We often view death as something frightening and sad, and in some way
it is. But there is always many ways of looking at things and I
thought it was worth sharing that experience for everybody has to
face death at some time in their life. And it remains for me a very
special and powerful experience; I don't have the words to name it
exactly. In the following year, I always tried not to indulge in self-
pity, when sadness would come I would chase it by telling myself that
it would be selfish to be sad for my mother was certainly happier
now, freed from bondage.
As Jogyata mentioned facing death brings you back to the essential,
and the following year I was really dissatisfied with my life. I had
the feeling that I was going backward, not making any spiritual
progress. I quitted my job and I moved to a new city in a hope of a
new life. I found more than I had ever expected by becoming Sri
Now what difference does it makes to come from a Muslim background
compare to a Christian one?
A spontaneous answer would be none, we all struggle with the same
things no matter where we come from. We all have learned what is good
and what is bad in different ways and we all have to go beyond that
to see the Truth. So it does not depend on if we are Jewish or
Christian or even atheist but how many things we have to unlearn to
be more open to the Truth.
I am, however, maybe not a good representative of Muslims (if a good
representative exists). My parents were believers but they did not
practice their five daily prayers. My whole family was not
very `religious', except for my grand-parents in my mother side, who
were practising daily and went in pilgrimage to the Mecca I think
twice in their life. I still have a photo of them all in white when
they came back.
My father was the one who did my religious education, the one who
introduced me to Sufism. He is very good at teaching. I learned some
surats (chapter of the Koran) with him Arabic is quite an
interesting language (not that I know very much about it, I hardly
speak it) every word comes from a root (I think there is about 200
roots if my memory is good) which is usually 3 consonants and has a
special function represented by specific vowels and consonants, I
don't know if what I am saying is clear but the Arabic grammar is
quite simple so we were going back to the origin of the word
exploring the different interpretations. My father was (and still is)
a great admirer of Ibn Arabi.
For info on Ibn Arabi :
The philosophy of Ibn Arabi was beyond my reach at that time but I
enjoyed Rumi's poetry and tales from the Masnavi and other Sufi,
Arabic, Berber and wherever tales. But also Dostoevsky, Mahfouz,
Zweig, Zola and many others
Those are not spiritual books but a good
introduction on human beings.
I learned early that religion is God, and that it does not matter
which way you take to approach the Truth. I also learned that the
essence is more important than the form. By that I also mean that
inner discipline is more important than outer discipline. Later on I
discovered that outer discipline was nevertheless indispensable and a
spiritual master of great help to approach the Truth. So the jump to
Sri Chinmoy's path was not very large and relatively easy to do.
Of course there are still many things I have to unlearn and I am very
grateful to Sri Chinmoy for all the new dimensions he had opened in
--- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com
> I liked this story very much too. I think it takes a lot of courage
> type in something like that and send it away off down the phone
> where anyone can read it.
> It's also nice to hear a perspective from a student of Sri Chinmoy
> comes from a Muslim background; there have been many posts on this
> group from students talking about having a Christian background and
> being a student of Sri Chinmoy at the same time. At the moment I
> job putting leaflets into letterboxes (for a pizza company) and I'm
> working with about 15 Malaysian students. I've officially decreed
> Malaysia to be the Second Best Country in the World after Ireland.
> pleasant people to talk to - no office gossiping, no sniping, no
> backstabbing, just sweet peaceful dispositions no matter what
> It's almost like being in a Divine Enterprise.
> They're all practising Muslims, but its not like something they
> out to all and sundry - in this crazy city, they've somehow mastered
> the art of going away to pray without anyone noticing (much the
> my patented techniques for getting in a much needed minute's
> in a crowd without drawing anyone's attention). They all assume I'm
> Catholic, and ask me loads of questions about Church teachings
> try to drag out from childhood memory. There's this real sense of
> openness, a sense that they're confident enough in their own path to
> ask and not be defensive. It's a far cry from the usual media
> of Islam.
> To be one-pointed in your own path, yet to be able to give and take
> inspiration from the world. To the mind, this is a paradox, but to
> --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, vasanti_hd
> <no_reply@> wrote:
> > Meriem, thank you for sharing this very personal story with us.
