Members of Sufism Reoriented identify divinity as love and consider Meher Baba an embodiment of the perfection of love. They also wish to engage in a course of spiritual training with the murshida (spiritual director) of Sufism Reoriented. On a practical level, they agree to adhere to four prerequisites of membership:
- A commitment to try to be 100 percent honest in all things — with kindness
- Abstinence from use of illicit and hallucinatory drugs
- Abstinence from sex outside of marriage
- Active and productive participation in the world, including being financially responsible and having a surplus of time and energy for service.
In setting these prerequisites, Meher Baba emphasized the importance of members of Sufism Reoriented being fully engaged in work in the world and contributing to the life of their broader communities as well as to the life of their spiritual community.
Spiritual orders of the past often maintained patterns of life that were isolated from the world, designed to protect their students from all that might distract them from one-pointed focus on God. Meher Baba's principles begin with the knowledge that all aspects of life are divine. God is to be found everywhere and within everything.
Therefore, Meher Baba encouraged the members of Sufism Reoriented to lead active lives in the world, to pursue careers and to raise families. He valued the ability to deal skillfully and responsibly with one's duties and obligations in daily life, and he encouraged members to strive to meet socially acknowledged standards of education, professional training, and productive work.
Accordingly, members of Sufism Reoriented are involved in the broader community fully and practically. They include doctors, nurses, lawyers, college professors, school teachers, financial managers, bankers, business managers, and more. In all these roles, they aspire to join those with whom they meet and work in daily life in the spirit of harmony and love.
Members are encouraged to offer voluntary service to the community on an individual basis and support a wide variety of organizations and projects. For example, members of Sufism Reoriented in the San Francisco area were founders of the Hospice of the East Bay, the Concord Rape Crisis Hotline, which grew into the Contra Costa County Rape Crisis Center, the School of Holistic Studies at John F. Kennedy University, the Neighbors Helping Neighbors program in Walnut Creek, and more.
Sufism Reoriented also sponsors innovative volunteer programs to meet the special needs of our underserved neighbors. In the Bay Area, the White Pony Express and Francis in the Schools programs, created by Murshida Conner, have been developed, funded, staffed, and actively supported by our members.
Members gather together weekly for spiritual lessons and worship services from late October through May.