy is lost; there is no longer any attraction.

Personal magnetism helps in all conditions. If a person is poor, it makes him rich, because his personality is such that he receives the attentions, the service, and all his life's demands with less trouble, even in spite of his humble position in life. Do we not see around us how a person of beautiful personality, however helpless, will always attract the good, the bad and all around him? If a person lacks it, however rich, however educated, however great in position, he will only attract those who are forced into his society, or such as are looking to get some of his wealth. His relatives, forced to be with him, only long for the time when he is no more, and his wealth will be theirs.

Let us think about the Prophets. There are so many followers of Christ in the world today, and perhaps it is true that not everyone understands his teachings or follows him because of his teaching. But if there is anything of him which is known to the world, if there is any of his fragrance left in the world, it is his personality. He was ready to forget and overlook the faults of others; he was ready to attend to the service of the poor, ready to play and be equal with little children. He never said, "I am a teacher from God, and people must come and bow before me."

That, then, is the attitude: the poorness of spirit, the harmony in life, the harmonious temperament.

From the highest to the lowest we always find people in a state of disharmony. In clubs, associations, meetings, institutions, parliaments, all will dispute and fight. This teaches us that however evolved a person may be in his education, his position, or his power and wealth, he has not mastered the law of harmony by these.

Whoever has mastered the law of harmony has developed humanity within himself. He will harmonize equally with the wise and with the foolish. It is not because he is wise that he harmonizes with the wise, nor because he is wise that he harmonizes with the foolish. Foolish men gave their lives for Christ; wise men worshiped him for his wisdom. "They left their nets" and the fishing where they had spent all their lives because Christ harmonized with them. He answered their questions; he was tolerant.

So with the story of Krishna. He is looked on as the incarnation of God, one of the greatest teachers the Hindus ever had. He was a child with little children, a cowherd with every cowherd. He was harmonious with everybody. He was wise among the learned, and was merry among the happy. He was not a king; he was not poor; he was one among all. The young and the old, everybody loved him. When he played the flute the cows and the deer and all the animals of the jungle would come to listen. It was not the mere skill of his music, for music is not attractive if the personality is not attractive; it was his personality that attracted them.

There were two friends speaking together, and one said, "That funeral which is passing is of a person who is going to heaven." Another funeral, passing later, caused this friend to remark, "For this person, the place is hell." The younger of the two friends asked, "What do you know about it?" "Oh," said the other, "it is so simple: Behind the first one were people walking with tears in their eyes, and they all looked so sad. So he must have won their hearts by his personality. His magnetism must have made such an impression that all the people appeared sad and sorrowing. But with the other funeral there were few people, and they were laughing in the sleeves and winking, and everybody had a smile, which shows that they were very pleased to get rid of him."

Whatever possession, whatever power, whatever honor, whatever wealth, whatever property we have, is of no use in the end, for all is passing. But if there is any one thing which is worth gaining in life because it lasts for ever, it is humanity.

10: Our God Part And Our Human Part

Not only in this age but also in past ages, the first thing realized by man has been his own limited existence formed of matter, which he called "I." This is not his fault; it is because religions have been interpreted with the intention of dominating the people, of holding them in the grasp of those who understood their meaning. The priests have only allowed people to understand very little, and all the rest they have kept for themselves. They have said, "You are ordinary beings. God is much too high for you to understand. We can communicate with Him, we can understand Him, but you must stay where you are."

All his life Buddha fought hard against this. When someone spoke to him of a spirit, of God, or made a show of a holy, a spiritual life, he said, "I do not believe in it." But this was very extreme, for it led people into another error: it led them to say that there was no God, no spirit.

Another reason for this separation was that it has always been the tendency of those who had the same way of thought, the same belief or faith, to come together in one group, in one society, in order to have the encouragement of each other's thought. By this they separated themselves from the rest of humanity.

The mystic has never believed with a blind belief. In fact he does not believe, he experiences. He experiences that he is himself the whole Being. There is a verse of a Hindustani poet which says:

Behind the human face God was hiding,
I did not know.
I veiled my eyes and was separated from Truth,
I did not know.

It is a very beautiful verse, and it has a deep meaning.

All of us have our God part and our man part. Man is made of two things, spirit and substance. The spirit is the finer part and the substance is the grosser part; the finer part, the spirit, has turned into the grosser part. One part is the external, limited self that we see, and the other is the unlimited being.

Man's external self is composed of the five elements, but in reality man is much larger and extends much further than we generally believe. For instance, when someone stands before an audience he appears to be of a certain size; but when he speaks he is as large as the area to which his voice carries. Although a friend or a beloved may be thousands of miles away he will feel our attachment, our affection. The feeling originates here, but manifests over there. This shows that in our feelings we are larger still.

The breath goes still further. By the breath we can send our thoughts wherever we wish, and we are able to know the thought and the condition of every being. The thought of someone who wishes to accomplish a certain thing reaches out in order to prepare it. Man is like a telescope: at one end there is the man part, the limited existence; and at the other end there is the God part, the unlimited Being. At one end we are so small; at the other we are so vast that we are the whole Being.

If each of us is so great, as great as the whole Being, we might ask how there can be room for so many of us. Are there then several whole Beings? There are not. Through our ignorance we see many and make distinctions saying: "This is I, that is you, this is a friend, that is an enemy, I like this one, that one I do not like." But in the hereafter all are connected; there we are all the same.

Man has two natures: Farishtagi, the angelic, and Hayvanat, the animal. Hayvanat means man's body and the part of his nature which needs food and drink and sleep and the satisfaction of all its passions. His anger and his jealousy are animal, also his fear of one who is stronger than himself. In all these man is the same as the animals.

Farishtagi is the part of his nature that goes back to its source. It is not man's intelligence; the animals also have intelligence, though the animals cannot ask, "From whence have I come? For what purpose am I here?" When man knows this, when he recognizes his origin, then he is a divine being. This angelic nature is his kindness, his love, his sympathy, and his desire for knowledge. A great Hindustani poet has said, "We created man for feeling; if not, for our praise the angels were enough in Heaven."

In his worship, man, thinking that he glorifies God, in reality reduces God. We take a part and call it "I." We occupy this part and thereby deduct this part from God. I remember that my murshid when he met with any difficulty used to say with a deep sigh, "Bandagi becharegi," which means, "By coming here, He has become helpless."

What connection is there between Allah and Bandeh, between God and man, and what connection is there between man and God? What we call "I" is formed by the impressions of the external world, of the world of illusion, which have fallen upon the soul. An infant will never say "I." If it has something in its hand and one takes it away, it does not care. It does not distinguish between old and young. Whoever comes near to it, friend or enemy, is the same to the infant. The intellect that recognizes things by their distinctions and difference has deluded the soul.

We can see that that which we call "I" is not the true nature of our soul because we are never really happy. Whatever we do, whatever we have, whatever power we possess, we can never be happy. We say that this or that makes us unhappy, but it is only the distance that makes us so; the soul is unhappy in its separation.

A person sees that his coat is worn and poor, and he says, "I am poor." He sees that his coat is grand and he thinks, "I am grand." It is not he who is grand, it is his coat. Whatever is before the soul, the soul recognizes as "I." But what is "I"? The coat is not I, because when the coat is taken off, the self remains. When we are not experiencing through the senses the consciousness still remains.

The Sufi, by the inactivity of the senses, by different postures and practices, produces stillness; and then by the repetition of the name of God he merges his consciousness in the whole Consciousness, in God. This has been understood by the Greek philosophers; it has also been understood by the Vedantists. The Sufi keeps to the adoration, the reverence that he has for God; he bows and postulates himself before God. And he gives the beautiful name of Beloved to God. He understands that by saying, "This too is God," he glorifies God; he does not reduce Him. With all his humility, with all his devotion, he realizes his oneness with the highest Being.

It is difficult to separate God from man; in reality there is no separation. God's action and man's action are the same; God's action is perfect and man's action is imperfect. We upon earth are dependent upon so many things. First of all we must eat. If he did not need to eat, man would not have to work; he could sit with his friends and think of God or of something else. Then he must sleep; and there are so many other necessities.

