Hazrat Inayat: The Flute of Krishna

We continue with our occasional series of lectures by Hazrat Inayat Khan on the spiritual truth  that is expressed in symbols. Krishna is a Hindu avatar, meaning a manifestation of the Divine in human form, and he is often portrayed as playing a flute, usually while in a dance posture.

The Flute of Krishna

Krishna is pictured in Hindu symbology with a crown of peacock’s feathers, playing the flute. Krishna is the ideal of Divine Love, the God of Love. And the Divine Love expresses itself by entering into man and filling his whole being. Therefore the flute is the human heart, and a heart which is made hollow will become a flute for the God of Love to play upon. When the heart is not empty–in other words, when there is no scope in the heart–there is no place for love. Rumi, the great poet of Persia, explains the idea more clearly. He says the pains and sorrows the soul experiences through life are as holes made in a reed flute, and it is by making these holes that a player makes out of a reed a flute. Which means, the heart of man is first a reed, and the sufferings and pains it goes through make it a flute, which can then be used by God as the instrument to produce the music that He constantly wishes to produce. But every reed is not a flute, and so every heart is not His instrument. As the reed needs to be made into a flute, so the human heart can be turned into an instrument, and can be offered to the God of Love. It is the human heart which becomes the harp of the angels; it is the human heart which is known as the lute of Orpheus. It is on the model of the heart of man that the first instrument of music was made, and no earthly instrument can produce that music which the heart produces, raising the mortal soul to immortality.

The crown of peacock’s feathers leads to a further revelation, that it is the music of the heart which can be expressed through the head; it is the knowledge of the head and the love of the heart that expresses the Divine Message fully. The peacock’s feather has in all ages been considered as a sign of beauty and as a sign of knowledge: beauty because it is beautiful, knowledge because it is in the form of an eye. It is by keen observation that man acquires knowledge. Knowledge without love is lifeless. So, with the flute, the crown of peacock’s feathers makes the symbol complete.


2 Replies to “Hazrat Inayat: The Flute of Krishna”

    • Nawab Pasnak Post author

      Beloved sister Huma, Nirtan will smile when she sees your thanks, but she had nothing to do with this post. The text is from Hazrat Inayat Khan, and the pictures from the bounteous internet.
      Sending loving greetings,


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