THE DIVIDED LAND
From his arrival in Dusseldorf on the night of June 14, 1963, His Holiness Kirpal Singh stepped into an extremely busy program. The Conference of the East Prussians, sponsored by the Landsmannschaft Ostpreussen (Association of the Expellees from East Prussia) was the highlight of this program. This Association was a development of the "Representation of the Expellees from the East" movement, which aimed at re-settlement and restitution of rights to East Prussian refugees. Many leaders from the religious, social and political spheres were attending this Conference, and Sant Kirpal Singh had been invited by Dr. Alfred Gille, President of the Landsmannschaft Ostpreussen, as a Guest of Honor.
On the morning after Kirpal Singh's arrival, the President of the Landsmannschaft Ostpreussen visited him at his hotel and welcomed him to Dusseldorf. The secretary of the President presented His Holiness Kirpal Singh with a bouquet of flowers and also extended a welcome on behalf of the members of the Association. About fifty distinguished personages, from all parts of the world, came to the hotel to pay their respects to the great light-bearer from India.
Roy Anderson, leader of the Seventh Day Adventists, from Washington, D.C., visited the hotel and discussed the World Fellowship of Religions with Kirpal Singh. Agreeing that the W.F.R. could be a tremendous factor in helping to avert a global catastrophe, Mr. Anderson said: "If only we could at least unite in the name of God!" Sant Kirpal Singh said that this was completely possible, and Roy Anderson enthusiastically agreed to become a vice-president of the World Fellowship of Religions.
The pre-Conference atmosphere in Dusseldorf was charged with the many discussions and debates of the nature of mankind's problems. Many readjustments of consciousness in individual, national and world affairs were felt to be required. Such readjustments would probably mean a re-focussing of national interests and would take place over a period of many decades. A two-thousand-year era of separativeness has been responsible for the birth of many creeds and societies which are representative of exclusive ideas and ideals. From the dissemination of these ideas—keynoting as they do the negative emotions of separation, suspicion and fear—has grown that collective feeling of trepidation and mistrust which has blighted the lives of the world's peoples. Periods of military inactivity—as it relates to large-scale warfare—have only engendered an all-embracing fear of war, hunger, plague and poverty.
The Reverend James McWhirter, an eminent Anglican minister and Editor of the Church of England magazine "Everyman," visited Sant Kirpal Singh and was immensely interested in the World Fellowship of Religions and its projected World Conference, the third so far, which will probably take place early in 1965. On the afternoon of June 15, Kirpal Singh and his party attended a reception given for all foreign guests. Distinguished guests from many countries were gathered there. The general topic of conversation was the fact that, in the world today, many intelligent men and women are gripped by emotions of uncertainty because they have no understanding of the true meaning of life. A question would constantly arise from the depths of their beings: Is there not some Power, greater than the collective governments of humanity, that is overshadowing the world and is ready to help a humanity lost in strife and conflict? The priest and clergyman would answer this question in the affirmative: God is that Power. Nevertheless, the theologian can tell us little else about "God," and we need further enlightenment from a Master-Teacher.
Religious leaders and political representatives, attending this Dusseldorf reception, were quick to salute the Master-Teacher in their midst. All showed admiration for the dedicated labor of love which was being demonstrated in Kirpal Singh's efforts for interfaith unity and for the spiritual enlightenment of mankind. To these eminent people Kirpal Singh propounded the same message of love. He told them that without love no lasting peace can be maintained—in the world, and without the spiritual-realization of each and every human being there can never be true love. God is love, and our soul being of the same love, that love is innately enshrined within us. It was Shamas Tabrez, a Muslim divine, who states that, "if you perform the outer rituals and ceremonies of worship for a hundred years, and have not developed love for God, you cannot be true worshippers. If you know not love, you cannot be aware of the mystery of God."
Mr. Fakussa, an official representative of the Arab States, listened to the Master with an intense interest. At first he was attracted by the Master's noble and imposing physical appearance; then, and more important, he was attracted by the simple and yet authoritative words of wisdom which the Master gave out. Mr. Fakussa was amazed to hear that Kirpal Singh was an exponent of the Surat Shabd Yoga—the Science of the Soul—and that he could, at the very first sitting, connect the soul to the Light and Sound Principle within. Mr. Fakussa had searched for the true spiritual Path since childhood and he had acquired much knowledge of spiritual things. But he had never imagined that he would ever have the good fortune to meet a Living Master, a Master who was great enough to be able to instruct a disciple in the correct method of rising above body consciousness and actually give firsthand experience of the God-in-action-Power.
Professor Nerman, a personal friend of the King of Sweden, visited Sant Kirpal Singh and discussed the World Fellowship of Religions. He was accompanied by Mr. Arva Horn, a representative of the Baltic States. Kirpal Singh outlined the principles of the World Fellowship of Religion and the Professor responded with these enthusiastic words: "I think that this is the only hope for saving humanity. If, as your Holiness states, people would only try to understand their own religion in Truth, they would automatically place themselves in a better position for understanding other religions. Thus all racial difficulties which spring up between us would be easily overcome."
