A New Year is acoming…

Dear family –

Happy 2007.

just a short note to pass on all my love and best wishes that Peace and Health and Joy be ours in the coming year.

A practice for the year:

Make the inner merger of Hazrat Inayat Khans depth, Murshid Sams breadth, and Kwan Yins heart our constant and loving companions.

See you in San Francisco in June (14-19), where we hope to walk the walk – not just talk the talk.

Yours in service to the real

hakim sauluddin

DHO 2007 in San Francisco

Walking in the Footsteps of the Teacher

Our Summer Gathering is planned for June 14 to 19th, 2007 in San Francisco.


We will follow in Murshid SAM’s, Joe & Gwin Miller’s and Frida Waterhouse’s energy flow, as we visit their “favorite” places.

  • Our base will be the Mentorgarten, with visits to as many places as we can still find open:
  • Precita Park (to pick up glass and garbage prior to our dancing),
  • Potrero Hill (where the Call to Prayer in Sun Seed was filmed),
  • The Theosophical Society and Golden Gate Park (where Joe and Gwin taught),
  • and Inshallah! The Rock of the Prophet, The Garden of Inayat, and even more.

Our goal will be to catch any remaining energy left from our teachers’ passage. Remember

Murshid Sam’s story of catching Nyogen Sanzaki’s barakka at the beach (where Senzaki san used to walk) and finding himself in the ocean.

Our gathering will have 3 sections:

  1. Our regular gathering, centered at the Mentorgarten.
  2. An Open to the Public day on Sufi Healing, at a larger location: We shall focus our attention on Prayer, Breath, Attunement, Transmutation, Protection, Creating a Sacred Space, the Sending and Receiving of Energy, Cleansing the Auric Body, Sound, Color, Visualization, Concentration, Ritual, Clearing Past Life Impressions, Amulet Making & the Power of Jewels, plus the Astrological Walks, and the Walks of the Great Healers. Etc. {Our D.H.O. leadership group will be expected to hold this public focus}
  3. A Bus Tour to the many places our teachers walked and loved. I am personally looking forward to our hanging out in the Bus and doing zikr and wazifa together.

Housing has 3 possibilities:

  1. We are securing dorm space at San Francisco State College – clean, cheap and we can have a whole floor to ourselves.
  2. Alternative hotel or motel space – you book it yourself.
  3. Crashing with friends and family.

Please let us know if you plan on using the Dorm option, as we must let them know how many we wish to reserve very soon!

Costs will be as minimal as usual And, since our staff will receive neither reimbursements nor honorarium, we should pretty much stay within our usual budget.

Since this is a HEADS UP! Notice – more details will follow soon.
For registration: Jennifer Avian

And finally, there is some great news to report on the making of Peace.

The Sufi Order has agreed to send a full delegation to our 9th Annual meeting of the Federation of the Sufi Message, right here in Charlottesville, Virginia. April 11 -15, 2007. Inshallah! We shall have representatives of all 6 manifestations of our Inayati family present.

DHO & Ruhaniat members who wish to attend, please contact Amrita

And, following in this energy flow, Devi Tide (the Kafayat for the Sufi Order) and myself , will do a joint DHO – SHO healing weekend in Kansas City – March 16 – 18, 2007.
DHO & SRI members who wish to attend, please contact Sarfaraz.

I send all my love and deepest wishes for your well being and health in this new year.

Yours in Service to the Real,
Hakim Sauluddin

Federation of the Sufi Message – 2007

Finding Unity within Diversity:
The annual meeting of the Federation of the Sufi Message returns to Charlottesville, Virginia.

APRIL 11 – 15, 2007 Wednesday dinner through Sunday lunch


Dear fellow initiates in the lineage of Hazrat Inayat Khan,

It is with great pleasure that we invite you to the eighth annual meetings of our Inayati family.

As we enter the 21st century, we encounter many of the same problems which Hazrat Inayat Khan found when he first traveled to the West.

On the one hand: There are wars which threaten to become world wide, while religious and racial enmity threaten to engulf us in sectarian hatred and violence.

On the other hand:

We have the Sufi Message of Spiritual Liberty, and our dedication and commitment to its unfoldment in the world.

The suffering world calls for the peace and understanding which Pir O Murshid Inayat Khan brought as the Sufi Message. It is our precious opportunity to make Peace within our own extended family, so that we may offer Peace to the world at large.

We are hopeful that all 6 manifestations of our Inayati family will join together. We are all needed. Please do your part to encourage all the pieces of the tapestry to come together in prayer and mutual honor.

Please remember that each order has 30 participants. Contact your order directly to secure your place.

Saul Yale Barodofsky
Co-ordinator for the Sufi Ruhaniat International
110 South Street – Charlottesville, Virginia 22902

  • Dates: April 11 – 15, 2007. Wednesday dinner through Sunday lunch.
  • Place: Camp Holiday Trails, Charlottesville, Virginia.
  • Costs: approximately $50 per day – plus housing .
  • Housing: on site (rustic) $30. Per night. There are also various local hotels at all prices levels, and there will be some guest space with locals.
  • Transportation: Plane, train and bus – all service Charlottesville. One can also rent an auto at your arrival airport.
  • International guests: we suggest that one fly into Charlottesville, Virginia from your entrance city.
  • Pick up at the Charlottesville airport (or train and bus station) can be arranged.
  • For group registration by Order, please contact: Daisy Schrock

Report: DHO at Lama – 2006

Beloved Family,

This years American DHO Gathering was at Lama Foundation, and I am happy to report that Murshid is alive and well, and Lama continues to lovingly care for his Maqbara. Alhamdulliah!

