January 3, 1924
Chez Mlle Graeffe
I wish tell you of my conversation with a man yesterday, a man who was once a great believer, a Frenchman. And then from that believer he turned into an unbeliever and last night he came to see me. In conversation he told me that there was a time when he had such a belief, but there came something which had taken away his belief. I said, “I am sorry for your loss.” I said, “I would rather lose and trust, than distrust and gain.” He said, “What do you mean then by faith?” I said, “Trust.” He said, “Trust in what?” I said, “First trust in yourself. No one can trust in another if one has not the trust in oneself.” He said, “If in trusting someone you were disappointed, would you still trust?” I said, “After hundreds fooled me I would continue to trust. For there is no greater loss than the breaking of the trust, and the power that the trust gives is a power which nothing can equal.”
The golden words of my murshid which I remember, when he blessed me every day I met him, he said: “May your faith be strengthened.” I was a young man at that time; I doubted if my faith was little, and therefore my murshid said it. I sometimes wondered why he does not say: “May you be prosperous, healthy, may you live long. May you make a success, may you be happy, may you attain a very high spiritual attainment.” Why does he say such a simple thing, “May your faith be strengthened”? And it is now that I am beginning to see what it really meant. In the strength of the faith there is everything. And in the absence of that there is nothing. Nothing in anything. And where there is a faith, then in everything there is all that is necessary. You see, the presence of God and the absence of God both are conditions of faith: He is present when our faith allows us to see Him present. He is absent when our faith fails us to feel His presence. And what is God? God is all: wealth and health and prosperity and inspiration and success and progress and spirituality and goodness and peace and happiness and wisdom and all. Therefore Christ has said, “Seek ye the kingdom of God first and all else will be added.” I wish that my friends will realize every day more and more what is meant by our Sufi idea. The more they will realize, the more they will feel that it is more than a religion, more than a philosophy, more than a mysticism, for it is the very truth, which is our ideal and which we wish to attain.
One should not expect that by the initiation one should at once become a most inspirational person. It is possible, yet it is not promised. Nor is it promised that immediately after initiation a person will be as good as a saint, nor that he will see or do wonderful things; only it is promised that a helping hand will be given to him in seeking the truth for himself.
adapted from Complete Works of Hazrat Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan, 1924 I