“I have loved in life and I have been loved.
I have drunk the bowl of poison from the hands of love as nectar,
and have been raised above life’s joy and sorrow.
My heart, aflame in love, set afire every heart that came in touch with it.
My heart has been rent and joined again;
My heart has been broken and again made whole;
My heart has been wounded and healed again;
A thousand deaths my heart has died, and thanks be to love, it lives yet.
I went through hell and saw there love’s raging fire,
and I entered heaven illumined with the light of love.
I wept in love and made all weep with me;
I mourned in love and pierced the hearts of men;
And when my fiery glance fell on the rocks, the rocks burst forth as volcanoes.
The whole world sank in the flood caused by my one tear;
With my deep sigh the earth trembled, and when I cried aloud the name of my beloved,
I shook the throne of God in heaven.
I bowed my head low in humility, and on my knees I begged of love,
“Disclose to me, I pray thee, O love, thy secret.”
She took me gently by my arms and lifted me above the earth, and spoke softly in my ear,
“My dear one, thou thyself art love, art lover,
and thyself art the beloved whom thou hast adored.”
― Hazrat Inayat Khan, The Dance of the Soul
The Prospero’s was founded on the 4th way school model introduced to the West by George Gurdjieff, which if the tales are correct were derived from his time in schools of Sufism. He was called “A runaway Sufi”, more than a few times. Sufism regardless of the current gloss put on it in the US and the West is Islamic in nature, and cannot be separated from its source. There are of course those that propose that it is part of an older teaching complex, and that may be so, yet Sufism has been a part of Islamic thought from the beginning.
We should recognize this, and celebrate it. By plumbing the depths of the teachings of Sufism we can enrich the 4th way school tradition in the west that has drifted from its original pole-star. As the Sufis gave the gift of Romantic Love to the Troubadours, who took this message to the court of Eleanor of Aquitaine where it spread across Europe bringing Love again to marriage which had been a primarily financial arrangement from the time of early Christianity, so should the hidden gems of Sufism and Islamic thought bring its gift to the west again through the 4th Way Schools.