Friday, March 31, 2006

Mysteries on Prayer (2)

In the question of prayer, "Why does God need praise from me? Who am I that I should offer Him praise?" The Mystic Master Inayat Khan answers:

True, we can never praise Him enough; never can our praise be sufficient, but our souls are blessed with the impression of the Glory of God whenever we praise Him. The soul could praise God every moment and yet wanting to praise Him yet more, it is constantly hungering and thirsting to find the Beauty and Perfection of God. By the praise of God the soul is filled with bliss; even to utter the name of God is a blessing that can fill the soul with light, joy and happiness as nothing else can do.

If we realized what joy comes after we have asked pardon from our fellowman when we know we have been in fault, a joy and bliss not to be imagined unless we have practiced it, then we might perhaps imagine what joy and peace must come from asking forgiveness of God, Whose Love is unlimited. Asking pardon is like purifying the heart and washing it white.

There is a beautiful story told of the King Akbar (of India) that when he was grieving with an almost ungovernable grief over the death of his mother, his ministers and friends tried to comfort him by influence and power. Akbar replied, "Yes, that is true, and that only makes my grief greater; for while I have everyone to bow before me, to give way to me, to salute me and obey me, my mother was the one person before whom I could humble myself; and I cannot tell you how great a joy that was to me."

Think, then, of the far greater joy of humbling one-self before the Father-Mother God on Whose Love one can always depend. A spark only of love expresses itself in the human father and mother; the Whole of Love in God. In whatever manner a man humbles himself it can never be enough to express the humility of the limited self before Limitless Perfection. Self-denial is not renouncing of things, it is denying the self and the first lesson of self-denial is humility.

Who is Mystic Inayat Khan? What are his teachings?

:: More thoughts on Prayer by Inayat Khan.

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Thursday, March 30, 2006

Mysteries on Prayer (1)

This is a continuation of the post, Wisdom from Talmud that discuss about why we may need to pray if God knows all? What are the other dimension regarding the need for prayer?

I'm a big fan of Sufi Master Inayat Khan. Time and time again i find my answers in his own thinking. So i would like to quote from Inayat Khan which is taken from the book, "A Sufi Master Answers: On the sufi message of Hazrat Inayat Khan", by Dr. Elisabeth Keesing.

Man often thinks that, as God is the Knower of the heart there can be no need of any recital or gesture in prayer; but that it would surely be sufficient if he were to sit in the silence and think of God. But this is not so; it is according to the extent of a man's consciousness of prayer that this prayer reaches God. If your body is still and only your mind is working, it means that part of your being is in prayer and part not; for man has both mind and body, so that the complete being must be praying. In reality God is within man; man is the instrument of God and through him God experiences the external world.

Prayer is the way of conveying the God within to the God without; and thought, speech and gesture make the prayer complete.

Man asks another question as to why God, Who knows already what he wants and what is the need of his life, should require to be asked at all. For answer to this we have the words of Christ; "Ask and ye shall receive; knock and it shall be opened unto you." In other words, this means that though God knows your need it has to become clear and definite to "yourself" by prayer.

In the next post i would like to post on: "Why does God need praise from me? Who am I that I should offer Him praise?"
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Jesus actually

In one of my earlier post i'm having some discussion with my friend Matthew. It all started with Matthew asking this question about Jesus,

"I dont care what word Jesus used for God. the fact is that he said he was the SON of this god, hence his crucifiction. And if muslims pray to "the same God" then he must also be the father of Jesus but for a muslim to say such a thing is blasphemy.

This is as far as i know anyway, please let me know if i am wrong."

The original post is here. It's titled, What word did Jesus use to call God? You can check the discussion.

Its mostling hovering around the idea of Jesus's Divinity. Was he really 'the exclusive' son of God?

Infact such discussion between Muslim and Christian theologist has been held many times in the past. You can find such a discussion here as well.

The very idea of Trinity confused many modern christian thinkers who eventually left the church over this issue, finding no logical conclusion. May accepted Islam in the process of finding true message of Jesus (peace be upon him). I hope you can also discover 'Jesus actually'. Follow some of my links in the discussion. No doubt its a fascinating adventure.
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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Mystics teach ....

Yellow Flower
Originally uploaded by Hunaish.
Mystics teach simple things,

And those simple things change people's lives.

- Irina Tweedie

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Wisdom from Talmud

Before you ask God for what you want, first thank God for what you have.

- Talmud, B'rachot 30b

And do you think after you thank God enough for what you have, you will have enough time to ask for anything? Just ponder how much each of us is gifted, each moments.

And even if you manage time, know that He always fulfill your wants that is good for you. How often we want something which is not good for us!

And what does that summerize? It summerizes, you never need to ask your wants in prayer, all you have to do is remember His grace, thank Him for what He gave. That would be enough. That is why in the Final Testament, The Holy Quran: Rememberance of God is mentioned as the greatest virtue.

Then you might ask, why we need prayer? Why people are encouraged to ask in prayers? Well, prayer has another purpose or another dimension all together. I will post about it next.
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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

More Thoughts on Perfection

Inayat Khan

THE ROCKS, the trees, the animals, and man all in their turn show an inclination to seek perfection. The tendency of rocks is to form into mountains reaching upward. And the waves are ever reaching upward as if they were trying to attain something which is beyond their reach. The tendency of birds is the same. Their joy is flying in the air and going upward. The tendency of many animals is to stand on their hind legs. And man, who is the culmination of creation has this tendency from infancy to stand up. An infant, who is not yet able to stand, moves his little hands and legs showing the desire to do so.

This all shows the desire for perfection. The law of gravitation is only half known to the world of science which believes that the earth attracts all that belongs to it. It is true. But the spirit also attracts all that belongs to it, and that other side to the law of gravitation has always been known to the mystics. The law of gravitation is working from two sides: from the side of the earth which draws all that belongs to the earth, and from the side of the spirit which attracts the soul towards it. Even those who are unconscious of this law of gravitation are also striving for perfection, for the soul is being continually drawn towards the spirit. They are striving for perfection just the same. In the small things of everyday life a man is never satisfied with what he has. He always wants more and more, be it a higher rank, wealth, or fame. He is always striving for this.

This shows that the heart is like a magic bowl. However much you pour into it, it only becomes deeper. It is always found to be empty. The reason why man is never satisfied is that he is unconsciously striving for perfection. Those however who strive consciously after perfection have a different way. Nevertheless, each atom of the universe is meant to struggle and strive in order to become perfect one day. In other words, if a seer happens to be in the mountains he will hear the mountains cry continually, 'We are waiting for that day when something in us will awaken. There will come a day of awakening, of unfoldment. We are silently awaiting it.' If he went into the forest and saw the trees standing there they would tell him that they too were waiting patiently. One can feel it. The more one sits there the more one feels that the trees are waiting for the time when there will be an unfoldment. So it is with all beings. But man is so absorbed in his everyday actions and his greed that he seems to be unaware of that innate desire for unfoldment. It is his everyday tasks, his avariciousness, his cruelty to other beings, that keep him continually occupied, and that is why he cannot hear the continual cry of his own soul to awaken, to unfold, to reach upward, to expand, and to go towards perfection.

