Hazrat Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan, a brilliant Indian musician, came to the West in 1910 at the behest of his Sufi teacher, Sayyed Muhammad Abu Hashim Madani, who charged him with a mission: to harmonize East and West with the music of his soul.
He had dedicated his early life to the mastery of the subtle intricacies of classical Indian music under the tutelege of his grandfather Moula Baksh, a musical giant who had integrated the Hindustani and Karnatic musical traditions of Northern and Southern India. While barely in his twenties, Inayat Khan received the highest recognition and honors for his artistic accomplishments.
He was initiated by Shaykh al-Masha’ikh Sayyid Muhammad Abu Hashim Madani in the four main Sufi lineages in India, though his primary connection was with the Chishti Order.
On September 13, 1910 he began an odyssey which would encompass three continents and transform thousands of lives. He traveled continually in Europe and the United States, first learning about Western culture and mentality, and then conveying the traditional Sufi teachings in a more and more universel form. He eventually settled in Suresnes, a suburb of Paris, where he held annual summer schools. During only sixteen years in the West, he created a school of spiritual training based upon the traditional teachings of the Chishtiyya and infused with a revolutionary vision of the unity of religious ideals and the coming awakening of the human spirit to its inherent divinity.
Scenes from the 2012 Urs celebration in Delhi, India can be found here on YouTube.
You can read more about Hazrat Inayat Khan at the Inayati Order website www.inatyatiorder.org