Initiation in the Sufi Order
"What is our object in taking this path of initiation? Our object in this is
to become human, to find the way how to become human, how to live a human being's
life to its fullness, how to live a life of love, harmony and beauty."
(Hazrat Inayat Khan)
One may be initiated into the Sufi Order by one of its Representatives, individuals
who are authorized to initiate and who are appointed by the head of the Sufi Order.
Those interested in initiation are encouraged to select a Representative with
whom they feel a deep trust and respect, for these qualities are necessary to
facilitate the training offered. The initiate receives, from her/his initiator,
spiritual practices which are designed to promote spiritual realization, facilitate
the unfoldment of their being and assist them in meeting life's challenges and
demands. These practices are not compulsory but are given as a gift.
The only regulation which members are asked to observe is a restriction on
the use of non-medical drugs. It is Pir Vilayat's belief that drugs can interfere
with the practices and spiritual training offered to a member.
Here's a bit more information regarding initiation. I've included some quotes
from Hazrat Inayat Khan, the founder of the Sufi Order, to help explain. If you
want more information, I've included two more pages of information: one page contains
more quotations relating to initiation while the other page contains the "official"
stuff from the Sufi Order secretariat. And if you want more information, you can
contact either the Sufi Order International
What is initiation?
"Initiation only means a step forward, a step which should be taken with hope
and courage, for without courage and hope it would be most difficult to take any
When does one get initiated?
"Initiation in the real sense of the word, as it is used on the spiritual path,
takes place when a person, in spite of having a religion and belief, an opinion
and ideas about spiritual things, feels that he should take a step in a direction
which he does not know; when he takes the first step, that is an initiation."
In addition to this "natural initiation", some individuals who feel attuned
to this spiritual path, choose to deepen their connection by being initiated into
the Sufi Order and connecting with a personal guide.
Why get initiated?
"The aim is to find God within ourselves, to dive deep into ourselves, so that
we may touch the unity of the whole being. It is toward this end that we are working
by the power of initiation, in order that we may receive inspiration and blessing
in our life from within."
"When a person is initiated, from that hour, one is linked with the chain of
Murshids and Prophets, and so enabled to receive the light running through this
current, through the chain of Masters."
Initiation is a very sacred step and should not be entered into lightly. Once
an individual has explored this path and feels that this is truly their spiritual
path, it is their responsibility to request initiation. Ideally, the Representative
at their local centre will be the initiator, since this is the person whom the
candidate will see most often; however, any individual appointed by the Pir can
perform the initiation ceremony. If the initiator feels that the individual is
ready for initiation, they will initiate the individual. They may, however, ask
the person to wait for a period of time.
More information on initiation