It is the nature of God to wish to realize His own perfection. An artist wishes to bring out the best that is in him. Therein lies his satisfaction. In every soul there is a longing to bring out, to bring to a culmination, what is waiting within. And as soon as it has realized this longing the purpose of that soul's birth on earth has been fulfilled.

As is the nature of the creatures, so is the nature of the Creator. His satisfaction also lies in the realization of perfection. It was to this end that everything was created. By going through this entire process His nature was perfected, wherein lies the fulfillment of His own desire.

All that is in our nature is in the nature of God. The only difference is that God is great and we are small. We are limited and God is unlimited. We represent imperfection, God represents perfection. As we sleep God sleeps too. If we can be unconscious, there is also God's unconsciousness. It is said in the Bible, that in God's image was man created. If one wishes to study God, one must study man.

Is it possible for man to reach perfection? When one sees how limited man is one can never believe that he is entitled to perfection. There is no end to his limitations and he cannot even comprehend what perfection means. One becomes pessimistic when it is a question of perfection. Yet we read in the Bible the words of Christ, 'Be ye perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect.' This shows that there is indeed a possibility of it. All philosophies, all religious and sacred teachings, are intended to bring about that realization which is called perfection. Any philosophy or religion that does not show this path to perfection has been corrupted and fails. There is something missing in it.
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Monday, March 27, 2006

Boundless waves, anticipation and destination

Land & Water - vol.I
Originally uploaded by | HD |.
Boundless waves splash on the rocky shore,
with full of anticipation.

The rocks mock,
“What anticipation?”

It is to reach the destination.

The darkness doubts,

Destination for which they
Traveled endless miles.
Reborn unknown number of times.

© MysticWings
March 4, 2006 Pin It Now!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Today is the Independence Day of Bangladesh

Today is my native country, Bangladesh's independent day. Its a small country (slightly smaller than Iowa) but with a great volume of population. Infact Bangladesh (pronounced as baang-la-desh), is the 8th largest population in the world.

Bangladesh is located just beside India. We also share border with Myanmar or Burma. We were part of Pakistan before 1971 as Indian Subcontinent was divided by the British into India and Pakistain in 1947. The people of Bangladesh are very open, secular minded and not ultra-orthodoxly religious. As part of Pakistan we never had our proper rights acknowledged which eventually led to struggle for independence. After 9 months of bloody fighting, losing a huge population in the war against Pakistani army in 1971; the People's republic of Bangladesh achieved it's independence.

Because of huge burden of population the country is still a developing country. But the huge potential is there and its located at the cross road of South and East Asia. The people of the land are friendly, every happy. Cultural and religious harmony among diverse people is something Bangladesh is proud of.

Join us with the celebration of the birth of a brave nation who fought their independence with blood.

26th March of 1971 is the glorious day of declarance of Independence of Bangladesh.

Learn more about Bangladesh here. Pin It Now!

Glory be to Thee, O my God!

Glory be to Thee, O my God! Thou hearest Thine ardent lovers lamenting in their separation from Thee, and such as have recognized Thee wailing because of their remoteness from Thy presence. Open Thou outwardly to their faces, O my Lord, the gates of Thy grace, that they may enter them by Thy leave and in conformity with Thy will, and may stand before the throne of Thy majesty, and catch the accents of Thy voice, and be illumined with the splendors of the light of Thy face.

Potent art Thou to do what pleaseth Thee. None can withstand the power of Thy sovereign might. From everlasting Thou wert alone, with none to equal Thee, and wilt unto everlasting remain far above all thought and every description of Thee. Have mercy, then, upon Thy servants by Thy grace and bounty, and suffer them not to be kept back from the shores of the ocean of Thy nearness. If Thou abandonest them, who is there to befriend them; and if Thou puttest them far from Thee, who is he that can favor them? They have none other Lord beside Thee, none to adore except Thyself. Deal Thou generously with them by Thy bountiful grace.

Thou, in truth, art the Ever-Forgiving, the Most Compassionate.

Credit: Bahai Prayers.
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Saturday, March 25, 2006

Respect the differences

Respect the differences.

We really miss it in today's world of convergence. And the differences could be in every aspect, from our skin color to our belief to our culture and everything. Pin It Now!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

What is perfection?

Recently one of my visitor to the blog asked this question in the comment section:

Every moment can be a clean create ourself. In terms of biology and evolution...everything is a mutant. So if everything is a mutant....what is perfection?

This is what i can answer from my limited understanding, pls forgive me for doing it very fast and short. If possible and more thoughts come to me i will addup to it later. But for the moment here is my inspiration on this:

The very fact that everything is changing is a sign that we all strive for perfection, knowingly or unknowingly.

But bear in mind that its God who is the Perfection and only He alone is The Perfect One.

The Perfect is just another glorious name of the One. The Final Messenger, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) taught 99 great attributal names of God and one of it is Mutakabbir, meaning The Perfection of Greatness.

Since we are created in His own Image, so it is inherent in us that we strive for perfection. The very idea of perfection attracts us. Thats why we love beauty, thats why anything that is more perfect attract us more. We evolve to take us near to the God Ideal of prection in every aspect.

So to answer your question, "what is perfection?" ... i would say, it is our inspiration that take us near to God Ideals, is the journey to perfection. The striving to be close to God's very image of perfection is the journey back home. Home from where we came and the home where we all go back.

In the Final Testament, The Holy Quran we have this beautiful verse: Inna nillahi wa inna ilaihi rajiun (the arabic pronounciation) , which (closely) means: Indeed we are from God and unto Him is the return.

+ Journeying Towards Perfection - mysticsaint poetry

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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

The pain of life is ...

Originally uploaded by misarco.
The old Master instructed the unhappy young man to put a handful of salt in a glass of water and then to drink it. “How does it taste?” the Master asked. “Awful,” spat the apprentice. The Master chuckled and then asked the young man to take another handful of salt and put it in the lake.

The two walked in silence to the nearby lake and when the apprentice swirled his handful of salt into the lake, the old man said, “Now drink from the lake.” As the water dripped down the young man’s chin, the Master asked, “How does it taste?” “Good!” remarked the apprentice. “Do you taste the salt?” asked the Master. “No,” said the young man.

