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A HERMIT IN THE HIMALAYAS
perfect triangle. A long time must pass before I disappear into
external retreat again; before I forsake humanity and abandon
the claims of social existence.
And when the day comes for me to prepare to begin a longer
journey than that from Himalaya I shall be ready. I know that the
stillness here found will pass with me into the world of death and
befriend me in a region where riches must fail.
Put into a small packet, the ultimate message of Himalaya is
SILENCE, that silence which carries the breath of God in its hush.
In that Silence mankind may find its proof of the existence of God,
of the reality of a universal Power behind Nature which is ever-
present and ever-working. To me life shall ever after be bigger and
nobler because I have lived here.
I think the final news which I shall bring away from these peaks
' is also extremely ancient—that of God's reality. The higher Power
is 1*0 mere article of belief to me, but a verity—authentic, undeniable
and supreme, even though It be so hidden.
I think too that I have learned the highest wisdom is to find and
then surrender to this Power. But to discover It we need to go into
the Silence every day for a little while, retiring from the outer world
to enter the inner world wherein It abides.
God will not lower His mode of speech in order that unfamiliar
mortals may comprehend. We must learn His language or go without
His message. His language is nothing else than this stillness. And He
is no more distant from us than our own selves.
The corollary of this is that man need never mourn his possibk
extinction. The hope of immortality is the herald of its realization.
In his profoundest moments he may feel and experience its truth.
Although this thought has been uttered and echoed even by ua-
percipient persons to the point of platitudinous boredom,, it happens
to be true. Man's body will pass as certainly as those pale mists
which glitter on the sombre peaks before me, but he shall keep the
integrity of his own self, for it is divine.
I know this, not because some bible or clergyman has told me so,
but because I have entered the Silence. When I sat in my mountain
sanctuary, I felt myself being lifted at times out of my body and
floating gently upwards into the air. I could see all the landscape
around, all the familiar sights and scenes of forest, ridge, ravine and
snowy summit. I was not asleep and I was not dreaming, yet once,
when a servant came to call me, I was unable to move hand or
limb although I heard him. I was incapable of speaking or moving,
yet I could quite ctcarly observe my surroundings in a totally
detached manner. My body was as dead, yet / was still alive. This
convinced me that I shall survive more than a thousand argument:,