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Full text of "A hermit in the Himalayas"

A   HERMIT   IN   THE   HIMALAYAS

have had ample time to try these faiths. If we could not experiment
with them properly during the centuries near the lifetimes of their
Inspirers, we never shall. Let us not delude ourselves. There is no
such thing as a return to the past The original inspiration of every
religion is also its most vital one. Much can be done under its
influence which later can only be copied without heart and without
fire. The wheels of the clock cannot work reversely, do what we
may. The past must now take care of itself. This is precisely what
Jesus meant when he said, "Let the dead bury the dead." We
must study life in the living present, not in the dead past. The world
is still waiting for its Redeemer. The old religions have lost their
dynamic. The real Christians were those who were flung as martyrs
to the lions.

Let us start our learning of the Truth clear from obstructive
vestiges of mummified dogmas.

If the oracles of ancient civilizations are now all but silent, then
the oracles of the modern world must speak their word. Inspiration
itself does not lie in the grave, even though its earlier instruments do.

If Christ came to Camden Town, as Blake in the beauty of his
spiritual understanding supposed he might, no one would recognize
him, for the simple reason that our false education would lead us to
expect a descent of flaming chariots from the open sky or else a
radiant mist-like figure seen as in a dream; whereas he would
more likely be found walking quietly along the High Street, with
but few marks on his face to distinguish him from other carpenters
walking that undistinguished street in an undistinguished neigh-
bourhood.

No one nowadays dreams of calling Jesus mad, yet when he
first moved and preached among the babbling crowd of bearded
Pharisees the latter murmured scornfully among themselves, "Thou
madman!" It was not until later, when they saw that he indeed
meant what he said and "cast out them that sold and bought in the
temple, and overthrew the tables of the money-changers", that they
took him seriously. Then, when he had become a menace to their
own positions, and to their own grip upon the masses, they "sought
how they might destroy him; for they feared him, because all the
people was astonished at his doctrine". They were afraid as ever to
wake up from their miserable illusions. They preferred prejudice to
principle and pride to truth. They would flee the Overself, for they
feared it would bring them loss. Foolish wicked people! There was
nothing to be lost, but all to be gained.

Alas, "for Jesus himself testified that a prophet hath no honour
in his own country."

Therefore "he left Judaea and departed again into Galilee,

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