Genuine Mystical Experience


Pseudo-Mystical Experience


Murshid Samuel L. Lewis

known as Sufi Ahmed Murad Chisti in Islamic countries


known as Rev. He Kwang, Zen-Shi in Buddhist countries


 as Sam by Yoga Teachers




Genuine Mystical Experience Versus Pseudo-Mystical Experience

November 18, 1966

Beloved Ones of God:

In the short time allotted it is very difficult to capsule a whole life of actual experience in a short thesis. One has had laboratory experience and among the sciences, far from being considered wrong to present one’s direct efforts, sometimes it is demanded. But until recently the control of cultural and literary circles by scholars and pseudo-mystics has made it extremely difficult for a real Mystic to present anything.

True, one’s first teacher, Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan has had many of his works published; and at the end of this thesis there will be a bibliography list including books not so well known and some which should be much better known.

The appearance of Phillip Kapleau’s The Three Faces of Zen now make it possible for an American Mystic to be recognized, at least to have his books published. And during the course of these studies his spiritual teacher, or Roshi, visited this person (and nobody else) in San Francisco and one had his Eight Beliefs in Buddhism (privately printed, 1966), no principle of which contradicts, indeed they mostly affirm the teachings of the instructor Dr. Kelley, of the Extension Division, University of California, at San Francisco.

Unfortunately our whole American culture has accepted, without any to logical background, the work of scholars, mostly British or European for conclusions about whole ranges of mystical doctrines and by-passed such an excellent work as The Dervishes, by J. P. Brown, an American in foreign service. Indeed this process has taken such an extreme that the work on Al-Ghazzali, one of the most important of Sufi Mystics, by the late Prof. Popper of the University of California is virtually unknown.

 One must support here the contention of Prof. Titus Burckhart that one cannot really understand Sufism—which is our main thesis—without going through the Sufi disciplines. And Martin Lings of the British Museum, author of A Moslem Saint of the Twentieth Century, has been in contention with those fellow-British savants who have been followed and followed blindly in this land.

 Of course these men are not pseudo-mystics, but their intervention and acceptions in this field has made it most difficult for a true Mystic to get a hearing. And the presence of homo genus pseudo-spiritualis Californicus has caused popularity in this State and derision elsewhere.

The Mystic is one who has had the experience of Divinity-Infinity. Many people have experiences in Divinity without touching Infinity. Because of them we have the contemporary motto, “God is dead.” But many also have touched Infinity without Divinity. There has been a whole school of this centering around Dr. Bucke and his self-selected “Cosmic Consciousness.”

For one who has reached the real Infinity will find himself at one with Life, especially with his fellow-creatures. Our good vegetarian friends declare they feel at one with the animal world and so with life as a whole. But the recent history of Burma with its extreme delicacy toward animals and nonchalance toward mankind, and the more recent concern for the cow in India, indicate complete ignorance of spiritual mysticism. In the Gospel of St. Thomas the Lord said: Blessed be the Lion when the Man eateth the Lion and the Lion becomes a Man, and cursed be the Man when the Lion eateth the Man and the man becomes a Lion.”

A true Mystic has to face the ignominy of the whole society. Indeed there is a school among the Sufis called Malamatia (i.e. “blameworthy”) who are expected to become unpopular. And there is practically one note in common to all pseudo-mystics, that they seek popularity either by gaining social approval, or purposely seeking social disapproval to advertise themselves; the true Mystic is, as a rule, quite unconcerned with such reactions.

In 1956 one went to Japan during a period when particularly “scorned and rejected of man” and met his fellow in the real Zen, at the docks in Yokohama. During the whole time there these two persons, Okuda-san and Sam Lewis, never felt as two beings or “souls.” We seldom had to talk. And when we came to Mrs. Ruth Sasaki at and she asked Okuda-san, “How did you find me?” He pointed to the writer and said, “He find you.”

