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It is good to concentrate together on the six different parts of the Element Ritual.
I The first part of the Element Ritual is:
ENTRANCE OF THE MEN (JELALS)
The entrance of the Men happens in the 4-Step; the Wazifa of the Men is
"Bis mil lah al-Ham dulil lah", which means: All reverence belongs to the Creator;
In the procession of the Men, the Element Ether is represented as the first Element, on entering the Temple-space, followed one after the other by the Elements: Air, Fire, Water and Earth. This expresses the change from spirit into matter;
The first Man of the Element carries the candle, the Men behind him have the attitude of Respect;
The Posture of the Man without a candle is the one of Respect;
The right underarm on top of the left underarm, crossed before the breast. In this Posture the Power (right) protects the Feeling (left);
In this Procession the candle with the Light, present in every Element, is placed near the God-Light in the middle of the Temple-space;
When each has reached his place, the Invocation is said together:
"We invoke the Presence of God", followed by the greeting of the Elements, three times, one to the other. This greeting of the Elements one to the other represents the harmony that is present in the Creation.
II The second part of the Element Ritual is:
THE ENTRANCE OF THE WOMEN (JEMALS)
With this the change from matter into spirit is expressed. Everything within Creation comes from God and returns back to Him;
Everything in Creation needs the cooperation of male and female in order to develop fully. According to the view of the mystics the male aspect (Jelal) represents Power, the creative Power, and the female aspect: love, reception and beauty. Sometimes Jelal is too powerful, which leads to destruction. Also Jemal, Jemal may be too weak to allow something to happen. But when the Jelal- and Jemal-powers are used in balance, the work is constructive and leads to success. Both in the work of the Creator and the individual Love is the only Power that creates and produces fulfilment;
The Steps of the Women and Men are older than the time of the prophet Zoroaster;
Following one another the Women of the Elements enter: Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Ether. Matter evaluates to spirit: all that has been created comes from God and returns to Him;
The First Woman of the Element carries the Offering. The Element is offered a gift from its own nature. The Women attune themselves to the Element;
The Women behind the First Woman have taken on the Posture of their Element. This shows the unity with their own Element.
During the Procession the Wazifa's are pronounced. When one of the names of God is repeated a certain number of times, it brings about the forgetting of the self;
With the pronunciation of the Sura's the attunement during the Offering is on the qualities of the Elements. These are with Earth: fruitfulness and humility; with Water: purification and willingness; with Fire: destruction and truthfulness; with Air: all pervading and Joyfulness; with Ether: the Only Being in all and adaptability;
The Wazifa of the Earth is Jelal-Jemal: the male and female aspects. The Wazifa of Water is Latifa: the flowing. The Wazifa of Fire is Allah hu Akbar: God is great. The Wazifa of Air is Ya Shafee-Ya Kafee: Healing God-All sufficient god. The Wazifa of Ether is Ishq Allah Ma Budh Allah: God is Love, Lover and Beloved;
Through a continual attunement on the qualities of the Elements in thought, speech and action, harmony is formed in the real self. Only when the soul is in harmony with his surroundings, can the soul experience peace, which is the utter goal of the human being.
III The third part of the Element Ritual is:
THE EXPERIENCE OF THE ELEMENTS
The First Man of each Element, (following one another: Earth, Water, Fire and Air) goes in the 4-Step to the Gods candle and says the Wazifa: "Bismillah al Hamdulillah". With this the agent of the Jelal-power offers his homage to the Creator;
During the raising of the Light of each Element, the Man repeats several times the Sura of that Element. The Man attunes himself to the qualities of the Element. The Jelal-powers are united with the Elements through this;
The Women experience their Element on the five different tones. Through this experience the partakers realise, that they are a part of the Universe. They forget the 'ego' and are one with the Element. The Jemal-powers form a perfect unity with their Element. The heart is like a cover that covers the Light of the soul. The different emotions of the heart form the colours of the cover. Every emotion is raised by a certain Element. When the experiences of life are a reality to him, the soul thinks at that moment: "I am sad, happy, afraid or funny". In reality is this the experience of a moment;
After the experience the Women take up the posture of their Element. When the influence of a certain Element is finished, the emotion ebbs away, and the soul is just pure as before. The soul realises: ''what I thought myself to be, I was not, but it was my experience. I myself am the source, the traveller and the goal of life";
The Man goes backwards back to his place and repeats thereby the Wazifa. All honour and reverence are due to the Creator;
At the experience of the Ether-element the First Ether-man and the First Men of the other Elements go in the 4-Step to the God light and repeat out loud the Wazifa 'Bismillah al Hamdulillah '. The five Men raise their candles and repeat then -together- the Sura of the Ether-element. The Ether experience of the Women follows. In the Ether-element all Elements come together. The Jelal- and the Jemal-powers are now in harmony with the Elements;
The Men put at the same time down their candles, walk three times in the 4-Step left-turn round the God Light and say aloud their Wazifa. The Men return at the same moment back to the place of their Element. The soul knows, that he can use the everlasting Powers that live in himself, if he learns to control them. Hazrat Inayat Khan says about this: "Man is master of life, here and in the hereafter".
