Bulleh Shah Meets His Master
Bulleh Shah, the well-known Muslim saint of northern India, was a devoted disciple of the mystic Inayat Shah, who earned his living as a gardener in Lahore in the early eighteenth century.
In the book Bulleh Shah, published by RSSB, the following story is related of how the young Bulleh first encounters his Master:
It is said that even before coming in contact with Inayat Shah, Bulleh Shah was spiritually developed, and had acquired certain miraculous powers. One day, it happened that Bulleh Shah passed close by the small field where Inayat Shah was planting out onion seedlings. Seeing the fruit-laden trees on both sides of the road it occurred to him to test Inayat Shah’s spiritual power. Invoking the name of God, Bulleh looked at the trees, and the fruit started falling on the ground. Inayat Shah looked back and saw that unripe fruit was mysteriously falling from the trees. He immediately realized that it was due to the mischief played by the young man passing by. He looked towards Bulleh Shah and said, “Well, young man, why have you brought down the unripe fruit from the trees?”
This is what Bulleh Shah wanted, to find an opportunity to talk to Inayat Shah. He went up to him and said, “Sir, I neither climbed up the trees, nor did I throw any stones at the fruit, how could I pluck it from the trees?” Inayat Shah cast a full glance at Bulleh Shah and said, “O, you are not only a thief, you are also being clever!” Inayat’s glance was so penetrating that it touched Bulleh’s heart and he instantly fell at his feet. Inayat Shah asked him his name and his purpose in coming to him. Bulleh replied, “Sir, my name is Bulleh and I wish to know how I can realize God.” Inayat Shah said, “Why do you look down?
Get up and look at me.” As soon as Bulleh raised his head and looked at Inayat Shah, the Master again cast him a full glance, laden with love, shaking him all through. He said, “O Bulleh, what problem is there in finding God? We only need to uproot from here and plant there.”
This was enough for Bulleh Shah. He got what he had wished for.
Inayat Shah had blessed him with the essence of spirituality in these few words. He conveyed to Bulleh Shah that the secret of spiritual progress lies in detaching one’s mind from the world outside and attaching it to God within.
I have now seen the fair Beloved,
Whose beauty shines through his creation…
The pirs and prophets are his slaves;
Men and angels bow before him.
They place their head on his feet.
He is the greatest of all the lords.
I have now seen the fair Beloved.
He who wants to meet the Lord,
None can do so without a guide.
Inayat Shah revealed the secret;
And the mysteries stood resolved.