From Jim Arthur “Jim”
These fascinating letters were how Sufi mystical teachings were transmitted between Bryn Beorse and his young student Carol Sill.
Who was Bryn Beorse?
Bryn Beorse worked his way through sixty-seven countries as an engineer, banker, economist, seaman, jackaroo, soldier, airman, king-maker, kidnapper of a head of state, and United Nations mission head. He has studied Yoga from age eight and Sufism, with Hazrat Pir-O-Murshid Inayat Khan (who brought Sufism to the West), for many years.
Bryn Beorse advised in the Kennedy Whitehouse, and later served as a Naval architect for the U.S. government.
He brought together, in his own being, spirit and science, student and teacher, master and novice, even seeker and sought.
Who is Carol Sill?
When the letters start, Carol Sill is a young mother who has lost her son to a tragic accident. Seeking healing from the pain and grief of her loss, she reaches out to a stranger, who might give her spiritual resources to survive.
What Are The Letters Like?
Bryn Beorse had a practice to keep every letter short. Usually 1 typed page or less. The letters start with giving Carol some simple and powerful meditation practices, along with practical advice.
You can feel the intensity of the yearning student, and the power of the old man, sharing a lifetime’s esoteric teachings, one short page at a time.
If you have heard the word Sufi, and wondered what it’s all about, then this book is a wonderful introduction to Sufism.
If you have never heard the word Sufi, then perhaps these words will help.
“Sufism, as a religious philosophy of love, harmony, and beauty, aims at expanding the soul of man until the realization of the beauty of all creation enables him to become as perfect an expression of divine harmony as possible. It is therefore natural that the Sufi Order should stand foremost as a spiritual power in the East, and that it is rapidly becoming recognized in the West.”
“Many Sufi saints have attained what is known as God Consciousness, which is the most all-inclusive realization of the meaning of the word ‘good’ attainable by man. Strictly speaking, Sufism is neither a religion nor a philosophy; it is neither theism nor atheism, but stands between the two and fills the gap.”
If anybody asks you, “What is Sufism? What religion is it?”, you may answer, “Sufism is the religion of the heart, the religion in which the most important thing is to seek God in the heart of mankind.”
from The Religious Gathekas by Hazrat Inayat Khan
What is Sufism? It is… the art through which the music and symphony of life can be preserved, and through which man can enable himself to become the proper servant of God and humanity.
from The Sufi Message of Hazrat Inayat Khan, The Art of Being, Part I
This letter book is in many ways a unique experience …. the training of a Sufi mystic in a unique way.
And, in other ways, it’s universal. It shows a heart yearning for healing and happiness, and the path that she (Carol) found that gave her healing, happiness, and spiritual connection to the Divine in simple and surprising ways.
I loved this book, and I suspect you will too.