Yet, at the same time the 'No' has a lot of 'Yes' into it. Let me explain in brief.
Sufis are Mystic Lover of God. And anybody can be a lover of God. Irrespective of his religion, ideology or anything. So upto that point religion or faith doesn't matter.
Now for Sufis, God is the Ultimate Object of Love and expression of Love. Now when you enter into such a reltionship, don't you think you should be committed? Isn't commitment an integral part of relationship of Love?? Without devotion what can be achieved, specially in the path of God?
And again, once you are a Lover of God, and God being the Ultimate Object, the Sufi should surrender himself to the Ultimate-Self. As the Lover always happy to give rather than to take from his lover; so is the sufi. And the name of this Nature of Surrender is called Islam (only thing is its an arabic word). Upto this point i don't mean Islam as Religion. Just as an expression of Submission to the Utimate Soul.
Now let me enter into the practices which we call 'Islam-the religion'. Islam as religion has some advantages for Sufis or even for modern mind. It is a religion which profess absolute direct relationship with God and Lover. There is no place for priest, father, monk, pope, intermediatary etc. A direct relationship with God which sometime transcend even own self.
So at the starting point you can be of any faith, but in the end, no matter how you come to it, ultimately Islam would become 'the staright path' to communicate and to be friend of God. Even if you don't know Islam, if you are a true Lover of God, your attitude will be submission, will be full of commitment to Him and will have certain devotion in it. I hope i could clear my position on this matter. If there is any confusion, pls do post comment or question. I will try to write more, God willing.
I think Inayat Khan expressed that view because he wanted to spread the Sufi message to West at a time when Islam was little known. So he wanted a more universal approach in it. And it worked for him.Tag: Spirituality, Sufi, God, Islam