Pir Vilayat made it clear to Zia at an early age that he wished him to continue his lineage. He prepared him by instructing him in meditation, and at times guiding him in spiritual retreat—once in his cave in the Alps of Chamonix.
When Zia was 13, Pir Vilayat sent him to Dharamsala, India, to study under the auspices of his friend His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Sufism, however, was the central theme of the training Pir Vilayat passed on to his son. Pir Vilayat urged him to study Persian and Urdu at the London School of Oriental and African Studies, which he did, earning a B.A. (Honors) in Persian Literature. He went on to pursue graduate research in Islamic Studies, eventually earning a Ph.D. in Religion from Duke University.
With his father’s blessing, Zia undertook a period of seclusion at the Chishti Khanqah in Ahmedabad, India, and received spiritual transmission from Pir Rashid-ul-Hasan Jili Kalimi in Hyderabad.
In 2000 Pir Vilayat held a turban-tying (dastar-bandi) ceremony in Delhi, initiating Zia to the rank of Pir and confirming him as his spiritual successor (Sajjada-nishin). Pir Vilayat passed away three years later—may God keep him.
Since 2004 Pir Zia has served as Head of the Inayati Order, guiding Sufi communities in the North America, South America, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and the South Pacific.
To provide opportunities for intensive Sufi study, Pir Zia founded the Suluk Academy. Based at the Abode of the Message in upstate New York, the Suluk Academy currently offers courses for Sufi initiates in New York, California, and France.
Outside the Sufi sphere, Pir Zia has taken part in numerous interreligious and interdisciplinary gatherings. To encourage such conversations and collaborations, he founded Seven Pillars House of Wisdom. Pir Zia is also a Fellow of the Lindisfarne Association, and an Advisor to the Contemplative Alliance.
He lives with his wife Pirani Sartaj and children Rasulan and Ravanbakhsh at the Abode of the Message in New Lebanon, New York, and at Fazal Manzil in Suresnes, France.
For more on Pir Zia, go to www.pirzia.org
Events with Pir Zia Inayat-Khan
September 22, 2017
The program begins with an Equinox gathering and moves into an evening dialogue about the mysticism of sound and music and the necessity of both in healing. Saturday is a day for healers of all kinds to share modalities, to offer special gifts and trainings to the group. In the evening, a public conversation and concert with Randy Weston and special guest, Pir Zia Inayat-Khan, son of Abode Founder Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan and grandson of Hazrat Inayat Khan, will interface (via teleconference), two mystics and the music of the soul. This concert has recently changed venues to the Berkshire…
September 23, 2017
UPDATE: To ensure the highest musical quality, the venue has shifted to the BERKSHIRE MUSEUM. We are grateful for their willingness to partner and accommodate this magical evening! More information can be found HERE. Music has been the language of mystics and mundanes alike because it speaks the language of the soul. Dr. Randy Weston, a master musician, has been influenced by the mystical voice of Sufi teacher, Hazrat Inayat Khan, father of the Abode’s founder. Join us for a night of conversation between Dr. Randy Weston and Pir Zia Inayat-Khan (via teleconference), grandson of Hazrat Inayat Khan, followed…