There is a verse of Zahir which says, "The seekers have lost themselves before they sought Thee." And the great poet Amir says, "Do not say that man is God for he is not God. And do not say that man is separate from God, for he is not separate."

It is not difficult to have occult or psychic powers; to be virtuous is not difficult, nor to keep our life pure. But to be merciful, to be compassionate, to be human, is difficult. God has many names: the Great, the Almighty, the Sovereign, but He is mostly called the Merciful and the Compassionate. In these qualities we are never perfect, and we never shall be. One should go into one's room at night and repent of what one has done, of all the thousand bad thoughts one a has had of friends and enemies. A Persian poet says, "The whole secret of the two worlds is in these words: with thy friends be loving, with thy enemies be courteous."

If we have understood this then this world is nothing; and if we have recognized that it is a passing thing, why not let others enjoy themselves while we look on? Why not let others put on a beautiful dress, while we look at it? Why not let others eat a good dinner, while we watch or stay in the kitchen and cook it? Why not let others sit in the carriage, and we pull it, instead of sitting in it ourselves and making others draw it? Keeping our life noble means being merciful and compassionate. But it is the tendency of every man to take what is best from another; even in friendship there is that tendency. All are seeking their own enjoyment and want to leave the worst to another; but if one is a seeker of God one should take the opposite way, even if it is contrary to all the world.

There are three courses: The first is renunciation - this is the way of the saints and the sages. It means following in the ideal and accepting whatever troubles and sorrows and ill-treatment may result. The second is selfishness, which means being more selfish than the rest of the world. The third is the greatest and the most difficult. It means having all the responsibilities, all the cares of life, friends and everything, and being as unselfish, as good as possible and yet just selfish enough not to be trampled upon.

If a person is turning round in a circle, the first time he goes slowly, the second time he goes faster, the fourth time he goes faster still, and the fifth, sixth, seventh, or eighth time he will fall down. The first time he experiences the joy of turning, the second and third and fourth times he experiences it more and more, till at last he is drunk with it and falls down and experiences it to the full. This is what the universe has been doing, night and day, from the creation till now. In every activity there is an intoxication. Whatever we do we wish to do more and more, whatever the action may be. If a man is a patriot he will be more and more patriotic. A singer will sing more and more songs until he loses his voice. If a person gambles he will want to do it more and more. If a person has been drunk or drugged he will want more and more of whatever drink or drugs may be.

Hafiz says, "Before sunrise the wine was poured out. The wine was borrowed from the eyes of Saki, the wine-giver."

Saki is the manifestation, which so intoxicates us that we believe that this is all that exists until we have become so enslaved by it that we cannot free ourselves any more.

Magnetism, by Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan

You know very well that you can be depleted of magnetism. You know that you can be full of magnetism. You know that there are some people who exercise an extraordinary magnetic attraction for you and there are some people who really charge you with energy by their being. There are people who rob you of your energy.

You know that there are different levels of magnetism. There's the magnetism of the body; there's the magnetism of the mind; there's the magnetism of the heart; there's the magnetism of the soul; and there's the magnetism of the Spirit.

Physical Magnetism

Now, the magnetism of the body you find in a person who is very vital, generally amongst younger people. In old age one loses this magnetism. Hopefully it is replaced by another form of magnetism, otherwise one is a very empty receptacle. This magnetism does depend upon quite a number of factors.

It depends upon first of all knowing how to replenish this magnetism. There are some very simple things, like the proper food, which seems very elementary; but it is only just these last decades that people are beginning to learn how to eat. It also includes the knowledge of being able to draw the magnetism of the different elements in one. It is the reason why in the purification practice Murshid talks about how he teaches one how to be able to

  • breathe in the magnetism of the earth as you are walking on the earth, and
  • breathe in the magnetism of the water as you are standing by a stream, and
  • the magnetism of the fire as, for example, by looking into the sun, of course, and
  • drawing the magnetism of the air in by walking in the wind, experiencing the vitality of the wind, and also
  • the magnetism of the ether when you look into outer space.

There are breathing practices corresponding to it: In through the nose and out through the mouth is Water; in through the mouth and out through the nose is Fire; in through the mouth and out through the mouth is Air. The other breath is the breath which becomes so light that it is hardly perceptible at all, when it is your magnetic field that is breathing instead of your physical body.

We are living absolutely the wrong way, there's no doubt about it. That's why one of the aspects of the New Age is communes, because (it allows people) to get back to nature. Living in boxes as we do, houses, is alright, as long as we still have contact with nature. In the cities we live the wrong way, and therefore it is not surprising that people are ill. Then people go on holidays, and what do they do? They go to beaches, which are crowded, and build themselves protection against the sun. I spoke yesterday about this rishi who sits in the snow. Of course it is no use for you to go out and sit on the ground all night if you haven't got yourself used to it. If you can gradually strengthen yourself you will have the strength to be able to withstand conditions which you would be surprised that you are ever able to do; and it is because of our weakening of our resistance that we are ill. We blame it on microbes, but if we are strong enough we can overcome the germs and microbes.

So first thing, harden yourselves, like, sleep on a hard bed. Get up and shake yourself and go into the cold air and do your breathing practices. Wash in cold water. Don't always try to protect yourself and be in a comfortable, protected atmosphere. Expose yourself to hardship. That's what will give you vitality. All of these people dying of heart attacks: no exercise! They are also eating the wrong foods. Millions of people are dying of heart attacks, and it is simply the result of not understanding the most basic principles of life.

Especially in middle-age, one has subjected one's body to so much strain, at that time you begin to feel the strain of it. Then you realize that one needs oxygen, one needs exercise. So keep yourself trim all the time, because you need Brother Ass in order to live on the planet.

It is very unfair to that lump of flesh that you inherited from the planet to treat it so badly. After all, it is the temple of God. So strain yourself a little bit beyond your means. Not too much, but increase the strain all the time. That's the thing to do! For all of us have a whim of overdoing it, and then you can spoil your health for good.

Now the other thing is evacuation, cleaning the tubes. There was a time that I always had colds. It has been a long time since I've had one. The reason is because the thing to do is wash the tongue every morning. I mean brush your tongue real hard with a brush, right to the back. That's a yoga technique, you wash the back of your throat. This is part of those tubes that get clogged up. One of the things I suffer from most is the bad breath of people. It is terribly annoying! You are speaking to people and you feel that bad breath and you know that they can't be healthy if they are entertaining all this poison in the mouth, which is the instrument of the Divine force of Breath.

The same applies to the nose. You can wash your nose every morning with water. There are tubes that you can buy in the health food stores that you can pour the water in one nostril and bring it out in the other.

You should know how to fast from time to time, and to take an enema. Fasting without an enema is a most dangerous thing. A lot of people do it. Clear your system out completely. There are finer channels which have to be unclogged. Of course, by running, the blood rushes through your veins and it unclogs quite a number of veins that are clogged up.

Breathing practices will do it. The very fine breath will reach into finer tubes in the body that Hazrat Inayat Khan speaks about and which are in fact the nerves.

The prana, well actually, even physically speaking, the oxygen that passes through the lungs, is brought into the blood stream, but after passing through the blood stream it passes into every cell of the body, including the nerves. There are certain asanas in yoga that are absolutely essential to bring vitality in the different nerves, that means in the whole network of nerves, and in the centers. And many of the practices that we've been doing in the seminars are to develop the chakras, which are the centers of the whole nervous system.

We have to take into account the action of the mind upon the body and the action of the body upon the mind. Remember that death is always produced when the body is unable to hold the soul. It has lost the magnetism to hold the soul. Between these two is the mind. When the body is unable to hold the mind, the mind is functioning without the body and doesn't need the body; and the body desperately tries to hang onto it, and it doesn't have enough magnetism to hold it. So it is the magnetism of the body that keeps you in life, and one has to know how to draw this magnetism in. Food is one means of drawing in that kind of energy that manifests itself finally in magnetism. You could say that the body is a transformer of energy. Food that is a substance of the earth has passed through the process of your body and been transformed into a magnetic field.

