by Victor and Victoria Trimondi

extracted from 'The Shadow of the Dalai Lama'

from TheShadowOfTheDalaiLama Website

The spread of the Shambhala myth and the Kalachakra Tantra in the West has a history of its own.


It does definitely not first begin with the expulsion of the lamas from Tibet (in 1959) and their diaspora across the whole world, but rather commences at the beginning of the twentieth century in Russia with the religious political activity of an ethnic Buriat by the name of Agvan Dorjiev.

The Shambhala missionary Agvan Dorjiev

Even in his youth, Agvan Dorjiev (1854–1938), who trained as a monk in Tibet, was already a very promising individual. For this reason he was as a young man entrusted with caring for the Thirteenth Dalai Lama. The duties of the Buriat included among other things the ritual cleansing of the body and bedroom of the god-king, which implies quite an intimate degree of contact.


Later he was to be at times the closest political adviser of His Holiness.

Dorjiev was convinced that the union of Tibet with Russia would provide the Highlands with an extremely favorable future, and was likewise able to convince the hierarch upon the Lion Throne of the merits of his political vision for a number of years. He thus advanced to the post of Tibetan envoy in St. Petersburg and at the Russian court. His work in the capital was extremely active and varied.


In 1898 he had his first audience with Tsar Nicholas II, which was supposed to be followed by others. The Russian government was opening up with greater tolerance towards the Asian minorities among whom the Buriats were also to be counted, and was attempting to integrate them more into the Empire whilst still respecting their religious and cultural autonomy, instead of missionizing them as they had still done at the outset of the 19th century.

Even as a boy, Nicholas II had been fascinated by Tibet and the “yellow pontiff” from Lhasa. The famous explorer, Nikolai Przhevalsky, introduced the 13-year-old Tsarevitch to the history and geopolitics of Central Asia. Przhevalsky described the Dalai Lama as a "powerful Oriental pope with dominion over some 250 million Asiatic souls” and believed that a Russian influence in Tibet would lead to control of the entire continent and that this must be the first goal of Tsarist foreign policy (Schimmelpennink, 1994, p. 16).


Prince Esper Esperovich Ukhtomsky, influential at court and deeply impressed by the Buddhist teachings, also dreamed of a greater Asian Empire under the leadership of the “White Tsars”.

Since the end of the 19th century Buddhism had become a real fashion among the Russian high society, comparable only to what is currently happening in Hollywood, where more and more stars profess to the doctrine of the Dalai Lama. It was considered stylish to appeal to Russia’s Asiatic inheritance and to invoke the Mongolian blood which flowed in the veins of every Russian with emotional phrases.


The poet, Vladimir Solovjov declaimed,

“Pan-Mongolism — this word: barbaric, yes! Yet a sweet sound”

(Block, n.d., p. 247).

Agvan Dorjiev

The mysto-political influences upon the court of the Tsar of the naïve demonic village magician, Rasputin, are common knowledge. Yet the power-political intrigues of an intelligent Asian doctor by the name of Peter Badmajev ought to have been of far greater consequence.


Like Dorjiev, whom he knew well, he was a Buriat and originally a Buddhist, but he had then converted to Russian Orthodox. His change of faith was never really bought by those around him, who frequented him above all as a mighty shaman that was “supposed to be initiated into all the secrets of Asia” (Golowin, 1977, p. 219).

Badmajev was head of the most famous private hospital in St. Petersburg. There the cabinet lists for the respective members of government were put together under his direction.


R. Fülöp-Miller has vividly described the doctor’s power-political activities:

“In the course of time medicine and politics, ministerial appointments and 'lotus essences' became more and more mingled, and a fantastic political magic character arose, which emanated from Badmajev’s sanatorium and determined the fate of all Russia. The miracle-working doctor owed this influence especially to his successful medical-political treatment of the Tsar. ...


Badmajev’s mixtures, potions, and powders brewed from mysterious herbs from the steppes served not just to remedy patient’s metabolic disturbances; anyone who took these medicaments ensured himself an important office in the state at the same time”

(Fülöp-Miller, 1927, pp. 112, 148).