IV The fourth part of the Element Ritual is:
THE CACOPHONY OF TONES
At the place of each Element the different Elements sing one after the other: "A" (like Allah), "O", "I" (EE), "U" (Dutch pronunciation of Utrecht) and "U" (through);
Each time after five seconds the next Element joins in and holds its Tone;
After the "U" Tone of the Ether-element all Elements sing together: "U,U,U,U" (about ten seconds);
Matter changes into spirit. All levels of existence are filled with vibrations, from the most fine to the most gross. "The man who knows the secret of the vibrations, knows all things", says Hazrat Inayat Khan;
Movement is not possible without bringing vibrations into motion. The Elements consist both out of vibrations and of atoms. Every movement of vibration brings about a certain sound in unison with the form in which the sound is made. Colours and sounds are the results of the Elements
- the big Powers- and have their influence upon the human soul;
A fine soul is touched by colours and a still finer soul by sounds;
Tone, in relation to the Element to which they belong, have either a warm or a cold effect. For this reason a sound can make either an agreeable or a disagreeable influence on the body and the spirit. The tones of the Elements have a healing effect and often they make the use of herbs and medicine unnecessary. This healing effect comes from the vibrations of the five Elements;
One vibration brings about an innumerable number of other vibrations. This shows the idea that behind all movements in the whole Creation there is only one Cause. The Hindu-word Nada Brahma means Sound, the Creator, God. The Element Ritual is an ode to the Creator of Heaven and Earth.
V The fifth part of the Element Ritual is:
The Men stand in the Posture of Respect on the circle and the Women stand in the Posture of their Element;
After bowing lower than the heart and turning to the left in the Posture of Respect, the Men bring their arms upwards, like a rose opening;
The head is turned towards the left, while the eyes look over the opened right hand;
The right hand is receiving (with the palm upwards) and the left hand is giving (with the palm downwards) both as high as the head. Turning is done by putting the right foot over the left foot;
During the whirling the name of Allah is in thought repeated on the earth-breathing;
The Women follow at the same time from the Posture of their Element, which after bowing lower than the heart and turning once in the Posture of Respect, opens up in the Posture of the whirling;
The Men and the Women whirl now together (the Men on the circle and the Women within the circle).
It is known that at a certain moment Jelal-ud-Din Rumi was so moved by the thought, that the whole of life is one single expression of beauty in movement and rhythm, that he began turning around. While he was circling before the eyes of his pupils, the skirt of his robe widened during the whirling, which had a most beautiful effect. This happening made such an overwhelming impression on his pupils, that the memory of this is still being celebrated.
During the turning a total silent point in the centre of your body is formed. Open yourself up as a channel in the knowledge that nothing exist save He, during the dancing. You can than experience that the universe is turning around that point. If you are calm during the whirling and you give your emotion and thoughts totally over to God, then you open yourself to the Divine Light. The attitude of silent surrender makes His Light stream through you to the earth. (from your right, receiving hand to your left giving hand). The dance is for God and the Creation. Jesus said: "Unless you dance, you won't know what will happen".
VI The sixth part of the Element Ritual is:
The Jelals and the Jemals (men and women) walk in the Posture of Respect around behind the leader. The Jemals say the Wazifa: "Al Ham dulil lah" and the Jelals join in on the syllables: "Al....lah";
The right foot begins on the syllable: "Al", the left foot on the syllable: "lah";
On the Wazifa the Elements walk at the same distance behind the leader out of the hall;
The meaning of the Wazifa: "Al Ham dulil lah is: Homage to God.
In the East Wazifa's are pronounced at the beginning, in the middle and also at the end of daily conversations. This tunes the believer and also the unbeliever to the thought of God. The pronouncing of a Wazifa helps one to forget the ego and brings the seeker of God to self-realisation. It is the soul-realised man who stands above all matter. In this way spirit conquers matter. In conditions of life, that are the cause of confusion and darkness, the soul-realised man sees the Light. For him, each being, either of higher or of lower degree of development, is just another different form of God's Inner Being. The man who has probed the depth of life's mystery becomes God-realised. If he no longer has his limited self before him, only then he experiences the condition of which Jesus has spoken: "Be ye perfect as your Father in Heaven is perfect".
Other Wazifa's that are pronounced in the Element Ritual:
"Jelal-Jemal", the manly and the womanly;
"Latifa", the flowing;
"Bismillah", in the name of God;
"Allah-hu-Akbar", God is great;
"Ya Shafee-Ya Kafee", the Healing Power, the All Sufficient Power;
"Ishq Allah Ma Budh Allah", God is Love, Lover and Beloved.