This is a commonly cited set of ideas from one of my favorite Sufi saints, Hajji Bektash Veli. Though I am not myself a Bektashi, he is in many ways the Sufi saint I feel most connected with. I think this list is one of the most beautiful encapsulations of the Sufi path.
Principles of the Bektashi Path
• Seek and find.
• Whatever you do, do it for the Truth.
• There exists in you a “there is” to replace every “there isn't.”
• He who walks the Path never tires.
• There is no rank or station higher than the Friend's heart.
• The one who is wise but doesn't share his wisdom is ignorant.
• To the ignorant, abandoning what is no longer needed is death; to the wise it is birth.
• There is no repentance of repentance.
• Let your heart, your hand, and your table be open to others.
• Look for the key to all within your deepest being.
• Whatever you seek, look within.
• Do not forget your enemy is also a human being.
• The beauty of human beings is the beauty of their words.
• If the path appears dark, know that the veil is in your own eyes.
• All blessings upon the one who overlooks another's shortcomings.
• All blessings upon the one who makes a secret of secrets.
• The Word is Truth.
• Do not hurt others, even if you are hurt.
• Hand-in-hand, hand in Truth.
• One hour of meditation is better than seventy years of piety.
Other sayings attributed to Haji Bektash Veli include: - “The best book of all is the human being,” and - “Educate your women, a nation that doesn't educate its women cannot progress.”
Hu, Dost! This is my way of saying thank you for all of the gifts that my teacher, Sherif Baba, has given all of us.
I love the Ahl-ul Beyt, but I am not Shi'a, at least not in the usual sense. I love the Alevi way, but I am a mainstream practicing Muslim (or, at least, trying to be one). I love Mevlana, but I'm not a Mevlevi. I love some teachers who may or may not be very shari'ah adherent, but can open hearts. Several that I love most are practicing Muslims, but not all of their students are. I've even seen one or two Salafis who are dripping with the Nur of Allah. As a Bektashi Baba once said, if we find something useful, we embrace it. I'm a liberal, but practicing Muslim, and I believe that anyone who is showing us Compassion and Mercy is showing us the way of Islam.
May we all become beautiful human beings, insha'Allah! ;)
This is really putting up some things I put together for myself about my shaykh and our path-- a friend suggested that it might be helpful for some other people as well. I thought while I was at it, I might as well add some music links along the way. Because this began for my own personal use, I have no idea where some of these pictures and quotes came from, so I apologize for putting them up without citation. I make no claim that all of this is my own. I'm simply trying to share a beautiful vision of God and humanity that I have learned about from Sherif Baba and also some inspirations from the Alevi/Bektashi tradition of Turkey, with whom Rifa'i Marufi shares many principles. Let me make it clear that I am not myself a Bektashi, though I love their path. My connection is to the Rifa'i. I hope you enjoy this offering and that these things will inspire you as much as they have inspired me.