With all our studies in what we call “Zen” and “Buddhism” there is hardly any objective illustration of “Prajna,” that direct apprehension of Nature. And when man illustrates it, he is subject to accusation and criticism. Yet this is the main theme of the Venerable Hui Neng throughout “Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch.” And this person has been accepted by every Zen Master contacted and Okuda-san was his companion when the gates of the Imperial Palace Grounds were opened to receive as Guest of Honor an unknown, simple American with no particular title and no particular prowess in his own land.

The immediate venture of Okuda-san and the writer was to repair to the Engaku-ji Rinzai Zen Temple at Kamakura where we were surprised to find alive one of our own teachers, the late Roshi Furukawa, who after regaling us—and behaving very, very much unlike the “Zen Masters” of our fiction-writers—sent us to Roshi Sogen Asahina. Then happened one of those brilliant moments when Three Became One, and when later one asked the late Nyogen Senzaki, “When Sam Lewis met Sogen Asahina were there two, one or no people in the room?” Senzaki’s opinion does not jibe with those of our popular pseudo-mystics.

Asahina also differs very much from our accepted pseudo-mystics for he gave a talk on “The Identity of Christ and Buddha”—the same talk to be given by one’s present Roshi, Master Seo of Korea.

It is this identity-consciousness that marks the difference between the real Mystic and the pseudo-mystic. There are two kinds of pseudo-mystics and they agree in non-identification. The one type is usually Occidental. They use charm, social decor and self-attraction. They are clear neither in their thoughts or words and may or may not resort to scriptures. They invariably attack the religious status quo but support the social status quo.

The other type is usually an Oriental or somebody who acts as if he knows some kind of Oriental teaching. They generally propose an exclusive cult, set themselves up as masters or leaders and while using words derived from mystical schools, never clarify their terms. They are usually mysterious about their personage rather than about their teachings and appeal to man’s cupidity.

Pseudo-mystics abound particularly in California and India but they are found in all parts of the world. A new type has arisen in Japan which seems to be a compound of eclecticism and psychism. They often offer miracles and some mystics also offer miracles, but miracle-mongering is not essential to true mysticism. However else Mystics differ they would agree that in “God we live and move and have our being.”

Hazrat Inayat Khan has left us much literature under the general title of The Sufi Message of Inayat Khan and he sets forth that there is no such thing as an exclusive Mystic or a part-Mystic. It is like discussing a part-infinite in Mathematics.

Mystical teaching is by “transmission” and not by any internal or external dualistic method. When I left Sokei-an Sasaki, the Zen teacher, in 1931 I found I could explain the Upanishads but could not explain why I could do this. But there is only one Dharma and the differentiation between “Hinduism” and “Buddhism” is man-made. Buddha did not come to teach “Buddhism” and even now the various Masters in what we call “Buddhism” speak of “Dharma-transmission.”

There was a dramatic incident in the home of Rehana Tyabji who lives near Delhi Gate—between old and New Delhi. I had come to say good-bye. Her teacher who goes by the simple name of Pundit was talking on Srimati Bhagavad Gita in Hindi; without a pause he turned to me and said, “I have been explaining the Gita in Hindi, will you please continue the lesson in English.”

One began, “The Blessed Bhagavad Gita is the Flute-of-Krishna turned into poetry.” I then entered a state of Samadhi or cosmic consciousness and must have done well, for on conclusion the whole, male and female, Hindu and non-Hindu alike embraced me.

This was an illustration in life of an event reported of Sarkaracharya of old, that he had selected his cook to represent him at a great gathering.

It was like a quirk that I came into Sufis before into Buddhism, meeting Murshida Rabia Martin in November 1919, and Rev. M. T. Kirby in January 1920. Fortunately these two persons were friends. This led to my introducing Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Khan, the Sufi teacher of Murshida Martin, to Nyogen Senzaki, the Zen “brother” of Dr. Kirby in 1923. Both Kirby and Senzaki-san were disciples of Roshi Shaku Soyen who had introduced real Zen into this country at the Columbia Exposition in 1893.

