THE ROCKS OF THE SUN
The Externsteine, 23 October 1953, in the evening
We rolled through and past Horn, without stopping, turned to our right as we reached the outskirts of the town and then, after another five hundred yards, to our left, and followed a beautiful asphalted road bordered with trees, and meadows beyond which more trees — that same, unending Teutoburg Forest in autumn garb, that I was never tired of admiring, — could be seen. I looked right and left, and ahead, and did not speak. I was watching the approach of evening upon the fiery red and yellow and brown of the leaves ready to fall, and thinking of the captive eagles and of enslaved Germany, and longing for the Day of Revenge — “der Tag der Rache” — as steadily as I had been, as a matter of fact, for the last eight and half years.
Then, suddenly barring the road, a row of vertical rocks about a hundred feet high, — but looking much higher, especially from a short distance, — appeared, evenly grey against the bright background of the sunset sky. I recognised them at once for having seen pictures of them, and exclaimed in a low voice, with ravishment: “Die Externsteine!”
We stepped out of the car. I stood, automatically, apart from the other travellers, as though I were aware of the fact that we belonged to two different worlds; that they, even though they were Germans, were, here, but tourists, while I, even though a foreigner, was already a pilgrim.
I looked up to the irregular stone shapes that stood between me and the further forest, into which the motorable road leads. The familiar outlines fascinated me. Not that I was, for the first time in my life, visiting a place stamped with the prestige of immemorial Sun-worship: it was anything but the first time! I had seen Delphi and Delos, and the ruins of Upper and
Lower Egypt: Karnak and the Pyramids. And I had, in India, visited the celebrated “Black Pagoda”1 built in the shape of a Sun-chariot resting upon twelve enormous wheels, each of which corresponds to a sign of the Zodiac, and presenting in sculpture the most splendid illustration of Life at all its stages — in all its fullness — from the wildest erotic scenes that adorn most of the surface of the lower walls, to the serene stillness of lonely meditation —: the meditation of the Sun god Himself, whose seated statue dominates the whole structure. And I had visited the extraordinary temple of Sringeri, every one of the twelve columns, of which is struck in turn by the first Sun-rays, on the day the Sun enters a new constellation. But I had never yet (save once, in Sweden,) found myself upon a spot sanctified by the worship of our Parent Star — the old worship of Light and Life — in a Germanic country. And these Rocks, I knew, had been the centre of Germanic solar rites in time without beginning. I felt like a person who has walked a long way and a long time — who has come from a very, very distant country, — with a definite purpose, and who, at last, reaches the goal. I had now attained, if not the end (for there is no end), at least the culminating point of my pilgrimage through Germany and through life. And I was happy. I had reached the Source where I could replenish my spiritual forces for the eternal Struggle in its modern form: the Struggle of the Powers of Light against the Powers of Gloom, experienced by me as that of the National Socialist values against those both of Christianity and of Marxism, — of the oldest and of the latest Jewish doctrine for Aryan consumption, which I had fought and would continue fighting untiringly.
I gazed at the irregular dark grey Rocks; and tears filled my eyes. And as the people with whom I had travelled bade me goodbye to follow the guide who had come to take them round, I was glad: I wished to see the Rocks without haste and, as far as possible, alone.
* * *
Right before me stood the highest rock; a long, rough cylinder — or rather, a prism, — of stone, very slightly inclined to the
1 The Konarak Temple, near Puri.
left like the trunk of an enormous tree that time had worn, and human beings mutilated, without being able to destroy it. I knew that, at the top of that rock is the sanctuary from which the wise ones of old used to greet the Earliest Sunrise, on the morning of the Summer Solstice Day. From below, I could see the bridge by which one accedes to it today — the bridge that now joins the highest rock, commonly called “the second,” to the next one on the left, commonly called the “third” (called so, at least, in the one detailed archaeological study which I had, up till then, read, concerning the Externsteine.)
Slowly I walked up the stairs hewn into the live rock on the side of the “third” cliff, halting now and then to admire the landscape over which my eyes wandered, from a little higher at every new step I took: the small lake into the still waters of which the furthermost cliff to the right — the “first” — plunges vertically; the thick woods beyond; the extension of the road by which I had come, past the slope on the left and past the: lake, into further woods; and, on the other side — to the northeast, whence I had come — the wooded hills around and beyond Horn and Detmold. In the sunset glow, the reds in the autumn forest appeared brighter, and the browns, redder. And the lake was a smooth surface of shining darkness and bright orange-gold, on the opposite side of which I could see the upside-down reflection of the forest. I went up and up and, having crossed the bridge without daring to throw a glance into the void below, I found myself standing in the age-old sanctuary that I had come to behold. And I shuddered, overwhelmed at the feeling of being on holy ground.
It is difficult to tell what the sanctuary once looked like. Today, — nearly twelve hundred years after its systematic destruction through Christian fanaticism, — one steps unto a stone pavement some six yards long and not quite four yards wide, without a roof. At one end of the room, to one’s right as one now comes in, i.e., to the North-East, one sees a huge piece of rock — a part of the very cliff on which one is standing — carved out into a vaulted hollow, the ground-level of which is a foot higher than the pavement. In the midst of it, hewn out of the same one block of stone, is a stand, with a flat, table-like top about a foot wide and two and a half feet deep; and above
this, cut out in the solid, natural, north-eastern wall of the mysterious room, an opening, as perfectly circular as can be, something over a foot (37 centimetres, exactly,) in diameter. At the other end of the pavement, — to one’s left as one enters from the bridge, i.e., to the south-west, — is a rectangular niche, higher than even a very tall man, some five feet broad or so and over a foot deep, with a pillar each side of it. And in the rock wall opposite the bridge, — to the north-west — is a window looking over the neighbouring cliff and the lake beyond. The once existing walls between the vaulted room and the rest of the structure, on the south-east and the north-west, are now replaced by iron railings. The roof of the sanctuary was the eastern portion of the top of the cliff itself. It has been destroyed, leaving the whole place, with the exception of the vaulted hollow, as I have said, open to the sky.
My back to the south-western wall, behind which the Sun was now setting, I gazed at the ruins of the venerable high place. Here, at the time the great Egyptian kings of the Twelfth Dynasty were building their mighty temples and everlasting tombs; at the time the mysterious sea-lords of “Middle Minoan II” ruled Crete and the Aegean Isles; before the earliest dated Aryan conquests in the East,1 — four thousand years ago and more, — the wise men, spiritual leaders of the Germanic tribes, and guardians of the natural Values that made their lives worth living, would gather, and greet the Earliest Sunrise, on the sacred Day, in June. In the midst of the stand in the vaulted chamber, one can still see a square socket. There used to be a rod stuck into it, the summit of which was on a straight line both with the lowest spot on the brim of the round opening in the north-eastern wall, and a spot in the middle of the niche against which I was standing — the Solstice-line, running North-east South-west. So that, when the rising Sun would appear exactly at the lowest brim of the round stone opening, and, at the same time, exactly behind the upper extremity of the rod, to an observer standing in a rigourously determined place in the middle of the niche, then one could
1 In Babylonia, in or soon after 1926 B.C., by Gandash, founder of the Kassite Dynasty (See H. R. Hall, Ancient History of the Near East, ninth edit. p. 199). According to Indian authors, the first Aryan invasions of India were still much earlier. But they cannot be dated exactly.
say, with certainty, that it was the Summer Solstice Day, on the correct detection of which the whole calendar — and, subsequently, the festivals, and the whole life of the community — was dependent. For a few days before and a few days after the Summer Solstice, the rising Orb would appear within a certain radius, on the side brim of the round opening. The spot of its appearing would seem to travel, from a place on the side of the circle down to the lowest section of it, and up again. The wise men used to watch it day after day, in order to make out when, exactly, the earliest Sunrise, — the Sunrise rigourously according to the unchanging Solstice-line, — would be. And as they saw it — one spot of intensely bright gold on the rim of the circular opening; one ray of light into the dark chamber, — they would shout from the top of this rock the spell of victory announcing the beginning of the great Summer festivity to the people assembled below: “Siege, Licht!” — “Triumph, Light!” I thought of this, which I had read, and which I had been told by modern Germans faithful to the old solar Wisdom; Germans who had gone back to it, in an unexpected way, through that modern Faith in Blood and Soil — that Aryan Faith: National Socialism, — that binds me to them. I thought of this, and imagined, or tried to imagine, the solemn scenes that have taken place, year after year, upon this rock, for centuries, nay, millenniums; scenes of which the regularity had seemed eternal like that of the reappearing of the sacred Days. And I thought of the abrupt end of the Cult of Light; of the destruction of this most holy place of ancient Germany by Charlemagne and his fanatical Frankish Christians. I pictured to myself half the top of the Rock — which had once been the roof of this sanctuary — violently split from the rest of it and thrown down there, where its fragments can still be seen; the desecrated holy room; the persecuted holy Land, on whose people the foreign creed of false meekness, of which they are, even today, not yet free, was forced by fire and sword. I pictured to myself the Frankish soldiery, — men of Germanic blood, “crusaders to Germany” in the name of a foreign prophet and of a foreign earthly power — storming these hallowed Rocks; killing whomever they found; setting fire to whatever would burn; through terror, preparing the way for the new teachers: the monks, true “re-educators of Germany” in the worst sense of
that much-detested word, who would (if they could) stamp out every spark of the old solar Wisdom, — of Aryan wisdom, — in its main European Stronghold.
