With this instalment we conclude the series of posts on our relation to God. In the first post, Hazrat Inayat Khan named five aspects of our relation to God, and his explanation of the first and second aspects, ‘idealising’ and ‘recognising’, filled the first three posts of the series. Here, he deals with the other three aspects, ‘communicating,’ ‘realising’ and ‘perfection,’ and as they represent progressively higher states, there is less and less that can be said. As we see below, when he comes to ‘perfection,’ he contents himself with blessing his listeners and ending the lecture.
When an ordinary person, or an illiterate person, meets a poet, perhaps a great poet, he sees the man part and not the poet part. But if he is told the person is a poet, he may see the poet part when he meets him. He now sees the poet in his actions, in his words – in everything about him he sees the poet! But an ordinary person would not see the poet. On the other hand, a great poet may go among a crowd, and the people only see the man in him, they do not see the poet in him; they do not know how profound his thoughts are.
So, once you begin to recognize God in man, you do not see man anymore, but God. The man is the surface, while the God is deep in him. Such recognition brings you in touch with everyone’s inmost being, and you know more about them than they know themselves. You know his sorrow, his joys, his secrets. Such a person is called a “seer.” The seer sees God with his own eyes, and also recognizes his divine Beloved in every form, in every name. He reaches Him and touches the God part in every being, however limited that individual appears to be on the surface. From now on, there comes a softness in his nature, a magnetism, a charm, a beauty in him rarely to be found. Those people who have attained to this stage are able to meet people with awakened minds, and meeting such, wish to be with them forever. A very well-known seer went to see Jelaluddin Rumi when he was a chief judge, a Kazi, in the city of Konya. It was Shams-i-Tabriz. He came before the judge in the appearance of a savage. The first thing he did in coming before him was to throw his manuscripts into the pond.
Rumi looked at him, wondering about his action and why he should throw away all that knowledge, and asked him the reason for his action. The seeming vagrant said, “Because you have been reading all you life, and now you should do something more. You ought to understand what you are, and where you are. Everything before you is made of letters. If you could read them, then you could read life, and it would be greater than any scripture, better than any tradition that you can hear. It would disclose the secret of all being.” Rumi, after having looked at this person and his expression, and having heard all he said, was so won by him that he wrote down in his diary, “The God whom I have been worshipping all my life has today appeared to me in the form of a man.”
It is said, “By the vision of God, their self becomes God.” and again, “Their self will become God.” That happens when we come to see God in everybody. We develop goodness in our actions. Our words become God’s words, because we are impressed with all around us, with the mirror all around us. It reflects only goodness. Then we become a museum or picture of goodness. We reflect it all from morning to evening. We reflect forgiveness; we reflect tolerance; we reflect all these lovely qualities, because, “If my Beloved is in every kind of man, how thoughtful I ought to be to all.” The lover is always very careful when he is with his Beloved. He becomes thoughtful and tender. Now there remain only two more steps:
It is after feeling the presence of God and after being in communication with Him that we come to realize Him. When you can touch God in everybody, then God tells you about Himself, because He sees you have no hate, no prejudice. You have seen your Beloved, and your Beloved tells you all. Realization is still difficult, for it involves discerning the difference between me and you. What is the difference? It is a great question or problem. Your “I” and “you” is just like a pair of compasses with which we draw circles on drawing paper. The one point of the compass is the “I,” the other point is the “you,” and where it [the compass] joins there is no “I-you.” The “I” and “you” only remain as long as we see ourselves. But when we rise above them or beyond them, the thought brings us nearer and nearer to God in that consciousness in which we all unite. We are like the two points of the compass. Where they meet, there is no “I” or “you.” Self-realization is where the word is silent. The sage cannot say more than this because the subject is so vast. When we come to this conception, we find it is altogether too subtle, too vast to express.
Perfection and annihilation is that stage at which there is no longer “I” and no longer “you,” where there is what there is, and so…God bless you.