The Master sat beside this troubled young man, took his hands, and said, “The pain of life is pure salt; no more, no less. The amount of pain in life remains the same, exactly the same. But the amount we taste the ‘pain’ depends on the container we put it into. So when you are in pain, the only thing you can do is to enlarge your sense of things….. Stop being a glass. Become a lake!”

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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Matrimony Mosaic : Whats common in different faiths

In, there is an interesting article on whats common in weddings between Hindu, Jewish and Roman Catholic faith.

The Hindu wedding: In the Hindu wedding the primary ritual, that of the saptpadi or marital vows is centered around the fire lit in the havan, symbolising the illumination of the mind, knowledge and happiness. The vows are taken in front of the sacred element which is believed to symbolise Agni , the Radiant One. This act enunciates that the couple is invoking the sacred fire to witness their union and hence further sanctify their marriage. This also ensures that God's wisdom, truth and justice have presided over the nuptials.

The Jewish wedding
: In the Jewish tradition two candles are carried to escort the bride and groom to the wedding canopy. The lighting of fire within the Jewish tradition is an act to ward off the evil eye. This belief stems from the age-old superstition that spirits and devils are fearful of fire and hence won't come near it. Another traditional explanation holds that the numerical value for the Hebrew word candle (nair) has the same value as the biblical phrase in Genesis (1:28) "Be fruitful and multiply."

The Roman Catholic wedding
: In Roman Catholic weddings the significance of fire is two-fold. After the consecration of the marriage vows the bride and groom proceed to the light the Unity Candle which symbolises the union of the couple in holy matrimony. They extinguish the separate lights of the side candles and light the single large center candle. Following this is the Candlelight Blessing which is done by the priest in confirmation of this symbolism. The significance of this ritual stems from the belief of the Catholic world that the candle is the symbol of Christ, the light of the world.

Article continues. Read more ...
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MysticSaint Arts (1) : Joy in my eye

Pablo Picasso made a very interesting statement: "Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."

Indeed every child is an artist. You can know that by observing how they fluently go with their creative skill when they get a pencil or chalk and a piece of wall or paper. Like every child i was also an artist in my childhood. In some middle time i lost my artistic passion now and then. But i compensated that with graphics designing, and now i'm back into being an artist. Thanks to the drawing tablet, now it can complement the art in digital format.

This picture titled: "Joy in my eye" is a collage from a photograph of mine and combination of digital art. Drawn: 21st March, 2006. Singapore Pin It Now!

Monday, March 20, 2006

An important question to ask

"WHAT did you DO last time for the FIRST time?"

This is a very important question we can ask ourselves time and time. Why this is important?

Because life is a dynamic process and its the purpose of our life that we evolve in every moment and move towards perfection. And we can only attain evolution when we go through positive changes. Positive changes follow positive actions.

End of the day, when we come to the end of this life, we may ask: did we live fully?

And to answer that before we reach our end we must ask this very question whenever we find opportunity, "WHAT did I DO last time for the FIRST time?"

By engaging into new adventure, by venturing into new things we enrich our lives. Thats why pls do ask yourself what did you do last time for the first time. If you can't find any, do consider something new. Something your soul wants but you are afraid to do. It could be very trivial like walking on your city on foot all night, it could be seeing the sunrise sitting on a mountain top or visiting a place of worship of an unknown religion or just to be alone the whole day in a solitude place like a park.

By doing something for the first time, you give back life an opportunity to breath freshness. And thus you enrich your soul. God willing, the rewards will surely come and you will see that for yourself.

Discover life, its too precious to let go without tasting it.
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Becoming less and less

Mysticism is becoming less and less,
until one becomes nothing.
Only then one reach the Ultimate Nothingness.

And that becoming nothing is
called by many names in many traditions.

Sufis call it Fana, Buddha called it Nirvana
Hindus call it Merging of soul with Ultimate Soul.

No matter what you call,
It’s the same acknowledgement
and journey into the Oneness of the One.

(c) MysticSaint. (Singapore) Pin It Now!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

True Renunciation

Flying Monk
Originally uploaded by Smatchmo.
To renounce what we cannot gain is not true renunciation, it is weakness.

:: by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

To renounce what we cannot gain is not true renunciation, it is weakness. When the apples are so high up on the branch of the tree that we cannot reach them, we try to and cannot, if we then say, "The apples are sour. I don't want them", that is not renunciation. If we climb the tree and get the apples and cut them in half, then we may say, "They are sour", and throw them away.

If we say, "I cannot have my wish. It is not intended by the will of God. I am resigned to the will of God", that is not resignation. Why should it not be meant for us to have our wish? Behind our will there is the will of God. God desires it through us. Christ said, "If ye desire bread, He will not give a stone". By this we see that it is natural for us to have our desire, it is natural for us to have health and riches and success and all things. It is unnatural to have illnesses and failures and miseries. But if, after gaining all the wealth in the world, position and titles, then we give it up, then that will be true renunciation.


The real spirit of renunciation is willingness; and willing renunciation comes when one has risen above the thing one renounces. The value of each thing in life, wealth, power, position, possession, is according to the evolution of man. There is a time in his life when toys are his treasures, and there is a time when he puts them aside. ...

There are two different renunciations: one is renunciation, the other is loss. True renunciation is that which a person makes who has risen above something that he once valued; or whose hunger and thirst for the thing are satisfied and it is no more so valuable as it once was; or who perhaps has evolved and sees life differently, no longer as he saw it before.

Renunciation in all these cases is a step forward towards perfection. But the other renunciation is one which a person is compelled to make when circumstances prevent his achieving what he wishes to achieve or from getting back what he has lost helplessly; or when, by weakness of mind or body, by lack of position, power, or wealth, he cannot reach the object he desires. That renunciation is a loss; and instead of leading towards perfection it drags man down toward imperfection. ...

The final victory in the battle of life for every soul is when he has abandoned, which means when he has risen above, what once he valued most. For the value of everything exists for man only so long as he does not understand it. When he has fully understood, the value is lost, be it the lowest thing or the highest thing. It is like looking at the scenery on the stage and taking it for a palace. Such is the case with all things of the world; they seem important or precious when we need them or when we do not understand them; as soon as the veil which keeps man from understanding is lifted, then they are nothing.

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Saturday, March 18, 2006

Some links on Sufism

Here are some good links i just discovered over the net. Putting it up here for future references.

:: An Introduction to Sufism : An article on Sufism, which includes information on its origin, orders, rituals, teachings, literature, arts and contemporary Sufism.

:: Sufism Sufis Sufi Orders : Contains information on the philosophy and religion of Sufism, its relationship with Islam and the West, together with information on Sufi masters and their orders.

:: Sufi Resources : Provides links to Sufi related information on the net.

:: Info : Furnishes a list of links on Sufism on the internet.

