18 August 2021
Dear Companions on the Path,
I hope this finds you well. There hasn’t been a Zephyr newsletter for a couple of months while many of us have gone into more internal spaces. The world around us, however, continues to swirl with events from which we cannot truly separate ourselves.
COVID-19 continues to spread around the world, bringing suffering in its wake. Just as it seemed that societies were able to open up again, the Delta variant has made it clear that the pandemic is still in full effect. While there are various contrasting viewpoints about the virus, on this we can all agree: we wish and pray for the good health of our siblings all across the world, and will do our best to support each other’s well-being. Let’s stay connected in a circle of friendship spanning the globe: we are all in this together.
Alas, we have seen continuing signs of a world climate knocked off kilter. The floods in Western Europe and fires in Turkey and Greece have reminded us, if we needed a reminder, of nature’s overwhelming power, and of the need to reestablish harmony with her. As you may know, the International Board of the Inayatiyya has convened a group to look more closely at how we, as a community, can most meaningfully respond to climate change. Meanwhile, we have been responding to these disasters with concerted prayers.
Then, on August 14th, came the news of a massive earthquake in Haiti. Many lost their lives, and many more were injured. Still others lost their homes. Our heart’s prayers are with the bereaved and the homeless.
Three years ago this month, our dear and revered spiritual uncle Huzur Sayyid Ahmad Shah Chishti Mawdudi, the leader of the Chishti Order in Afghanistan and worldwide, departed to the unseen (may God sanctify his secret).
He was a gracious friend, and never missed the annual celebration of my grandfather’s Urs in Delhi. He lived with his family in Herat, a flourishing haven of mysticism and the arts in Afghanistan.
Now, as we have all seen, changes are afoot in Afghanistan.
This is my ardent prayer: By the grace of the One, may the great nation of Afghanistan ever be the nation that Huzur Sayyid Ahmad Shah personified: deeply spiritual, enamored of music and poetry, culturally rich, respectful of all faiths, and honoring of women’s freedom and leadership.
The Zephyr is a monthly newsletter of Inayatiyya, an interfaith mystical fellowship with branches worldwide. For more information on our activities, please visit inayatiyya.org