Counsellor March

Recording Angels

from: Hazrat Inayat Khan -

the Soul Whence and Whither

(see also forum)

You can listen to all themes here

There are recording angels, who take a record of our good and bad actions; and the most interesting thing is that those who keep the record of the good actions do not keep the record of the bad actions. Those who keep a record of the bad actions are other angels; and there is a further explanation given by the Prophet on this subject: that often a discussion takes place between those who keep the record of the good deeds and those who record the evil deeds.

The former do not believe in the evil deeds because they are only conscious of a human being’s goodness; they cannot believe that one who is good can be bad also. Also those who record the good points want their record to be filled and the other angels want their record to be filled, so there is a great rivalry between them. Is this not the condition which we see in human nature? There is no person living on earth of whom all say good things; and there is no person living about whom all say bad things and no one says any good; and the most interesting point for a keen observer of life is how each tries to prove his argument to be correct.

In Sufi terms these two are called the angels of Khair and of Khar, and the difference in the spelling is very small. This suggests how little difference there is between goodness and badness. As Omar Khayyam says:

A hair perhaps divides the false and true;
Yes, and a single Alif were the clue,
Could you but find it - to the treasure house,
And, peradventure, to the Master too.

The ancient belief is that immediately after a dead person is buried these two kinds of angels come to his grave with their records and dispute about him. But do we not see in human nature the same thing? People do not even wait until after death; they begin to say things about the people they know, about their friends and foes, and dispute about them even during their lifetime.

Teach me, O Lord,

the innocence of the child,

an angel on earth.


Hazrat Inayat Khan: Vadan - Alankaras

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