This word “real” is a distinguishing factor between the Zen of Japan, and the Chan of much of Asia and what passes for “Zen” here. Fortunately our American universities, under the aegis of Dr. Richard Robinson of Wisconsin University are leading in the struggle to have real Zen teachings presented, if not accepted in this land. Nearly all of what passes for “Zen” socially has nothing to do with Dharma-transmission or true Buddhism.

And as time has passed, although basically a Sufi, I have inherited the original writings of Nyogen Senzaki and the picture of Shaku Soyen which he left when he departed from this land after his second visit of 1906.

These personal events show the unity of Mystics and of what the Sufis called “the arrived.” There is no such agreement or understanding among pseudo-mystics. In Samadhi there is no “self” and there may be Universal Light, and/or Love, and/or Life.

Once one has met a real Mystic it becomes easy to distinguish the true from the false. In June 1923, I was ushered into the presence of Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan. I had already met him in the spirit and it is noteworthy that he looked as I had seen him in “vision” and not like his pictures. However, in coming into the room there was no person, only a tremendous Light. I had recognized that Light, having read also the works of G. R. S. Meade on Gnosticism and “The Solar Body.” But it was not just Light; it was a tremendous feeling of a binding Love. This binding Love has proved lasting as some of the remarks below may substantiate.

One feels as if in the air, or at least not touching the ground, expanded and elevated. And this experience has been an occurrence over and over again. Even during this semester there were two such occasions.

Mrs. Annette Marx of Agoura, California had written that to meet Roshi Yasutani was to be illuminated. When I entered the room of my friend, Mrs. Fernandez, a veteran in real Zen, it did not even take a glance to provide an attunement. Even more so was this the case when Sidi Abusalem Al-Alawai came to this city, staying only one night.

There is a faculty of Direct Insight into the nature of things called “prajna” in Sanskrit and kashf by Sufis. I do not know whether anyone has noticed this before because writers are not Mystics, generally. Pra-jna may mean “beyond intellect” or para-jnana. It certainly operates that way.

 In looking for Hebraic parallels to kashf while one is not sure, the biblical concordances interpret the root chaz as meaning “vision” and many of the incidents given in the scriptures could, well apply to kashf.

When Sidi Abusalem Al-Alawi came to this city recently this Sufi was asked to bring credentials. He wore his robe and chanted forms of Zikr. This produced instant recognition on the part of each. But then he showed the Sidi and his entourage a picture of their own spiritual Sheikh and immediately asked about a personal friend. This friend (now deceased) had belonged to their very zawouia (convent). This was enough evidence to convince them and later they told their host that the writer was well qualified to be known as a Sufi.

Actually I have been initiated into the Shadhili Order which is a parent body to the Alawis, their own school. This initiation was based on visions immediately substantiated by fact.

The first such vision (other than a direct Zen experience) took place on May 30, 1921 when Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan appeared to me (on five different planes or levels) and said: “Fear not, I shall always be with you.” There followed a long period of pain and tribulation, but the consciousness of the Pir grew and grew until one entered into the next state, called fana-fi-Rassoul.

One experienced mystical union with Hazrat Inayat Khan in 1923 whereupon he gave certain instructions. These instructions were augmented in 1926 but unfortunately my spiritual colleagues, often from ignorance or envy, always from egotism refused to accept them. And the heralded “Sufi Order” has not made any particular mark in the world yet, excepting in a direction his own disciples have not yet accepted—Hazrat Inayat Khan did modernize and systematize the Sufi disciplines (he did not change them).

In March, 1925, the pain alluded to increased so much I thought death was at hand. I was sent into seclusion (khilvat) into what was then wilderness. I had with me copies of Hafiz. On the evening after the readings were completed Khwaja Khizr appeared and he appeared the next two evenings. He offered “poetry” or “music.” I chose poetry but it was a sort of anti-Hobson’s choice. The poetry has manifested in the forms submitted already to the teacher (Prof. Kelley). The music has taken one into realms not yet recognized in the West.

