Nayaz, an interpretation

–Shamcher Bryn Beorse

You stop, think, feel after that first word. Who is beloved? By whom? Without waiting for any answer yet, you let this one first word float enticingly in space and inside you, embracing you, bit by bit assuring you that every atom component of your body, of your surroundings, is beloved and loving; also the tiny thought components of your mind, feeling components of your heart. So your morning is new, your whole day is new and fresh, lovely and beloved! Cascades of fluid love course through your veins, circulate through your nerves, make you new and whole and incomparable and interlocked and interjoyed with all; with your friends and so-called enemies; with the whole.

And who is so compassionately loving all these atom components and thought and feeling components and friends, enemies and stars?

That lover must be whoever or whatever created all these things and beings, for why, otherwise, would It have taken on this gigantic task?

Who is this creating giant? Looking deeply into myself, could I possibly be involved? Being both creature and creator? And what shall we call It? The second word of the prayer suggests:

It is a much used word for this sort of thing and, perhaps, it is a good idea to use familiar words — and let any new aspect we want to introduce be expressed by associations and environment. For example, the word LORD alone may be a bit scary like a servant would feel toward a rude and abrupt lord and master. But after our loving introduction in which we identify with this new Lord, he has taken on the close and dear look of one who is already part of us, closer than a brother, sister, or lover.

Come the third and fourth words.

If those two words had come first, there would have been a distance; cool, possibly insurmountable! We made the acquaintanceship the right way through a lovely being and beloved Lord whom, we now find, is the very same as the Almighty God, whom we did not know before because we had kept Him on a pedestal, high and dry and remote! Now we begin to suspect we ourselves are part of Him and He of us.

That mighty sun! Hot, beyond imagination, but its heat diffused so we can enjoy it and benefit from it — what a magnificent sign and symbol of the mighty Creator! So, also, thought many of the old-timers, who by scholars are now classified as “sun-worshippers” — a term encompassing a greater variety of wisdom, knowledge and maturity than our encyclopedia convey. In this morning prayer our magnificent sun becomes creature, creator — and self.

The air is what we find around the earth. It belongs to Earth, clothes earth in an evanescent veil which diffuses the sun rays, protects us and Earth from their stings and lets through what we need. The whole Earth is a sun dependency and the Earth is us and we are the Earth — more so than is often understood. More mighty suns and more dependent planets with vast spaces between them form the universe. The following words of the prayer are,

Yes, LIFE pervades all space and that life is creature and Creator. It created us and so we ask “through the rays of the sun, through the waves of the air, through the all-pervading LIFE in space, purify and revivify us and heal our bodies, hearts and souls…”
Even though we are in and of that LIFE, one with it; yet, at this point in the prayer we dualize ourselves and think of that LIFE IN SPACE as coming to us (even though we are it) and purify, revivify and heal us. It sometimes is a little easier to think of it that way. In fact, it is so much easier that most religions and their sects today think only in dual terms and have forgotten the next essential step for each one as he is ready — the step to THE ONE of which each of us is a part and, potentially, the whole.

Through this morning prayer that vital step has been brought back into use. From the first whispered “beloved”, one surrenders oneself to the creative forces and, in response, a flow of new, fresh life pours into you and “heals our bodies hearts and souls.” You know and feel that you are a new and whole man or woman.

(This commentary first appeared in Rainbow Bridge magazine, 1989.)

NAYAZ, revisited

(An inspired variation that came to Shamcher)

Beloved One,
Who plays in the rays of the Sun and through the waves of the air,
I see you
and I feel you
in Nature, in others, and in myself.

One thought on “Nayaz, an interpretation

  1. Nayaz revisited:
    It falls to each of us for our own benefit to go through a personalization process of the prayers of Inayat Khan as a way for us to claim the feelings for our selves, souls and bodies. This is one benefit of memorization because then one is able to use each line as a practice an exploration freely into deeper levels of being during meditative moments. As the feeling impinges upon us internally and touches the heart, perhaps then we find our own expression more harmoniously in daily life.

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