Another speaker we invited to speak to the discussion society, was the father of one of the society members, who was a professor at the London School of Oriental & African Studies. His talk focused on Sufism. Again, another finger pointing in the same direction. 

Sufism, mystical Islamic belief and practice in which Muslims seek to find the truth of divine love and knowledge through direct personal experience of God. It consists of a variety of mystical paths that are designed to ascertain the nature of humanity and of God and to facilitate the experience of the presence of divine love and wisdom in the world.

It was through this talk that I became interested in some of the Sufi authors, reading in particular the Rubyat of Omar Khayyam and a book which still accompanies me today: The Prophet by Khalil Gibran. The most common associaton is with the Sufi Dancers, who dance into ecstasy. There are many ways of expressing love and reaching that state of oneness.

Many years later, I also discovered the Music known as Qwaali. In particular, the singing of Nusrath Fateh Ali Khan, who I was fortunate to see perform live not long before his death. Listening to him and his Qwaal, is to be transported into the inner world. I didn't understand the words, but the feeling transcended that barrier effortlessly.

Again the same truths were being repeated in a different form: that love is the source of everything and that it can be found inside.

Read and enjoy the beautiful poetry of the Sufi's; listen to the music!

 Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself.
Love possesses not nor would it be possessed;
For love is sufficient unto love.
When you love you should not say, ‘God is in my heart, ‘but rather, ‘I am in the heart of God.’
And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course.
Love has no other desire but to fulfil itself.
        Speaking of Love, The Prophet by Khalil Gibran

 

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