Qurbat - Dearness to God: The Goal of Sufism

The Growth and Transformation of the Holistic Health Movement

The flower children have reached maturity. The illusions of youth have long since passed, and the realizations sought after are being attained. We broke loose in the 60's, studied and practiced in the 70's. Blended in and mellowed out in the 80's, and are rising by the power of Truth in the 90's. 

In the 70's Holistic Health was the study of physical disease and therapeutics. In the 80's it was patience, work and digestion. The main thrust of Holistic Health in the 90's was spiritual realization as a means to personal and societal ideals. Looking seriously at the realities of social reformation, spiritual truths have become the tools available for the attainment of personal goals. Personal goals will include societal and environmental goals. Theology is a major force in intellectual and psychological reform and the studies and practices of the Sufis have risen as a means of understanding and achievement. 

The Goal of Sufism (Self-purification) is to understand and live in The True Love.  That goal, maintain the Sufis, is the highest aspiration of the human heart.  Love is the true force of creation.  Creation is a manifestation of Divine Love. 

Assuming that, let's explore the various meanings and manifestations of Love and their impact on the human individual and society.  We might define the basis of human motivation as "to love and be loved".  The sufi loves and is loved in the truest and ultimate sense.  S/he lives in the certain and experiential knowledge of God's Love for creation and humanity and therefore strives to know and become truly human. S/he spends his/her time doing deeds of self-effacement and purification, studying knowledges that will increase the orientation toward the One True Source and decrease the likelihood of falling into error and delusion, at the same time manifesting by every means available that same love in human understanding to all creatures.  By coming to know his/her own needs and the means to their fulfillment, s/he comes to know the needs of all humanity and the means to their satisfaction. 

The Loss of Love 

It certainly seems like the materialist society (whose goals are all the same) is simply putting the cart before the horse.  We all feel the need for material stability, but why?  If we were to look deeply, we would find that we feel material stability would be an adequate (even requisite) platform from which to manifest and receive love - from family, friends and society in general.  The difficulty with this is simply that, as we all know, the life of this world is fleeting and thereby the search for material stability becomes all consuming and can lead to tragedy. The primary motivation (Love) becomes lost in the unending search for the unattainable, and never becomes attained.  The goal becomes lost in the search for the means. 

A man constantly caught in the quest for material stability will never have the time to love and receive love from his wife and family.  This is the sad tragedy of the "American way". 

To this we say "Love Now!" 

Put yourself right with Love.  This is not an unpopular theme in the world of contemporary psychology.  Let love flow from you now and you will discover from within yourself the very source of life itself, without which it is but a hollow shell.  You'll no longer be lost in the priorities of your mortal existence, and all self-concern and egoism will depart.  This does not mean to say that you will become irresponsible. Quite the contrary. You will fulfill your responsibilities all the more effectively since your motivation will be from the ease of love rather than from the hardship of concern and worry. 

The truly enlightened beings of the world, Bodhi-Sattvas, Mahatmas, Buddhas and Sufi Masters (etc.) have reached (at least) the stage of realization called 'Subsistence in Divine Love', and their only concern is to provide for their family (humanity) that same subsistence. Hence their need to manifest. They possess a secret that wants to be known.

This level of existence is what we all aspire to.  It is the aspiration and goal of Sufism.  It is the ultimate and at the same time the beginning of "to love and be loved".  To know and live forever in Divine Love.  A family, community or society based on such a principle is going to stay together through thick and thin. 

You're never out of touch with Love!