Topic October

Free Will and Destiny

from: Hazrat Inayat Khan -

Message Papers (Aug 2, 1923)

(see also counsellor)

You can listen to all themes here


The law of nature works in the life of an individual and in the life of the multitude more or less in the same way. When we see this law and find out its secret, we admit the truth of both the opposite doctrines, fate and free will. There is such a thing as fate and there is such a thing as free will; sometimes they clash and sometimes they work harmoniously, and sometimes one overpowers the other.

Every nation has its destiny, every race has its life designed; also every individual and every Message that has ever come to humanity. The prophets have brought the Divine Message from time to time. It took so many years for them to deliver it to the world, and so many years for it to spread after those who brought it had passed. So many years it took for the people to practice it and to get benefit out of it.

And many more years it took for the same to become corrupted, which has always caused the decline of religions. No doubt that that ended that specific cycle, and a new cycle began with the same process all over again. History repeats itself, and the wonderful thing in this that is to be noticed is that no sooner was God's Message declared, than even the nearest and dearest friends of the deliverer of that Message became his worst enemies. No doubt he at the same time appealed to the souls standing far off from him, who were drawn much closer to him than his own people, although the difficulty of the prophet remained just the same.

As Rumi says, ‘Many sympathize and become my friends, yet they know not the secret of my pain nor can they understand why they are drawn to me.’

The Sufi Message, besides its philosophical, religious and mystical aspect, is the Message, His Message Who has always sent His Messenger to the world whenever it was needed. And the fulfillment of this Message is certain, there is not the slightest doubt about it. Among us who serve this Message, if there are few or if there are many, the Message will surely spread and answer its purpose. Only when we think of the free will in which we share the part of the Creator then we realize the responsibility of our lives, that by reason of having free will we to a great extent are responsible for its fulfillment.

Besides this, now the question is what must we do in helping the Message towards fulfillment? We can do a great deal if we balance our willingness with wisdom. For it has often happened that, adversaries apart, friends with their good will and devotion may cause difficulties in the furtherance of the Cause, only by lack of prudence. Therefore, besides enthusiasm and willingness to work in the Cause, it is necessary that a wider outlook must be developed; and there is one way of developing it, and that is by forgetting the self. There is only one condition for becoming the real server and that is to forget the self, for it is the thought of the self which blocks our own path and the way of that movement the fulfillment of which will be a blessing for the whole humanity.

The deeper we think, the more we shall realize that every moment of our life, especially in the work for the world cause, is beyond price, and every next moment that follows becomes more valuable. Once this is realized, we shall not say that, ‘I will do tomorrow what can be done today,’ and we shall not say, ‘I will not do it, for there are many others who can.’ But we shall consider it our greatest privilege in life to use our life and effort to its best advantage in the service of God and humanity.


 Even the branches swing in ecstasy

when they receive Thy message.

 

Hazrat Inayat Khan: Vadan - Alankaras


(Maheboob Khan, Hazrat Inayat Khan‘s brother, has composed music to a row of aphorisms of Hazrat Inayat Khan in the middle of last century, as this ‚Every Step in Thy Path‘. Mohammed Ali Khan, Hazrat Inayat Khan’s cousin, has sung this song around the year 1956 in a concert in Zürich – here you can listen to it)


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