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: Safa

2: Tat Tvam Asi

3: The Glance of the Seer

4: Divine Evidence

5: Openness

6: Movement (1)

7: Movement (2)

8: The Study of the Whole

9: The Mystery of Expression

10: Different Qualities of Mind

11: The Reproduction of the Mental Record

12: Impression

13: The Balance of Life

14: The Language of the Mind

15: The Influence of Experience

16: Intuition

17: Evidence of the Thought

18: The Activity of the Mind

19: Likes and Dislikes

20: Viprit Karnai

21: Reason Is Earth-born

22: The Word and the Idea

23: The Expression and the Idea

24: The Power of Words

25: The Re-echo of the Past

26: Interest in All Things

27: Vairagya

28: A Silent Music

29: Three Ways to Develop Insight

30: Tranquility

The Healing Papers

1,4: Insight

22: The Word and the Idea

The word is a body of the idea and the idea is the soul of the word. As the body represents the soul so the word represents the idea. The idea can only be expressed in the word, so the soul can only be seen in the body. And those who deny the existence of the soul must also deny the existence of the idea. They must say that only the word exists, without an idea, which in reality is impossible. Behind every word there is an idea veiled in one or a thousand veils, or clearly represented by the word. However, the word is a key to the idea, not the idea itself. It is not the word, which is in itself an idea, but only an expression of it. The ears hear the word, the mind perceives the idea. If the idea were not there, the word would not convey anything to the listener. If one said to a child, "Sarcasm is an abuse of the intellect," what will the innocent child understand by it? The word "sarcasm" will be known by the one who is capable of being sarcastic. This opens up another idea, that those who accuse others with authority of some fault must necessarily know the fault themselves. Man, however evolved, will now and then show childishness in expressing his opinion about another, prove thereby guilty of the same fault in some proportion. No one can tell another, "You told a lie," who did not tell a lie himself once at least in his life.

No doubt the idea is vaster than the word, as the soul is wider than the body. Every idea has its breadth, length, height, and depth. Therefore, as a world is hidden in a planet, so a world of idea is hidden in a word. Think, therefore, how interesting life must become for the one who can see behind every word that is spoken to him its length, breadth, height and depth. He is an engineer of the human mind. He then does not know only what is spoken to him, but he knows what is meant by it. By knowing words you do not know the language. What you know is the outside language; the inner language is known by knowing the language of ideas. So the language of ideas cannot be heard by the ears alone, the hearing of the heart must be open for it. The seer must understand from a word spoken to him what even the one who speaks does not know, for every human being thinks, speaks, and acts mechanically, subject to the condition of his body, mind and situation in life.

Therefore, as a physician finds out more about a complaint than the patient himself, so the mystic must comprehend the idea behind every word that is spoken to him. One might think with the continual growth of such a perception the life of a Sufi must become very much troubled, for when the average person would be seeing a yard's distance a Sufi may be seeing the distance of a mile. Yes, there is no doubt it could be troublesome if the mystic did not develop all around. The elephant's strength is required to carry the load of an elephant. It is not enough to become a seer alone, but what is needed is to develop that strength which takes all things easily, the power that endures all things, and the might which enables one to surmount all difficulties in life.