May—June , 1928 VOL. 3-4
COSMIC MOTION PICTURE
—By Swami Yogananda
In this hall of life, we are all moving picture actors as well as movie fans. We entertain, inspire, and instruct others with the show of our experiences, and we ourselves watch the ever-changing interesting pictures of other lives.
The pictures of various events are filmed in the east, west, north and south. The various nations with their strange and colorful actings of diverse customs, traditions and occupations amid varying scenic and climatic environments, offer infinitely rich and inexhaustible material for producing life-films of ever-new interest.
Educational, sensational, comical, saddening and inspiring pictures are taken by the mind-camera of the average man, every day, anytime, anywhere. There are many comic films in life. Inspiring scenes help us when we behold the unrolled film of lives of great men and great adventurers like Lincoln, Gandhi, Lindbergh, Byrd, Emerson and thousands of other unique personalities, as well as the heroic figures of the religious teachers of the world, like Jesus, Buddha, Zoroaster, Confucius, Mohammed, Krishna and others.
We watch, moved and entertained, the mental movie pictures as filmed in Shakespearean tragedies and other great dramatic writings, in the house of our imagination. The pictures of world events, daily facts, evoked by our newspapers, hold our passing interest. the pictures of others’ sufferings bring a tear, a determination to help them. Thru their sorrow, we find our own joy in helping them. The gods sympathize with and entertain themselves with the joy of helping mortals. If they cried, and became identified with the tears of others, they could not render help. For sorrow increases sorrow, which can only be diminished and healed thru contact with the potent salve of unshakable happy minds. Hence in watching tragic mistakes or misfortunes of other lives or of our own, we should feel only tears of joy because of our ability and absolute power to help. There cannot be room for the dark disturbing emotion of grief in children made in the likeness of God.
Individuals who are highly nervous, or who are suffering with the malady of melancholia, or anemic pessimism, or who are stricken with spells of despair at the approach of the least difficulties of life—these do not profit by watching the pictures of tragedy in other lives. They will have fainting spells; they cannot thus learn the lesson of the result of wrong behavior and thus desist from error, nor can they render help to those who are suffering, since they themselves are not free from suffering.
Thus, one must be thoroughly prepared mentally to profitably watch the motion picture of the tragedy of trying experiences in others’ lives, in order to be able to render help in making others look upon life as only a picture for our entertainment and instruction.
The great wars of Europe and Asia, the natural cataclysms of earthquakes and floods, the famines, prosperous eras, influence of world-saints, statesmen and villains, the work of the colossal geniuses of the ages—the poets, business men, writers, courageous reformers, great lovers and heroes—these events and these natures all played their parts in the studio of the centuries.
Everything took time, everything seemed to last long to the consciousness of man. Each life seemed almost unending, each great event was all-absorbing, but when the Director of life called "Cut!" the film was over. The greatest lives, the complex knotted existences, the whole history of nations, your life and mine, past, present and future (if we could but see), which seem to drag on minutely, surely, slowly, could nevertheless be filmed and each life shown in a couple of hours. One’s life, lived thru a hundred years, seems so long-drawn-out when taken thru the slow mental camera, but with the fast camera of true retrospection, one sees the whole panorama at a glance.
Is this life a movie show? The millions of geologic years, the constellations of heaven, the floating vapors, atomic combinations, earth materials, oceans, continents, nations and their histories, millions of births and the almost complete change by death every hundred years of all the earth’s inhabitants, the various great intellectual, spiritual and material civilizations, their rise and fall—with this background, we can see all life as a vast ever-changing, ever-new, ever-entertaining mighty film in the hall of introspection. This life is a Paramount picture, shown in serials and by installments, infinitely interesting, ever-fresh, ever-stirring, ever-complex. The master minds and world-changing men like Jesus, Buddha, Socrates, Asoka, Mohammed, Caesar, William the conqueror, Darwin, Copernicus, Galileo, Newton and many other outstanding pioneers and leaders, are the great stars of the motion picture productions, who command universal attention from their audiences.
The picture of life must be always different to be interesting. One does not want to see the same comedies of lives or the same Pathe news of prosaic facts or the same tragedies of harrowing or gruesome experiences, all the time. One wants variety and can hardly bear to see the same picture twice. That is why the Great Director of the motion picture of life keeps everything changing. You cannot drink twice from the same running water, you cannot watch the same event twice. The water passes by; the events change; you are not now the same man as you were a second ago—your thoughts have changed, your sum total is in a different proportion.
Why not then take life simply as a motion picture show? To do that, you must steel your mind against sorrow. You must be prepared for variety. You must be a motion picture player, an entertainer, as well as one of the audience, in watching your own and others’ pictures. While playing the part of combating disease, or fighting failures, or undergoing accidents, or enduring the trials of life, you must know you are just playing a part.
Just as an actor in the moving pictures is untouched by the sorrow he has to depict in his characters, so must you remain untouched by the changing pictures of inevitable misfortune, sickness, sudden failure and unforeseen obstacles in life. Sickness, failure and grief are so simply by the relative standards of human consciousness. A disciplined consciousness, united to cosmic consciousness, never inwardly experiences sickness or suffering or failure. As God’s children, we are always perfect and we must recover that consciousness by wisdom and true understanding of the meaning of life and its problems.
Care not if you are not the principal player in the movies of life. No movie picture is made up of only one player or one event. Your part in playing, if short or obscure, is yet very important, for without you the picture of life is incomplete. In the Universal Director’s eyes, he who plays his life’s part well, whatever that may be, is made a star to shine in His immortal galaxy.
Our troubles mostly spring from not knowing what our parts are. This results from not developing our innate intuitive soul-faculties. Rouse the all-feeling, all-seeing Wisdom by regular meditation, and find your part. Then you must play or watch your own playing or the playing of others, be it the Pathe news of plain facts or a comedy of errors, or the tragedy of trying experiences, with an inwardly entertained mind. This is no room for pain, grievance or boredom in watching the movie of our own life. The retrospective consciousness of man can play all the noble parts of life joyously, untouched by suffering. These cosmic movies are all for our entertainment.
The great Director of the Motion Picture Company of life is made of Joy. We, as His children, are made in His image of joy. From joy we came, in joy we live, in joy we melt. He brought out this cosmic motion picture to keep Himself entertained. We, having come out of His being, are endowed with the same quality of superconsciousness by which we can watch the pictures of life, of birth, death and world events with the same divinely enjoying spirit. You watch a tragedy in a motion picture house, and when it is over, you say, "O, it was a fine picture!" So must you be able to look upon the pictures of trials of your own life and say, "O, my life is interesting with troubles and difficulties to be overcome. These are all my stimulants to show me my errors and help me to assume the right mental attitude by which I can watch with joy the fascinating spectacle of life."
The consciousness of man is made of God and is pain-proof. All physical and mental sufferings come by identification, imagination, and wrong human habits of thinking. We have to travel along the labyrinthine path of life, visiting many motion picture houses of varied experience, entering them with the consciousness of being entertained and instructed. Then life and death will be watched with an unchangeable, joyous consciousness. Our consciousness we will find to be one with cosmic consciousness. And with our cosmic consciousness, unchanged by the human waking of birth or the sleep of death, we will watch the Cosmic Motion Picture with perennial, ever-new Joy.
THE BIBLE AND THE BHAGAVAD GITA—By Nicolai Husted
We shall here consider two different symbolical teachings regarding man’s spiritual nature and the different forces of his being, presented alike in Bhagavad Gita and the Bible. In the one as well as in the other of these teachings, the inherent powers in man are represented by allegoric characters, and we find that an undercurrent of identically the same conception as to the dual nature of man and the requirements for his spiritual development, prevails through both. This is probably the most remarkable feature of these two different schools of spiritual and religious thoughts handed down to us from the remote past.
The Bhagavad Gita occurs as an episode in the great Hindu epic, the Mahabharata, in which we learn that an old branch of the Aryan Race, in northern India, known a the Kurus or Kuruvas, and a younger tribe branched off from the older and known as the Pandu, or Panduvas, were at war. The younger tribe was overpowered by the Kuruvas and driven out of the country. The Panduvas return, after a period of misrule by the Kuruvas, and the prolonged warfare between the two tribes is made the theme of the Bhagavad Gita, serving as symbolic material for its teaching.
We learn that there were two powerful brothers who caused the separation of the old and the new tribe. They were named Dhritarastra and Pandu, respectively. The former was blind, but nevertheless the king of his people, which were spoken of as the children of Dhritarastra. His brother Pandu had five sons, of whom Arjuna was the foremost.
Bhagavad Gita begins its story by describing the Kuruvas and the Panduvas drawn up in battle formation on the sacred field of Kurushestra. Krishna has come to the assistance of Arjuna and pleads with him to fight and slay his enemies that he may regain his kingdom.
The armies of the Kuruvas and the Panduvas are thus regarded as the children and families of two brothers, struggling for supremacy. But Arjuna’s heart fails him. He argues with Krishna that the Kuruvas are people of his own blood, relatives and friends. He says:
"What victory can bring delight;
What rich spoils could profit;
What rule of recompense;
What span of life itself seem sweet,
Bought with such blood? Seeing these
Stand here ready to die,
For whose sake life was fair;
Fathers and grandfathers,
Brothers and brothers-in-law, and sons-in-law,
Elders and friends,
Shall I deal death on these
Even though they seek to slay us?
Not one blow will I strike."
So speaking in face of those two hosts,
Arjuna sank upon his chariot seat
And let fall bow and arrows, sick at heart.
Man’s Inner Struggle
It is man’s inner being which here is pictured. The old Kuruvas signify the primitive aspects of man, his egotistic desires and propensities. As such they are the children of this blind king, Dhritarastra, the lower nature.
The Panduvas, on the other hand, who were a younger (i.e., later born) branch of the former, and were driven out by them, signify the soul faculties in man, in a state of manifestation. Arjuna himself, the head of this army, stands for the soul. He rides with Krishna in his war chariot, drawn by five horses, between the armies. Krishna stands for the divine wisdom of the soul.
The war-chariot is here signifying the life-energy, and the five horses naturally symbolize the five human senses. It is in this war-chariot, drawn by these horses, that Arjuna and Krishna, God and man, ride through the world.
But why is Arjuna weak at the outset of his career? Why does his heart fail him in the crucial test? Let us try to learn the real secret of the Kuruvas and we shall better understand Arjuna.
The Army of Dhritarastra
Following are a few characteristics of man’s lower nature, symbolized by the Kuruvas, whom Arjuna would have to fight and subdue in order to gain his kingdom: Anger, Intolerance, Malicious criticism, Self-justification for being unjust, Revengefulness, Greed, Avarice, Arrogance, Falsehood, Despair, Self-love, Delusion, Pretense, Doubt, Limited human love, Dominating desires, Immorality, Envy, Vanity, et cetera.
These are some of the Kuruvas. Many of them were recognized by Arjuna as being his friends and relatives, for whom he had the affection born of long association. Krishna maintained that he would have to slay them all.
