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War Letters From The Living Dead Man




The Return of "X"
II. A Dweller on the Threshold
III. An Assurance
IV. The Way of Understanding
V. Astral Monsters
VI. The Archduke
VII. The "Chosen People"
VIII. Spectres of the Congo
IX. Unseen Guardians
X. One Day as a Thousand Years
XI. Many Tongues
XII. The Beautiful Being
XIII. The Body of Humanity
XIV. The Foeman Within
XV. Listening in Brussels
XVI. The Sixth Race
XVII. An American on Guard
XVIII. A Master of Compassion
XIX. The Rose-Veiled Stranger
XX. Above the Battlefields
XXI. A Soul in Purgatory
XXII. Peace Propaganda
XXIII. The Mystery of Desire
XXIV. The Scales of Justice
XXV. For Love's Sake
XXVI. A Master of Mind
XXVII. Invisible Enemies
XXVIII. The Glory of War
XXIX. A Friend of "X"
XXX. The Rose and the Cross
XXXI. A Serbian Magician
XXXII. Judas and Typhon
XXXIII. Crowns of Straw
XXXIV. The Sylph and the Father
XXXV. Behind the Dark Veil
XXXVI. The "Lusitania"
XXXVII. Veiled Prophecies
XXXVIII. Advice to a Scribe
XXXIX. One of These Little Ones
XL. The Height and the Depth
XLI. A Conclave of Masters
XLII. A Lesson in the Kabala
XLIII. The Second Coming
XLIV. Poison Gases
XLV. The Superman
XLVI. The Entering Wedge
XLVII. The New Brotherhood
XLVIII. In the Crucible
XLIX. Black Magic in America
L. Things to Remember






            The nations began to declare war on one another. I stood with twenty others for hours in the Palace at Potsdam, trying by the silent pressure of will to reduce the pressure of the war-will which surged in the German nation toward its Emperor. And they say that Germany did not want war!
            “Der Tag” seemed near, and war seemed to mean triumph.
            It is a commonplace to say now that Germany believed that England could not go to war. And had England not gone to war, the issue would have been settled before the date of this writing. The German navy would have met the French in battle and would have worsted it.
            It would be well for you to cease shrinking when I say what does not please you. I state what I know; you merely write down what I say.

            I and twenty others centred the force of our will in Potsdam and in the Wilhelmstrasse. Not that we did not know what the issue would be. We knew. This war was written in the stars. But as the soldier does his duty though he knows that he will lose the day, so we stood our ground against the war devils.
            The greatest of the Masters did not stand there with us, and I do not know where he was. Probably on some business that we might not have understood. Perhaps holding back worse forces from the outer stars.
            No, that is not a dream, though it is only a supposition. There is evil as well as good in the outer stars.
            Had it not been for the restraining influence of those who watched up here, many of the foreigners in Germany at that time would have been torn limb from limb.
            What do you know of war-madness, hate-madness? Were you capable of feeling it in your present personality, you could not write for me now, while those whom you love and respect are nearly all on one side of a war not yet finished. You may grasp hate intellectually, you may dramatize it; but you do not feel it, though you have suffered from its effects.

            The worst in the German heart is very bad—though I tell you not to hate them. The worst in all people is very bad, but the German is the greatest bully on the planet. The cruel Oriental races have a restraint which has grown in them through ages of culture; the German knows only the restraint of the German law, he respects only the restraint of the German law.
            He has no sense of right and wrong in the abstract, though he is often extremely sensitive as to what is right and wrong for him in his relation to those near him, his kinsmen and fellow-citizens. But those outside the race-group are outside his code of honor, however polished he may be.
            I am speaking now of the race, not of the few who have by long residence abroad absorbed somewhat of world-brotherhood and the more delicate sensibilities of international relations.
            And mark this also: the German can love as thoroughly as he can hate; but he can love only his own, something which is an extension of himself, a secondary ego, the me in another form. A German may love a foreign wife, if he can Germanize her. A German may love a foreign friend, if that friend does not stand in the way of something he wants for himself.

            I am not referring to those sudden outpourings of emotion to which those emotional people are subject. I am not referring to their surface kindliness, which is the overflow of emotion.
            And still I say, love these unlovable people, love them so much that they will be detached from their race-centre and will flow out in melting response to everything that is not German. The world can never really soften the German shell by throwing stones against it. When they break down in this war, they will not be any more essentially lovable because they are weaker. Love them by trying to understand them.
            It will take decades for the arrogant and self-exalting German to see that there is anything outside that may be superior to what is inside his shell.
            He respects only might. He must be conquered by might. From his enforced respect of a superior might he may be led gradually to see the superior right of that gentleness which does not use its might to coerce him when further coercion is unnecessary.

            I have stood in German households since the war began, I have entered into and for the time being have become German men and German women, and I understand them and love them. I even admire them, for their devotion to their own is immense. Once let that strength go out in real brotherhood to all mankind, and these people would be truly great. Is it possible? All things are possible to the human soul, and these people are very human.
            The defect is in their vaunted education. They teach themselves that they are the chosen people. When they learn that they are not the chosen people in war, the very force of the shock may upset the pillar of egotism that stands upright in the centre of the German soul. The world should not let that pillar fall with a crash, but softly ease the blow—not too softly, lest mercy be mistaken for war-weariness.
            The World-Mother has a hard and erring child. It has to be punished, but not refused a seat at the family table.

            I have said these things to you because, if you do not shrink, I have things to tell you in my next letter which will need fortitude for you to receive, fortitude and charity, whose other name is love.

March 24.

Letter VIII.