Murshid Samuel L. Lewis
(Sufi Ahmed Murad Chisti)
On Channeling I
Much is being said and done about channeling in the present time, and there is yet more to be experienced. “A people without vision perisheth,” and yet it is needless to say that caution must be exercised.
There must immediately be made a distinction in this time between the aspects of “channeling,” especially in the greater Sufi Community. It has been asked by the present recipient of these writings and others what differentiates the spiritual from the psychic, and that is a good direction from which to begin. There are three primary divisions between the states of psychic receptivity, out of which evolves trance channeling, speaking in tongues in the limited sense, misdirected fragments of truth such as unbalanced claims of “space brother” visits, and so on, and the state of spiritual receptivity, which evolves Tasawwuri, speaking from and to the heart, Divine Presence, Tawajjeh and Darshan (which are in this case nearly identical), and other states of hal and baqa. Given that part of the division may be simply prejudice—for God is All in all, and in the last analysis He speaks in every atom, proto-atom, and fragment of consciousness—the major distinguishing factors between the “psychic” and the “spiritual” is that of the intention towards unity. Often, but not exclusively, a psychic person will begin from an assumption of separateness, though as that one evolves this may be shed, and a spiritual person begins by assuming unity with the substance of God.
Before we go further we must emphasize that “channeling”—receiving wisdom, data, love, healing, states or whatever from a “higher” source—is something quite natural to the human being, and should not be looked upon with fear, aspersion, preconceived frameworks or judgmental closed-mindedness. The “psychic”—that which leads from the soul, in this case from the inner self image of man—may well lead and often does lead to the spiritual—the Divine action through one—if it is sufficiently pursued and the intention is kept pure. Thus one aspect of the division between them may be one of scope. (Yes, Jane Roberts is a case in point of the progression of psychic to nearly spiritual. Her diligence, mainly, coupled with her marvelous willingness not to be closed-minded, has evolved some wonderful stuff to be used at a certain level. As a record of the expansion of her consciousness, it is an excellent methodology for the expansion of at least the concepts of consciousness. But this receptivity is natural.
The second major difference between the two forms of this natural receptivity is surrender of ego to the Divine on the one hand, and the acquisitive direction of the egoic mind on the other. Often one may “surrender” to only a concept of God, and not the true Presence of the Divine, so you are dealing with two falsehoods here: the false concept of God and the false image of surrender. The quality needed for the spiritual “channeling” is very subtle and profound, and as such can often be found in the framework of a viable mystical order, where it most certainly must be “caught” and not “taught,” because this refinement can only be passed from breath to breath, heart to living heart. Thus you may find that prophecy comes from a mystical framework, and that psychic channeling is often singularly presented.
Because the third division between “psychic” and “spiritual” channeling is the life in it. Hundreds of “prophecies” and thousands of “psychic readings” were given out before, during, and after the time of Jesus Christ, and of these his living words alone survived. This may be partly due to the political and organizational re-structuring of the Church around 300 AD and later, or this re-structuring may have hindered those very teachings by allowing them to come under the scrutiny and selectivity of closed minds, but had there been no formal framework whatsoever his words would have survived, even as part of the compendium of the Essenes, the mystics of that time, and as a bright memory in the living heart of Mankind. (“…These rocks and stones would speak…,”)
Spiritual “channeling” may be viewed as attunement, psychic “channeling” as receptivity—with or without ego development, which may or may not lead to a “spiritual” awakening. There is a genuine difficulty with terms here because of prejudices and their resulting arbitrary divisions, but there should be no trouble in differentiating the actual experience of something received psychically and that received spiritually. The same [phenomena] may be there in both methods (as witnessed by this present “channel”)—a sense of [receiving from a] personality, of message, of “putting one’s self aside,” but the effect and attitude will both be different. One may want to differentiate between trance channeling which may be characterized by one ego stepping aside for another, and work such as that which allows these papers to be written, in other words conscious attunement; again it is a division between receptivity of a certain sort and attunement of a certain sort.
