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Stay close to any sounds | sohbet is deep listening

Stay close to any sounds
that make you glad
you are alive.

in this world is
helplessly reeling.

An invisible wake
was created
when God said
to His beautiful dead lover,

Hafiz, who will understand you
if you do not explain that last line?

Well then,
I will sing it this way:

When God said to illusion,

- Hafiz, the master sufi poet and saint of 14th century

the sufis say:
there are three ways to relate to the Divine:
one is prayer,
a step up from that is meditation,
and a step up from that is sohbet *.

* what sufi mystics mean by sohbet is difficult to translate in english. simply put, it means conversation of 'a totally different nature'. its conversation between friends of spirit and heart, its deep listening and transmission of heart as well. everything in the created cosmos are also in conversation always and those with attuned ears of the inner heart are able to listen to them.

true sohbets are so powerful that it can bring much deeper realization in short space of time, than years of prayers or meditation alone. On meditation being a step up from prayer, Prophet Muhammad said, "One hour's meditation on the work of the Creator is better than seventy years of prayer." Sufi path values sohbet and thus listening deeply and directly from a sufi master / enlightened one is emphasized on the path. sohbet carry the powerful seed of what far eastern spirituality calls 'satori' or sudden enlightenment. the name and idea of ancient hindu sacred text Upanishad is also an idea of 'sohbet' as well. Upanishad means 'sitting down near' an enlightened spiritual master or guru in order to listen and to receive.

the mystery of sohbet is perhaps inside the Divine Name, As Sami: Divine is The All Hearing, The Ever Hearing.

In Tibetan Buddhist tradition, Milarepa (born, Mila Thöpaga meaning 'a joy to hear'), the most famous mysticsaint of Tibet, yogi, wanderer and much loved poet of eleventh century is often famously depicted with one hand cupped behind his ear. In Buddhist iconography he is as someone who is always listening deeply, symbolizing Milarepa's deep listening to the great voice of the cosmos, of the inner song of existence.

On the value of listening 'The Tibetan Book of the Dead' calls it Great Liberation through Hearing.

Then said Jesus, "He who has ears to hear, let him hear."
New Testament, Mark 4:9

'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says ...'
Revelation 2:7, 3:22

"It is to those who are worthy of (hearing and understanding) my mysteries that I tell my mysteries." - Jesus Christ, Gospel of Thomas

When Prophet Muhammad started his long retreats and deep contemplation in Hira, the mountain cave near Mecca, he was also entering into the preparation what would become a 23 years of Great Hearing and Listening of the Divine voice, which ultimately became the revelations of The Quran. As they descended to his inner heart, he would spontaneously recite the holy revelations, hence the name Qur'an (which means 'the recitation'). Often time, as he mentioned later that such revelation of Quran used to start with a sound which he had to listen with tremendous concentration and each time the experience was so intense that it would make him perspire even in cold desert night.

Quran, the Final Testament mentions the theme of deep listening, its relationship with inner realization and receiving grace through listening - on several places.

Only those realize who listen (truly)...
The Quran 6:36

Those who listen to the Word, and follow the best in it: those are the ones whom God has guided, and such are the gnostics.
The Quran 39:18

I have chosen thee: listen, then, to the inspiration.
(God's mystical conversation with Moses on the Holy Mountain)
The Quran 20:13

When they listen to that which hath been revealed unto the messengers, thou seest their eyes overflow with tears because of their recognition of the Truth.
The Quran 5:83

Be not like those who say, "We hear," but hear not:
The Quran 8:21

When the Qur'an is read, listen to it with deep listening, and preserve your peace: that ye may receive grace.
The Quran 7:204

In every cycle of ritual prayer (salat) practiced in Islam, as the devotee stand up from bowing position, reminds himself or herself by announcing "Sami Allah hu liman hamidah" - 'God ever listens to every spontaneous praise'. It is then followed up by saying, "Rabbana, wa lakal hamd" - 'Our Lord, and to Thee belongs all praise'.



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Technology of the Heart: Stay close to any sounds | sohbet is deep listening
Stay close to any sounds | sohbet is deep listening
Technology of the Heart
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