:: Sufism : Provides information on the history, literature, practices, theosophy and significances of Sufism.

:: Alokdhara : This is an online journal on Sufi studies with a multi-disciplinary approach.

:: The Gnosis Archive : Presents an outline of the philosophy, stages, sources, history, orders and methods of Sufism.

:: Sufi Psychology Association : Contains links to journals, conferences, information and membership applications.

:: Islam, Sufism and the Tradition of Chisti Qadhiri : Provides an introduction to Sufism, its relationship with Islam and the Holy Quran, together with information on Sufi art and Sufi concepts.

:: Rumi : Provides information on the life, works, poetry and discourses of this great Sufi master. About Jalaluddin Rumi : Contains a brief biography of Rumi, together with links to quotations from his works. Also, Rumi furnishes information about his life, translations of his works, poetry, a Rumi picture gallery and an egreetings section.

:: Amir Khusro Website : Provides links to the lyrics, songs, poetry and legends of this Indian Sufi poet.

:: Rumi's Mathnavi

:: Life Positive Sufism page Pin It Now!

From a sufi article

"Sufism takes the self to the self."

"The experience of beauty and its impact on the heart is the biggest prayer."

"Love is a very strong force to bring about a positive change in society."

Muzaffar Ali is film director, artist, fashion designer, Sufi follower and politician. The quotes are taken from this article.

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A child can teach you

lady o
Originally uploaded by .serena..
"A child can always teach an adult three things:

:: to be happy for no reason,

:: to always be busy with something,

:: and to know how to demand with all his might that which he desires."

- Paulo Coelho's 'The Fifth Mountain'
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Friday, March 17, 2006

Divine is always present

How long will you ignore Her Presence?
The time has come,
Embrace Her within your arms.

The Divine calls all the moment.

Listen to your Heart my friend
And know in your heart that
the Divine is always present.

(c) MysticSaint. Singapore Pin It Now!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Religion and Thoughts

Interestingly the limited ideas of religion that we have created were never the ideas by the messengers and enlightened persons who brought the 'quintessential essence' to the mankind. The term religion is created out of sectarian zeal, divisional tendency.

Christ neither proclaimed any religion nor he asked to call it 'Christian religion'. All he wanted was purify the social system and hearts of people.

All Buddha talked was about was 'dharma', meaning 'path'. He would be extremely disappointed if he knew it was renamed to Buddhism. He even talked against idolatry whereas its his idol that is at the center of today's so called Buddhism.

Abraham never tried to invent something new. He rather derived the logical philosophical conclusion about the Creator from deeper observations of the Signs in creation. Yet the three great religions are derived from Abrahamic inspirations who fight among each others about religious values.

Prophet Muhammad never claimed a new religion. Rather he said it is the most natural condition (submission to Divine) with which every child is born with. He even said I came to teach good behavior and morality.

Guru Nanak who is thought to be the founder of so called sikhism tried to bring harmony among people of different faiths. He professed in the faith of One God. Yet people made it into a new religion all together.

And the list goes on for all enlightened personalities from all ages. So we really need to put behind the blinding ideas about religion and better grasp the very 'quintessential essence' of the teaching and ideals.

May peace and blessings be with all the enlightened ones (the messengers and prophets).

15 March 06 // Malaysia.
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Monday, March 13, 2006

Sikhism and its connection with Islam

Sikhism is one of the most recent religious faith, only 500 years old. It has strong influence from Islam, specially Sufi Islam. The founder, Baba Nanak Sahib {Guru Nanak Dev (14691538)} did not intend to establish a new religion of his own. One of his principal aims was to build bridges of love and harmony between people of different faiths and communities, exhorting them to serve the one God. Now, in Arabic, one who surrenders himself or herself to God and God’s Will is called a ‘Muslim’, and this is why many Sufis consider Baba Nanak Sahib to have been a true Muslim.

The Udasis or accounts of the travels of Baba Nanak Sahib tell us that he traveled to Mecca for the Hajj or Islamic Pilgrimage. He is also said to have spent six long years in Baghdad, which was then a major centre for the Sufis. Here he studied with many leading Sufis of his day, and it is said that he was presented by the Sufis of the city with a turban as a token of respect and honor. In Baghdad , in the courtyard of the shrine of Hazrat Bahlol Danaai, a famous Sufi, there is a shrine which mentions that Baba Nanak Sahib stayed there. The shoes, the Muslim-style prayer mat [ja-namaz] and the blanket of Baba Nanak and the copy of the Holy Qur’an which he used to regularly read, are also preserved there. Baba Nanak Sahib’s chief disciple was Mardana, who remained a Muslim till he died, and he served Baba Nanak Sahib for sixty-four long years. Mardana’s descendants still live in Lahore. They describe themselves as Sikh-Muslims.

Basic faiths of Sikhism:

Sikhism began about 500 years ago by Guru Nanak, word Sikh is derived from the word Sisya (disciple)

Scripture : Adi Granth (Guru Granth Sahib), Sikhs follow path of japa (recitation) of hymn, devotional prayers (kirtana) singing the names of God (e.g., Nam Simran)

Belief in ten Gurus - spiritual guide who dispels ignorance and darkness

God is creator of the universe and its existence and continued survival depends on His hukum (will)

Monistic or Non-dual, ultimate reality is unity of all existence, God is both Saguna (with attributes) and Nirguna (without attributes), and is called by names such as Sat (truth), Sat Guru (true Guru), Akal Purkh (timeless being), kartar (creator) and Wahi-Guru (praise to the God).

Sikh is immersed in God assimilated, identified with Him. It is the fulfillment of individuality in which man, freed of all limitation becomes co-extensive and co-operant and co-present with God.

Guru Gobind Singh (last living Guru) organized Sikh tradition of Khalsa (pure one). Male members traditionally wear 5 "k"s, uncut hair and beard (kesh), comb (kanga), traditional shorts (kacha), wrist ring (kada), sword (kirpan).

Attachment to material objects is the primary cause of rebirth on the basis of past karma (action)

Only way to achieve liberation (mukti) from the cycle of birth and death is by being God-conscious (gurmukh)

Does not believe in incarnation of God in human form. Disapproves asceticism and self mortification as path to enlightenment.

From, Sufi News // Hindunet // The Birth of Sikhism // Sikhism // Inter relation of Sikh Gurus and Sufis // About Guru Nanak

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Sunday, March 12, 2006

Reading now: The Fifth Mountain

i have started reading Paulo Coelho's The Fifth Mountain. Another beautiful writing i must say, and also an international bestseller. i send my saalams (blessings of peace) to Paulo Coelho. Blessed be your hands.

There are so many lovely lines in the novel. Let me quote here.

"Who is God? Elijah continued ... (why) Does God kill the faithful, the innocent, those who follow the law ... ?"