Yet in the end, as always, “by their fruits ye shall know them.” The living seeds of spiritual attunement may or may not lead to reception of phenomena, but they [the seeds] are living—in part because the phenomenon itself was not chosen, but the attunement foremost—and these living experiences bring forth greater life. The seeds of the psychic experience may or may not have a certain degree of life—as stated above, God is All in all—but the effect of ego-centered psychic phenomena is either divisive, limiting, lifeless, ego enhancing, or all of these. At irreducible minimum, if it works, use it; if it doesn’t, throw it out—but realize at the time what it is that you are dealing with—the Divine, Living Word or the mere reception and repetition of ego-structures.
On Channeling II
In Tasawwuri, the breath is used to transcend the ego. In trance channeling, it is used to remove the ego from focus on the physical body on the current of the etheric body to establish a void into which another etheric body may focus its own attunement or state. While the latter may seem on the surface to be more “spiritual” [due to concepts of surrender] in reality it is not, for in Tasawwuri the effort is conscious (one does not do Tasawwuri in trance) and the experience leaves behind, as it were, the effects of a new point of view, which always encourages the expansive aspect of human development. Frequently in trance channeling one returns through the same door as one left, and there is no such resulting change of point of view—unless, of course, as in the case of some, the information was arrived at purely and is applied.
Tuning of the breath into the states of Tasawwuri, spiritual receptivity, and even prophecy is possibly generally only through the effects of the transmission of baraka between teacher and student, and this process evolves into “channeling” only if it suits the purpose of the Divine Message. An increase of joy is the result, and not an increase of limits or limitations. One may open oneself to the natural human capabilities—psychic awareness—and receive information or statements which are “true” or “not true,” but when these psychic abilities are either overleapt directly—as in the case of prophecy, which is the Divine speaking to mankind—or expanded over time, as in the case of a “psychic” who applies the material received, Truth may be uncovered, which is the reality behind all fact. For it can be correct in viewing many “spiritual” states as expansions of “psychic” ones, and yet there are the fundamental differences noted above. [Intention, attunement, surrender.]
Active differentiation between the two consists of: 1. Observing results. 2. Observing the hal. 3. Being aware of the intention—is it for Divine purposes in the main, or less that these? 4. Attachment or non-attachment to phenomena—and this means both seeking the phenomena for its own sake and remaining in the state where that phenomena is manifested in order to enhance the ego, and so avoiding learning or expansion.
It is this attachment to phenomena which is one of the most productive of grief in the unfolding of the human soul/spirit nature. In his time Hazrat Inayat Khan tried with some success to steer his disciples away from this seeking of phenomena for its own sake (with the result, perhaps, that many sought outward acclaim instead!), and this is a caution which holds more true than ever in this time and age. The physical world itself is full of phenomena, is phenomena, likewise the other, angelic realms; there is indeed no end to phenomena! Viewed form a certain point, we are phenomena—and yet seeking for the creations of God rather than God himself becomes, as it were, a rather roomy maze from which there is in the end no way out but through ego-surrender to the Divine Will and the intention to do the work of the Message whether it entails phenomenal experiences or not.
Inayat Khan found the minds of the foolish persons most difficult to work with, for the foolish person may have the tenacity of a hero, and yet be unwilling to surrender. Yes, it is true that God clothes Himself with phenomena—as said before, He reveals Himself only to those most intimate with him—and not remembering this fact, that one must become the slave of the Diving Will in order to open the doorway to the Divine state—has led many astray. It is true that on the spiritual path the psychic experiences must be me crossed through, with or without various attendant phenomena, and that the psychic experiences can be and often are the outward evidences of movement into a spiritual direction, but the best attitude to take is always that of Toward the One.