Our dream work (home work) reported many of his visitations and instructions. Ya Shakur.

Forty of us gathered together from all over the USA & Canada, and we raised $12,135.00 for Lama, of which $10,520, came from registration, and $1,615 was a direct donation towards the repair of their leaking community roof.

As part of our continued attempt to offer the original teachings of Murshid Sam, we felt it was important to reintroduce both the prayers, and the 10 Sufi Thoughts. The former were done before our morning meeting, and the later were used as a theme for the nights `homework.’

Mansur Johnson was our guest, and shared some more of his forthcoming book on Murshid SAM. Due in October 2006 from Peaceworks (thanks Saadi and Jelaluddin for taking this on).

New Mexico is experiencing it’s worst drought in 133 years, but the love and joy we experienced kept us all in such a heart centered place that few of us noticed it. In addition, Lama is greener than expected, and their new trees and plants are prospering with all the loving care they receive.

Very Special Thanks to:

  • Mansur Johnson for leading our procession up to the Maqubara.
  • Scott Aslan Sattler for the choir, and for leading Murshid Sam’s original dances at night.
  • Fadilla Bradley for leading us in the con-fraternity prayers each morning.
  • Siddiq & Sakina von Brissen for their Japanese tea classes, and for doing an all camp tea under the big dome – wonderful!
  • Elaine Sutton for being our Rabbi for Friday night Shabbas, and for her writing class.
  • Ananda Cronin for leading us in the Bon meditation that links us directly to a departed elder, for leading the woman’s circle, and for shlepping her harmonium through 27 airports so we could do sing zikr at the Maqbara.
  • Eddie Nasruddin Greenberg for a hilarious 30 minute stand up routine.
  • Noel Hale for manifesting the Heart of Hanuman.
  • Murad Finkestein for sharing his meditation experiences in the Taoist caves of China, and for leading Sufi Chi Gong.’
  • Asha Greer for holding the energy so well during tea, meditation, the woman’s circle, and for leading us into the Lama Meditation Chamber.
  • Jean Pierre for manifesting his practice of the 99 Names (or pathways).

And to all of our family who participated in the flowering of Love, Harmony & Beauty. Ya Shakur! Alhamdulliah!

We are also most pleased to announce that there were three initiations given at Lama:

Jean Pierre David is our latest Shafayette, and Eddie Nasruddin Greenberg, and Michael Endlick are now Initiators. May the Message of God Reach Far and Wide.

A few additional memories of the Lama Gathering:

  • The deep inner silence we all shared in the Lama meditation room (the old “Khiva”).
  • The loving and supportive Lama Beans who constantly blessed and
  • nurtured our work.
  • The kitchen crew who manifested delicious and nourishing food in cornucopious amounts.
  • Watching us all become children again and snuggling up for a bed-time story.

More News:

Next year we are talking about having our gathering at the Mentorgarten, and having an extended field trip to visit our historical elders favorite places – “Walking in the Footsteps of the Teacher.”

Plus, an additional day dedicated to a structured approach to the teaching of Sufi Healing. More on this soon.

This September I will return to Russia with Mujahid Havell – my 12th year. 2007 we are scheduled to be in Prague.

The Harmony Committee has finished its work, and the letters of support and regret are starting to circulate. Mashallah! It has been a long, painful and joyful process, but it feels worth all the effort. If there are any questions or comments on the letter, please feel free to write me.

And, Along these lines:

The 2007 Meeting of the Federation of the Sufi Message will be held in Charlottesville, Virginia.

April 11 -15. Mark your calendar, and pray that ALL the streams of the Sufi Message will be present and accounted for.

And, there will be a joint healing meeting of the Dervish Healing Order & the Sufi Healing Order in Kansas City – March 10, 11 & 12. Devi Tide and myself will be leading it. A landmark event.

I send you all my love and blessings and prayers for your continued health and inner peace.

Yours in Service to the Real,
Hakim Sauluddin
Jennifer Avian – our camp planner
Jude Sargent – our secretary
Jean Pierre David – our web master

DHO retreat at Lama Foundation, Taos, New Mexico, June 2006

The Dervish Healing Order serves as that aspect of the Sufi Ruhaniat which maintains and promotes the vision of health and Divine Healing as presented by Pir-O-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan. It holds the concentration for the health of the Sufi Ruhaniat on all levels. One of the tools given by Inayat Khan is the Healing Ritual. In addition, we are guided by breathing practices, healing meditations, visualizations, and a body of esoteric papers on healing from Inayat Khan, with commentaries by Murshid SAM.

The DHO is an international initiatic order. All members have demonstrated deep commitment in some aspect of healing, either toward self, or others, or both.

Membership is open to all who meet the requirements of dedication to service on the healing path, whether or not they are mureeds of the Sufi Ruhaniat.

Initiates and prospective DHO members are encouraged to attend yearly Healing Order gatherings organized with input from regional initiators and Shafayats. The Shafayats serve under the leadership of the DHO director, the Khafayat, Murshid Sauluddin, in a similar capacity to Sufi Ruhaniat Sheiks and Khalifs.

