by Victor and Victoria Trimondi
Visionary fascism was, and indeed still is, exceptionally deeply fascinated by the Buddhocratic form of state. In the late thirties (as the various fascist systems bloomed in Europe and the whole world) Spencer Chapman, a traveler in Tibet, wrote that even in the days of the dictators one can only be amazed at what uncontested power the Dalai Lama possesses” . The idea of kingship of the world, the uniting of spiritual and secular power in a single person, the ideology of war in the Shambhala myth, the uncompromisingly androcentric orientation, the tantric vision of the feminine, the whole occult ambience and much more besides were specifically adopted by several fascist ideologists and welded together into an aggressive myth. As we shall soon see, entire fascist systems are based upon the adoption of Tibetan/tantric doctrines.
The Fourteenth Dalai Lama’s national socialist friends
As depressing as it may be for the Nobel peace prize winner’s followers, there has been continuous contact between the Dalai Lama and the far right wing and former national socialists (Nazis). His close friendship with his German mentor, Heinrich Harrer has become the most well-known of these. It caused a small scandal in 1997-1998 when, after years of research, the Austrian journalist, Gerald Lehner, succeeded in making public Harrer’s “brown-shirt” (i.e., German fascist) past, which the latter had been able to keep secret for many years. Harrer is not just anybody. He is one of the best-known international authors and has sold over four million books in 57 languages (mostly about Tibet and the Fourteenth Dalai Lama).
The Austrian mountain climber and competition skier joined the SS on April 1, 1938 and in the same year received instructions to climb Nanga Parbat in the Himalayas after an official meeting with Adolf Hitler. Heinrich Himmler, himself most interested in occult phenomena is said by Harrer to have offered him a Tibet expedition. In 1942, the Reichsführer of the SS (Himmler) ordered the creation of the Sven Hedin Institut für Innerasienforschung [Sven Hedin Institute for Central Asian Research]. This educational establishment had combined esoteric, scientific, and racial studies goals. It was completely in this vein that Himmler was interested in occult doctrines from “mysterious Tibet”, and assumed — probably under the influence of theosophical ideas — that a “race with Nordic blood” existed there, oppressed by the English and Chinese, and waiting for their liberation by the Germans. Himmler’s “advisor”, reports the German magazine Spiegel, “… and the scientist Ernst Schäfer believed that Tibet was the cradle of humanity, the refuge of an ‘Aryan root race’, where a priestly caste had created a mysterious kingdom of Shambhala — decorated with the Buddhist symbol of the wheel of teaching, a Swastika. In 1934 Schäfer set out on the first of two expeditions financed by the SS to track down remnants of the ‘Nordic intellectual’ nobility” (Spiegel, 16/1998, p. 111).
Dr. Ernst Schäfer, a specialist on Tibet and an ornithologist, was one of Himmler’s personal staff and in 1943 took over the scientific leadership of the notorious project, “Ahnenerbe” (‘ancestral inheritance’), primarily devoted to racial studies. His third research trip to the Himalayas was officially described as the “SS Schäfer Expedition” and was considered a huge success. Upon his return in August 1939, the scientist was presented with the SS skull ring and dagger of honor in recognition. Subsequently, the Reichsführer of the black corps (Himmler) had grand plans for his protégé: Schäfer was supposed to return to Tibet and “stir up the Tibetan army against the British/Indian troops” with a shock troop of 30 men . The undertaking was, however, called off at Hitler’s direct order. In the years to follow, Schäfer instead built up the Sven Hedin Institute for Central Asian Research with great success, making it the largest division within the Ahnenerbe project.
But let us return to Heinrich Harrer. War broke out while he was still in India and the young German was interned by the British. It was not until 1944 that he was able to flee to Tibet with a comrade. Coincidence or fate led to his acting as the young Dalai Lama’s personal tutor until the early 50s, and teaching him about all the “wonders” of western civilization and introducing him to the English language as well. It is very likely that his lessons were tainted by the contemporary Zeitgeist which had swept through Hitler’s Germany, and not by the British attitudes of the envoy Hugh Richardson, also present in Lhasa. This led in fact to some problems at the court of the young god-king and the English were not happy about his contact to Harrer. But there are nevertheless no grounds for describing the lessons the former SS member gave his “divine” pupil as fascist, particularly since they were primarily given after the end of the World War II. In 1952 His Holiness’s German “teacher “ returned to Europe.
The adaptation to film of Harrer’s autobiographic bestseller, Seven Years in Tibet, triggered an international protest. Since the famous traveler through Tibet had told director Jean Jacques Annaud nothing about his “brown-shirt” past, and this only became public knowledge after the film had been finished, Annaud felt pressured to introduce “corrections”. A remorseful Austrian was now shown, who begins his mountain-climbing career as a supporter of a regime accused of genocide and then, under the influence of the young Kundun and Tibetan Buddhism, reforms to become a “campaigner for human rights”. In the film, he says of the brutal Chinese: “Terrible — I dare not think about how I myself was once so intolerant “ (Stern 41/97).
Reinhold Messner, the famous mountain climber, found such an admission of guilt from Hollywood’s dream factory difficult to understand. He spoke up, confirming that he had long known about Harrer’s political opinions. This man, he said had up until the present day still not learned anything, he still believed in the national socialist alpinist ideals. In contrast, the Dalai Lama’s brother, Gyalo Thondup, defended the former SS member with the tasteless argument that what the Chinese had done to the Tibetans was worse and more cruel than what the Nazis had done to the Jews.
It is a fact that Harrer — in his own account -- first turned against the Chinese invaders at the end of the fifties, after he had already left Tibet. There is not the slightest trace of a deep catharsis as depicted in Annaud’s film to be found in the German’s books. This was purely an invention of the director to avoid losing face before a world audience.
The journalist Gerhard Lehner also pursued a second lead: on September 13, 1994 eight veterans who had visited and reported from Tibet before 1950 met with the Dalai Lama in London. In a photo taken to record the occasion a second major SS figure can be seen beside Heinrich Harrer and directly behind the Kundun, Dr. Bruno Beger. Beger was the actual “expert” who pushed forward the racial studies research by Himmler’s Ahnenerbe project . He too, like the Tibetan explorer Ernst Schäfer, was a member of Himmler’s personal staff. In 1939 he went to the Himalayas as a member of the SS Expedition. There he measured the skulls of more than 400 Tibetans in order to investigate a possible relationship between the Tibetan and Aryan ‘races’. In 1943, Beger was sent to Auschwitz where he took the measurements of 150 mainly Jewish prisoners. These were later killed and added to a collection of skeletons. In 1971 Beger appeared in a German court and was sentenced to three years imprisonment on probation for his national socialist crimes.
The racialist, who was the last survivor of the “SS Schäfer Expedition” (dying in 1998), met His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama at least five times (in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, and 1994). The meetings were all very hearty affairs. The former SS member dedicated a small brochure entitled “My Encounters with the Ocean of Knowledge” to the first three (Beger, 1986).
The Dalai Lama (worshipped by his followers as the “Ocean of Wisdom” because of his “omniscience”) claims not to have been informed about his Nazi friends’ past. One may well believe this, yet he has not distanced himself from them since their exposure. His statements about Adolf Hitler and the “final solution to the question of the Jews” also seem strange. Just like his brother, Gyalo Thondup, he sees the dictator as a more noble figure than the Chinese occupiers of Tibet: “In 1959, in Lhasa, the Chinese shot Tibetan families from aeroplanes with machine guns. Systematic destruction in the name of liberation against the tyranny of the Dalai Lama! Hu, Hu, Hu! In Hitler's case he was more honest. In concentration camps he made it clear he intended to exterminate the Jews. With the Chinese they called us their brothers! Big brother bullying little brother! Hu, Hu, Hu! It’s less honest, I think” (Daily Telegraph, August 15, 1998).
The Nazi–Tibet connection
Were there occult intentions behind the “SS Schäfer Expedition”? In the neo-fascist literature these are considered a top secret mission of Himmler’s to make contact with the “adepts of Shambhala and Agarthi”. Authors from the scene like Wilhelm Landig, Miguel Serrano, Russell McCloud, etc., let their readers believe that through these expeditions a kind of metapolitical axis between Berlin and Lhasa was constructed. Dietrich Bronder knows that “Schäfer’s SS men were permitted to enter holy Lhasa, otherwise closed to Europeans and Christians, even the magnificent Lamaist temple that contains just one huge symbol, the holiest in the Mongolian world — the swastika” .
Although in recent years comprehensive research findings about the interests of leading Nazis in occult phenomena have been published, this is currently played down by pro-Lamaist intellectuals, especially as far as an occult Nazi — Tibet connection is concerned. Ernst Schäfer and Bruno Beger, the two leaders of the undertaking (the SS Schäfer expedition), are depicted as sober natural scientists. Heinrich Himmler’ esoteric ambitions in Tibet were minimal, indeed “probably did not exist” . Hitler himself appears as a decided anti-occultist. “However, the suggestion that Hitler was interested in Eastern esotericism or even Tibet can be ruled out”. With an appeal to the historian Goodrick-Clark, the pro-Lamaist authors also assess the occult currents within the early Nazi movement (the notorious Thule Society for example) as insignificant, and completely lacking in evidence for a particular interest in Tibet. Rudolf Freiherr von Sebottendorf (1875-1945), the founder of the Thule Society, is said to have explicitly spoken out against the suggestion that the light came from the highlands of Asia.
We do not see it as our primary task here to historically prove the interweaving of the relevant SS members (Hitler, Himmler, Harrer, etc.) in an occult Nazi — Tibet connection. Things were not as cleanly rationalist and scientifically correct as the pro-Lamaist intellectuals would have it among the SS. When for example, at the presentation of a gift to the Tibetan regent in Lhasa Ernst Schäfer declaims, “Since the Swastika is also the supreme and most holy symbol for us Germans, the motto of our visit is: A meeting of the Western and Eastern Swastikas in friendship and peace …”, then an occult note in accord with the Zeitgeist of the time is present.
There are certainly also other, non-fascist, authors who create an occult correspondence between national socialism and Tibetan Buddhism via a esoteric interpretation of the “Hakenkreuz” (the Awastika), a Buddhist symbol par excellence: “The rightward hooked cross [signifies] a prayer formula in Tibet”, writes Friedrich W. Doucet, “In its left-turned form — like the national socialist swastika — it designates the orthodox Yellow Hats ... it is the Yellow Hats who supervise the spiritual rules in the Tibetan ecclesiastical state and also exercise worldly power”.
It is also certain that Himmler’s spiritual advisor, Karl Maria Wiligut (“Himmler’s Rasputin”), saw the “SS Schäfer Expedition” as an extremely occult undertaking and at Himmler’s direction attempted to exert an appropriate influence on the participants in the expedition. The SS standard bearer Wiligut/Weisthor, who was one of Himmler’s personal staff, was accredited with mediumistic abilities and he himself was convinced he was in contact with transpersonal powers. Wiligut/Weisthor was considered to be the Schutz Staffel’s (SS’s) expert on runes and designed the legendary skull ring of the SS. His megalomaniac overestimation of himself (there are authenticated statements from him to the effect that he believed he was the “secret King of Germany”) and the fact that he was deprived of the right of decision by his family led Himmler to discharge Wiligut from the SS in 1939.
The German author Rüdiger Sunner quotes the report of a member of the “SS Schäfer Expedition” over a meeting with Wiligut. During the encounter (in 1937 or 1938?), the latter was in a trance-like state and addressed his visitors in a guttural voice: “I telephoned my friends this evening … in Abyssinia and America, in Japan and Tibet ... with all who come from another world in order to construct a new empire. The occidental spirit is thoroughly corrupted, we have a major task before us. A new era will come, for creation is subject to just one grand law. One of the keys lies with the Dalai Lama [!] and in the Tibetan monasteries.” The visitor was not a little distressed, and goes on to report: “Then came the names of monasteries and their abbots, of localities in eastern Tibet which I alone knew about … Did he draw these out of my brain? Telepathy? To this day I do not know, I know only that I left the place in a hurry”. In the 80s the Chilean Miguel Serrano took up the speculation anew that the Dalai Lama plays a key role in the Nazi-Tibet connection. His “skill”, this author says of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, is “closely linked with that of Hitler’s Germany … on the basis of not yet discovered connections. A few years after Germany, Tibet also falls”/
Wiligut also believed that Lhasa would form a geomantic quadrilateral with Urga (Ulan Bator), the Egyptian pyramids, and Vienna. Miguel Seranno was later to expound similar ideas (in the seventies). Himmler too was interested in geomantic ideas and it cannot be excluded “that he hoped for more exact data about this from the Schäfer expedition”.