For this “wise and crafty Asian” too, the guiding idea was the establishment of an Asian empire with the “White Tsar” at its helm.

In this overheated pro-Asian climate, Dorjiev believed, probably somewhat rashly, that the Tsar had a genuine personal interest in being initiated into the secrets of Buddhism. The Buriat’s goal was to establish a mchod-yon relationship between Nicholas II and the god-king from Lhasa, that is, Russian state patronage of Lamaism.


Hence a trip to Russia by the Dalai Lama was prepared which, however, never eventuated.

Bolshevik Buddhism

One would think that Dorjiev had a compassionate heart for the tragic fate of the Tsarist family. At least, Nicholas II had supported him and the Thirteenth Dalai Lama had even declared the Russian heir to the throne to be a Bodhisattva because a number of attempts to give him a Christian baptism mysteriously failed.


At Dorjiev’s behest, pictures of the Romanovs adorned the Buddhist temple in St. Petersburg.

Hence, it is extremely surprising that the Buriat greeted the Russian October Revolution and the seizure of power by the Bolsheviks with great emotion. What stood behind this about-face, a change of attitude or understandable opportunism? More likely the former, then at the outset of the twenties Dorjiev, along with many famous Russian orientalists, was convinced that Communism and Buddhism were compatible.


He publicly proclaimed that the teaching of Shakyamuni was an “atheistic religion” and that it would be wrong to describe it as “unscientific”. Men in his immediate neighborhood even went so far as to celebrate the historical Buddha as the original founder of Communism and to glorify Lenin as an incarnation of the Enlightened One. There are reliable rumors that Dorjiev and Lenin had met.

Initially the Bolsheviks appreciated such currying of favor and made use of it to win Buddhist Russians over to their ideas. Already in 1919, the second year of the Revolution, an exhibition of Buddhist art was permitted and encouraged amidst extreme social turmoil. The teachings of Shakyamuni lived through a golden era, lectures about the Sutras were held, numerous Buddhist books were published, contacts were established with Mongolian and Tibetan scholars.


Even the ideas of pan-Mongolism were reawakened and people began to dream of blood-filled scenes. In the same year, in his famous poem of hate Die Skythen [The Scythians], Alexander Block prophesied the fall of Europe through the combined assault of the Russians and the Mongolians.


In it we can read that,

We shall see through the slits of our eyes
How the Huns fight over your flesh,
How your cities collapse
And your horses graze between the ruins.
(Block, n.d., p. 249)

Even the Soviet Union’s highest-ranking cultural official of the time, Anatoli Vassilievich Lunacharski, praised Asia as a pure source of inexhaustible reserves of strength:

“We need the Revolution to toss aside the power of the bourgeoisie and the power of rationality at the same time so as to regain the great power of elementary life, so as to dissolve the world in the real music of intense being. We respect and honor Asia as an area which until now draws its life energy from exactly these right sources and which is not poisoned by European reason”.

(Trotzkij, 1968, p. 55).

Yet the Buddhist, pan-Asian El Dorado of Leningrad transformed itself in 1929 into a hell, as the Stalinist secret service began with a campaign to eradicate all religious currents. Some years later Dorjiev was arrested as a counterrevolutionary and then put on trial for treason and terrorism.


On January 29, 1938 the “friend of the Dalai Lama” died in a prison hospital.

The Kalachakra temple in St. Petersburg

There is a simple reason for Dorjiev’s enthusiasm for Russia. He was convinced that the Kalachakra system and the Shambhala myth had their origins in the Empire of the Tsar and would return via it. In 1901 the Buriat had received initiations into the Time Tantra from the Ninth Panchen Lama which were supposed to have been of central significance for his future vision.


Ekai Kawaguchi, a Buddhist monk from Japan who visited Tibet at the turn of the last century, claims to have heard of a pamphlet in which Dorjiev wrote:

“Shambhala was Russia. The Emperor, moreover, was an incarnation of Tsongkhapa, and would sooner or later subdue the whole world and found a gigantic Buddhist empire”

(Snelling, 1993, p. 79).