The other substantiation of the appearance of Khwaja Khizr is that the body at seventy (70) shows more exuberance, vitality and magnetism that at thirty (30). Yet I have seen much greater exuberance and vitality in the Grand Master (Pir-o-Murshid) of the Khalandar Order, known to us indirectly by a title in Rimski Korsakoff’s Scherazade Suite.

Considerable attention has been paid these days by Dr. Lessing and his fellow-anthropologists on the part “ritual” and “vision” play in religion. On March 21, by this same kashf I performed a ritual and it ended by perceiving in open daylight (twelve noon to be exact) the procession of the Messengers of God and their forming a circle to perform a cosmic dance, whereupon all merged into One. At that time I saw the Prophet, Mohammed, double, the other ones singly and took this as a sign to begin Qur’anic studies. I had already studied most other scriptures, at least superficially.

Then a robe (khirkah) was bestowed on me. That same robe was later bestowed in front of the Shrine of Moin-ed-din Chisti in Ajmir, India. In 1962 it was bestowed by the poet Amir Khusrau with appropriate words but before I could report it was immediately bestowed on me in physical form by my present Pir-o-Murshid, Sufi Barkat Ali of Salarwala in the Lyallpur District of West Pakistan.

The value of the robe (khirkah) is specially mentioned by the poet, Hafiz-i-Shirazi and I can assure you that its very wearing produces a marked change in one’s behavior pattern while one wears it. This takes on two forms, a “sober” and “drunken” state. Any type of criticism, opposition or contempt throws one into the “drunken” state (sukr) and vastly increases one’s immediate insight. Therefore one loves “one’s enemies” for a very strange reason. By oneself one cannot evoke that state (hal).

Imam Ghazzali taught that “Sufism consists of experiences and not premises.” Although he taught this over and over and over, and there is a vast amount of literature by and about him, one usually finds the translator or commentary treating Sufism as philosophy and not experience. This is even a greater distortion because western writers like Watts are in direct conflict with Al Ghazzali’s Tahafut Al-Falasifah, (Incoherence of the Philosophers) translated by Sabih Ahmad Kamali. And the situation is even more compounded because the Imam long preceded the anti-Aristotelian movements of the day and the persons involved refuse to examine this possibility.

Mysticism therefore consists of experiences and it leads to what some call the gradual emancipation of the soul. It certainly leads to “expansion of conscious” (Sufi term nasoul). This term has been seized by many western writers, one the anti-metaphysical super-metaphysicians of the Logical Positive and General Semantics School (where no phenomena occur or are discussed); the other the contemporary Psychedelic movement. There is no experience of Leary or any of his colleagues that a Mystic does not have to pass through and they are elementary indeed. Leary looks to Dr. Sydney Cohen who looks to Dr. Huston Smith of M. I. T. who has accepted the theses of this person.

Fana-fi-Sheikh. The experiences, as alluded to by Imam Al-Ghazzali were arranged by Hazrat Inayat Khan into the three grades or stages of fana-fi-Sheikh, fana-fi-Rassoul and fana-fi-Lillah, which is generally the accepted Sufi matrix.

Fana might well be the Arabic correlative of the biblical panah which means “turn the face to, respect.” Practically it means “effacement in,” for one dies to one self to live in the teacher (Sheikh), human ideal (Rassoul) and divinity (Allah) in turn. In its negative form it is called fana, in its positive form, tasawwuri.

But there is always a question in Sufis as to how far does the individual perform and how far he is subject to grace. The theory, as appears in Kashf-al-Mahjub of Al-Hujwiri and other books is that one’s station (makam) is the result of one’s effort, but one’s state (hal) is the result of Divine Grace.