Levite replies, "God is all-powerful. if He limited Himself to doing only that which we call good, we chould not call Him the Almighty; He would command only one part of the universe, and there would exist someone more powerful than He, watching and judging His acts. In that case, I would worship that more powerful someone."

"If He is all-powerful why doesn't He spare the sufferings of those who love Him? Why doesn't He save them, instead of giving might and glory to His enemies?"

"I don't know", said the Levite, "But a reason exists, and I hope to learn it soon."

Lovely wisdom, isn't it?
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Attain Soul's desire

The religion of each one is the attainment of his soul's desire; when he is on the path of that attainment he is religious; when he is off that path then he is irreligious, impious.

Bowl of Saki, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

Religion is a need of the human soul. In all periods and at every stage of the evolution of humanity there has been a religion which people followed, for at every period the need for religion has been felt. The reason is that the soul of man has several deep desires, and these desires are answered by religion.

The first desire is the search for the ideal. There comes a time when man seeks for a more complete justice than he finds among men, and when he seeks for someone on whom he can rely more surely than he can on his friends in the world. There comes a time when man feels a desire to open his heart to a Being who is above human beings and who can understand his heart. ... He feels the need of asking forgiveness of someone who is above human pettiness, and of seeking refuge under someone stronger than he. And to all these natural human tendencies there is an answer which is given by religion, and that answer is God.


When speaking on the subject of ideal life, the words of the Prophet of Islam may be quoted, where he says, 'Every soul has its own religion.' This means that every soul has a certain direction which it has chosen, a goal to attain during life. This goal is a certain ideal, which depends on the soul's evolution. ... In the Hindu language, the same word, Dharma, means both duty and religion. Both are expressed by one word. 'This is your Dharma' means: 'This is your faith.' How beautiful the thought is! Whatever kind of duty it is, so long as you have an ideal before you and are performing that duty, you are walking in the path of religion.

We, with our narrowness of faith or belief, accuse others of belonging to another religion, another chapel or church. We say, 'This temple is better, that faith is better.' The whole world has kept on fighting and devastating itself just because it can not understand that each form of religion is peculiar to itself. Therefore, the ideal life is in following one's own ideal. It is not in checking other people's ideals.


The whole aim of the Sufi is, by thought of God, to cover his imperfect self even from his own eyes, and that moment when God is before him and not his own self, is the moment of perfect bliss to him. My Murshid, Abu Hashim Madani, once said that there is only one virtue and one sin for a soul on the path: virtue when he is conscious of God and sin when he is not.

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Saturday, March 11, 2006

Mind must be wide open

Hand in Meditation
Originally uploaded by Mystic Lens.
The mind must be
Wide open
To function freely
In thought.

A limited mind
Can not think freely.

The Perfect Way
Is only difficult
For those who pick and choose.

Do not like, do not dislike.
All will then Be clear.

Credit:: Zen Wisdom
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Friday, March 10, 2006

A touching story to share

At a fundraising dinner for a school that serves learning disabled children, the father of one of the students delivered a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended. After extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he offered a question:

"When not interfered with by outside influences, everything nature does is done with perfection. Yet my son, Shay, cannot learn things as other children do. He cannot understand things as other children do. Where is the natural order of things in my son?"

The audience was stilled by the query.
The father continued. "I believe that, when a child like Shay, physically and mentally handicapped comes into the world, an opportunity to realize true human nature presents itself, and it comes, in the way other people treat that child."

Then he told the following story:
Shay and his father had walked past a park where some boys Shay knew were playing baseball. Shay asked, "Do you think they'll let me play?" Shay's father knew that most of the boys would not want someone like Shay on their team, but the father also understood that if his son were allowed to play, it would give him a much-needed sense of belonging and some confidence to be accepted by others in spite of his handicaps.

Shay's father approached one of the boys on the field and asked if Shay could play, not expecting much. The boy looked around for guidance and said, "We're losing by six runs and the game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we'll try to put him in to bat in the ninth inning."

Shay struggled over to the team's bench put on a team shirt with a broad smile and his Father had a small tear in his eye and warmth in his heart. The boys saw the father's joy at his son being accepted. In the bottom of the eighth inning,

Shay's team scored a few runs but was still behind by three. In the top of the ninth inning, Shay put on a glove and played in the right field. Even though no hits came his way, he was obviously ecstatic just to be in the game and on the field, grinning from ear to ear as his father waved to him from the stands. In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shay's team scored again. Now, with two outs and the bases loaded, the potential winning run was on base and Shay was scheduled to be next at bat.

At this juncture, do they let Shay bat and give away their chance to win the game? Surprisingly, Shay was given the bat.

Everyone knew that a hit was all but impossible because Shay didn't even know how to hold the bat properly, much less connect with the ball.

However, as Shay stepped up to the plate, the pitcher, recognizing the other team putting winning aside for this moment in Shay's life, moved in a few steps to lob the ball in softly so Shay could at least be able to make contact. The first pitch came and Shay swung clumsily and missed. The pitcher again took a few steps forward to toss the ball softly towards Shay. As the pitch came in, Shay swung at the ball and hit a slow ground ball right back to the pitcher.

The game would now be over, but the pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could have easily thrown the ball to the first baseman. Shay would have been out and that would have been the end of the game.

Instead, the pitcher threw the ball right over the head of the first baseman, out of reach of all team mates. Everyone from the stands and both teams started yelling, "Shay, run to first! Run to first!" Never in his life had Shay ever run that far but made it to first base. He scampered down the baseline, wide-eyed and startled.

Everyone yelled, "Run to second, run to second!"

Catching his breath, Shay awkwardly ran towards second, gleaming and struggling to make it to second base. By the time Shay rounded towards second base, the right fielder had the ball, the smallest guy on their team, who had a chance to be the hero for his team for the first time. He could have thrown the ball to the second-baseman for the tag, but he understood the pitcher's intentions and he too intentionally threw the ball high and far over the third-baseman's head. Shay ran toward third base deliriously as the runners ahead of him circled the bases toward home.

All were screaming, "Shay, Shay, Shay, all the Way Shay"

Shay reached third base, the opposing shortstop ran to help him and turned him in the direction of third base, and shouted, "Run to third! Shay, run to third" As Shay rounded third, the boys from both teams and those watching were on their feet were screaming, "Shay, run home! Shay ran to home, stepped on the plate, and was cheered as the hero who hit the "grand slam" and won the game for his team.

That day, said the father softly with tears now rolling down his face, the boys from both teams helped bring a piece of true love and humanity into this world.

Shay didn't make it to another summer and died that winter, having never forgotten being the hero and making his Father so happy and coming home and seeing his Mother tearfully embrace her little hero of the day!