> > beautiful to be able to experience the death of a loved one in
> > spiritual context.
> > Guru's song "Janma mrityu hasi kanna" is very powerful, like
> > very powerful statement chasing bad spirits and feelings of
> > dejection or despair away, with staccato-like footfalls in the
> > beginning for the opposites of birth and death, smiles and tears,
> > then becoming playful with "abhinoy", then kind of fearless
> > for the unconquerable soul again, downwards (netherworlds?), only http://admin.srichinmoysongs.com/s_/songs/03/ckgsong456505103/ckgsong4
> > to go up and fly and dissolve in sweetest bliss in the end!
> > Vasanti
> > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, meriem_ao
> > <no_reply@> wrote:
> > >
> > > It is not a joy story, but it is not a sad one neither. It is a
> > soul
> > > story.
> > >
> > > It was a Friday, August, 31 2001. Rue d'Ulm in Paris, in a
> > > hospital, near the Panthï¿½on (a mausoleum for the remains of
> > > Frenchmen) and the Luxembourg Gardens. My mother had been in a
> > > the whole day. She was still fighting to stay alive, she had
> > > difficulty to breath. She had lost all her physical strength in
> > that
> > > two year fight against cancer.
> > >
> > > I could not leave the room that day; something compelled me to
> > > with her. I remember whispering in her ear: "Mum, you can go,
> > > worry for us, just go peacefully". I knew she could hear me.
> > she
> > > could, indeed, for half an hour later she was gone.
> > >
> > > I will always remember that moment. I was near the bed holding
> > > hand. Mounira was on the other side of the bed near the wall.
> > was
> > > reading out loud the 99 Names of God in Arabicï¿½ An Noor, Al
> > > (The Light, The Guideï¿½); creating a holy atmosphere. My
> > > suddenly opened her eyes; she looked at me for a fleeting
> > She
> > > was telling me that she was leaving. Her look was peaceful and
> > the
> > > same time questioning. I smiled at her; I knew God would take
> > of
> > > her. Her body jolts quite a few times as if the soul had
> > > get out and just when Mounira pronounced the last Name of God,
> > > soul left the body. At this exact moment, my father entered the
> > room
> > > in panic as if he knew what was happening.
> > >
> > > She was now above us probably looking at us. My father was
> > to
> > > bring her to life; Mounira was crying silently; I don't know
> > my
> > > two brothers were. Her body seemed relieved; I could even see a
> > > slight smile on her face.
> > >
> > > God Hour had strike. It was a Friday, at 6.00 pm.
> > >
> > > She was buried a few days later in Bouzareah, near Algiers
> > (Algeria)
> > > with her mother, as she wanted.
> > >
> > > In June of the following year, I went with my father to visit
> > > grave. The cemetery is on the top of a hill. It is a simple and
> > > modest cemetery with very few spaces between the graves, and
> > > nice view on the horizon. It was a Friday, the day of prayer in
> > > Muslim countries and as we entered the cemetery we could hear
> > > the mosque the muezzin singing a part of a surat (chapter of
> > > Koran) that my mother really liked before she died. She used to
> > read
> > > it with my father and she once asked him to stop for it was too
> > much
> > > Light, more Light than she could handle. A little cat was near
> > > grave looking at us.
> > >
> > > I am glad she was able to feel God's Light before she died and
> > > glad I had the privilege to be with her for that special moment.
> > >
> > > "Janna mrityu hasi kanna
> > > Eto shudhu abhinoy
> > > Atma chira abhoy ajoy
> > > Satya sathi sudhamoy."
> > >
> > > This is a song composed by Sri Chinmoy, here is the traduction:
> > >
> > > "Birth and death, smiles and tears
> > > Are a mere play.
> > > The soul is an eternally fearless and unconquerable
> > > Bliss-flooded companion."
> > >
> > > I am infinitely grateful to my mother for the love and
> > she
> > > constantly gave us. She was quick to forgive and forget and was
> > > cheerful sacrifice for her children. I am also grateful for the
> > trust
> > > she had in me in any circumstances, she once told me: "a peace
> > > gold even if cover with dirt remains a peace of gold."
> > >
> > > Gratefully,
> > > Meriem
> > >