Although it is not certain whether the lama really did write this document, it fits in with his religious-political ideas.


Additionally, the historians are agreed:

“In my opinion,” W.A. Unkrig writes, “the religiously-based purpose of Agvan Dorjiev was the foundation of a Lamaist-oriented kingdom of the Tibetans and Mongols as a theocracy under the Dalai Lama ... [and] under the protection of Tsarist Russia ... In addition, among the Lamaists there existed the religiously grounded hope for help from a ‘Messianic Kingdom’ in the North ... called 'Northern Shambhala’”

(quoted by Snelling, 1993, p. 79).

At the center of Dorjiev’s activities in Russia stood the construction of a three-dimensional mandala — the Buddhist temple in St. Petersburg. The shrine was dedicated to the Kalachakra deity. The Dalai Lama’s envoy succeeded in bringing together a respectable number of prominent Russians who approved of and supported the project. The architects came from the West.


A painter by the name of Nicholas Roerich, who later became a fanatic propagandist for Kalachakra doctrine, produced the designs for the stained-glass windows. Work commenced in 1909. In the central hall various main gods from the Tibetan pantheon were represented with statues and pictures, including among others Dorjiev’s wrathful initiation deity, Vajrabhairava.


Regarding the décor, it is perhaps also of interest that there was a swastika motif which the Bolsheviks knocked out during the Second World War. There was sufficient room for several lamas, who looked after the ritual life, to live on the grounds. Dorjiev had originally intended to triple the staffing and to construct not just a temple but also a whole monastery. This was prevented, however, by the intervention of the Russian Orthodox Church.

The inauguration took place in 1915, an important social event with numerous figures from public life and the official representatives of various Asian countries.


The Dalai Lama sent a powerful delegation,

“to represent the Buddhist Papacy and assist the Tibetan Envoy Dorjiev”

(Snelling, 1993, p. 159).

Nicholas II had already viewed the Kalachakra temple privately together with members of his family several days before the official occasion.

Officially, the shrine was declared to be a place for the needs of the Buriat and Kalmyk minorities in the capital. With regard to its occult functions it was undoubtedly a tantric mandala with which the Kalachakra system was to be transplanted into the West. Then, as we have already explained, from the lamas’ traditional point of view founding a temple is seen as an act of spiritual occupation of a territory.


The legends about the construction of first Buddhist monastery (Samye) on Tibetan soil show that it is a matter of a symbolic deed with which the victory of Buddhism over the native gods (or demons) is celebrated. Such sacred buildings as the Kalachakra temple in St. Petersburg are cosmograms which are — in their own way of seeing things — employed by the lamas as magic seals in order to spiritually subjugate countries and peoples.


It is in this sense that the Italian, Fosco Maraini, has also described the monasteries in his poetic travelogue about Tibet as,

“factories of a holy technology or laboratories of spiritual science”

(Maraini, 1952, p. 172).

In our opinion this approximates very closely the Lamaist self-concept. Perhaps it is also the reason why the Bolsheviks later housed an evolutionary technology laboratory in the confiscated Kalachakra shrine of St. Petersburg and performed genetic experiments before the eyes of the tantric terror gods.

The temple was first returned to the Buddhists in June 1991. In the same year, a few days before his own death, the English expert on Buddhism, John Snelling, completed his biography of the god-king’s Buriat envoy.


In it he poses the following possibility:

“Who knows then but what I call Dorjiev's Shambhala Project for a great Buddhist confederation stretching from Tibet to Siberia, but now with connections across to Western Europe and even internationally, may well become a very real possibility”

(Snelling, 1993, xii).

Here, Snelling can only mean the explosive spread of Tantric Buddhism across the whole world.

If we take account of the changes that time brings with it, then today the Kalachakra temple in Petersburg would be comparable with the Tibet House in New York. Both institutions function(ed) as semi-occult centers outwardly disguised as cultural institutions. In both instances the spread of the Kalachakra idea is/was central as well.


