India trip and ready to die at home

Fatima and Moineddin, sitting on the steps of the shed behind The Garden of Inayat in Novato, California, circa 1969.

The tour of mostly San Francisco Sufis through Turkey, Pakistan, India and Egypt is in progress. One of Fatima’s letters from Anandashram follows below (see February 9, 1979). While at home, Moineddin, still on dialysis, writes openly about his readiness to die (see March 25, 1979).

Mansur’s letter of January 22, 1979, which crossed in the mail with this one by Moineddin, reported to Moineddin, “For your information, my program [of seminars and workshops] to date is as follows: Feb 23-24 Rochester, New York, March 10-11 Bloomington, Indiana, March 31-April 1 Arlington & San Antonio, Texas, April 7-10 World Symposium, Toronto, Canada, April 20-22 Mississippi, April 28-29, Madison, Wisconsin.”


January 23, 1979

Dear Mansur,

As-salaam Aleikhum! Received your letter written the day after Murshid’s URS, with the glowing article by the fellow who attended your workshop in Madison. The Bay Area celebration of the URS was held in San Francisco this year with Wali Ali as master of ceremonies—a splendid affair with radiant hearts and smiling foreheads (sounds like one of the Heavens in Saladin), and “Dance to Glory” showing once again just who it was who shared his LIFE in our midst the last three years of his life.

Joe Miller, Murshida Vera and Frida Waterhouse all spoke lovingly. And I was particularly gladdened to see so many of Shahabuddin’s mureeds present, most of whom came up to me and introduced themselves. I felt especially close to Suriya; Shahabuddin himself was in Atlanta.

The pilgrimage through Turkey, Pakistan, India and Egypt continues to make its way from saint to saint, from place to place. Fatima writes often, and Vasheest sent a beautiful letter yesterday; the group has met and sung with Skeikh Mussafereddin of the Helveti, and with Sheikh Suleyman Dede of the Mevlevi. And in today’s mail I got Fatima’s first letter from Pakistan. She says Shemseddin Ahmed is such a fine man; he has actually met both Inayat Khan and Rabia Martin. And he had many stories of Murshid to share with the group. At Shemseddin Ahmed’s suggestion, the group plans to extend their return journey so that they can visit Mian Mir’s tomb and other persons and places connected with Murshid’s travels. Tomorrow they are due to arrive at Anandashram.

Batin means hidden; the other side of that divine coin is Zahir, the manifest. Manas-ahankara means ego-mind. The Saladin glossary gives the following definitions: “Feringhis—(Arabic) ‘Franks’. More generally, western Christians.” And “Kafir—(Arabic) ‘Infidel’ or ‘Unbeliever’.” The common interpretation of kafir-feringhi is ‘unbelieving foreigner.’

“In that day the sun shall rise in the West, and all men seeing shall believe.” As far as I know this is from Hadith. To me, its relation to Murshid and his disciples and his work is practically literal—especially if you accept the words, “For I am the first one born in the West to have received the Divine Message, and believe to have representatives in all the purity and goodness of which Allah is capable, and which will now be presumed done forever”—from Murshid’s last letter to Sufi Barkat Ali.

If Murshid could quote Christ’s ‘I am the vine, and ye are the branches thereof’, he could also chime in with Hazrat Inayat Khan’s sense of the Sangathas and say, ‘I am the sun, and ye are the rays thereof.’ That is why the Ruhaniat logo has a sun behind the Sufi Symbol.

Enough of words. Just love now… and blessings…