This had happened in the year 772 of the Christian era — one thousand one hundred and eighty-one years before. But how tragically modern it all looked! These very first “crusaders to Germany” appeared to me, more vividly than ever, as the forerunners of Eisenhower’s sinister “crusaders to Europe.” They had fought in the name of the selfsame hated Christian values, ultimately for the triumph of the selfsame international power, both temporal and spiritual — the Church — which was, and still is, the power of Jewry in disguise. They had fought against the selfsame everlasting values of Germanic Heathendom — the natural, heroic religion of the noblest people of the West, in which, both then and now, the Aryan Soul has found its most accurate expression on this continent. And they had persecuted them with similar savagery, and still greater efficiency, perhaps; with similar, and even greater, Germanic thoroughness. And I remembered that Eisenhower (a curse upon him!) is also of German descent. And once more I hated the madness that has, so many times in the course of history, thrown people of the same good Nordic blood into fratricidal wars for the sake of childish superstitions which the Jews — and their willing or unwilling agents, — have put into their heads without them even suspecting it.
And as the picture of the destruction of the old religion and of the Christianisation of Germany, not merely in all its cruelty, but in all its thoroughness imposed itself more tragically upon me. I realised — not for the first time, but yet, perhaps more intensely than ever before, — that the main dates of Charlemagne’s war against the Saxons, 772 and 787, are, from the German and, which is more, from the broader Aryan standpoint, even worse than 1945. For the stamp of the foreign creed, and especially of the foreign, anti-natural, anti-racial scale of values, is visible to this day in all but a minority of Germans: in all but an even smaller minority of Europeans. The spirit of the healthy Aryan warrior and sage — the spirit of detached violence for the sake of duty alone; our spirit — took over a thousand years to reassert itself through a proper doctrine of German inspiration, in a German élite, after the disaster inflicted,
then, upon those who expressed it. While in spite of enormous losses and no end of suffering we, — the National Socialist minority; the modern Aryan Heathens — have survived this disaster; survived it with our burning faith and our will be begin again. And we shall not need a thousand years, nor even a hundred, nor even ten, (if circumstances be favourable) to rise once more to power. It may be that the new world we were building lies — for the time being — in ruins, at our victors’ feet. But our Weltanschauung is intact within our hearts. And there are younger ones ready to carry on our work, when we shall be dead; younger ones who shall, one day, defy Germany’s “re-educators” and their programme, and their teaching and their spirit, even if an angry fate denies them the pleasure of killing their persons.
At the thought of this, I felt elated. I looked round me, at the lonely, desecrated sanctuary; above me, at the overhanging, slanting rock, from which the massive monolithic roof had been violently rent, nearly twelve hundred years before — the permanent scar left by the first “crusaders to Germany” upon this high altar of the national cult of Light. And in a flash I recalled my own life-long struggle against the Christian plague — in Greece, in the name of destroyed Hellenism; in India, in the name of unbroken Hindu Tradition; everywhere in the name of Aryan pride and Nature’s truth. And I imagined the similar part I would like to play, here, among my Führer’s people, after the re-installation of the National Socialist New Order, one day, never mind when. “Yes, we are alive,” thought I, full of self-confidence and full of confidence in the German minority that thinks and feels as I do. “Defeat has not killed us; it has only made us a little bitterer and still a little more ruthless. One day we will avenge you, wounded Rocks that have been calling us for so long, and you, our elder brothers, warriors who died defending the approaches of this high place! Wherever I be when our Day dawns, may the heavenly Powers grant me to come back, and take an active part in the revenge!”
I was thus thinking when one of the guides stepped in from the bridge along with two tourists: two young men; a German and an Englishman. He told them in a few words what one knows of the sanctuary, of its original orientation according to the Solstice line, — north-east, south-west; — of the destruction
wrought by Charlemagne in 772. He spoke of the Irminsul: the symbolical Pillar sustaining the axis of the Universe, the summit of which is the “World-Nail,” i.e., the Polar Star. “We know from contemporary records that a famous image of that cosmic Pillar — a column from the top of which sprang two symmetrical curves, with a point (in the direction of the Northern “World Nail”) in the midst of them, — stood somewhere near Altenbeken, not far from here, where Charlemagne and his followers destroyed it as an ‘idol.’ According to the opinion of most scholars, another one, possibly of gold, was to be seen upon these Rocks. But one cannot tell with certainty, whether it stood upon this cliff or upon the one looking over the lake.”
The young Englishman did not know German. His companion did not know English well enough to translate to him all that the guide had said. He turned to me, apparently impressed by the way I seemed to be listening to his translation. “Can you speak English?” inquired he in German.
I reflected a second. Should I reply: “Nein!” as I had to some “Tommies” who had asked me the same question in a railway carriage, and thus put an end to the conversation? But this English boy was not a “Tommy”; nor a “damned occupant.” One could exchange a few words with him — or help him to understand the guide’s explanations, — without feeling one’s self a traitor to the German cause. Or was he a British soldier in civilian clothes — in spite of the fact that he looked such a child? I first asked his companion, who told me that he was an English student come over to spend a holiday and to “see Germany with his own eyes.”
“In that case I can speak English,” stressed I. And I translated the guide’s words and, (needless to say,) added fiery comments of my own about the behaviour of those who brought Christianity to this unfortunate land.
And I was glad to have suddenly found someone, — be it a boy young enough to be my tenth or twelfth child — upon whom I could inflict my bitterness on that very spot where the persecution of Germanic Heathendom (still lasting) had once begun.
* * *
The young Englishman walked down the steps by my side. He had listened, apparently with interest, to my tirade. He turned to me a thoughtful face. “I don’t blame you,” replied he. “All that you say about Christian hypocrisy is perfectly true —
true in all respects, not merely in connection with war and violence. In fact, I am myself no churchgoer. I am an admirer of D. H. Lawrence, the great English writer. You have heard of him, surely?”
I was a little disappointed. To be candid, I would have preferred the young man to have been a thorough Christian with a Crusader’s mind; I would have liked to have found in him the usual opposition — and to have enjoyed the pleasure of crushing it flat (be it in an academic argument, rather than not at all) here, upon these Rocks, stronghold of the old Germanic Sun-creed; my — our — sacred Rocks. But instead of that . . . I was offered the opportunity of a discussion about the author of Lady Chatterley’s Lover!
“I have read most of his books,” replied I simply, in answer to the young man’s question about the famous writer.
“And what do you think of them?”
“They are beautifully written, which is the first thing that books should be,” said I. “And great cosmic truths underlie most of that which Lawrence says, so much so that, as far as I can imagine, those who share my philosophy of life would, as a rule, agree with him. And that, in my mouth, is a very great praise . . .”
“And of all his books which you have read, which do you like the best?” the young man asked me.
The Plumed Serpent, answered I, unhesitatingly, — “the symbolical story of the revolt of a national soul (never mind which) against international Christianity; the development of the idea that, only through the proper understanding of the age-old wisdom of one’s own people can one really attain to the knowledge of cosmic Reality, i.e., experience it; live it . . . That is, at least, the meaning which I give the book. But every reader, I suppose, interprets it in the light of his or her own faith.”
The young Englishman looked at me enigmatically, and was silent for a minute. Then, as we were reaching the last steps, he put me a new question:
“May I ask you what is your faith?” said he; “for I feel sure you have one.”
It would have been so simple to say, as I had to the men who had arrested me, some four and a half years before: “I am
a National Socialist.” But I was now free. And I needed to keep my freedom — and incognito, — in order to write and speak, in waiting for the time when I would do more. The boy surely looked harmless enough; but one never knows . . . Moreover, the glorious words would probably not have conveyed to him the full, more-than-political significance which we give them. I answered, instead:
“I worship impersonal Nature, which is neither ‘good’ nor ‘bad,’ and who knows neither love nor hatred. I worship Life; the Sun, Sustainer of life. I believe in the Law of everlasting struggle, which is the law of life, and in the duty of the best specimens of our race — the natural élite of mankind — to rule the earth, and to evolve out of themselves a caste of supermen, a people ‘like unto the Gods.’”