This year the meeting is at Lama Foundation, near Taos, New Mexico. See the Lama website for more information on the history and purpose of this center for retreat and for mindful living: http://www.lamafoundation.org/

Getting to Taos proved to be quite an adventure with Southwest Airlines. The first indication that something unusual was going on is that arriving at the gate at La Guardia Airport, I found out that the previous flight had been cancelled. All these poor people were now on standby for our flight to Chicago that was already very full. We finally left one hour late. In Chicago, the mayhem was even worse with the advent of a major rainstorm. This flight left after more than two hours delay. I arrived in Albuquerque, NM and went to my rental car company. I got finally on the way at 8:30PM to arrive in Taos three hours later. After a futile attempt to find something open in Taos for food since I did not have anything to eat since the toast and tea of the morning breakfast, I decided to call it a day for fasting and just drank some water. I had some dry fruit on the plane and could not bring myself to eat anything else they call snacks.

I found my way in the dark up a dirt road leading to Lama Foundation, height thousand feet above sea level, in those mountains of New Mexico, it was difficult to breathe and I felt the oxygen ramification right away. This was a moonless dark night, since I had made a printout from Lama’s website, I was able to find the entrance of the dirt road at mile 15 from Taos. When I finally arrived, it was past midnight and the whole complex was quiet and dark. I resolved to pull my sleeping bag and accommodate myself in the car until morning. When I opened my suitcase, I found all the content soaking wet. The airlines had left the entire luggage on the airport tarmac during the major storm that delayed us. Luckily the inside of the sleeping bag stayed dry. I made myself a bed in the back of the car and slept until five thirty in the morning when the sunlight started illuminating the sky.

At 6 AM, I decided to put on my winter mountain jacket and boots and complete my pilgrimage to the feet of our beloved Murshid SAM. I made up the trip up the hill from Lama, crossing the village still deeply asleep made up of houses and tents.

When I reached the Maqbara, where Murshid SAM is resting under a tomb made of simple stones, I came down to my knees and touched the ground with my forehead in gratefulness and thanks.

I spoke to Sam:

“You see I came to you again to thank you. I wish to ask nothing more for myself. I have received so many blessings. The cry of my childhood heart has been answered, that deep longing to know the truth that has driven me for so many years has been quenched. Allah and this wonderful lineage have led me all along to reach this point in my life, to come to you, so here I am again. I am throwing myself at your feet. Not to worship you, but as a companion praying with you to the Divine Grace of Allah that we all be One in the presence of the Beloved. At times, I believed that I was acting from my own free will, what an illusion, you have driven me and I could only learn to surrender to the process. Thank you for my dear friend Sauluddin who I have known for thirty years. He told me once that he did not like puritans and wanted to make sure that I knew that true liberation comes when saint and sinner come together around the circle of unity in all my selves. You know that I had realized that already and this is why I love him so much as he is, accepting him in his totality as a being led by the highest ideal combined with all his humanness. Thank you for all the godfather and godmother in our lineage such as my friends Hidayat Inayat Khan and Aziza, Reverend Master Jiyu-Kennett, Nyogen Senzaki, Mother Mary, Suleyman Dede, Joe & Guin Miller. Thank you for Moineddin Jablonski, for Pir Shabda Kahn and for Murshida Khadija Julia Goforth. Thank you for allowing me to be with the companions, to walk in the footsteps of such friends, of the Silsila, of all the prophets, to allow the Sifats to exemplify their wondrous qualities in my heart that is really the heart of the one. You remember my longing in the cliffs of Mendocino, immersed in the One, helped by the magic of the peyote, looking for the guide who could help unlock the doors to come back in the fold of the beloved at will. I am so grateful to all of you who have by your compassion so generously bestowed your blessings on my longing heart. Shakur Allah. In this caravan of life, I am not only grateful for all those who have shown the way before but also for all those who are entrusted friends and who feel the same longing to be in the presence of the Beloved. I bring with me not only my dear wife Monick and all the children and grandchildren, the family, the friends but specially the mureed. I pray that I can be true to the spirit of my beloved Majid, an instrument of the divine grace in service to all. I bring you my beloved Sophia, Salima, Nadia and Noufissa in Morocco, Cigdem in Turkey, Cora & Lisbeth in France, Umbreen in Pakistan, Noor, Bitak, Chakameh, Deirdre, Fareen, Juanita, Lisa-Renee, Sanaa, Shahid, Shihana and Sophia Nazli in the US. Please help me and pray with me for all those named and for those friends close to our heart like Imrana, Nipa, Sakeenah and Trish. Let’s say the Fatiha together for all of them known and unknown who you are placing on my path so that I can be of service to them, to help them find the light in the niche of their heart, light upon light.”

I started the Fatiha. On the first words Bismillah er-rahman, er-rahim, I could not go any further, shocking with tears. I felt my heart exploding in compassion and gratitude. I could only think of Hafiz’s poem shared by Saadi under Ar-Rahim, the moon of love in his beautiful book “The Sufi Book of Life, 99 Pathways of the Heart.”

The sun is the wine, the moon is the cup.
Pour the sun into the moon if you want to be filled.
Drinking such wine could be good or bad.
Why not drink anyway!

I tried again to restart the Fatiha and now could not go beyond the first word “Bismillah.” I had to let the tears flow freely, my whole body was shaking uncontrollably. This could have been embarrassing. I was not crying for want, for pain, for longing, just for gratefulness for all the miracle of having the blessing to be in presence of the scent of the beloved. I just remembered all the blessings, the miracles, the inspirations and the sweetness of all those friendships. Sophia came first to my heart and I cried sweetly again. Then I thought each one, they were all there with me. I did not have anything to dry my face and used my sleeves. Those gestures made me laugh, seeing my dear wife scolding me for my lack of good manners.

