A while back I came across a post on an Ismaili blog I follow. I enjoy studying Islam and Sufism. Almost no one here studies Islam except those practicing and even they don’t usually study their own religion any better than Christians typically do. And Sufism shares many parallels with Hinduism and my path of Sahaj Marg / Heartfulness.
If you click here you’ll be taken to the blog I’m talking about and to a post that examines “Mi’raj” – the night of the spiritual ascension of the prophet Mohammad. The first thing a reader comes to is a quote from an Imam stating that the ascension to be discussed is attainable by all who actively aspire to it, and not just a “chosen one.” This is important. In so many spiritual paths (which end up being more religious than spiritual) true higher attainment is seemingly reserved for those who are God’s favorites or God’s “begotten.”
I’ll allow that most paths have someone to help show the way. In reality, this shouldn’t be necessary but often feels necessary because people are either convinced that they are clueless, convinced that they are incompetent, or might just be lazy (among other potential reasons). My path of Heartfulness / Sahaj Marg has its own “tirthankar” – and has had. In the modern era, we’re on our fourth in succession. Lalaji, then Babuji, then Chariji, and currently Daaji. Each has served our path in unique and invaluable ways and the current one, Daaji, is really taking us in new directions. He’s placing so much emphasis on the Master or Guru within. When I went to see him in New Jersey around the end of the June, one of the very first things he shared with those gathered was that problems begin when we seek the Guru outside ourselves. #SatDat #Truth
To go back to the Ismaili post I mentioned, there’s a story mentioned wherein the prophet rides a winged horse from one place to another. The Ismailis understand this to be symbolic of something quite deeper than the story initially conveys. I’m with them on this – I have serious doubts about whether winged horses ever existed on this planet, let alone that the prophet of Islam ever rode one from Makkah to Jerusalem.
This Ismaili post uses a lot of Arabic religious and spiritual vocab which I’m not familiar with. Many of them I could probably render in Sanskrit here but I won’t. You would be better and more efficiently served to just check out the post yourself. I wanted to draw attention to this because this post does a fine job at paralleling what Hindus already know and have talked about ages before Islam surfaced on the planet – realization of Absolute Reality. I dare say that you can even skip around – pick a random place and just start reading and then jump to another place – you’ll have little difficulty connecting the dots. Give it a look over and see what you think.
Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha | Aum Shanti