It was Rinzai who took the flower of Zen away from China to Japan. He transmitted the spirit of Zen to the Japanese language, and not only to the language but to the culture itself, to flower arrangement, to pottery, to gardening and whatnot. One man, one single man, transformed the whole life of a nation.
Seventh: The seventh is not an enlightened man like Rinzai, but very close. Hazrat Inayat Khan, the man who introduced Sufism to the West. He did not write a book, but all his lectures have been collected into twelve volumes. Here and there they are beautiful. Forgive me, I cannot say they are all beautiful, but here and there, once in a while, particularly when he is talking about a Sufi story, he is beautiful.
He was also a musician; in that way he was really a maestro. He was not a master in the spiritual world, but in the world of music he certainly was. But once in a while he flew to the spiritual, he rose beyond the clouds…to fall back with a thud, of course. He must have suffered from…Devaraj, what do you call it? Multi-fracture? Multiple fractures, perhaps that’s the right word.
Eighth: The son of Hazrat Inayat Khan. His name is well known to the seekers in the West: Hazrat Vilayat Ali Khan. He is a beautiful man. He is still living. The father is dead – Vilayat is alive, and when I say alive I really mean it – not only breathing…breathing of course, but not only breathing. All his books are also included hereby. Vilayat Ali Khan is also a musician, just like his father, only of a higher quality, of a greater depth. He is more profound…and – listen to this pause – more silent too.
Ninth: Again I want to include another book by Kahlil Gibran, Jesus, the Son of Man. It is one of the books which is almost ignored. Christians ignore it because it calls Jesus the son of man. They not only ignore it, they condemn it. And of course, who else cares about Jesus? If Christians themselves are condemning him, then nobody else cares about it.
Kahlil Gibran is a Syrian from very close to Jerusalem. In fact in the hills of Syria, people – a few people at least – still speak Aramaic, the language of Jesus. Amid those high-reaching cedars, anyone, even a fool, is bound to be amazed, mystified. Kahlil Gibran was born in Syria under the cedars reaching towards the stars. He comes very close in representing the real man Jesus – closer than the four so-called disciples who wrote the gospels. They are more gossips than gospels. Kahlil Gibran is closer, but Christians were angry because he calls Jesus the son of man. I loved the book.