Finally I was able to sing a Fatiha with a trembling voice and then another and another again. I started doing my daily practices. To be there, praying with my Murshid, being so thankful of all the blessings of the beautiful transmission that he left for us and also all the abundance of blessings of all that has happened in my life since the last visit and since I came to this blessed spiritual path, was overwhelming. I could not stop the tears.

I did the Muslim call for prayer, the Fatiha, the Suratul Ikhlass and Suratul `Asr, the full Zikr of Hazrat Inayat Khan, the recital of the 99 names of Allah, the prayers Saum and Salat and finally the heart sutra. By that time it was past 7 AM and I was feeling the pain of hunger in my stomach. I made my way back after offering once more my thanks for Murshid blessings.

Breakfast was wonderful and most welcome. Of course meeting all the old friends is part of the wonder of such retreat. Michael, Aslan, Saul, Ananda, Aarifa of the true north, Eddie, Murad, Sarfaraz, Mansur, Deborah Sabura and so many more, it was a reunion full of the joy of kisses and hugs.

Mansur Johnson was with us again to introduce his book Murshid, a personal memoir of life with American Sufi Samuel L. Lewis. He was taking orders for delivery in September 2006. This book will go fast and only 2000 copies have been printed. Otis B. Johnson was a young college professor of English in the 1960’s when he joined the exodus of hippies to California to meet someone his friend said could take them where they wanted to go the fastest. Where did they want to go? They wanted to meet the divinity, obtain God-consciousness, get enlightened, find love, experience Samadhi, in short didn’t know for sure. What happened? Otis B. Johnson became Mansur Johnson during a three year encounter with the world’s first Guru-Roshi-Murshid, Samuel L. Lewis. Murshid shows in intimate detail how Murshid, the first Western born Sufi teacher, Zen master, and practitioner of Indian cosmic metaphysics, accomplished his life’s purpose.

“Everytime I remember Sam, I end up laughing at myself. That’s pretty good work for a dead rascal-saint.”  Wrote Ram Dass, author of Still Here: Embracing Aging, Changing and Dying.

We had our first meeting in the great dome at 10 AM. First we did the prayers Saum and Salat and then did an old practice from Murshid Sam “Ya Allah, in love, reverence and humility, I surrender to thee, to thee alone and Thou thus raise me spiritually.” Saul mentioned the importance of keeping up the old practices from Sam that got us where we are today. Since his passing we tend to adopt so many new practices and sometimes do not put enough concentration on Sam’s original practices.

We did the healing ritual with a beautiful Zikr lead by Ananda singing “Bismillah, er Rahman, er Rahim.” I do not know if it was the melody, the remembrance, the feeling of Shakur, but the tears flowed again down my checks and I did not try to hide them, I was among friends. They knew, most of them felt the same way anyway.

At lunch we have the custom to hold hands with the residents of Lama Foundation and sing the blessing “O Thou, the Sustainer of our body, heart and soul, bless all that we receive in thankfulness.” Before the blessing another custom is to wish well those who leave Lama. We sang from the Native American tradition “While you are away from your people, we do pray, that in your searching, you will find balance in your heart and mind.”

In the afternoon, people can choose from many activities such as learning the art of the Tea ceremony, the singing choir lead by Aslan, and many other options. At 3:30 we all meet for the spiritual walks taught by Murshid Sauluddin. In the evening after dinner we shared Zikr.

The evening Zikr was magical with such a group of elders, holding hands in a circle and singing Allah or La illaha ilallahu, Mohamedah Rassul Allah in so many forms, tones and rhythms, thanks to Aslan for his great leadership. Not only Aslan makes it deep but fun as well.

The first night in the yurt was much better than sleeping in the car, however temperature that can be in the 80’s in the daytime dropped to 40 degrees at night. I was happy to have brought my sleeping bag.

In the morning after a 6 AM wakeup call, we ascended the mountain as a group to the Maqbara of Murshid Sam and did Zikr and Fatiha after spreading a cloth on his tomb that came from the tomb of Moineddin Chisti in India. We ended up with some original dances of Murshid Sam led again by Aslan. The sun finally warmed us around 7 AM and I shared Hafiz’s poem with everyone: “the sun is the wine, the moon is the cup….” So Asha suggested doing Murshid dance “fill your cup, drink it up, ya Allah Allah…”

After a breakfast prepared by Lama’s staff, we met in the main dome meditation room. Asha suggested to go to the small pueblo meditation room on the side, it is a most extraordinary architecture, first the door is very low, forcing the person to enter in humility by lowering one’s head, the inside altar is in the center of a circle built on two levels. Asha led some meditative practices and we went back to the main dome for the healing ritual led by Michael.

As we formed a circle, Saul called me in the middle of it. I hesitated and he called me again forcefully. I walked to him not knowing what he was going to do. Saul asked me to stand and took my hands. He initiated me as a Shafayat in the Dervish Healing Order. I had no clue that he was going to do that, he simply said that since I was functioning already as such it was just time to recognize it formally.

After lunch with Deirdre and her son Able, I found a couple of Lama residents willing to play GO with me, the meditative Japanese game with white and black stones.

The afternoon was busy with singing in the choir led by Aslan, with the spiritual walks by Sauluddin and since today was Friday, with the traditional practice of the Jewish Sabbath in the evening. Nasrudin was volunteered to tell us some stories in his stand up comedian act.

We talked about having our next year meeting at the Mentorgarten in San Francisco.

We did the walks of the elements led by Murshid Sauluddin and the walks of the sifats, the first one for Suhban Allah (God is pure), the second one for Alhamdullillah (All praise be to Allah) and the third for Allaho Akbar (Peace is Power as given by Murshid Sam).

