With this post we being an extended series of teachings on a theme that is central to the Sufism of Hazrat Inayat Khan – the divine Message and the Messenger who brings it. The Master begins by showing that, as rain is the result of a physical cycle, so the message is an aspect of a metaphysical cycle, descending upon the world when the need is greatest.
What is the Message? Where does it come from? How is it received by the souls who deliver it? These questions often arise in enquiring minds. And the answer is that the message is like rain, and rain falls where it is needed and when it is needed. But does the rain come from above? It seems to come from above, but it first rises from below. As the vapors rise first from the sea and turn into clouds, so every aspect of knowledge gained by all beings rises upwards like vapor, forming into clouds as ideas, and again falling from above like rain.
There are very many names for the seas, rivers, and streams, but they all contain water. And there are various names for religions, but they all contain the wisdom given at different times in different ways. There is lightning, there is thunder, and the rain falls; and there are wars and disasters before the message comes. Storms are very often warnings of what is to follow, and the different kinds of battles and revolutions are often warnings before the coming of peace.
It is sometimes asked why, if God is all-pervading, there is need of the special manifestation of a messenger such as Krishna, Buddha, or Jesus. The answer is given in the words of the Bhagavad Gita, where Sri Krishna says, ‘When Dharma is hindered, then I am born.’ This means that a manifestation which the people recognize as a savior or messenger, always comes when the necessity arises. In other words, it is necessity, it is the need of the world which causes the Spirit to arise in its true form.
Skepticism is the germ that causes decay at the heart of the tree of life. But always when one tree dies, another tree springs up; we see in our own lives, and especially at times when we are sunk in depression and sorrow, that some answer comes to the difficulty of the situation. It may come from a friend, from a brother or sister, from parents, from a beloved; one may even get what is necessary at such a moment from one’s enemy.
But why should a message only come in time of pain or after a great sorrow? Why should not a message come every day for one’s guidance? There are two reasons for this: one is that there is constant guidance from above, but man, so absorbed in his life’s activities, does not open his heart to listen to that message and to see where it comes from. And the other reason is that the deeper the sorrow, the higher the voice of the heart rises, until it reaches the throne of God; and that is the time when the answer comes.
To be continued…