The myth of the “Black Sun” which was able to win a central place in the neo-fascist movement and displays similarities with the Tibetan Rahu myth from the Kalachakra Tantra, can be traced to the inspiration of Wiligut and his milieu among others. In a commentary on Wiligut’s runic writings, a pupil, Emil Rüdiger, mentions an invisible dark planet, Santur by name, which is supposed to influence human history and to be able to be microcosmically linked with the energy body of an adept. Appropriate yogic exercises (rune gymnastics) are recommended for producing “high intelligence effects” . Just how seamlessly such “rune gymnastics” can be linked to tantric exercises can be seen in the writings of Miguel Serrano, the father of “esoteric Hitlerism”.
It is thus not at all the case that there is no historical foundation for hypothesizing an occult Nazi — Tibet connection, even if it is publicly denied by one of the protagonists of the “SS Schäfer Expedition”, Bruno Beger. Nevertheless, an occult interconnection between the SS and Lamaist Tibet of the dimensions in which it is currently portrayed in a large number of neo-fascist and esoteric publications has to be described as a post facto construction. This construction could, however, we repeat, fall back on an esoteric ambience in which Heinrich Himmler, the head of the SS, and other high-ranking Nazis moved. Thus the well-known, historically proven material has at any rate been sufficient to create new and very effective myths. In the Nazi- Tibet connection , we are thus dealing with a process of myth creation and not a historical set of events. In such processes, there is a blending of historical facts, the stuff of traditional sagas, straining for effect, and imaginary, visionary, religious, fantastic, and personal elements until it all binds into a resistant pattern and anchors itself as such in a culture. It is not unusual for different mythologemes to become fused, and this is exactly, as we will show, what has happened in the case of the Nazi — Tibet connection. Here, racist Nazi myths have been fused with elements of the Tibetan Shambhala myth and with sexual magic practices from Tantric Buddhism.
In this process of myth construction it should also not be underestimated that the meetings known to have occurred between the Dalai Lama and former SS members (Schäfer, Harrer, Beger) have occult significance alone by virtue of the fact that anybody who mentally negotiates an esoteric network interprets a meeting with the Dalai Lama as an occult event.
In the meantime an enormous amount of literature about a suspected Nazi — Tibet connection has appeared, some examples of which we briefly introduce here:
In 1958 an American publisher released the book The Lightning and the Sun, by Savitri Devi (“Hitler’s Priestess”), which presents Adolf Hitler as an avatar (an incarnation) of the sun god, alongside Akhenaton and Genghis Khan. Devi does not mention a Nazi — Tibet connection, but introduces the “avatar principle” into the myth building surrounding Hitler that is seized upon by later authors so as to present the Führer as an incarnation from the kingdom of Agarthi/Shambhala (see Miguel Serrano in this regard).
In their best-seller The Dawn of Magic, Jacques Bergier and Louis Pauwells (1962) first claim that the Shambhala/Agarthi myth strongly influenced the founders of the national socialist movement.
Robert Charroux Verratene Geheimnisse [Betrayed Secrets] presumes that Lama priests had gained influence over Hitler and worked on “ a plan for exercising control over the world which was thoroughly the equal of that of the Germans “.
The anti-fascist myth researcher Friedrich Doucet Im Banne des Mythos [In the Thrall of Myth], 1979) discusses “psycho-techniques of the monks and abbots in the Lama monasteries of Tibet” with which leading national socialist figures were manipulated.
Likewise, the anthroposophically oriented author, Trevor Ravenscroft [The Spear of Destiny, 1974], assumes that Hitler cooperated with “Tibetan leaders” in Berlin.
In the 80s, two books by the Chilean Miguel Serrano appeared, El Cordon Dorado [The Golden Ribbon] and Adolf Hitler el último Avatara [Adolf Hitler: The Final Avatar]). Both texts form the basis for “esoteric Hitlerism”. One of Serrano’s central themes is the relationship between sexual magic and political power (especially national socialism). The Fourteenth Dalai Lama, whom Serrano has met several times, is woven by the author into the creation of neo-fascist myths around Hitler.
According to Jan van Helsing Geheimgesellschaften und ihre Macht [“Secret Societies and their Power”, 1993], Tibetan monks worked together with Templar Knights who were organized in the highest lodge of the “Black Sun” on the establishment of the Third Reich. The secret order had (and still has) an important base underground in the Himalayas. The ruler of the underground kingdom is said to be “Rigden Iyepo”, the king of the world, with his representative on the surface, the Dalai Lama.
In Die schwarze Sonne von Tashi Lhunpo [The Black Sun of Tashi Lhunpo 1996], McCloud reports on the survival of the national socialist Thule group in Tibet . They are the followers of a “sun oracle” there.
For Wilhelm Landig Götzen gegen Thule [Idols against Thule], n.d.), Tibet is also “the realm of the black sun! It is the meeting point of the esoteric circles of the Schutzstaffel [the SS], whose knowledge Mr. Himmler also knew about but did not share.”
In his novel [The Black Sun, 1997], Peter Moon reiterates the decisive influence of Tibetan Lamas on National Socialism and extends it with new images. He takes the side of the old Tibetan Bon religion, and accuses the Dalai Lama and Tibetan Buddhism of religious oppression.
“Why”, Martin Brauen, a pro-Lamaist expert on Tibet, asks in light of this considerable and by no means complete literature list, “does Tibet arouse the interest of the neo-fascists so much?” What makes Tibet so attractive for them? What is so fascinating about the Shambhala myth that it draws into its thrall both those who cultivate and those who combat it?” He cannot answer this question. But in order to be able invert the fact that national socialism had an occult relationship to Tibetan Buddhism into its complete opposite, he foregrounds an anti-Lamaist faction within the German right-wing. It was precisely the Nazis, Brauen says, who denounced the Lamas and the Tibetans as “Untermenschen” (subhumans).
Among the anti–Dalai Lama and anti-Tibet literature are works by S. Ipares Geheime Weltmächte [Secret World Powers, 1937], who was influenced by the orientalist Albert Grünwedel. In his book, the author talks of an occult hierarchia ordinis of the Lamaist theocracy, which invisibly influences and steers the East.
J. Strunk’s arguments Zu Juda und Rom — Tibet, [To Juda and Rome — Tibet 1937] are more far reaching; he tries to uncover a conspiracy of an international ecclesiastical elite (with members from all the world religions) with the living Buddha, the Dalai Lama from Lhasa as their visible head. “What there are of organizations and new spiritual currents running alongside and in all directions nearly always end up on the ‘roof of the world’, in a Lama temple, once one has progressed through Jewish and Christian lodges”.
In the same year (1937) Fritz Wilhelmy published the piece Asekha. Der Kreuzzug der Bettelmönche [Asekha: The Crusade of the Mendicant Monks]. In it “Tibetan Buddhism … [is] openly appointed to play a more than mysterious role in the great global hustle and bustle of suprastate pullers of strings” .
General Ludendorff and his wife likewise took to the field with great vigor against the “Asian priests” and warned that the Tibetan Lamas had emplaced themselves at the head of Jewish and Jesuit secret orders [Europa den Asiatenpriestern? (Europe of the Asian priests, 1941)].
Clearly the most prominent of the anti-Lamaist Nazi faction was the racialist Alfred Rosenberg, who in his seminal work Der Mythos des 20. Jahrhundert [The Myth of the 20th Century] made the battle between the priests and the warrior caste into the primal conflict of the history of the world. The Tibetan lamas appear here as the representatives of a decadent Asian Catholicism.
The problem with the construction of a fascist anti-Lamaism lies in the fact that apart from Alfred Rosenberg the right-wing authors cited definitely did not occupy positions of power like those of Himmler, the SS, and the Ahnenerbe project. “Hitler’s mythologist” (Rosenberg) was cut dead by Himmler and barely taken seriously by Hitler. The Ludendorff’s fell out of favor with the Führer. In contrast, the SS with their rites and their martial style increasingly became the epitome of the Nazi myth. It was the SS who explored Tibet and it was a former SS trooper (Heinrich Harrer) who schooled the Dalai Lama.
Besides this, the national socialist opponents of Lamaism mentioned, who Martin Brauen so demonstratively parades to prove that fascism was hostile towards Tibetan Buddhism, are just as fanatically fascinated by the atavistic mythology of Tibet as the pro-Lamaist fascists whom we have listed above. They do not attack the Lamaist system out of a democratic attitude or rational consideration, but the opposite, because they fear the occult world of the Lamas — namely, control by magic, the conquest of the planet by Buddhist despots, the manipulation of awareness through rituals, etc. — all concepts which can indeed be found in the tantric texts. Thus, right-wing opponents of Lamaism, just like the right-wing advocates of Lamaism, see in Tibet and its religion an occult control center.
Since the pro-Lamaist intellectuals can no longer deny that fascist authors increasingly sought out contact with Lamaist cultural images after the war, they emphatically reassure us that these were a matter of Western “illusions”, or at least Western hybrids of Lamaism which were in no sense just. With this they seem to think the problem is solved. But they leave us waiting for an examination of contents which reveals to what depth and extent ideas and practices from Lamaism have been directly incorporated by the fascist side. Yet a debate about the images, archetypes, metapolitical visions, political structures, and rituals from the Tibetan cultural sphere which the neo-Nazis refer back to is of far greater interest than the question of whether there was personal contact between lamas and Nazis. Here the actual work of cultural criticism begins, which entails:
• discovering Lamaist myths of origin behind the “Nazi fantasies”
Only then when such “myths of origin” are not to be found can the Nazi-Tibet connection be said to have been exposed as a purely Western fiction.
The following list of paradigms, concepts, theories, methods, and myths which have essentially shaped the culture of Lamaism (and still do) have become central for the neo-fascist movement:
• The combination of religious and political power
All these pillars of Tibetan Buddhist culture are likewise ingredients of the Kalachakra Tantra constantly practiced by the Dalai Lama and the Shambhala myth this evokes. For centuries they have determined the form of Tibetan monastic society, completely independent of any Western imaginings or influence. Hence the question about neo-fascism's inordinate interest in Tibet and its atavistic culture is easily answered: fascists of the most varied persuasion see their own “political theology” confirmed by the Tibetan Buddhist religious system, or discover new images and practices in it with which they can enrich and extend their ideologies.
Some (not all) of the above-mentioned Tibetan cultural elements to which the new right has helped itself were also to be found in the Europe of old, yet these were either disempowered or relativized by the Enlightenment and “modernity” — only to be reactivated in the history of fascism and national socialism. In traditional Tibet (up until 1958), in the community of Tibetans in exile, but above all in the figure of the Dalai Lama and his clergy, in the holy texts and the rituals (the tantras), these images and archetypes were able to survive without pause. Through the active presence of the lamas in the West they are now visible and tangible once more and play an ever greater role in Western popular culture. Yet it is not just in comics and kitsch films that the Dalai Lama is portrayed as a god-king, but also both the respectable and the down-market western press, a label which gains fundamental significance in the political theology of fascism and is combined there with the Führer principle.
Julius Evola: A fascist Tantric
It was not just the ideologists and theoreticians of national socialism who were closely concerned with Tibet, but also high-ranking intellectuals and scholars closely linked to Italian fascism. First of all, Giuseppe Tucci, who attempted to combine Eastern and fascist ideas with one another, must be mentioned.
In the Shambhala myth he sees a confirmation of the European tradition of the savior king, especially the myth of the grail: “At a particular time decreed by one of the cyclical laws, a new manifestation of the solar principle from above will occur in the form of a sacred ruler who gains victory over the ‘dark age’: Kalki Avatara. Symbolically Kalki will be born in Shambhala — one of the terms in the Indian/Tibetan tradition for the holiest hyperborean [Nordic] center”.
We could fill many pages illustrating the influence of Vajrayana (Tibetan Tantrism) on Evola’s work. But however, we will instead concentrate on a detailed discussion of the ideas of one of his pupils, Miguel Serrano. Serrano combines Evola’s fascist philosophy of power warriors with the national socialist thoughts on race. His works are particularly interesting for us not just because he is still alive (in 1999), but also because he has been linked with the Fourteenth Dalai Lama several times.