The question of Arjuna as to how his life could seem sweet if all his relatives were banished from it, symbolizes the fear that man first feels for the impersonal joys of the spirit, which come only after all ideas of possession, pleasure and self-love have been uprooted. These "relatives", i.e., parts of our own lower nature, must be slain ere self-victory is won.
The holy battlefield of Kurukshestra is thus located within every one of us. It is, therefore, not the symbolical Arjuna who is told to fight and slay his enemies in order to regain his kingdom, but every man is meant.
Esau and Jacob
Turning to the Bible, we find that Esau and Jacob are invested with the same symbolic significance as Dhritarastra and Arjuna. By passing victoriously a trial of initiation, pictured as a wrestling with God in the darkness of night, Jacob ascends to a higher order of being and is called Israel. Through this victory Jacob assumes the same allegorical importance as Arjuna, a man who is joined with God and speaks with God.
In going back to the birth of these brothers, we gain the key to the allegorical secret of the children of Israel and their enemies. We read in the 25th Chapter of Genesis about the strange experience of Rebekah, that the children struggled within her, and that she went and inquired of the Lord.
"And the Lord said unto her, two nations
Are in thee, and two manners of people
Shall be separated from thee, and the one people
Shall be stronger than the other people,
And the elder shall serve the younger.
"And when her days to be delivered
Were fulfilled, behold,
There were twins in her womb.
"And the first born was red like a hairy garment,
And they called his name Esau.
"After that came his brother,
And they called his name Jacob."
The Old Testament books proceed to show that out of Esau came all the tribes of evil known in the scriptures, while out of Jacob came the twelve tribes of Israel, a nation of priests and scribes and prophets, a nation spoken of as "The chosen people of the Lord".
These two different manner of people, the nations of Esau and Jacob, were always in conflict, as were the Kuruvas and the Panduvas of India, and as the latter so were the former—the children of two brothers, signifying the lower and higher natures within man. This shows that the Mosaic scribes pictured the same thoughts and spiritual truths in the Bible as the Hindu scribes introduced and symbolized in the Bhagavad Gita.
The allegory of Rebekah and the birth of Esau and Jacob takes us back to that state and condition of primitive man where the spiritual nature began to stir and make itself known. There was a spiritual awakening taking place; a dim realization of right and wrong was in evidence. At that stage, Esau and Jacob came into existence; that is, an organization and development of two separate and antipodal principles in man were taking place, the awareness and realization of spiritual life were already manifest, and the struggle and opposite tendencies of the older and the younger forces in human nature were in progress before the separation finally took place. These were the children struggling in the womb of Rebekah.
During all the different periods of struggle between the children of Israel and their enemies, we find the God Jehovah, like Krishna, urging his people to fight and to destroy their enemies.
By misunderstanding this symbology, people have criticized the Jews and their scriptures because of their war-God. Yet the prophets of Israel had no more thought of a war-God in an external sense than had the scribes of Bhagavad Gita. It is, in both cases, the God within man who is at war with the invisible enemies of the lower nature.
The Captivity of the Children of Israel in Egypt
As the people of Arjuna in India were exiled form their own country, so the children of Israel became strangers in a foreign land where they were kept as slaves. This is a symbolism, picturing another phase of man’s spiritual development in one of the early cycles of his earthly career. Here the land of Egypt stands for human nature, whose primitive mind is represented by Pharaoh, who is identical with the blind king, Dhritarashtra. This allegory must be understood as a condition on which one may be able to understand the prophetical writings with regard to Egypt, in connection with the children of Israel. Thus the prophet Isaiah writes:
"I gave Egypt in ransom for thee."
That is to say, that the Higher self or Over-soul of man sacrifices the lower nature in order to save the soul from captivity by the lower senses.
Referring to the Christ-birth within man, Isaiah writes in another place that at that time five cities in the land of Egypt shall speak the language of Canaan, and that there shall be an altar unto the Lord in the midst of the land of Egypt in that day.
The five cities in the land of Egypt are here identical with the five horses before the war-chariot of Arjuna and Krishna, and we identify them with the five physical senses, which, when the Christ comes, will serve as agencies of divine manifestations. The altar to the Lord in the midst of the land of Egypt in that day signifies spiritualization of the life-energy and the attainment of divine consciousness in man. In fact, this spiritualization or ripening of the life-energy in human nature is itself the Christ, the divine quality of the soul, attained as the fruition of a holy life.
We now understand, then, that the plagues of Egypt which contributed to the release of Israel, took place within man himself by the forces of the soul and the super-spiritual self, which defeated and sacrificed the lower nature in order to proceed on the way to spiritual freedom and perfection.
Moses and Jehovah are here the same symbolic characters as Arjuna and Krishna, exerting their energies against the lower nature of their physical being. Thus, all the firstborn that died in Egypt in one night, were the firstborn (i.e., older) life-expressions of the animal man, desires and propensities which were brought up from sub-human kingdoms. All these perished during a period of battle and struggle with the revolting higher powers in their own kingdom.
The captivity of the children of Israel is, then, the enslavement of man’s spiritual faculties in the service of the material mind.
This being the case, everyone will know where he stands in this respect, whether he is still a slave in Egypt who is being forced to serve his lower instincts against his better self, or whether he is a freeman.
A "new saying" of Christ, discovered only recently at Oxyrhynchus, runs:
"The kingdom of heaven is within you;
And whosoever shall know himself shall find it.
Strive therefore to know yourselves
And ye shall be aware
That ye are the sons of the Almighty Father."
THE WEDDING OF THE ROSE AND THE LOTUS—By Vachel Lindsay
The wide Pacific waters
And the Atlantic meet
With cries of joy they mingle,
In tides of love they greet.
Above the drowned ages
A wind of wooing blows;
The red rose woos the lotus,
The lotus woos the rose . . .
The lotus conquered Egypt.
The rose was loved in Rome.
Great India crowned the lotus;
(Britain the rose’s home).
Old china crowned the lotus,
They crowned it in Japan.
But Christendom adored the rose
Ere Christendom began . . .
The lotus speaks of slumber;
The rose is as a dart,
The lotus is Nirvana;
The rose is Mary’s heart.
The rose is deathless, restless,
The splendor of our pain;
The flush and fire of labor
That builds, not all in vain . . .
The genius of the lotus
Shall heal Earth’s too much fret.
The rose in blinding glory,
Shall waken Asia yet.
Hail to their loves, ye peoples!
Behold, a world wind blows,
That aids the ivory lotus
To wed the red, red rose.
(From "Collected Poems" of
Vachel Lindsey, Macmillan Co.)
The Great Light—St. Augustine’s "Confessions"
"I entered and beheld with the eye of my soul,
Above the same eye of my soul
And above my mind,
The Light Unchangeable—not this common light,
Which shines for all flesh;
Nor as it were a greater of the same kind,
As though the brightness of this
Should shine out more and more brightly
And with its greatness take up all space.
Not such was this light,
But different, yea far different from all these.
Nor was it above my soul as oil is above water,
Nor yet as the sky is above the earth;
But it was above me
Because it made me, and I was below it
Because I was made by it.
He that knoweth the Truth, knoweth that Light;
And he that knoweth it, knoweth Eternity."
THE FAMOUS FAKIR OF LAHORE
In any comprehensive history of India for the nineteenth century, an account will be found of the feat of Sadhu Haridas, who permitted himself to be buried underground for forty days, in 1837, in order to demonstrate his powers over the life forces of the body. This feat took place at the court of the Maharaja of the Punjab, Ranjeet Singh, at Lahore, India. Haridas allowed himself to be interred in the presence of the Maharaja, his whole court, and a number of French and English doctors who were present for the occasion. The Sadhu placed himself in a sitting posture, and was then covered over and sewn up in cere-cloth, somewhat after the manner of an Egyptian mummy. He was then placed inside a large wooden case, which was strongly riveted down, and the Maharaja’s own seal was put upon several parts. The case was then lowered down into a brick vault, previously made for the purpose. Earth was then piled upon the case, after the manner of an ordinary grave. Corn was then sown in the earth, which sprang up during the period of Sadhu’s interment. An entire battalion was placed in charge, four sentries mounting guard over it by day, and eight by night.. At the expiration of forty days, the Sadhu was disinterred in the presence of the Maharaja, his court, and the French and English doctors who had been previously present at his interment. The following account, which appeared in "The Word" for May, 1911, is given by an English eye-witness from his own experience and observation at the time of the disinterment.
"On the approach of the appointed time, and according to invitation, I accompanied Runjeet Singh to the spot where the Fakir had been buried. It was in a square building called a barra-durra in the middle of one of the gardens adjoining the palace at Lahore, with an open veranda all around, having an enclosed room in the center. On arriving there, Runjeet Singh, who was attended by the whole of his court, dismounting from his elephant, asked me to join him in examining the building to satisfy himself that it was closed as he had left it. We did so; there had been a door on each of the four sides of the room, three of which were perfectly closed with brick and mortar, the fourth had a strong door, which was also closed up with mud up to the padlock, which was sealed with the private seal of Runjeet Singh in his own presence when the Fakir was interred. Indeed, the exterior of the building presented no aperture by which air could be admitted, nor any communication held, by which food could be conveyed to the Fakir. The walls also closing the doorway bore no mark whatever of having been recently disturbed or removed.
"Runjeet Singh recognized the seal as the one which he had affixed, and as he was as skeptical as any European could be of the success of such an enterprise, to guard as far as possible against any collusion, he had placed two companies from his own personal escort near the building, from which four sentries were furnished and relieved every two hours, night and day, to guard the building from intrusion. At the same time, he ordered one of the principal officers of his court to visit the place occasionally and to report the result of his inspection to him, while he himself or his minister kept the seal which closed the hole of the padlock and the latter received the report, morning and evening, from the officer on guard.
"After our examination we seated ourselves in the veranda opposite the door, while some of Runjeet Singh’s people dug away the mud wall, and one of his officers broke the seal and opened the padlock. When the door was thrown open, nothing but a dark room was to be seen. Runjeet Singh and myself then entered it, in company with the servant of the Fakir; and, a light being brought, we descended about three feet below the floor of the room into a sort of cell, where a wooden box, about four feel long by three feet broad, with a sloping roof, containing the Fakir, was placed upright, the door of which has also a padlock and seal similar to that on the outside. On opening it, we saw a figure enclosed in a bag of white linen, fastened by a string over the head—on the exposure of which a grand salute was fired and the surrounding multitude came crowding to the door to see the spectacle. After they had gratified their curiosity, the Fakir’s servant, putting his arms into the box, took the figure out, and closing the door, placed it with its back against it, exactly as the Fakir had been squatted (like a Hindoo idol) in the box itself.
"Runjeet Singh and myself then descended into the cell, which was so small that we were only able to sit on the ground in front of the body, and so close to it as to touch it with our hands and knees.
