The Rampa Story/Chapter Ten
“Lobsang! Lobsang!” I turned restlessly in my sleep. The pain in my chest was acute, the pain of that clot. Gasping, I returned to consciousness. Returned to hear again, “Lobsang!”
“My!” I thought, “I feel terrible!”
“Lobsang,” the voice went on. “Listen to me, lie back and listen to me.”
I lay back wearily. My heart was pumping and my chest was thobbing in sympathy. Gradually, within the darkness of my lonely room, a figure manifested itself. First a blue glow, turning to yellow, then the materialized form of a man of my own age. “I cannot astral travel tonight,” I said, “or my heart will surely cease to beat and my tasks not yet ended.”
“Brother! We well know your condition, so I have come to you. Listen, you need not talk.”
I leaned back against the bed-head, my breath coming in sobbing gasps. It was painful to take a normal breath, yet I had to breathe in order to live.
“We have discussed your problem among us,” said the materialized lama. “There is an island off the English coast, an island which was once part of the lost continent of Atlantis. Go there, go there as quickly as you can. Rest a while in that friendly land before journeying to the continent of North America. Go not to the western shores whose coastline is washed by the turbulent ocean. Go to the green city and then beyond.”
Ireland? Yes! An ideal place. I had always got on well with Irish people. Green city? Then the answer came to me; Dublin, from a great height, looked green because of Phoenix Park and because of the River Liffey flowing from the mountains down to the sea.
The lama smiled approvingly. “You must recover some part of your health, for there will be a further attack upon it. We would have you live so that the Task may be advanced, so that the Science of the Aura may come nearer to fruition. I will go now, but when you are a little recovered, it is desired that you visit again the Land of the Golden Light.”
The vision faded from my sight, and my room was the darker for it, and more lonely. My sorrows had been great, my sufferings beyond the ability of most to bear or to understand. I leaned back, gazing unseeingly through the window. What had they said on a recent astral visit to Lhasa? Oh, yes! “You find it difficult to obtain employment? Of course you do, my brother, for you are not part of the Western world, you live on borrowed time. The man whose living space you have taken would have died in any case. Your need, temporarily for his body, more permanently for his living space, meant that he could leave the Earth with honour and with gain. This is not Kharma, my brother, but a task which you are doing upon this, your last life on Earth.” A very hard life, too, I told myself.
In the morning I was able to cause some consternation or surprise by announcing, “We are going to live in Ireland. Dublin first, then outside Dublin.”
I was not much help in getting things ready, I was very sick, and almost afraid to move for fear of provoking a heart attack. Cases were packed, tickets obtained, and at last we set off. It was good to be in the air again, and I found that breathing was much easier. The airline, with a “heart-case” passenger aboard, took no risks. There was an oxygen cylinder on the rack above my head.
The plane flew lower, and circled over a land of vivid green, fringed by milk-white surf. Lower still, and there was the rumble of an undercarriage being lowered, followed shortly by the screech of the tires touching the landing strip.
My thoughts turned to the occasion of my first entry to England, and my treatment by the Customs official. “What will this be like?” I mused. We taxied up to the airport buildings, and I was more than a little mortified to find a wheel-chair awaiting me. In Customs the officials looked hard at us and said, “How long are you staying?”
“We have come to live here,” I replied.
There was no trouble, they did not even examine our belongings. The Lady Ku'ei fascinated them all as, serene and self possessed, she stood guard on our luggage. These Siamese cats, when properly trained and treated as beings, not just animals, are possessed of superlative intelligence. Certainly I prefer the Lady Ku'ei's friendship and loyalty to that of humans; she sits by me at night and awakens my wife if I am ill!
Our luggage was loaded on a taxi, and we were driven off to Dublin city. The atmosphere of friendliness was very marked; nothing seemed to be too much trouble. I lay upon my bed in a room overlooking the grounds of Trinity College. On the road below my window, traffic moved at a sedate pace.
