The following was spoken by Hazrat Inayat Khan to a small group of mureeds in 1926, shortly before the end of the Summer School in Sureness, France. The mureeds, of course, were preparing to go home, but it was not generally known among them that Hazrat Inayat also would be leaving in a few days for India, a trip from which he himself doubted he would return. When the Norwegian mureed Shamcher Beorse took his leave that year, he said, “See you next year in the Summer School, Murshid!”, to which Hazrat Inayat replied, “From now on, Shamcher, you will meet me in your intuition.” Understanding these words as his farewell instructions gives them a special weight and feeling.
It is never possible to tell you in words how much devotion you may have for your Murshid and how much you may not have. Nor is it possible to tell in words how much faith you may have in Murshid and how much you may not have. And it is also impossible to say in words what you may think of Murshid and what you may not think. Only, if you will not measure it with a meter and will not weigh it on a scale, so much the better it will be.
I would leave to all mureeds and workers their own idea about the teachings. If there is anything I have taught which has not agreed with you, you will bear with me. It may be that one day you will understand. And if there is something that you have appreciated or understood, you must know that it belonged to you, that it was yours. And when an occasion comes to defend the Cause, the Message, Murshid, only remember that you need not say or think or feel what you yourself do not naturally think or feel of Murshid. You must not consider that you are bound under a duty to think of Murshid to be so and so, and to feel your Murshid to be so and so, and to keep Murshid on a certain height. It is not necessary. If you consider your Murshid your friend, your comrade, your counselor, that is quite enough. Only remember, the best way of respecting Murshid and holding him high in your sympathy and devotion is not to compare Murshid with anybody. Whatever you think of him, good or bad, high or low, it does not matter, but comparison is not necessary.
And now the question: what will you tell people about it, how will you present Murshid to people, how will you tell about the Message to people, how will you speak about the teachings. I leave it absolutely to you. At that same time I suggest: do not say anything about Murshid, the Message or the teachings that will antagonize people. If, instead of coming, they run away because of your talk, you may just as well not say anything. Besides, sometimes, if you tell a person in words, he is terrified to have interest. If you tell a person whose vanity will be wounded, whose pride will be burst against, and whose ideas will shatter, with that person you must go very gently, quietly. If you think that a person is against, you must not be in a hurry to turn him ‘for’ because you must know that it is difficult to turn a person ‘for,’ and that it is easiest to turn a person ‘against;’ go slowly. There will come a time when the person will interest himself more. Sometimes your reserve will win the person more than your words. And your gently going toward him will attract him more toward you than if you tell something hastily, because you will knock him down. One can bump against a person and make him fall just because one was in haste. It is exactly the same picture of those who are in haste to win a person for us.
And the last thing: that you will consider your Teacher with you when you are away. Murshid goes still more with you, for the very reason that you are away. And therefore you have no reason to think that you are separated or far away from Murshid. But you must feel confident that, for the very reason that you are away, and space has divided us, that Murshid is so much more near.