(A brief mention will be made here about psychology, though it is intended to be taken up in another paper later. The soul—psyche—is one of the bodies of man, but it is not the Divine core of man. In particular when the soul is reflected through mind (which indeed is what “psychology” is) one is further removed from that Divine. This is not to condemn psychology, or psychological training in any aspect save that of undifferentiation: the psychological cannot and will never be the spiritual—though it may lead to it (as can the psychic) and psychological processing may or may not clear away the debris of the nufs sufficiently for Divine Intention to shine through. But spiritual attunement and psychological processing are entirely different subjects. Something most precious is lost when the heart and breath of Man turn inward to the limited concerns of nufs—rearranging the bars of the prison, as it were --rather than to the Inner Will of God, which is Man’s birthright, [which would help one] to escape even the concept of “prison” entirely.)
On Channeling III
Dreams, visions, ideas, ideals
If one is to regard channeling as imparting of knowledge or facts or wisdom to the human from a “higher” source, one must first realize that height and depth are relative terms which we have learned to use while in focus on the Earth Plane. The angels have no words for these things, the closest equivalents being aspects of “Godward”; “higher” meaning something like “God seen through the veils of God” and “deeper” something like “touching God directly.” In both cases God is seen, but in the first case there is a sense of separation; in the second case there is a greater intimation of unity. This above, of course, totally ignores the fact that angels use no words at all, but are Shemayim, vibrations. So this is another way to illuminate the distinction between the “psychic” as it is generally understood (within the greater Sufi community at least; I do not wish to address those who change the meanings of the words to suit themselves), in other words, the psychic faculty sees God though veils (a wonderful collection of them, too!) and the spirit of man sees God directly.
In dreams one sees through veils, and yet often the impetus for a transformative dream comes from both the spirit/self of Man and the inner Heart of God, and thus Man’s pathway can be more fully illuminated. In dreams, one works out one’s intentions in the earth plane, and this may or may not involve the use of any faculty—the psychic, spiritual, non-temporal or prophetic, intuitive God-sense or disunitive ego sense, or whatever. Thus in any dream “channeling” may occur, whether it be a premonition of disaster or of healing, or the mind’s own phantasms played on its own surface, or real communion with a prophet. We can let ourselves be bewildered by this complexity [of states within the dream] or we can remember that, in a sense, dreams can be seen as the interference patterns between these two directions, “higher” and “deeper,” God seen through veils and not. This allows dreams to be interpreted from many assumptions, from the truly mundane, as some of the more degenerate “fortune telling,” through the mainly symbolic, which is how most dream books are written, through the genuinely spiritual where the revelations are so clear they need no interpretation. But without an understanding of—or a spiritual ability to overleap—these complexities, the various attempts at ESP, receiving target pictures from sender to receiver and the like, is doomed to only a partial and relatively poor degree of success. Any methodology which compartmentalizes, divides, or limits the being of Man by concepts or a series of concepts is doomed in the end to limited success, for the whole is always greater than the sum of its parts. This must be remembered, and in the upcoming age it might even be realized.
And once this is remembered and realized, the true nature of Zikr may also be realized.
Using the earlier definitions of higher and deeper, a vision or waking dream may be said to be a reverberation from the depth (inner) to the height (outer) and back into man’s perception. The “original” source may come from God’s intention or Man’s intention, though of course it is all the Divine, and the effect of the vision may be instructive or transformative. For the purposes of our discussion, visions may be considered a form of channeling, especially when the contents of the vision lead man beyond his own limits into a broader sense of self.
There are those who receive no visions; they either do not emphasize this particular clairvoyant faculty, or deny it, or simply don’t need it for their development. For those who do see visions, the earlier distinction—that if the vision-form has light behind it, it is a vision, and if it is not so backlit it may be regarded as a dream—applies, and this distinction can now be explained as different manifestations of the different directions in which consciousness (with its attendant patterns of wisdom or knowledge or facts) is traveling, i.e., reaching up through the veils or within to the depths where God may be seen directly. As noted above, it is the interaction of these currents which create the interference patterns, as it were, which may be called dreams or visions.