In February 1930 I went into seclusion to commemorate the third anniversary of Hazrat Inayat Khan’s passing and he appeared to me in quite physical form and began communicating in what we might call a telepathic fashion, although so far all persons and groups pretending to be interested in telepathy have refused any reports.

In 1926 when I called on Hazrat Inayat Khan at the Beverly Hills Hotel to report on the events of 1925, he sent for me constantly and there were six interviews. One of these concerned the science of commentary. Indeed just before his death in February 1927 he sent a letter of praise and approval for the first efforts.

But after he appeared it seems that the major portion of these commentaries were nothing but direct mental transmissions from the teacher.

From that point on to 1945 one felt an increasing awareness of the Pir. This did not often produce any emotional effects, which are quite common. The records were in two forms, the commentaries and the diaries. Most of the diaries were destroyed in a fire on the night of December 31, 1949. These included a tremendous amount of auguries, which the public would call “prophecies.” Some of these foretellings were prophetic and these were in a book which was saved from the fire. They make Nostradamus and Blake look like amateurs, but they are nothing, absolutely nothing before the sayings of the great Saints, Christian and Islamic.

Fana-fi-Rassoul. There is a tradition that the Prophet Mohammed had lost a certain tooth. And there is one school of Sufis in North America where the initiation ceremony consists of knocking out that tooth.

I was living in semi-seclusion in the woods of South Carolina in 1946 and every day Hazrat Inayat Khan would appear. One day while brushing the teeth a tooth fell out, the very one missing in the Prophet’s mouth. Hazrat Inayat Khan appeared and laughed and laughed. The next day Rassoul Mohammed appeared.

During the following period both Jesus Christ and Mohammed appeared intermittently. I have “seen” Jesus in so many guises. True or false, he has never appeared to me looking like Galahad but in human form exactly as Khalil Gibran pictured Him, but seldom has He appeared in human form and the last times as the Spirit of the Universe.

Once one has contacted the Messengers of God one will never confuse Them. They are at the same time both the incarnation and humanization of the Spirit of the Universe, yet different from each other. Therefore the Arabs (or Mohammed) have given them special names. And before the Christians object, Jesus is known as Ruh-i-Allah, or “The Spirit of God.”

(Sufis do not argue one. In 1930 I met the late Duncan McDonald and we only differed on the Trinity and having so much in common we did not let thirty thousand agreements be disturbed by a single disagreement.)

In my own particular life the expressions have come out in Poetry and occasionally in Music and Dance. But if one gives Buddha any name it is “The Voice of the Silence.” And it is noteworthy that while a certain school of Soto Zen Buddhists refuses to recognize this it was recognized by the Roshi (spiritual teacher) of the Roshi of the present leader!

(Actually when I was at Sojiji at Tsurumi, between Yokohama and Tokyo, it was the only occasion where a Union took place with the Roshi on all planes from the material to the “Seventh Heaven.” This Roshi was the teacher of Dr. Kato who has been on the staffs of the University of California, several campuses.)

I do not wish to add personal history here. A great elevation is often accompanied by a great rejection. For after the appearance of these Messengers came “the Dark Night of the Soul.”

During this period Swami Ramdas of India appeared to me at work and predicted he would see me in fifty-two weeks. When I told people who had known him I received the usual derision but in exactly fifty-two weeks he came.

He stayed at the so-called Academy of Asian Studies then on Broadway. He debated the “experts” and the greatest farce was when he met the chief “pseudo-mystic” of the region. Everybody expected a great discussion. It was nothing but a series of knock-outs. The pseudo-mystic could not even ask an intellectual question.

I thus became also a disciple of Swami Ramdas. Previously I had been a chela of the formerly famous Paul Brunton who also later became a disciple of Papa Ramdas. He was then a follower of Ramana Maharshi. This teaching was not accepted by Americans. For there were no words, there was attunement in breath rather than in heart and it resulted in a full samadhic experience in six weeks. (No nonsense about “teachings of the silence”).

