The urge towards mysticism – the urge to experience a dimension beyond the material world, to know and to return to a spiritual Essence or Truth – is inherent within every person, irrespective of his or her religion…’‘. If Sufism is defined as mystical or the way of the mystic, then its message addresses all peoples, not just the followers of one religion. Every faith has its own Sufism. In every nation and community there have been Sufis, although they have taken different names and adopted varying practices.’
– Hazrat Azad Rasool (r.a.) in Turning Towards the Heart: Awakening to the Sufi Way (Forty Questions and Answers). Published by Fons Vitae, 2002.
These short quotes, written by Hazrat Azad Rasool (r.a.) the founder of the School of Sufi Teaching, are a direct reminder to us of the inner urge that we all have, despite the religious diversity of the world, for a true understanding and knowledge which can only be found by simultaneously looking within and toward the Divine.
Sufism has developed a number of forms of meditation and practices over the last thousand years that are directed towards an individual’s Heart (that most subtle of organs through which an individual’s spiritual development may be accomplished). Sufi meditation is both practical and proven to awaken the Heart to a deeper understanding of intuition in the practitioner. It also offers profound insights into both spiritual and worldly matters that enable us to begin to see all things in their true perspective. Sufi practices open us to new ways of thinking – freeing us from anxieties and fears – offering a greater sense of happiness and tranquillity.
Today’s fast-paced and materially oriented world acts as a challenge to us to balance the demands of everyday life with the fulfillment of our inner yearnings. Many choices are available in the pursuit of knowledge. Among these the teachings of Sufism, as transmitted through a chain of authorized teachers, offer a way to lead life in this world within the context of a comprehensive spiritual framework. The Naqshbandî-Mujaddidî line of masters, in particular, has considered the need for practical techniques that can be integrated into our daily life, within the family and in the work place, and that are applicable to the social responsibilities we all have. Their teachings are as relevant to seekers of different aptitudes and natures in our contemporary world, as they have been to seekers for generations. It is only by the blessings of respected Shaykhs across the centuries that those Sufi teachings have endured.
About the School of Sufi Teaching
The School of Sufi Teaching is a branch of the Institute of Search for Truth and was founded in New Delhi, India in 1975 by Hazrat Azad Rasool (r.a.). At that time Shaykh Hazrat Azad Rasool (r.a.) noticed the numbers of people from the West visiting India in a quest for spiritual advancement. He also noticed that these individuals often found it difficult to find a trustworthy spiritual guide. The School was, as a consequence, set up to help give true and safe guidance to those wishing to follow the spiritual path. Hazrat Azad Rasool (r.a.) worked tirelessly as director of the School and as Shaykh of the Order right up until his death spreading the Sufi message across the world, and in particular in the West. Since his death in 2006 the School has come under the leadership of his son (and deputy or khalifa), Shaykh Hamid Hasan, who is working with equal vigour and commitment to extend access to the School’s teachings across the world. The School now has branches around the globe, with students from Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, India, Italy, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Oman, Pakistan, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Tunisia, Turkey, UK, USA and Uzbekistan.
The School’s teachings and practices are based upon five main Sufi Orders of the Naqshbandî, Mujaddidî, Chistî, Qâdirî and Shîdhilî, but place a special emphasis on those of the Mujaddidî Order. Shaykh Hamid Hasan who now leads the Institute of Search for Truth and the School of Sufi Teaching, provides initiation and guidance to those who wish to follow the path of Sufism.
The School of Sufi Teaching established a branch in Lancashire in 2012 and has, since that time, helped to introduce and guide interested individuals through the School’s effective and incremental series of practices in meditation.
To help individuals along the spiritual path we offer:
- Yearly UK Group Retreats and International Retreats
- A set of ten preliminary practices that focus on the ten centres of consciousness
- Regular group meetings for meditation and introductions into the School’s practices
- An opportunity to receive instruction in meditation and personal guidance from the Shaykh during his yearly visits to the UK
- Yearly UK Group Retreats and International Retreats
Come and join our regular group of meditators on Thursday evenings to experience the benefits of Silent Sufi Meditation.
We will begin with a short explanation on how to do the meditation practices of our group for the benefit of newcomers, and then sit together in meditation. Following this we will have tea and a chance to meet some more experienced students.
Please arrive by 7.00pm so as to benefit from a short introductory talk specifically designed for newcomers to these practices.
The meditation will start promptly at 7.30pm. We would ask that if anyone arrives later than 7.30pm that they keep all noise down to a minimum (including opening/closing of doors) so as to ensure as much as possible a undisturbed period of solitude.
We look forward to sitting in meditation with you
We meet regularly on Thursdays at the Burnley and Pendle Faith Centre. It will be great to see you there.