It took me some time to recover from the journey, but when I could get about, the friendly officials of Trinity College gave me a pass which enabled me to use their grounds and their magnificent library. Dublin was a city of surprises; one could buy almost anything there. There was a far greater variety of goods than there is in Windsor, Canada, or Detroit, U.S.A. After a few months, while I was writing Doctor from Lhasa, we decided to move to a very beautiful fishing village some twelve miles away. We were fortunate in obtaining a house overlooking Balscadden Bay, a house with a truly amazing view.
I had to rest a very great deal, and found it impossible to see through the windows with binoculars because of the distorting effect of the glass. A local builder, Brud Campbell, with whom I became very friendly, suggested plate glass. With that installed, I could rest on my bed and watch the fishing boats out in the bay. The whole expanse of harbor was within my view, with the Yacht Club, the harbor master's office and the lighthouse as prominent features. On a clear day I could see the Mountains of Mourne, away in British occupied Ireland, while, from Howth Head, I could dimly see the mountains of Wales far across the Irish Sea.
We bought a second-hand car and often journeyed up into the Dublin Mountain, enjoying the pure air and the beautiful scenery. On one such trip we heard of an elderly Siamese cat who was dying from an immense internal tumor. After much pressure, we managed to take her into our household. The best veterinary surgeon in the whole of Ireland examined her but thought she had only hours to live. I persuaded him to operate to remove the tumor caused by neglect and too many kittens. She recovered, and proved to have the sweetest nature of any person or animal I have ever met. Now, as I write, she is walking round like the gentle old lady she is. Quite blind, her beautiful blue eyes radiate intelligence and goodness. The Lady Ku'ei walks with her, or directs her telepathically so that she does not bump into things or hurt herself. We call her Granny Greywhiskers as she is so much like an elderly granny walking around, enjoying the evening of her life, after raising many families.
Howth brought me happiness, happiness that I had not known before. Mr. Loftus, the policeman, or “Guard” as they are called in Ireland, frequently stopped to chat. He was always a welcome visitor. A big man, as smart as a Guard at Buckingham Palace, he had a reputation for utter fairness and utter fearlessness. He would come in, when off duty, and talk of far-off places. His “My God, Doctor, ye've brains to throw away!” was a delight to hear. I had been badly treated by the police of many countries, and Guard Loftus, of Howth, Ireland, showed me that there were good policemen as well as the bad which I had known.
My heart was showing signs of distress again, and my wife wanted the telephone installed. Unfortunately all the lines of “The Hill” were in use so we could not have one. One afternoon there came a knock at the door, and a neighbour, Mrs. O'Grady, said, "I hear you want the telephone and cannot get it. Use ours at any time you like—here is a key to the house!” The Irish treated us well. Mr. and Mrs. O'Grady were always trying to do something for us, trying to make our stay in Ireland even more pleasant. It has been our pleasure and our privilege to bring Mrs. O'Grady to our home in Canada for an all too brief visit.
Suddenly, shockingly, I was taken violently ill. The years in prison camps, the immense strains I had undergone, and the unusual experiences had combined to make my heart condition serious indeed. My wife rushed up to the O'Grady's house and telephoned a doctor to come quickly. In a surprisingly short time, Dr. Chapman came into my bedroom, and with the efficiency that comes only from long years of practice, got busy with his hypodermic! Dr. Chapman was one of the “old school” of doctors, the “family doctor” who had more knowledge in his little finger than half a dozen of the “factory produced” State aided specimens so popular today. With Dr. Chapman and me it was a case of “friends at first sight!” slowly, under his care, I recovered enough to get out of bed. Then came a round of visiting specialists in Dublin. Someone in England had told me never to trust myself to an Irish doctor. I did trust myself, and had better medical treatment than in any other country of the world. The personal, the human touch was there, and that is better than all the mechanical coldness of the young doctors.