In 1962 at my revisit to Anandashram, home of Swami Ramdas in South India, I woke up three mornings to find myself not Sam Lewis but Ramdas and said, “It is time to go.” He said, “Yes, it is time to go.” I slithered away silently but he must have praised my station from remarks of another California disciple (Teddi Schleicher of Pasadena).

Anandashram literally means eden. The place was a veritable Shangri-la. But as our Cloud nine and metaphysical friends have placed Shangri-la elsewhere (Jesus Christ just can’t come when we think least … [reference to Mat 24:44—Ed]) we do not realize that the Kingdom of God not only can be on earth, but is on earth. It is our eyes and senses that are blind. There is no unsolvable problem.

In Sufic terms Akhlak Allah means to act as if in the Presence of God. I personally differ from those who say only certain passages in Qur’an indicate mysticism. The whole thing shows that the Prophet was in constant awareness of the Deity. So was Swami Ramakrishna just before our time.
Human mind or human will do not determine such affairs.

Sufis teach Allah as Zat (essence) and Sifat (qualities.) The Zat equals the Nirguna Brahma and the Hebraic Ain Soph. In the early stages disciples (mureeds or talibs) repeat Wazifas, phrases emphasizing the qualities of God. They roughly correspond to vocative Mantrams in India. It is only in tasawwuri Mohammed that all these qualities are combined, synthesized and conjoined. When one tries to walk in or with Mohammed’s footsteps he comes to the perfection of the qualities (Sifat) in action. Thus Mohammed has been pictured as the Perfect Man by Al-Jili and those who criticize this do not know what they are talking about. The analytical mind, the Pharisee can never understand mysticism.

Fana-fi-Lillah. Although this means “effacement in the Universal spirit, it must not be emphasized too much that always “in God we live and move and have our being.” Inayat Khan taught that the Murshid acts as a Cupid to bring the soul to God, and that God is the only teacher.)

Fana means effacement and baqa means subsistence. As nothingness increases so does everythingness. As we are crucified so are we resurrected. The experiences of the Sufi are not fundamentally different from those of the Christian Mystic. Many of the processes are the same. It seems that the Christian Mystics are more personal but this must not be regarded in any sense as a comment. As stated above even the Greatest Messengers preserve a certain personality and even “stars differ from stars in glory.”

The science of perfection is called Amaliat by Sufis. There is a specific practice called amal, (mentioned in A Sufi Message of Spiritual Liberty by Inayat Khan) which consists of removal of egoisms from the flesh and personality. But I have brought from the Orient the science or practices (Ryazat) in Irfan which correspond to amal as Resurrection does to Crucifixion, as Life does to Death.

Murakkabah is a science and art term “Concentration” in English. It has numerous stages corresponding to the skill and awareness of the disciple. As many planes and levels of existence there are, so many forms and variations of Murakkabah. (Hebrew rachab means “make large”—I do not know whether the terms are connected or not). But this practice leads in turn to two others which fundamentally belong to fana-fi-Lillah.

The Invocation of the Sufi Movement reads:

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.

This implies One Supreme God, and a Hierarchy of Beings who represent them. This Hierarchy has not only been stressed by Hazrat Inayat Khan; I first encountered it in that neglected J. P. Brown’s The Dervishes and have discussed it many times with Dr. Malawi of the Arab Information Bureau who is a descendent of Jelal-ud-din Rumi, founder of “The Whirling Dervishes.” I do not know any valid Sufi school that does not teach this.

Actually in this life I have met several representatives of the Hierarchy and differ here from some celebrated pseudo-mystics in that names, places and events can be supplied.

Mujahida is a practice which definitely comes from Mohammed himself, and is the subject of the “Greater Jihad.” In this you must picture the identity of your own Heart and the universe and keep it polished and cleaned in a manner analogous to telescope-mirror polishing. It is a constant process and while under this discipline one cannot relent a single instant.