It was much longer to say than the mere two words. But it meant exactly the same. And, given the stupidity of the Democratic world, in which a greater importance is laid upon words than upon facts, it was — strange as this may be, — not a bit dangerous.
The young man merely smiled. I shall never know whether he understood me or not.
* * *
We walked to the foot of the cliff by the lake and halted before a more than life-size relief, carved in the rock, on the lower part of the latter — to one’s left as one stands facing the cliff. The relief represents Christ being taken down from the cross and is, according to some scholars, a work of the early twelfth century, while, according to others,1 it dates back to the very first years after Charlemagne’s destruction of the old Germanic sanctuaries. Some2 hold it to have been set up in the place of a much more ancient relief illustrating beliefs and legends of pre-Christian times, and point out to the thoroughly weathered fragments of sculpture which one can see below it, as to remnants of this presumed former picture.
As usual, the guide called our attention upon all that which is of any importance and explained. The cross, which
1 See for instance Wilhelm Teudt’s Germanische Heiligtümer, edit. 1929, p. 27.
2 Wilhelm Teudt, Germanische Heiligtümer, edit. 1929, p. 26 and following.
appeared to me as a Byzantine one, is, said he, the only one of its type to be seen in Germany. The figure on the left, at the top of the relief, is that of God the Father. The Child which lies in his arms represents the soul of dead Christ; and the flag, — the staff of which ends with a cross also in Byzantine style — is a victory banner, for the Crucified has “vanquished death through his death” (as it is said in the Easter liturgy of the Greek Orthodox Church). The Sun and the Moon are represented on the right and left of God the Father. The body of the figure holding Christ’s legs presents a curious, rather unnatural curve. And, last but not least, the feet of the figure seen leaning against the cross (and supposed to be that of Nicodemus, unless it be of Joseph of Arimathea) were originally treading, not, as some have suggested, upon “a tree” bent in two under their weight, but upon the immemorial Cosmic Pillar round which move the constellations, — the Irminsul, thrice-holy symbol of the old religion, — bent down in order to proclaim the victory of Christianity over Germanic wisdom. The guide bade us notice that Nicodemus’ (or Joseph’s) legs and feet are for centuries no longer to be seen: some pious Saxon, outraged at the sight of the sacrilege, has hacked them off, most probably at night, shortly after the relief was set up.
“Gosh, how well I understand him!” exclaimed I, aloud, retrospectively no less indignant than any Saxon of old could have been at the thought of the creed centred around the “dignity of every human being” and their “equality before God,” replacing that centred around mathematical Order and warlike, aristocratic pride. “How well I understand him! And how gladly I would have helped him!”
An elderly lady who, already before our arrival, was standing in front of the relief, with a book in her hand, turned round and pointed out to me that the sacred Symbol of the old cosmic Wisdom was “bent, admittedly, but not broken”; in other words, that Christianity — “real Christianity,” added she; “not that which would excuse Charlemagne’s pious violence;” — did not abolish the older wisdom, but completed it, treasuring the truth expressed in its time-honoured allegories but setting it “in the right place”: below the “supreme spiritual values” that Christ came to reveal. I knew at once, — through my experience of such people as she, — that what she styled “real”
Christianity was some brand of esoteric teaching centred around the Christ mythos, although I could not make out whether it was the Rudolf Steiner brand or the Rosicrucian brand, or what other one (there are so many!). Unfortunately for her, I consider any teaching centred around the Jesus Christ mythos and based on some more or less “symbolical” interpretation of the Christian Gospels, just as dangerous as official Christianity, if not more. I know what was the attitude of those “esoteric” Christians (or Christian-like dabblers in esoterism) — Theosophists, Anthroposophists, Rosicrucians, members of the “White Fraternity, etc. . . . — to the Third Reich, and what they all think, to this day, about our National Socialist faith. Had I met this woman during the glorious years, I would have looked upon her with contempt — thought, at the most: “The poor fool!” — and said nothing. But now, I gave her a glance of concentrated hostility, as though she were personally responsible for the desecration of these holy Rocks (which she was, in fact, just as I am responsible for every coercive measure taken by the Third Reich; just as every believer is responsible for whatever was, is, or will be done for the triumph of his or her faith). And I spoke, — while the guide and my two companions walked on:
“Bent is even worse than broken,” declared I, bluntly, alluding to the woman’s remark about the Irminsul. “You may like the idea of the faith of our forefathers — Europe’s natural, Aryan faith, — pushed into oblivion by a partly Jewish creed. I don’t. And I can really see nothing to make a song and dance about, in those overrated ‘spiritual values’ set forth by Jesus of Nazareth. The Buddha preached universal love over five hundred years before him, and King Akhnaton of Egypt, some nine hundred years before the Buddha. And it is not universal love that we need, anyhow, today, but Aryan pride, coupled with the grim will to survive, and logical action — uncompromisingly logical — carried on to the bitter end.”
The woman was so taken aback that she did not reply. She simply gazed at me in bewilderment — and perhaps in terror, — as though she felt in me the radiance of all that which she hated and dreaded the most. Before she had time to overcome her amazement, I had followed the guide and the two young men into the grottoes inside the cliff. The Englishman — the admirer of D. H. Lawrence, — was glad to see me appear again: his
companion was finding it more and more difficult to translate to him, without help, whatever the guide said.
* * *
The guide was speaking of the grotto in which we were standing: a long, half-dark room, communicating with two smaller ones, — one at each end of it, — like it, hewn out of the live rock. He was pointing to a pit in the ground at the foot of the rough, brownish-greenish-grey wall before us. And he was refuting the assumption of certain scholars according to whom the Romans are to have converted these grottoes into a Mithra temple, and to have used this pit for initiation rites. “But,” — was he saying — “that is supposed to have happened shortly before Hermann’s decisive victory over them, that is to say, in the days of Augustus. And the cult of the Persian god was, then, anything but sufficiently widespread among the legions as to justify the establishment of Mithra temples in occupied land. And the pit is anyhow much older than Varus and his soldiers. It was, presumably, for countless centuries, before the Romans, and until the introduction of Christianity, the seat of the Primaeval Fire, — the earthly Fire, which the Germans worshipped, along with the Sun, and Lightning, as another form of Light, Heat and Power; another manifestation of the Essence of Life, which is Godhead Itself. An actual fire, symbol of everlasting Life, — bright, ever-moving, and yet ever the same; all-devouring and all-creative, — used to burn here day and night.”
“Threefold Agni, — heavenly, earthly and subterranean, — All devouring, Origin of all . . . ,” thought I, recalling the Rig-Veda, as tears welled up to my eyes at the renewed awareness of that staggering deep unity of the Indo-European — Indo-Germanic — Race, above and beyond the rise and fall of empires; above and beyond the birth, decay and death of man-made religions.
I remembered: the most ancient Aryans, who brought India the Rig-Veda and Sanskrit culture, no one knows when, used to have fire burning day and night in their homes. And to this day, no Hindu rites of any importance, — no rites sanctioning the great events of private or public life — can be performed
1 Indo-Germanisch, in German, means “Indo-European” or “Aryan.”
without a fire. And, also to this day, a fire burns day and night in every temple of the Parsis, those last Persians of Aryan blood, faithful to the old worship of Light and Life, who made India their second home. And the ancient Greeks honoured the Threefold Fire as Helios, the Sun, as Hestia, — the sacred family Hearth — and as Hephaistos. I recalled Herr B.’s beautiful book So ward das Reich, written for modern German children, and the words which he puts into the mouth of an old Aryan Chief addressing the young men and women as they leave the Nordic Home to seek new land — new Lebensraum — to the South and to the East: “Forget not the Homeland! Keep your blood pure, and remain loyal to the faith and customs of your ancestors. And may the Father-of-Light, the Almighty One, guide you!”
How many millions, thought I, had bid farewell to the hallowed Homeland, and gone their way, in course of time . . . and held to the wise Chief’s words for centuries, and then, — alas! — under the combined pressure of personal lusts and deceitful teachings, forgotten them! The Greeks and Latins had forgotten; the Thracians, Phrygians, Mitannians, Medes and Persians, had forgotten, and lost themselves, more or less rapidly. And then the conquering equalitarian creeds of Jewish origin, — Christianity and Islam — had rolled over the world, and levelled nearly all that was left to be levelled . . . Only the high-caste Indians and the Parsis had — outwardly at least — not forgotten, to this very day . . . But they too, I was told, were now in the process of forgetting. Alone in the holy Homeland, a new persecuted minority was remembering, more vividly than ever, the eternal wisdom of the privileged Race, and living up to it.
