The Pir's Talk. 20th Sept. 2018 (updated)
When a seeker commits to join a spiritual path he or she becomes an initiate.
All spiritual paths require the initiates to engage in service directed by their teacher, in the Sufi way this is called wazifeh. This is part of the initiate’s undertaking once they become initiates on the spiritual path. This undertaking of the service will been assigned to the initiate by the Pir or his or her designated person. This could be required in the Centre, the Ghaneghah or outside in the community, recommended by the Pir where it is appropriate.
The service is part of ones meditation work and means participating, and this will enhance the progress of the initiate.
Neither the Beloved nor the teacher need the service of the initiate, but this brings out the unevenness in ones attitude and sincerity towards the Path. This will give the initiate an opportunity to identify their sincerity and attitude towards the Path and hence, if they wish, to deal with them.
The countless benefits, which initiates gain from Service is beyond the scope of this talk. This is one way to measure the degree of devotion and commitment of each individual initiate. Obviously if the initiate is truly committed, they will try to prioritise the service within their lifestyle. This may require some changes to ones lifestyle.
However, knowing human nature and the power of reasoning, it can sometimes have the tendency to delude oneself.
An initiate can use all the reasoning to avoid carrying out the service and remain content. Furthermore the initiate can use reasoning in order to justify to the teacher and usually the teacher would not comment on this, as he knows the initiate is merely trying to justify it, not realising that this is being seen as an excuse to shoulder out from their own responsibility towards their soul.
One of the teacher’s job is to watch and monitor the initiates progress, which depend on his or her commitment. If an initiate is continuously using reasoning as an excuse and do not commit themselves seriously, then the teacher has to respond accordingly. Ultimately his job is to respect the free will of the initiate, even though the initiate uses his or her free will to delude themselves in spite of the teachers directions.
The consequence would be that the teacher slowly distances him or herself away from this type of initiate, and concentrate on the more devoted initiates, who are hungry enough to make the effort to progress.
One example is when a teacher invites initiates to attend an event or retrieval; some initiates may decline to attend because they find other things, which they consider more important than attending the spiritual activities that has been organised by the teacher for their benefit. It is obvious that these initiates are not committed enough to progress.
No teacher or Pir would put a hard condition on any initiate for any reason, but they need to have a way to measure the commitment and to teach the initiate that the commitment has to be matched by their action toward what they have undertaken on the Path. It is not up to the teacher to keep chasing the initiate, otherwise the path just becomes a religion. Hence this caliber of initiate can be considered to be just a seeker, and they have in effect evoked the initiation, but they are too deluded to admit it.
The Pir's Talk. 13th Sept. 2018
If you believe that you are part of something bigger than this mortal body, then you can be classified as a seeker.
The main criteria to be a true seeker is to identify your conditioning and preconceptions, to deal with them and to put them aside. Dealing with one's own conditioning and preconception is not an easy task, because we are not totally aware of them. If you were to ask two people from different cultures their opinion on the same subject, each may see it differently, based on their own personal and cultural experience. However, both will believe that they are totally right.
The Pir’s Talk. 16th Aug. 2018
The union or unity in spiritual terms cannot be explained easily, it is necessary to have a worldly comparison in order to understand it better.
We were all in union with God before, but once we entered the form of human being, our reasoning began to question that unity. We still want it, but it doesn’t seem achievable because our reasoning is continuously blocking it.
However, there is a purpose for this; God has put the seeking of the unity in our heart and He has put the reasoning in our head, in order for us to learn, and, as a result - to have the experience of reaching toward the unity. It may be a struggle to overcome the reasoning, but the outcome would be positive.
To use a worldly comparison, we can look at the phenomena of music; each note has a different vibration, a different sound, but when they are brought together, they produce beautiful music. This is a good example to show us the value of differences and how they can work together to become something beautiful and nourishing. There are high notes, low notes, soft notes, sharp notes; on their own they are just a note, but put together in harmony they become music.
A bit like human beings; we each have our own little world, our own thought, our own reasoning, and when we focus on these differences and contrasts within us and among us, then conflict and disaster happens. If we align and harmonise the differences, then peace and calmness will flourish.
From a spiritual point of view, we need to harmonise ourselves and eradicate these differences, we need to polish those rough surfaces, or we cannot become harmonious in our own individual life, never mind about our spiritual life. Unlike the musical notes, we human beings have been given free will to work on our differences with wisdom and to live in harmony.
The Pir’s Talk. 9th August 2018
APPLYING SPIRITUALITY IN DAILY LIFE
A true spiritual person feel urged to give more than they take.
For example, someone working in a job for an employer may work more hours than they are paid for, not because the employer requires it, but because the spiritual person chooses to do so. Even if the superior tells them not to work the extra hours because they will not be paid for overtime, their reply will be that they are not looking to get paid for those hours, they chose to do the extra hours to finish a project or to get a job done.
If we try to be ‘clever’ and cheat someone else for more than we are due, even if that person doesn’t realise it, God and our own consciousness know what we do.
We will be taken to account when the time comes. Living with integrity and being a ‘giver’ rather than a ‘taker’ is what spirituality is about. The spiritual person knows that the long-term reward for giving is so infinitely more than the short-term gain of taking.
Taking advantage of others means that our ‘debt’ increases. The aim of a spiritual person is not to owe anything to anyone on the day of reckoning, if he/she can.