 Mushahida also comes from Mohammed. The root is shahud which is also the root of the term “ashahdu” repeated in the call to prayer (Azan). In this, one acts as if he were not, that Allah was using all his vehicles. Many of the other aspects of it are the same as simpler practices but there is no nonsense now about “Allah is closer than the neck-vein.” In Mushahida you know it is so.

In Kashf-al-Mahjub Al-Hujwiri calls it “Contemplation” and “Fearful Contemplation.” I fail to find any difference from the Christian practices or outlooks here.

Thus in this life I have gone through all that appears in Edna St. Vincent Millay’s “Renascence” and Edward Carpenter’s “Toward Democracy.” These are non-devotional aspects of Cosmic Consciousness.

It must not be supposed that a Mystic, especially a Sufi, is particularly balanced. After being compelled to stay in Karachi among six hundred thousand (600,000) utterly displaced persons, one could never be the same, one did not want to be the same. There are so many who talk about Compassion but to take the pains, the tribulations, the sufferings of many onto one’s self, that is different and one changed his interest from Ornamental Horticulture to Food Problems.

One’s own conclusions are that Mohammed was Khatimal Mursaleen, not “the last of the Prophets” but the Seal of the Divine Messengers. Therefore one does not object, for example, to the Ahmadiyas who have been bringing education and morality to their people and operate, in a strange way, quite analogous to the Church of the Latter Day Saints in this country. Nor to the followers of Agha Khan who have retained much of the mystical outlook.

The writer has crossed Asia from one end to the other and been welcomed everywhere. He has even had the experience of being embraced by one of the spiritual leaders of the Vietnamese Buddhists. But then he has been embraced by and embraced spiritual leaders of all religions, including Franciscans and Rufus Moseley, top Protestant Mystic in America.

Some odd experiences have been presented and the greatest ones omitted not due to modesty or humility (the writer is somewhat lacking in them,) but for shortage of time and space.

In a sense this is only an introduction. The poems show another side, reflecting that the criticized philosopher, Cankara is the same as the uncivilized and uncriticisable Poet, the same person. God bless you.


The list below is very incomplete. The writer began studying Oriental Philosophy, at least in a literary form in 1916 beginning with Max Muller’s Entire Works, then on to Rhys Davids. His library was destroyed by fire on the night of December 31, 1949 but has been partially replenished since.

A. J. Arberry—The Discourses of Rumi

A. J. Arberry—Muslim Saints and Mystics, translation of Fariduddin Attar

J. P. Brown—The Dervishes

E. G. Browne—History of Persian Literature

E. G. Browne—A Year among the Persians

Paul Brunton—Passim

Sri Aurobindo—The Life Divine

Ibn Khaldun—Al-Muqaddammah, Yale Translation

Al-Hujwiri—Kashf-al-Mahjub, Nicholson

Hazrat Inayat Khan—Passim, published and unpublished

Unknown Sufi—Irfan, copy of a privately published work

Martin Lings—A Moslem Saint of the Twentieth Century

Max Muller—Passim

Seyyed Hossein Nasr—Three Muslim Sages

Qur’an—Many versions

Swami Ramdas—Passim

Edward Rehatsek—The Gulisant of Sa’di

Sarvepalli Radakrishna—Passim

Ruth Sasaki—Passim

Sokei An Sasaki—The Cat’s Yawn

Nyogen Senzaki—Passim, published and unpublished

H. A. Rose—Researches into the Tribes and Castes of Punjab and N. W. India Royal Asiatic Society 1896

Idries Shah—The Sufis and passim

Sir Abdullah Al-Surhawardi—The Sayings of Mohammad

Shams-i-Tabriz—The Whirling Ecstasy (Private copy, carbon submitted)

Fuard Udman, Ceylon—Ishq-u-Wal Qalb

Also Ryazat, esoteric instruction of Sufi Barkat Ali, Lyallpur District, West Pakistan