Goodrick Clark wrote: ”Books by Serrano are now circulating among neo-pagans, Satanists, skinheads, and Nazi metal music fans in the United States, Scandinavia, and Western Europe”.
"Miguel Serrano”, writes his interviewer, Isidro Palacios, “was the only [!] western foreigner who traveled to meet the Dalai Lama as the monk-emperor of the Tibetan Buddhists fled from the holy land of Tibet to the south because of the Chinese invasion. Our conversation partner [Serrano] traveled from India into the Himalayas where his meeting with the Dalai Lama took place, and since then a close friendship has existed between him and the now Nobel prize winner” . Who is this “close friend” of the Kundun then?
Miguel Serrano was born in Santiago, Chile in 1917. Between 1947 and 1948 he visited Antarctica for the first time, to which he later undertook many journeys. One of the massifs which he explored on an expedition there bears his name today. Between 1939 and 1945 he published the esoteric journal, La Nueva Edad [The New Age]. He was active as a diplomat for Chile in several countries, including India, Yugoslavia, Romania, Bulgaria, and Austria. He also worked as an ambassador at the International Atomic Energy Commission in Vienna and at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). Largely unnoticed by the public, Serrano has been in friendly contact with numerous prominent national socialist and fascist figures since the seventies: with Léon Degrelle, Otto Skorzeny, Hans-Ulrich Rudel, Hanna Reitsch, Julius Evola, Herman Wirth, Savitri Devi, and the French Waffen SS man and author Saint Loup. The Chilean returned to his country of birth and lives some kilometers from Santiago (as of 1999).
He published numerous books with an occult/poetic content. Even his work best known in the West, in which he recounts his encounters with the German poet Hermann Hesse and the depth psychologist C. G. Jung, displays a great deal of occultist speculation when one reads it attentively. Serrano titled his book The Hermetic Circle: Conversations, Correspondence, and Memories of Hermann Hesse and C. G. Jung. This title alone should signal that the author had formed an esoteric brotherhood with Jung and Hesse, a sort of triumvirate of magicians who had gained admittance to the archetypal storehouses of the human subconscious and are unique in the twentieth century. Jung was sympathetic towards the Chilean who had courted him. He wrote an effusive foreword to Serrano’s tale, The Visit of the Queen of Saba: “This book is unusual. It is a dream amidst other dreams, one could say, and completely different to the spontaneous creations of the unconscious with which I am familiar” . Serrano was also a great admirer of the American poet, Ezra Pound, who sympathized with the Italian fascists. Together with Pound’s widow (Olga Rudge) and Prince Ivanici, Serrano had a commemorative stone erected in Italy.
His occult studies took him to all parts of the world. He saw himself as a modern Percival (Parsifal) and Minnesinger, who went in search of the Grail under the protection of his diplomatic passport. “The life of an ambassador is a farce and a folly”, he said in an interview in the journal Cedade, “My post allows me to meet with people of value like the Dalai Lama, Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Hanna Reitsch (Hitler’s famous female war pilot) and others” . Switzerland, Westphalia, the mountains of Salzburg, the Pyrenées, his travels in search of the Grail led him through all these “geomantically” significant sites, but likewise to the Himalayas, Patagonia, and Antarctica.
The Chilean was rightly considered the occult eminence of modern, international fascism. Meanwhile, his phantasmagoric writings have also developed a fanatic following in the German neo-nazi scene: It is the Chilean author’s obsessive intention to convince his readers that Adolf Hitler was an avatar (a divine incarnation) or a tulku, and ever will be, since he lives on in another body in another sphere, that of the kingdom of Shambhala. According to Serrano, the Führer will reappear as the doomsday ruler and fight a terrible battle, and that in the next few years. How did this bizarre fantasy arise?
Shortly after the Second World War a mysterious “master” from the beyond is supposed to have appeared to the Chilean and said to him: “Hitler is a initiate, he can communicate with those dwelling on the astral plane. I do not know who his spiritual leaders are, but I have decided to help him. Hitler is a being with an iron, unshakable will which he inevitably put into effect. He never yielded. I was in contact with him".
After this appearance of his spiritual guru, Serrano was absolutely convinced that he had been entrusted with the mission of the century: the worldwide dissemination of Hitlerismo Esoterico (of “esoteric Hitlerism”). Whilst still performing his international duties as a Chilean Ambassador he held himself back, although he carried the idea in his heart from the nineteen fifties on. During this period he published books of a poetic/esoteric content with several respectable western publishers which, although they without exception include tantric topics (especially the “female sacrifice”), studiously avoid mentioning the name of Adolf Hitler. Only in 1978 did the Chilean first dare to go public with an open profession of belief in the German Nazi dictator, and published El Cordón Dorado — Hitlerismo Esoterico [The Golden Ribbon — Esoteric Hitlerism]. In the mid-eighties the almost 650-page, large-format book, Adolf Hitler, el Ùltimo Avatâra [Adolf Hitler, the Last Avatar], followed. Serrano summarizes the results of his extensive occult research into this topic with the concise statement that, “esoteric Hitlerism is tantric”.
Shambhala: The center of “esoteric Hitlerism”
Shambhala and Agarthi are thus the two occult regions (or cities) from which the national socialist dictator, Adolf Hitler, was sent to our planet. According to Serrano the two locations lie in a magic realm beneath the surface of the Earth. “Thus the submerged Agarthi and Shambhala are to be found there, which the Tibetans and Mongolians speak of as the seat of the king of the world, and also the symbolic orient of the [Knights] Templar and the true Rosicrucians. Thus the unknown leaders of these two orders, as well the organization of esoteric Hitlerism [the SS], betook themselves there. And from there Hitler clearly received instructions”.
Following the Second World War the rumor (which Serrano seizes upon thankfully) arose in occult circles that Hitler had settled a brotherhood of Tibetan lamas in Berlin, who stood in direct contact with the kingdom of Shambhala. After the Russians entered the city the members of the order committed suicide .
But Hitler — Serrano says -- did not suicide; rather he was able to return to his subterranean home of Shambhala. “Hitler lives. He did not die in Berlin. I have seen him under the earth. ... I kept this secret for many years; then it was dangerous to reveal it, and it was even more difficult to write about it”, the mysterious master we have already mentioned explained to his pupil, Serrano. The “Führer”, however, did not flee to Tibet as is assumed in other occult speculations. Serrano doubts such assumptions, since on the basis of his researches he reached the conclusion that the mythic realm of Shambhala was relocated from the Himalayas to the South Pole (Antarctica) following the war and that today the entrance to the underground imperium may be found there. Hitler is thus said to have traveled to Antarctica.
In the near future, the “Führer” will ascend to earth from the subterranean Shambhala (now at the South Pole) for a second time, with a powerful army of UFOs in fact. (At another point Serrano reports that Hitler will lead his army on a white horse, like the Rudra Chakrin, the wrathful wheel turner from Shambhala.) The “last avatar” (Hitler) will plunge the planet into a terrible apocalyptic war between the forces of light (the hyperborean Aryan race) and the powers of darkness (the Jewish race). The Jews, who currently rule the world, will be exterminated and the Nazis will found the Edidad Dorada (the “golden age”) and the “Fourth Reich”.
Serrano took his “fantasies” literally. To seek his spiritual leader (or the tulku Hitler), the Chilean diplomat (in India at the time) set off and began exploring in the Himalayas and in Antarctica. “In the book The Serpent of Paradise, I describe my search for the ashram of the Siddha in the Himalayas, which is likewise to be found beneath the earth in the Kailash mountains, in a very remote area where my master’s residence also is” . He was convince that he would find an entrance to Shambhala or Agarthi in the Kailash. He also tried to reach Lake Yamdrok, because he suspected there was an entrance gateway to the underground Shambhala there as well. But the Chinese turned him back at the border.
But the time was not ripe, Serrano was unable to discover the entrance to Shambhala. In Kalimpong, “before the gates of Tibet” he encountered a “man” who assured the Chilean that a mysterious “order” exerts an influence over both the affairs of the distant past and the most recent events of world history. Obviously this man was the guru who — as he recounts in his key book EL/ELLA — initiated Serrano into the rites of sexual magic, and the order was a tantric secret society. Its members, the “man” said, “live in two cities in the Himalayas, Agarthi and Shambhala. To get there one has to trace this (tantric) way back to the origin of time” .
The pupil (Serrano) — we read in EL/ELLA — is prepared to go this way and is initiated into the tantras and the “laws of androgyny” by the master: “This knowledge has been passed on to us by the serpent [kundalini] that survived on the ocean floor as the world of the god-men was destroyed, in which the woman was not outside but rather inside and where man and woman were one. .... Until you are one with the woman ... you will be no priest king ... The stallion must become a mare, the man a woman ...” the guru continued his teaching.
This is never, the pupil learns, possible through chastity and asceticism. Rather, the man must encounter the woman in the “magic love” in order to divert her feminine energies. As we know, this requires absolute control over the sexual act and above all the retention of the seed: “If the stallion expels the seed, he becomes impoverished by this. ... For as long as the seed flows outwards like a river, the play of the deceptive appearances will continue”. In another text it says: “the magic love that is taught in ... Shambhala. ... In it the seed may not be issued outwardly and be lost in the woman, rather it must flow inwardly into the body of its owner in order to impregnate him with the androgyne, ... as one in the likewise symbolic language of alchemy”. If the man does not expel his sperm he can absorb the woman’s gynergies completely. “If the woman does not receive”, Serrano says, “she gives! Through her skin she exudes substances, a concentrated energy, which satiates you and penetrates into your blood and heart” .
But it can happen that the tantric experiment fails. If the sadhaka (the pupil) loses his seed during the magic sexual act then he is destroyed by the aggressive femininity: “The spider devours the male who fertilizes her, the bees murder the drones, the fearsome mother wears the organ of generation tied around her neck. Everything female devours, every mare, mother, goddess, or woman. In one way or another the man is consumed”.
It is thus a matter of life and death. Ultimately, according to Serrano the “killing” of the external woman (the karma mudra) is therefore necessary, so that the inner woman (the maha mudra) can be formed. The author does not shrink from discussing the “tantric female sacrifice” directly: “Only those who are able to love the woman so much [!] that they externally kill her [!] in order to make possible her inner rebirth will find the immortal city of Agarthi (or Shambhala)”. For an uninformed reader hidden, but obvious to one who knows the logic of Tantrism, a tantric female murder is described in both of his initiatory writings, EL/ELLA [HE/SHE] and NOS [WE].
In a love scene from EL/ELLA a young woman expires in Serrano’s arms in order to then re-emerge within him as an inner maha mudra. He bends over her, strokes her hair and kisses her bloody lips: “They tasted like bitter honey, and he swallowed a little of her blood” Then he suddenly sees the stigmata: “Strangely, it [the blood] was only on her feet and the palms of her hands as if she had been crucified. 'Here!', she said. She indicated her side, at breast level. A white line seemed to run through it, like a spear wound”. The references to the sacrifice of Christ are obvious, indeed they seem quite blatant. “When I die,” the woman then says, “you will bear me within you; I will be you, live in you ... You have drunk my blood, and we are now two siblings. My character is already being transferred into your blood ... If god will, I shall love you even more when I am dead. ... I have to die that you may live”. With this she fulfills the wise saying of Serrano’s master: “The decay of the one [the woman] is the purification of the other [the man]". “The absolute woman”, he says at another point, “can sleep or she can die, which is the same thing”.
Written in a fantasy manner, the book NOS — Book of the Resurrection also depicts a tantric female sacrifice. The heroine of this “hermetic biography” is called Allouine, the main hero is admittedly Serrano. Additionally, various “tantric” masters crop up. Among them are, unmistakably, C.G. Jung, Hermann Hesse, and the American poet Ezra Pound. The contents of the book depict the voluntary self-sacrifice of Allouine, her interiorization as a maha mudra by the author (Serrano), and the latter’s achievement of immortality through the absorption of gynergy. “The woman dies. She is dead. She must die. ... She is the warrior’s [the yogi’s] companion, existing only in his mind, in his spirit”, Serrano instructs us once more. “She [the woman] becomes interiorized in you through her death, she inspires you”, one of his masters explains to him and in another passage continues: “The secret path of yoga along which you are traveling is only for the warrior, for the initiated hero. It is not the path for the woman; because a woman has no chakras, no kundalini to awaken. ... A woman is the Kundalini. A woman has no soul. She is the soul. A woman has no eternity. She is eternity.