The magnetic field is what holds your body together. In fact, the magnetic field is the womb of your body. It existed before your body was formed. Inside the womb of the mother the magnetic field is drawing the cells of nourishment into a pattern. It is the magnetic field that is the mold. After the body has been formed the magnetic field unfolds as a consequence of the unfoldment of the body. After the death of the body the magnetic field will continue to live. So it is very important to know how to keep your magnetic field in a good state. Remember that consciousness of the magnetic field will increase it.

First of all, feel your magnetic field. Identify yourself with the magnetic field and breathe through the magnetic field. When you exhale feel the expansion of the magnetic field, and as you inhale feel the contraction and, at the same time the, packing-in of all that energy that seems to be compressed. You know how you can go about the world being so conscious of your magnetic field that you hesitate passing through a door because it is not big enough to let your magnetic field pass through it. That's when it is really effective. When you are really conscious, your consciousness is not here but there. That's where you are: there. That will give you a lot of strength. You have to watch your magnetic field. See what situations are robbing you of your magnetism. You felt fine until you met that person, and now it's all gone. The reciprocal is true, that you can rob people of their magnetic field. When you find that people are trying to run away from you, that's what it is. It is you robbing them of their magnetism. It might not be the physical magnetic field, it might be another at some level, but still that is what's happening. So you can test your magnetism by seeing how people react to you, because it is a give-and-take of magnetism between one battery to another. That's what people are, they are batteries of energy; and the greatest thing that you can do to a person is to give him energy, to give him life. So don't rob people of their magnetic field.

But on the other hand it is in the nature of life that energy is communicated from one being to another, and there are some beings whose magnetism is so great and who desire to give you their magnetism and therefore it is perfectly alright for you to take their magnetism in. It is something that you have to feel, but there is a law here which Hazrat Inayat Khan talked about, and that is that the extent of your physical magnetism is rather limited. Once it is been expended, well, then it is been expended, Whereas the magnetism of the mind, and the magnetism of the heart, and the magnetism of the soul, each one of these is wider. Let's say that your store of magnetism is greater. So you can have, like I said, in old age very little magnetism of the body but much more magnetism on the other levels. The fact is, how much physical magnetism can you give to a person is very little. Then, soon you are exhausted. But the store of magnetism of your soul is so great that you can give them a lot and you won't be depleted. So people will try to draw upon your physical magnetism and you have to know how to prevent them from drawing upon your physical magnetism and give them of your soul magnetism. That's where you must avoid letting them draw you into your physical consciousness but maintain yourself in your soul consciousness. Then you can give them the magnetism of your soul instead of the magnetism of your body.

Mental Magnetism

The magnetism of the mind is a form of life which is communicated by people. For example, people are in a room and there is a dull person there and everybody feels very dull and all of a sudden a bright person comes in with a lot of wit and in no time everybody feels better. That's the miracle of the magnetism of the mind. It is magnetism, you see. It is something that manifests itself in speech, but it can even manifest itself in the glance of a person. You can see right away those who are quick to pick up things and communicate meaningfulness to another person. There are those who have a kind of electricity in their minds, and just immediately it gives you life again. Whereas the mind itself can be depleted of its energy by boredom. Challenging thoughts will immediately give vitality to the mind.

The same thing with the body. You think that you need a lot of sleep, but might find that you can deplete your body by too much sleep, and develop the ability of going into deep sleep fast. I said the other day that there's a curve of sleep, like the first few minutes or hours it takes until one goes right down into deep sleep, and then the curve comes back again. The most precious time is that period, which might be just one hour or two hours of deep sleep in the night. So if you can get into just that deep sleep right away and stay in deep sleep a little longer, then you are able to sleep less long, whereas there are people who sleep superficially and don't get the proper rest. It isn't necessarily so that physical sleep is a help to you, but you have to know how to sleep.

The same is true of the mind. The mind can develop a kind of boredom which is very depleting of your energy, and you have to know how to stimulate your mind by perhaps reading a book if you are home, something that really gives you impetus; and it will give you magnetism. And remember that the magnetism of each plane can be communicated to the next plane, and so the magnetism of the mind will communicate itself, for example, to the physical body. The same thing is true, of course, that it can communicate itself higher.

Heart Magnetism

The magnetism of the heart you find among persons who are just so full of love and kindness. They come in a room and everybody's hearts open, and another person just can't do it. You wonder what is the difference? Well, the difference is because this person has killed his ego and really cares for people, and the other person might try to be loving but isn't really because he doesn't really care in the bottom of his soul, it is just a sort of superficial thing. It is much more worthwhile than the magnetism of the mind.

There is a story of Abdul Qader Jilani. He was a very great Sufi, and people would have followed him to death because he just entered into their hearts. His son was a scholar. He came back from the university and they thought, "Let's hear the son give a talk." Well, nobody smiled. It was a very scholarly talk. Nobody was very impressed, and people seemed to be a little bit bored. Then somebody [else] asked if he would speak. He said something about a chicken and an egg and an egg and a chicken, and everybody was in tears. So it was just his being that opened the hearts of all beings.

This is the magnetism of the heart. Remember that you can only hold this magnetism if you really don't wish anything for yourself. The person who calculates, "What am I getting out of this?", has lost the magnetism of the heart. You can have another magnetism maybe, but you can't have the magnetism of the heart. So maybe you think, "Well, after all, I've done all this work; now if only I could just have an ice cream!", even that will take it away from you! Just the thought, this kind of self-pity: "I wish I could have something", that will do it. The person who has given himself absolutely in dedication to service, that's the one who is loved by all, and people feel it! Don't think that they don't! Oh yes, people can put on a show. There are gurus today who travel in Rolls Royces and have a golden throne. For a time people are impressed by it. But in the end it is the heart that will win.

Soul Magnetism

Then there is the magnetism of the Soul. That magnetism is such a powerful magnetism. It will heal much more than the physical magnetism. That's why I'm stressing these different forms of magnetism, instead of just speaking about healing with physical magnetism, or the magnetism of the body; because that will reach so far and no further, whereas the magnetism of the soul will immediately have an effect upon people. The magnetism of the soul comes from the sincerity of the heart. When you have awakened and you are conscious of being a soul and not being a body and a mind, that's when this magnetism develops. In other words, realization gives you magnetism. So if you want to know how to develop this particular magnetism -- it is not the highest of all magnetisms, but it is the next highest of all -- the way to do it is through realization of your real being, by not allowing yourself to be taken into the disillusion of the personal self. In other words, by being God-conscious. It is God realization. It is this God realization that will make a person able to perform miracles.

I already told you the story of when Murshid went and healed this baby, where actually he gave a blessing to the mother and the child was cured.

There's the story of al-Hallaj, who was invited to the court of the king. The son of the king was dying. They were desperately in search of someone who could heal him. The king ordered them to find someone who can heal him or resurrect him, or something. Then they found this dervish, Al Hallaj, who was lost in Divine contemplation, and they said, "Come along quickly, come to the palace! The son of the king has died!"

And he said, "Bismillah! In the name of God, arise!" And nothing happened. So then he said: "In my name, arise!" and the boy stood up.

Then, of course, the orthodox of Islam were furious that he should have said such a thing that is absolutely contrary to the law of Islam, challenging the will of God by his will. So they beat him to death.

The fact is that when he said, "In my name," he was conscious of the Divine Being. That is why it was effective. Otherwise he couldn't have healed. One is conscious of being God. That's the reason that Al Hallaj was crucified, for saying that. You can say "I am God" only when your "I" does not mean "me." I mean, it does not mean the individual person, then you can say it, whoever it is in you that says it.

This is the secret of healing. One says that to heal, one should be an instrument of the Divine Power of healing. That's the first stage. But the second stage is that one has to be the Divine Power of healing.

The same is true of the teachings of Ibn al-Arabi. So many people these days have been absolutely thrilled by the discovery of Ibn al-Arabi because his philosophy just the most exciting metaphysics you could possibly come across:

"I am the eyes through which God sees." "God can only see as much through me as I am able to see of myself through Him." "In contemplating me, He contemplates Himself."

