From Correspondence, October 1979
Marvellous, always new and fresh letters from you. Now this last one, response to the US Sufi leader camp. I am proud to remind you that I already wrote the same to him of the possibility of him coming there — and warning him not to come barging in with a US type high-paid “seminar”. What you wrote had to be written and is good — as far as describing your own situation. It is entirely unfair to the American nation, who, as a whole, is not the least bit like this “announcement” from Sufi headquarters. We call it “Madison avenue” here — referring to the high-hatted but very few advertising agencies and PR people on Madison avenue in New York. The Sufi HQ people, of course, are not really like that. They are frightened, clumsy chickens, afraid to lose the flimsy organization and the buildings they have surprisingly managed to collect, not knowing where to turn, what to do. They are so frightened I don’t even know if I dare mention the whole matter when I see him. Mentioning this might jeopardize everything else I have to talk about. . .
Incidentally, you were also portraying the Canadian nation a bit one-trackish. I have seen as much money and pomp in some Canada quarters as in the US. All countries have the beauty of spirituality, the ugliness of greed and phonies — and the pitiable traits of fear and tremor.
Remember, though, that nothing can really be gained from organizations. You don’t need to formally belong to them to get ahead — and gain worldly results. You have nothing to fear from what nitwits in New York “prescribe”. You continue to be their heroic friends and supporters — ignoring their pleas and their letters pronouncing your non-affiliation. The formal affiliation means nothing. Only the heart means — and it can operate completely independently.
Gathas? The books have it all. Your mind and heart have more. But you are quite right in writing your letter and making a mock effort to correct the wrongs. . . Humbly may I suggest that you either rewrite your letter to exclude the useless attack on “US character” and also the untrue praise of everything Canadian — or if your letter has gone out already, write a corrective letter to the recipients. This is important. This is not the time for making clumsy attacks on nations or clumsy praise in the form of attacks on others by or for another nation. Of course, this is only my humble view. You are the masters of this matter and the decision makers.
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