Serrano stages a tantric séance with Allouine, in which they both consume the five forbidden foods. Then he drinks “the liquor of orgasm ... the heavenly Soma, an spirit of secret wine ... which is now only to be found in the river of your blood”. We know that he is talking about the sukra, the mixture of male and female seed, of menstrual blood and sperm. This magic potion grants the Tantric immortality. In NOS too the author longs for the blood of his lover like a vampire and goes into raptures if he detects it on his lips. After he has washed the dying Allouine, he kisses her and drinks of her blood.
Yet Allouine patiently and will-lessly accepts her sacrifice: “My desire for you (i.e., for Serrano) is reaching its peak. The fire of sacrifice has already been lit in my vulva and beats there like a heart. ... My will no longer exists”. “The authentic, absolute woman sacrifices herself voluntarily,” we read in NOS, “immolating herself in order to give her eternity to her lover. ... The beloved is now the hidden beloved, she who has died and buried herself in your bones and your veins. The female Sophia, guru of the soul, she who courses through the blood, the female philosopher, Sophia, wisdom, the dove, gnosis”. Dying, his “wisdom consort” says to him, “I shall but love thee better after death. I give you my eternity. … My beloved, you will be my coffin of perfumed, precious wood!”.
After he has internalized Allouine within himself, the Tantric Serrano can now overcome his EGO, he can now talk of NOS (WE), since his lover (maha mudra) will dwell in him for ever. Through this love, deadly for the woman, the man gains eternal life. In this context, Serrano plays upon the word AMOR, which does not just mean love, but also A-MOR, i.e., beyond death.
Eternally united with Allouine’s gynergy following her physical death, Serrano buries her corpse and places a stone at her grave into which he has chiseled a leftward hooked cross, the supreme symbol of “esoteric Hitlerism”.
The SS as a tantric warrior order from Shambhala
For Serrano the tantric initiation is the central rite of a “hyperborean” (Nordic) warrior caste. Shambhala counts as the supreme mystery site for the initiation of the “priest-warriors”. “In Shambhala”, the author says, “ the use of the force through which the mutation of the earth and the people can be carried out is taught, and the latter [the people] are introduced into the martial initiation, which makes this possible. ... Those who follow this initiatory stream have struggled to found a new/old order here on the present-day earth which has its roots in the transcendent origins, with the goal of reawakening the golden age, and they will fight on to the end”.
This order is the secret brotherhood of the Shambhala officers, who have for centuries been incarnated in our world — for instance as knights of the holy grail or as Rosicrucians or finally as the occult elite of the SS, Hitler’s notorious Schutz-Staffel. “Once a year”, we learn, “the inner circle of the SS people met with their supreme leaders for a few days of retreat, the solitude, and meditation. A kind of western yoga was practiced here, but nothing is known about it”.
According to Serrano the SS were divided into two sections, an inner esoteric one and an outer one. The “exoteric SS” were selected to “be able to deal with the most difficult tasks and adventures in the external world”. “Nothing of the esoteric of the black order, its practices and teachings, its invisible connections and its occult doctrines was known” to them. The “inner circle” of the SS consisted of “sun people, supermen, god-men, the total human, the human magician” (Serrano, n.d., p. 96). The esoteric SS were siddhas (magicians) from the underground kingdom of Shambhala, or at least their messengers In German, SS are the initials of the “Black Sun” (“schwarze Sonne”), and Serrano did also call the members of the order “the men of the Black Sun”. We are reminded that the planet of darkness, Rahu, which darkens the sun and moon, is also referred to in the Kalachakra Tantra as the black sun.
The author is convinced, of course, that sexual magic rites were practiced in the SS (the “new aristocracy of the Aryan race”). Like Julius Evola before him, the Chilean makes constant references in his writings to how sexuality may be converted into high-quality aggressive military energy and political power through tantric practices: “Come and take me like a warrior!”, a lover (his karma mudra) says to him at one stage in his key novels, “I give you my heart for you to devour. Let us drink our blood”. In EL/ELLA the author recommends to heroes initiated into the tantras that “the warrior should give death the face of his lover; the fiery femininity of death will be thus evoked”. For Serrano, tantric practices and the cult life of a fascist/esoteric warrior caste are one.
Additionally, the sexual magic of the SS was connected with racial experiments. These aimed at a mutation of the human race, or better, a regaining of the formerly high-standing Aryan god-men who had in the dim and distant past tarnished themselves through “ordinary” sexual intercourse with human women and produced a lesser race. According to Serrano, such experiments were conducted in the Wewelsburg, the occult center of the SS. “Laboratories of leftward magic” for the re-creation of the original, pure Aryan race were to be found there. But these were nothing more than the above-ground branches of corresponding establishments in subterranean Shambhala. “ In Shambhala they attempted to produce a mutation of their kind which would allow them to return to that which they were before their interbreeding with the sons of man...” — when they still had a white, almost transparent body and blonde hair.
As Tantrics, the SS were “beyond good and evil” and for this reason their “terrible deeds” were justified by Serrano, plus that they took place at higher cosmic command. The “final solution to the question of the gypsies” (many gypsies perished in the concentration camps), for example, is said to have come directly “from Tibet to Hitler, certainly from Shambhala”. The gypsies used to live in Shambhala and had then been driven out of there. “The reasons for this”, says Serrano, “were known in the Tibet of the Dalai Lama”.
Just like the Knights Templar, the inner occult core of the SS were incarnations of the guardians of the holy grail, and “the grail of the siddhas [the magicians], of the solar and martial initiations” is to be found in Shambhala. The miracles which radiated from the grail were evident in the achievements of the black order in the course of the Second World War: “If one examines the achievements of the followers of Hitler in all areas of creation within a period of just six years, one cannot avoid admiring this miracle and making a comparison with the Templar order. And one comes to believe that the SS have likewise found the grail and even deciphered it” . Even the monumental architecture of the Third Reich is supposed to have been prepared on the building sites of Shambhala. The Hyperboreans (the gods of the north), we may read, “emigrated to two secret cities in the Himalayas, Agarthi and Shambhala. ... In Shambhala they practiced the magic of the giants which made the monumental buildings possible”.
In the Second World War the forces of light and the “sun race” (Hitler and the SS) stood opposed to the forces of darkness and the “moon race” (the Allies and the Jews). It was no ordinary war, but rather a global battle between the gods (the Nazis, the light Aryan race) and demons (the Jews, the dark Semitic race), between Odin, the highest god of the Germanic peoples, and Jehovah, the highest god of the Jews. The Nordic (hyperborean) heroes fought the “lord of darkness”, the “satanic demiurge”. At heart, Serrano says, the patriarchal and matriarchal powers were at war.
Admittedly Hitler outwardly lost the war, but through his sacrifice and his example he saved the ideals of the warrior caste from Shambhala. He shall return at the head of his “wild army” to finally liberate the white race from the lord of darkness (Jehovah). It will then come to a terrible final battle. “These are the dimensions of Hitler, the envoy of the hyperborean [Nordic] siddhas, the tulku, the Bodhisattva, the Chakravartin, the Führer of the Aryans, so that the demiurge Jehovah has to mobilize all his earthly and extraterrestrial legions”.
One may well dismiss Serrano’s visions as the product of an overactive imagination, but it cannot be denied that modern fascism has found a home and a predecessor in the Shambhala myth and in Tantrism. Its mythological conceptions and visions of power can without difficulty be brought into harmony with the practice and political ideology of the Kalachakra Tantra for all fundamental issues. The occult right wing’s move toward Tibetan Buddhism is thus in no way to be understood as the exploitation of the dharma for ignoble purposes, since there is a profound inner relatedness between these two ways of looking at the world.
The Fourteenth Dalai Lama and Serrano
Naturally, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama would simply dismiss any link between the Shambhala myth and Kalachakra Tantra and the “esoteric Hitlerism” of Serrano, regardless of how closely matched even the conceptual principles of the two systems may be. Nonetheless, it is of great interest to our culturally critical study that the Kundun met with the racist Chilean several times (in at least 1959, 1984, and 1992). When His Holiness visited Chile in the year 1992, he was greeted at the airport by, among others, the leader of the National Socialist Party of Chile — Miguel Serrano by name. The principal ideologue of Esoteric Hitlerism told the reporters present that he and the hierarch from Tibet had been good “friends” since his time in India (Grunfeld, 1996, p. 302). Serrano was also a friend of the German living in India whom we have so often cited, Lama Govinda, in whose meditation tower with a view of the Himalayan mountains he was able to immerse himself.
The first encounter with the Kundun took place in 1959. In his own account, the founder of “esoteric Hitlerism” was the sole foreigner to greet the Dalai Lama as he crossed the Indian border after his flight from Tibet. “Shortly before the taking of Tibet by Mao’s troops”, he reports in his own words, “the Dalai Lama succeeded in fleeing to India. I journeyed into the Himalayas to wait for him there. I donned Tibetan clothes which the Maharaja of Sikkim had given me so as to attempt to get to Tibet from there. I made it to the Tibetan border, where — incidentally — I made the acquaintance of one of Roerich’s sons who also gave me a report of the hidden city lying in the mountains (Shambhala). The at that time still very young Dalai Lama later, when everything was over, gave me a small Tibetan dog, as a sign of his gratitude”.
It is at any rate interesting that the Kundun, who was introduced to western culture by a member of the SS (Heinrich Harrer), meets as the first (!) Westerner after his crossing of the Indian border the fascist Miguel Serrano, who sees a mythic command from the kingdom Shambhala at the esoteric core of the SS. Serrano says of himself: “I was employed as a tool and continue to be used” (Cedade, 1986). We may recall that upon crossing the border, the Dalai Lama gave vent to the cry of “Victory to the gods!”. The gods that Serrano represented and as whose tool he served were Wotan, Odin, and, in his own words, Adolf Hitler.
As far as the “enchanting” Tibetan temple bitch of “honey yellow color” which was given him by the Kundun is concerned, this creature had a most special significance for the Chilean. The lamas, the author says, referred to the petite race as the “lion of the back door of the Temple”. Serrano’s “back door lion” was called Dolma, “the name of a Tibetan goddess; in truth the shakti”. Dolma is the Tibetan name for the goddess Tara. As abstruse as it may sound, after some time the Chilean recognized in the Dolma given him by the Kundun the reincarnation of a woman whom he once loved as a “mystic partner” and who (in accordance with the laws of the “tantric female sacrifice”) had had to die. As Dolma the bitch one day passed away in his arms — Serrano had flown from Spain to Vienna just to accompany her into eternity — he recalled an event of mythological dimensions from the 16th century. As if he were in a trance he suddenly felt that it was not the Tibetan Dolma but rather the dying sister of the last Aztec emperor Montezuma, Papán by name, whom he held in his arms. Papán — Serrano claimed — originally a high priestess from the north ("Hyperborea”), had in Mexico prophesied- according to legend — the return of the white gods to America. In her final hour, Dolma (the bitch) radiated out the energy of the Aztec princess who had to suffer a ritual sacrificial death.
Thanks to this vision Serrano could once more experience the fascination which habitually flooded through him at the embrace of dying women, even if one of them had this time been incarnated in a bitch. In NOS, a dying dog (the fate of Dolma probably lies behind this) spoke to him like a tantric lover with a human voice: “You don't need me outside anymore. I will howl inside you, like my brother the wolf”.
Such central “hermetic” experiences naturally tied the Chilean to the Kundun and his tantric world view profoundly and so it is also not surprising that Serrano linked “esoteric Hitlerism” and the fate of Germany to the Dalai Lama directly: His “skill”, the author says of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, is “closely linked to that of Hitler’s Germany ... on account of yet undiscovered connections. A few years after Germany, Tibet also fell”.
The Chilean did not yet know about the SS past of Heinrich Harrer, the Kundun’s “best friend” and teacher, since this first became known in 1997 in connection with the film Seven Years in Tibet. But we can be certain that this fact would have been cited by him as further evidence to justify an occult connection between Shambhala and the SS, between the Dalai Lama and Adolf Hitler, particularly as the Chilean indicates at many points in his writings that the SS sent “secret missions” to Tibet in order to search for traces of the Aryan race there.