"The servant then began pouring warm water over the figure; but as my object was to see if any fraudulent practices could be detected, I proposed to Runjeet Singh to tear open the bag and have a perfect view of the body before any means of resuscitation were employed. I accordingly did so, and may here remark that the bag when first seen by us looked mildewed, as if it had been buried some time. The legs and arms of the body were shriveled and stiff, the face full, the head reclining on the shoulder like that of a corpse. I then called to the medical gentleman who was attending me to come down and inspect the body, which he did, but could discover no pulsation of the heart, the temples or the arm. There was, however, a heat about the region of the brain, which no other part of the body exhibited.
"The servant then recommended bathing him in hot water, and gradually relaxing his arms and legs from the rigid state in which they were contracted. Runjeet Singh taking his right and I his left leg, to aid by friction in restoring them to proper action; during which time the servant placed a hot wheaten cake, about an inch thick on the top of the head,—a process which he twice or thrice renewed. He then pulled out of his nostrils and ears the wax and cotton with which they were stopped; and after great exertion opened his mouth by inserting the point of a knife between his teeth, and while holding the jaws open with his left hand, drew the tongue forward with his right,—in the course of which the tongue flew back several times to its curved position upward, in which it had originally been, so as to close the gullet.
"He then rubbed his eyelids with ghee (or clarified butter) for some seconds, until he succeeded in opening them, when the eyes appeared quite motionless and glazed. After the hot cakes had been applied for the third time to the top of his head, the body was violently convulsed, the nostrils became inflated, respiration ensued and the limbs began to assume a natural fullness; but the pulsation was still faintly perceptible. The servant then put some of the ghee on his tongue, and made him swallow it. A few minutes afterwards the eyeballs became dilated, and recovering their natural color, when the Fakir, recognizing Runjeet Singh sitting close to him, articulated, in a low sepulchral tone, scarcely audible, ‘Do you believe me now?’ Runjeet Singh replied in the affirmative, and invested the Fakir with a pearl necklace and superb pair of gold bracelets, and pieces of silk and muslin and forming what is termed a Khelat, such as is usually conferred by the Princes of India on persons of distinction.
"From the time of the box being opened to the recovery of the voice, not more than half an hour could have elapsed; and in another half hour, the Fakir talked with myself and those about him freely, though feebly, like a sick person. Then we left him, convinced that there had been no fraud or collusion in the exhibition we had witnessed.
"I share entirely in the apparent incredulity of the fact of a man’s being buried alive and surviving the trial for various periods of duration; but, however incompatible without knowledge of physiology, in the absence of any visible proof to the contrary, I was bound to declare my belief in the facts which I have represented, however impossible their existence may appear to others."
THE HIDDEN—By Frances Wierman
Beyond all my senses bring to me
There dwells a mystery;
Its form and countenance I have not seen
And yet I know it bears a noble mien;
With purple shadows shielding brooding eyes
Wherein a secret knowledge lies;
It knows the answers I have sought
To meaning of Myself, the good and ill
It knows the why and whither of that spark
Dim but eternal, gleaming in the dark,
Sometimes the mystery seems not a thing apart
But close as God, heart of my heart,
I am entranced by fragrance of it,
Warmed by its breath.
Is that Unseen, majestic, my own death?
AS EVER—Kwei Chen
Thieves and Christ are crucified together as ever;
The same Romans who hailed Brutus
Sage, fool, good, wicked—
Alike they live and die,
And they are praised and condemned
Promiscuously . . .
REVIEWS OF INSPIRING BOOKS
THE INSIDE OF BUNYAN’S DREAM
The Pilgrim’s Progress for the Man of Today
By Arthur Porter, D.D.
With an Introduction by S. Parkes Cadman, D.D., President, Federal Council of the Churches of Christ in America. (Fleming H. Revell Company, N. Y.)
Reviewed by I. Mansfield Spasoff
The value of the parabolic style in the presentation of ideas which may be subject to various modes of interpretation has long been recognized. Its effective use by Jesus the Christ for illustrating high spiritual truths so as to bring them within the understanding of every hearer, whether of learned or simple mind, has made this device seem particularly the property of Christian peoples. Thus, the allegorical form of "The Pilgrim’s Progress", which was written by John Bunyan while in prison for being a non-conformist during those troubled religious times less than three hundred years ago, may account for its having survived to the present day, with a record for translation into foreign tongues and number of copies issued which has been surpassed by few books besides the bible. The general outline of this allegory is almost universally applicable to individual experience. Each of us can find himself and the difficulties of his inner struggle set forth therein, for all the qualities typified by the characters in "The Pilgrim’s Progress" are in every one of us in greater or less degree.
In his introduction to Dr. Porter’s "The Inside of Bunyan’s Dream", Dr. Cadman says, "Boys read ‘The Progress’ for its stirring adventures, and girls for its charming portraiture of the maidens who succored the Pilgrim. Strong men are enthralled by its account of Pilgrim’s fight with Apollon, and true women accompany the Pilgrim’s family for the sake of Great-heart. Statesmen, orators, poets, journalists, publicists, as well as teachers and preachers, find in the volume a rich and exhaustless treasury of wisdom, pathos, tenderness, courage, fidelity and their opposing vices alike enshrined in a style of amber."
Since the advent of Freud and psychoanalysis we have begun to probe more deeply into the inner side of experience. We are finding in ourselves repressions and complexes of which the student scarcely dreamed two decades ago. Furthermore, and of much greater importance to many of us, our spiritual lives have assumed more tangible reality through the illumination of teachings which we have received. It is possible, therefore, to more fully appreciate the able manner in which Dr. Porter has projected himself into the outward form of Bunyan’s dream and reanimated it so completely that it stands before us in the lineaments of perpetual youth. The reader is early impressed with the universality of the activating spirit beneath this rejuvenated exterior, only a little later to be filled with wonder at the ability of the author in his amplification, in respect of our modern life, of the broad outlines set down by Bunyan’s hand.
In the "Inside of Bunyan’s Dream", Dr. Porter has used "The Pilgrim’s Progress" as a glass through which to focus the light of Truth upon the immediate problems of our daily life. He has given us such an interpretation as could have been possible only in the year 1927, and in the light of all the progress which has been made in religious thought, philosophy, science and psychology during recent years. As Bunyan put the flower of his religious thinking into "The Pilgrim’s Progress", so has Dr. Porter brought forth from the depths of his own meditation a profound realization of the universality of Truth. "The Pilgrim’s Progress" has provided the initial impulse, the seed-thought, from which Dr. Porter’s careful cultivation has produced a perfect flower. He has given us in this book a broader and more inspiring analysis of the spiritual conflict in the heart of man than any average person could extract from the older work, even though he should give it his deepest thought. Without preaching, without metaphysical flights which it would be impossible for many of us to follow, in the direct language of trained introspective meditation, he allows his readers to participate in the wealth of experience, knowledge and sympathetic understanding which lie in the depths of his soul. Stimulated by this vision, when we turn to look more deeply within ourselves, we shall find our own interpretation of life’s worth enhanced and beautified. The following quotation may serve to show the easy and never tiring directness of the style, as well as the interesting content, which make "The Inside of Bunyan’s dream" so very much worth while.
"The Christian way is the way of life eternal. In a path which trails into eternity we must find our joy in the going rather than in the goal. Eternal life is eternal achievement. To gain eternal life is to reach that state where the principle of life is never inactive; where each achievement gives added zest and joy for life more and more abundant. Life itself, the process of continuous growth, becomes the end for which we must strive if difficulties are to furnish their rewards. ‘The mark of our high calling’ is an ideal which is forever just beyond the horizon. Those who are over-anxious about the top of ‘Hill Difficulty" make climbing a monotonous experience from which they would fain turn aside."
"Christian lost his scroll whilst he slept. This is Bunyan's cryptic way of explaining the nature of Christian’s sleep. Christian is now under the strain of journeying back again to the place where he lost his guide. He must needs go back to the place where he had fallen into error. The scroll of life can only be found where it was lost. Where did we experience monotony on the journey? That is the place to which we must return, and there we must make our conquest. Most piano pupils fail to become musicians because they sleep over the five-finger exercises. When scales and arpeggios become monotonous, skill is never acquired in musical interpretation. We cannot play allegro movements before we have mastered legato movements. We must not only master the technicalities of any new venture, we must enjoy them if we aspire to skill. Skill is only another name for the pleasure of sustained effort. We must double our efforts at the place where we are tempted to sleep. If the task demands an hour we must give it two. ‘If any man compel thee to go one mile, go with him twain.’ The irksomeness of the first mile is made easy by the willingness to journey two. It is in the struggle of life that springs and arbours open undreamt of by the laggard. Genuine refreshment is never for those who are always drinking at the font of leisure, but for those who risk the thirsty desert march. ‘Hill Difficulty’ is every man’s opportunity to step higher into the life of conquest. The hill exists for man. Its intrinsic worth consists in the reaction it stimulates in man."
"Winds blow and waters roll
Strength to the brave and power and deity,
Yet in themselves are nothing."
GAYNECK—By Dhan Gopal Mukerji
(E. P. Dutton & Co., N.Y.) $2.00.
Reviewed by Dale Stuart
Gayneck is the story of a pigeon. This beautiful tale, illustrated by Boris Artzybasheff, has just won the John Newbury Medal from the American Library Association as the best child’s book for 1927. But though children will adore Gayneck, adults too will not put the book down until the last page is reached.
The art of domesticating pigeons is very widely practiced in India, and we daresay it will become far more common in America after this book has been in circulation for some time. Who, after reading Gayneck, can ever look casually again upon a flock of flying fantails?—who see a hawk without a shudder of apprehension? Not this reviewer, at any rate.
We first hear about Gayneck inside of his egg. When his mother, with miraculous intuition, cracks the egg open with her beak at the precise moment that Gayneck decided that his quarters are getting a little too cramped, we see him, small and shivering. Later we watch him grow his glorious iridescent neck-feathers, and take his first timid flight with his father and mother. That was a great day!
Then Gayneck goes to the Himalayas mountains, where his Odyssey begins. A cruel hawk robs him of his mother, and he flies wildly in grief. His master, a Calcutta boy, follows him, spending days and nights in the jungle, sleeping in trees to escape the tigers, snakes and wild elephants, admiring the sublime views of Mount Everest and the jungle flowers, and visiting the Buddhist monastery near Darjeeling where the saintly monk tells him his Gayneck has come and been comforted before flying further.
Gayneck, in his own words, tells us of his wanderings, his hair or rather feather-raising experiences with hungry hawks, eagles and owls, his travels with wild geese and swifts, and his return to his anxious master.
Then followed Gayneck’s leadership among the pigeons in Calcutta and his masterly directing of maneuvers. How proud we are of Gayneck! But a terrible buzzard does not share our admiration. If it were not for the courage and self-sacrifice of Jahore, the black diamond pigeon, Gayneck would surely have been killed. Even at that, he was grievously torn and wounded.