Ideas, of course, may be channeled, but more commonly they represent the inner consensus of the minds of Man which then can become a driving force or pattern towards manifestation. This differentiates them from concepts, which are the frozen picture- images by which the human ego attempts to manage the unbounded and formless to its own purposes—in other words, veils. Ideas may act as the central points around which much energy, both of the Earth and higher planes, may be gathered and focused, and as such they can be said to be the perceptible forms of the Will of God. In each time and place, or in multiple time/places, Man chooses certain patterns or lessons to work out, and is given every method possible for him to understand these patterns, including channeling.
Ideals may be said to be concepts raised to the point of becoming directive and formative forces in one’s life, but it is because they are concepts—pictures of God rather than the direct ilm, or inner perception of God—that Inayat Khan has instructed, “Shatter your ideals on the rock of Truth.” Ideals, like concepts, are limits—but as the nature of Man is at base limitation, limits are needed up to the point where Man enters baqa and becomes a manifestation of the unlimited God, transcending his limited nature. But even in this transcendence the limited nature of Man must be respected, for in the deepest sense these limits are Man’s perfection.
Dreams, then, instruct, visions transform, ideas give man focus and ideals direction, and thus the inner dimensions of Man are manifested into view. None are more or less “spiritual” than the other, for all lead to God in time, and all are representations of the natural flow of the ilm within the pluriverse that is the Mind of God.
On Channeling IV
Guidelines for the New Age
In a sense, Mankind is going over old ground at this time, but with a renewed perspective which offers incredible scope for further development. That the Zikr (La illaha ila ‘llah hu) has been spoken aloud by many and realized by some in this age—and those who have realized have been people of the generality—is the most significant single factor in the qualities of this “New Age.” This realization of un-separateness with God, to whatever varied degree, is the keynote in this time.
“Channeling” will soon become so common as to appear normal, at least to the generality and more slowly to many “experts.” But the attributes which apply for mental health—balance, coherence, unity with one’s whole self and acknowledgment of shadows, both “bright” and “dark,” a capacity for love, for compassion, and control of ego—still apply and perhaps even more so in this time. Illness may imbalance one into the semblance of intuitive, psychic, or spiritual awareness, and rather than demonstrate the unreality of such states, it argues for the basic prevalence of them. We have been so long unconscious of more than we know, it has become time to know it.
Intuition and inspiration both come from God, hence they are spiritual; channeling entities, as mentioned before, is a psychic process. And yet it is raised towards the spiritual when it has a real effect for the growth of Man. But all—especially those who surrender themselves to psychic phantasms or apparent entities in order that these may do the “channel’s” inner or outer work for them—must recall that the human will must be kept paramount when dealing with the psychic, and completely attuned when dealing with the spiritual. There is some confusion between “will” and nufs—”Let They will be mine,” all too often means, “Let your Ego be mine, and my ego be Yours.” But “will” in the sense that we are using it here is the divine center of Man, the Intelligent Force, as it were, which acts upon all universes, both inner and outer. So it may be better said, “As Thy will is mine, as my will is Thine.” And yet the surrender of responsibility and the surrender—or tuning—of will are not at all the same. In the one, one is spineless, i.e., one has stepped aside from one’s natural power, the harmony of the chakras. But when tuned to the Divine Note, one realizes and acts from unity.
Peace is power; phenomena is not power. Perfect attunement is desirable, not
a babble of spirits. Psychic channeling will become of greater and greater
reality in this time; we cannot escape it, nor should we wish to. But in time
it will lead beyond itself into a kind of unconcerned, “every day”
realization which will have at its base an acknowledgment of the profound
limitlessness of the Human reality. It may well be that when everyone starts
channeling Moses, for instance, then
phenomena of Moses will be set aside for the sake of the being; this is to be hoped, and will come about only through the grace of God. And yet there is much jubilation here on the inner planes, because so much has been accomplished and now so much more may be accomplished, and the
Renewal of mankind becomes more and more imminent with each newly perfected breath.