Serrano allows himself to be celebrated as the “Führer” of the National Socialist Party of Chile. His calendar commences with the year of Adolf Hitler’s birth in 1889. He describes “esoteric Hitlerism” as the “new religion of the young heroes and future warriors and priests, the true myth of the coming century”. In 1989, on the 100th anniversary of Hitler’s birth (the year 100 for Serrano) a commemorative celebration was staged at which the Chilean and representatives of “esoteric Hitlerism” from various countries (Chile, Spain, Italy, Germany) spoke: “On the peak of a mountain in the Andes ranges which dominates Santiago,” the Chilean newspaper, La Epoca, writes, “and to the sounds of the Ride of the Valkyrie from Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung), some 100 Chilean followers and foreigners commemorated Adolf Hitler in yesterday’s evening twilight and promised that in the new Hitlerist age the continuing triumph of his ideas would proceed from Chile. ... Hitler, Serrano opined, would be resurrected from in the Andes ('Andes' means 'perfected, total human) and he would do like the Caleuche [a mystic hero of Chile, whose name means 'the man who returns’) and introduce the age of Hitler” (Epoca, April 21, 1989). This event should not be underestimated on the basis of the small number of participants. For Serrano it had a ritual/symbolic significance and was reported in detail in the German neo-Nazi scene, for example.
In fascist circles worldwide, Serrano is a “hot tip” and his bizarre visions do in fact exercise a fascinating attraction on many young people. His Nazi books are openly offered for sale in all South American countries. The German translation of Cordón Dorado Hitlerismo Esoterico is available as a hardback [Das goldene Band — esoterischer Hitlerismus] Highly sought after copies of the other works (about Hitlerism) in German translation and individual propaganda essays are in circulation and passed from hand to hand. “Serrano’s mystical neo-Nazism … [has] a distinct appeal to the younger generation”, writes the historian Goodrick Clark, “Here Nazism becomes a pop mythology, severed from the historic context of the Third Reich. The Gnostic Cathars, Rosicrucian mysteries, Hindu Avatars, and extraterrestrial gods add a sensational and occult appeal to powerful myths of elitism, planetary destiny, and the cosmic conspiracy of the Jews that culminate in a global racist ideology of white supremacism. … Books by Serrano … are now circulating among neo-pagans, Satanists, skinheads, and Nazi metal music fans in the United States, Scandinavia, and Western Europe”. The Dalai Lama has never distanced himself from Serrano. Instead of decisively opposing fascism in any country, he recently called for the former Chilean State President and fascist, Augusto Pinochet, to be spared a trial.
The fools scorn Me when I take on human form;
--Bhagavad Gita, IX, verse ii
All the candidates -- I should say "the novices" -- of the SS, were not trained and educated in the same Ordensburg. And all those of the same Ordensburg did not receive -- especially at the higher levels -- the same teaching. That depended on the tasks for which they were judged apt, even within the élite. Because it comprised several organizations, from the most visible, the Waffen [Armed] SS -- the most famous also, because of the superhuman heroism of which it gave proof so many times during the Second World War -- up to the most secret, the Ahnenerbe (Ancestral Heritage), founded in 1935, and all the more difficult to know since many documents which referred to it (also secret, which goes without saying) were destroyed, "before the arrival of the Allies in Germany," and which "the members of this organization who survived the collapse of Third Reich ... concealed with a strange resolution" (André Brissaud, Hitler and the Black Order).
It is at least logical to think that it was probably the Ahnenerbe which, in "the Black Order" of Adolf Hitler, was the agent of the Tradition -- and more specifically, certain sections of the Ahnenerbe, because it comprised many of them, including "fifty-two scientific [sections]" (Brissaud), i.e., dealing with objective research, though not necessarily in the spirit and employing the methods used in the applied sciences. According to the declarations of Wolfram Sievers before the tribunal of the victors in Nuremberg, to whom one owes this detail, the same Institute "carried out or tried to carry out more than one hundred missions of research of great extent" (Brissaud). The nature of some of this research reveals a very clear interest in esoteric questions. Thus they studied the symbolism of the harp in Ireland; also, the question of the survival of the true Rosicrucian brotherhood -- in other words, of initiatory groups still having the complete tradition of the Templars (of which the first Rosicrucian brotherhood would have received the heritage).
Thus they reconsidered the Bible and the Kabbalah, while trying to draw the hidden meaning from them -- wondering, in particular what role the symbolism of numbers plays in one and the other. Thus they further studied the physical and mental structure of human specimens of various races -- that of the Nordic with the very special care that one can guess -- in order to prove the value of the concept of heredity and race, so fundamental in Hitlerism. Thus they devoted systematic and sustained efforts to all research aimed at revealing to the Germans the glory of their own Antiquity, historic or prehistoric -- and of their Middle Ages -- and to highlight the importance of the corresponding sites.
Without denying that there is, in Christianity as in Judaism itself, and all the associated religions or philosophies close to or even far from the Tradition, a share of esoteric truth, they put the emphasis on the traditional form specific to the Germanic people. The traces of this one are found in the symbols, engraved on rock, of most remote prehistory, and, after the bloody eradication of the worship of Wotan by Charlemagne and his immediate successors, in certain rites practiced in the Middle Ages in the Chivalric Orders or the Holy Vehm. It would be interesting to know if the latter, which did not cease to exist as a secret organization, has, or had at a given time, some relationship with the Thule Society.
And the examples show sufficiently that it was not only about "culture," but about secret knowledge, or, about the national culture of the Germans in general, and, for the initiates of Order of the SS and in particular of Ahnenerbe, of secret knowledge of the great cosmic truths, apprehended through traditional symbolism such as the Germanic people knew it, and such as a quiet minority preserved it.
For -- and it is here a point to be noted -- in spite of the very strong "pagan" current that underlies Hitlerism, and which appears especially in the unreserved rejection of any anthropocentrism, such as the whole personal God, it was never a question of rejecting or even under appreciating anything which in the German -- and European -- ancestral heritage gives honor to the Aryan genius.
The Führer had, says André Brissaud, "the feeling" -- I myself would say the certainty -- that "all that which in recent Western history had taken the form of a religion, and the Christian religion particularly ... pertains to the 'too human'," and therefore did not have a great deal to do with really transcendent values, and, moreover, "offers a general climate or an inner order scarcely compatible with its own provisions and its vocation, set alongside the truths and the dogmas of the faith suggested to the ordinary man" (Brissaud). However, it is the whole of Western civilization which is at the same time "recent" and "Christian." It never should be forgotten.
That did not, however, prevent Adolf Hitler, who was impartial, as is necessary for any sage (and even more so for any human expression of the Divine), from admiring Charlemagne -- the Sachsenschlächter or "exterminator of the Saxons," as he was called by Alfred Rosenberg, Johannes von Leers, Heinrich Himmler, and a good number of other high-ranking dignitaries, thinkers, and men of action of the Third Reich. He saw in him a conqueror with an immense will to power, and above all the first unifier of the Germans; he who, alone in his time, had had the idea of the Reich, even if it had been useful to impose on it the artificial unity of "faith," and if this "faith" was the Christian faith, i.e. a foreign faith. One remembers that Adolf Hitler insisted on the corrosive action of Christianity on the Greco-Roman world, and that he described it as "pre-Bolshevism." But it does not matter what this faith was (and still is), if it were the cement of a conquering Germanic Empire and, later, the occasion for all the flowering of art that one knows. Insofar as this art is beautiful, it presupposes, in any event, a certain knowledge of that which is eternal. The Führer thus accepted with respect, as a German heirloom, a replica of the sword of the Emperor of West.
He also admired the great Hohenstaufen Emperors -- especially Frederic Barbarossa, he-who-must-return -- and who had returned, in him (for only a little while, alas!); and Frederic II, Stupor Mundi [Wonder of the World], in whom so many of his contemporaries believed they saw the Antichrist -- as men nowadays, deceived by propaganda, were to see in him, the Founder of Third Reich, the incarnation of Evil. He admired Frederic II of Prussia, Bismarck, all those in whom the conquering force of the German people had been expressed, of whose cultural -- and much more than cultural -- mission he did not have the slightest doubt.
And Heinrich Himmler himself, while paying a brilliant homage to the Saxon warriors, martyrs of the ancient national faith in Verden, in the year 782 of the foreign God, professed a veritable adoration of the Emperor Henry I and exalted the Knights of the Teutonic Order -- certainly not because the latter had, with great reinforcement of brutality, forced the Slavs (and finally the Prussians*) to accept Christianity, but because they had, by the sword, "prepared the way for the German plow": made possible the German colonization of vast territories in the east.
[*The Prussians were still "pagans," that is to say, faithful to their German gods, in the fourteenth century.]
What there was, moreover, of the eternal in the warlike religion of Wotan and Thor -- and, before that in the immemorial Nordic religion of the Sky, the Earth, and "Son" of the one and the other, which Dr. Hermann Wirth studied -- was to survive in Christian esotericism, and in esotericism as such. This has, parallel to the teaching of the Churches, continued throughout history to have its initiates, less and less numerous, undoubtedly, but always present, and sometimes very active. (One counts among them such immortal creators as the great Dürer and, later, Göthe, Wagner, and to a certain extent, Nietzsche.) And it is known that Frederic II, "the Great," King of Prussia -- the hero par excellence of the Führer -- was Grand Master of the Old Prussian Lodges).
The deep significance of the ancient Irminsul, Axis of the world, is not, at the bottom, different from that of the Cross, detached of all Christian mythology, i.e., of the story of the execution of Jesus considered as a fact in time. The point of the venerable Germanic symbol indeed aims at the Pole star, which appears as the "One" or supreme Principle; and its curved branches are supposed to support the circle of the Zodiac, symbol of the Cycle of manifestation, being driven around its motionless center. There are in certain very old churches of Germany today "crucifixions" in which the cross itself has the curved branches of the "pagan" Irminsul -- the ensemble suggesting the fusion of the two religions in their most elevated and most universal symbolism. In addition -- according to Professor von Moth, of Detmold -- the Fleur de Lys, connected, as everyone knows, with the idea of royal or imperial power, is, in its form, a somewhat stylized Irminsul, or "Pillar of All," having like it a polar and axial significance. Any legitimate power comes indeed from On-high. And the Swastika, also "essentially the sign of the Pole" thus of the "rotational movement which is achieved around a center of an immutable axis" and -- the movement representing life -- of "the vivifying role of the Principle in relation to the cosmic order" is connected thereby to the Irminsul and the cross (René Guénon, Fundamental Symbols of Sacred Science).
What, therefore, was important, what was exalted, was all that had contributed, or could contribute, to reinforce the Germanic will to power -- condition of the universal "rectification," which only regenerated Germany could begin. It was, in addition, to keep alive the deposit of traditional truth, i.e., of more than human -- cosmic -- truth transmitted down through the ages. The expression of this heritage, the form in which it was presented, could certainly vary from one time to another thanks to the political fluctuations of the visible world, but at bottom remained one, and is explicated as well in the supreme beauty of the old Scandinavian sagas as in the music, eminently Christian in inspiration, of Johann-Sebastian Bach, and, this goes without saying, in the "complete artwork" [Gesamtkunstwerk] (musical and literary), also initiatory, of Richard Wagner.
This deposit, more invaluable than anything, came from mysterious Hyperborea, original homeland of the "transparent men," sons of the "Intelligences of Beyond"; of the Hyperborea whose center -- the "capital" -- was Thule.
It is undoubtedly unnecessary to point out that the "transparency" in question here is not anything material and consequently visible. It seems to be a state of being more subtle than that which we know, more open to direct contact with the intangible and even the formless. In other words, the Hyperboreans, guardians of the primordial Tradition, would have been capable of intellectual intuition to a degree that we cannot conceive.
Who were they? And -- if they really existed -- where did their territory extend? The more or less evocative allusions made by the ancients -- by Seneca in his Medea; by Pliny the Elder, Virgil, Diodorus of Sicily, Herodotus, Homer (in the Odyssey) and the author or the authors of Genesis, and especially the enigmatic Book of Enoch -- are rather vague, though all refer to the "Far North." And the evocation of the extreme "whiteness" of the Hyperboreans, of the inexpressible beauty of their wives and the "extraordinary gifts of perspicacity" of some of them (Brissaud), would make one think of an Aryan race immensely higher than the average Nordic of today, which is not astonishing since they belong to a past which is lost in the mists of time. But there is more: the scholar Bal Gangadhar Tilak,* better known under the name of Lokomanya Tilak, a learned and wise Hindu, has, in his work The Arctic Home in the Vedas, very clearly connected the oldest tradition of India to an area located in the high latitudes, an area of the long polar night and Midnight Sun and ... the aurora borealis; an area where the stars do not rise nor set, but move, or seem to move, circularly along the horizon.