Trembling and fear-stricken, Gayneck refuses to fly again, preferring to hop about and eat his millet seeds on his master’s roof. But after his mating with the widow, Mrs. Jahore, his courage returns. Then he is chosen to serve in the war as a carrier. We follow breathlessly his experiences in No Man’s Land. He is entrusted with very important messages, which he delivers safely amid shot and shell. Without a doubt, our Gayneck it was that won the war.
But Gayneck’s soul is weary with war-memories. He will not fly. Only when he is taken to the monastery and breathes again the pure air of the high Himalayas do his wings again soar into the blue. We say with his master, "Oh thou soul of flight, thou pearl amongst pigeons!"
THE RING OF RETURN—Compiled by Eva Martin
(Philip Allan & Co., London.)
This book is an anthology of references to Reincarnation and spiritual evolution, from prose and poetry of all ages. It takes its name from Neitzsche’s "O, how could I not be ardent for eternity, and for the marriage-ring of rings, the ring of return?"
The book is divided into several parts, each containing the contributions of a special period—the pre-Christian era of ancient Egypt, India and Greece—the early Christian era, with quotations form the Bible and early Christian fathers—the 20th century era, and quotations from miscellaneous sources.
The book is indeed a scholarly and fascinating compilation, filled with the sublime and inspiring thoughts of great poets and thinkers on pre-existence and eternal life. It is an ideal gift book.
A selection from W. L. Wilmshurst’s Nox Nivosa is given:
"Snowflakes of pureness unalloyed,
That in dark space
Are built, and split from out the teeming void
With prodigal grace,
Air-quarried temples, though you fall scarce felt
And all your delicate architecture melt
To tears upon my face,—
I too am such encrystalled breath
In the void planned
And bodied forth to surge of life and death;
And as I stand
Beneath this sacramental spilth of snow,
Crumbling, you whisper: ‘Fear thou not to go
Back to the viewless hand;
Thence to be moulded forth again
Through time and space,
Till thy imperishable self attain
Such strength and grace,
Through endless infinite refinement passed
By the eternal Alchemist, that at last
Thou see Him face to face’."
NRITANJALI—By Sri Ragini
An introduction to Hindu Dancing.
This enlightening book, illustrated by a number of characteristic Indian dance poses by the charming and accomplished authoress, outlines for Western readers the significance and ideals of Hindu dancing. The dance in India, Ragini points out, like all expressions of Hindu art, is rooted in spiritual soil. "The dance has been one of the chief forms of religious expression in India since time immemorial. The Hindu dance is conceived as an expression of spiritual energy on the earth plane through the senses and intelligence. The rhythmic, supple movement of limbs, the ripple of form, the geometric contours and bends in space are essentially related to the Universal laws of harmony and rhythm. The cyclic whirls of the dance portray the circling processes of the spheres and the union of the soul with God."
The various gods in Indian mythology are symbolized by various dances. Shiva, Lord of Creation, Laksmi, the Hindu Venus, the eight Shaktis or Energies of the protecting God Vishnu, and the Apsaras or heavenly nymphs, were all dancers and each has lent its special influence to the development of the Hindu dance. The Krishna-Radha dances of love have a deep spiritual meaning, typifying the return of the soul to the Infinite Beloved.
Hindu dancing is of two kinds—Margi, sacred to the gods, and Desi, or dancing performed for entertainment.
In an interesting chapter on "Symbolism and Gesture", Ragini writes on the elaborate art of gesture with the hands. This art, in which each movement has a distinct meaning, was developed to a greater extent in India than in any other country.
"Character means well-regulated emotion. Dancing and music in India were considered excellent regulators of the emotions. The venerable Brahmins who defined and practiced the fine arts in the past believed that ill-regulated emotion ruined life and destroyed happiness. Thus it was that the Hindu drama, which included both vocal and instrumental music and dancing, became the medium of interpretation for religion, nature, and human aspiration—a source of both joy and discipline to participants and beholders."
The emotions represented in Hindu music, gesture and dance are thirteen—valour, compassion, sex or creative emotion, wonder, laughter, fear, grotesqueness, terror, peace, devotion, friendship, parental love, and romance.
LAZARUS LAUGHED. By Eugene O’Neill.
(Boni & Liveright, N.Y.) $2.50.
In this beautiful play, which is soon to e produced in Russia at the Moscow Art Theatre, O’Neill reveals himself wholly as a mystic. One cannot think that a great saint—one who has won his way into the eternal light—would have written such a play any differently. The true artist is the true saint, since their goals—beauty and truth—are one.
The life of Lazarus after he was raised form the dead by Jesus—this is the theme that wrought O’Neill’s imagination to such a high pitch that he could produce this play, shining with pure poetic fervor, with glory and grandeur of thought that has pierced the veil of illusion, with insight into the mystery of death and the timeless, boundless joy that is the secret of all creation. "Men forget," Lazarus cries. It is only a forgetting, for behind man’s cruelty, born of his forgetting, burns an intuitive knowledge of the certainties of life, the high heritage of overwhelming glory, the peace of God, the laughter of His love. From Caesar to slave, as O’Neill shows us, all men need but to see such a man as Lazarus to recover, in some degree, their lost memory—memory, blinding with radiance—of imperishable life.
The following paragraphs give a glimpse of the high, inspiring thoughts that abound in the play:
"You forget! You forget the God in you! You wish to forget! Remembrance would imply the high duty to live as a son of God—generously!—with love!—with pride!—with laughter! This is too glorious a victory for you, too terrible a loneliness. Easier to forget, to become only a man . . ."
"Are you a speck of dust danced in the wind? Then laugh, dancing! Laugh yes to your insignificance! Thereby will be born your new greatness! As Man, Petty Tyrant of Earth, you are a bubble pricked by death into a void and a mocking silence! But as dust, you are eternal change, and everlasting growth, and a high note of laughter soaring through chaos from the deep heart of God! Be proud, O Dust! then you may love the stars as equals!"
"Age and time are but timidities of thought."
THE CREATIVE EAST—By J. W. T. Mason
Reviewed by Swami Yogananda
A close study of the three great Eastern nations—India, China and Japan—has revealed to the author of this book not only their similarities but their striking differences. In what way each of these countries is competent to instruct the West, in exchange for the fruit of knowledge from the creative genius of Western peoples, is the thoughtful and stimulating theme of this scholarly little book.
Man cannot satisfy the cravings of his many-sided nature, Mr. Mason points out, without development of three modes of expression—utilitarianism, aestheticism and spirituality. To seek one fulfillment at the expense of the other two is to court disaster and eventual stagnation. The beauty of utilitarianism, as put forward by the West, is that it "permits man to subdue matter to his will," and to "create machine power to replace the drudgery of man power." Without incorporating this knowledge and practice into their national lives, Eastern peoples, according to the true reasoning of Mr. Mason, will not realize the full achievement and purpose of life.
The West, in its turn, tiring of a too marked interest in materialism, or the objects of creation, can discipline its soul and satisfy its spiritual hunger by developing its aesthetic power and spiritual perception, its intuitive sense of oneness with its Infinite Source. In the latter domain of wisdom, India stands supreme, the teacher of the ages. China’s special genius is aestheticism, the cult of creativeness, the interest in the process of creation rather than in the created object. Her love of beauty, art, and propriety or social adjustments, is China’s distinct contribution to the true wealth of nations.
Mr. Mason, pointing out where the almost exclusive interest that India gave to mystical science, and China to aestheticism, to the detriment of utilitarian progress, constituted their weakness, as unalloyed materialism may prove the nemesis of the West, speaks of Japan as the one country in all modern history who has been able, with some degree of success, to combine the three factors of harmonious life—utilitarian, aesthetic and spiritual development. Signs are not wanting, however, that China and India are rising to new life under the spur of Western and Japanese example and high material achievement. The West, also, is coming more and more to drink from the founts of inner spiritual wisdom that have sustained India thru so many centuries.
This little book contains many striking thoughts of true value. The soul of India, China and Japan is better revealed in these few pages than in many a weighty tome.
TWO RECIPES—By Swami Yogananda
Spiritual Recipe—(Interpretation of Gita)
The following is a spiritual interpretation of Chapter 6, verse I, of the Bhagavad Gita (Song of the Spirit).
Anastritah (not desiring) karma-phalam (fruit of action) karyam-karma (dutiful actions) karoti (performs) jah (who) sa (he) sannyasee (man of renunciation) cha (as well as) yogee (one who is united to God) cha, naw (not) niragnih (he who is without fire) nachakriyah (nor he who is inactive).
Sir Edwin Arnold has translated the above in his "Song Celestial" as follows:
"Therefore, who doeth work rightful to do,
Not seeking gain from work, that man, O Prince!
Is Sanyasi and Yogi—both in one.
And he is neither who lights not the flame
Of sacrifice, nor setteth hand to task."
The above stanza outlines the middle path between the two extremes to which humanity gravitates in its march on the spiritual path. Complete renunciation of worldly activities is unpractical, for if every man forsakes the world to live in a jungle in search of God, cities would have to be built there or people would die because of lack of sanitation and proper food supplies. The schools of Christian, Hindu, and Buddhist monasticism have served certain good purposes, yet they are not ideal as they have grave weaknesses. They often foster idleness and unpracticality, and lack the trials of worldly struggle. The monasteries have to depend on the men of business for certain necessities and support, so their ideal could not be universal. Besides, outward renunciation of sense-enjoyments, without a corresponding inward renunciation, develops hypocrisy and a greater, though suppressed, attachment to material life. Outward renunciation is only helpful when the inward desire for sense-pleasures is satisfied by finding greater pleasure in God. Renunciation is not an end itself. It is not a method of self-torture. We should forsake objects of smaller consequence when they stand in the way of acquiring more tangible and more lasting spiritual happiness. Jesus renounced his life to acquire life everlasting.
Thus in this stanza, Gita emphasizes renunciation, not of a life in the world but of a selfish worldly life. The emphasis is laid on the renunciation of the fruits of dutiful actions, not on renunciation of actions themselves, as has been generally but erroneously supposed. Without action, life stagnates. Even the Lord is constantly engaged in action. Krishna tells
Arjuna in the Gita:
"Look on me
Thou son of Pritha! in the three wide worlds
I am not bound to any toil, no height
Awaits to scale, no gift remains to gain,
Yet I act here! and, if I acted not—
Earnest and watchful—those that look to me
For guidance, sinking back to sloth again
Because I slumbered, would decline from good,
And I should break earth’s order and commit
Her offspring unto ruin!"
Man should share the fruits of his activities and results of ambitions with his family, country, and world. The business man can be a man of renunciation if he earns money with the thought of the happiness of his family and fellow beings, and not just for his own comfort. The man who supports his family just for his own pride and comfort is not a man of renunciation, altho he is a better man than the selfish unmarried man. The man who unites his interests with the interests of humanity and works for humanity as he would for his own family, need not marry, but the man who avoids marriage to avoid responsibilities, is a selfish man and will not find the necessary spurs to achieve his own highest development.
