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The eight chapters of Sufi Mysticism consist of lectures, delivered on various occasions, in which Hazrat Inayat Khan tried to explain something of the essence of mysticism. He also tried to give a glimpse of the life and work on earth of the mystics, those beings who, through their advanced state of evolution, and through their constant contact with the unseen and the unknown, 'hold aloft the light of truth through the darkness of human ignorance,' in the words of the Sufi invocation.
Because so many people are apprehensive of the word 'initiation,' believing it to mean a kind of mysterious ordeal one has to go through, Inayat Khan repeatedly explained its real significance for example, in, The Way of Illumination. When asked what initiation involved, he often replied that it was 'a blessing and a welcome.' The Path of Initiation and Discipleship is a collection of lectures and papers in which the different stages and aspects of initiation and discipleship are set forth in a comprehensive form. It may serve as a guide to those who wish to learn more about the esoteric activity of the Sufi movement.