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The Mysterion (Seek the Sovereignty of non-existence)

~ Reading from UK Annual Retreat in Dorset

“The city of your dreams you found lacking nothing except noble men.”1 In a city where you find all the beauties, pleasures, delights and various adornments of nature, you won’t find an intelligent man. Would that it were the other way around! That city is the human being. If it has a hundred thousand accomplishments but not the intrinsic meaning, it would be better for it to be in ruins. If it does have the intrinsic meaning, no matter that it have no external embellishments. The mysterion must be there for it to flourish. In whatever state man may be, his mysterion is concerned with God, and his external preoccupations in no way hinder that inner concern. In whatever state a pregnant woman may be—war or peace, eating or sleeping—the baby is growing, is being strengthened, and is receiving sensations in her womb without her being aware of it. Mankind likewise is “pregnant” with that mysterion. But man undertook

[the faith]: truly he was unjust to himself, and foolish [33:72], but God does not leave him in his injustice and foolishness. If out of man’s apparent burden come companionship, sympathy, and a thousand acquaintances, then consider what marvelous friendships and acquaintances will issue out of the mysterion to which man gives birth after death. The mysterion is necessary in order for man to flourish. It is like the root of a tree: although it is hidden from view, its effects are apparent on the branches. Even if one or two branches break off, when the root is strong the tree will continue to grow. If, however, the root suffers damage neither branch nor leaf will survive.

[Discourses of Rumi (Fihi ma Fihi): Discourse 50]

1 The line of poetry is quoted by Rumi, with slight variance, from the Diwan of al-Mutanabbi, p. 93.

Selcuk Gurez, Mevlevi master musician and semazen, with Shaikh Kabir at our UK annual retreat.

Selcuk Gurez, Mevlevi master musician and semazen, with Shaikh Kabir at our UK annual retreat.



Under the Mantle of the Beloved’s Veil

~ Offering from Shaikha Camille at Dorset retreat


Stay close,
under the mantle of Your veil;
is not meant
for everyone,
but Mary drew herself
aside into Your Sanctuary,
beyond the intimations
of family,
that she might know
Your Heart.
Opened wide,
her heart was,
where no one saw,
not even
Fruits of love
fully formed
from the Garden
of Your Love,
even in the cold
of winter.
Come close,
and closer still
behind the veil
of this existence,
where Prophets gather
in the Orchard
to hear
Your discourse
coursing through
the ears of their hearts,
as they bend
to the Ground
of Your Being
and catch Your vibration
through their feet,
their limbs,
and hair
cascading in rivulets
down into this atmosphere.
Glories, Glories,
Hu Ana,
in the Highest,
Ya Rabbil al Ameen!
Ya Sami,
Ya Alim,
Ya Basir.


September Theme

Adorn yourself with good nature and Allah will ease your account. ~ Imam Ali

We welcome your reflections on this theme.


UNVEILING THE DIVINE: Honouring the Sacred Feminine

Kendal, UK
October 14-16, 2016

with Elizabeth Anne Hin, Fatimah Ashrif, 
Tania Henzell-Thomas, Rabia Malik and others

Threshold Society through Rumi’s Circle are holding a weekend gathering to honour the Sacred Feminine, and dedicate the event to our beloved teacher, Shaikha Camille Helminski.

Join us for a weekend honouring the Sacred Feminine through spiritual conversation, heart reflections, meditation, prayer, music and movement. We are blessed to offer this gathering in the beautiful setting of Kendal in the Lake District, with its rich spiritual heritage and long tradition of social activism. The weekend includes a Sacred Music concert with the sublime voices of Latif Bolat and Zeliha Akdan, with whirling dervishes.

We believe that deep respect and harmony between the masculine and feminine principles of existence is necessary for the wellbeing of communities and society as a whole. The present imbalance is reflected in the increasing sexualisation of women and young people and in structures which continue to favour male biology and perspective. These are damaging not only to women but also to men. We trust that human beings should be free to discover and determine for themselves what it means to be male and female. We begin by reconnecting to the Sacred Feminine.

