Sant Mat, the Way of the Saints

Sant Mat, the Way of the Saints
Sam the Writing Guy
University of Phoenix
November 15, 2009

Sant Mat, the Way of the Saints
      Throughout most of recorded history, the Indian subcontinent has been the frequent subject many invasions and conquests. The Turks, Persians, Muslims, and Mongols have all played roles in the evolution of Indian Culture. Centuries of forced diversity in the region have provided the world with a variety of religious and spiritual belief systems. Hinduism and Buddhism, in their various forms, are products of a diverse Indian culture. Another lesser-known belief system is known as Sant Mat. Sant Mat, the teaching of the Saints, is based on Shabd, the Word of God manifested as the inner spirit (Singh, 1983). This paper provides an historical overview of the Sant Mat tradition, following its lineage from the Sufi Mystics through the modern day Radhasoami practices.

History of Sant Mat
The Early Saints
      The roots of Sant Mat can be traced back over 800 years to the early Muslim mystics, the Sufis, who came to the Punjab, in the northern region of pre-partition India. One of the earliest of these mystics was the Sufi Saint, Baba Farid. Farid was born in 1173, two years after the Muslim conquest of Punjab led by Muhammad Ghori (Medieval History of India, 2008). Following his early religious training, at the age of seven, Farid was sent to Multan for his higher education. During this education, Farid met Hazrat Khwaja Qutbuddin Baktiar Kaki, a Sufi mystic of the Chishtiyya Silsila order, and became one of his disciples. Following the death of Khwaja Qutbuddin Baktiar Kaki, Farid accepted the mantel of spiritual leader and settled the Chishtiyya Silsila mission in Pakpattan district of the Punjab Province (The Canadian Society of Muslims, n.d.). Farid is credited for creating the first literary compositions ever written in the Punjabi language (, n.d). His intention was to make the Sufi...