Brud Campbell had erected a good stone wall round our grounds, replacing a broken one, because we were sorely troubled by trippers from England. People used to come on excursions from Liverpool and enter the gardens of the Howth people and camp there! We had one “tripper” who caused some amusement. One morning there was a loud knock at the door. My wife answered it, and found a German woman outside. She tried to push her way in, but failed. Then she announced that she was going to camp on our doorstep until she was allowed in to “sit at the feet of Lobsang Rampa.” As I was in bed, and certainly did not want anyone sitting at my feet, she was asked to go. By afternoon she was still there. Mr. Loftus came along, looking very fierce and efficient, and persuaded the woman to go down the hill, get on a bus for Dublin, and not come back!
They were busy days, with me trying not to overtax my strength. Doctor from Lhasa was now completed, but letters were coming in from all over the world. Pat the Postman would come wheezing to the door, after the long climb up the hill. “Ah! Good marnin' to ye,” he would say to whoever answered his knock, “And how is Himself today? Ah, sure the letters are breakin' me back!”
One night as I lay upon my bed watching the twinkling lights of Portmarnock, and of the ships far out to sea, I was suddenly aware of an old man sitting gazing at me. He smiled as I turned in his direction. “I have come,” he said, “to see how you progress, for it is desired that you go again to the Land of the Golden Light. How do you feel?”
“I think I can manage, with a little effort,” I replied.
“Are you coming with me?”
“No,” he answered, “for your body is more valuable than ever before, and I am to stay here and guard it.”
During the past few months I had suffered greatly. One of the causes of my suffering was a matter which would cause a Westerner to recoil in disbelief; the whole changeover of my original body had taken place. The substitute body had been teleported elsewhere and allowed to fall to dust. For those who are sincerely interested, it is an old Eastern art and can be read about in certain books.
I lay for a few moments, collecting my strength. Outside the window a late fishing boat went phut-phutting by. The stars were bright, and Ireland's Eye was bathed in moonlight. The old man smiled and said, “A pleasant view you have here!” I nodded silently, straightened my spine, folded my legs beneath me, and drifted off like a puff of smoke. For a time I hovered above the headland, gazing down at the moonlit countryside. Ireland's Eye, the island just off the coast, farther out the Island of Lambay. Behind glowed the bright lights of Dublin, a modern, well-lit city indeed. As I rose higher, slowly, I could see the magnificent curve of Killenye Bay, so reminiscent of Naples, and beyond— Greystones and Wicklow. Off I drifted, out of this world, out of this space and time. On, to a plane of existence which cannot be described in the languages of this three-dimensional world.
It was like going from darkness into the sunlight. My Guide, the Lama Mingyar Dondup, was awaiting me. “You have done so well, Lobsang, and have suffered so much,” he said. “In a short time you will be returning here not to leave again. The struggle has been worthwhile.” We moved together through the glorious countryside, moved to the Hall of Memories where there was much yet to learn.
For some time we sat and talked, my Guide, an august group, and I. “Soon,” said one, “you will go to the Land of the Red Indians and there we have another task for you. For a few short hours refresh yourself here, for your ordeals of late have sorely taxed your strength.”
“Yes,” remarked another, “and be not upset by those who would criticize you, for they know not whereof they speak, being blinded by the self imposed ignorance of the West. When Death shall close their eyes, and they become born to the Greater Life, then indeed will they regret the sorrows and troubles they have so needlessly caused.”
As I returned to Ireland the land was yet in darkness, with just a few faint streaks shooting across the morning sky. Along the long stretch of sands at Clontarf the surf was breaking with a sighing moan. The Head of Howth loomed up, a darker shape in the pre-dawn darkness. As I floated down, I glanced at our rooftop. “Dear me!” I remarked to myself. “The seagulls have bent my aerial rods. I shall have to call in Brud Campbell to put them straight.” The old man was still sitting by my bedside. Mrs. Fifi Greywhiskers was sitting on the end of my bed as if on guard. As I entered my body and re-animated it, she came up to me, rubbed against me and purred. She uttered a low call, and Lady Ku'ei came in, jumped on the bed and took up her station on my lap. The old man gazed down upon them in marked affection and remarked, “Truly entities of a high order. I must go, my brother.”