I got this via an email of a Buddhist group. I felt it to my heart, i hope u also feel it.
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Thursday, March 09, 2006

Scripture Inspirations

In name of the Most Merciful and the Most Compassionate.

By the Sun and its glorious splendour.
And the moon when it follows the sun.
And the day when it reveals it.
And the night when it draws a veil over it.

And by the heaven and Him Who made it,
And the earth and Him Who extended it,

And the soul and Him Who made it perfect,
Then He inspired it with conscience of what is right and wrong for it;

He will indeed be successful who purifies the soul,
And he will indeed fail who corrupts it.

The Last Testament : THE QURAN
Chapter 91.Ash Shams.(The Sun)
verses 01-10

Click here to listen to this magical, beautiful Quran in arabic. The Quran was inspired in Arabic language and thus its true beauty can only be captured when heard or read in the original.

When people time and time asked him for miracles, the Last Messenger of God, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) didn't want to show any miracles. Time and time he pointed that it is the Quran: The Inspired Message of God is the best of miracles to mankind that he is leaving behind. And it is said, that Quran has all the miracles in it. Merely listening to its magical words can transform one's heart and soul.

The Prophet knew magic like miracles is not the need of mankind. Jesus (peace be upon him) showed numerous miracles, but his own people whole heartedly denied him, humiliated him, tried to crucify him. Thus a miracle like that of the Quran remains to the mankind through the Last Messenger by the Will of God.

Read more here for the mircales of Quran:
:: Quranic miracle and modern science
:: Mathematical miracle of the Quran
:: Great science in Quran
::Quran Miracle encyclopedia
:: Miracle in Quran

Listen to more beautiful recitations of the Quran.
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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

There is only One Religion

In Ten Sufi Thoughts by Sufi Inayat khan, he expresses that there is only one religion. Infact all the mystics believe so. Thats why they readily understand the inner reality and truths in all faiths.

In Ten Sufi Thoughts we find,
1) There is one God, the Eternal, the Only Being; none else exists save God.

2) There is one Master, the Guiding Spirit of all souls, who constantly leads all followers towards the light.

3) There is one Holy Book, the sacred manuscript of nature, which truly enlightens all readers.

4) There is one Religion, the unswerving progress in the right direction towards the ideal, which fulfils the life's purpose of every soul.

Now, while i was reading the Final Testament - The Holy Quran, it is also affirmed there. Significantly it is mentioned in the chapter titled, Al-Mumenoon (meaing The Believers). God mentions,

And lo! this your religion is one religion and I am your Lord, so keep your duty unto Me.

But mankind have broken their religion among them into sects, each group rejoicing in its tenets. (The Quran, chapter 23, verse 52, 53)

Credit: The Sufi Message of Hazrat Inayat Khan Pin It Now!

Iris : Goo Goo Dolls

Click here to listen to this lovely song.

And I’d give up forever to touch you
’Cause I know that you feel me somehow
You’re the closest to heaven that I’ll ever be
And I don’t wanna go home right now

And all I can taste is this moment
And all I can breathe is your life
And sooner or later it’s over
I just don’t wanna miss you tonight

And I don’t want the world to see me
’Cause I don’t think that they’d understand
When everything’s made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

And you can’t fight the tears that ain’t coming
Or the moment of truth in your lies
When everything feels like the movies
And you bleed just to know you’re alive

And I don't want the world to see me
'Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

And I don’t want the world to see me
’Cause I don’t think that they’d understand
When everything’s made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

And I don’t want the world to see me
’Cause I don’t think that they’d understand
When everything’s made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am
I just want you to know who I am
I just want you to know who I am
I just want you to know who I am

[ one of my most favorite song of all time ]

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Music for your soul

Thanks to online sites, now you can listen to wonderful indian classical musics, sufi songs and beautiful instrumentals. I'm a big fan of Indian classicals and Instrumentals. I love one particular site: Music India Online which helps me listen musics online totally free. Its a really good site, cause otherwise i would be bankrupt by now if tried to buy those classical cds from store.

The beautiful thing about indian instruments is that of its abstractness. Your mind and soul can put different interpretation on it and can easily flow with it.

Here I have compiled a list of few inspiring albums i love most. Once u go to the particular album, select the track and click on 'Play Selected Songs'. (use internet explorer to listen to the songs, other browser may cause problem)

Sarangi : Sarangi is a lovely instrument. It has a very deep spiritual appeal in it which i really love. The sound complement the divine sadness of the heart and its longing. Click here to listen Sultan Khan's play of Sarangi.

Ustad Amjad Ali's Sarod : Sarod is another fantastic instrument. One of my all time favorite. It is Ustad Amjad Ali who once famously said, "Shwar e Ishwar hae", "Music is the Manifestation of the Absolute". Here are some of his beautiful albums.
..Beyond the sky
..Bagheswari 1994
..First Lp
..Classical 1
..Raag Yaman
..Raag Desh

Flute: Pandit Hariprashad is considered the most celebrated and talented flutist in modern India. click here to get a list of his albums you can hear online. Some of the tunes are so powerful, if you hear them at right tune of mind, tears may overflow without bound. Hariprahad's albums are here.

Sitar: Pandit Ravi Shankar and Sitar is almost synonymous for those who know indian classical music. He is another man of great talent. He even performed in the west and fusionized indian classical with western classical. West meest East is one of his famous iconic album of such fusion work. His other albums are:
.Classical Gold
.Full circle Carnegie hall
.A Rough guide to Ravi Shankar
.Potrait of Genius
.Music by Ravi Shankar

Santoor is another beautiful instrument. Check Shiv Kumar's playing of Santoor here. Try this album as well, When Time Stood Still.

It is said that according to astrological signs, to different people different sounds make special appeal. For example for some piano, flute or violin or for other saxophone brings out the perfect harmony of the soul. So try to figure out which instrument is best for me. Here is a list for indian classical instruments that you can hear.

To try out different classical indian instrument, visit this page. There are a lot of artists enlisted on the page. click on them to listen. Let me know in the comment section what kind of instrument turns you on. i will try to find them for you if possible.
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Einstein's thought on Religion and God

Albert Einstein was a Pantheist and tried throughout his life to understand scientifically the Unity of Reality. He never accepted the uncertainty of Quantum Theory and famously said, "God does not play dice."

Some inspiring quotes from Einstein:

"A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, of the manifestations of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty - it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute the truly religious attitude; in this sense, and in this alone, I am a deeply religious man." (Albert Einstein)

"I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it." (Albert Einstein, 1954)

"I believe in Spinoza's God who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with the fates and actions of human beings." (Albert Einstein)

"The most beautiful and most profound experience is the sensation of the mystical. It is the sower of all true science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead. To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their primitive forms - this knowledge, this feeling is at the center of true religiousness." (Albert Einstein)

Credit ::

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Cardinal virtues of self

Family of four
Originally uploaded by Ani_pics.
There are four cardinal virtues of the individual self:
(i) refraining from asking in the state of poverty;
(ii) showing the attitude of being well-fed when feeling hungry;
(iii) maintaining a cheerfulness in the time of sorrow; and
(iv) befriending the enemy.

