‘There is One Holy Book, the sacred manuscript of nature,

the only scripture which can enlighten the reader.’

Although in essence, even after touching the deepest depths of the earth, the soul is divine, in order to realize for itself that Divine Element it has a task waiting even after being human. It is the manner in which that task is accomplished, and the object gained which is called Ziraat.

    — Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan

Ziraat was the last of the five concentrations inspired and created by Hazrat Inayat Khan. It utilizes a ceremony based on the symbology of farming, to represent the unity between the inner work of spiritual realization and stewardship and reverence for life. Its teachings pertain to the purification and training of the mind, the balance of the two aspects of breath, jelal (masculine) and jemal (feminine) and the honouring of the elements. There is also a message about the need to protect the message and sow it even though we are not destined to reap the harvest.

The Ziraat is an initiatic movement open to all.

Ziraat emphasizes service to restore the harmony between heaven and earth, inside and outside. Ziraat serves the restoration of the earth and is somehow mysteriously linked to insuring that the waters of awakening reach all the fields of the earth, irrespective of any differences of religion, race or national boundaries.

The poet Rumi says: ” God slept in the mineral, dreamt in the plant, became conscious in the animal and awoke in the human”. The fulfilment of the human being– and the only solution to the present crisis on our planet– is for us to awaken to and live in the truth of our divine nature. The work of Ziraat is the inner purification and cultivation of the soul, heart and mind. By this process, the layers of impressions, beliefs, prejudices and fears that cover the light of the soul are removed. As we restore to the natural self and to the mind in its essence, our beings become as fertile soil receptive to the light of Divine guidance. Aligning with Divine intention, conscience and consciousness unite, and we become sowers of, love, harmony and beauty. The perfected human blossoms in fruitfulness to the divine ray in all life. We respond to the call to become mature gardeners of both our inner being and of our planet. Through Ziraat, we realize the fullness of the soul’s freedom — not by leaving the world behind but by service to the life around us.

Thou changest my flesh into fertile soil; Thou turnest my blood into streams of water; Thou kneadest my clay, I know, to make a new universe.

    — Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan

— Sharifa Norton, Head of the Ziraat Concentration


Original source: Sufi Order International North America