[*Born on 3 July 1856, died 1 August 1920. He was a Brahman of Maharashtra, of the sub-caste of Chitpavan.]
The Rig-Veda, which he studied in particular and from which he draws the majority of the quotations in support of his thesis, would have been, as well as the whole of the Vedas -- or knowledge "seen," i.e., direct -- revealed to these "Aryas," i.e., "Lords" of the extreme North, and preciously preserved by them during the migrations which have, over centuries, brought them little by little into India.
Tilak places the abandonment of the Arctic fatherland at the time when it lost its moderate climate and its green vegetation to become "icy," i.e., at the time when the axis of the Earth shifted more than twenty-three degrees some eight thousand years ago. He does not specify if the island or the portion of the continent thus struck with sudden barrenness was swallowed up, as in the Legend of Thule, or continues to exist somewhere in the vicinity of or inside the Arctic Circle. He does not mention, either, the stages that the trustees of the eternal Vedas -- Wisdom hidden in the sacred texts of this name -- had to traverse between their Arctic fatherland and the first colonies they founded in the Northwest of India. And, his work not being addressed to initiates -- who would have no need for it anyway -- but only to oriental scholars of good faith, whom he knew are insensitive to any argument not supported by proof, he does not evidently say anything of the "underground" initiatory centers, Agartha and Shambhala, which are so often an issue in the secret teaching that the "Thule Society" gave its members -- a teaching that was thus received by, inter alia, Alfred Rosenberg, Rudolf Hess, Dietrich Eckart and, probably via the latter, Adolf Hitler himself. (Agartha, or Agarthi, is the center placed "under the wheel of the Golden Sun," that is to say, that to which are attached the contemplatives who refuse in advance to take part in the businesses of this world: that of sages whom I called "men above Time." Shambhala is, by contrast, the spiritual center of the men "against Time": initiates who, while living in the eternal, agree to act in this world "in the interest of the Universe" according to immutable values, or, to employ the equivalent words of the Führer, according to the "original sense of things." It was, naturally, to this second center of the Masters of Action that Adolf Hitler was attached.)
It is remarkable that the names of Agartha and Shambhala "appear several times on the lips of more than one head of the SS during the Nuremberg tribunals, and, more particularly, of the SS who were among the persons in charge of the Ahnenerbe" (Brissaud). This organization, inter alia, sent to Tibet "an expedition directed by the ethnologist Standartenführer SS Doctor Schäffer" (Brissaud, ibid). The fragments of his reports, which exist on microfilms in the "National Archives in Washington, D.C.," appeared "extraordinary" to André Brissaud, who read them. Why such an expedition? Admittedly not to try to find in Central Asia, "the origins of the Nordic race," as Brissaud seems to believe. Under the Third Reich, even school children knew from reading it in their textbooks -- some of which, such as that of Klagges/Blume, So war das Reich, were remarkable -- that this race had migrated from the North towards the South and the East, and not conversely (Klagges/Blume) No. What was wanted, undoubtedly, by Doctor Schäffer and his collaborators, was rather to try to penetrate the mystery of Agartha and Shambhala, perhaps to test, with the assistance of the heads of a spiritual center where it appears, to come into contact with the principle (because it is a principle, not a character) that René Guénon calls the "King of the World" (Guénon, The King of the World). That seems all the more plausible as, among the sections of the Ahnenerbe whose work was classified "secret business of Reich" and "of which one was entirely unaware," "one included, in addition to the study of old languages, of cosmology and archaeology, that of 'Yoga and Zen'," and another was interested "in esoteric doctrines and magic influences on human behavior" (Brissaud).
Moreover, it is not only with the initiates of the Forbidden City of Lhasa (and perhaps with the Dalai-Lama himself) which the spiritual élite of the Order of the SS -- which was that of a new Traditional civilization in potentiality, if not currently in gestation -- sought to make contact. In my humble knowledge, there were also similar encounters in India -- meetings that people hardly suspect in the West -- and completely apart from the political conversations that took place with certain Hindu leaders, such as Subhas Chandra Bose, in India and in Germany, before and during the Second World War.
There appeared in Calcutta, beginning in 1935, a "cultural" review, The New Mercury, very skillfully published by Sri Asit Krishna Mukherji in collaboration with Sri Vinaya Datta and some others. The speeches of the Führer, of which the official press in English as well as in Bengali reported only extracts, were printed there in extenso, especially if they presented, as was often the case, an interest beyond "politics." One of them, which had then particularly drawn my attention, related to the subject of "Architecture and Nation." But the aforementioned review also published studies on anything that could illuminate a profound non-political connection, going back very far and very deep, between traditional Hindu civilization, which had never ceased to exist, and traditional Germanic civilization, as it had existed long before Christianity, and aspired to rebirth in what was essential. These studies revealed in their authors, beyond indispensable archaeological scholarship, a serious knowledge of cosmic symbolism. Several were, it goes without saying, centered on the Swastika. They seemed to want to show -- indirectly -- the exceptional character of a great modern State that recognized for "its own" a Sign of such a universal range, which engraved it on all its public monuments, stamped it on all its standards. It suggested at the same time the aspiration of this great State to renew contact with the primordial Tradition -- from which Europe had been detached for centuries, but which India had kept as a priceless deposit.
I do not have any evidence that the services of the Ahnenerbe played any role whatsoever in the publication of The New Mercury. That appears to me, in fact, as very improbable since this special section of the SS was itself founded only in 1935 -- the same year as the review. But I know that the latter was at least partly supported financially by the government of the Third Reich. Germans, and the representatives -- German or not -- of German firms in India, were supposed to subscribe to it. And one of them at least, to my knowledge, was recalled to Germany, having been dismissed from the direction of the branch which he governed for years, for having refused to do so and declaring that "this propaganda in a new style" (sic) did not interest him.
The founder and editor of the periodical, Sri A.K. Mukherji, remained in close contact with Herr von Selzam, Consul General of Germany in Calcutta, as long as he remained in this station. And this official representative of Adolf Hitler, the day before his departure, gave to Mukherji a document addressed to the German authorities in which it was specified in all letters that, "no person in Asia has rendered services comparable to his." I saw this document. I read it and read it again, with joy, with pride -- as Aryan and as Hitlerian, and as wife of Sri A.K. Mukherji. I already mentioned this in these discussions.
It is not possible for me to say if the "services" in question had or had not gone beyond the rather narrow limits of the activities of Sri A.K. Mukherji as an editor of a semi-monthly review that was Traditionalist and at the same time Hindu and pro-German. It would indeed seem that they went beyond them -- because the review lasted only two years, the English authorities having prohibited it towards the end of 1937, shortly after the definitive "turning" in the evolution of the British policy vis-à-vis the Reich. In any event, I did not yet personally know Sri A.K. Mukherji at that time: his name evoked for me only the existence of the sole review of clearly Hitlerian tendencies that I knew in India. But something leads me to believe that the knowledge that he had subsequently, and even before, of esoteric Hitlerism, i.e., of the profound connection of the secret doctrines of the Führer to the eternal Tradition, did not have any common measure with the vague impressions that I myself could have had on the same subject. During the very first conversation that I had with him, after having had the honor of being introduced -- on 9 January 1938 -- to him who, less than two years later, was destined to give me his name and his protection, asked me incidentally what I thought of ... Dietrich Eckart.
I knew that he was the author of the famous poem "Deutschland Erwache," a combatant of the very first days of the Kampfzeit, dead a few weeks after the failed "Putsch" of 9 November 1923 at the age of fifty-five years, the comrade to whom Adolf Hitler had dedicated the second part of Mein Kampf. I was still unaware of the existence of the Thulegesellschaft and was consequently far from suspecting the role that the poet of the national revolution had been able to play for the Führer.
I displayed with enthusiasm my pitifully small scholarship. My interlocutor who had rendered -- and was soon going to render -- to the Third Reich (and later to its Japanese allies) "services comparable to those of no one other," smiled and passed on to another subject.
The opinion that Adolf Hitler was an agent of diabolic Forces, that his initiation was only a monstrous counter-initiation, and that his Order of the SS was a sinister brotherhood of black magicians could not -- without a doubt! -- be any more widespread among anti-Hitlerians with more or less a smattering of occultism. (And they are not lacking.)
But it is not the same in India.
Initially, one faces there a completely different "spiritual landscape." Instead of dealing with groups with more or less "initiatory" pretensions moving in the midst of an immense secular society infatuated with applied sciences and "progress," and especially worried about its material well-being, we are in the presence of a traditional civilization, quite alive in spite of the increasing influence of technology. The man of the masses, not-poisoned by propaganda since he still enjoys the "blessing of illiteracy" (to use again a favorite expression in the Führer), thinks more than an individual of the same social standing in the West -- which among us is not an achievement! He thinks, especially, in the spirit of the Tradition; witness the Sudra youth whose story I recalled at the beginning of these Memories and Reflections.
The Hindu who has attended school and even studied in Europe or in the USA is not therefore hostile to the Tradition. The idea of natural hierarchy, of biological -- thus racial -- heredity, closely related to the Karma of each person, is familiar to him. And in the immense majority of cases, he sees according to immemorial rules of his caste -- even though the "progressive" government of so called "free" India (in reality a grotesque copy of the Democracies of the West) has proclaimed the suppression of the castes and imposed universal suffrage. In certain cases, of course, he brings subversive ideas or shocking practices back from his contacts with foreigners. But then he is scorned by his own, and orthodox society turns away from him -- no government having the power to force matters, he has to accept it whether he likes it or not. As for the traditional initiatory groups and the isolated Masters of true secret science, they continue to exist as in the past -- in silence, unperceived by the general public. They are held, in theory, out of the swirl of politics and do not give press conferences. At most a word, a remark made near a visitor respectful of the Tradition although himself uninitiated, can sometimes allow one to divine the terrestrial sympathies of this or that sage.
There are also, as one has to expect in a time of universal decline, people who make a profession of "spirituality" and groups that claim transcendent Masters and claim to transmit a so-called "initiation" without having a shadow of a right. The charlatans in orange tunics -- or naked, their bodies covered with ashes -- who trail around the temples, especially in the places of pilgrimage, living by begging or swindling, posing as "gurus" to credulous widows, are not lacking. They are rascals, but of small scale and limited noxiousness. Infinitely more dangerous are the individuals or the groups who work to inject into India -- as much as possible -- the anthropocentrism inherent in the religious or political doctrines influenced more or less directly by Judaism or the Jews. I mean by this all the individuals or groups who, under cover of a false fidelity to the Tradition which they twist and disfigure as they please, preach egalitarian principles, democracy, horror of any violence, even detached violence, when this is exerted against "men," whoever they may be -- whereas the monstrous exploitation of animals (and trees) by man hardly disturbs them (if they are not completely indifferent there, and even if they do not justify it!). I think of all those who claim to pay homage to "true ancient wisdom" by obstinately denying any natural racial hierarchy, by condemning the caste system in principle, by preaching the "right" of people of different races to marry if they believe they are finding "their happiness." I think of those who would like to replace, among Hindus, the old privileges of caste with privileges based on "education" (in the Western sense of the word), and replace the concern with metaphysical orthodoxy with an increasingly more intense preoccupation with the "social," the "economic," "the improvement of the living conditions for the masses." I think of the organizers of "Parliaments of Religions," of advocates of a fusion between "East and West" at the expense of the spirit of the Tradition common, in the beginning, to both, and that Hinduism alone preserved as the basis of civilization; with missionaries of a morality centered on "man," as conceived in the Christian West and the rationalist West.
The "Mission" which claims divine Ramakrishna -- a true initiate who lived in the last century -- seems more and more to tend in this direction, under the influence of Western benefactors, especially Americans. But this tendency does not date to today. It has been more than one hundred and fifty years since the foundation of the Brahmo Samaj Society of deists profoundly marked by their English university education and the "Protestant" form of Christianity. This sect, under pretext of bringing Hinduism back to a so-called "original purity," interpreted it according to the "modern spirit," which René Guénon so correctly deplored as the influence of Europe. But, as Guénon goes on to say, in spite of the social position of its members and, what is more, the high the caste of the best known of them, they are rejected by orthodox Hindus. They refuse to give them their daughters in marriage -- or to accept theirs for their sons. And in the villages, they would not accept from them a glass of water -- and, I repeat, no government has the power to force them. This attitude comes from what the followers of Brahmo Samaj reject as the principle of the caste system: the unequal "dignity" of men according to their heredity. It comes from the fact that Brahmo Samaj is not Indian -- no more than are the other sects of the same spirit, whatever they are.*
[*For example Arya Samaj, which has "Arya" in its name even though it too rejects the idea of a natural hierarchy of races.]
