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Sayings of Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan

(The soul speaking with nature)

Sun-dew, why is it that every insect dies instantly when it kisses you?
–I like him so much that I devour him.
Sun-dew, where did you learn this philosophy?
–Once upon a time a voice said to me, "I am the love and I am the life, and whosoever cometh to me, I embrace him and turn him into my own being."

Celandine, what is your meaning?
–I am a little light of the earth.

Rosebud, what didst thou do all night?
–With folded hands I was praying to heaven to open my heart.

Water-lily, what do you represent by your white garb?
–The purity at the heart of this lake.

Tulip, why have you opened your lips?
–To tell you what I have learned in the silence.
What did you learn?
–To make of myself an empty cup.

Orchid, what do your petals represent?
–Graceful movements of the dance.
What does your dance express?
–The earth paying homage to heaven.

Little daisies, why do you keep so close to earth?
–Because earth is the home of all mortal beings.
Little daisies, what gospel do you preach?
–Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Little daisies, for what are you here?
–To reflect heaven on earth.
Little daisies, what is your daily duty?
–To console the hearts that are trodden upon.

Little daisies, what are you doing here in the churchyard?
–We worship God by bowing at the feet of His creatures.

Cactus, why are you fringed with thorns?
–I am the tongue of the malicious man.
Cactus, why is your stem so thorny?
–I am the hand of the evil-doer.
Cactus, why have you thorns on your leaf also?
–I am the heart of the wicked, who take pleasure in hurting others.

Beautiful gorse-bushes, what are you here for?
–We are little lanterns on your path.
But where do you get your prickly thorns from?
–Flowers from above, thorns from below.

Rose-bush, what are you, friend or foe?
–I am both, for my flowers are the caress of a friend and my thorns the sting of a foe.

Wheat-grains, why do you grow so close together?
–Unity is our strength; that is why you seek in us your life sustenance.

Palm-tree, what do your outstretched hands signify?
–I raise my hands heavenward when I pray, and then I pass the blessing on to the earth.

Pine-trees, what are you?
–We are the phantoms of sages who preferred vigil in the forest solitude to life in the world.

Pine-trees, what do your branches signify?
–Hands stretched out from heaven to bless the earth.
Pine-trees, for what are you made?
–We are temples erected for the worshippers of God in nature.
Pine-trees, tell me your life's secret.
–We are the shadows of souls on the cross, awaiting patiently the hour of their liberation.

Dry wood, why do they burn you?
–Because I no longer can bear fruit.

Thunderstorm, what gives you this emotion?
–My passion for the earth.

Full moon, where will you be going from here?
–Into a retreat.
Why do you take a retreat after fullness?
–To make myself an empty vessel in order to be filled again.

Church-bell, what do you repeat?
–The sacred Name of God, which resounds through my whole being.
Church-bell, what do you proclaim?
–I proclaim that every head which resounds like mine, spreads abroad the Message of God.
Church-bell, what makes you move?
–The Word of God.

Incense, what were you whispering at the church service?
–No prayer can reach God unless it arises from a glowing heart.

Incense, what did you preach at the church?
–He who endureth pain in the cause of others must rise from the mortal world to the spheres of immortality.
Incense, what does your perfume signify?
–My perfume is the evidence of my self-sacrifice. Incense, tell me what mortal is veiled in your nature?
–When my heart endures the test of fire, my hidden quality becomes manifest. Incense, tell me the secret of your being.
–I am the heart of the lover of God, whose deep sign rises upward, spreading its perfume all around.

Money, what do you signify?
–I am the seal of hearts; a heart once sealed by me will love no one but me.
When you leave, what becomes of your lover?
–I leave behind a mark on my lover's heart which remains always as a wound.
Money, what do you like most?
–Changing hands.
Where is your dwelling-place?
–In the heart of my worshipper.
Where do you accumulate?
–Where I am warmly welcomed.
Where do you stay?
–Where I am adored.
Money, whom do you seek?
–Him who seeks me.
Money, whom do you obey?
–Him who has risen above me; I become his slave and lie as dust at his feet.

Devil, where do you find your location?
–In doubting eyes, in a sharp tongue, in a gossiping mouth, in inquisitive ears, in idle hands, in restless feet, in a vicious body, in a crooked mind, in a bitter heart, and in a darkened soul.
Devil, how do you express yourself?
–In winking eyes, in sneering smiles, in cutting words and in false tears.

Why, what are you?
–I am the cry of the hungry mind.
Why, what do you signify?
–I am the knocker on a closed door.
Why, what do you represent?
–The owl which cannot see during the day.
Why, what is your complaint?
–The irritation of mind.
Why, what is your life condition?
–I am shut up in a dark room.
Why, how long will your captivity last?
–All night long.
Why, what are you so eagerly waiting for?
–The daybreak.
Why, you are yourself the cover over the answer you want.

Match-stick, what did you say when I struck you?