Use and Abuse of the Body; Breath-Currents, Possession, Solar and Lunar Receptivity.
The human body, for all the “bad press” it has received, is a delicate instrument—or, more correctly, a series of interlinking vibrations from gross to fine. The analogy of ice, water and water vapor to aspects of the human form is good, because even as physical phenomena are quantized—consist of separate “packets” or “points” of energy, each discrete and whole, so also are the human bodies derived from this same discrete nature of phenomena. This should perhaps have been a clue as to the nature of the universe—that there are “spaces” between particles and events—because infinity is found between any 2 points. In other words, God is the continuum “between” and also comprising all quanta of energy, substance, mind or consciousness. These quanta are the rhythms of maya; depending upon which series we are attuned to, we have this or that or the other experience, hence reality.
In channeling, whether it be of a “spiritual” or a “psychic” nature, the rhythms of the body are changed profoundly and this may or may not have physical manifestations. As noted above, illness can lead to the de-tuning of the body in this sense, and it is both chance and the natural predisposition of the joint mind/body interaction that tends to have illness manifest as psychic phenomena. Because of the inherent power in spiritual states, and because the intention of God and Man must congrue, it is rare to see illness and spiritual realization together (unless this has been chosen)—certainly it is rare indeed for illness to lead to spiritual channeling, though perhaps it will lead to other phenomenal manifestations. (It would not be necessary to include near-death and return-from-death experiences here, certainly; that is another process entirely.) In other words, illness may lead to spiritual awakening or realization, but rarely does illness lead to manifestations of spiritual states. I have said “rarely,” not, “never”; the patterns of Karma and lessons chosen differ from person to person and from Age to Age. The power of the spiritual state tends either to heal the body or to shut down the body’s finer receptors, as a protection. Mind- altering drugs tend to shut down the finer receptors also, but more permanently in one sense than even an “unripe” realization, though the Keynote of God, given the proper agreement of Man, can heal and re-tune anything or anyone. But illness frequently manifests as psychic disorders, and psychic disorders frequently manifest as illness in part because both are of a “lower”—in this case of a more chaotic, less refined, and less energetic—vibration.
That the body is tuned though breath is another reason for the differences between “psychic” and “spiritual” manifestations; the attunement of breath to the spiritual can generally be given only from realization to realization—one state of receptivity to another, be it teacher (whether formal or not) or student. Needless to say, this current of breath need not involve the movement of air molecules from lung to lung, so that spiritual realization may be passed between subtle bodies whether physically distant or divided by death, else the light truly would be gone from the Human race, and this Earth-plane would be annihilated, not from any divine rage, but from Divine grief and resultant chaos. But it is by far the easiest and the most beneficial to receive the first attunement from a living teacher, for there is a particular quality of livingness—God—passed in this manner which can be accomplished in no other way.
And yet the one may receive a “spiritual” enlightenment through a “psychically”-realized teacher. Again, this is rare, and depends on Grace and the demands of the Message, but happens often enough to be worthy of note.
Both “spiritual” and “psychic” receptivity are of a Kemali state of breath, hence the great potential for unbalance. Psychic unbalance may manifest as delusions, possession, unique world-notions (psychosis) or what have you, and spiritual unbalance may manifest as effects on the physical body (such as seizures), madzubiat in its various forms, delusions on a grander scale (though these, as other “calamities,” can be utilized for the manifestations of the Divine Intention; not the human will or desires necessarily, but the Divine Intention), and perhaps some mental fixations. Generally speaking, if there is unbalance it manifests in the mental and etheric bodies first, then in either the physical or the psychic, at any of which it may be seen and corrected. This is Mankind’s protection.
The unshielded glance of a spiritually realized person may destroy, not through rage, but because of the sheer inexorability and power of the Divine Will. The body, at least, tends to protect itself through, for instance, illness itself.