In a flash, I remembered the far-gone days when I had dreamed of founding a worldwide “Pan-Aryan Society” with a view to contribute to the awakening of a common Aryan consciousness, preliminary condition of a lasting worldwide Greater Reich: federation of all peoples of Indo-European blood of East and West under the leadership of the first-awakened Aryan Nation: Adolf Hitler’s new Germany. But whether in old Hellas or in Aryan Asia, nobody, — or hardly anybody — had cared to see in that anything more than a crazy fantasy. And the idea of Adolf Hitler’s world leadership, be it in the highest, more-than-political meaning of the word, was not to the taste
of most Aryans outside Germany. Had Germany won the war, thought I, it would, doubtless, have been different. The atmosphere of the whole world would have changed. Maybe, the tremendous dream would not have materialised in a day; but it would no longer have sounded “crazy.” And even if it had, in foreign lands, still it would have found supporters within the expanding boundaries of the victorious German Reich. I could have given free expression to it, here, while referring to the Cult of primaeval Fire and perennial Light among all Aryan peoples of Antiquity.
And for the millionth time, the old torturing Leitmotiv of my post-war life imposed itself upon me with new bitterness: “Oh, why did I not come during the great Days?”
I translated the explanations to the young Englishman (omitting, of course, all personal reflections which they might have provoked in me).
The guide spoke again: “According to our recent great scholars, such as Wilhelm Teudt,” said he, “these grottoes were specially consecrated to the cult of the Hidden Sun and were the seat of rites connected with the Winter solstice — the Holy Night (Weihnacht) which is in Germany, still today, (within a Christian setting) the greatest Festival of the year: Christmas; the Birthday of the “Sun of Righteousness” within an underground cave in the dark bosom of Mother Earth . . .”
I recalled Gerald Massey’s book The Historical Jesus and the Mythical Christ and could not help inwardly marvelling at the genius of those agents of the Forces of Gloom who have so cleverly integrated the story of a Palestinian wonder-worker of local fame, of whom one cannot even tell whether he really was a Jew or a half-Jew or no Jew at all, into the old, old Nature-myth of Life through Death, to which they added a spiritual interpretation, and who, out of this blending of commonplace history and divine Legend, evolved, for all practical purposes, one of the mightiest anti-racialist swindles of all times. How was I, now, to contribute to evolve, out of the tragic story of my beloved Führer and of his people, the still more powerful moral and spiritual structure that is to defeat the Jewish snare? The future Form of the eternal Life-and-Death Mythos, and the new faith in earthly salvation that is to be the lasting victory of the warlike aristocracy of Aryandom and the religious foundation
of the great Indo-European Reich under German leadership? The difficulties were no doubt immense; apparently insurmountable. Yet once more I intensely felt that this was, — is indeed, — the work for which I was born.
The guide led us to the smaller room in the northern corner of the grotto. He showed us a rune upon the north-western wall. “According to scholars,” said he, “this is the rune of death. To be dead is to hide in the bosom of Mother Earth — in darkness like the winter Sun in the hallowed North; like the seed of corn that has been sown — and to prepare in silence one’s reappearing in glory; one’s rebirth; one’s new spring.”
He paused for me to translate his words to the young Englishman, and pursued: “The Winter Solstice Festival is the Festival of the Death and Rebirth of the Sun; the time when His chariot was supposed to stand still for twelve days and twelve nights, in preparation for a new glorious journey through the twelve great Constellations, round the Axis of the Universe — the Irminsul — and the Polar Star; a new Journey: — a new year.
“It is well-known that a much revered image of the Irminsul stood but a few miles from here, at Altenkeken, where Charlemagne, — his chroniclers clearly state, — went and destroyed it in 772. It seems hardly probable that there was not also one towering above these Rocks, which are not merely the religious centre of ancient Germany, but also that of Europe as a whole — the main sacred centre of Solar worship in the West, and one of the extremely few such centres in the wide world. The Symbol was apparently of pure gold, but one does not know whether it stood at the top of this cliff (which we shall ascend in a little while) or at the summit of the one we just visited. Personally, I would be inclined to give more faith to the second hypothesis to begin with, the other rock is higher than this one; and then, there is that room of the Earliest Sunrise . . .”
I was listening with ravishment; I felt sure that the old guide was, at the bottom of his heart, a Heathen like myself.
And in the darkening twilight, I gazed at the mysterious Rune, engraved in the live rock: the three converging straight (relatively straight) lines that meet and merge into a vertical one above them, like three branches of an up-side-down tree; the Rune of death: i.e., of underground life; of hidden life; of life in the bosom of the maternal, nourishing Earth, source of
new birth and growth; the sign of Life which is waiting and getting ready to reappear in all its victorious strength and beauty.
And I thought of the disaster of 1945 and of the subsequent years of persecution not yet come to an end: — of our death, which also means life underground; intense, unsuspected life, preparing, in constant, intimate contact with the hidden Powers at the very roots of our collective being, the resurrection of National Socialist Germany and the new Spring of Aryan mankind.
* * *
The guide spoke, and there was an echo. He went a step further and spoke again; but the rock did not, this time, send back his voice. He stood in a new place, and again every syllable he uttered was repeated a second or two after he had spoken.
“You see,” said he: “this echo can only be heard from very definite spots. If you ask me, the positions of these spots had a meaning to the Ancients. They were not looked upon as the result of mere accident but as the outward sign of some hidden correspondences, full of mystical potency, which connected this chamber with the other holy places upon or around these Rocks — for these were all part and parcel of one and the same organic setting. We are patiently trying to find out — if we still can — which these correspondences were, and what they revealed. We are feeling our way in the dark, in order to set our hands upon some of the treasures of our forefathers’ stupendous wisdom, of which all obvious traces have been systematically effaced. It is too early to tell whether we shall or not, one day, be successful. I believe we shall, provided we know how to use our own intuition. Scholarship alone, without the intuition of that which one studies, is useless.”
“Oh, how right you are!” exclaimed I, unable to contain my approbation.
We walked back through the main grotto and visited the smaller chamber at the other end of it — a chamber on a slightly higher level, to which one accedes by means of a few steps between two walls of rock. There were, here, no echoes to he detected; no runes to be seen, — nothing but the rough old roof-walls-and-floor surface — brownish-greenish-grey — and that atmosphere of mystery and of sacred awe, which is somewhat a common
feature of most grottoes (especially of those hallowed by immemorial religious rites) but to which I was, here, particularly sensitive, on account of the associations these Rocks evoked in me.
“We know nothing of the particular rites that were performed in this or in other parts of this grotto (or anywhere on these Rocks, by the way),” said the guide. “After Charlemagne’s conquest, and especially after the monks of the Abdinghof convent in Paderborn had acquired the whole place in the early twelfth century, everything was done, naturally, in order to turn it into a Christian holy place, and to attract pilgrims in the name of the new cult. One wanted to establish here something like a symbolical counterpart of the main features of the famous church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem, nay, of all the main places of pilgrimage in Holy Land, from the Grotto of the Nativity in Bethlehem — which this grotto, now consecrated to the Christian cult, was to “represent,” — to the chapel now installed upon the ruins of the Summer Solstice sanctuary, which we have visited, and to the Holy Sepulcher itself, symbolised by the stone coffin which we shall now see.”
We came out of the grotto, and walked down an alley running between the lawns at the foot of the Rocks, and leading towards the lake. A little before we reached the latter, we turned to our left. And there was, on the left hand side of the alley, a vault cut out in the rock over a monolithic coffin (part of the same block as it) to which one accedes by two stone steps hewn out of the same stone. At the bottom of the coffin, on the side facing the Rocks — the south-western side, — one could see a roundish hollow: a place carved out for the head of him who was to lie here.
“The remarkable thing about this coffin,” said the guide, “is that it is possible to lie in it without hearing a thing of the noises outside. It all depends on the way one lies. A difference of two or three centimetres up or down changes entirely the impression one gets. And provided one finds the right position in which one experiences silence and absolute isolation, one actually falls, I am told, into a strange unconsciousness — an irresistible sleep — out of which one can only he drawn by the sound of a horn blown from that chamber in the grotto which I first showed you: the one with the different echoes, and the
Rune. The sound is here to be heard most distinctly. (Two men who came here have actually tried the experiment out of curiosity, and proved this description of it to be in every way accurate.)
