The aim of every individual in the end is the same; in the beginning, the aim of every individual is different. In the end, man comes to a stage when his object becomes the object of his soul, and as long as he has not arrived at this object, he has several objects before him. But the accomplishment of any motive is not satisfactory for long.

          According to the philosophy of the Hindus there are four motives in life. One motive is what they call 'Dharma,' which means 'duty.' There are some who consider that virtue lies in performing their duty and when they perform that particular duty, which is before them, they feel that that is the due accomplishment of their life. But if one duty is accomplished, another is waiting - life is full of duties. When a girl is young she says, "My mother, my father is my duty." Then a time comes when the pleasure of her husband is her duty; and as time goes on there is the duty of the mother towards the children. But even there it does not end - there comes the duty of the grandmother. There is no phase in life in which duty expires; it begins in one form and goes on in another.

           For the one who considers duty a pleasure, for him duty is a pleasure; for him who considers it a virtue, it is a virtue; but for one who considers duty a captivity or a pain, for him it is a pain. For one person it becomes a virtue, a privilege, for another a crime. In the Hindu language there exists the word 'Ardh,' which means the acquisition or collecting of wealth. It begins with the need of daily bread and it culminates in millions and is never finished. The more one has, the less one feels one has. The attainment of wealth is never fully satisfied - there is always a lack. And there comes a third motive which is pleasure. For this one neglects, one sacrifices - it is the main object in life. But, at the same time, pleasure is such a thing that this desire is never satisfied and the more one experiences the pleasure of this earth, the more there comes the desire to experience them. This pleasure is not lasting, and costs more, usually, that it is worth.

           And there is the fourth desire, which is of a different character, and that is for a kind of reward in the hereafter; for the attainment of a paradise; or reaching some bliss that one does not know. It is a desire for some kind of gain or happiness, bliss or exaltation which one does not know but hopes to experience one day. But even that, if it were vouchsafed, would not be fully satisfactory. From this the Sufi deduces, that in all these four different things that humanity is pursuing after, there is no stage where he can say it is finished - it has no end. Therefore his effort is to rise above these four different desires that humanity has. The moment he rises above these four desires, there comes only one desire, and that desire is the search for truth. Not only Sufis but every person disappointed in this world, who has been through a disillusionment, a suffering or a torture, has this only desire.

           The seeker after Truth goes out into the world and he finds so many sects and so many different religions, he does not know where to go. Then the desire is to find out what is hidden under these sects, these different religions; and therefore, he begins to seek that object which he wishes to gain through wisdom. Wisdom is a veil over the Truth; but Wisdom, even, cannot be called the Truth. God alone is Truth and it is Truth that is God. And Truth can be neither studied, nor taught, nor learned; it is to be touched; it is to be realized; and it can be realized by the unfoldment of the heart.

          For a Sufi belief in God is not sufficient. A belief which has no foundation underneath is just like a scrap of paper floating in the air; when there is no breeze it will fall to the ground. How many in this world, with all their belief, give it up when there is a strong influence in their surroundings of one who does not believe? If belief is such a thing which can be erased, then what use can this belief be really speaking, it is not only belief; the next step one takes after belief is the love of God. In the one who only believes in God, in him God is not living; in him who loves God, God is living. But even that is not sufficient. For what is human love? The human being is limited; his love is limited.

          The more one has seen in the world, the more one knows of human nature, the more one knows of the falsehood of human love. The one who cannot be constant to a human being, who is near him, how can he be true in his love for the Beloved, whom he as never seen? Therefore, even what man calls love of God is not sufficient. What is necessary is the knowledge of God. For it is the knowledge of God which gives the love for God, and it is the knowledge and love for God which gives a perfect belief in God'. No one can have the knowledge of God and have no love for God; but one can have a love for God and no knowledge of God. No one can have the knowledge of God, love for God, and no belief in God; but there can be someone who has a belief in God, but no love for God.

          Therefore, for a Sufi, these three stages are necessary for the attainment of his aim in life. In the first place, he attains by his belief, respect for the belief of others. A complete believer is he, who does not only believe in himself, but respects the beliefs of others. For a Sufi, in this world there is no one, neither heathen nor pagan, who is to be despised. For he believes in that God, who is not the God of one chosen sect, but the God of the whole world. He does not believe in a God of one nation, but of all nations. To him God is in all the different houses where people worship Him. Even if they stand in the street and pray, it makes no difference to him; that is the holy place, where he is worshipped. The Sufi leaves sectarianism to the sects. He has respect for all. He is not prejudiced against any, does not despise any; he feels sympathy for all.

          The idea of the Sufi is that the one who does not love his fellowman cannot love God. He thinks, as Christ has said, "love your neighbour; love your enemy." And what does it mean? It means not, "love him, because you consider him as your enemy," but "love him, because in God you are related to him." If humanity had believed in this simple and most valuable teaching, these wars would not have taken place. Is it the work of political people, to bring this home to men, or the work of commerce? No, it is the work of the church, of religion. But as long as the religious authorities will make of themselves a sect, and divide religion, and look upon each other with prejudice, this truth, brought by Christ, is not practised.

          We must know that every change that takes place in the multitude, in time comes among individuals. For instance, if two nations are against one another, opposed to one another, working to hurt one another, what will be the consequence? The result will be, that in the nations, there will be parties that will oppose each other; and then, there will come the same opposition in families; and you will see, that in time, this spirit will be found in a family of two people--two people living in the same house and both in conflict with each other. And where will it culminate? It will culminate in every individual being in conflict with himself.

          Where does the Sufi learn this? He learns it in the wisdom of God. The man who does not recognize God in His Creation never will recognize God in Heaven! It was all right for those simple believers in God and religion, who quietly went to church and said their prayers, and came back with a feeling of exaltation, and did not meddle with the world. But now the conditions have changed. Now there is a great battle between Truth and Life. The illusion of matter is in the fullness of the part it is performing in life. Therefore, there is a greater battle that life is fighting with Truth, than religion has ever had to fight. On one side science cries: matter, matter, matter! On the other side politics are crying: self, self, self-interest! The religions are crying: sect, sect, sect! And where could man stop to think of the ultimate Truth, which is the only thing that the soul seeks?

          The Sufi Message, therefore, has its mission, not for a particular race, nor for a particular nation, nor for a particular church. It is the call to unite in wisdom, which is sophia in the Greek words and which we call Sufi. The Sufi Movement is a group of people, belonging to different religions, who have not left their religions but have learned to understand them better; and their love is in life, as the love for God and humanity, instead of for a particular section. The principle work that the Sufi Movement has to accomplish is to bring about a better understanding between East and West and between the nations and races of this world.

          And the note that the Sufi message is striking at the present time is the note, which sounds the divinity of the human soul - to make human beings recognize the divinity in the human soul. If there is any moral principle that the Sufi Movement brings, it is this: that the whole humanity is as one body, and any organ of that body, hurt or troubled, can cause trouble to the whole body, indirectly. And as the health of the whole body depends on the health of each part, so the health of the whole humanity depends upon the health of every nation.  Besides this, to those who are awakening and feel that now is the moment; when they feel inclined to know about the deeper side of life, of truth; to them the Order extends a helping hand; without asking to what religion, sect, or dogma, they belong. The knowledge of the Sufi is helpful to every person, not only in living his life aright, but in his own religion. The Sufi Movement does not call man away from his belief or church - it calls man to live it. In short, it is a movement intended by God to unite humanity in brotherhood, in Wisdom.