The morning post brought a savage assessment from the Irish Income Tax Office. The only Irish people I dislike are those connected with the Tax Office; they seemed to me to be so unhelpful, so unnecessarily officious. For writers in Ireland, the tax is absolutely penal, and it is a tragedy, because Ireland could well do with those who would spend money. Tax or no tax, I would rather live in Ireland than in any other place in the world except Tibet.
“We will go to Canada,” I said. Gloomy looks greeted that statement. “How will we take the cats?” I was asked.
“By air, of course, they will travel with us,” I answered.
The formalities were considerable, the delays long. The Irish officials were helpful in the extreme, the Canadians not at all helpful. The American Consulate offered far more help than did the Canadian. We were fingerprinted and investigated, then we went for our medical examinations. I failed. “Too many scars,” said the doctor. “You will have to be X-rayed.” The Irish doctor who X-rayed me looked at me with compassion. “You must have had a terrible life.” he said. “Those scars . . .! I shall have to report my findings to the Canadian Board of Health. In view of your age I anticipate that they will admit you to Canada, subject to certain conditions.”
The Lady Ku'ei and Mrs. Fifi Greywhiskers were examined by a veterinary surgeon and both pronounced fit. While waiting for a ruling about my case, we made enquiries about taking the cats on the plane with us. Only Swissair would agree, so we provisionally booked with them.
Days later I was called to the Canadian Embassy. A man looked at me sourly. “You are sick!” he said. “I have to be sure that you will not be a charge on the country.” He fiddled and fiddled, and then, as if with immense effort, said, “Montreal has authorized your entry provided you report to the Board of Health immediately you arrive, and take whatever treatment they say you need. If you don't agree, you can't go,” he said, hopefully. It seemed very strange to me that so many Embassy officials in other countries are so needlessly offensive; after all, they are merely hired servants, one cannot always call them “civil servants!”
We kept our intentions private; only our closest friends knew that we were going and knew where we were going. As we knew to our cost, it was almost a case that if we sneezed, a press reporter would come hammering at the door to ask why. For the last time we drove around Dublin, and around the beauty spots of Howth. It was indeed a wrench to even think of leaving, but none of us are here for pleasure. A very efficient firm in Dublin had agreed to drive us to Shannon in a bus, us, the cats, and our luggage.
A few days before Christmas we were ready to go. Our old friend Mr. Loftus came to say good-bye, and to see us off. If there were not tears in his eyes, then I was much mistaken. Certainly I felt that I was parting from a very dear friend. Mr. and Mrs. O'Grady came to see us, Mr. O'Grady taking the day off for that purpose. "Ve O'G" was openly upset, Paddy was trying to hide his emotion with a show of joviality which deceived no one. I locked the door, gave the key to Mr. O'Grady to mail to the solicitor, got in the bus and we drove away from the happiest time of my life since I left Tibet, drove away from the nicest group of people I had met in long, long years.
The bus rushed along the smooth highway to Dublin, threading through the city's courteous traffic. On, and into open country skirting the mountains. For hours we drove on, the friendly driver, efficient at his task, pointing out landmarks and being solicitous of our welfare and comfort. We stopped half way for tea. The Lady Ku'ei likes to sit up high and watch the traffic and yell encouragement to whoever is driving her. Mrs. Fifi Greywhiskers prefers to sit quietly and think. With the bus stopped for tea, there was great consternation. Why had we stopped? Was everything all right?
We continued on, for the road was long and Shannon far distant. Darkness came upon us and slowed us somewhat. Late in the evening we arrived at Shannon Airport, left our main luggage, and were driven to the accommodation we had booked for the night and the next day. Because of my health and the two cats we stayed at Shannon a night and a day, leaving on the next night. We had a room each, fortunately they had communicating doors, because the cats did not know where they wanted to be. For a time they wandered around, sniffing like vacuum cleaners, “reading” all about people who had previously used the rooms, then they fell silent and were soon asleep.
