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Full text of "A hermit in the Himalayas"

A  HERKHT  IN  THE  HIMALAYAS

desire is to use his power for the benefit of all his subjects. For
instance, two years ago we had a tremendous earthquake in Nepal
which shook and split the land from end to end of its five-hundred
mile length. Our capital town of Katmandu was almost completely
shattered to pieces. His Highness went to live in a temporary
shelter. He stayed there for a long time. When the public and his
relatives repeatedly begged him to rebuild his palace he replied,
'Not until my people are comfortably rehoused will I allow a single
stone to be laid for my own home.*

"His Highness, incidentally, is a daredevil rider on horseback
and will make his horse gallop furiously dowo the steepest slopes of
the Himalayas. Even our best cavalry officers cannot keep up with
his riding."

A little later I learn that:

"The Sherpa tribesmen, who help us so largely in the various *
Mount Everest climbing expeditions, live in Nepal near the Kang-
lachen Pass, Their courage and endurance have made possible the
results already achieved in these enterprises, and without them
your British mountaineers could never reach die heights attained.**

When we reach the top of the crag we sit down and surrender
ourselves to contemplation of the panorama which unfolds itself.
I then rest for a half-hour in silent meditation and the Prince joins
in this speechless friendship. I sense the peace that coils itself around
us both in spirals* I squat beside him and let my mind disengage
itself from its moorings and slip gently back into the holy Source
whence it derives its life. Without difficulty it abandons itself
to the interior existence, where all is perfect, where all is calm, where
all is heavenly, I do not realize how short a time thus passes, for
time indeed has taken itself off as an unwelcome entity. I know
only that I have thrown off the rags of personal vanity and in-
tellectual pride, that I have been suddenly humbled, and that I
sit wearing the robes of ineffable reverence before the great power
of Nature that has manifested itself with such over helming grandeur*
Take back thy truant child, O Great Mother, I cry silently, and
let him henceforth depend upon thy guidance and thy love alone.
In her high presence the true relationship betwixt man and his
Maker discloses itself anew, and there is a hush as poignant and as
gentle as the hush of eventide.

When we arise and begin the return journey, a quiet smile of
understanding passes between us, but there is no verbal reference
to what we have felt.

This evening I hear an extraordinary story from Prince Mussooree
about an experience which came to him several years ago.

"In your book A Search in Secret Egypt you have described a