The business man who spiritualizes his ambition by toiling and using his money, not only for his own family but in order to help others, is a man of renunciation. The Gita says that renunciation does not involve loss nor the flying away from worldly activities, but lies in spiritualizing worldly life, by acting for all and God.
Enjoy life with everybody. Include everyone in the circle of your family. Make money for helping others and making them happy, and not only for your own relatives. Gita thus advises one to receive the benefits of a life of renunciation and avoid the evils of selfishness. The consciousness of one who acts for himself becomes body-bound. The consciousness of one who lives for all, becomes one with the Cosmic Consciousness, which is identified with all. Hence, Gita says renunciation means the forsaking of the desire to enjoy one’s own fruits of action for self only.
Then again, the other extreme to be avoided is acting all the time, and becoming a business automaton, keeping one’s consciousness entangled constantly in the senses and their requirements. Over-activity and indiscriminate activity without reference to the spiritual life, is detrimental to spiritual progress. To perform all actions with the consciousness of fulfillment of a spiritual ideal is spiritual.
Outward renunciation leads to idleness, unpracticality, inactive stagnation. Over-activity makes an automaton of man and makes him forgetful of his highest duty to God. Without God’s help, no fulfillment of duty to parents, family or country is possible. Over-activity makes one one-sided. It defeats the very purpose for which one acts, the purpose of self-development. Activity which robs one of joy leads to spiritual inactivity or soul stagnation.
Jesus told his listeners to seek the kingdom of God first and then all the universe of things belonging to Him will come also. This is good counsel for the extraordinary person who can think of nothing but God, and for those nations which are over-gorged with materialism.
But the Gita’s saying is especially applicable for life as it is lived today by the average modern man, the business man, the professional man, the housewife, the laborer. The Gita says all actions are not wholesome; they cannot all lead to God. It says, first choose between dutiful and wrong actions. Every man should find the action which he should do, those actions which will harmoniously develop his material life, body, mind, and above all, his heart and soul. The average business and work which most of us find to do in this world is capable of leading to such self-development, provided the man seeks to discover its possibilities and to express them. All honest work is good work. All business that supplies the needs and requirements of mankind can be a work of love. Thru such work, we learn the lessons of service and cooperation, and justify our own existence in this world. The Gita says:
"He that abstains
To help the rolling wheels of this great world,
Glutting his idle sense, lives a lost life,
Shameful and vain. Existing for himself,
Self-concentrated, serving self alone,
No part hath he in aught; nothing achieved,
Nought wrought or unwrought toucheth him;
No hope of help for all the living things of earth
Depends from him.
Therefore, thy task prescribed
With spirit unattached gladly perform,
Since in performance of plain duty man
Mounts to his highest bliss. By works alone
Janak and ancient saints reached blessedness!"
Developing in an all-round manner makes right, dutiful actions inevitable. The Gita says, perform those right actions for developing yourself, not for your benefit only but for everyone’s welfare. To eat right and live right is to build the temple of soul beautiful. To keep yourself healthy, young and good is to help humanity with the example of health, youth and goodness. To be rich and help others to be rich is to help the failure-stricken with brave thoughts of prosperity and the infinite treasures of earth that await development. Hence, the Gita says, work and be spiritual, not for selfish gains but for the purpose of inspiring others with the example of your life. To keep yourself sick, a failure in mind and soul and material life is to show a bad example to the world, to sow discouragement. The Gita says that such persons who perform actions for all-round development act as heavenly gates opened to invite lost souls back to God’s mansion of joy. Gita says such persons are Yogis, are united to God, for they act, not to please themselves, since without Him they are nothing, but to fulfill the demands of truth, progress and God. They are men of renunciation, even though they lie in a palace and have millions, for they forsake the desire to perform actions for their own selfish welfare, and act to help all and to please God. It is not necessary and in most cases not desirable to live the life of a hermit or religious mendicant, to be a man of renunciation.
Gita distinctly says he is not a Yogi or man of renunciation who lives without sacrifice or who is inactive. Acting calmly, ambitiously for all, intelligently, interestingly, vigorously, undiscouragedly, doing right actions for harmonious development of self and of others, is Yoga and renunciation. Inactivity and wrong activity both should be avoided. They prevent the soul from expressing its inner qualities, and stultify it.
He loves God best who acts rightly. It matters not whether he works in the jungle of Hindustan or in the jungle of modern civilization. Both jungles have tests and difficulties. The former has ferocious tigers and the latter even more ferocious worries, temptations and struggles for living for false pleasures. One has to overcome both to gain freedom, to walk in joy, shorn of fear. Find the kingdom of celestial, perpetual happiness within, and heaven will reign in the territory of silence or in the noisy activity of the cities, wherever you may happen to be. God’s voice must be heard in the cave of meditation as well as in the mart of modern business.
* * *
Curd Curry is a good meat substitute. Boil one quart of milk in a double boiler or plain boiler. When the milk bubbles, add the strained juice of one orange and one lemon. Boil the milk until it curdles.
Strain the curd in a cheesecloth. Then bind the cloth tightly with a string. Put a weight on it that the water may run out. Then, after half an hour, cut the solidified curd in small one inch squares one-fourth inch thick. Fry them in butter till they are light brown.
They can be eaten that way, or made into a curry as follows: Take a teaspoonful of curry powder. Mix it with two tablespoonfuls of water. Fry the mixture in a pan with a tablespoonful of butter, until the water evaporates. Then pour one pint of hot water on it. Mix the curry well. Put one-half pound of French fried potatoes and the fried curd into the curry water. Boil to neutralize the frying. The water will evaporate, leaving a thick gravy. Add a little melted butter and serve.
AFTER THIS—By Swami Yogananda
After the prison petals of life fade,
And the soul scent slips
In the mighty wind of life,
No more would I love a flower cage life—
Unless to mingle
The dew-drop tears of other prison souls
And show them the way ...I freedom won.
I would not mind to dwell in roses,
Daffodils, for a time,
If that is of my own free will.
But forever to stay behind the bars of beauty
Of violet, sun-gold rays, I care not.
I will be no more compelled to live
Even in a golden heavenly cage.
From flower to flower I will fly,
I will wear the blackness of the night,
Shimmering with the busy stars,
I will be the twinkle of their lights,
I will be the waking of the dawn,
And burst forth
With the warming rays of friendship.
I will be the shepherd of stray souls,
Or the humblest lamb in all His fold.
I will be the most famous man,
Or the least unknown of a cycle;
I will be the tiniest spark of light,
Or roll as the massive vapours of Life;
I will dash my mighty soul
To wash against the rocks of worldly life.
I will be the clouds, donning rainbow garlands;
I will puff bubbles of planets with my breath,
And float them on waves of space.
I will be the babble of the brook,
And the voice of the nightingale.
I will surge in the sea of souls.
Holding the log of laughter,
I will float to the shores of Bliss.
I will sing through the voices of all,
I will preach through all temples and prayers,
I will love with the love of God,
I will think with the thoughts of all.
The hearts of all will be my heart,
The soul of all will be my soul—
The smile of all—my smile.
INTERESTING NEWS ITEMS
World Peace Conference
"There never has been a gathering in the United States so cosmopolitan as this Conference, nor one in which so many diplomats from foreign countries participated," said Congressman Theodore E. Burton, president of the American Peace Society, at its centennial meeting in Cleveland, May 7-11.
The five days of the Conference were called Ohio Day, Centennial Day, Neighbors Day, World Day, and Report Day. On the last day, five Commissions reported their findings on how the fields of Commerce and Industry, Justice, Education, Religion and the Social Agencies could better be utilized to insure world peace and international understanding. Speakers at the Conference included ambassadors, ministers and official representatives from England, France, Germany, Norway, Poland, Russia, Canada, Cuba, Nicaragua, Japan, Finland, Hungary, Lithuania, China, Ireland, Roumania, Czechoslovakia and Italy. Prominent churchmen, educators, clubwomen, judges, business men and social workers also spoke. The excellent work accomplished by this Conference brings the world a step closer to the goal of world peace.
First Anti-Lynching Law
"Nation-wide praise and congratulations are due the Hon. Henry F. Byrd, Governor of Virginia, for having signed the first anti-lynching law to be enacted by a Southern legislature," says the New Era. "This act well may become a model for other law-making bodies, state and national—as was the famous Virginia statute for religious freedom written by Thomas Jefferson and passed in 1785, two years before the national constitution was adopted. The two laws are essentially akin; each is designed to safeguard fundamental and inalienable rights."
Gandhi Re-Enters Politics
Mahatma Gandhi, who has not officially been the leader of any party in India for several years, has spent that time in constant tours through-out India, speaking to millions on the subjects of self-discipline, removal of untouchability, home-spinning activities and Hindu-Moslem unity. Gandhi, who is still recognized as the most formidable force in Indian politics, due to the love that the masses have for him as as Mahatma (great soul), recently announced at a Conference in Delhi that he would re-enter the political arena for the purpose of giving his whole time to the achievement of harmony between Hindus and Musselmen.
Valyi Analyzes Asia
Dr. Felix Valyi, editor and founder of the Revue Internationale Politique of Geneva and expert on Eastern affairs, who has recently come to America to found an Institute of Oriental Research and Comparative Civilization, declares that "even if England and Japan sent hundreds of thousands of men to China, they would not be able to check the Nationalist movement," according to an interview with the New York Times. "The Nationalist movement is not merely of a political character," he continued. "It is a profound intellectual movement and has the immense force of such.
"Western civilization came to Asia as undisguised force and exploitation without any kind of moral superiority of beauty. The young generation of Asia flung itself greedily on everything which came from the West.
"The Asiatics want now equality with America and Europe. They want the same increasing independence of the individual which we consider the highest type of human personality.
"The Asiatic revolt against white over-lordship has a deeper meaning than we imagine. They want to bring out again the creative power of the Asiatic mind. Western powers can only become victors in China by aiding the people, not by opposing them.
"There is still time to save the cause of the West in Asia, with the help of the Asiatic elite, but only on one essential condition: Asia must be recognized as equal to the rest of mankind.
"The Eastern people look to the Russian revolution for one single reason, because the Russian revolution accepted them on equal terms as human beings.
"But I am sure that if we show the Asiatics what Bolshevism means from the point of view of economic life, of individual freedom, of freedom of criticism, of freedom of thought, they will again return to the West for education and fellowship."
University of All Religions in India
The Sri Bharat Dharma Mahamandal, an educational and religious organization of large scope with headquarters at Jagatganj, Benares, India, has recently proposed the founding of a University of All Religions to be established at Benares, the oldest seat of learning in the world, for study and research in comparative theology, philosophy, metaphysics, Yoga and allied subjects, for the use of scholars and truth-seekers of all nations.
A magnificent plot of land has already been purchased for the site of the University. The heads of many religions and educational institutions have expressed their warm approval of the idea.
