Toward the One, the Perfection of Love, Harmony and Beauty, the only Being
United with all the illuminated souls, who form the embodiment of the Master, the Spirit of Guidance
♥ THE MURSHID SAM DARGAH PROJECT: CONSTRUCTION TO BE COMPLETED THIS SUMMER, NEW PHOTOS HERE! CELEBRATION AND BLESSING RETREAT TO TAKE PLACE IN AUGUST. HOW YOU CAN HELP.
We continue to be inspired and energized by the life and legacy of Murshid Samuel L. Lewis (1896 - 1971), the Zen master and Sufi Murshid who founded the Ruhaniat and the Dances of Universal Peace. Though a San Franciscan, he was guided to be buried in the beautiful mountains of New Mexico; and visitors to his burial site continue to connect with his living presence there. In deep respect to Murshid SAM and the spiritual traditions which he represented we are currently building a shrine structure for pilgrimages and retreats, in Sufi terms a Dargah.
The summer of 2017 will see completion of the final phase of Dargah construction! The stone for the columns and floor, crafted in India, has arrived and is ready for installation. Over the past winter, intensive work has been done off-site to fabricate and carve the heavy timbers and corbels and to complete detailed design of the skylight and copper roof. Plans, equipment and highly skilled people all are lined up for the scheduled construction period.
A BLESSING RETREAT AND CELEBRATION will take place at Lama August 24-27.
All these developments and previous accomplishments have been made possible by a magnificent flow of donations and pledges (over $735,000 to date). As well, a number of kind and generous friends have extended interest-free 'bridge' loans to ensure that construction timelines remain intact, avoiding costly delays, while the rest of the required donations are being raised. Although the completed Dargah will be realized within a matter of months, we still need a further $150,000 in donations to cover all the costs and repay lenders. Click here to participate.About Murshid SAM — About the Murshid SAM Dargah Project — About Pir Shabda
♥ PILGRIMAGE TO INDIA WITH PIR SHABDA AND MURSHIDA LEILAH, February 2018: Flyer and information here
♥ POET TAMAM KAHN'S recent book has been named an award-winning finalist for the prestigious International Book Awards.Fatima's Touch: Poems and Stories of the Prophet's Daughter. From the author of Untold: A History of the Wives of Prophet Muhammad comes Fatima's story in narrative and poetry, rarely told in the English language, revealing here her loving connection with her father, Prophet Muhammad, and bringing forward this important woman, known and loved in the Islamic world. To order a copy at a reduced rate, or to read launch notes from the author, please click here.
♥ NEW ONLINE STUDY GROUPS STARTING THIS SPRING
ALSO OF INTEREST: New ONLINE SEMINAR, A Taste of Sufism with our friend Murshid Kiran of the Sufi Way begins Apr 9th. First session free if you pre-register.
♥ ZIRAAT (SPIRITUAL ECOLOGY) -- A new section in our web site!
One of the key concentrations of the Ruhaniat is called Ziraat. Its mission is to consciously recognize the natural world as our teacher and our responsibility. Our beautiful and inspiring new Ziraat page (link here) contains writings from SRI Ziraat leaders ("Gardeners") about Practices & Ceremony; Green Living & Social Activism Resources; The Spiritual Gift of Food (gift, not product); Ecospirituality, The Qur'an and Deep Ecology; and The Living Earth, Nature, and the More Than Human World. Huge gratitude to all involved!
♥ NEW BLOG ENTRY AND BIOGRAPHY PROJECT REPORT FROM MURSHID WALI ALI
With a timeline of several years in the future, a dedicated team is supporting Murshid Wali Ali in creating a complete biography of Murshid Samuel Lewis, his spiritual guide and teacher. Murshid SAM, born in the West, was recognized in the East as a representative of the ancient Sufi lineages, and was the beloved teacher of many seekers and initiates in the late 60's. His life, and living presence are honored all over the world. His influence can be felt today in the work of the Ruhaniat and the Dances of Universal Peace, and a comprehensive biography is eagerly awaited. Read a monthly blog entry and progress report -- a voyage of discovery and insight.
[From the Full-moon February entry:] "Our lineage of Sufism very much embraced these particular Zen Buddhist teachings from the outset of their manifestation in America. Hazrat Inayat Khan and Nyogen Senzaki immediately came into oneness together after their initial meeting. Nyogen Senzaki and Sokei-an were from the same school and were among the first Zen teachers in America, students in the lineage of Soyen Shaku who first presented Buddhism in 1893 at the World Fair in Chicago where Vivekananda first presented Hinduism.
"In researching the material now available, [I] became quite impressed with Sokei-an's realization and his clear way of presenting the teachings. It has inspired me to begin a year-long class on Monday nights at the Mentorgarten in San Francisco. It is a Dharma Night class in which we focus on Sokei-an Sasaki's teachings and legacy, and show its harmonization with the path of Sufism given us by Murshid Samuel Lewis."
"There is tremendous enrichment of being that continues to come from our work on Murshid Sam's biography. Our wish is to have this work continue to be a source of great benefit to all.
"Love and Blessings, Wali Ali"(About Murshid Wali Ali)
♥ NEW BOOK FROM POET TAMAM KAHN FROM RUHANIAT PRESS, OUR NEW IMPRINT.
