As this is being posted, the pandemic is again increasing in intensity in many parts of the world, and so it seems appropriate to look at some counsel offered by Hazrat Inayat Khan after the First World War, when there was great suffering amongst soldiers maimed and wounded both in body and in mind, and amongst families that had lost loved ones.
Mystically, when we go into the presence of a wounded or sick person, we should think that by our presence alone he will be healed much more than by all the medicines, for they are drugs and we are the living souls, the higher beings. For this healing-power, three things are necessary. The first is confidence. If we think, “Perhaps I am a soul, or perhaps not. Perhaps I can have a healing influence, or perhaps not,” then we have no confidence. We have no healing power. The next is purity of life. To be pure in every respect is the greatest strength. From the presence of such a person an influence spreads.
The third thing necessary is concentration. When we go to a wounded person or a sick person, all our thoughts should be fixed on him, on the healing. If such thoughts come as: “I must go to the office for such a work,” or “I must go to the Holborn restaurant for luncheon,” or, “My aunt said she would write a letter, and she has not written,” then we have no concentration and we shall not heal the patient. We must develop the will by concentration.
This healing is usually done by the eyes or by the fingertips. There is a better way than this of healing, that is, to heal by your kindness. But this cannot be learned. If a person is not kind, he cannot learn to be so. The only thing is to practice kindness, to do kind actions, and so to develop the quality.
Looking at the world, we shall see that, besides these wounded, there are many other wounded. We shall see that the world is full of wounded, and among thousands we shall find scarcely one healthy person. There are the wounded by life and the wounded of the self. We should know how to treat these wounded also. There is a verse by a Hindustani poet: “First help into port the small boat, and then your own ship will come safely to harbor.” This means, stop in order to help another in his difficulty, and there will be every promise of your own undertaking being successful. But we can heal another only if we forget our own wounds. If these are always before our view, we cannot help others, and we shall never be healed ourselves.
The wounded by life are those who have suffered hard knocks and blows in the struggle for life. Everyone has some purpose to accomplish in life, some object for which he strives. And in this pursuit he experiences the opposition of others, the hardness of the struggle of life. The wounded of the self are those who are wounded in the struggle with the self, those who have given way to the habit of some drug or of alcohol, or the habit of bitterness of the mind. They may not wish to have this habit, but their weakness keeps them bound to it.
There are also those who are wounded by the disappointments, the discouragements that they have experienced in life, those who have lost hope. To heal this third sort of wounded, what is needed is knowledge. And the knowledge that is needed is God-consciousness. The mind must be focused together. It is the mind that we wish to heal. If I have a wound on my hand, and I am always conscious that I have this wound, it will never heal.
Shams Tabriz, a very great Sufi, was once called upon to make alive a king’s son who had died. He said to him first, “Kun bi ism-i Allah,” that is, “Arise in the name of God.” The prince did not arise. It is a long story but I am telling it in short. Then he said, “Kun bi ism-i,” that is; “Arise in my name.” The prince arose and was alive. For this, Shams Tabriz’ skin was taken off by order of the king. They said that “in my name” was the claim of being God, and the punishment for that was that the skin was taken off. And he very willingly let them take it off.
The first command was “Arise in the name of God.” For one who had attained to God-consciousness, this was not a fitting command, because it meant that God is a separate being. The second command was, “Arise in my name.” This was a right command, because a person who has God-consciousness knows that he is not separate from the Divine power. This story has a great moral, that, no matter how good, how pious, how virtuous we may be, unless we realize our at-one-ment with the Divine Being, we cannot have healing power.
God bless you.