The Mahamandal has published a book called "The World’s Eternal Religion" (price three rupees or one dollar) which has summarized the important points of Hindu religion and philosophy, and brought the wealth of the Shastras and scriptures within reach of all seekers after knowledge. It is intensely interesting and enlightening.
President Coolidge Gives Talk
In an address at the Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, on May 19th, President Coolidge stressed the value of spiritual training as a part of worthy education. Mr. Coolidge said, "For chartered institutions of learning to turn back to the material and neglect the spiritual would be treason, not only to the cause for which they were founded but to man and God. . ."
Pointing out that the foundation of all enlightened civilization rests upon religion, the President continued: "Unless our people are thoroughly instructed in its great truths they are not fitted either to understand our institutions or to provide them with adequate support. For our independent colleges and secondary schools to be neglectful of their responsibilities in this direction is to turn their graduates loose with simply an increased capacity to prey upon each other. Such a dereliction of duty would put in jeopardy the whole fabric of society."
Universal Religious Peace Conference
A Universal Religious Peace Conference, under the auspices of the Church Peace Union, will be held next year to discuss the best means to achieve lasting world peace. A preliminary conference will be held in Geneva this September.
At the Conference it is planned to have 1,000 members, representing 29 countries, 45 nationalities, and all religions. The announcement reads:
The Conference "proposes to make an inventory of the elements of each of the great religions which can bring peace about. It will seek to find out how each religion may contribute to the building of international justice and good-will. It will seek to free the spirit which peace demands."
Praises Kellogg’s Peace Plan
The same Church Peace Union has recently adopted a resolution commending Secretary Kellogg for his advocacy of the multilateral treaties. "Even where Governments have not accepted them in toto, they have received them with cordiality and endorsed them in principle, and every day sees increasing interest in them on the part of all nations," the resolution read. "They seem to have caught the imagination of the world, perhaps because they strike directly at the root of the evil, declaring for the absolute renunciation of war as an instrument of national policy."
Judge Hylan Mayor Candidate
Friends of Judge John F. Hylan, attorney for the Yogoda Sat-Sanga Society, have recently announced that he will stand for re-election for the office of Mayor of New York City. Judge Hylan was recently mayor of New York for eight years. His excellent record and fine character will doubtless stand him in good stead at the coming election.
Keyserling Praises America
Count Hermann Keyserling, the German philosopher, who has recently completed a tour of America, expressed the following opinions in an interview with The New York Times:
"I find that you are at the beginning of a new civilization," he said, "and that is something that has happened since I was here sixteen years ago. Then you were still in the Colonial period, your Homeric age, or age of mythology. Your history began, I think, with the World War."
By a new civilization, Count Keyserling went on to explain, he did not mean our tall buildings and vast systems of railroads. That was simply pioneering, he said.
"And I am not sure either just what your new civilization will be," he continued. "It may possibly be the first civilization based on general prosperity that has ever existed. That seems likely, for you are a socially gifted nation. There is a lot of bunkum about social service and lots of people use it for their own advantage, but I think Americans sincerely think along social lines. I think they sincerely think in terms of their neighbor."
Count Keyserling said that a civilization was the product of the circumstances which a people encountered and that each nation produced its own sort.
"I doubt if you will produce many philosophers like the Greeks and the Germans," he said. "That is not where your ability lies, and each nation should follow its own particular genius."
Count Keyserling said the size and grandeur of America had something to do with the sort of civilization it produced.
America Akin to China and Russia
"And my experience bears me out," he said. "America is a vast country and China and Russia are also large. I have found America is closer to Russia and China in understanding than it is even to Europe. John Dewey, the philosopher, who is one of the most important people living in American, is followed in Russia, and is revered as no one has been since the time of Mencius in China. Yet he is unknown in Europe."
Tribute to Dr. Sunderland
A dinner in honor of Dr. J. T. Sunderland was given by the India Society of America in New York on May 25th. Dr. Sunderland, who is a Unitarian minister, has served the cause of India for forty years and has written many books on the Orient. He is deeply revered in India, and Mahatma Gandhi, Rabindranath Tagore, and other Indian leaders sent special messages of appreciation on the occasion of this dinner in honor of India’s most indefatigable Western champion.
Peace Dinner on Buddha’s Birthday
The Maha-Bodhi Society of America celebrated the 2472nd Birthday Anniversary of Guatama Buddha with a Peace Dinner at the Aldine Club in New York City, on May 4, 1928. The East and the West met in harmony on this, one of the happiest anniversaries in history. The guests of honor were Hon. F. W. Lee, Representative of the Nanking Nationalist Government of China, and Mme. Lee; Hon. S. R. Bomanji of India, lately Vice-President, Indian Chamber of Commerce of Bombay; Hon. Kiyoshi Uchiyama, Consul General of Japan, and Mme. Uchiyama; Hon. Ali Akber Kaichif, Commercial Attache to the Persian Legation at Washington; Hon. Charles W. Atwater, Consul General of Siam; and Hon. A. Munir Suryea Bey, Consul General of Turkey. Dr. Charles Fleischer, the celebrated publicist, acted as the toastmaster. The topic of the evening was "The Orient and World Peace". The guests of honor spoke. Other speakers included Claude Bragdon of the Theosophical Society; Swami Gnaneshwarananda of the Vedanta Society; Horace Holley of the Bahai Brotherhood; Alfred W. Martin of the Ethical Society; Villa Faulkner Page of the New Thought and B. K. Roy, founder of The Humanist Society. There were present men and women of all walks of life representing almost every nation on the earth. Part of the address of the Hon. Charles W. Atwater, American Consul General of Siam, was as follows:
"It is a privilege to take part in this occasion. While I am not born to a knowledge of the Orient, my official connection with the Kingdom of Siam has made me see how much the Orient has to give to the Occident.
"In fact the Orient and the Occident have much to give to each other. Buddhism as a religion of the Orient, as it seems to me, in practice at least, lays emphasis on self development. The religion of the West lays its ethical emphasis on service to others. Service is more ably performed where self development has taken place. Self is developed best through service.
"At this Peace Dinner I make the suggestion that men of religion preach more thoroughly that the way to attain peace and prosperity is through understanding. By ‘understanding’ I mean knowing what our fellow man means when he speaks.... As we honor the great leaders of religion for the truths they have spoken, so let holy men preach again and again that in the infinite mind that knows all creeds and castes it is as holy for a business man in temptation to speak truth in routine affairs as for a great philosopher to proclaim a cosmic truth."
Ancient Indian Science
Dr. V. R. Kokatnur, a Hindu chemist, recently read a paper before the American Chemical Society convention in Detroit, in which he gave evidences that prove that Cavendish and Priestly were not the first men to discover hydrogen and oxygen, but that the sages of ancient India knew of these gases. He read another paper to point out that chemistry was not of Semitic by of Aryan origin. The members of the convention, in agreeing that the evidences he offered were conclusive, voted him a special vote of thanks for his original and valuable re-research. The papers read by Dr. Kokatnur will appear in Isis, a scientific journal published in many languages.
Dr. Noguchi Martyr to Science
Prof. Hideyo Noguchi, Japanese bacteriologist of the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, passed away at Accra in Africa on May 21st, a victim of yellow fever contracted in a laboratory experiment in 1927. Dr. Noguchi, who received his medical degree form the Tokio Medical College, was the most distinguished pathologist of his race. He was knighted by the King of Denmark, the King of Sweden, and the King of Spain, and honored by the Emperor of Japan.
Dr. Noguchi was classed with such scientists as Pasteur and Metchnikoff in his work for humanity. Many medical riddles owe their solution to his original research work, for which he had a special genius. The efforts of Dr. Noguchi were largely responsible for the overcoming of the yellow fever outbreaks in Central and South America. This distinguished bacteriologist, of whom John D. Rockefeller, Jr., said, "He was a great soul; a great man has completed a great work," was considered a "human dynamo" in his work, which absorbed him so completely that he was oblivious to the world for weeks at a time when laboring on some bacteriological discovery.
Three Parsi cyclists of India have recently returned to Bombay after completing their world tour, during which they cycled thru twenty-seven countries in fifty-three months. They crossed the four deserts of Persia, Mesopotamia, Syria and Sinai, and are the first cyclists to have crossed the Rocky Mountains in America.
The Indian wrestler, Gama, who holds the world’s wrestling championship, recently defeated the great Polish wrestler, Zybvsco, in a few seconds before a crowd of 40,000 at Patiala in India.
Behold, I have set before thee, a door opened, Which none can shut.—Revelations.
APPLICATIONS FOR TEACHERS’ COURSE
Swami Yogananda wants to recruit a Spiritual Army. Yogoda needs real workers, robust in body and mind, of calm disposition, mental shock-absorbers who will allow nothing to upset or anger them, who will join Yogoda for life, or who can receive at least one year’s training to be teachers, according to the rules of the institution. These rules will be printed as soon as possible in this magazine. Make your application now, telling your occupation, education, age, marital status, also financial condition (if you wish to give this information). Please send a recent photograph of yourself. The Yogoda Teachers Training School has not yet been opened, and no residential students are accepted at present. But plans are going forward all the time to start this work at the earliest possible moment. Watch EAST-WEST for news of all plans and developments.
LOS ANGELES NEWS
The yearly Sunrise Easter Service was conducted on the beautiful Mount Washington Center grounds, under the sky, on Easter, at dawn. A large gathering of Yogoda students and their friends assembled. The Rev. Walter W. Raymond spoke. There was special music by Miss Pahina, Hawaiian soprano.
Swami Dhirananda, leader of the Yogoda Sat-Sanga headquarters on Mount Washington, spoke on May 27th to several hundred people on "The Religion of Joy". The monthly Hindu Dinner followed the services. Mrs. Cassidy, wife of former Congressman Cassidy, the Hon. James McLachlan, and Mrs. Ralph Reynolds, were special guests.
Mrs. Cassidy gave an inspiring talk on her recent trip to India, telling of her love for that country and her realization of its wonderful culture. Another dinner speaker was Mrs. Woolett, head of the Hollywood Girls School who spoke on education. Mrs. Goulding, wife of a prominent moving picture director of Hollywood, also spoke. The Countess Ilya Tolstoy and the Hon. James McLachlan told of their love for the Mount Washington Center and the work it is doing.
On June 15th, Swami Dhirananda will speak at the Wamsley studios in Hollywood on "the Practical Religion of Yoga".
He will also address the Church of the Divine Science in July. The Sunday topics on which Swami Dhirananda will speak at Mount Washington Center during June are "Depths of Perception", "Self-Knowledge at the House of Death—a Dialogue", "St. Paul’s Message to Athenians and Ephesians", and "The Philosophy of Karma." The non-sectarian Sunday School for children is held each Sunday at 2 p.m.