All of these far-out views of the mind which express a vision of reality seen from different angles at the same time: that's Ibn al-Arabi.

Then you come to Al Hallaj, and he says,

"I am not the eyes through which God sees. I am the Divine Glance."

It is a matter of realization. It is like the different stages that we talked about. At one stage you are still in the maqam when you I are conscious of your being. If you are conscious of your being, at least think of yourself as being the instrument. When you are not conscious of your being, then it is the Divine Consciousness that comes through. That's when you can heal.

There is so much about how to develop healing in your hands, and in your eyes, and in the water, and things like that, those are techniques, and we'll be speaking about them. They are all important, but it is your state of consciousness that will make all the difference in your healing.

You may have some physical magnetism in your hands. You can adopt techniques that will bring the magnetism right down into your fingertips. A violinist has all this magnetism in the ends of his fingers; that's how he's able to play. But how long will the cure be able to operate that you have been able to, the transfusion, let's say, of energy from your finger tips, how long is that going to be able to hold out? You would have to be there all the time with the patient to keep the patient in a good state, whereas, the magnetism of the soul performs miracles. That's the reason Jesus could heal, because he wasn't a healer, it was just because he had reached that consciousness that enables one to heal. It is a communication of life; it is the ability to communicate life.

Magnetism of the Spirit by Pir Vilayat

I should speak about the magnetism of the Spirit that is, really, still beyond the magnetism of the Soul. I don't know whether one can speak about it at all. It is because of the importance of this magnetism that in my seminars I have been giving practices like, for example, going to the source of life and experiencing the water of life and the communication of the Holy Spirit, and experiencing the life of your life. And we've been doing the practice Hu - Hayy. The Spirit is the origin of the Soul.

You may reach a point when you experience yourself as being a soul, or as being the Soul even, because there is not really such a thing as a soul. There is just Soulness, at every level the merging of beings is more intense. At the top it is just One Being, and at the bottom, let's say, there is a relative autonomy of the individuals, in multiplicity. But the Spirit is beyond. There are several ways to use the word Spirit. I'm not talking about spirits in the sense of spirit phantoms or anything like that, or spiritism, but Spirit, in the real sense, like the Spiritus in the Latin sense of the word and, of course, Quddus in the Ruh-al Quddus in the Arabic. That is the essence. That is the perfume of the rose. The Soul is the seed of the plant. That is the difference. The word is used in Arabic as Ayn. This is the meaning of resurrection. What is it? You are drawing the essence of the essence of the essence of the essence. The attar of roses, for example, that's the Spirit. When one says "the Holy Spirit," that is what it means. The Holy Spirit is not an angel, because an Angel is a soul, where Spirit is not a soul; it is beyond a soul. So if you can experience the life of your life, you experience it as being something that is flowing through you, like the energy behind energy. We talk about prana. Well, prana is cosmic energy at a certain level, but Spirit is the energy of that energy. That is what we mean by Spirit. It is always something beyond, always the essence of something, the life of your life.

As you know, all Sufis belong to the tradition of Khidr, who is called the green man in the desert, and who appears to the initiates sometimes, a mysterious being who is always present in any real initiation. He is he same person as Elijah, and Elijah is always linked with the water of life. So if you can draw the power of healing from the water of life, from the source of life, that is where your healing will be effective. That is a higher level than the level of the Soul. It was in order to promote this consciousness that the tradition of the Virgin Mary arose. It is the immaculate state. It is only through an extreme purification of body, mind, heart and soul that one reaches into the consciousness of the Spirit. It is only the being who is immaculate, who is first of all the instrument of the Spirit and then, secondly, becomes pure Spirit. There are some people, it is very rare, but you can find people who are just pure Spirit! They are so fine, so delicate, pure Spirit, just Life! There's no matter, hardly any matter there, just Life. The penetration of that Life is like a transfusion of Life. Actually that is what healing is: it is a transfusion of Life. It is just like a blood transfusion.

There are all kinds of levels of life, so you have to heed what kind of magnetism you are introducing in this organism. There are organisms that will refuse a foreign agent that it is not in harmony with. So if you introduce, for example, a magnetiseuse, I don't know, I suppose you have them also in America, (who) just have a lot of magnetism and they may be reasonably good people, and I'm sure that they can do a lot of good to a lot of people, but there are some people that are so sensitive that they would become ill by being subjected to their magnetism. It just means that their magnetism is too gross for the magnetism of the patient. As I said, it is limited; whereas the very fine magnetism is always absorbed by all beings, the magnetism of the Spirit, there is room for it in every being. The grosser magnetism can be too gross for you.

The other thing that we have to take into account is that the transfusion of life will give an extra impulse to the organism in its fight, because that is what an illness is, the organism is involved in a battle. The whole of life is a battle. The body is in a state of battle against the vultures that are trying to make it into a prey. Everywhere in nature, just look at the plant life, you'll find that there are parasites that live on the plants. Parasites live on the animals, which is natural; but survival is always the ability of the organism to overcome the inroads of the parasites upon itself. Parasites represent the lower kingdoms, but, we are parasites too, you know. We are living on other organisms. It is one of the tragedies of life, that life can only be promoted by one being living on other beings. It is a fact. You might say, "Well, I'm a vegetarian," but you're still living on vegetables, and vegetables, as we know, still feel pain. You can say, "Well, it is being dedicated to God." Yes, but still, there is pain involved in the process. It is true that that thought brought certain hermits, like, for example, Ibrahim Ibn Adam, Buddha talked about this several times, to the point of letting the organisms come and feed on them, like the worms were feeding on them. There was an ants' nest on Buddha's head and, of course, the body would soon be eaten up by the microbes and by the germs unless there was some resistance, or at least some power in the body to resist inroads.

Now, this is what healing is: You are giving the body an extra push, but the body has to be able to assimilate the energy that you are giving; and, also, the body has to be able to learn how to produce it is own energy. It is been depleted so that it is lost the ability to produce its own energy and you have to now give it an extra push, but you can only help a person to help himself.

What, for the scientist, is germs and microbes and viruses (actually, viri), which haven't been seen as far as I know, except perhaps maybe they see some of the larger ones in electronic microscopes, but the fact is that science has been able to ascertain the existence of microorganisms that can multiply at a tremendous rate and will live on the organism or maybe live on the microbes which are necessary for the organism, which may account for cancer. Anyway, from as much as can be ascertained from the point of view of, let's say, the instruments of scientific research, each one of these organisms is a being. Actually, every cell in our body is a being, and we have millions of beings in us, and that means that they are endowed with, there's no such thing as a completely independent existence, but they are endowed with a consciousness. They're endowed with a soul, they're endowed with a spirit. Millions, millions, millions of beings within the body, some that constitute what we call the body, others that constitute what we call parasites that are trying to fight to live on the body, like the mistletoe on the trees, it is the same principle, or ivy.

There's no doubt that if these beings have a reality, that means that they also exist at the mind level, and that physical illnesses are in some way associated with our thinking. For example, a person with a lot of anxiety will develop ulcers, and a person who is burning himself out in his emotions will develop tuberculosis, and a person who is holding back on his emotions will develop cancer. Cancer is like a revenge of the physical organism that is multiplying because it is being restrained. It is a question of proliferation, you know, and there is a balance of forces in nature.

In ecology one is beginning to discover these things, and supposing if you allowed, well, I'll give you an example: There was a leper colony and the rats were eating the feet of the lepers, and nobody could sleep because the rats would just walk over your bed, and they weren't even afraid of a stick. It was because they killed the cobras. Then the doctor who was running this home made a covenant with the cobras, and the cobras increased and the rats decreased. It is a case of the balance of ecology in the world, and people are discovering more about it nowadays. So we need certain parasites. We call them parasites, maybe in our body, like germs that are good and others that are not. Perhaps there is a balance between them, or perhaps there are too many. I spoke to you of that man who was controlling all these monsters. Well, the human will has the ability to control the minds of these beings. If you can do it you can heal yourself. And you can heal others. It takes a lot of power, of course. As we said before, the whole purpose of life is mastery. You have to become a master of all conditions.