Sayings of Khwaja Mu'inuddin Hasan Chishti (blessings be with him)
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Monday, March 06, 2006

Wisdom from Bhagavad Gita

The Meditator
Originally uploaded by Mystic Lens.
Arjuna inquired: Which is considered to be more perfect, those who are properly engaged in Your devotional service, or those who worship the impersonal Brahman, the unmanifested?

The Blessed Lord said: He whose mind is fixed on My personal form, always engaged in worshiping Me with great and transcendental faith, is considered by Me to be most perfect.

But those who fully worship the unmanifested, that which lies beyond the perception of the senses, the all-pervading, inconceivable, fixed and immovable--the impersonal conception of the Absolute Truth--by controlling the various senses and being equally disposed to everyone, such persons, engaged in the welfare of all, at last achieve Me.

For those whose minds are attached to the unmanifested, impersonal feature of the Supreme, advancement is very troublesome. To make progress in that discipline is always difficult for those who are embodied.

For one who worships Me, giving up all his activities unto Me and being devoted to Me without deviation, engaged in devotional service and always meditating upon Me, who has fixed his mind upon Me, O son of Prtha, for him I am the swift deliverer from the ocean of birth and death.

Just fix your mind upon Me, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and engage all your intelligence in Me. Thus you will live in Me always, without a doubt.

My dear Arjuna, O winner of wealth, if you cannot fix your mind upon Me without deviation, then follow the regulated principles of bhakti-yoga (the devotional practices). In this way you will develop a desire to attain to Me.

If you cannot practice the regulations of bhakti-yoga, then just try to work for Me, because by working for Me you will come to the perfect stage.

If, however, you are unable to work in this consciousness, then try to act giving up all results of your work and try to be self-situated.

If you cannot take to this practice, then engage yourself in the cultivation of knowledge. Better than knowledge, however, is meditation, and better than meditation is renunciation of the fruits of action, for by such renunciation one can attain peace of mind.


Also read these beautiful posts relating to Gita from my beloved friend Mark Walter :: Its all the same and also a post on Bhagavad Gita Pin It Now!

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Hinduism in a holy nutshell

To Mystics (Sufis) all faiths have inner truth in it, all faiths are sacred. That includes Hinduism. Sufis who strongly believe in Oneness of God, how do they appreciate Hinduism which apparently talks about many gods? Thats why many orthodox religious people find it surprising! Well, basically that surprise comes because most of us (so called non-hindus) have very negative understanding of Hinduism (thinking it as polytheism is the main problem, whereas Hinduism is basically a montheistic faith, believing in One Supreme God). Interestingly Hinduism is a very important philosophy in terms of spiritual understanding and the understanding of God. As one of the most ancient philosophy and religion it holds great teachings for mankind.

If we go to the roots of Hinduism we can see the Unity of God is also spoken. The sages of Hinduism at different ages did acknowledge the Unity of God in the sacred writings. When i was reading Yann Martel's Life of Pi, i came across this beautiful writing where he describe Hinduism in a nice way. I would like to post it here.

"... There is Brahman, the World Soul, the sustaining frame upon which woven, warp and weft, the cloth of being, with all its decorative elements of space and time. There is Brahman nirguna, without qualities, which lies beyond understanding, beyond description, beyond approach; with our poor words we sew a suit for it - One, Truth, Unity, Absolute, Ultimate Reality, Ground of Being and try to make it fit, but Brahman nirguna always bursts the seams. We are left speechless.

But there is also Brahman saguna, with qualities ... Brahman saguna is Brahman made manifest to our limited senses ... everything has a trace of divine in it. The truth of life is that Brahman is no different from atman, the spiritual force within us, what you might call the soul.

The individual soul touches upon the world soul like a well reaches for the water table. That which sustains the universe beyond thoughts and language, and that which is at the core of us and struggles for expression, the infinite within the finite.

How Brahman and atman relate precisely? ... atman seeks to realize Brahman, to be united with the Absolute, and it travels in this life on a pilgrimage where it is born and dies, and is born and dies again, and again, and again, until it manages to shed the sheaths that imprison it here below.

The paths to liberation are numerous, but the bank along the way is always the same, the bank of Karma, where the liberation account of each of us is credite or debited depending on our actions.

This, in a holy nutshell, is Hinduism."

:: Related Posts : I'm a Hindu ...
:: Hinduism and four path of union with God

Keyword: Hindu, Hinduism, Comparative Religion, Life of Pi.
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Friday, March 03, 2006

Have childlike faith

baby yoga
Originally uploaded by
Believe in God with childlike faith; for simplicity with intelligence is the sign of the Holy Ones.

:: Bowl of Saki, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Sufi Inayat Khan:

The question arises: what is the manner of opening the heart? The way to it is a natural life, the life of the child, smiling with the smiling one, praying with the praying one, ready to learn from everyone, ready to love. The child has enmity against no one, he has no hatred, no malice, his heart is open. It is in the child that you can see the smiles of angels; he can see through life.

When the grown-up person is made ready, when he has acquired the attributes of the child, then he creates heaven within himself, he understands. The child with his innocence does not understand, but when a man with understanding develops the childlike loving tendency, the purity of heart of the child with the desire to be friendly to all -- that is the opening of the heart, and it is by that blessing that he can receive all the privileges of human life.

... truth is simple. The more simple you are and the more you seek for simplicity, the nearer you come to truth.

Credit: Sufi Message of Inayat Khan Pin It Now!

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Mysteries of Touch

Was it a dream?
No. it was more more than a dream.

In such a dream you came
on the shore of the ocean we met.

Then you asked me,
the most beautiful question,
'Can I hug you?'

I opened my arms to embrace you.
Time stopped, the universe froze.
The stars were jealous.
For eternity we embraced.

And the heaven came down between us.
I wished the night never pass.
And i knew you wished the same.

Then today contemplating
i excalim, O my Lord
What magic You have created in the touch of two souls!

What hidden message you hide in touch?
I beg, teach me the magic,
teach me the mysteries, O my Beloved.

(c) MyticSaint, Singapore. Pin It Now!

Wisdom of Detachment

Professor Taggart
Originally uploaded by Fack to Bront.
Do Not Run Away; Let Go.

Do Not Seek,
For It Will Come
When Least Expected.

Practice the Art of Detachment.
Let Your Thoughts and Emotions Pass,
Like the Shadow of a Bird Flying
Over the Water.

