“The souls of all are from one and the same source but a soul which is unveiled shines out. Love and light come continually from such souls. We need no proof of it for it is living.“
~ Hazrat Inayat Khan
"There is a time in life when a a passion is awakened in the soul which gives the soul a longing for the unattainable, and if the soul does not take that direction, then it certainly misses something in life for which is its innate longing and in which lies its ultimate satisfaction."
Hazrat Inayat Khan
In later life, Inayat went through a three stage set of realizations which had such a profound effect on him as to make him "almost unrecognizable" to those who knew him. Inayat claimed that while his consciousness was far removed from the body, he was obliged to pass through the different states of awareness that all human beings pass through in their development. The experience was analogous to Dante's experience of hell, purgatory, and heaven which concludes in the Beatific Vision of God.
Part of this initiation consisted of an experience of Hell. Hell is a place that the living visit in dreams, and the dead experience when their consciousness lives on to reap the results of their negative actions in life. Inayat's view was that hell in the afterlife is comparable to dreaming but much more intense.
The next vision was an experience of purgatory where souls suffer in an effort to move beyond their attachments and limitations. This act of purification requires a great effort of will.
The third vision was a stage of bliss where the human element was purified and purged to the point of illumination. Von Stalk describes Inayat as "cosmic" and as a being "now given up to service as a superb channel for the divine" following this final experience.