More letters from India 13
by Premananda

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March 13, 1974

Dear Mom and Dad,

I got your letter of March 3 today. I was also concerned about the tax business, but as it turns out, I shall be returning before the 28-30th or so. After days of hassling through the unbelievably chaotic bureaucracy of the government here, I gave up on trying to extend the visa. I tried my best, but I doubt if there is a more messed up government anywhere in the world. They send you in circles from office to office since on one knows anything and no one will take the slightest responsibility. And going from one office to another is no simple problem—it involves going by rickshaw and hassling over fares, trying to get on buses that are jam packed beyond belief, and trying to fight your way off once you are on. Oh! I have had so much more of a view of the really mind-boggling problems here this time. It leads one to despair since there is really no solution except radical change in people themselves and that is not likely. More likely the population will get reduced by famine or war and that is a rather ugly picture. Every nation has its unique strengths and weaknesses, and some cooperation and exchange is absolutely necessary for world welfare. Anyhow, I was advised not to come again on a tourist visa. I had an intuition long ago that my third trip to India would be a long one and perhaps it will. On a student visa, if I can finagle it, I can stay six months to one year or even more. So, that will be better next time.

Baba will tape his life history soon and take me to his birthplace. I have learned a bit of Bengali and can say simple things. I will learn much more next time.

I appreciate your comments about imagination, believe me, and this trip surely has been a test of that, or rather, I have put everything that has happened to the test. I have always been annoyed with people who blow up small visions to great things, and it is that very distrust of all that is superficial and imaginary in spiritual things which led me to Baba. It is that discrimination which kept me from accepting any of the many gurus I went to as my own guru. I was looking for the "real McCoy" for five years, and I do believe I have found him. His power is such that he will continue to guide me even when I return to America, and his purity is such that he will never misguide me. It is he superhuman love which issues from his heart which seems to wipe away any doubts in my mind. We cannot believe in such a Jesus-type of love until we see it, and even then, we are so astonished we say "What? Can it really be?" It is so rare, like a diamond. And even more precious. And here is a beggar who had attained that love—diamond living hidden in a remote village without any want whatsoever. I call Baba the Beggar King. He has nothing and wants nothing for he lives in bliss. He has tested me, as he promised he would, and I have tested him. There is no way to describe what it is like to look in he eyes—that’s all.

I am very glad to hear bout your TM efforts. This is very good and will start to make more sense the more you do it. The mind will get more concentrated and strong and simplified. We must understand our own mind if we want to understand this life we are living. The whole earth is at the crossroads now. Humanity can evolve now to a higher sort of creature, or degenerate back to semi-beasts. This mass movement of TM will help mankind as a whole calm down and take stock, and for you personally, it will be a stepping stone toward understanding even higher things. Stick to it. I am very pleased at your open-minded desire to keep on growing and growing the whole life long. Without constant growth, we stagnate and that becomes a terrible misery. The best thing is to realize "I don’t know" and go from there. If a person really wants to grow all the forces of life itself, come to serve Him. He moves always in a dimension where life is always new. Well, give my love to all and stay well. I’ll be making plane reservations tomorrow or the next day and will probably leave India about the 24th or 25th. Athena will meet me at the airport.