I do not want to go into detail on those. That would carry the reader too far. But it is not possible for me to overlook two organizations that were founded in South India: one, the Theosophical Society in Adyar close to Madras; the other, the community that was formed in Pondicherry around the wise Bengali Aurobindo Ghosh, now deceased.
The first is a vast international institution of subversion in the deep sense of the word, as Guénon has shown extremely well in his book Theosophy, a False Religion. What they would like to pass off as "doctrines" is a farrago of arbitrary constructions of the intellect and various notions and beliefs of which the names -- karma; transmigration of souls, etc. -- are drawn from the Hindu and Buddhist traditions. These notions and beliefs are quite as arbitrary, and scarcely as orthodox, as the theories they go into -- such as, for example, the idea of the "group soul" of animals dear to Leadbeater; such as, also, everything the Theosophists teach about their various "Masters": Koot Hoomi, Rajkoski, and others. The illustrious Lokornanya Tilak, whose work I quoted above, compared Annie Besant, President of the Theosophical Society until her death in 1933 -- and for a time President of the Indian National Congress -- with the she-devil Putna, sent to nurse the Child-God, Krishna, in order to kill him with her poisonous milk. Tilak hoped that, like the young God who, while assimilating the poison with impunity, finally killed Putna by emptying her of all her substance, Hindu society could be defended and confound those who try to seduce it with skillfully disguised untruths.
The other institution developed around an apparently genuine sage. However it tended, already during his life, to descend to the level of an enterprise of very skilful and very lucrative exploitation. Indeed, it bought one after the other all the houses of Pondicherry that were for sale, so that it included in 1960, apart from the center where some disciples dedicated themselves to meditation, many workshops for pottery, joinery, weaving, etc, etc. ... whose products were -- and are still to -- day-sold for profit; co-educational schools, with sports classes; a university, provided with richly equipped laboratories.
This prosperity is, I am told, due mainly to the business genius of the "Mother" of the ashram -- a woman of Jewish origin, the widow of a Jew, then of a Frenchman* -- and the son that she had with her first husband. Members of the organization, full at the same time with zeal and practical direction and enjoying the confidence of these two people, are also, perhaps, persons in charge, each one following his talents. In any event, in the reception hall, where there are many photographs of the late guru and the "Mother" for sale -- large and small, for all budgets -- one is impressed by the business-like atmosphere of the place, an impression that is specified and intensified during a visit of the workshops. And one recalls, by contrast, the spiritual energy that emerges from certain writings of Aurobindo Ghosh: his Commentaries on the Bhagavad Gita, his Divine Life or his Synthesis of Yogas. There is the feeling of a deep rift between this more than flourishing organization which covers two thirds of a city of more than one hundred thousand inhabitants, and the wise one who lived there in the most complete isolation -- invisible to the crowd and even to his disciples, except for a few hours a year.
[*Mr. Paul Richard, her first husband, was called Alfassa. The "Mother," still alive when these pages were written, died since then -- in 1973 -- at 95 years of age.]
However, there is a fact which seems to me eloquent, and it is this: in the midst of this traditional civilization that is still that of India, it is precisely from these organizations -- the most secular, the most "modern," in a word the most anti-traditionalist -- that the gestures, writings, and declarations hostile to Hitlerism came.
Aurobindo Ghosh himself did not, to my knowledge, ever express a judgment "pro" or "contra" any of the great figures or the great political (or more-than-political) faiths of our time. He had definitively left action -- and what action!* -- for contemplation, and it was confined to the spiritual domain. But at the end of 1939 -- or was it 1940? -- the newspapers of Calcutta published that the "Ashram of Pondicherry" had made the colonial Government of India a gift of ten million pounds sterling "to help the British war effort." Mr. de Saint-Hilaire, known as Pavitra, secretary of the Ashram, whom I questioned on this point in 1960, answered me that he "could not say to me" if information collected and published twenty years earlier in the press of Calcutta was exact. But he told me that "that could well be," considering that Hitlerism went, according to him (and undoubtedly also according to more than one person having some influence in the ashram), "against the direction of human evolution." (Against evolution? And how! Nothing could be truer! But far from being a reason to fight it, it would be, on the contrary, a reason to support it. Universal decline is a sign, more and more visible, that our cycle advances rapidly towards its end. Any combat against it, all "return to the eternal principles," necessarily goes "against the direction of human evolution." It is a phase of the perpetual fight against the current of Time. But this is, I repeat it, I insist on it, a reason -- the imperative reason -- to exalt rather than to condemn it.)
[*He had, at the beginning of the century, played a leading role in the anti-British "terrorist" movement of Bengal.]
In addition, the heads of the Theosophical Society -- according to René Guénon, Masters of counter-initiation, in spite of their claims to the contrary -- proved, during and after the Second World War, how much they hated (and hate still) the doctrines of Adolf Hitler. Arundale, then President of the Society, traversed India in search of compliant, i.e., purchasable, priests and ordered prayers for the victory of the "Crusade" against National Socialism.* And one only has to open any issue of Conscience, the official organ of Theosophy, to see displayed in black and white anti-Hitlerian propaganda that has nothing to envy in the contemporary newspapers of England or the USA, and even the press of the Soviet Union (after they heard of the rupture of the Germano-Russian Pact of 23 August 1939). It is not only to the supposed invisible "Masters" of the Theosophists, Koot Hoomi, Rajkoski, and others -- that one attributed "secret missions" for the success of the United Nations.**
[*Crusade to Europe is the title of the book of General Eisenhower on his campaign against Germany.]
[**In 1947 Gretar Fels, President of the Theosophical Society of Reykjavik, assured me that "Master Rajkoski" had "helped the Allies" to fight Nazism.]
Apart from the Theosophical Society -- even it in close connection with certain Western Masonic Lodges -- it is among the Hindus of the dissident sects, such as Brahmo Samaj, where I met the only anti-Hitlerians who crossed my path in India -- apart from, of course, the great majority of non-German Europeans and all the Communists without exception. I will cite, for example, only the open air University of Shantinikétan, which represents then and always the Brahma Samajist milieu par excellence. The poet Rabindranath Tagore, its founder, was still living when, in 1935, I spent six months at this university in order to improve my knowledge of the Bengali language and to learn Hindi there. I noticed there nothing special except the presence, as "a German professor," of a Jewess of Berlin, Margaret Spiegel, known as Amala Bhen, who had come, after two years of staying in the ashram of Gandhi, to spread her hatred of the Third Reich to the pupils who were entrusted to her and the Hindu colleagues whom she could indoctrinate. I soon knew that "Govinda," the Buddhist monk whose saffron-colored robe and beautiful Burmese parasol added a picturesque note to the landscape, was also a Jew from Germany. I was also told of the profound friendship that bound the poet to Andrews, a British former Christian missionary. But nobody expressed to me hostility towards my Hitlerian faith -- except Amala Bhen.
This one, to whom somebody thought it good to introduce to me "as European" on my arrival in Shantiniketan, was, at the end of hardly half an hour of conversation, extremely well versed on the "pan-Aryan" nature of Hitlerism such as I conceived it and always conceive it. She hastened to tell me -- she who had come to the end of the Earth "not to see the shadow of a Nazi anymore" -- that I was "worse than the whole pack rolled in one" -- of those whom she wanted to avoid so much. Indeed, she told me, they marched in the streets of the cities of the Reich singing: "Today Germany belongs to us; tomorrow, the whole world!" but they thought especially of Germany, in spite of the words of their song. While I, while insisting on the deep identity of the Hitlerian spirit and of that of orthodox Hinduism, prepared the way for future military and moral conquest and the unlimited influence of the German Reich which would extend throughout Asia.
These remarks flattered me well beyond my merits. But the hostility of Margaret Spiegel, known as Amala Bhen -- and undoubtedly that of "Govinda," which he took good care not to present to me -- appeared to me still confined to the non-Hindu element of the University of Shantinikétan.
It was surprised to learn a few months before the Second World War that the poet Rabindranath Tagore himself had sent to the Führer a telegram of protest against the invasion of "poor Czechoslovakia." Why did he interfere? -- he whom I could not help but exalt for his work as an artist. Didn't he realize that it was especially the poor Germans of the Sudetenland who had the right to be protected? Didn't he know that Czechoslovakia had never been anything but an artificial State, an assembly of elements that could not be more disparate, built of all parts to be used as permanent thorn in the side of German Reich? But what could I say? Would he have even been able to trace the map of it? Then why this indiscreet intervention? Had it been suggested to him -- or inspired -- by the foreigners, Christians or Jews, whom I have just named, and by others, all humanitarians and antiracists -- at least anti-Aryans -- who haunted Shantiniketan occasionally, or who lived there?
Or wasn't I rather to admit that such an artist -- who could reveal, under his pen of genius, something luminous and musical in a neo-Sanskrit language such as Bengali -- a Brahman who rejected en bloc the caste system, could only be anti-Hitlerian? The standpoint of the poet against the Defender of the Aryan élite of Europe, in a European conflict, shocked me even more as Rabindranath Tagore had a complexion of ivory and the most traditional features of the White race -- physical signs of a relationship without mixture with those Aryan conquerors who transmitted to old India the Tradition of Hyperborea. But I could -- I would -- have thought that, if these same visible signs of Aryan nobility had not been able to prevent him from joining his voice to that of the despisers of the "Law of color and social function" -- varnashramdharma -- in India, it was not very probable that they had been able to become in him the occasion of an awakening of ancestral conscience, bound as it must with an unspecified sympathy to this European and modern form of "the Brahminic spirit" that is Hitlerism.
On the other hand, I was always agreeably struck by the comprehension that I met, as a Hitlerist, from orthodox Hindus of all castes.
I have, at the beginning of these discussions, related the episode of the Sudra youth with the beautiful historical name of Khudiram* who showed more understanding of true values -- and a more exact appreciation of the role of Adolf Hitler -- than all Democrats of Europe and America put together. I also quoted Satyananda Swami, the founder of the Hindu Mission, for whom, however, the creation of a Hindu front united against the influence of Islam, Christian missionaries, and Communism, counted much more even than the strict observance of orthodoxy. This one held our Führer to be an "incarnation of Vishnu -- the only one in the West."
[*It is the name of a young hero of Bengal, who gave his life for the independence of India].
I could, on this subject, multiply my recollections and recall, for example, the admirable Brahman of Poona, Pandit Rajwadé, so versed in knowledge of the works of Nietzsche as if they were sacred texts (which he commented on, twice per week, in front of a narrow circle of disciples) and who professed deepest admiration for the "king chakravartin of Europe" come "to restore the true order" in a world adrift. I could also tell of another hardly ordinary man -- less well-read perhaps, but gifted with a strange power of clairvoyance -- whom I met at the beginning of the war in a friendly family, of which he was the guru or spiritual master. This sage said to me: "Your Führer can only be victorious because it is the Gods themselves who dictate his strategy to him. Every evening, he doubles himself and comes here to the Himalayas to receive their instructions."
I wondered what Adolf Hitler would have thought of this unexpected explanation of the victories of the German army. I said to the holy man then: "It is, in this case, unquestionable that he will gain the war".
"No," he responded, "because there will come a time when his generals will reject his divine inspiration and will disobey him -- will betray him."
And he added: "It cannot be otherwise; if he is an Incarnation, he is not the supreme Incarnation -- the last of this cycle" -- Alas!