I rested the next day, and looked round the Airport. The “Duty-Free” Shop interested me, but I could not see the use of it; if one bought an article one had to declare it somewhere and then pay duty, so what was the gain?
The Swissair officials were helpful and efficient, the formalities were soon completed and all we waited for was the plane. Midnight came and went, one o'clock. At one- thirty we were taken aboard a big Swissair plane, we, and our two cats. People were most impressed by them, by their self-control and composure. Not even the noise of the engines disturbed them. Soon we were speeding along the runway faster and faster. The land dropped away, the River Shannon flowed briefly beneath a wing and was gone. Before us the wide Atlantic surged, leaving a white surf along the coast of Ireland. The engine note changed, long flames trailed from the glowing exhaust pipes. The nose tilted slightly. The two cats looked silently at me; was there anything to worry about, they wondered. This was my seventh Atlantic crossing, and I smiled reassuringly at them. Soon they curled up and went to sleep.
The long night wore on. We were traveling with the darkness, for us the night would be some twelve hours of darkness. The cabin lights dimmed, leaving us with the blue glow and a faint prospect of sleep. The droning engines carried us on, on at thirty-five thousand feet above the gray, restless sea. Slowly the pattern of stars changed. Slowly a faint lightening was observed in the distant sky on the edge of the Earth's curve. Bustling movement in the galley, the clatter of dishes, then, slowly, like a plant growing, came the lights. The amiable Purser came walking through, ever attentive to his passengers' comfort. The efficient cabin crew came round with breakfast. There is no nation like the Swiss for efficiency in the air, for attending to the passengers' wants, and for providing truly excellent food. The cats sat up and were all attention at the thought of eating again.
Far off to the right a hazy gray line appeared and rapidly grew larger. New York! Inevitably I thought of the first time I had come to America, working my way as a ship's engineer. Then the skyscrapers of Manhattan had towered heavenwards, impressing with their size. Now, where were they? Not those little dots, surely? The great plane circled, and a wing dipped. The engines changed their pitch. Gradually we sank lower and lower. Gradually buildings on the ground took shape, what had appeared to be a desolate waste resolved itself into Idlewild International Airport. The skilled Swiss Pilot set the plane down with just a faint scrunch of tyres. Gently we taxied along the runway to the Airport buildings. “Keep your seats, please!” said the Purser. A gentle “thud” as the mobile stairway came to rest against the fuselage, a metallic scraping, and the cabin door was swung open. “Good-bye,” said the cabin crew, lining the exit, “Travel with us again!” Slowly we filed down the stairway and into the Administrative Buildings.
Idlewild was like a railway station gone mad. People rushed everywhere, jostling any that stood in their path. An attendant stepped forward, “This way, Customs clearance first.” We were lined up by the side of moving platforms. Great masses of luggage suddenly appeared, moving along the platforms, stretching from the entrance to the Customs man. The Officials walked along, rummaging through open cases. “Where you from, folks?” said an Officer to me.
“Dublin, Ireland,” I replied.
“Where you going?”
“Windsor, Canada,” I said.
“Okay, got any pornographic pictures?” he asked suddenly.
With him settled, we had to show Passports and Visas. It reminded me of a Chicago meat packing factory, the way people were “processed.”
Before we left Ireland we had booked seats on an American plane to fly us to Detroit. They agreed to take the cats in the plane with us. Now the officials of the Airline concerned repudiated our tickets, and refused to take our two cats who had crossed the Atlantic without trouble or fuss. For a time it seemed that we were stuck in New York, the Airline was not remotely interested. I saw an advertisement for “Air taxis to anywhere” from La Guardia Airfield.
Taking an airport limousine we went the several miles to a Motel just outside La Guardia. “Can we bring in our cats?” we asked the man at the registration desk. He looked at them, two demure little ladies, and said, “Sure, sure, they're welcome!” The Lady Ku'ei and Mrs. Fifi Greywhiskers were glad indeed to have a chance to walk about and investigate two more rooms.