Sabbath was officiated by Elaine, after the Jewish prayers, we shared the wine and the bread in communion. Not only all the people from the retreat were present but also all the Lama residents and staff members. Aslan led us in the dances including the Zikr with the outer circle singing Echad Yahid Umi Yuhad, the One, every single one, each one joined and united in the One and the inner circle singing La Illaha el ilallahu (nothing exist except Allah). This was quite a statement uniting two traditions in a single dance and witnessing both communities praying for the same thing that nothing exist except the One in Hebrew and Arabic.

Nasrudin was remarkable and performed an outstanding and hilarious stand alone act poking fun at various people and entities including the Sufis. He told us a poem from Kabir that to find out if you have a real teacher, you should hang him or her over a cliff for an hour or two and if you find out that they did not wet their pants, may be you found your real teacher. Someone in the group asked where the nearer cliff was suggesting that we should hang out our beloved Murshid Sauluddin. That brought some good laughter.

Murshid Sauluddin bed time story concluded the night. His story about the man who sold his tooth with the moral to the story that if you want to get rid of a mouse, you should not hire a tiger, was very entertaining in his well proven style of the old time story teller. During his bedtime story, everyone was to lie down on the floor with their pillow and blanket and the light was turned off.

Again the night was cold and at 40 degrees in the yurt in the morning from the high of 94 in the afternoon, it was difficult to get out of the sleeping bag at 6 AM. The sun was most welcome around 7 AM when he appeared behind the mountain ridge.

Our homework for the night came from one of the 10 Sufi thoughts about finding the teacher and spirit of guidance ever present in each and everyone of our heart. I had done my homework the first morning at the Maqbara.

Saturday morning after breakfast at 8 AM and some smoothing with friends we started the meeting with a report from Mumin about Murshida Vera Corda Maqbara next to Murshid Sam. In addition to Mumin presentation on Murshida Vera’s life, many made comments and remembrances. Work will start soon to beautify the area around her tomb to make it more practical for people to sit and pray with her.

Noel sang for us a song that Murshida Vera Corda enjoyed hearing from him while he was taking care of her in her later years. Now Noel is like me, musically impaired, so we were moved by his effort and his heart more than his style.

I was invited to conduct the healing ritual which I started with the call for prayer, the Fatiha and practices on five of the 99 beautiful names that are pathways of healing the heart for Bar, Tawwab, Muntaqim, Afuw and Ra’uf. Then after doing the Ya Shaffee, Ya Kaffee breathing practices with a visualization of the elements of earth, water, fire and air, we did the prayer Nayaz : Beloved lord, almighty god, through the rays of the sun, through the waves of the air, through the all pervading life in space, purify and revivify us and we pray, heal our body, heart and soul. After the healing ritual, with Aslan as the balance and `Aarifa of the true north’ as the reader of the names, we closed the morning session and went for lunch prepared by the Lama staff, a vegetarian meal with pasta salad, tofu and a choice of dressings.

The company over the meal and the conversation were priceless. We bathed in the pleasure of each other company, exchanging high spirited jokes and laughter.

Monday was our last day together at Lama. In the morning we got up again in the cold at 6 AM to climb the mountain in pilgrimage to Murad Ahmed Chisti Maqbara. There Ananda led us in a meditation form dating back 18,000 years in the Bon Bon Tibetan tradition. We closed with a dance of thankfulness around Murshid Sam’s tomb and left the mountain after having created in our mind eye a connection from there to our home thanks to a meditation led by Murad, who was just back from an extensive trip in China where he studied another form of the Shi Gong tradition.

We sat again in the main dome to share our experiences of the night after having done our homework as assigned by Murshid Sauluddin. Many felt confident enough in this environment to open their heart and share their thoughts and dreams with the family.

Many people complimented the evening practice, after having led a Zikr separately for the men and for the women and then for the beauty of the moment when we all came together, the men making a circle around the women’s circle. Many felt the harmony in the energetic exchange between Jelal and Jamal. In the ruin of the old building, we had stand as a group of men, doing Zikr after recognizing each other as man among men. Mansur told us that Murshid Sam had initiated him as Naqib or representative of the spiritual hierarchy, even that he did not know what it meant at the time.

In the afternoon, Sauluddin led the saints and prophets attunement walks starting in the prayer Saum with Rama and also Sita, Krishna, Parvati, Hanuman, Shiva, Buddha, Abraham, Solomon, Zarathustra, Moses, Jesus, Mohammed and then Quan Yin who he kept for last as the mother of compassion and love.

After dinner, we started the evening practices with the Japanese Tea ceremony presented by Asha and accompanied by Siddiq and some of Lama’s resident. Asha led us in a Zikr of La illaha ilallahu most uplifting.

In the morning, I got up at 6 and left following Sauluddin’s car. Saul, Ananda, Murad and I had breakfast in Taos and lunch at the airport in Albuquerque before saying goodbye until next time.

On the flight back home, reflecting on the week retreat, feeling the separation from the beloved friends, drinking once more of the wine of elation that we shared, feeling the gratefulness for the company of such Madzubs, revisiting the site of Murshid Sam tomb on the mountain, as if I was still there physically, tears filled up my eyes once more. The blessings of the healing of the heart felt like the greatest purpose of the DHO, now it is time to go back in service to bestow the light and share the Baraka with all the beloved, family and friends.