“Scholars believe that this stone coffin was originally used in the initiation process through which the wise men, — priests; or members of highly spiritual brotherhoods, or both, — had to go. The man seeking to become a new initiate would lie here all night, dead, — symbolically; freed of his personal past, of all earthly ties, through the magic of supernatural sleep. And he would, at sunrise, be called out of his trance by the blast of a horn from that room within the grotto that I have just referred to, and rise, himself a new man, — “born anew”; — a dedicated man and a leader of men along the way of life in truth. This was centuries before the introduction of Christianity, nay, centuries before the birth of Christ. In fact, by taking over this old initiation-coffin as an image of Christ’s Holy Sepulcher, the Christians merely linked the mythos of the Saviour’s redeeming death to the immemorial Tradition of Death — apparent death — as the Way to a higher and fuller life; life in glory.”
“Apparent death; the way to a higher and fuller life: to life in glory,” repeated I within my heart. And in a flash, I remembered the ruins I had seen in this martyred Land, five years before and, — still more painful to me, perhaps, — the dull, more and more comfortable indifference into which the greater number of Germans now seemed to be sinking; that weary indifference to all great Causes: that humdrum day to day life — so boring, with its little worries and its little pleasures! — from which the living presence of the Saviour of the Aryan race appears to be forever banished. When would that death end in resurrection? And what could I do, so that it should do so a few years sooner?
We went up the stairs that lead to the top of the cliff above the grottoes and enjoyed the view over the lake and forest, that one has from there. The fiery autumn colours were slowly fading away into the increasing darkness. The water of the lake was dark, — looked deep. But in a mysterious patch of light that made it shine, one could still distinguish the upside-down outlines of the bordering trees: black in the darkening greyish-brown liquid mirror, upon which still lingered, here and there,
a trace of golden sunset. On the opposite side, the mutilated Rock bearing at the top of it the Summer Solstice sanctuary, stood dark and proud against the pure sky. One could see the window in the side-wall of the old sacred chamber; and the old steps at the corner of the monolith that bears the round opening (the block itself was hidden by the north-western side of the cliff). Darkness was growing. I knew there was nobody in the Sun chamber. And I longed to see it again; to see it alone in darkness and silence. “I must go up there once more!” thought I.
The young Englishman who, since I had translated to him what the guide had told us about the stone coffin and the initiation rites apparently connected with it, had not uttered a word, now turned to me and said: “I am really glad I met you. My visit to these Rocks was for me an experience. How interesting it all is! — this constant endeavour to use old sacred sites as places of pilgrimage for the faithful of a new religion, after one has managed to create around them a new atmosphere of legend. The same has been done in England and Ireland, you know. Many of our most holy Christian sanctuaries — churches; convents; and miraculous springs and such; — are just very old centres of druidic worship, which have been connected with a new mythology. I suppose it is the same in all countries.”
“It surely is, to a very great extent, in Greece, in Italy and in France,” answered I. “And I am told it is the same in Mexico and Peru. The Christian Churches are clever: they know the way to solicit customers. Moreover, I believe there is a sort of magical power of attraction in certain spots of the earth which always have been and always will remain, and cannot but be, ‘sacred spots’ — ‘spots where the Wind of the Spirit blows,’ (to quote the words of Maurice Barnes) for reasons unknown to us; natural reasons, mind you, for the so-called ‘supernatural’ realm is nothing but . . . an unknown part of Nature.
“And the funniest point in this connection is that this natural power of attraction is sometimes cleverer than any Christian Church. The guide just now referred to that world-famous centre of Christian pilgrimages: the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem. Perhaps you know the curious — and ironical — truth above the church built (so the pilgrims believe) upon the rock of Golgotha
and the Grave in which lay the body of Jesus Christ?”
“I don’t,” replied the young man. “What is the curious fact about it?”
“The fact — now admitted even by Catholic scholars, — that the Crucifixion took place a mile or two away from the spot, — somewhere outside the town; that the story of the miraculous finding of the so-called Real Cross is just bunkum; the supposed-to-be ‘Holy Sepulcher,’ just any old stone sarcophagus; and that the famous church is built upon the foundations . . . of a former temple of Aphrodite — Jesus Christ honoured upon the old site sacred to the Goddess of lust! It is ironical, to say the least; isn’t it?”
“Not so such as it looks,” answered the young admirer of the author of The Man Who Died. And he added: “It had to be so, — for the two divinities, far from excluding each other, are complementary, whether the Christians care to admit it or not. It had to be so . . . in order to satisfy a hidden law of equilibrium.”
“Perhaps,” replied I, thinking of something else.
It was a good thing that the young man could not read my thoughts. I was saying to myself: “This fellow of an Englishman is damned sight more interesting than I had imagined. He can think. Were I rash enough to tell him the truth — what I am and what I live for — quite possibly he would not be so shocked as to reject the idea of any further discussion with me, and in the course of conversation, I could probably bring him to agree with me — with us — on many important points; who knows? perhaps, on more important points than I dare expect. And yet . . . had he been here as an Occupation soldier instead of as a student — he, the very same man, — I would have refused to speak to him. I would have hated him without knowing him; hated his uniform and therefore, automatically, hated him. And tomorrow, or next year, or the year after, if I have the good luck of still being here when our Day of reckoning comes, and if my superiors consider it necessary or even expedient, I shall send him to his doom or kill him myself without a qualm of conscience, simply because he will represent — or rather, because his mere uniform will represent, — “Democracy,” “de-Nazification,” the “re-education of Germany,” “the spirit of the Nuremberg
Trial,” etc. . . . all we hate the most. I shall do it without even my superiors holding it necessary or expedient, provided only I am sure they consider it can do no harm to our Cause. I shall do it with pleasure because, then, I shall hate him, or, again, to speak more accurately, because I shall hate his uniform. A man is what his uniform means; what he represents, or is supposed to represent; that in the name of which he allows himself to he used, even if he does not, personally, like it at all; nay, even if he be, within his heart, bitterly against it. So much the worse for him if he allows himself to be used in the name of something he does not love!
The idea that I might actually be, one day, with regard to that interesting and harmless young man, in the position I had just imagined, did not disturb me in the least. If he really were, in fact, an exception — a life-long rebel like I against all that which is implied in the words “Christian civilisation” — then, let him have the guts to come over to us in time, and wear our colours on the long-awaited Tag der Rache! If not, let him perish with all that we hate — even if he hates it too!
And I thought (for once, thoroughly pleased with myself): “Nobody shall ever force me to stand, let alone to fight, on the side of that in which I do not believe. I chose my own uniform. And wear it day and night — even in peacetime!”
We had reached the end of the stairs, — the foot of the Rocks, — and were walking back to the motorable road. The guide was speaking of some of the most popular legends connected with the Externsteine. “You remember that block of stone I showed you on the northern side of the second cliff?” said he; “the one in which some steps can still be seen? Well, it is called ‘the Pulpit,’ and people say that it is from there that Hermann the Liberator gave his last orders to his lieutenants, before his great victory over Varus in year 9. And at the very top of the fourth cliff, on the other side of the road, you can see a huge block that looks as though it were going to fall. It is called der Wackelstein — the ‘rickety stone.’ There are many legends about it. According to one of them, the Devil, angry at the fact of Christian worship taking over these Rocks, threw that stone at the priest whom he saw on the threshold of the former Sun-chamber, then a Christian chapel, at the top
of the second cliff. But the power of the Cross caused the stone to take a different direction and to land on the summit of that rock where we still can see it. The stone is rickety, for the defeated Devil threatened that, one day, it would fall and kill a woman from Horn, or, according to another version of the legend, the last princess of Lippe. Resistance to Christianity was always pictured (and magnified, through fear, by pious Christians) as the work of the Devil. And therefore there are plenty ‘Devil’s stones’ and ‘Devil’s holes’ etc. . . . in this and other parts of Germany.”
“Yes,” said I; “nowhere in Europe, and in few places in the world was Christianity faced with so great and so conscious an opposition, as here . . .” And I added: “That is precisely one of the reasons why Germany deserves to take the lead of future Europe, which will again be, I hope, a Nature-worshipping and healthy-living Aryan continent, free from Jewish fairytales, as well as from every kind of Jewish influence.”
The three men — even the guide — looked at me in surprise. But it was not so much what I had said as the passion with which I had spoken that took them aback. Years, — perhaps centuries — of bitterness, suddenly and violently thrust into full consciousness at the sight of Charlemagne’s work of destruction, had given the tone of my voice a strange potency.
In the east, the sky had grown dark — deep blue — while the western horizon was still luminous and faintly, very faintly, golden. The Rocks of the Sun towered above us and above the surrounding landscape, black against that pale background. Their wounds, everlasting reminders of Germany’s greatest defeat in history, could no longer be seen. And the Christian figures imposed upon their mutilated surface, and the cross itself, — the Byzantine cross — had also vanished into the rapidly increasing darkness. Lights had appeared behind the windows of the guest house in the neighbourhood.
“I am glad I came,” repeated the young Englishman, looking up to the Rocks; “and I hope it is not the last time.”