The strain of the journey was now telling upon me. I retired to bed. My wife crossed the road to La Guardia, trying to find what an air taxi would cost, and when we could be taken. Eventually she returned looking worried. “It is going to cost a lot of money!” she said.
“Well, we cannot stay here, we have to move,” I replied.
She picked up the telephone and soon arranged that on the morrow we would fly by air taxi to Canada.
We slept well that night. The cats were quite unconcerned, it even seemed that they were enjoying themselves. In the morning, after breakfast, we were driven across the road to the Airport. La Guardia is immense, with a plane taking off or landing every minute of the day. At last we found the place from whence we were to go, and we, our cats, and our luggage were loaded aboard a small twin- engined plane. The pilot, a little man with a completely shaven head, nodded curtly to us, and off we taxied to a runway. For some two miles we taxied and then pulled in to a bay to wait our turn to take off. The pilot of a big inter-continental plane waved to us, and spoke hurriedly into his microphone. Our pilot uttered some words which I cannot repeat, and said, “We have a —— puncture.”
The air was rent by a screaming police siren. A police cruiser raced madly along a service road and pulled up alongside us with a mad squeal of tires. “Police? What have we done now?” I asked myself. More sirens, and the fire brigade arrived, men spilling off as the machines slowed. The policemen came across and spoke to our pilot. They moved away to the fire engine, and at last the police and firemen moved off. A repair car raced along, jacked up the plane in which we were sitting, removed the offending wheel-and raced off. For two hours we sat there waiting for the wheel to be returned to us. At last the wheel was on, the pilot started his engines again, and we took off. Off we flew, over the Alleghany range, headed first for Pittsburg. Right over the mountains the fuel gauge—right in front of me—dropped to zero and started knocking against the stop. The pilot seemed blandly unaware of it. I pointed it out and he said, in a whisper, “Ah, sure, we can always go down!” Minutes after we came to a level space in the mountains, a space where many light planes were parked. The pilot circled once, and landed, taxiing along to the petrol pumps. We stopped just long enough to have the plane refuelled, and then off again from the snow-covered, frozen runway. Deep banks of snow lined the sides, great drifts were in the valleys. A short flight, and we were over Pittsburg. We were sick of traveling, stiff and weary. Only the Lady Ku'ei was alert, she sat and looked out of a window and appeared pleased with everything.
With Cleveland beneath us, we saw Lake Erie right in front. Great masses of ice were piled up, while fantastic cracks and fissures ran across the frozen lake. The pilot, taking no risks, made course for Pelee Island, half way across the lake. From there he flew on to Amherstburg, and on to Windsor Airport. The Airport looked strangely quiet. There was no bustle of activity. We moved up to the Customs Building, alighted from the plane, and went inside. A solitary Customs man was just going off duty—it was after six at night. Gloomily he contemplated our baggage. “There is no Immigration Officer here,” he said. “You will have to wait until one comes.” We sat and waited. The slow minutes crawled by. Half an hour, time itself seemed to stand still, we had had no food or drink since eight o'clock that morning. The clock struck seven. A relief Customs man came in and dawdled about. “I can't do a thing until the Immigration Officer has cleared you,” he said. Time seemed to be going more slowly. Seven-thirty. A tall man came in and went to the Immigration Offlcer's office. Looking frustrated and a little red in the face, he came out to the Customs man. “I can't get the desk open,” he said. For a time they muttered together, trying keys, banging pushing. At last, in desperation, they took a screwdriver and forced the desk lock. It was the wrong desk, it was quite empty.
Eventually the forms were found. Wearily we filled them in, signing here, signing there. The Immigration Officer stamped our Passports “Landed Immigrant”.
“Now you go to the Customs Officer,” he said. Cases to open, boxes to unlock. Forms to show, giving details of our belongings as “Settlers”—More rubber stamps, and at last we were free to enter Canada at Windsor, Ontario. The Customs Officer warmed up considerably when he knew we came from Ireland. Of Irish descent himself, with his Irish parents still living, he asked many questions and— wonder of wonders—he helped carry our luggage to the waiting car.