Now I'm saying this, and I can become ill, and, of course, it isn't true to say that there are a lot of masters who have been ill. It is not true to say that a perfect being or a master cannot be ill. You shouldn't pass a judgment about things. There are a lot of factors. Perhaps one has to experience the suffering of the world in one's flesh, karmic participation in suffering . I don't subscribe to the theory that if people are ill it is because they're re-paying a karma. We talked about karma the other day and we said that that could be one reason; but there are other reasons, like the testing that one has to undergo, and the fact that one is sharing cosmic karma.

You remember the question that was put to Jesus: "Why are these people born blind or lame?" You know, they were thinking that he might have confirmed the theory of reincarnation. "Was it because of their parents?" No, no, it was so the works of God may be accomplished. So there was some planning in it. There was some reason for these illnesses that maybe we cannot understand with our mind. I know we are perplexed and say, "Well, why is this child born blind?", or, "How is it possible that this person suffers from paralysis?", and so on. Why does this happen? Well, we don't always know the plan. When we know the plan then we'll understand it, but for the moment we can say, What can we do?

There is such a thing as intercession, for example; you can intercede for somebody. That is what a lawyer does. He, the barrister, intercedes. What does it mean to intercede? Do you know what it means? It means to take upon yourself part of the karma of the person. That is what it means to intercede. You cannot heal a person unless you would rather have the illness. You are interfering in the Divine Plan, but you are part of the Divine Plan. So God wishes you to intervene in the Divine Plan; otherwise He wouldn't have given you free will. It is something that you are taking upon yourself that means that there is no yourself, because there is just God, but still there is within the greater self a karmic involvement which has its consequences. You know, you picked a child up from the street who is begging. Well then, you have the responsibility, that child was begging. And you've taken an animal out of nature, and that animal was able to fend for itself. You've taken a bird from the nest, you've taken away its possibility for survival now. You are responsible for it. You can't thrust it back in nature again because it hasn't got the power to defend itself. That is what healing is. You have intervened in a situation in which there was a certain balance. That balance is not perfect anyway, but it is a balance. You have intervened, right? Well, from that moment you're involving yourself karmically. You are involving yourself karmically with those little beasties that are trying to destroy that person. So you got them all at your doorstep, right?

It is just like if you exorcise a person, it is the same thing. You get them knocking at your door. Those spirits, they have been living on a person. You have disturbed their life and they don't like it. They don't have anyplace to live. They come and say, "Look here, you have deprived us of our existence!" I know some exorcists whose life has become a complete hell. It is only a very powerful person who can become an exorcist. The responsibility you are taking upon yourself is tremendous. Like Hazrat Inayat Khan, there was a lady who came to him and said, "Oh, I'm obsessed by this being all the time. There are two persons in me. It is so terrible! I'm so confused! I can't go on living like this." Actually, it was the person whom she loved and who was killed during the war. So Murshid said to her, "You're sure that you want to be free of this obsession?" "Oh, yes, Murshid, I can't go on like this!" "All right," said Murshid, "all right." He spoke to the spirit and it is almost as simple, it is like saying, "Go away." You wouldn't believe it, but he went. She came back a few days afterwards and said, "Oh, I feel so poor in myself like this. Oh, please, could you bring him back?" Murshid said, "All right, but once I bring him back I won't be able to exorcise him again. Are you sure that you want him back?" "Yes, I do! I do! Yes!" "All right," said Murshid, "all right."

You see, you have to respect the will of a person. You can't heal a person against his will. If they don't want to be healed, you have to ask their permission before you place them on your healing list. They might not want to be placed on the healing list. Actually, some people wish to be ill. They are only happy if they are ill. It gives them something to talk about. You take away their illness and they feel just empty. Illness fulfills a function in life. If not, it wouldn't be there. It is like an abscess that brings out all the impurities. There is a reason for it. It can get out of hand, but the original cause, as all causes, all purposes, are the Divine Impulses. Don't blame God for illnesses. The Divine Impulse got out of hand because people didn't know how to deal with it. Then that lady came back to Murshid again and said, "You said you couldn't exorcise me again, but do you think you could?" Then he said, "All right, but I will never be able to bring him back again."

Now we are coming across everyday miracles which we're discovering and yet they have been there all the time. I don't know if you have seen a film of the operations in the Philippines without surgical instruments. You wouldn't believe it. I've seen them, and actually, one reaches a point when one thinks that it must be trick photography. It's not possible. But I know people who have been there, who have had operations done to them.

This man takes a big rusty knife and he scratches an abscess off the eye of a person and it is all bleeding. That person stands there and doesn't move. Then he softly blows "Foooooh," and the person recovers and looks quite baffled and is able to see. This is actually what I've seen.

Then there is a patient in agony, lying on that filthy table. No precautions to hygiene at all, and this man with his own hands, with dirty nails, starts grabbing inside this body. All the blood is gushing out. One should perhaps get those films. And then he's pulling and pulling on this part which he is pulling out, you know, an abscess or something like that. The patient lies there absolutely still, as though actually hypnotized, because he doesn't know it. Then all he does is put his hands like this with the skin. And the skin, you can see the skin actually coming together, and all the blood is stopped. No more blood rushing. And the person stands up and is healed and walks back home. No ambulance.

They do the same thing with a brain operation. There was this man working behind the eye of a man, and he couldn't get through with the knife so he got an old rusty wire and poked that up through behind the eye. Anyway, that is what I have seen. I'm not telling you something. Really, I have seen it.

Perhaps one day those methods will be introduced in our hospitals. For the moment, the medical profession is already very much on the defensive with all the new methods that are coming in.

There are new methods coming in, like being able to diagnose by looking into the eyes, and new things coming in now that are not new because they were used right in the time of the old Egyptians. Back in the past, people had relied on certain very narrow methods of cure which are beginning to prove unsatisfactory, or not altogether satisfactory. They had their disadvantages. You can cure a lot of illnesses now with antibiotics, and at least now there's an immediate stoppage of the assault of the germs; but the consequences to the organism in the long run are absolutely disastrous.

Other methods are slower but may be in the long run more effective. You can use certain herbs. You know that the ancients used to follow the bears in the forest to see what herbs they were eating under certain circumstances and that is how they found out the curative powers of herbs. We're beginning to discover quite a lot of things, the effects of different herbs, of different drugs, of roots, of the difference between, for example, the grain and the fruit.

For example, in Oshawa methods it is all the difference between being a tomato and being a cactus. The wiry types, like the Japanese are more wiry and so they don't need so much fluid, so much, the lush thing about the fruit, the yin aspect - they will develop the yang aspect. If you subject the European temperament to, well I'm generalizing a bit too much now, but let's say there's a temperament that is a little more lush and not that wiry, and if you subject them to the Oshawa method they dry up. You have a lot of people really drying up. Whereas, on the other hand, for people who are proliferating too much, of course that means that they're eating too much and that is why this method is a good cure for cancer. It is because you have to get back to really basic things, the root, you see. Then you get to eat cereals, or buckwheat, or something like that, really hard cereal. It will give you strength, whereas if you eat fruits and things like that, then you get into what is the end of the process of growth, and the degeneration has set in the end process in the fruit. Then, all the energy of the fruit is in the formation of the grain of the fruit. If you eat the fruit you don't get the real energy because it is being prepared in the seed.

We'll reach a point when we will realize that we can gain much more energy by eating the seed. All things that have grown a little further, like in the case of meat, for example, beef, a lot of toxins are in beef because it is been involved in life, whereas the very young animal would be better to eat if you're not a vegetarian. If you're a vegetarian, as I say, you'll find that cereals are much more important than fruit. There is something in fruit that cereals can't give, vitamins and so on; but still you will find that you will have to bring your diet more and more to the mineral, to the seeds. On the other hand, you'll have to find just the right balance according to your nature, and not just be too dogmatic about it.