“Who knows? Perhaps it is not,” replied I. I was thinking of war, and of acts of open hostility against the accursed Occupation troops — of things I would myself like to do. But the young man did not detect the irony in my voice. I added:
“You came as a student to see Germany as she really is. Look how beautiful she is! Look at the landscape — and at the people. And also have a glance at the destruction your countrymen have wrought here ‘in order to defend Poland,’ — so they say, — in reality, to please the Jews. And remember you have met a woman of Indo-European stock, —a woman of your own race — who loves Germany and who is free from the Christian scale of values; even more so than from belief in the dogmas of any Christian Church.”
“I think I am beginning to understand which is your philosophy, or rather, as you say, your faith,” said the young man.
“It is difficult to say how far one understands things of which one cannot speak clearly,” replied I. “And there is no important question, no vital problem of which one can here speak clearly, for this is not a free country. Remember this, also. And don’t forget to tell the so-called ‘free world,’ which Master Churchill would like to see us defend.”
We parted. The young man and his companion, and the guide, went their way. I remained by the Rocks.
* * *
Alone, I walked up the stairs leading, up the third Cliff, to the Chamber of the Sun at the top of the second. In the midst of the bridge between the two cliffs, I halted for ravishment: behind the dark block bearing the round opening, the Moon had risen: a bright full Moon, the colour of honey, in the deep blue sky, above the distant wooded hills. The sky had become strangely transparent. And the lake, and the forest, and the whole landscape, with sharper outlines and greater contrasts of light and shade, had taken on a ghostly unreality. And half the pavement of the sanctuary, and the enormous flat surfaces of rock marking the place where the top of the cliff had been torn asunder, were flooded with moonlight — the light of the dead. Opposite me, high within the crack between the two slanting slabs, I could distinctly see the two rusted rings of iron that once — not long ago, — used to hold the staff of the proud Swastika flag which fluttered above these Rocks.
I held my breath before the beauty of the moonlit cliffs in their moonlit setting of water and woods, hills and sky. And at
the same time, I shuddered, as though their awe-inspiring sacredness had increased tenfold at the touch of the mysterious silver rays.
The interior of the vaulted chamber, in complete shade, was as dark as the holy-of-holies of any Indian temple I had seen — any of those windowless sanctuaries into which Brahmins alone, real or supposed sons of the fair Aryan conquerors of old, are allowed to penetrate. I could not see the stone stand within it. And the round opening, through which shone the pure moonlit sky, looked like a second, paler moon — a strange moon without rays, hanging in absolute darkness.
I walked into the paved space in front of the vaulted room — the outer part of the ruined sanctuary. And I suddenly was, to an immeasurably greater degree than in the daytime, aware that it was ruined. I had known it was. But I had not, — at least not with such intensity, — felt it to be so. In a flash, I recalled the sight of the torn and charred walls of martyred Hamburg, — the first ruins I had seen in Germany, on my first, unforgettable journey in 1948. And once more the two wars, i.e., Charlemagne’s against the Saxons, and the world’s against the Third Reich; — the two crusades: the one, against Germanic Heathendom; the other, twelve hundred years later, against National Socialism: Germanic Heathen wisdom in its new form — appeared to me as parallel assaults of the perennial dark forces against that perennial stronghold of the Aryan Values in the West: Germany.
I stood in the sanctuary of the Sun and perhaps also of the Moon1 — in the High Place of the eternal Religion of Light and Life, persecuted in its last and best exponents in the West for nearly twelve hundred years. Had I not all my life fought for that faith of glory and for the Aryan race, against every brand of man-made and man-centred teaching of equality that sprang, directly or indirectly, from the age-old Father of lies — the Jew, — I should have been afraid to go a step further. The pitch darkness of the vaulted chamber, in contrast to the livid brightness of the walls and pavement of the sanctuary, and of the round opening, had something forbidding. It was, I repeat, like the holy darkness of the innermost chambers of the temples of old Aryavarta, — India, — the one Land in the world where
1 Wilhelm Teudt, Germanische Heiligtümer, edit. 1929, p. 23.
Aryan gods still receive a public cult. I recalled the notices that are — or were in my time, — in the far-away Land, set up on the way to such holy-of-holies: “No admittance for Untouchables, Mohammedans, Europeans, Eurasians” — for those whose blood is mixed, and for those who profess (or are supposed to profess) a faith denying the divine hierarchy of races, and leading practically to mixture of blood. Upon the Golden Rock of Trichinopoli, as I had once hesitated to go further at the sight of such a notice, a bystanding Brahmin had told me: “Go in freely; the notice is not for you!” Here, the mysterious presence of those who died defending these sacred Rocks against Charlemagne’s crusaders (and of those who lived on, calling and waiting in vain for revenge) and the Heathen Soul of the Rocks themselves, which I felt, told me front within: “Ghostly light and forbidding darkness are not to keep you away. Come! From the beginning of Time, you were on our side!”
I stepped forwards, vividly aware of the solemnity of the minute, and happy, as though I had really been enjoying a special privilege.
I walked up to the vaulted chamber, touched the border of the stone stand in the midst of it with my right hand; lifted my arm in the ritual gesture of yesterday and of long ago — of the Sun. For a long while I said nothing. I thought: “Moonlight — reflected light of the Sun; — light of the dead. Everything has a meaning in this pilgrimage of mine, and it is not by accident that I have seen the Moon rise over these Rocks. We are dead, we modern Children of the Sun, followers of Adolf Hitler who lives forever. We are dead . . . or, at least, the world believes us to be. There is silence around us, like around the dead. There is silence around Him: the silence of superstitious fear or of deifying love, — or of lighthearted indifference. Our enemies mention Him as seldom as they can, in their speeches of hate. The many go their way as though he had never lived. And we do not speak of him, even among ourselves, save in a low voice, — as one speaks in a graveyard. The night of death has closed on us more than eight years ago, and the Moon sheds over us its livid rays and its peace: the peace of sleep, which is oblivion; the peace of that which belongs to the past.
“But the magical twilight silence and softness have no effect upon us. We remain wide-awake, waiting for the coming sunrise; for the day we shall rise, holding the Banner stamped with the Wheel of the Sun and . . . take our revenge. We know we are alive, even if the world denies it. In fact, we do all we can for the world to keep on ignoring it, so that we might take advantage of its forgetfulness and gird ourselves for the coming struggle, and make ourselves worthy to greet the coming dawn. We know we are alive. I know it now — I who lived three years of absolute despair, believing in the tale of our death. But we know that night must last its time, before the purple of dawn can appear. We are now experiencing night: the night of persecution in its subtlest possible form — the attempt of our enemies to create oblivion around us and around our Führer and all our martyrs, and all we love and stand for, — and the night of indifference within millions of those who once walked with us. But we know that it will come to an end, and that, provided we have kept our faith and remained ready, the dawning day will be our day. I know it. And these Rocks — I know that, also, — are our spiritual centre. That is why I had to behold the Moon rising above them, symbolising the night of life-in-death in which we stand. One day, I shall see the glory of Dawn upon this sacred landscape and the Swastika Flag fluttering once more above the restored High place of the Sun.”
And I added in a whisper, my arm still outstretched over the stone stand as over an alter: “May it be so — I entreat you, Forces of Light and Life who will help us win the last battle! In the meantime, help us to keep our faith and to live up to it in the midst of this hostile world that we shall one day destroy. Help us to keep the clear and living vision of the new world that we shall one day build. And protect our beloved Führer, wherever he be; under whatever aspect he be: visible or invisible! Heil Hitler!”
A thrill of elation ran through my body as though I had done something for the return of National Socialism to power. I felt at least — strange and utterly useless as my gesture may seem, — that I had done the only thing I now could do.
And I slowly walked back — across the bridge between the
two rocks, and down the steps flooded with moonlight, and along the lonely road to Horn.
* * *
The Externsteine, 30 October 1953
It must have been about five o’clock in the morning, perhaps between five and half past five. It was completely dark. And it was damp; — foggy. I had spent the night in Horn, and was now walking along the road that leads from there to the Externsteine.
For months — nay, for years; in fact ever since the last Germany victory during the war, — I had not been so happy as I was now. I was thinking of the meeting I had attended on the evening before, in another town. Oh, a very restricted meeting indeed (eight or ten people only) and not, by any means, a public one; not one of those that one advertises in the papers and on the wireless; but a real gathering of faithful fighters in times of persecution; a meeting, the type of which would become the legendary, classical one of “the dark days after the disaster of 1945,” one day, in centuries to come — when our National Socialist faith would be the undisputed faith of Aryan mankind.