Outside the Airport it was bitter, the snow was thick upon the ground. Just across the Detroit River the skyscrapers towered aloft, a mass of light as all the offices and rooms were illuminated, for Christmas was at hand.
We drove down the wide Ouellette Avenue, the main street of Windsor. The River was invisible, and it looked as if we were going to drive straight to America. The fellow who was driving us did not seem at all sure of his directions; missing a main intersection, he made a remarkable maneuver which made our hair stand on end. Eventually we reached our rented house and were glad indeed to alight.
Very soon I had a communication from the Board of Health demanding my presence, threatening terrible things —including deportation—if I did not attend. Unfortunately threats seem to be the main hobby of the Ontario officials, that is why we are now going to move again, to a more friendly Province.
At the Board of Health I was X-rayed, more details were taken, and at last I was allowed to go home again. Windsor has a terrible climate, and that and the attitude of officials soon decided us to move as soon as this book is written.
Now the Rampa Story is finished. The truth has been told, as in my other two books. I have much that I could tell the Western world, for in astral traveling I have touched merely upon the fringe of things which are possible. Why send out spy planes with its attendant risks when one can travel in the astral and see inside a council chamber? One can see and one can remember. Under certain circumstances one can teleport articles, if it be wholly for good. But Western man scoffs at things he does not understand, yells “faker” to those who have abilities which he himself does not possess, and works himself into a frenzy of vituperation against those who dare to be in any way “different”.
Happily I put aside my typewriter and settled down to entertain the Lady Ku'ei and blind Mrs. Fifi Greywhiskers who both had waited so patiently.
That night, telepathically, came the Message again. “Lobsang! You have not yet finished your book!” My heart sank, I hated writing, knowing that so few people had the capacity to perceive Truth. I write of the things which the human mind can accomplish. Even the elementary stages described in this book will be disbelieved, yet if one were to be told that the Russians had sent a man to Mars, that would be believed! Man is afraid of the powers of Man's mind, and can contemplate only the worthless things like rockets and space satellites. Better results can be achieved through mental processes.
“Lobsang! Truth? Do you remember the Hebrew tale? Write it down, Lobsang, and write also of what could be, in Tibet!”
A Rabbi, famed for his learning and his wit, was once asked why he so often illustrated a great truth by telling a simple story. “That,” said the wise Rabbi, “can best be illustrated by a parable! A parable about Parable. There was a time when Truth went among people unadorned, as naked as Truth. Whoever saw Truth turned away in fear or in shame because they could not face him. Truth wandered among the peoples of the Earth, unwelcome, rebuffed, and unwanted. One day, friendless and alone, he met Parable strolling happily along, dressed in fine and many colored clothes. ‘Truth, why are you so sad, so miserable?’ asked Parable, with a cheerful smile. ‘Because I am so old and so ugly that people avoid me,’ said Truth, dourly. ‘Nonsense!’ laughed Parable. ‘That is not why people avoid you. Borrow some of my clothes, go among people and see what happens.’ So Truth donned some of Parable's lovely garments, and wherever he now went he was welcome.” The wise old Rabbi smiled and said, “Men cannot face naked Truth, they much prefer him disguised in the clothing of Parable.”
“Yes, yes, Lobsang, that is a good translation of our thoughts, now the Tale.”
The cats wandered off to sit on their beds and wait until I really had finished. I picked up the typewriter again, inserted the paper, and continued . . .
From afar the Watcher sped, gleaming a ghostly blue as he flashed over continents and oceans, leaving the sunlit side of the Earth for the dark. In his astral state he could be seen only to those who were clairvoyant, yet he could see all and, returning later to his body, remember all. He dropped, immune to cold, untroubled by thinness of air, to the shelter of a high peak, and waited.
The first rays of the morning sun glinted briefly on the highest pinnacles of rock, turning them to gold, reflecting a myriad of colors from the snow in the crevices. Vague streaks of light shot across the lightening sky as slowly the sun peeped across the distant horizon.
