Towards the One, the Perfection of Love, Harmony, and Beauty, the Only Being, United with all the Illuminated Souls, Who form the Embodiment of the Master, the Spirit of Guidance.
–The Sufi Invocation of Inayat Khan
You Daoli ma? (Does it make sense?) Inayat Khan was the Chistia lineage Sufi Master who first transmitted orthodox Sufism to the West. I got involved with his lineage in America, in the second generation from Inayat Khan, more because of my inherent preference for everything orthodox than because of any pre-existing condition with Sufism, and also because I had karma with his successor but one, Murshida Ivy Oenita Duce, which dated back to a life we spent together in China.
(click image to enlarge) Inayat Kahn, according to Maitreya Meher, was a 5th plane saint (wali). The 5th plane is the first realm that is encountered by the pilgrim on the Path after the dreadful transition between the 4th and 5th planes (i.e. the passage from the Subtle World, the Realm of Energy to the Mental World, the Realm of Mind, which are designated the Sambhogakaya and the Dharmakaya in traditional Buddhism, where said transition is usually called something like “Passing the Gate of Nonretrogression.”) On arrival in the 5th plane, the pilgrim is safe and can help others if that is the Buddha’s will for him. But many such souls, particularly exhausted karmayogins, simply never have another interaction with this world of five pollutions and stinging red dust for the rest of their careers as individuated souls, because it is not God’s (the Buddha’s) intention to cause suffering to beings, and spiritually advanced beings in particular. But some are commanded by God to regain consciousness of the gross world to enact God’s purposes therein, and are given special sanskaras (mental and subtle impressions) which enable them to so function. Inayat Kahn was such an individual, as was his successor Murshida Duce, her Murshida from Inayat Kahn Rabia Martin, my root Guru Sri Sri Sri Vir Singh (Bhau, Bhauji) Kalchuri, and Meher Baba’s sister Manija Sheriar Irani, just to name a few.
The summation of such individuals incarnated at any given time is what Meher Baba meant by “The Spiritual Hierarchy,” and what Inayat Kahn meant by “all the Illuminated Souls” in the above quote. Wali such as Inayat Kahn, in particular, are Masters of Illuminated Mind, and they are structurally incapable of any verbal formulation which is not rigorously and dharmically true. But my interest in this quote at the moment is not so much truth as timeliness. There is an insight here into the relationship between the philosophical ideals and theological concepts of Unity, Diversity, and Harmony to which I would draw attention, for the betterment of all sentient beings in general, and the human population of this planet at the moment in particular.
Inayat Kahn was a musician by trade, and I think that is what brings him to mind when I consider this matter of Unity, Diversity and Harmony. The strings on a musical instrument, whether Inayat Kahn’s vina or my ukulele, must necessarily have clearly differentiated tones. If the strings are tuned too close, the instrument becomes muddy, and if you even try to tune two strings to the same tone, chaos is the instantaneous result. The strings will then ring slightly apart, simply because that is the nature of strings, and those two strings will then beat against each other as their nearly identical sine waves go rythmically in and out of phase, with the result that the whole instrument simply becomes dissonant and goes rapidly out of tune. (This dynamic can cause poorly-designed bridges to develop harmonic wave motion which literally tears them apart in comparatively mild winds.). Double strings across the whole instrument prevent this however, becuase then all the secondary strings get into a harem with each other, and the result is quite rich. I’m sure that advanced bridge design also employs this principle. ((Singing bridges are OK, but self-destructing ones really CREEP ME OUT, OK? — vshr)).
But all of those harmonic dibulations notwithstanding, like Inayat Kahn, what I definitely prefer to work with is single strings on a simple instrument (his vina, like my ukulele, was also four-stringed), and I seriously doubt that I will ever touch another stringed instrument but the soprano ukulele. This instrument was blessed by the Hawaiian noble class, the Ali’i, to be a door between the worlds, and it can project titanic power and huge sound, and it’s also very beautiful.
My instrument is almost the same size as the violin, and it actually has a lot in common with that noble instrument, for example: like like my voice, this instrument most definitely prefers the most classical of all possible keys: concert A. Her first string is actually even tuned to high A, and yet innummerable witless buffoons constantly abuse her with that absolute stark raving banality, the key of C! How dare they, please? Yes, I also am sometimes forced to descend to the key of C, but let us not make a habit of it, OK? As someone has somewhat inelegantly put it, “The masses are asses.” The key of C is not their fault as long as they keep it to themselves, but when they try to impose it on others, limits must be set and maintained! In today’s Hawaiian music scene, it’s not hard to detect the most skilled player in the jam session, it’s invariably the one who first opens in concert A. Concert A is the elephant in the room, and the key of D (4th from A) is the mynah bird on the set, who is constantly reminding you (often in the form of D7 which is just pervasive in Hawaiian music) about the elephant in the room, whether you like it or not.
Yes, there is Unity within Diversity, and the wierd dominance of Concert A is proof of that. But getting rid of Diversity, which is the real purpose, conscious or unconscious, of all organizational/political attempts to authoritatively impose Unity, does not produce either Unity or Harmony. The universal effect of all such attempts always has been and always will be utter chaos, pure and simple. Want proof? Check the news please. Or read history. Chinese history is, in fact, if you actually read it in the source, one long rigorous proof of my argument here, literally documented over a period of 5,000 years. As Mao Zedong Bodhisattva Mahasattva once put it: “Contradiction is the soul of the Universe.” Unity? Best let that sleeping dog lie, lest it take out its limitless and relentless rage by biting us all to death!
Maitreya Meher Namo Namo,