I was recalling for the thousandth tine the words which Comrade F. F, a southern German, had addressed me at that meeting: “You are right: up till 1945, we were a Party — and, unfortunately, even in the estimation of number of us who should have known better, nothing but a Party. Now we have become aware of our real meaning and of our real mission: we are the first faithful of a new great Faith.”
I had waited thirty years to hear those words from a German. And tears had filled my eyes as I had at last heard them. As clearly as I could, I had explained to the few true followers of our Führer gathered to hear what I had to say, my personal conception of the infinitely more than political meaning of National Socialism: my experience of it as a religion free of cloudy metaphysical assumptions, nay, as the particular form of the Religion of Life, fit for a technically-advanced, modern Aryan society. “I am not really concerned with ‘politics,’” had I said. “It is the National Socialist Weltanschauung as
such, and Adolf Hitler’s personality that attracted me. All I want is to contribute to make our Weltanschauung the basis of a new mentality and of a new life in the West, and to link it with a new form of devotion, centred around our Leader as the perennial Saviour — the One Who comes back, — and around his people as the privileged élite of the privileged Race; the Nation that staked her all in order to show Aryan mankind the Way of life in truth, beauty and power . . .”
And Comrade F. F., — Seyss-Inquart’s countryman; and also Franz Holzweber’s, and Otto Planetta’s, and above all, our Führer’s, — had agreed with me, and replied: “You are right. Strange as this may seem, you are the true politician of the future. For in the future ‘politics’ will no longer be separated from faith and life. And the true politician will be . . . the dedicated ascetic in the real sense of the word . . .”
“The Catholic Church has known that for centuries,” remarked I. And I had added: “Then, you really believe we are the new Way and the new Church — the new great wave of faith comparable to that which carried the early Christians, as I always have so intensely wanted us to be?”
“Honestly, I do,” had replied Comrade F. F.
And I had suddenly felt myself light and free and powerful — as though I had grown wings. I had felt somewhat as I had, more than five years before, after Sven Hedin had convinced me that we have a future, and lifted me from the depth of despair to a new life. It was as good as if Comrade F. F. had told me: “You are immortal!” And I had been thinking of that meeting ever since. I could not help thinking of it. Even before it was ended I had decided within my heart that I would see the Externsteine again on my way back, and greet the Sunrise from the High place at the top of the second cliff. Something told me that I had to go there again and replenish myself with new spiritual energy, now that I knew — now that I had been told explicitly — that my life had a meaning not merely in my own eyes, but objectively, historically speaking.
And now . . . I was putting my plan to execution: going to bind myself — and National Socialism — mysteriously, ritually, magically, to Germany’s remotest past, nay, to the eternal Self of Aryan mankind and to the Essence of Aryan wisdom, through
the undying potent sanctity of the Rocks of the Sun.
I walked fast in the dark; in the fog. An inexpressible enthusiasm drove me forwards. The divine wings that I had felt growing, on that unforgettable evening of the 28th of October, carried me, — for I was secretly certain that comrade F. F. was right.
Of all feelings one can experience in this world, there is none, at least as far as I am concerned, as lovely as the consciousness of power. And the loveliest form of such a consciousness is the certitude that one is immortal and master of the future — not personally immortal, of course; nor even through one’s works, under one’s individual name; but immortal in the great historic Movement with which one has identified one’s self; in the great new faith of millions of men, which is the glorious expression of one’s higher and better self; of one’s lasting self; — the certitude that one’s dearest dreams will be a reality and the truth which one lived and lives, the ruling truth, the undisputed moral and spiritual basis of civilisation, is a world conquered to one’s faith, for centuries and millenniums after one’s insignificant physical self will be dust, and one’s personal activity forgotten.
For the first time since the disaster of 1945, I felt myself immortal in that sense, and I was happy. The world I had known and hated until now, — this post-war world, with its babble about “freedom,” “human rights,” and “peace”; with its stale, warmed-up Christianity and its stinking Democracy, — now seemed to me like a passing nightmare, more inconsistent, more unreal than the fleeting lights and shadows that now and then appeared out of and again disappeared into the fog (as a door, somewhere near the roadside, was opened and shut again; or as a lonely bicycle passed by). And my own life of forced silence and constant failure was no more than a detail not worth mentioning within the endless life of that greater, truer self of mine: awakening Aryandom, the history of which is that of our National Socialist faith.
“Within an hour or so,” thought I, “I shall be greeting the rising Sun from the old solar high place over which the golden Irminsul used to glitter in far-gone times; over which the Swastika Flag still used to flutter, less than nine years ago . . .
I shall be greeting the rising Sun . . . and stamping my life’s dream with the seal of eternity.”
* * *
The fog was slowly disappearing as I reached the sacred Rocks. But the sky was still cloudy; and it had taken to drizzling. Obviously, I would not be able to see the Sunrise. But something from within told me: “And yet, the Sun will rise; and you I will be present at His rising, although you might not see Him.” And I thought: “We too, are rising — taking consciousness of our strength once more — although the world cannot see us . . . I have seen the Moon rise, and night begin, over these Rocks, symbolising the beginning of the long night in which we have lived all these years. I shall now be present at the time the Sun ascends the sky, invisible behind the clouds, symbolising our slow, silent, invisible, — unnoticed — second rising behind the screen of world events, in the secrecy of our hidden life; in the awaiting of the time when the clouds will be rent asunder and when we shall reappear in open daylight. I will, here, live our tragic history, symbolically; and rouse the age-old Heathen energies stored up for centuries within these stones, in order that they might find a new expression in our coming struggle, and that we might draw from them the assurance of everlastingness.”
First death, and then, resurrection; first the cold grave in the heart of the rock, and then the greeting of the Sun from the high place . . .
An irresistible force drove me where I was to walk: along the alley leading to the stone coffin in which, — the guide had told me, — the would-be initiates of olden times wised to spend a night in supernatural sleep. There was no question of my imitating the wise ones. I am not a soul in quest of pure wisdom, but merely a fighter, whose business it is to bear witness to my Leader’s greatness and to the eternity of his message, and to contribute to his triumph by every means, including the subtle potency of attitude, gesture and word.
I reached the coffin within the vaulted rock, and for a while, I looked round at the lake, and listened to the sound of its waves in the darkness. The sound was endless, and monotonous
like the going by of uneventful time. “I must lie here, at least for a few minutes,” reflected I, touching the rim of the cold, damp stone. “I must lie here, in the cold and in the dark, as we have been lying in the effacement of defeat for the last nine years . . .” And I took off my shoes, and stepped into the coffin. An icy-cold sensation ran through me, as though in reality something of the power of Death had emanated from the stone. Then, as I stretched myself on my back, in the posture of the dead, I distinctly saw (some will believe that I imagined it, but I know I saw) a violet spark — a tiny lightning, — flash out of the dark vaulted rock above my head. And I shuddered, as though this were a sign that the hidden Powers knew what I was doing . . .
I could no longer hear either the sound of the waves of the lake, or that of the drops of rain, or, in fact, any sound — even that of my own breathing. For a time, I was completely isolated from the surrounding world and from my own body. My feet and legs were ice-cold, and heavy. And I felt the cold penetrating me, slowly and irresistibly. But the burning spirit lived in my heart and head, and I prayed intensely. “Hidden Powers, that govern all things visible and tangible,” said I, in a voice that sounded as though it were not mine: “All-efficient real Causes behind the apparent causes of all events, help me to understand the meaning of our temporary defeat; the meaning of the sufferings of my comrades and superiors and of our beloved Führer himself, in the scheme of things. And may I use that knowledge to forward the revival, strengthening and expansion of our National Socialist Faith, in Germany, in Europe, in the world, — wherever there he men of Aryan blood!”
Then, my mind was absorbed in meditative silence. How long did I remain in the attitude of death, at the bottom of that stone coffin? I could not tell. It was no longer dark when I stepped out.
* * *
I walked straight up to the top of the second Cliff, on which stands the Chamber of the Sun.
It was raining. The greater part of the pavement of the sanctuary (all that was not protected by the overhanging slabs
of rock) was wet. The Sun had not yet risen. (Just now, before coming up, I had asked a man on the road what time it was, and he had replied: “Half past six.” So I had half an hour more to wait.) And when it would rise, I would not see it. But at least I would be there, standing before the long-desecrated vaulted chamber as before a holy-of-holies; feeling the holiness both of the moment and of the place, . . . and thinking of the symbolism of the Sunrise that cannot be seen, yet that is, and brings, in spite of all, a new day.
In the meantime, I stood in the niche in the opposite wall, where it was dry. And I waited, thinking of the remote and of the recent past; of our present-day nothingness and yet, of our hopes; of our everlasting significance; and remembering F. F.’s words which came back to me persistently as the expression of one of those fundamental certitudes that make life worth living, even under the worst circumstances: “Until 1945, we were a Party. Since 1945, we have become the earliest community of believers in a new Faith, — or rather, we have become aware of being that, and that alone, from the beginning.”