In service,


“Murshid” by Mansur Johnson Published

Beloved One,

Please find attached a flyer describing Mansur Johnson’s new book:
Murshid: A Personal Memoir of Life with American Sufi Samuel L. Lewis

This book is a great blessing that Mansur has been working at sharing with us. It will be printed in only 2000 copies and the group at the DHO meeting at Lama placed the first orders already.

You can purchase online at http://www.mansurjohnson.com

Love and blessings


Otis B. Johnson was a young college professor of English in the 1960s when he joined the exodus of hippies to California to meet someone his friend said could take them where they wanted to go the fastest.

Where did they want to go? – They wanted to meet the divinity, obtain God-consciousness, get enlightened, fi nd love, experience samadhi, in short – they didn’t know for sure.

What happened? – Otis B. Johnson became Mansur Johnson during a three year encounter with the world’s first Guru-Roshi-Murshid, Samuel L. Lewis.

Murshid shows in intimate detail how Murshid, the first Western-born Sufi teacher, Zen master, and practitioner of Indian cosmic metaphysics, accomplished his life’s purpose.

“Everytime I remember Sam, I end up laughing at myself. That’s pretty good work for a dead rascal-saint.”
– Ram Dass, author of Still Here: Embracing Aging,

Changing and Dying
“I have no fonder memory of the 60’s than the appearance of this strange-looking man, who said things that made me fi rst laugh, then smile, then later pause in appreciation of a spiritual original, a pioneer.”
– Dr. Jacob Needleman, author of The Wisdom of Love and The American Soul

“Dear Reader: Prepare for a unique adventure of spiritual discovery and transformation…. you have before you a wild, bucking-bronco of a ride. Hold on!”
– from the foreward by Neil Douglas-Klotz, author of The Sufi Book of Life

A Report on Harmony by Hakim Sauluddin

A Report on Harmony
A Reminder of our Open Gathering on Lama Mountain – June 21 – 27, 2006:

Dear family,

We are amidst a potentially momentous time of peace between our orders.  This past April saw two separate meetings focusing on Peace and Reconciliation: In early April there was the meeting of the Federation of the Sufi Message in Holland, and in late April there was a Harmony meeting of the Ruhaniat and the Sufi Order in Madison, Wisconsin.

The meeting of the Federation of the Sufi Message in Holland was a genuine love feast of prayers, dance, walk,  mutual recognition and respect.  It was wonderful to see 4 of the branches present in a heart filled sharing mode.  This bodes well for the future.

In addition,  I am also very pleased by the warmth and loving attention which was paid to our pain and grievances by the members of the Sufi Order present at our Madison meeting.   Alhamdulliah!

On Lama Mountain, with Murshid SAM as a “living witness,” we hope to pursue this path of peace and loving forgiveness.  We shall use Murshid SAM’s statement “I am willing to work with anyone who is willing to work with  me.” as a guide to our activities.

Please note that Lama 2006  is An Open Gathering.  All beings who are interested in Spiritual Service, or healing in general are invited to join with us.  Initiations will be offered where appropriate.

The Lama gathering will offer practices, prayers, rituals (both spontaneous & formal), walks, dances, visualizations, tea, zikrs, breathing practices, visualizations, bed time stories, Ram Nam, choir, great food, and our usual frolicking amongst the new trees.  Plus, the retreat hut will be available for our usage.

We shall also resurrect our attunement to the 10 Sufi Thoughts of Hazrat Inayat Khan.  These are original and essential statements of our lineage.  It is astounding how succinct the Message is within these gems.

We shall, of course,  also continue our training of Healing Conductors and Spiritual Healers.

For more information: contact Jennifer Avian

Price for the full week – $350.  All monies go to the Lama Foundation.  Staff receives neither honorarium, nor reimbursement.

Finally, please continue to do the healing ritual, and include our Inayati family in the `known & unknown’ section.  For if we cannot make peace with our brothers and sisters, then what hope is there for the world.

I send all my love and blessings and prayers for a peaceful heart.

See you on the Mountain.

Yours in Service to the Real,
Hakim Sauluddin
Charlottesville, VA

DHO Letter from Hakim Sauluddin

Beloved of God,

Much love and many greetings from Virginia.

Amidst the turmoil of the world, the Sufi looks for an opportunity to serve.

The following upcoming activities offer us all that opportunity:

• Federation of the Sufi Message: April 6-8 in Holland.(May there be peace amongst all our Inayati family.)

• Harmony Council: April 27 in Madison, Wisconsin – Finding ways to bring peace between our Ruhaniat & the Sufi Order.

• Haus Shneida: May 22 – 28 in Northern Germany – a family gathering, our 22nd year. Ya Shakur!

• DHO Lama June in New Mexico: This year (June 21 to 27) will have honored guests, a preview of Mansur’s New Book on Murshid SAM to pre-purchase, walks, dance, stories, zikr, tea, Ram Nam, rituals, healing, alchemical transmission,, and of course, our procession to the Maqbarra. All this plus our usual frolicking amongst the new trees. AND, the Retreat Hut will be open for our usage. Cost only $350 for the week – all monies collected go to the Lama Foundation. For information and registration: Jennifer Avian

I have just returned from Turkey and Uzbekestan. In addition to visiting Konya, I also went to Bukhara, Samarkand and Tashkent. It has been a long time dream of mine to visit these “jewel cities” of Central Asia, the home of Tamerlane (I visited his tomb in Samarkand), and Hazrati Nakshiband outside Bukhara (after whom they named the Nakshibandi order).