Down in the valley strange things were happening. Carefully shielded lights moved about, as if on trailers. The silver thread of the Happy River gleamed faintly, throwing back flecks of light. There was much activity, strange, concealed activity. The lawful inhabitants of Lhasa hid in their homes, or lay under guard in the forced-labor barracks.
Gradually the sun moved upon its path. Soon the first rays, probing downwards, glinted upon a strange shape that loomed up far across the Valley floor. As the sunlight grew brighter the Watcher saw the immense shape more clearly. It was huge, cylindrical, and on its pointed end, facing the heavens above, were painted eyes and a tooth- ensnagged mouth. For centuries the Chinese seamen had painted eyes upon their ships. Now, upon this Monster the eyes glared hate.
The sun moved on. Soon the whole Valley was bathed in light. Strange metal structures were being towed away from the Monster, now only partly enshrouded in its cradle. The immense rocket, towering on its fins, looked sinister, deadly. At its base technicians with headphones on were running about like a colony of disturbed ants. A siren sounded shrilly, and the echoes rebounded, from rock to rock, from mountain wall to mountain wall, blending into a fearful, horrendous cacophony of sound which built up, becoming louder and louder. Soldiers, guards, laborers, turned on the instant and ran as fast as they could to the shelter of the distant rocks.
Halfway up the mountain side the light glinted on a little group of men clustered around radio equipment. A man picked up a microphone and spoke to the inhabitants of a great concrete and steel shelter lying half concealed about a mile from the rocket. A droning voice counted out the seconds and then stopped.
For scant moments nothing happened, there was peace. The lazy tendrils of vapor seeping from the rocket were the only things that moved. A gush of steam, and a roaring that grew louder and louder, starting small rock-falls. The earth itself seemed to vibrate and groan. The sound became louder and louder until it seemed that the ear-drums must shatter under such intensity. A great gout of flame and steam appeared from the base of the rocket, obscuring all below. Slowly, as if with immense, with stupendous effort, the rocket rose. At one time it seemed to be standing stationary on its tail of fire, then it gathered speed and climbed up into the quaking heavens, booming and roaring defiance to mankind. Up, up it went, leaving a long train of steam and smoke. The scream vibrated among the mountain tops long after all sight of it had gone.
The group of technicians on the mountainside feverishly watched their radarscopes, yammered into their microphones, or scanned the skies with high-power binoculars. Far, far overhead a vagrant gleam of light flashed down as the mighty rocket turned and settled on its course.
Scared faces appeared from behind rocks. Little groups of people congregated, with all distinction between guards and slave-laborers temporarily forgotten. The minutes ticked on. Technicians switched off their radar sets, for the rocket had soared far beyond their range. The minutes ticked on.
Suddenly the technicians leapt to their feet, gesticulating madly, forgetting to switch on the microphones in their excitement. The rocket, with an atomic warhead, had landed in a far distant, peace-loving country. The land was a shambles, with cities wrecked, and people vaporized to incandescent gas. The Chinese Communists, with the loudspeakers full on, screamed and shouted with glee, forgetting all reserve in the joy of their dreadful accomplishment. The first stage of war had ended, the second was about to start. Exulting technicians rushed to make the second rocket ready.
Is it fantasy? It could be fact! The higher the launching point of a rocket; the less the atmosphere impedes it and so it takes far, far less fuel. A rocket launched from the flat lands of Tibet, seventeen thousand feet above sea level, would be more efficient than one launched from the lowlands. So the Communists have an incalculable advantage over the rest of the world, they have the highest and most efficient sites from which to launch rockets either into space or at other countries.
China has attacked Tibet—not conquered it—so that she shall have this great advantage over Western powers. China has attacked Tibet so that she shall have access to India, when she is ready, and perhaps drive on through India to Europe. It could be that China and Russia will combine to make a pincer thrust which could crush out the free life of all countries that stood in their way. It could be—unless something is done soon. Poland? Pearl Harbor? Tibet? “Experts” would have said that such enormities could not be. They were wrong! Are they going to be wrong again?