In falconry, there's something I know about when a falcon is ill. You can sometimes save its life by giving it chicks that come out of the egg. You see, that is because the life force is there before it has developed toxins, and as soon as it becomes a chicken then it doesn't have the same value any more. A lot of things that we'll be learning about food and how to balance. There are things that we don't know about. How many vitamins are necessary for life? How to use proteins? The seeds that have the best proteins are beans, for example, which we cook and of course we ruin completely all the food value by cooking them. And then, on the other hand, we don't know how to eat them raw, you see. Soy beans, for example. So if we learn how to be able, as the ancients used to do, to make a powder of them and predigest them. There is a lot of science that we are just putting our hands on now.

Like in India, it is a very secret knowledge, but I'm revealing it to you now, it is a way of rejuvenation. That is, you go on a retreat, and you select a very wonderful cow. And somebody prepares wonderful meals, with cereals and fruit and rich cream and all kinds of marvelous food and you give it to the cow. Then you drink the milk of the cow until you have milk intolerance, just gallons of milk. I don't know how one does it, because medically there's just so much milk that you can stand. Gorging yourself with milk of that cow that has been overfed, apparently you come back and all your white hair is gone, which some people would like, and your wrinkles are gone, and I don't know if that is the kind of thing people would like.

With all your good will to heal people with your magnetism you can do a lot of harm. That is the reason why Hazrat Inayat Khan instituted the service of healing. The fact that it is not just one person is already a help, that they are linking themselves as instruments of the Divine Power of Healing, so that it eliminates a lot of ego. Also, because it is done in a prayerful way, so people are really dedicated to a higher consciousness; whereas, if you're there facing a patient the ego is involved. It is very difficult to get rid of it. And because, as I said, your magnetism may be just too gross for the patient, and you're doing the patient harm.

Be very careful, particularly of certain cases, for example, cancer.

  • The warmth of your human magnetism will just make the cancer proliferate much more. You have to treat the patient with a cool healing atmosphere, not a warm one.
  • Be careful, if you're in a state like a madhjubiat with his feel of fire in your being, don't approach a being who is already blazing. You have to be very cool.
  • You have to know how to bring cool magnetism in your hand and how to bring warm magnetism in your hand.
  • You have to know how to draw through your fingers the polluted magnetism away from the patient, and you have to know how to reverse the energy and send out energy through your hands.
  • You have to know when to press with your fingers in the flesh of the person, when to hold your hands above the body of the person, how far to hold the hand above the body, how to earmark exactly the spot where is the source of the disease.
  • And remember that just curing the cause is not curing the patient. You have to cure the cause of the cause. All good doctors know that.
  • In fact the hands are only one means, and there are cases where your hands would communicate too gross a magnetism, and where you should use your breath because you can breathe over your hand and by so doing you are able to sweep the magnetism that is warm, maybe warm magnetism of the hand, over towards the patient by your breath and your breath will make this magnetism finer, will make it digestible by the person. Maybe it might be better to do that than breathe directly on the person.

There are so many different circumstances you have to consider.

  • You may, of course, find that you feel that you can breathe directly on the part that is affected.
  • Then there's again the warm breath and there's the cool breath, the warm breath when the mouth is open, cool breath when the lips are closed.
  • You can, for example, put cloth on the person's body, the part that is affected, and blow warmth through your lips; and the lips are, of course, very strong center of magnetism.
  • You have to know how to use your glance, and, of course, your glance has to be very pure. You can use your glance on the part of the body that is affected.
  • You can use your glance through the glance of the person.
  • You can use your mind.
  • You can actually talk to the minds of the molecules of the beings that are affecting the person.
  • You have to know how to talk to the person concerned, and free him from all the mind trips that he's going through in his illness.

And then what is much more important is that the illness in the body is not only a symptom of the illness in the magnetic field of the person, but also in all his higher bodies. So, you cure the physical body and the higher bodies are still ill and so the physical body gets ill again, so you're not beating the problem. You have to see where the cause of the illness is, not just in the mind, but in the soul of the person, the heart of the person. Then enter into communion with that person and perhaps give them a spiritual practice which will cure the psychological cause of the physical ailment. So you see that healing is not that simple a thing.

The highest form of healing is faith. The greatest miracles have happened just by faith, and it wasn't by the intervention of a person, or a place, like Lourdes [France] for example. They think that it is going to Lourdes. You don't have to go to Lourdes for it, but as people think that's where they'll get it, well then of course it will happen that way. It is also true to say that in those places where people converge their thoughts and aspirations, higher beings come; they descend upon those places. That is the meaning of a temple, because otherwise the real temple of God is the body of man.

You can pray anywhere you like, but there are some places that are more sacred than others, because either a holy being has lived there for some time and their presence has left an atmosphere that continues for ages and which would be worn out if it weren't for the people that come there and pilgrimage, and who strengthen the atmosphere of that place, like a djiner for example. As I talked about the other day, there are some places that are holy spots, meccas, because there was, one day, a being, in the case of Mecca it was Abraham, who prayed there or made a wish there and the heavens were moved by his prayer and the angels came, descended upon that place. That place is protected by the angels, and whatever one builds there, it won't take away anything except that, of course, it wears down a little bit in time unless people are able to come there and maintain their prayers at that place.

That is why, when I saw those orthodox nuns at the top of the Mount of Olives, I realized that they were protecting that place from being desecrated. Just nearby, there were people quarreling and throwing banana peels on the ground, or children throwing stones at each other and so on. Those were the places where Jesus had been and was walking in the last stations of the cross, and so on, and that those orthodox priests, well, nuns, were there and they felt that their object was just to protect this place so that it would remain a place where people can find inspiration. And you will find that is true. You will find under the tree of Buddha, for example, the bodhi tree in Bodhgaya, they used to sit there the whole night, and somehow the being of Buddha is more present there than elsewhere, although he is present everywhere, but still, the atmosphere is there.

You go to the tomb of St. Francis in Assisi and they built a wonderful cathedral. There's no atmosphere in the cathedral, and you go there just next to the sarcophagus and his being is so strong. So sometimes going to places will be helpful. It is a strength of faith of the person that heals him; but still, healing is performed by angels who have become used to being present in that spot. Healing is the victory of spirit over matter.

There is a saying of Pir-O-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan: "I am the wine of the holy sacrament. My very being is intoxication. Those who drink of my cup and yet keep sober will certainly be illuminated, but those who do not assimilate it will be beside themselves and exposed to the ridicule of the world."

That you must have felt in the course of all the different states of mind and all the emotions and all the states of consciousness that we have shared during these days. Perhaps you've felt the particular salt, the particular yeast, of the Message, which is of course the essence of Sufism, and that is exaltation, ecstasy. The word that is used by the Sufis is hal, or wajd, which is the most precious thing there is in the world. The most precious thing that you can ever give to another being is perhaps to say one word that touches their soul and that they'll never forget for the rest of their life. Perhaps just a glance or a gesture or something that uplifts the soul.

One cannot live by bread alone; one also needs wine. So, of all the utilitarian things that we are seeking for in our life, there is that perfume, there is that thing which cannot be accounted for by all the demands of life in which is the only thing that really makes life worthwhile living. If you watch through your life and think of the moments that were really worthwhile living, you will realize that they were the moments when you were so intoxicated, when you were so in love, when you were so shattered, when you were so exhilarated, so overwhelmed, that nothing made sense and everything made sense, because it didn't make sense and nothing mattered and everything mattered, and, well, you were in that state of inebriation or intoxication. It is epitomized of course by the drunken man, and of course the Sufis are always speaking in terms of drunkenness. Although, as you know, wine was forbidden by Islam, and I think it's possible that even Omar Khayyam, who speaks about it so much, probably never partook of that substance that we call wine, but it was the spiritual wine of ecstasy that they were referring to. It is what in America is called being high. It is something that everyone experiences from their birth. There are moments when one s heart beats faster, and when it burns more intensely by more intense flame; and, of course, the height of that moment is the moment of awakening, when all of a sudden all of the forces of life have broken through into a kind of climax of awakening.

