Representative/Guide Role & Qualifications

If you would like to be considered for training as a Representative or Guide, please speak with your Guide and ask them to submit a Nomination for Training form on your behalf. Please contact us with any questions.

The Role of an Inayati Order Representative

The primary responsibilities of the Representative is teaching classes, guiding Murids, and tasks related to the organization of a Center. Tasks in a Center can be shared with or delegated to skillful and trustworthy Murids. A new Representative may take the time they need to develop their capacity to fulfill the various responsibilities.

The Role of an Inayati Order Guide

The primary responsibility of the Guide is guiding Murids.

Representative Responsibilities

Conducting public and Murid classes that offer the teachings of the Inayati Order and instructions on its basic spiritual practices. This includes Inquirers and Message classes for the public and Study Circle or Gatha Classes for Murids. Study Circles are classes for Murids that use published material of Hazrat Inayat Khan, Pir Vilayat, and Pir Zia rather than the Esoteric Papers.

2. Offering classes for new Murids which provide basic practices, such as the prayers and purification breaths, along with information related to Murid training and the organization.

Coordinating the organizational and administrative tasks of establishing or maintaining an Inayati Order Center. Policies and procedures related to Center work are sent in the information packet for newly appointed leaders. Communication with the Inayati Order Headquarters, collecting Center dues, and building a sense of community are some of the responsibilities related to this aspect of the position.

3. Functioning as a spiritual guide within the Inayati Order. This includes giving initiations, prescribing practices, periodically interviewing the initiates whom one guides, and conveying relevant teachings to assist in the spiritual journey of each Murid.

4. Financially supporting the Inayati Order through annual donations or monthly tithes.

Guide Responsibilities

1. Functioning as a spiritual guide within the Inayati Order. This includes giving initiations, prescribing practices, periodically interviewing the initiates whom one guides, and conveying relevant teachings to assist in the spiritual journey of each Murid.

2. Financially supporting the Inayati Order through annual donations or monthly tithes.

Time Commitment

Time commitments are difficult to estimate because of the variables. For example: What is the size of the Center? How established is it? Are there people interested in initiation? Are there other leaders with whom one can share the responsibilities? Some Representatives conduct several classes a week, others once or twice a month. How many Murids can you realistically guide? Talking with experienced Representatives and Guides and reflecting upon the demands of your life will be helpful to you. The Regional Representative in your area can also assist you in finding a balance between deeply committed service and burnout.

Training Requirements

Leaders are expected to attend the annual training and retreat with Pir Zia. It is required that a leader participate in one of these programs at least every other year. If circumstances in one’s life do not permit this then the leader is asked to notify the Inayati Order Headquarters. In order to distribute the travel costs associated with attendance, programs of this nature are held in various locations. Scholarships are available.


A sabbatical is possible for leaders who need to withdraw from activity temporarily. Please contact the Inayati Order Headquarters to arrange a sabbatical.


A Representative or Guide who wishes to retire from the role of Representative or Guide should notify the Inayati Order Headquarters of their change in status and planned date of retirement as soon as they know. If also retiring from guiding Murids, the Representative or Guide is responsible for coming to closure and supporting the Murids they have been guiding through the period of finding a new Guide or Representative. If the Representative is responsible for an Inayati Order Center, before retirement they should try to find a replacement Representative for that Center. The Regional Representative and the Esoteric Secretary can help them in this process.

Planning for Life Transitions

Representatives should ensure that an up to date list of Murids that they guide, including their contact information, is in the possession of some other Representative or Guide, or the Esoteric Secretary, in the event that they need to take a medical leave, should unexpectedly die, or become incapacitated. If they are filling any administrative duties in an Inayati Order Center, they should ensure that an available backup exists of any passwords required for the functioning of the Center, and if in possession of financial, legal or other important administrative records, that those records are easily accessible and/or leave copies in the possession of other responsible persons. Provision should be made for the return of any Esoteric Papers to the Inayati Order Headquarters.


1. Dedication to the ideals of the Inayati Order and appreciation of the Message as expressed in the teachings of Hazrat Inayat Khan, Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan, and Pir Zia Inayat-Khan.

2. Willingness to maintain a close link with Pir Zia and the Inayati Order by attending national and regional training programs, webcasts, and Pir Zia’s leaders’ retreats. The connection also can be maintained through daily Inayati Order practices.

3. Willingness to commit the time and energy needed to fulfill the responsibilities of a Representative or Guide.

4. A sincere interest in serving as a Representative or Guide.


1. The appropriate attunement to serve in this role, which involves providing spiritual guidance for initiates.

2. Personal maturity, which can manifest through a person’s ability to meet the demands and responsibilities of life. Another sign of this quality is the integration of the teachings into a person’s being and life. A Representative or Guide must be able to maintain a sense of balance within this role, or it will have a negative effect upon the work, the Murids, and him/herself.

3. Respect for the sacred nature of spiritual guidance, which involves a commitment to confidentiality, and honoring the need of initiates to find their own way in accordance with their conscience.

4. Capacity to listen to others in an empathetic manner and with discernment, being present with others, rather than responding out of his/her own needs or projections. This applies to working with individual initiates as well as groups.

5. Willingness and ability to abide by the ethical guidelines established by the Inayati Order.

6. Physical appearance appropriate to the function of representing the Order.

7. Understanding the difference between the teachings and their own personal views.


1. Experience as a Murid actively involved in the esoteric training, which includes the essential relationship with a Guide and prescribed spiritual practices. A minimum of three to five years is suggested, depending upon the quality of the training received, the maturity of the Murid, and the need for his/her services as a Representative.

2. It is necessary that the prospective Representative has had training within an Inayati Order Center and has participated in various kinds of classes and retreats.

3. Significant service in the role of Coordinator. This allows for the gradual development of skills which are then integrated with experience.

4. Successful completion of the Representative Training program, which involves:

1. Practice and study of the Inayati Order teachings and practices that a Representative is expected to know in order to lead classes and guide Murids.

2. A 10-day personal retreat.

3. Successful completion of several Inayati Order Leadership Training Modules

4. Experience leading classes (see Skills below).

5. Experience using intuition (see Skills below).

6. Additional training and study deemed appropriate by the Representative-in-Training and their Mentor.


1. Good one-to-one and group communication skills are essential, including the ability to be empathetic rather than judgmental of others.

2. For Representatives, organizational and administrative skills required for facilitating and overseeing the activities of a Center. This relates to tasks such as class scheduling and presentation, finances, publicity, conducting Center meetings, and the appropriate delegation of responsibilities.

3. Ability to teach meditation, which means being an experienced meditator who can help facilitate this process for others. It is suggested that a Representative or Guide complete several personal retreats before being appointed; a 10-day personal retreat is required for appointment.

4. Capacity for turning within and discerning the Spirit of Guidance. This is at the heart of the role of a Guide or Representative, for it is the source from which spiritual guidance and practices may be shared with an initiate.

5. Willingness to work with people in an inclusive form of leadership.

6. Sufficient knowledge of psychological assessment to determine when to advise a Murid to seek professional help.

Level of Initiation

A Representative or Guide must be at the 7th level of initiation or above.

Step Two

If you would like to be considered for training, speak with your Guide and have them fill out the training nomination on your behalf.

Training Nomination