But that is not all. How could I forget the atmosphere of the orthodox Hindu families that I know best? That, for example, of the house of one of my brothers-in-law, then still alive, a doctor in Medinipur, where I was at the time of the Norway campaign and the beginning of the France campaign? All agreed with enthusiasm with my suggestion to go to the temple of the Goddess Kali -- to the "House of Kali," as one says in Bengali -- to return thanks to She who at the same time blesses and kills for the triumphal advance of the soldiers of great German Reich. We went there in a procession, carrying offerings of rice, sugar, flour, fruits, scarlet garlands of flowers -- in the absence of the blood sacrifice the idea of which the family rejected as much as me. I still recall accompanying a youth also proud of his Aryan descent, standing in front of the terrible Image with the curved saber. Inhaling the incense fumes, soothed by the enchanting musicality of the Sanskrit liturgical formulas, I sometimes closed my eyes to see better in spirit the imposing fresco of the procession of the German armored tanks along the roads of Europe. I intensely lived my role of unifier between the oldest living Aryan civilization of the East and this Aryan West that Adolf Hitler was in the process of conquering in order to return it to itself and to regenerate it. Then I looked over my nephews and nieces, and the young Brahmans, their neighbors and fellow students, who had accompanied me. And I dreamed of the day when I would finally see the new Emperor -- the eternal Emperor -- of the Twilight Lands [Abendland = West], awakened and emerged from his mysterious cave, and when, greeting him with my extended arm, I would say to him: "Mein Führer, I bring to you the allegiance of the élite of India!"
That did not appear an impossible dream then.
How could I forget the general joy in Calcutta -- and undoubtedly also in the rest of the peninsula -- at the news of the entry of the troops of Adolf Hitler into Paris, or, some twenty month later, with the news of the stunning advance of our Japanese allies to the border of Assam and beyond? The children themselves, newsvendors, their faces radiant, triumphantly threw to the public the names of the cities taken -- every day the news: Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Rangoon, Mandalay, Akyab ... Imphal, in Indian territory -- one after the other. The colonial government had prohibited listening to German radio. People who understood German listened to it clandestinely. I know Hindus who lent their ears without comprehending a word of it -- simply to hear the voice of the Führer. They felt that He who spoke to the Aryan world in an "Indo-European" language that was unknown to them was also addressing them -- at least the racial élite of their continent.
But still that is nothing. What is even more extraordinary is that this worship of the Führer has survived in this country after the downfall of Third Reich. I found it alive at the time of my stay in India from 1957 to 1960, and I find it again, to my joy and in spite of intensified Communist propaganda, in 1971, and that, I repeat, especially in the milieus most faithful to the Tradition.
In the book devoted to India in the "Small Planet" collection, the orientalist Madeleine Biardeau, herself definitely hostile to our Weltanschauung, is obliged to note it -- with regret, not to say with bitterness. "In no country," she writes, "did I hear more praise of Hitler. Germans are congratulated for the sole reason that they are his compatriots."* And she is as obliged to admit that the resentment of the Hindus towards British domination -- now finished anyway -- does not suffice to explain this worship. The scholar has, underhandedly as one would expect it, an explanation that is suitable for her. The Hindu, she says, feels and honors the presence of the Divine in all that is "great" -- even the "great in the evil." In other words he is free of the moral dualism that still underlies, almost always, the value judgments supported by the man of West.
[*Madeleine Biardeau, L'Inde, "Small Planet" series.]
That is certainly true. But that is not a sufficient explanation. The only justification for this praise addressed to a foreign Aryan leader in India resides, not in the fact that the Hindu easily transcends moral dualism, but in the reason that accounts for this fact. This reason is to be sought in the attachment of the Hindu to the Tradition, in addition, in his acceptance of the sacred knowledge with complete confidence, even if he himself did not acquire it. It is in the name of this more than human science that he finds natural that, in certain circumstances, that which, on an average human scale, would seem "evil," is not. It is in the light of the doctrines of necessary violence, exercised without passion "in the interest of the Universe" -- i.e., of Life, not of "man" -- it is in the light of the venerable Bhagavad Gita, which proclaims the innocence of violence of this nature, that the orthodox Hindu can precisely see in the Master of the Third Reich -- despite all the propaganda about concentration camps that has saturated all the rest of the men on this Earth for several decades -- something other than "the incarnation of Evil."
Moreover, it is impossible for him not to be struck by the similarity of spirit which exists between Hitlerism and -- not, certainly, philosophies of non-violence, which were detached from the Brahmanic trunk, or the sects of Hindu dissidents -- the most rigorous and oldest Brahmanism. One and the other are centered on the idea of purity of blood and the unlimited transmission of healthy life -- above all of the life of the racial élite; the life that allows the man who controls himself to rise to the level of a god. One and the other exalt war fought with an attitude of detachment -- "war without hatred"* -- because "nothing can be better to the Kshatriya" -- or the perfect SS warrior -- "than just combat" (Bhagavad Gita, Song II, verse 31). One and the other establish on the Earth -- as do all the "traditional" doctrines as well -- a visible order modelled on cosmic realities and cosmic Laws of life.
[*It is the subtitle of a book published after the war on the career of Field Marshall Rommel.]
This worship of the Führer, surviving in India in spite of so much enemy propaganda well beyond the disaster of 1945, is, moreover, a proof -- if one were in need of one -- that Hitlerism, stripped of its contingent German expression, is also indeed attached to the primordial -- Hyperborean -- Tradition of which Brahmanism seems to be the most ancient living form. It is undoubtedly attached to it by what has, in spite of the imposition of Christianity, survived in Germany of a very old and properly Germanic traditional form, rising from a common Source: the holy "Arctic fatherland" of the Vedas ... and the Edda.
It is impossible to say to what extent the Thulegesellschaft was in possession of this priceless heritage from the depths of the ages. No doubt some of its members -- Dietrich Eckart, Rudolf Hess, and, of course, the Führer himself -- were. One of the features specific to the initiate would be the capacity to simulate -- at all times he considered it suitable to his designs -- anger, madness, imbecility, or every another human state. Now the Führer compelled himself -- he says so himself -- "to appear hard." And his too famous paroxysms of rage -- on which the enemy pounced with delight as a source of ridicule exploitable ad infinitum -- was, according to Rauschning, "carefully premeditated" and "was intended to disconcert his entourage and to force them to capitulate" (Rauschning, 84). Hermann Rauschning, who at the time he wrote his book apparently hated his former Master, did not have any reason to destroy, as he does with the stroke of a pen, the legend that aimed at discrediting him in the eyes of more than one level-headed man. Or rather, if he had a reason, this could be, despite everything, a remnant of intellectual honesty.
As for Rudolf Hess, the comedy of "amnesia" that he so masterfully played during the Nuremberg Tribunal misled the most informed psychiatrists. And the "normal" tone, sometimes even playful, of his letters to his wife and his son* -- which disconcerts the reader from a man more than thirty years a prisoner -- suffices to prove his super-humanity. Indeed, only an initiate can write, after three decades in a cell, in the light and detached manner of a husband and father traveling far from his family for three weeks.
[*Frau Ilse Hess published two collections of letters of her captive husband: London, Nuremberg, Spandau and Prisoner of Peace.]
The Führer, according to all appearances, exceeded his Masters of the Thule Society (or anywhere else), and escaped the influence that some of them -- one will never truly know which -- would have liked to have had on him. He had to do it, being sovereign, being one of the visages of He-who-returns.
And if abruptly the war took a bad course; if -- what is at the very least disconcerting -- the point of no return was Stalingrad, which, according to some, was even the site even of ancient Asgard, fortress of the Germanic Gods, it is undoubtedly because, for some hidden reason, it had to be so. And hadn't the young Adolf Hitler had that revelation under the night sky, at the top of Freienberg, at the gates of his beloved town of Linz, at sixteen years of age?
The immediate material cause, or rather the occasion of the fatal turning, had to be not a fault of strategy on behalf of the Führer -- it is recognized that he was never mistaken in this field -- but some stiffening, as sudden as it was unfortunate, in his attitude vis-à-vis the adversary. Siegfried, the superman, once showed such pride fraught with consequences by refusing -- so as not to seem to yield to a threat and therefore to fear -- to return to the Rhine maidens the Ring that belonged to them by right. This gesture would have saved Asgard and the Gods. The refusal of the hero precipitated its downfall. The new Siegfried, undoubtedly, also not to appear "weak," although no challenge had been launched against him, refused to exploit, as he certainly could, the goodwill of the people of the Ukraine -- anti-communists, aspiring to their autonomy -- who had initially received his soldiers as liberators.
Did he do it knowingly, realizing that the loss of the war, written in the stars from all eternity, was a catastrophe necessary for Germany and the entire Aryan world that only the test of fire could one day purify? It is something only the gods know. The speed with which Germany has, since the first years of the post-war period, taken the bait of material prosperity without any ideals, shows how much, in spite of the enthusiasm of the large National Socialist gatherings, it was only incompletely freed from its comfortable humanitarian moralism and superficially armed against Jewish influence, as well as profound "politics," i.e., exerted in the field of values.
It remains true that, in his famous Testament, the Führer calls upon the Aryans -- all the Aryans, including the non-German ones -- "of centuries to come," exhorting them "to keep their blood pure," to fight the doctrines of subversion, in particular Communism, and to remain confident of themselves and invincibly attached to the aristocratic ideal for which he himself fought. The National Socialist party can be dissolved; the name of the Führer can be proscribed, the faithful hunted down, forced into silence, dispersed. But Hitlerism, nourished from the Source of super-human knowledge, cannot die.
It also remains true that the men of the Ahnenerbe were not all, after 1945, hung as "war criminals" or killed with a bullet in the dungeons or the concentration camps of the victors. Some even seem to have enjoyed a strange immunity, as if a magic circle had surrounded them and protected them before the "judges" of the Nuremberg Tribunals.
The section of the Ahnenerbe that dealt in particular with esoteric doctrines had, according to André Brissaud, "eminent collaborators in the persons of Friedrich Hielscher, Wolfram Sievers, Ernst Jünger, and even of ... Martin Buber, the Jewish philosopher" (Brissaud, 285). (Why not, indeed, if this Jew had reached a high degree of knowledge in "pure metaphysics," and was not politically active? Doesn't D.H. Lawrence write somewhere [in The Plumed Serpent] that "the flowers meet and mix their colors at the top"?) André Brissaud "does not know" if Friedrich Hielscher was a member of the Thulegesellschaft. He presumes it. But he knows that this senior SS officer "certainly played a great role in the secret, esoteric activity of the Ahnenerbe, and had a great influence on his disciple, Doctor Wolfram Sievers, Standartenführer SS and secretary-general of this Institute" (Brissaud, 285). "At the time of the last trial in Nuremberg," continues the historian of The Black Order, "Friedrich Hielscher, who was not prosecuted, testified in a curious manner: he made political diversions 'to drown fish' [to waste time] and made intentionally absurd racist remarks, but did not say anything of the Ahnenerbe. Sievers too did not speak. He listened to the evocation of his 'crimes' with an apparent detachment and heard himself condemned to death with total indifference. Hielscher obtained the Allies' authorization to accompany Sievers to the gallows, and it was with him that the condemned said the prayers particular to a cult about which he never spoke, neither during interrogations, nor during his trial" (Brissaud, 285-96).
One cannot but wonder how many old SS members like Hielscher of some section of the Ahnenerbe -- this guardian of the profound orthodoxy of Hitlerism, i.e., of the esoteric knowledge which constitutes the base of it -- escaped the revenge of the victors and live still today on the surface of our Earth, it does not matter where. There is perhaps in Germany even that one circle that one does not know because they carry the Tarnhelm of divine Siegfried: the helmet that allows the warrior to appear in whatever form he pleases and even to make himself invisible. It would be even more interesting to know how many young men less than twenty-five years old are already affiliated, in absolute secrecy, with the fraternity of the knights of the Black Order, whose "honor is loyalty," and are preparing, under the direction of the elders, to climb the levels of initiation -- or are, perhaps, the first climbers of it.
No book like that of André Brissaud, or René Allau, or anyone, will ever provide, on this point, the curious with information which they only have to find and which, once in their possession, would risk being spread sooner or later through irresponsible chattering. For true disciples of the Führer, who did or did not meet him in the visible world, the existence of such a top secret, pan-European, even pan-Aryan network, is not in doubt anymore. The raison d'être of this invisible and quiet fraternity is precisely to preserve the core of more than human traditional knowledge -- on which Hitlerism is centered, and which ensures its perenniality. Sincere Hitlerists, but still without experience of initiation, will come there if the Masters, guardians of the faith, judge them worthy. But then they will not speak any more than Friedrich Hielscher or Wolfram Sievers, or so many others. "He who speaks does not know; he who knows does not speak," said Lao-Tsu, whose wisdom remains intangible and whole, even if his country -- most ancient China -- rejects it today.