Everyone is intoxicated with some kind of wine, and you have to be intoxicated to see the intoxication of others. That is why this madhjub, who was standing in the streets of Calcutta, was able to laugh as he did because he was so intoxicated that he could see. The drunken person will always recognize another drunken person, just like a thief will always recognize a thief in the middle of the city, and birds of a feather flock together. So you will experience that intoxication. Youth experiences it in the intoxication of the children for their toys. They're so excited about their toys. They can't go to sleep without their toys. Then there's the intoxication of youth, of being in love for the first time, of discovering the mysteries of the body, of discovering the whole excitement of life. There's a tremendous intoxication.

Hazrat Inayat Khan described all the different stages that one goes through in life. In five stages, each one is a different form of intoxication.

  1. The first one is the one of youth of course, which is just like a butterfly that is so fascinated by everything. One is ready to spring into the fire, and everything is just really so fascinating and one doesn't care for the morrow and it is all wonderful, and when they cry it seems like the worst tragedy on earth and the moment is all gone. It is just pure intoxication.

  2. Then there's the intoxication of the person who has begun to be conscious of his ego. In fact, the ego grows with youth, and that is often the reason why, well, unless it were for spiritual unfoldment, generally people are better when they are young than later on in life. If it were not for spiritual development a lot of people lose that wonderful spontaneity and innocence of youth. The reason is because the ego develops. It is part of the unfoldment of the human being, of the soul coming on earth. It is like the core of individuality, like a focal center that has to unfold. As one descends the ego becomes stronger. In fact, the world makes it so. For example, if you don't affirm yourself, they will walk over your dead body. You have to. You realize at the time, well, you are doing things right and you wonder, you know, people take advantage of you and of your innocence, and finally you feel, well, I must make a life for myself, and I must have a house, and I must have a family, and so on and so forth. So eventually this whole spontaneity of youth disappears and there's a need for you to affirm yourself, affirm the ego.

  3. And that is another intoxication which comes in; that is, the intoxication of one becomes so interested in things, one learns so much, all the nature of the atoms and the planets and the nature of the plants and the nature of human beings and the world is so fascinating the more one learns, and then, when one develops the spiritual knowledge and wants to find out, like Buddha, for example, the cause of existence, one feels like dismounting the whole mechanism and seeing how it all ticks. So that is a passion. It's a real fascination. A scientist in his laboratory working with all this organic and inorganic matter, and the physicist with all his gadgets, it's a real fascination, an intoxication!

  4. Then there's a strange intoxication that takes over people at the certain time when they feel that everything seems to be not worthwhile. People are deceptive and they're caught up in their trips. One meets ingratitude, and one wonders, What am I toiling for? There comes a time when one feels that one has exposed one's emotions to other people and they have betrayed one. There's a time of course, when there's a tendency to withdraw; and its all right if one has already lived very intensely. That is the time to develop this intoxication for the wilderness, a need to leave everything and go into the wilderness. A real need. Find yourself amongst the rocks in the snow with a clear sky away from everything. The tremendous attraction of the being who has become completely peaceful, completely empty of himself, it is a tremendous attraction. People will give up their whole life to follow the path of sanyassin in India.

  5. Then, the next intoxication, I don't know whether perhaps it is sobriety, is the fifth state, in which you come back into the world again and you just enjoy it all. Not like the child any more, because you've gone through so many stages in between; but you enjoy the fact that people enjoy themselves, and you share in the sufferings of all beings, and you share in the ignorance, and you don't try to show self as knowing any more or being any better. You are just playing the game. Then you give assistance to every being that you can, and that is the state of perfection. It is the fifth state, and each one of these states is a state of intoxication.

We need exaltation, as I said, in order to live; and, as a matter of fact, you may meditate for hours and hours and days and days and months and months and. months, and years and years, doing all the things that were prescribed, and nothing happens. Then all of a sudden you come in contact with a being who is intoxicated himself, and you are carried beyond yourself and in that moment you have done more progress than in all those years of hard work practicing. And that is the reason for the gurus, if they are gurus. The guru is the one who sweeps you off your feet, I mean your personal feet, into Divine Consciousness, who lifts you upon wings of ecstasy. He is the one who performs the fana', that is, the annihilation, of your opinion, and the baqa', which means the eternalization of Divine understanding. I'll say that again: the fana' of opinion, it is zikr, actually, the fana' of opinion in the baqa' of Divine realization.

His being can act so powerfully upon you that, as I say, you are shattered in everything that you ever thought and everything that you ever knew and everything that you ever felt. There's no emotion that can come anywhere near the emotion of ecstasy. You might have experienced extremes of despair and tremendous joy, and yet this is something different, something unexplainable in words. You may find that his presence is such that it burns you. Shams Tabriz, when he was in a state of incandescence, said, "Don't come near me, don't come near me. You will burn, you will burn. Keep away, keep away!" And the others are so completely peaceful that you feel as though you were at the source of all life, in that snow countryside that I've often talked about.

Of course, there are many things that give you ecstasy. Apart from a being, you can have ecstasy looking at the immensity of space, by the fact that your consciousness is free from the tyranny of your ego, just looking into a clear sky or into moonlight, or looking at that wonderful array of colors at dawn that you see sometimes, all those different shades of colors and the brilliance of the light. Something that gives you a feeling of splendor, the splendor of the heavenly realms. You can experience it by the vertigo that you experience at the top of the mountain, when you feel annihilated by the greatness of the mountain; because exaltation always has to do with fana', it always has to do with annihilation, and with baqa', which means to survive the annihilation, but transformed.

Sometimes you may experience exaltation by watching the beautiful smile of a child; or, if you have humbled yourself before someone, perhaps someone whom you've asked forgiveness, you have been able to overcome your ego; or perhaps someone asks forgiveness of you. The other day we spoke of when you feel gratitude to someone who has acted so beautifully towards you, or when your heart goes out to someone in his suffering, or when you fall in love, or when you feel the power of the Divine Perfection in you working in human limitation.

For example, well, I always think of Christ captured by the Roman soldiers, experiencing exaltation. Christ experiencing exaltation on the cross, which is perhaps the greatest exaltation there is, experiencing the disintegration of the body.

When Al Hallaj was crucified, his friend Shibli said, "Had we not warned you not to welcome a friend?" And that friend was God. He was crucified for having revealed the secret of his lover. And then his friend Shibli asked him what is the highest degree of exaltation? And he said, "You will see it tomorrow." And the next day he was crucified. He had said, on the night before, "I have engaged myself from the wild seas I and my boat are shipwrecked. I shall die in the religion of the cross."

And then when he was on the cross, do you know what he said? Well, he quoted, of course, a verse of the Quran, and it said: "The one who dies may wish for this terrible test to be over soon, but the one who knows the meaning of death wishes for it to come slowly because it is the moment of truth!" So he was experiencing fana of the destruction of his body, and this was at the same time the exaltation of the spirit that is freed from all the travails and limitations of the earth.

There are other ways in which we can feel exalted when we see a reason behind things that we hadn't seen. Even the child, for example, with the, I don't know if you have that in America, we have that in France, little children had little pictures, a face of a man hidden somewhere in the tree, and then, "Do you see it?" "No, I don't see it." "Yes! Of course!" That is the moment of exaltation, when you're able to see it. And that is the exaltation, when you're able to see the hand of God working through all things. Or the cause behind the cause, or the essence of wisdom, or you touch upon the depth of your heart.

It is like a bell that you ring in which you are not used to touching. A lot of people just live at the surface of their being, and they only hear the bell outside, and never listen to the bell inside. Imagine the exaltation when you reach a point when you actually experience the way the rocks are exalted and the birds, and the whole of nature is exalted. That is because you are exalted; you are able to feel the exaltation of nature. Another feeling of exaltation is described by Abdul Qader Jilani when he says, "I am a bird from the heavens and I experience at present my visitation on the earth." There is a time when you can touch a particular phase of existence in which one feels raised above limitation. In fact, that is the essence of exaltation. It is when you feel that you are raised beyond limitation by having touched a certain plane of existence that was always there, but you hadn't really struck into the depth of your being.