We aim to create an inclusive and safe space which encourages authentic and open enquiry into these issues. Our speakers hail from different faith backgrounds with experience of working at various levels within, and for, communities. Participants will be invited to reflect on and share what the Feminine means to them, and consider how this understanding might be integrated into their own lives, work, and beyond.

Fri-Sun: £130
(accommodation not included)

More details about the range of speakers, the programme and to register your place: unveilingthedivine.com


Living Tradition 01

Threshold’s collaborative blog channel The Living Tradition on Patheos.com is reaching new audiences and sharing the experiences of our community in a unique and vibrant way.

Let us know what you think by commenting on the posts — join the discussion at www.patheos.com/blogs/livingtradition and “follow” The Living Tradition.

Recent articles:


Women of Sufism study group

women-of-sufismFriends of the Threshold community are invited to a study group to read and discuss Women of Sufism: A Hidden Treasure, Writings and Stories of Mystic Poets, Scholars, and Saints by Shaikha Camille Helminski.

The book has been split into segments to be studied over six months. At the start of each month we will post an invitation for you to offer reflections. See the website for more details, guidelines and access to the monthly discussion posts.

The password to access the discussion posts is khadija.

See the Resource page for the recording of the community call last month and an excerpt from Shaikha Camille’s poetry collection Words from the East.

“Thank you Aliaa R Rafea and Aisha Rafea – and for the reminder for the Mercy of our Prophets – the Mercy of striving and to read my own book. I loved the walk into Hagga Zakiyya arms – surprised to feel the embrace of a mother.”
~ Uzma Taj

Join the discussion: womenofsufism.com

The monthly breakdown of the book has now completed – we will continue the discussion to allow people to catch-up and re-reflect on previous chapters.




Oct 14-16: Kendal, UK. Unveiling the Divine: Honouring the Sacred Feminine. With Elizabeth Hin, more details.

Oct 20-23: San Jose, US. Science & Non-Duality Conference; Shaikh Kabir will lecture on Spiritual Perception. www.scienceandnonduality.com(K)

Dec 13-17: Konya/Ankara, Turkey. Shaikh Kabir will speak at the Celebrations for Rumi’s Urs. Other guests include Cemalnur Sargut & Omid Safi.  (K)


Feb 24-26: San Francisco, US. Mercy Center Retreat.  (KC)

May 5-9: Paradise Island, Bahamas. Meditation Symposium at the Sivananda Ashram. Sivananda.org  (KC)

July 7-9: Whistler, Canada.  Annual Retreat British Columbia, deep in nature, following Ramadan.  (KC)

Events with Sh. Kabir and Sh. Camille marked (KC)


The recent UK Annual Retreat in Dorset

Dorset Retreat Group Photo

Dede and Selcuk Dorset Retreat


Excerpt from Exaltations

~ Shaikha Camille Adams Helminski ~

Ya Malik al Quddus

Your clouds
are moving fast this morning,
stirred by Your breath,
to gather quickly
in Your Presence.
We are summoned
to activity
by the force of a new day
for rectifying
all our actions,
Why wait?
We might miss the opportunity
to see You
in everything we do.
Open our eyes,
Ya Malik al Quddus.
O Sovereign, Most Pure.
Holy breath enlivens us.
Your sight restores our seeing.
Your touch guides our hands
into giving.
We reach
beneath the carpet
of this existence to the Source,
of Your Infinite Treasure.
There is no lack,
only shortsightedness in the extent
of the offering from our hands,
and feet that would run out
into the street of Your Love
with full loaves
of Your baking
in the ovens of bliss.
Fish still swim in Your seas;
let us treat them well
and not pollute Your waters
with our greed.
Hand over hand we weave
the nets to catch
the sustenance
You continually provide.
May we share
in every moment
the sweetness
of Your Love.

~ Love’ville, August 2016


We’d love to hear from you – get in touch at eyeoftheheart@sufism.org


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