Opinion Op Ed 30 Jan 2018 Mystic Mantra: The m ...
Moin Qazi is a well-known banker, author and Islamic researcher. He can be reached at moinqazi123@gmail.com

Mystic Mantra: The mystics in white

Published Jan 30, 2018, 12:39 am IST
Updated Jan 30, 2018, 12:39 am IST
Sufism is the lodestar for all mystical schools.
Sufism (Representational image)
 Sufism (Representational image)

What a relief to be empty! Then God can live your life
—Rumi
In the chaos that prevails around us, there is a growing feeling of desolation and misery. The pace of modern times has upset the rhythm of life and the music is slowly ebbing out. Living in a harsh world we have developed cynicism and hatred. Our inner life is marked by wrestling of competing forces. Love and jealousy, pleasure and pain, hope and fear, life and death, ideal and reality, dream and truth; they are all in a state of eternal conflict. The most authentic hope comes from mystics whose philosophy combines the virtuous message of formal religion with the transcendental values of love and harmony.

Sufism is the lodestar for all mystical schools. it enables an individual to purge his mind of all toxic emotions and helps restore balance and harmony. It is both therapeutic and transcendent and the most gentler and colorful form of mysticism. Unlike many cults, their lily white robed members are never phoney or self-deluded or cynical, a touchstone with which to judge the false. Sufism 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. 

 

The personal spiritual life of Sufi masters is characterised by an untiring, almost spiritual, search for union with divinity. According to Sufi teachings, the path to experiencing the divine presence starts within. It is said that one who realises oneself realises the Lord. God is present, but individuals cannot see Him because curtains of ignorance veil their eyes and the sensual impressions encase their hearts. It is embedded in us whether we live in communities or in the cloistered silence of a monastery. A common individual is ego-centered. It is only when he has polished the heart and purified the self do the curtains lift, the dust of materialism fall, and the eyes attain the vision required to see God.

 

Sufism connects us to the deeper layers of the authentic self and helps us in exploring it to achieve harmony. As the acclaimed modern Sufi Inayat Khan says: “The secret of life is balance and the absence of balance is life’s destruction.” We all have a divine spark in us and we can experience glimpses of the divine when we transcend our inner barriers. Pursuing such experiences, and letting them grow deeper can lead us into the cosmic realm and enable us to celebrate celestial love. As the well-known Persian poet, Saadi says: “Every soul is born with a certain purpose and the light of that purpose is kindled in his soul”.

 

The Sufi ideal is to combine the inner and outer life to be active in the world, and at the same time to be inspired by attuning to the divine ideal. Sufism digs out that water-like life which has been buried by the impressions of this material life. The purity of the Sufi is due to his constant remembrance of God. The Sufi’s heart is like white snow because of its purity, which it has attained through the remembrance of God. It is only a cleansed heart that can perceive the true beauty and harmony of the universe.

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