There are very specific feeling at each of the tombs I have visited. i.e. Mevlana is very warm- hearted; Shemsuddin is very uplifted and `pure,’ almost an `empty’ feeling; whilst Nakshiband’s tomb has very strong feelings of discipline & direction along the `straight path.’

There were many more holy places I did not get a chance to visit – Inshallah! Next time. I found the Uzbek people warm and friendly, and their gracious attitudes reminded me of Turkish villagers 40 years ago. True hospitality, and open hearts. Mashallah!

It is a great blessings to see just how wide our spreading of the Message has become: Our family has initiated talibs from San Francisco to Saint Petersberg – the Brittish Isles to Morocco – Germany to Turkey; and from New York to Australia.

Alhamdulliah! May the Message of God reach far and wide.

And, to all who practice the Absent Healing Ritual: Sending the Peace of God through us, and directing this Peace towards the world at large is one of the DHO’s main concentrations. Please do this on a regular basis. This is still the simplest and surest way I have found to attune oneself to Hazrat Inayat Khan’s blessingsI send all my love and blessings, and prayers for your continued growth and the increased prosperity of your heart. See you on Lama Mountain !

Hakim Sauluddin
Charlottesville, Virginia

New Book: Spy Princess

Noor Inayat Khan
The Princess Who Became a Spy

She was a Sufi pacifist who fought for Britain and died at the hands of the Gestapo. As a new biography separates truth from myth, Boyd Tonkin celebrates the remarkable Noor Inayat Khan. Published: 20 February 2006,
Sutton Publishing

This is the story of a young Indian Muslim woman who joined a secret organization dedicated to acts of sabotage, subversion and terrorism across Europe. A fierce critic of British imperialism, she worked with passion and audacity to damage and disrupt the forces of law and order. Captured, she proved impenitent and uncontrollable. She died a horrific death in custody. And now, perhaps, is the right time to revisit the life of Princess Noor-un-nisa Inayat Khan, George Cross, Croix de Guerre with gold star, MBE: the British secret agent who was kicked into a “bloody mess” on the stone floors of Dachau concentration camp through the night of 13 September 1944, and then shot with the word “Liberté” on her lips. Hers, after all, is a remarkable chapter in the history of Muslims in Britain and the West.

For more than half a century, myths, misconceptions and outright fantasies have crowded around the memory of Noor Inayat Khan. She was the first female radio operator sent into Nazi-occupied France by the Special Operations Executive (SOE). Through the frantic, terrifying summer of 1943, the untried 29-year-old spy found herself virtually in charge of Resistance communications in the Paris area as the Gestapo arrested cell after cell around her. The daughter of a famous Sufi mystic and musician, and an Indianised American mother, she was remembered by all as a “dreamy”, sensitive child. Yet Noor the spy became a tigress whose bravery and defiance startled – and outraged – her German jailers and torturers. A few responded differently. When told during his postwar interrogation about her death in Dachau, Hans Josef Kieffer – head of the Gestapo headquarters in Paris – apparently broke down in tears.

Controversies and rumors still abound. Noor’s posthumous career as a war heroine began in earnest in 1952, when her friend and comrade Jean Overton Fuller did her best to dispel the fog of confusion and misinformation left by her death in a book, Madeleine – Noor’s Resistance codename. Maurice Buckmaster, Noor’s colonel in SOE, and the top cryptographer Leo Marks both recalled her in their memoirs with an intense, possessive – but rather patronizing – affection that often makes for more heat than light. Marks, briefed to expect as his latest apprentice a “potty princess”, typically begins his recollections of their first encounter by writing that “no one had mentioned Noor’s extraordinary beauty”.

>From her spellbound SOE trainers at Beaulieu Manor to the governor of Pforzheim jail who came almost to revere the prisoner he kept in chains, Noor left no one unmoved. Yet her quiet charisma made fancy corrupt fact. In recent years, two colorful novels have embroidered her tale with the interests and penchants of their authors: the French writer Laurent Joffrin’s frankly romanticized All That I Have, and Shauna Singh Baldwin’s more politically engaged The Tiger Claw.

However, the recent declassification of personal files has allowed the always-murky deeds of SOE and its “F Section” agents who spied (and died) in France to emerge further into the light of history. Fresh material surfaced when, last year, Sarah Helm’s A Life in Secrets traced the biography of Vera Atkins: the SOE staff officer who, plagued by remorse at the hideous fate of so many of her F Section “girls”, made a secret postwar enquiry into their betrayal and capture. Now, Shrabani Basu – a historian and journalist based in London as correspondent for an Indian newspaper group – has pieced together Noor’s story more fully and reliably than ever before in a new biography, Spy Princess.

For Basu, “60 years after the war, Noor’s vision and courage are inspirational”. She has proposed to English Heritage that a blue plaque should mark Noor’s address at 4 Taviton Street in Bloomsbury, and a decision will be made in June. Thanks to her book, a new generation can grasp what Noor did, and how she did it, with much greater clarity. Yet the “why” remains, in some sense, as elusive as ever.

Noor Inayat Khan was the great-great-great granddaughter of Tipu Sultan, the Muslim ruler of Mysore whose celebrated military prowess stalled the advance of East India Company forces at the end of the 18th century. Ever after, the British in India treated the family with the utmost suspicion. Yet Hazrat, her father, turned his back on this rebel and warrior tradition when he became a Sufi teacher and founded an order to spread – via music – his peaceful, tolerant and non-dogmatic faith to the world. A gifted singer and instrumentalist from a family of virtuosi, he met his American wife on tour in California. By the time Noor was born, in January 1914, the Inayat Khans were living and performing in Moscow, and her mother, the former Ora Ray Baker, had donned sari and veil as “Amina Begum”.

