According to our revered Guru Maharaj (left his body in 1961 north India) :
"Sufism is a way of life. It is neither a religion nor a philosophy. There
are Hindu Sufis, Muslim Sufis, Christian Sufis –
My revered Guru was
a Muslim Sufi , He belongs to the naqshabandiya Hindu branch of Sufism,
this path has been taken to the west by the Russian woman Irena Tweedie
................I hope this introduction will give a general idea.!!!!!!
Sufi is a name
given to a band of mystics who are lovers of God. There is an ancient story
about a group of lovers who were called "Kamal Posh" (blanket wearers),
thought by some to be early Sufis. Their only individual possessions
were their single blankets, which they wore during the day and wrapped
around themselves at night. They went to every prophet. No one could satisfy
them. Every prophet told them, do this or that, and they were not satisfied.
One day Mohammed said that Kamal Posh men were coming and that they would
arrive in so many days. They came on the day he said and, when they were
with him, he only looked at them without speaking. They were completely
satisfied. Why were they completely satisfied? Because he created love in
their hearts. "When love is created what dissatisfaction can there be?"(2)
Sufism is the
ancient wisdom of the heart. It is not limited by form, by time or place. It
always was and it always will be. There will always be those who need to
realize God as the Beloved. There will always be lovers of God. The Kamal
Posh recognized that Mohammed knew the silent mysteries of love. They stayed
with him and became assimilated into Islam.
means "surrender" and, while the esoteric side of Islam teaches the outer
religious law of surrender to God, there developed an inner esoteric side
which teaches of the lover's surrender to the Beloved. A century after the
death of the Prophet, small groups known as "Lovers of God" began to emerge
throughout the Muslim world. They were also known as "Travellers" or
"Wayfarers on the Mystical path," reflecting a saying ascribed to the
Be in this
world as if you are a traveller, a passer-by, with your clothes and
shoes full of dust. Sometimes you sit under the shade of a tree,
sometimes you walk in the desert. Be always a passer-by, for this is not
"Wayfarers" became known as Sufis, possibly referring to their white woollen
garments (sûf), or as an indication of their purity of heart (safâ).
These small groups of Sufis gathered around their teacher, or sheikh.
The inner teachings of the path are transmitted from teacher to disciple.
Each teacher guides his disciples according to the principles he has
received from his teacher. The essence of the teaching is not verbal, but a
direct communion from heart to heart. The Kamal Posh stayed with
Mohammed because he created love in their hearts, and it is the inner
communion of the heart that is the core of the Sufi path. The relationship
of lover and Beloved is reflected in the relationship with the teacher who
guides his disciples, or murshids, with an openness of heart and an
understanding of the mysteries of love.
At the core of all
Sufi practices is the element of love and devotion. Devotion is the inner
attitude of the lover, and the nature of the Sufi path is devotional. The
Sufi aspires to giveherself to God as a lover to her Beloved. Devotion is an
opening of the heart to the grace that flows through love. It is an attitude
of surrender in which the ego and the mind are surrendered to a mystery
beyond their comprehension. In giving ourselves to God we allow Him to take
us Home, and the quickest way is through the door of love. In the words of
al-Qushayri, "The inner reality of love means that you give all of yourself
to the One until nothing remains of you for you."
It is said that
there are two ways of attracting God's attention. Either we make ourselves
perfect and then He has to love us, or we give our self to Him and then He
cannot resist our need to be with Him. The attitude of devotion is an
offering of our whole self to Him whom we love. This inner offering is a
dynamic state of surrender which attracts the higher energies of love. Just
as in nature a vacuum is always filled, so is the inner emptiness of
surrender filled with His presence.
an empty space within the psyche which allows us to experience the power of
the Self without being overwhelmed or inflated. Sufi practices are designed
to help us to surrender, and to realize that we are contained by something
far beyond the limited horizons of the mind and ego. Stepping into the inner
spaces of our own being we are able to experience the potency of His love
for His servant.
Sufism has explored
the ways of love and developed means to help the seeker travel this
invisible and yet powerful path. Because the purpose of the path is to
reveal the inner essence of the wayfarer, Sufism stays attuned to humanity.
The deepest nature of mankind remains the same and yet surface changes take
place. It is said that Sufism has stayed alive and preserved its dynamism
through adapting and changing with the times and yet at the same time
remaining true to the essence of the tradition. The essence of the tradition
is the inner alignment of the heart towards God, and the surrender of the
ego that allows His will to be done. But outwardly, as society and culture
develop and change, so does Sufism respond to these changes.
There is a
Sufi group in California who belongs to the same path, most of them were
disciples of Ms Irene Tweedie...for more information about this Sufi path
you can contact
I hope you
have got an idea about sufism .....all the paths lead to freedom !!!