SUCCESS IN PHILADELPHIA
Swami Yogananda gave a series of lectures at the Lu Lu Temple in Philadelphia, from April 2nd to May 10th. The Philadelphia Public Ledger reported the opening lecture as follows:
"Two thousand women and men at Lu Lu Temple last night heard Swami Yogananda, poet and metaphysician of India, appeal for a better understanding between Eastern and Western civilizations and a more careful study by Americans of the result of thousands of years of study by masters of India . . . ."
These lectures proved so interesting to the people of Philadelphia that the Swami gave four more lectures on May 20-23. Dr. Irvin J. Morgan, famous organist, played the organ at the Temple on these occasions.
The lectures were followed by Yogoda classes, at the City Club, of several hundred students, among them Dr. Morgan, Eugene Del Mar, noted writer and lecturer, A. D. Williams, M.D., Mr. T. F. Clabby, Mr. and Mrs. H. F. Sieber, and a number of other distinguished Philadelphians.
Swami Addresses Clubs
Swami Yogananda addressed the City Business Club on April 30th, and the Philadelphia Optimist Club on May 1st. He spoke to a distinguished gathering of 600 women of the Penn Athletic Club on "Everlasting Youth" on May 8th.
The Soroptimist Club heard him on May 9th on "My Mother India." He addressed the City Club on May 18th, on "India’s Contribution to American Business Methods." The Lions Club heard him on June 5th.
Noted Organist Gives Yogoda Tribute
Dr. Irvin J. Morgan, internationally-known organist and composer, was a member of Swami Yogananda’s recent Yogoda class in Philadelphia. Dr. Morgan called by John Wanamaker "the king of organists," was the Director of Music at Wanamaker’s, playing the world’s largest organ, for seven years. Dr. Morgan has appeared in concerts with two other distinguished Yogoda students, Madame Amelita Galli-Curci and Dr. Luigi von Kunits, conductor of the New Symphony Orchestra of Toronto, Canada. Dr. Morgan tells in the following words what Yogoda has meant to him:
"The tremendous revelation now filling my consciousness, through the Yogoda teaching, seems beyond the power of words to describe. The philosophy and practice of this ‘three-fold system’ for body, mind and soul will not disappoint the sincere investigator, but will open many of the hidden springs of life to him, that are now seemingly closed. It is no exaggeration to say that Swami Yogananda has brought a true, but somewhat abstruse subject, down to earth again, for these modern times, and not only presented its philosophy in clear and simple terms, but its practice as well, which quickly produces the results promised, beyond all other systems I have thus far studied from India since 1906.
"Unlike some of these, ‘Yogoda’, when correctly apprehended, seems established within you, and on a solid foundation, seven days of the week!
"This system should become of world importance, for all branches of learning, and in all institutions, as a real factor in all-round education. It not only holds, but opens, the meaning of life enunciated at the Creation and even prior thereto. This system is sane on every count and I can assure all, its conscious use brings results."
Dr. Morgan is the author of the following beautiful tribute to the organ, which is often read at organ dedication services, and used for marble tablets on organs:
Majestic grandeur,—silently or voiced
Thrills all who in thy wondrous presence stands,
A reverent hush, thy muted tones compel,
While rolling thunders shake the earth, thy spell
Enthralls all animate and inanimate life;
Declaring thou art monarch over all.
Thy tonal range and change of every sound
Known in the heavens, the earth, the sky, the sea,
Revealer of the world that is to be
Interpreter of Heaven’s symphony.
YOGODA CENTER NEWS
The Detroit Yogoda Sat-Sanga Center, under the leadership of Brahmachari Nerode, gave a vegetarian dinner in honor of Swami Yogananda on April 24th. About 165 students attended. There was a fine musical program and a talk by the Swami, who expressed his joy to be with his beloved Detroit students once more.
On April 22nd, the Swami visited his Cincinnati students, and addressed them at the Walnut Hills Masonic Temple.
New Buffalo Center
On April 12th, Swami Yogananda visited his Buffalo students. He was much pleased that a number of them had been meeting regularly for the past year at the Hotel Statler to review their lessons. Although the Swami had not established a Buffalo Yogoda Center on the occasion of his visit there in 1927, he agreed, during his latest visit, to the students’ proposal that they form a local Yogoda group. The Swami appointed Mrs. Anna Krantz as the leader. He addressed the students on "The Power of Truth."
Pittsburgh Anniversary Banquet
The secretary of the Pittsburgh Yogoda Center has sent in the following report:
"On Saturday, April 14th, the Pittsburgh Yogoda Sat-Sanga Center had the great pleasure of having Swami Yogananda as honor guest at its Second Anniversary banquet, attended by several hundred students. A short talk was given by Judge A. D. Brandon, of Pittsburgh Morals Court, who spoke very highly of Swami Yogananda and his work. Dr. Joe Shelby Riley, or Minneapolis, also paid the Swami a tribute of love.
"Swami Yogananda gave a short talk on a higher Journalism. He asked all those present to make a practice of writing to the daily newspapers at intervals, asking them not to print scandal and murder headlines, but instead something of a spiritual and educational nature.
"On Sunday night, the Swami talked to the Yogoda students and their friends on ‘The Power of Truth versus Untruth’. This subject was taken with special reference to Miss Mayo’s book, ‘Mother India’. He stated India had been crucified by her book, as Jesus was crucified by Judas. Dhan Gopal Mukerji’s book, ‘A Son of Mother India Answers’, exposes the false statements in Miss Mayo’s book. ‘The book’s main contention is definitely disproved by statistics,’ writes Rev. Alden H. Clark, who has been a missionary in India for seventeen years. The Swami concluded by bringing out that the power of truth is greater than the power of untruth. Evil may have power, but the power of truth has different methods. It may come slowly, but when it comes, darkness goes before the flood of light."
The Minneapolis and St. Paul Yogoda Centers report very interesting meetings and a variety of speakers at their weekly gatherings.
Indian Leader for Washington
The new leader for the Washington Yogoda Society, Brahmachari Jotin, has recently arrived from India. On June 10th, Swami Yogananda and the Brahmachariji visited the Washington center and addressed the assembled students. Brahmachari Jotin, a graduate of the University of Calcutta, was a pupil and resident of Swami Yogananda’s school in Ranchi, India, and the founder of a Center in Calcutta of the Ex-Students (Alumni) of Ranchi. The Washington students are enthusiastic over his arrival, as they have long wanted a resident Indian leader.
He should be addressed as "Brahmachariji". "Brahmachari" means, one who practices self-discipline. "Ji" is a suffix denoting respect, which is usually added on to names or titles in India, as, Swamiji, Gandhiji, et cetera.
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During the summer vacation, Swami Yogananda will visit Madame Galli-Curci and Homer Samuels at their summer home in the Catskills. He will also spend some time with Mr. Alvin Hunsicker and Mr. J. W. Mott at their Paupac estate in Pennsylvania. In the fall he will start his lecture series again.
NEWS FROM INDIA
Maharajah Sir Manindra Chandra Nundy, K. D. I. E., of Kasimbazar, the patron of the Ranchi Brahmacharya School, founded by Swami Yogananda, recently paid several visits to
the School, accompanied by his worthy son and heir, Maharaj-Kumar Srish Chandra Mundy, M.A., M.L.C. They were highly pleased to see the development of the institution and its growing activities, which include regular academic study, Yogoda and Brahmacharya (self-discipline) training, agricultural and industrial work, night school and village-cooperation activities.
The benign Maharajah spent much time with the teachers and students of Ranchi, entertaining them and dining with them. He expressed his pleasure at the good work being done by Swami Yogananda in America, and spoke of his desire to have practical sympathy and cooperation with the West in this noble cause of true, all-round education.
The Principal of the Ranchi School reported the encouraging support that is being given to the Ranchi School and its aims and principles, from the public. People from various parts of the country have been expressing their approval of the moral and non-sectarian religious training at Ranchi, which is the backbone of proper education. Requests to start branch schools have been coming before the Ranchi workers.
Maharajah Opens New Center—10,000 Attend Ceremonies
On April 24, 1928, during the holy hours of the birthday of Sri Sankaracharya, the great wise man of the East, a branch Brahmacharya Ashram of the Ranchi institution was established at Purulia, eighty miles distant from Ranchi. The enthusiasm of the people of Purulia and the energetic work of the organizer, Mr. K. C. Bose, a senior teacher of the Ranchi School, made the opening ceremonies a wonderful success. The Maharajah Bahadur of Kasimbazar performed the opening ceremony of this branch center amidst the holy atmosphere created by the devotion of the ten thousand people assembled for the occasion. The special feature of this branch center will be Rural Reconstruction work, and the training up of young men who will be real servants of Indian society by exemplifying plain living and high thinking.
"Search not for truth on dusty shelves,
But in the scriptures of yourselves.
—J. H. Cousins.
MISCELLANEOUS NOTES—By Dale Stuart
An American edition of "Father India", which was first published in London, has been undertaken by Louis Carrier, 33 East 10th St., New York city, at $2.00 a copy. This book by C. S. Ranga Iyer, a member of the indian Legislative Assembly, is a reply to and expose of the falsehoods in Miss Mayo’s notorious book against India.
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Dr. Sudhindra Bose of the University of Iowa, foremost lecturer on Oriental Politics in America, who is visiting India at present, has written a long article in the eminent Indian daily, Forward, eulogizing the Yogoda work which Swami Yogananda is doing in the United States., and comparing it to the work accomplished here by Swami Vivekananda.
Dr. Bose writes: "The bitter ferocity of the attacks made on India by Katherine Mayo has made all India indignant. The question now is, How should India meet the black fury of these false accusations? We are told in a good many quarters that India should have her own aggressive propagandists in America. Without a doubt they can do much for the good of India; but they need not all be students of politics. We must needs have men abroad who can tell the world of India’s cultural wealth—her history, literature, philosophy, religion, art and architecture. One of the most effective cultural missionaries which India now has in the United States is Swami Yogananda. He has a dynamic spiritual message."
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ARCHER. This beautiful magazine is a publication of the Society of Friends of Roerich Museum, New York. Each issue contains several reproductions of the famous Russian painter’s masterpieces. The latest issue also includes "dairy leaves" of Prof. Roerich’s wanderings in Tibet and Chinese Turkestan, and several unusual short stories and poems.
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A very able, interesting and thoughtful discussion of modern religion appeared in four parts in the Century Magazine from March to June, 1928. These articles, entitled "Christianity and This Business Called Life", "Mental Science and Occultism", "The Hindu and His Philosophy" and "What we all believe," are written by an American who has studied Buddhism in Ceylon, Hinduism in India at the Ramakrishna missions, and Theosophy with Mrs. Besant. In England, Europe and America he lived with Anglican and Roman Catholic groups, and studied Christian Science and New Thought. His article on Hindu Philosophy is understanding and enlightening. The whole series is well worth reading.
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Miss Mayo recently spoke at Vassar College against India, but, to her chagrin, the girls of that school asked her such searching questions and many of them defended India so ably that her expected effect was greatly spoiled. The Vassar young women had known Indian womanhood thru Miss Anadibai Joshi, who graduated from there last year, and thus were not to be duped by Miss Mayo.