Well, every form of intoxication passes. Everything is relative. So the girl gives up her dolls at some time, and as one progresses, the things that intoxicated one before don't intoxicate one any more, and there is something else that intoxicates one. One is always changing, going from one wine to another, everyone is intoxicated by some wine or another. Hafiz said, "Oh, if those pious ones of long robes listened to my verses and my song they will immediately begin to get up and dance." And then he went on to say: "Forgive me, O pious ones, for I am drunken just now." And the dervish says, "If I cannot dance, what am I to do?" The dance of the soul is participating in the ecstasy of creation. That is like the dance of Shiva, or the dance of some of the Sufis who are absolutely enraptured by the ecstasy of creation. And the beauty of it is, of course, that you are led away from where you are into the unknown. That is, you leave the place where you are, that's the meaning of ecstasy. Ecstasy means going away from the place where you are your state; it is being carried beyond your state. Murshid says, "Come to the mystic and sit with him when you are tired of all the other remedies that you have employed in vain. Come and take a glass of wine with him."

The mystic Wine is the inner absorption. And of course, the highest of all exaltations is the one expressed by Christ when he said, "Be perfect as your father is perfect." The actual realization of the divine perfection in one is the greatest exaltation there is; and that is of course the exaltation of the prophet, Insan al-Kemal, the perfect man, who experiences the divine perfection. That is the greatest thing that can happen.. As I said, you can be exalted by the beauty of the sunrise or the mountains or beautiful poetry or beautiful music or whatever. But imagine the exaltation of coming across a human being who incorporates the divine perfection, who can incorporate it in a way that nothing in nature could ever express. This is the reason why Jelal-ud-din Rumi said, when he saw Shams Tabriz, "The God whom I have been worshiping all my life has today appeared to me in the form of a man." It happens when the heart has been touched or tuned to a certain pitch or melted.

Shams-i-Tabriz says, (The sun-faced one's name was Shams Tabriz, Shams means "the sun.")
"When the sun-faced one has arisen, each atom of the two worlds arose.
When the light of his face sent its shadow, by the shadow various names I became.
The things, what were they? The pictures of the names.
The atoms, what were they? He, in reality.
The waves, what were they? They were in reality the sea."

That is the kind of vision of the one who is lost in ecstasy. He just sees Him. Him. There's nothing but Him. Baba Kule of Sheraz, that is the place where dervishes congregate at his tomb, and what he says, his poem is always, everything is Him. Everything, it is Him. Everything, it is the discovery of the Divine Beloved that gives the greatest exaltation. Because the greatest exaltation is love, and when one is able to see the One Beloved behind every beloved then one experiences the highest exaltation. What the exalted one does is read the mind of the universe. In fact, the expression of the ultimate exaltation is, of course, the condition of the prophet. That which expresses the prophet is that he reads the mind of the Universe.

You know what Hajji Sherif Zindani said: "This is death, where the divine impulse becomes stale in the isolation of the ego."

And life is where you have freed God from the prison to which we have subjected Him in your ego-self. There comes a time when one thinks that one has reached sobriety. For example, one had been intoxicated by some fancy or other. You know, the Buddhists speak about intoxication as Asavar, which means something that is alluring and takes you away from your realization. It is strange how these two, we have already seen how Sufism and Buddhism complete one another, and, of course, contrast with one another. We have shown how exaltation is a case where the emotions are extremely intensified, but in a very special direction which is neither joy nor peace. Whereas Buddhism tends towards Nirvana, which is a kind of sobriety, which is often thought of as sobriety; but one must understand that it is just like introducing indifference into action. Introducing sobriety into ecstasy. It cures you from one wine and makes you appreciate a more subtle wine.

There are some who like beer and there are some who like champagne. That subtler wine is the higher intoxication. You see, there are moments when you are intoxicated by the music of Brahms, and then there might come a moment of sobriety that you pass through, and you want to be very quiet and you can't listen to that music. You want to be very, very quiet, but it is not an emptiness; it is just a need for some other wine. Then you hear the music of plainsong, and you realize, Yes, now that is my wine; because now you need another kind of wine. So sobriety is like kemal. It is a passage from one state of intoxication to another. As Hazrat Inayat Khan says, "The highest intoxication is where there is no emotion," and that is the condition of Christ, of course, when he says, "It has been fulfilled."

Now, you know that you can make yourself high. You can do it. It is because you don't think you can do it that you can't do it. But if you know that you can do it, you can do it. You can just, it is something that you, it is just like switching on an electric light. You do something. You bring the physical world out of focus, but you have to be ready to disappear, you have to be ready to be dissolved, and you have to enjoy being dissolved and even want to be dissolved. Then also you have to really have a tremendous nostalgia. Actually, the human being is an expression of nostalgia. So it is not like you have to have nostalgia: you are nostalgia. But you have to be conscious of your nostalgia, of being nostalgia. Then, all of a sudden you can be absolutely focused on another level. Imagine that you reach a point where everything begins to live around you. It is like you're in an enchanted universe; and, as I say, you experience the exaltation of all things. Then you will begin to see the auras of all beings, and you will begin to see the eternal faces of all beings, and you begin to see meaning behind all things. You begin to hear the music of the spheres. And you watch your body walking and it makes you really laugh because you can't in any way see what relation there is between your body and you. It just seems to be such a very remote appendix of your being.

To understand the consciousness of the consciousness, that is, carried beyond the limits of the person, one has to understand the meaning of the Message, because one's own purpose only makes sense in terms of a greater purpose. There are some people who reach a point when they can't see what is gained by what they are doing, and if only they felt that they could do something that was really worthwhile doing, they would give their efforts for it. But just to do something that seems to gratify their needs, well, I think that a lot of people feel, "Well, my needs are not so great and I don't see why I should work so hard to just be able to eat and have clothes and so on. I don't have to have such beautiful clothes, and I don't have all that life has to offer." So one begins to discover a reality behind beyond one's own purpose, and this is what extends one's consciousness to the consciousness of the Masters, Saints and Prophets. So it is the consciousness of the Message that gives a sense of purpose, and, again, the sense of purpose will give one an exaltation. In fact, exaltation, this cosmic form of exaltation, comes when one realizes God Who is realizing His Oneness through one. He realizes Oneness through all things. But when the instrument through which He realizes His Oneness, then of course you experience exaltation. And that is the thing that the prophet is always pointing out. Because that is his condition. He is trying to make you share in his condition, which is the supreme condition of a being who has become the instrument through which God realizes His perfection. His Oneness and His Perfection. As we advance, the Unlimited Being working through us makes His own way and realizes His perfection. For in doing this He only realizes himself.

God knows Himself by His manifestation. Manifestation is a self of God, but a self which is limited, a self which makes Him know that He is perfect when He compares His own being with this limited self which we call nature. Therefore, the purpose of the whole creation is the realization that God Himself gains by discovering His own perfection through his manifestation.

Has God a consciousness of the whole creation beside the consciousness He has of separate being? This may be explained in this way: Every part of one's body is conscious of the pain that it has; it suffers through that pain, through pain from a sting, for example, but at the same time it is not that particular part only which is conscious of it. So if God is all and in all, then He does not only experience life through all forms and through all entities separately, but also collectively, as the pain of one organ is experienced by the whole body.

This is what I mean when I say that you are so much in connection with all beings that you experience the suffering and the joy of all beings. And that is when you are in tune with the consciousness of the Messenger, or the Prophet. What can be said is that in creation God manifests Himself. In suffering He Himself suffers; He Himself is puzzled in His creation. And one day He Himself realizes His perfection. God alone exists, no one else.

Hazrat Inayat Khan says in the the book, "In An Eastern Rose Garden", the following: "The one whom I have called God, whose personality I have recognized, and whose pleasure or displeasure I have sought, has been seeing His life through my eyes. Has been hearing through my ears. It was His breath that came through my breathing. His impulse, which I felt, and therefore I know that this body, which I had thought to be my own, is really the true temple of God. I did not realize that this body was the shrine of God." Not knowing that God experiences this life through man, one is seeking for Him somewhere else, in some person aloof and apart from the world, whereas all the time He is in oneself.