Go With, Not Against, Your Nature.

:: Credit:
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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

More resources on rethinking vegetarianism

For last few posts i have been posting some resources on vegetarianism. I'm doing some research on my own and at the same time trying vegetarian food at some meals. I'm not fully vegetarian. But i wish to be a semi-vegetarian. I think we consume un-necessarily too much chicken, meat and other flesh. Our body doesn't need so much protein and its only causing ecological imbalance to our planet. Consumption of such high protein is also putting pressure to our body mechanism and cause it to age quickly.

As part of my research on vegetarianism, i'm posting my last post on this issue. Here are some good site links to explore. They poses some good view point from Islamic, Christian and Jewish perspective on the issue.

:: Was Jesus (peace be upon him) a vegetarian?

:: Was the Last Supper Vegetarian?


:: Islamic fatwas (religious law or jurisprudence) on vegetarianism

:: A Jewish view on Vegetarianism

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Vegetarianism : A comparative world religion perspective2

Hindus believe that food shapes the personality, mood and mind. They believe that meat promotes aggressiveness and a mental state of turmoil known as "rajas". On the other hand, a vegetarian diet is considered to promote sattwic qualities, calm the mind, and essential for spiritual progress. They also believe that animals have souls and killing animals have karmic repercussions that are bound to be reaped later by oneself. Most of the secular motivations for vegetarianism such as ethical considerations and nutrition apply to Hindu motivations as well.

Orthodox Hindus, abstain from consuming anything gained at the expense of an animal's suffering, the reason why many abstain from eating eggs, and follow a Lacto vegetarian diet. The milk of cows, buffalo, and goats as well as dairy products (other than cheese containing rennet) are acceptable, as milk is traditionally given willingly. Leather from animals who have died of natural causes is acceptable for some Hindus. The diet of the orthodox Hindu excludes animal products (apart from milk products), alcohol, the rajasic foods - onions and garlic, as well as mushrooms, which are a form of fungus.

The Indian cuisine and diet is primarily vegetarian and most Hindus are semi-vegetarians, refraining from beef and eating meat/seafood only occasionally. Most non-vegetarian practising Hindus maintain a vegetarian diet on religious days.

The first lay precept in Buddhism prohibits killing. Many see this as implying that Buddhists should not eat the meat of animals. However, this is not necessarily the case. The Buddha made distinction between killing an animal and consumption of meat, stressing that it is immoral conduct that makes one impure, not the food one eats. In one of the Pali sutras belonging to the Theravada lineage of Buddhism, the Buddha says that vegetarianism is preferable, but as monks in ancient India were expected to receive all of their food by begging they had little or no control over their diet.

However, since vegetarianism was a norm in ancient India, it would have been extremely rare that the monk be offered meat. The Buddha did not wish to lay an extra burden on his lay followers by demanding that the food should be vegetarian, and there was no general rule requiring monks to refrain from eating meat. At one point the Buddha specifically refused to institute vegetarianism, and the Pali Canon records the Buddha himself eating meat on several occasions. There were, however, rules prohibiting certain types of meat, such as human, leopard or elephant. Monks are also prohibited from consuming meat if they witnessed the animal's death or know it was killed specifically for them. This rule was not applied to commercial purchase of meat in the case of a general who sent a servant to purchase meat specifically to feed the Buddha. Therefore, eating commercially purchased meat is not prohibited.

On the other hand, the Buddha in certain Mahayana sutras strongly denounces the eating of meat. In the Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra, the Buddha states that "the eating of meat extinguishes the seed of great compassion", adding that all and every kind of meat and fish consumption (even of animals already found dead) is prohibited by him. The Buddha also predicts in this sutra that later monks will "hold spurious writings to be the authentic Dharma" and will concoct their own sutras and mendaciously claim that the Buddha allows the eating of meat, whereas in fact (he says) he does not. A long passage in the Lankavatara Sutra shows the Buddha weighing strongly in favor of vegetarianism, since the eating of the flesh of fellow sentient beings is said by him to be incompatible with the compassion a Bodhisattva should strive to cultivate. Several other Mahayana sutras also emphatically prohibit the consumption of meat.

A solution to this problem arose when monks from the Indian sphere of influence migrated to China, as of the year 65 CE. There they met followers who provided them with money instead of food. From those days onwards Chinese monastics, and others who came to inhabit northern countries, cultivated their own vegetable plots and bought everything else they needed in terms of food in the market.

In the modern Buddhist world, attitudes toward vegetarianism vary by location. In China and Vietnam, monks typically eat no meat (and with other restrictions as well – see Buddhist cuisine). In Japan or Korea some schools do not eat meat, while most do. Theravadins in Sri Lanka and South-east Asia do not practice vegetarianism. All Buddhists however, including monks, are allowed to practice vegetarianism if they wish to do so.

In Chinese societies, "simple eating" refers to a particular restricted diet associated with Taoist monks, and sometimes practiced by members of the general population during Taoist festivals. It is referred to by the English word "vegetarian"; however, though it rejects meat, eggs and milk, this diet does include oysters and oyster products.

Bahai Faith

The Bahá'í Faith prefers a vegetarian diet, although it is not required. Furthermore, Bahá'ís believe "Fruits and grains" will be the foods of the future and the time will come when meat will no longer be eaten.

In Sikhism, only vegetarian food is served during religious occasions, but Sikhs are not bound to be meat-free.

Credit : Wikipedia
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Wisdom of Sufi Inayat Khan

Do not fear God, but consciously regard His pleasure and displeasure.

Bowl of Saki, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

The religion of the Sufi is the religion of the heart. The principal moral of the Sufi is to consider the heart of others, so that in the pleasure and displeasure of his fellow-man he sees the pleasure and displeasure of God.

~~~ "Complete Works, Original Texts, Feb 26, 1924", by Hazrat Inayat Khan

There are four paths or stages that lead a person to spiritual knowledge, from the limited to the unlimited.

The first stage is Shariat (Law of Religion). This is where the God-ideal is impressed upon mankind as authority, as fear of God. This really means conscientiousness, not fear as is usually thought. If we love, we do not wish to displease; love does not force us to act, but it asks us to be conscientious and take care not to cause the least disharmony with the one whose happiness we want. ...

This stage of Shariat is that in which a person asks himself what will please Him, or displease Him. He learns his religion from his parents, from his friends. A good action pleases, a bad action displeases, and pride displeases most; he learns everything very easily by seeing what displeases another. How easy it is; and yet they still go to a clergyman or to a priest, to ask what pleases God. And all the time it is just what pleases man that pleases God, and therefore if we please all around us, we please God; if we displease them, we displease God. A man who has attained to this stage realizes what reward comes to him when he pleases the world, and what happens when he does not.

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