Universal Worship


We have scriptures on our altar, more for the principle than for the study. By keeping the scriptures there we set an example of tolerance towards different religions and of our belief that wisdom comes from all sources. Therefore the discussion and arguments over questions, why this scripture and why not another, is of no importance, for it must be known that if the divine scriptures had been kept always authentic, there would not have been so much need for another scripture. But for this reason and for another reason, that is, to give to the world the needed message for the time, the Message has been sent time after time.

    — Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan

The Universal Worship represents an ideal put forth by Hazrat Inayat Khan in 1921 to bring all of the world’s religions together in order to promote tolerance, understanding and spiritual awakening for humanity. We offer a prayer service, kindling lights for the world’s religions and all of the prophets who have come to earth to further the experience of love by human beings. The service often uses music and meditation to connect the participants with their inner state.

Honouring and protecting the holy scriptures of every faith without judgement or prejudice is a foundation of the Universal Worship. There are ordained ministers called Cherags (“lamps”), women and men, who facilitate the Universal Worship service and who are empowered to perform weddings, receiving infants, funerals and many other duties.

The Universal Worship is also a catalyst to bring together clergy and people of all religions in interfaith events. The Universal Worship is celebrated in many countries of the world both East and West. Hazrat Inayat Khan has averred that the Universal Worship will be the vehicle to bring forth the understanding and experience of love, harmony and beauty to the world.

Original source: Sufi Order International North America