Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan

Religion a lesson
The unity of religious ideals
Part II, Book 1, chapter VI
(An address given during a service of Universal Worship, not dated)
Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan


What is religion? Religion is a lesson, a lesson which teaches the manner of living aright and reaching the object for which we are born. This religion has come time after time through those who have brought the Message of God to the world. Those who have come with this Message of religion have given it in different forms in accordance with the evolution of the people at that particular time, but the religion was one and the same. There never has been any other religion than one, for God is One, truth is One, and so religion is One. If there is any difference it is the difference of the form, not of the soul. It is the same water, the pure water, filled in several pitchers. One pitcher made in India, the other in China, an other in Arabia, and an other perhaps in the Western world. It is like a stream which comes through the fountain and falls in various streams, but it is one and the same stream.

The real understanding of religion is not in disputing over the diversity of the form. The true religion is in recognizing that One Life in all. On the altar of the Universal Worship there are different candles, each named after a different Teacher and religion, but it is one and the same light.

What does this service teach us? This service teaches us that there is One Light and different lamps. It is not the lamps that should be taken first to the mind. It is the One Light that should be taken to heart.

It is this religion of unification which Jesus Christ came to teach. The teaching of Moses and the efforts of Muhammad were all towards this object; all that Buddha has taught, all that Krishna has said, all sums up in one idea: that there is One Light that is the divine Light, and it is the guidance that comes from that Light that becomes the path for humanity to tread upon.

The Sufi Message is the re-echo of the same divine Message which has always come and will always enlighten humanity.




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