Thus this whole process of receptivity to channeling of whichever sort must be approached with conscious care. It was for this reason that such things were forbidden to the generality and even the elect by Mosaic law ([prohibiting against] soothsayers, magicians and the like); to receive a “psychic” state from an unbalanced person is worse than useless, and can lead to real damage.
It is, in fact, imbalances in health and breath which lead to possession, which is a kind of skewing of focus from one chosen “rhythm” of quanta to another—as though one were to distort one magnetic field with another more powerful one. And yet the power of a “possessive” entity is indeed the “victim’s” own, surrendered by the possessed in a moment of imbalance of ill-advised foolishness. (As stated before, human will, in regards to channeling of psychic or spiritual matters, is paramount, but once it has been surrendered, it cannot be so easily taken up again.) For the purposes of this discussion, I am differentiating from the “possessions” described by Edith Fiore, which are “merely” harmonious resonances between etheric bodies and the subsequent “static” or “harmonies” which occur; in this case intention is there to some small degree—some harmonies are achieved by “accident” but rarely is there malice or “conscious” intention of harm by the entities or entity-fragments. As the collective soul and spirit of Mankind change pitch to the vibrations of the coming Age, more and more of the type of “possession” described by Edith Fiore will be seen, and must be at least noticed, if not attended to, though as consciousness rises, such “possessions” will be taken or not taken on with greater and greater awareness; a “hitchhikingᾀ? etheric pattern—which is what most of these “possessive” entities are, living thought-forms—will be treated more like an unexpected guest or even as a friend, and more desirable effects will be created.
But generally—generally—as conscious awareness expands with the awareness of the age, “evil”—which may be defined as unconsciousness, unawareness, unbalance and/or unacknowledged pain—will be eradicated as easily as the calyx falls away from the bud. Yes, there will be changes, and some of them will seem “catastrophic” to those whose egos are identified with that which must fall away, or to those who wish the excitement of world-destruction for whatever reason—though this is not said in order to excuse or neglect the real human suffering resulting. But when the Note is change, another note cannot be in the same place. When the Age has changed, what is not in consonance with it will fall away.
On Channeling V
Solar and Lunar breath-currents; prophecy
It should be clear by now to those on the spiritual path and perhaps others that unbalance of breath leads to various effects. Certainly it is the breath which is the conduit through which material of whatever sort is translated from one plane or state of being to another [as in channeling]. Hence the talib must be in control of breath before undertaking any kind of channeling work, or the work itself with skew the breath-patterns, much to the seeker’s detriment.
There are two main effects from the two main directions of breath—inhalation and exhalation. For the purposes of this discussion we will call the emphasized exhalation the lunar current, and emphasized inhalation the solar. Both have their uses and effects, whether beneficial or not, even aside from being used as methods of channeling; certainly exclusive use of either may lead to unbalance.
Over-emphasis of the exhalation leads to a decentered type of action, bringing much that is within to the surface; hence it can be used judiciously to call forth various hidden attributes, among which can be the capacity of channeling itself, particularly the psychic modes. But if the exhalation—or inhalation—are consistently emphasized, then the cyclic nature of the breath is lost, and this leads to Kemalic destruction. This is something of what is happening to the various television evangelists—the breath has moved the center more and more to the surface, so to speak, such that in time there is no center, only surface, and unbalanced obsessions—whether “psychological” or “actual”—result from the void felt within from the moving of the center to the surface. Exhaustion, enervation, and lack of center are all aspects of this overemphasis of exhalation.
An emphasis on exhalation may quiet the mind, still the ego to some extent, make one receptive, change one’s rhythm, change one’s use of energy, so this is not to condemn the action, only its unbalanced use. But it is the very process of unbalancing itself—that the center may be sought in the direction that one is already heading, instead of reversing direction back to the real center—which is one of the best arguments for having a living teacher on the path: it provides a norm from which a center may be discovered [or re-discovered].