George Dewey, a noted American journalist representing many U.S. publications, evinced great interest in the work of the World Fellowship of Religions. He recognized that Kirpal Singh was a spiritual ambassador of God, bringing to the world the all-embracing love of the God-realized man. The Reverend Gerhardt Wessler, Dr. Austin App and Professor Hollenweger also discussed the great mission of spiritual unity with His Holiness. All enquired as to the possibility of bringing an ageless message of love and goodwill before disillusioned mankind. Would a new social age, oriented to spiritual reality, bring new modes of living? These modes of living could be very different from those which we have been accustomed to. It is our duty to develop a higher vision and to relate it to the needs of humanity on a global scale. We can no longer consider one section of the world-community as subservient to another. Great progress has been made in the field of scientific endeavor; and the peoples of the world, through their immense capacity for invention and crea-tiveness, have become more interdependent and highly aware of each other's problems. But the main ingredient for progress was spirituality.
Baron Hans Joachim von Blomberg, Dr. Roberto Alemann and Mr. and Mrs. Kienitz-Garcia were amongst further visitors and delegates, all seeking to know more about the mission of Sant Kirpal Singh. The charming Countess Mara Bnin de Bninski discussed the World Fellowship of Religions with its President and graciously invited Kirpal Singh and his party to be her guest at Wentworth Castle, New Hampshire, during the American stage of the tour. Such occasions of goodwill and true cooperation were to be witnessed many more times on this World Tour. It was in Europe, particularly, that Kirpal Singh showed the Christian world the need for the initial acceptance of Unity-in-God in all Christian sects, and for the further step of recognizing the universality of God's Message given in all the great social religions.
During the Dusseldorf visit, when Kirpal Singh called on His Eminence Archbishop Andrey of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church, the Archbishop warmly embraced the Master. "I have heard much about you," he said, simply and sincerely, "and I am very happy to meet you." Archbishop and Sat Guru sat down together and discussed spiritual matters of mutual interest. Archbishop Andrey graciously accepted a vice-presidency of the World Fellowship of Religions, stating that he was willing to serve in whatever way Sant Kirpal Singh suggested. He invited the Sat Guru to visit his residence in New York when the Master and his party arrived in that city.
On the morning of June 16, 1963, the Conference of the Landsmannschaft Ostpreussen was held in the vast Rheinstadion, Dusseldorf. Over two hundred thousand people attended this Conference, and many speeches were made, including a strongly-worded address by Herr von Hassel, the Defense Minister of West Germany. Whatever the immediate solution that can be applied to the great problems of human rights which were set before this Conference, there is no doubt that Western civilization, which has grown in tremendous power, has at the same time depleted its population of young people and children through two terrible global conflicts. If any country wishes to take the initiative in the moral leadership of the world, it must become strong in the ways of peace. This does not imply the development of an inert, flaccid form of pacifism. The true principle of peace is a dynamic and active one which can only be brought into existence when mankind has developed its faculties of self-analysis and self-realization. This is an inclusive religious goal, proclaiming the fact of God-immanent as well as God-transcendent, teaching the principle of man-making, true spirituality, as the panacea for all the strifes and conflicts of mankind.
Later that day Mrs. Una Byrne, President of the Housewives Association of Dublin, Ireland, called on Sant Kirpal Singh to discuss his forthcoming visit to the Republic of Ireland. Warm-hearted and dynamic, with a fine sense of humor and charm, Mrs. Byrne overflows with an energy and enthusiasm which affects all who come into the orbit of her many activities for human betterment. A true Celtic whirlwind of action, Mrs. Byrne was responsible for the tremendously successful plans and arrangements of the Irish stage of the World Tour. Mrs. Byrne accepted the responsibility of being the representative for the World Fellowship of Religions in the Irish Republic.
Each morning at his hotel, Kirpal Singh gave meditation sittings to the disciples and seekers. Due to the busy schedule in Dusseldorf the devotees from that city and other parts of Germany had to wait several hours for interviews with their Sat Guru. To their great joy, this problem was finally solved by allotting one whole day to them. In the evening of June 18, the awaiting disciples were gathered together in the presence of their Master. Kirpal Singh asked them if they wanted him to talk or if they would prefer to ask questions. He would clear up any difficulties or problems for them. With one accord they pleaded for another meditation sitting. "In meditation, with your blessing, all our problems solve themselves and our difficulties vanish," said one of them, echoing the sentiments of all. "After this we are left with such love and tenderness that we want for nothing else." The Sat Guru gazed at each one of his spiritual children in turn and then granted their wish. When the meditation sitting was over, he gave a brief talk.
Love for humanity and love for God was again the theme for his talk. But it was an inexhaustible and ever-changing theme in the universality of its presentation. He told them that Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of the Sikhs, had expounded the same truths as given by Christ and all. the Masters: "Hear ye all, I am telling the truth. Those who love, they get to God!" A lover of God will be the lover of all the past Masters and their holy scriptures. Love of all mankind and all creation will make a lover of all the social religions, a lover of all holy places and a worshiper at all places of pilgrimage. A lover of God will never consider molesting anyone in thought, word or deed. On June 19, Kirpal Singh visited the home of Frau Hilda Spindler, one of his disciples in Dusseldorf. He held a meditation sitting for the disciples there—many of whom had recently arrived from Bonn and other cities— and then left for Hamburg. His disciples had realized the wonder of company with God: for a God-realized man is the mouthpiece of God, and all the scriptures of the world testify to this. To gain initiation from a Master-Saint is the greatest blessing one can receive on earth. The Master-Saint holds the key to the Kingdom of God. God has bestowed His greatest Gift in sending the "hungry and thirsty ones" a true Master; and God is the greatest Gift that the Master can himself bestow upon us.