After an infancy in the chilly wartime squares of Bloomsbury, Noor grew up in the suburbs of Paris, at “Fazal Manzil”: a much-loved house in Suresnes outside which a military band still plays in her honor every 14 July. The eldest child of four, seen by all as kind, vague and artistic, she suddenly had to take charge of the family when her father’s death on a visit to India in 1927 left her mother immobilized by grief. For the first, but not the last, time, crisis turned Noor the dreamer into Noor the leader.

In the 1930s, Noor studied music (especially the harp) at the Paris conservatory, and child psychology at the Sorbonne. She also became a talented writer and broadcaster of children’s stories. On Amazon you can find Noor’s Twenty Jataka Tales (1939): charming Buddhist fables in which, eerily, animals overcome their fragility to perform feats of bravery and sacrifice. At this time, she got engaged to a pianist of Jewish origin, one aspect – together with rumors of a later, wartime engagement to a fellow British officer – of a still-mysterious emotional life.

After Germany invaded France in June 1940, Noor the Muslim Sufi pacifist – and passionate believer in India’s right to independence from colonial rule – made the moral choice that fixed the course of her life, and death. She and her brother Vilayat decided, in the face of Nazi aggression, that non-violence was not enough. They jointly vowed that they would work – as Vilayat told Shrabani Basu in 2003 – “to thwart the aggression of the tyrant”.

Surviving the chaos of the mass flight from Paris to Bordeaux, they made a dramatic seaborne escape to England. There, Noor volunteered for the WAAF (Women’s Auxiliary Air Force) and started on the long road of signals and wireless training that would lead her – a woman raised in France, perfectly bilingual, and with advanced radio skills – to recruitment as a secret agent in November 1942. Selwyn Jepson, the novelist-turned-spy who first interviewed her for SOE, later found himself remembering Noor with a “very personal vividness… the small, still features, the dark quiet eyes, the soft voice, and the fine spirit glowing in her”. No one ever forgot Noor, or ever felt indifferent about her, though some SOE trainers doubted her suitability for espionage and tried to block her progress into the field.

They failed, and within days of her arrival in France in June 1943 she had proved them wrong. As the broken Prosper network of Resistance cells collapsed, Noor dodged from safe house to safe house in Paris, outwitting the Gestapo and transmitting messages with immense speed and accuracy in hostile conditions. “Single-handedly,” according to Basu, “she did the work of six radio operators.” In London, code-master Leo Marks noted that “her transmissions were flawless, with all their security checks intact”.

With F Section still in disarray, but starting to rebuild thanks to her work, Noor was finally betrayed in October – probably by Renée Garry, sister of her first contact in Paris. Within minutes of being taken to the Gestapo HQ at 84 avenue Foch, she had climbed onto a bathroom window ledge in an escape attempt. Forced by the Germans to keep up radio transmissions (the “radio game” inflicted on captured agents), Noor duly sent the agreed 18-letter signal to alert SOE about her capture. It was ignored: one of a catalogue of SOE blunders. Later in her interrogation, she joined with other agents to plan another daring escape that involved loosening, and then removing, the bars on their windows. It almost succeeded – ironically, a simultaneous RAF air raid on Paris prompted a sudden security check.

Now viewed as incorrigibly dangerous and uncooperative, Noor was sent in November 1942 to Pforzheim prison in Germany, where – bound by three chains, in solitary confinement – she endured 10 months of medieval abuse. She ranked as a Nacht und Nebel (“Night and Fog”) inmate, earmarked only for oblivion and death. Shackled, starved, beaten, she never talked. Then, in September 1944, came the transfer to Dachau along with three other female agents, and the end of her sufferings.

Knowing the whole truth – or almost the whole truth – about Noor does not make her any less paradoxical. Basu, who quashes so many myths about this “Muslim woman of Indian origin who made the highest sacrifice for Britain”, also stresses that she fervently backed the struggle for Indian liberty. Indeed, Noor shocked – and maybe rather impressed – the interview panel when she went for an WAAF commission in 1942 by arguing that, after the war, she might feel obliged to fight the British in India. That makes her – although a commissioned British officer, and a holder of the George Cross – a curious national heroine. As for her Muslim identity, the Inayat Khans’ brand of all-inclusive Sufism would count as heresy or worse to the kind of hardliner who now presumes to speak for Islam in and to the West.

The key to her career may be that this child of a liberal, cultured home freely chose her fate. She chose to fight Nazism; she chose to do it alongside the British; she chose the risks of espionage; and she chose to stay in Paris when SOE ordered her home. At a memorial service in Paris, General de Gaulle’s niece summed up her achievement: “Nothing, neither her nationality, nor the traditions of her family, none of these obliged her to take her position in the war. However, she chose it. It is our fight that she chose, that she pursued with an admirable, an invincible courage.” When she died with “freedom” on her lips, it was hers. And it was ours as well.

Shrabani Basu’s ‘Spy Princess: the life of Noor Inayat Khan’ is published by Sutton Publishing (£18.99). She will be talking with Ian Jack and MRD Foot at the Nehru Centre, Indian High Commission, 8 South Audley Street, London W1, on 1 March commissioned British officer, and a holder of the George Cross – a curious national heroine. As for her Muslim identity, the Inayat Khans’ brand of all-inclusive Sufism would count as heresy or worse to the kind of hardliner who now presumes to speak for Islam in and to the West.