The solar current—again, for the purposes of this discussion, I mean an emphasis on the inhalation—has effects of its own. At a low level, it is the breath of the unbalanced magician—”I will put you under my umbrella of power.” This is pure self- aggrandizement with no recognition of the Being of God. (Even Rassoul Jesus said, “Call me not good.”) The sorrow of this is that very real traditions, and even “real” practitioners of arts such as Wicca may be thus abased by ego. Again, emphasis on inhalation itself is not necessarily adverse, as it leads to increased energy, perception, love-capacity, both for oneself and others, increased memory retention, optimism, light and vigor. Yet, as has been seen, the unbalanced use can lead to ego-enhancement, delusions of grandeur (which delusions, interestingly, find an “echo” in a certain stage in the process of unbalanced exhalations, too), inflexibility, imperception, the imposition of one’s will on another, and, perhaps, a permanent state of worry.
It is the conscious or unconscious balancing of these currents, coupled most often with an awareness of the possibility of Divine communication, which lead to prophecy, both in terms of psychic impressions (accurate perceptions of the personality, path, directions and possible outcome of a person’s desires and decisions), as well as receptivity to the Divine Word. Above it has been noted that psychic or even spiritual awareness may cause illness or stem from illness; this is due to the mis-alignment of breath to the Divine rhythm—which mis-alignment is inevitable to some extent in this limited sphere, but which can be greatly ameliorated by conscious use of the breath and, perhaps, a knowing surrender to the Divine. Mohammed and Jesus were both able to speak the living words of Divine prophecy because their breaths were refined, living, and balanced. (“Take up your cross—the balanced breath, and follow me.” The path of Jesus was never meant to be burdensome or unbalanced, but it has been made so by those who will not abide others’ happiness.)
Prophecy is differentiated from mere prediction in part by the amount of Life within it. To surrender to the Living Word must in its own way demand a surrender of one’s life. Certainly, it demands a free surrender—a willed and willing, surrendered attunement—to the Divine Breath.
The subject of Prophecy itself will be taken up in another paper at greater length. But as a final word on the subject of channeling, a couple of caveats: Although the psychic and psychological aspects of Man must be differentiated from the spiritual, they should not be rejected out of hand from prejudice. It is not so much the “psychism” of Inayat Khan’s day that was objected to, or the attachment to the phenomena, as it was the unbalance toward the psychic, and the attachment to same, that were so damaging. Each thing must have its proper place and time, but prejudice closes the doors of the mind and makes no further learning possible, while unbalance obviously has its own dangers, which may be as great or greater than any sojourn into less than “spiritual” directions. Secondly, one must never lose one’s common sense—the wisdom of the world—or one’s own intuition, for the former has always been meant as an elementary protection, and the latter is the direct awareness of the Living God. Yes, mistakes may be made with both of these, but they are generally the errors of inexpertise. But to act without common sense is a fool’s way, and unless this fool be acting from Akhlak-i-Allah (baqa), disaster follows, and to turn aside from the direction of the Divine voice within leads, as always, to the estrangement of self and Self, and hence innumerable woes.
The Kingdom of heaven is sought within, never without, though the Grace if God may be manifest in all creatures, all times, and all conditions.
May the Blessing of Peace go with you all,
Sufi Ahmed Murad Chisti
One who has been given Grace by God.
On the Practice of Tasawwuri
If one takes the practice of Tasawwuri into one’s daily life as a conscious practice, various factors must be considered before such practice is undertaken. Primarily there should be an accommodation made, not only in the heart and breath of the student, but into the situation of life in which the student finds himself placed. The physical being must be tuned through breath and the Walks; the mental akasha must be cleared of all save the purpose at hand, and there must be physical scope enough to ensure that this practice may be carried out in an enhanced manner.