“A new Faith,” though I; “or rather, as I have myself so often said and written, a very old one: the perennial Religion of Light and Life in its modern, Germanic form.”
I had come here to integrate this modern form of it into the oldest Aryan Tradition of East and West: the Tradition of the old, sacred Midnight Land, from which our race has come.
There was peace in the air; a peace of the same quality as that which I had experienced, over six months before, in the lonely cemetery of Leonding, where the Führer’s parents are buried, and in the church were his mother used to kneel and pray; not the peace of death, but that of life eternal. And there was peace within me, too, for I felt that I had done and was doing my best. And I knew I am to live forever — forgotten, no doubt, but present nevertheless in an impersonal manner: in the increasing glory of my Leader; in the expanding rule of all I love.
There came a moment when I was aware that it “was time”; that, behind the mist and clouds, the rising Sun had — could not but have — reached the eastern horizon.
I walked to the vaulted chamber and stood before it, my right arm outstretched in the direction of the Sun. And I prayed. To Whom? To Him-Her-It, Who has no name; to That which is and remains, behind the forms and colours and sounds that pass; to That, the thought of which gives the soul the serenity, without which there can be no detached action.
“Lord of the unseen Forces, Whom I do not know and cannot grasp, but Whose majesty I adore in the eternal Order of Nature and in the heroic beauty of my comrades’ lives — Thy manifestation, — help us, National Socialists, to keep Thy truth within our hearts, and to bring into being, one day, our Führer’s real New Order, earthly reflection of Thy merciless cosmic Harmony! Put Thy impersonal wisdom into us, that nee may better understand that towards which he has striven; that towards which we should strive in his name and for the love of him, who is Thee, and for the love of Thee, Who hast come back in human garb, in him, and shinest in him forever! Help me to be a worthier instrument in Thy power; a more efficient source of inspiration and edification to my brothers in Faith; a better Aryan and a better National Socialist!”
I took off my gold earrings in the shape of Swastikas; my gold brooch in the shape of the Disk with rays ending in hands — Aton; Heat that is Light; Light that is Heat; — my last precious possessions, and put them upon the stone stand: “Help me to remember that they are not mine, but my Führer’s and his people’s,” said I; “help me to remember that nothing which I have or shall ever have belongs to me, but to Him and to them — nothing, including my body, my life, my further lives, if any. May I, if necessary, give these as readily as I gave the rest of all I had!”
And lifting my arm a little higher, I uttered three times the sacred Sanskrit Words that I had once repeated, when seeking the way of detachment, in the depth of despair: “Aum Shivayam! Aum Rudrayam!” And then, after a short silence, I added, binding the new to the immemorial — the modern German expression of the eternal Aryan Faith, to its ancient Indian one, —: “Heil Hitler!”
My earrings lay, one on each side of the gold brooch. I put the one that was on the right on the left, and the one that was on the left, on the right. And I repeated the old and the new Words.
Then I changed once more the position of the two gold Swastikas and put one above, the other below the gold Sun with rays ending in hands. And for the third time, I uttered the Sanskrit and the German Words, as though I were, symbolically, laying the spiritual foundations of the extended Greater Reich, that will comprise all Aryandom.
I then drew from my bag the last copy I had of the leaflets I had distributed in Germany in 1948 and 1949; a printed copy of my Gold in the Furnace and Defiance, a typed copy of my prose poems Forever and Ever, a typed copy of the beginning of The Lightning and the Sun, and the manuscript of this present book: the main things I had written in direct connection with our struggle after the war. And again I stretched out my arm and prayed: “Help me to contribute efficiently and lastingly to the resurrection, triumph and expansion, and definitive establishment of National Socialism in Germany, in the West, in the world, wherever there are people of Aryan blood. Help me to hasten the coming of the time when the proud Swastika Flag shall again wave above these sacred Rocks; when these Rocks will be honoured as Germany’s spiritual centre, and Germany, — the modern Saviour’s Fatherland, — as the Holy Land of Nordic mankind, sacred to all Aryans! Help me to achieve this through all I think and feel; through all I say or refrain from saying; through all I do or shall do; through all I wrote; all I am writing; all I shall ever write; through all that which I am!”
For a minute, I pictured to myself the folds of the red-white-and-black Swastika Banner fluttering above my head, — above the Rocks of the Sun and the Teutoburg Forest, in the place of the resplendent Irminsul of old. Maybe, the Führer had been betrayed, the Party slandered, and Germany defeated, and the Flag of glory insulted and trampled in the mud. But the old Cross of the Stone Age, — the Wheel of the Sun, older than the Irminsul itself, — stands above victory and defeat. One day, — I hoped — it would bind the present and future Aryan faith in Blood and Soil to the older aspects of the eternal cosmic Religion, and — I also hoped, — unite all Aryans into one Greater Reich, under the supremacy of the best.
“Oh, may I play a part in this awakening of the collective
Self of my race, for which I have been struggling thousands of years!” cried I, forgetting my tiny insignificant self of yesterday and of today and my tiny role in this great struggle, in the fleeting, but intense awareness of a continuity of purpose and of effort through hundreds of lives, the succession of which no man can prove, but of which I felt, for a while, sure. “Unseen Powers of Light, Whose effulgence still abides upon this high place and in every corner of these sacred Rocks; and in this historic Forest, and in this blessed Land — my Leader’s Fatherland, — help me to link this worldwide awakening of the Aryan with my Leader’s teaching and with his struggle, and with his and his people’s sacrifice; help me to link it with the history of his people: with their role as the vanguard of Western Aryandom in its age-long conflict with the dark Forces!
“And you, warriors who died defending these Rocks of the Sun against Charlemagne’s crusaders to Germany; and you who, survived the destruction of the old Germanic faith, and lived and died in despair, which is a thousand times worse than death, march in spirit within our ranks — next to Leo Schlageter and Horst Wessel, next to Holzweber and Planetta, and the martyrs of Munich and of Nuremberg; next to all our martyrs! Live in me; inspire me, that I might contribute to the foundation and growth of the new Faith in the light of which the world will see our Hitler as he is — as Him Who comes back, — and render him divine honours. Help me to give him the North and the South; the world, from pole to pole! Heil Hitler!”
Tears filled my eyes. And an icy thrill ran along my spine: a strange and almost frightening feeling of grandeur in spite of personal nothingness; the feeling that the invisible Gods Who preside over Germany’s destiny had accepted my dedication, just as the old fighter, Herr B. — my superior, — had accepted it nearly six months before, and that it was no longer I who lived, but Adolf Hitler — and, behind him, cosmic Truth, — who lived in me; Adolf Hitler, the Saviour of the best and the Ruler of the future; and cosmic Truth, older than the Sun and Stars, the divine breath of his Movement and, beyond the glory and tragedy of his political career, the Essence of his eternal wisdom.
Within my heart, I recalled our Führer’s words characterising
the National Socialist doctrine: . . . “not a new election slogan, but a new vision of the Universe”1 — and subsequently, a new Way of life. And I knew I was, myself, a living illustration of their accuracy.
I remained another two or three hours in meditation upon that cherished idea of National Socialism not merely as a political system, but as a faith; and as a political system only inasmuch as “politics,” — an aspect of life, — are ruled by the faith that rules a man’s or a nation’s life.
No tourists came to disturb me in my thoughts. It was raining. But I did not notice it till afterwards.
At last, stretching out my right arm once more, I repeated from the bottom of my heart the blessed spell-like Syllables of love and pride — the now forbidden cry of the new Faith: — “Heil Hitler!”
And I walked across the wet pavement, over the bridge and down the steps, — back to normal life, — filled with a new consciousness: a super-personal consciousness of silent, unsuspected, and yet irresistible power; of power of the nature of that of the unbending Laws which rule the Dance of life and death in starry space.
Further words of Mein Kampf came to my memory, bringing me the promise of final victory — the vision of the Greater Reich of the future in spite of all the efforts of our enemies to keep us down: “. . . for his higher being, man has to thank not the ideas of a few crazy ideologues, but the recognition and merciless application of iron natural Laws . . .”2 . . . “A State which, in an age of racial contamination, devotes itself to the forwarding of its best racial elements, is bound to become, in course of time, the master of the world.”3
Ended in Emsdetten-in-Westfalen (Germany)
on the 6th of February, 1954.
1 A new Weltanschauung. Mein Kampf, edit. 1939, p. 243.
2 Mein Kampf, edit. 1939, p. 316 (Chapter 11).
3 Mein Kampf, edit. 1939, p. 782 (Epilogue).