Miss Mayo poured forth her undisguised hatred of all things of India in her shameful book after only four months’ stay in that vast and complex land.
However, India does not lack her defenders in America. Besides the splendid articles in Current History by Prof. Cornelius and the Atlantic Monthly by Rev. Alden Clark, and Mukerji’s "A Son of Mother India Answers" (Dutton and Co., N. Y.), which is now in its fourteenth edition, many ministers and educators have openly denounced Miss Mayo’s book as untrustworthy and wicked. John Haynes Holmes of the Community Church in New York, and Sherwood Eddy, Chairman of the United Christian Churches of New York, have forcefully condemned the book. The Vassar College Political Club invited Mr. Gogate to debate with Miss Mayo, and Prof. Cornelius also offered to debate with her, but she has declined all such offers, for reasons fairly obvious, since the glaring falsity of her main statements have been exposed time and time again by those who know the real India.
The Nation (New York) published a large part of Mahatma Gandhi’s review of the book, in which he compared it to a "report of a drain inspector" and says that Miss Mayo knows nothing of the soul of the peoples of India. Dr. Rabindranath Tagore’s letter to The Nation was also published, with the result that many Americans were led to read his original article on
Hindu Marriage which appeared in Count Keyseling’s book on Marriage. Thus the readers were in a position to observe the deliberate and inexcusable liberties which Miss Mayo took with Dr. Tagore’s writings in an effort to misrepresent him and mislead the American people.
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Prof. Ernest Wood, an English writer, philosopher and Sanskrit scholar, whose home is in Madras, recently gave a fascinating and authoritative series of four lectures in New York for the purpose of acquainting Americans with India as he knew her, and thus correct the false impressions given recently by Katherine Mayo. Dr. Wood is the founder of the Sind National College, Hyderabad, and the Madanapelle College of the Madras University.
Dr. Wood said in one of his lectures, "In matters of practical psychology India is far in advance of the Western world. The knowledge is held by men who deserve the title given them—that of ‘holy men’. They treat their powers with great reverence, and are unwilling to even indicate that they possess them unless they feel that they are talking to a person who is highly religious."
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The two articles "Yellow Journalism versus Truth" and "Spiritualizing the Newspapers", which appeared in the lasts two issues of EAST-WEST, and in which Swami Yogananda pleaded for a higher standard of journalistic activity, have attracted attention and praise from various quarters. Certain Indian journals have reprinted them. "These splendid articles are timely and much needed," wrote Louis E. Van Norman, formerly editor of The Nation’s Business and foreign editor of The Literary Digest and The Review of Reviews.
In this connection it is encouraging to note, according to an Associated Press dispatch from Washington on April 20th, that "after hearing the faults of journalistic practice as recited by representatives of the law, medicine and the ministry, the American Society of Newspaper Editors, in convention here, amended its constitution today to provide for stringent action against any member found guilty ‘of violation of the code of professional ethics’ of the organization. . . .
"Clarence Darrow, criminal lawyer, assailed the newspapers on several points, around which he wound at the same time a condemnation of the social system in this country. . . . Dr. Joseph Collins of New York. . . . assailed fabrication and syndication of news as a ‘blight’ on journalism, declaring that the population was becoming standardized under the influence of the consequent uniformity of its reading matter.
"The ministerial opinion was given by the Rev. Dr. Ralph W. Sockman. . . . who said that newspaper editors often lack ‘a sense of proportion.’. . . . The newspaper space given to crime was also criticized by Secretary Work of the Interior Department, who said: ‘While all news may be made fit to print, that of the underworld is not wholesome and has no proper place in ethical journals.’"
The inspiring Biblical passage, "Beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace," could well serve as the motto for ethical journalism.
THE PRIEST—By Anna Augusta von Helmholtz-Phelan
They sit before him,
Breathless, still. . . .
The thousand hearts whose silence hushed
Weaves a halo round his head.
They wait to breathe the ether of his dream,
To take from him the chalice of new hope,
To gather in their yearning souls
The deathless beauty that he brings,
Like music visible,
From paradisal courts.
Beneath his magic, golden voice,
That weaves a sacred dome above their heads,
Yet seems to reach to skiey portals far,
The incessant wounds of daily life
Cease all to burn and ache;
And for a sweet, swift-passing hour
The clenched hand of destiny
Relaxes her grim hold.
They sit before him,
The thousand hearts like to one chalice made,
And wait to hear him speak the deathless words:
Et verbum caro factum est!
No, no! The energy of life may be
Kept in after the grave, but not begun;
And he who flagged not in the earthly strife,
From strength to strength advancing—only he;
His soul well-knit, and all his battles won,
Mounts, and that hardly, to eternal life.
NEW YOGODA TESTIMONIALS
"For years I have searched for the teaching which Yogoda has brought. To me it is the Ultima Thule of all teaching, highest in spirituality and in practicality for every day use."—A.D. Williams, M.D., 701 Horn Bldg., Philadelphia.
"Yogoda has been a Godsend to me in every way. My health in general is improving, and I can read without the use of glasses."—Mrs. Lillie Meekens, 1810 Montrose St., Philadelphia.
"Through the practice of Yogoda, my thinking powers have been greatly quickened and my power of observation wonderfully developed. Yogoda has given me more strength of character and will-power. It has undoubtedly developed my self-reliance, and made me more master of myself. Yogoda has embued my thoughts with greater strength; it has made my speech more convincing and forceful, and has filled my actions with confidence, purpose and vigor. In this way, it has caused others to recognize my power so that they have given me their respect, confidence and esteem. I have found this power of personality a most gratifying experience, and others will find this one of the greatest encouragements and incentives in studying Yogoda."—Mary W. Davenport (school teacher), 3955 Ludlow St., Philadelphia.
"I have never laid much stress on the teachings of the Bible. But your interpretation has changed all that."—William Eschemann, 722 N. 16 St., Philadelphia.
"Yogoda has meant life eternal to me, opening up the gates of heaven wherein I may find the bliss, the supernal glory of the radiant Father-Mother-God. No other course I have taken in the past can equal Yogoda. Truly there is no comparison to be made. It is the living truth of Jesus Christ demonstrated, the ‘truth that maketh free forever’, the truth that all the apostles knew."—M. F. Smith, 876 No. Holly St., W. Philadelphia.
"Since taking Yogoda lessons, I have been wonderfully benefitted, both physically and spiritually. My nerves have greatly improved. Yogoda has brought the realization of Truth to me, for which I have long been searching."—Mrs. F. Rankin, 1316 N. Marvine St., Philadelphia.
"Yogoda has meant much to me., It has healed me of an awful internal complaint I had for years, due to a fall on the ice."—E. Corson, 189 W. Huntington St., Philadelphia.
"Yogoda has meant untold blessings. My soul has been uplifted. I thank the saints and master minds of India. May this truth girdle the earth and bring forth much fruit."—A. Ellis, 1424 Christian St., Philadelphia.
"Yogoda is uplifting in its purpose and, as a spiritual message, will mean a solution for all who can receive it."—Mrs. Harrison Smith, The Bellevue-Stratford, Philadelphia.
"Thru Yogoda I have learned how to call on the highest forces within me, and how to operate them; how to reach the cosmic consciousness, and to tune in with the divine Law forever and ever!"—E. Bedner, 508 N. 5 St., Philadelphia.
"Yogoda teachings are not only inspirational but have the power of awakening dormant energies. Through its devotional exercises, one can realize spiritual contact of cosmic vibrations and know healing, spiritual or material fulfillment."—S. B. Young, 1107 Wallace St., Philadelphia.
"I was healed of a long-standing complaint."—Anna Mininger, 431 W. Norris St., Philadelphia.
"I received a wonderful healing in my back, and also in my eyes."—A. M. Carnell, 6610 N. 6 St., Philadelphia.
"My eyes are so much stronger and I can see so very much clearer."—Ana Quann, 2216 Pemberton St., Philadelphia.
"During the chanting prayer, as the Swami said ‘Father’, I found I was involuntarily taking very deep breaths. The constant burning pain which I always have, lifted, and as the Swami said, ‘Open your eyes’, I did so, and distinctly saw his face, which previously had been a blur."—C. Hamilton, 5953 Wister Street, Philadelphia.
"Yogoda is thoroughly scientific and practical. Results gained by a serious trial of this system are remarkable. Faithful practice of its technique and exercises leads one to the Highest Realization in physical, mental and spiritual development. The weak and robust are benefitted. I shall not fail to recommend it to all seeking for a more efficient life."—Dr. W. T.
W. Gall, ophthalmologist and neurologist, 172 St. James Place, Buffalo.
Spend an evening at the
Ceylon India Inn
A REFRESHING breath of the Orient in New York. Enjoy the East Indian dishes and delicacies of various kinds in an Oriental atmosphere.
A new floor charmingly decorated has been recently added. The management is now in position to serve the patrons for banquets, dinners and private parties.
For reservations phone Bryant 7642.
K. Y. Kira, Proprietor.
CEYLON INDIA INN
148 West 49th Street
New York City
AN UNIQUE TANTRIC CHAKRA
From the Collection of A Prince of Nepal, Exquisitely set with mystic stones, opals, beryls, amethyst, etc. An apparatus for Yogic and other spiritual exercises. A Veritable work of Art, Scarce and Unique. For Photographs and other particulars, write to
MANAGER: R U P A M:
6 Old Post Office Street,
"Secrets of the Orient"
HINDU-LOTUS SCALP HYGIENE
There is no one thing enhances a woman so much as beautiful hair.
The first essential of lovely hair is its lustre. Dull, drab, dusty-looking hair can deaden a personality.
HINDU-LOTUS Scalp Hygiene eliminates dandruff and keeps the scalp in a healthy condition.
Don’t neglect your hair, for it is alive. It needs food, stimulation, exercise, attention, just like every other body cell. Only healthy hair can be beautiful.
HINDU - LOTUS Hair Oil destroys dandruff and renews the life and growth of the hair.
"Secrets of the Orient"
HINDU TOOTH POWDER
A mouth hygiene. In the Orient this Hindu Tooth Powder is an old favorite among those fastidious people whose favor is accorded only to the most exquisite toilet accessories.
Cleanses thoroughly and safely, and makes the teeth white as pearls. Strengthens and firms the gums. Antiseptic and beneficial.
24 Stone St., New York City.
A Monthly Magazine
Reflecting the new world outlook based upon current
developments in Science, History, Philosophy, and Religion.
We stand at the dawn of a tremendous Renaissance which has already begun to transform racial and national habits and customs rooted in the traditions of thousands of years.
For the awakened mind there can be no more thrilling spectacle—no greater privilege—than to share the spirit and view-points of the leaders who have caught the vision of the New Age.
World Unity Magazine has become the most effective interpreter of the new forces at work in the most important departments of life. It is creating a new literature—a new culture—vastly stimulating to its international circle of readers.
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