What is Tasawwuri? It is the union in harmony of soul to soul, vibration to vibration. It is not simply practicing the presence of the teacher (alive or dead) even though it be to the point of being that teacher’s amanuenses if that teacher has passed. Rather it is the utter attunement of will to will through heartfelt intention, the mingling of breath to breath until one color—one transparency—be achieved. That this may be done with a teacher who has passed is not surprising, because the Divine All-Pervading Breath is the foundation of all that has been created, and remains so.
Now, I’m going to let you in on a little secret: in time the practice of Tasawwuri will become commonplace and necessary to even the ordinary man because the expansion of the akasha of the race will have become great enough to permit these easy harmonies between loving soul and loving soul. In other words, seeing from the point of view of another will not only become likely and beneficial, it will become vitally necessary and fully natural. This is the day of Gayamat of which many have spoken, and only by this and in aspects of this [attunement] will the race survive.
The mistaken delusion of an entropic universe will give way to the understanding that energy is, for our purposes, infinite in substantive reality and extent. It will be with this new understanding that fears will ease, barriers to Divine realization be broken down, and that Mankind will be able to take the next step into higher Makam.
The unity of wills—not ever uniformity, but unity—represented and actualized in the practice of consciously embarked upon Tasawwuri will be and is the first step in this change of Makam. The links in the chain of the Silsila should not be viewed as straight and rigid lines but as the linked hands of dancers in spiral, of hearts which attune to any breath, whatever be their time/space. For it is true, and must never be forgotten, that for two hearts that are linked, time and space mean nothing, and Death itself is but a filmy veil. Because, indeed, the intention of the practices of Tasawwuri is unity with the Divine Being, who is Omnipresent, All-Pervading, Eternal.
Sufi Ahmed Murad Chisti
One who has been given Grace by God.
Telepathy, as Hazrat Inayat Khan instructs, is the natural tuning of mind to mind through love, familiarity, and the breath. In the Master soul this familiarity approaches the pan-specific: he is in all and with all, and knows it, and so is able to find a point of intersection with any soul. As the American poet Walt Whitman put it: “In all men I see myself.”
Those who desire wonder-working for its own sake (or for their own sakes) will of course always be ultimately disappointed, for the path in Divine Service may involve wonder-working if that is what is needed, but does to stop there. But the path of wonder- working always stops in the perpetual bewilderment of a dead-end maze.
The Sufi clears his desires from all but serving the One in whatever capacity or capacities he may possess, though this of course does not mean that he surrenders all desires. Even the desire to be desireless is a desire, and could be one of the most dangerous desires of all to some in this present age.
Some little has been said of the notion of using telepathy in spaceflight, or in espionage or other methods of harm; this has mostly been in fiction, though it has been seriously contemplated by certain governments. The search for harmful uses of telepathy will not bear fruit. And yet the search for telepathy or telepathic means is itself a step forward in the consciousness of the Age and will lead of itself to newer ways of acting and thinking. One cannot hope to open the door to a new universe and expect that nothing from that universe will come through.
Telepathy itself, as is stated, is attunement; there are always natural practitioners of the art, some who have escaped society’s preconditioning and others who have simply ignored it. But those who seek to put it to coercive purposes will not succeed, immediately or eventually, because they refuse to believe or see these basic requirements of breath, attunement and love. War is none of these, coercion is none of these, the lust for power over others is none of these. Those who, in their arrogance and delusion, who see no other purposes, motivation or outcome but these—war, coercion or power—will continually find the phenomenon slip away from them, and they may ultimately give up in despair, not quite noticing that the search itself has changed them irrevocably.
I do not and never have advocated abuse of human beings by human beings. But God in His Compassion turns even evil actions to good, harmful actions to beneficence, and as long as Man insists that he will be uppermost he will always learn the hard way. But the attunement to the Divine Will implied here has nothing to do with ego-destruction, but rather with realizing that we are of the same substance, He and I, that “Man is Divine limitation and God is human perfection.”
Sufi Ahmed Murad Chisti
One who has been given Grace by God.