I seek patterns. By the time three people told me I should read
In Search of the Miraculous (Ouspensky, P.D., 1949), I did.
It sort of blew my mind away, figuratively speaking. And later,
when I read The Sufis (Shah, Idries, 1964) and Toward
Awakening (Vaysse, Jean, 1979), I was hooked. There are these
schools, I read about, centered around the "chain of transmission"
of named teachers, fostering esoteric art and science. Well, in
its broadest sense, "esoteric" means being of use to other
people, making their lives a little easier, and aiding greater human
development. In its narrowest sense, it means being a big shot.
The most esoteric books I ever found are Special Problems in
the Study of Sufi Ideas (Shah, Idries, 1966) and Neglected
Aspects of Sufi Study (Shah, Idries, 1977), which latter states,
"People become fascinated by the ESP characteristics sometimes
observed in sufis. But the first requirement in a sufi student is
that he conceal this development from outside inquisitiveness."
pp. 56-57. Such hints are also alluded to in the Mathnawi
of Jalaluddin Rumi (1926).