Fatima's Touch: Poems and Stories of the Prophet's Daughter. From the author of Untold: A History of the Wives of Prophet Muhammad comes Fatima's story in narrative and poetry, rarely told in the English language, revealing here her loving connection with her father, Prophet Muhammad, and bringing forward this important woman, known and loved in the Islamic world. To order a copy at a reduced rate, or to read launch notes from the author, please click here.
♥ LISTEN ONLINE TO MUSIC OF THE SUFI CHOIRSEver since Murshid SAM asked composer Allaudin Mathieu to form a choir among his mureeds, a new kind of east-west choral musical blend has been enriching and inspiring the various Sufi communities. Now available online, the recorded music of The New Sufi Choir, for all to listen and enjoy. Also you may want to visit the original Sufi Choir (and the photo archive from the 70's here), the international Inayati Quartet and also the Humboldt Sufi Choir, among others.
♥ NEW UPDATE FROM THE HOPE PROJECT, INDIA
Richard Cuadra writes (Dec '16), "Dear Friends of the Hope Project, Happy holidays to you and your families I hope this winter finds all of you well. Please forward the Project newsletter to all who are interested (donation info included). Thank you for your support and consideration to hold the project in your hearts, on your breath, volunteering, and for your donations. Forty one years of service to the poor is an incredible body of work toward wellness and peace. Thousands of volunteers giving meaning and receiving love. With gratitude for all we do, Richard -- Hope Project"
♥ TAKE A FEW MINUTES, LISTEN TO THE VOICE AND WISDOM OF MURSHID SAM
Visit our growing collection of bite-sized audio excerpts from cassette recordings, of the unpredictable and profound teachings of Murshid Samuel L Lewis, Sufi Ahmed Chisti (1896-1971), original leader and founder of the Ruhaniat. Based on his lifetime of inclusive spiritual study and practice, these inspiring yet down-to-earth mini-lessons will challenge the mind and possibly make way for an opening of the heart.
♥ D.U.P IN COLOMBIA: BAJO LA LUZ DEL UNO (IN THE LIGHT OF THE ONE)
♥ From Colombia, from the Ecoaldea (Eco-village) Atlantida, comes this nicely done two-minute introductory video on the Dances of Universal Peace in South America, Bajo la Luz del Uno (In the Light of the One). Titles are in Spanish but the message is universal.
Learn more about Sufi outreach in Colombia that is uplifting, inspiring, and demonstrates how the Dances and Walks can be extended into global communities to affect social change, environmental justice and spiritual living. Visit darvesha.net/DancingPeaceandCoexistence.htm Also visit our SRI World-wide page for Latin America.
♥ WORLD-WIDE EVENTS UPCOMING:
You are invited to nourish your practice and connect with your Sufi community: new events for 2017 and beyond have been added to the Ruhaniat Calendar -- in California, Germany, New Mexico, Maui, North Carolina, Oregon, Florida, the Netherlands and more. See the wide spectrum of beautiful opportunities in the Ruhaniat Calendar. (Note: if you are saving the date for the next California Sufi Sesshin: this popular retreat will occur Feb 13th-20th 2018.)
♥ SOME ONLINE CLASSES FROM THE RUHANIAT
For individuals who wish to pursue the Sufi path of spiritual growth, the esoteric school of the Sufi Ruhaniat International, directed by Murshid Wali Ali Meyer, offers many online classes (some for all and some limited to initiated Mureeds) at little or no cost. Among these are recorded sessions of teachings from the Dharma traditions, Githa papers of Hazrat Pir-O-Murshid Inayat Khan with commentary by Murshid Samuel Lewis, and two series of classes to teach and enrich Wazifah practice — coordinated with the important book Physicians of the Heart. Also from the Esoteric School, the 2013 'God is Breath' series in high-quality video recordings, with the option of real-time study group participation.
Visit this link and scroll down to view a comprehensive listing. In addition, Pir Shabda Kahn offers an abundance of recorded teachng talks. For video recordings of numerous Sufi talks as well as Dances of Universal Peace, check out the SRI video channel. And check out the 'Locations' tab (above) to look for opportunities to experience Sufi teachings from this lineage in your local area.
♥ OUR SENIOR TEACHERS AND GUIDESKnown as murshids and murshidas, these dedicated women and men work with and support the Pir in overseeing the substantive inner work of our lineage. In addition, together with Pir Shabda and local SRI leaders, they offer many public Sufi events such as retreats and camps during the year, bringing the transmission of our lineage to seekers and devotees far and wide. Visit our Murshids' Circle page to view their bios and online schedules and much more.
♥ NOVEMBER 2015: NEW VIDEO REPORT ON THE DARGAH PROJECT
♥ WHY SUPPORT THE RUHANIAT with your financial generosity? Read this inspiring message from Sheikh Yaqin Sandleben, member of the Ruhaniat Board of Trustees.
"... I remembered a time when I was in India with Pir Shabda. He was offering bayat [Sufi initiation] to a native person of India at the Dargah of Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan. There were rays of the afternoon sun angling through the Dargah, birds were singing along with laughter and cries of children playing in the background. There was a touch of perfection in that moment. To see the Message that Pir-o-Murshid was guided to plant in the West come full circle, back to Mother India, with such potency -- this was to me a proof of our path, that daily wish we all carry for happiness and awakening of ourselves and all beings."