But there is also a much closer connection: Robert Alexander Farrar Thurman, the founder and current leader of the Tibet House, went to Dharamsala at the beginning of the sixties. There he was ordained by the Dalai Lama in person. Subsequently, the Kalmyk, Geshe Wangyal (1901-1983), was appointed to teach the American, who today proclaims that he shall experience the Buddhization of the USA in this lifetime.


Thurman thus received his tantric initiations from Wangyal.

This guru lineage establishes a direct connection to Agvan Dorjiev. Namely, that as a 19-year-old novice Lama Wangyal accompanied the Buriat to St. Petersburg and was initiated by him. Thus, Robert Thurman’s “line guru” is, via Wangyal, the old master Dorjiev. Dorjiev — Wangyal — Thurman form a chain of initiations.


From a tantric viewpoint the spirit of the master live on in the figure of the pupil. It can thus be assumed that as Dorjiev’s “successor” Thurman represents an emanation of the extremely aggressive protective deity, Vajrabhairava, who had incarnated himself in the Buriat. At any rate, Thurman has to be associated with Dorjiev’s global Shambhala utopia.


His close interconnection with the Kalachakra Tantra is additionally a result of his spending several months in Dharamsala under the supervision of Namgyal monks, who are specialized in the time doctrine.

Madame Blavatsky and the Shambhala myth


Yet, as the real pioneering deed in the spread of the Shambhala myth in the West we have to present the life and work of a woman. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (1831–1891), the influential founder of Theosophy, possibly contributed more to the globalization of a warlike Buddhism than she was aware of.


The noble-born Russian is supposed to have already been a gifted medium as a child. After an adventurous life (among other things she worked as a rider in a circus) her spiritual career as such began in the 1870s in the USA. At first she tried her hand at all kinds of spiritualist séances. Then she wrote her first occult book, later world famous, Isis Unveiled (first published in 1875).


As the title reveals, at this stage she oriented herself to secret Egyptian teachings. There is almost no trace of Buddhist thought to be found in this work. In 1879 together with her most loyal follower, Colonel Henry Steele Olcott, Blavatsky made a journey to Bombay and to the teachings of Buddha Gautama. There too, the doctrine of the “great White Brotherhood of Tibet” and the mysterious spiritual masters who determine the fate of humanity was invented, or rather, in Blavatsky’s terms, “received” from the higher realms.

Tibet, which, her own claims to the contrary, she had probably never visited, was a grand obsession for the occultist. She liked to describe her own facial characteristics as “Kalmyk-Buddhist-Tatar”. Even though her esoteric system is syncretized out of all religions, since her work on the Secret Doctrine Tibetan/Tantric Buddhism takes pride of place among them.

A detailed comparison of the later work of the Theosophist with the Shambhala myth and the Kalachakra Tantra would reveal astounding similarities. Admittedly she only knew the Time Tantra from the brief comments of the first western Tibetologist, the Hungarian, Csoma de Körös, but her writings are permeated by the same spirit which also animates the “Highest Tantra of all”.


The mystic Secret Book of Dzyan, which the Russian claimed to have “received” from a Tibetan master and which she wrote her Secret Doctrine as a commentary upon, is central to her doctrine. It is supposed to be the first volume of the 21 Books of Kiu te, in which all the esoteric doctrines of our universe are encoded according to Blavatsky.


What are we dealing with here?


The historian David Reigle suspects that by the mysterious Books of Kiu te she means the tantra section of the Tibetan Tanjur and Kanjur, the officially codified Tibetan collections of Buddhist doctrinal writings, about which only little was known at the time. But this is not certain. There is also supposed to be a Tibetan tradition which claims that the Books of Kiu te were all to be found in the kingdom of Shambhala (Reigle, 1983, p. 3). Following such opinions Madame Blavatsky’s secret directions would have been drawn directly from the kingdom.

In her philosophy the ADI BUDDHA system is of central importance, and likewise the fivefold group of the Dhyani (or meditation) Buddhas and the glorification of Amitabha as the supreme god of light, whom she compares with the “Ancient of Days” of the Jewish Cabala. Astutely, she recognizes the Chinese goddess Guanyin as the “genius of water” (Spierenburg, 1991, p. 13).


But as “mother, wife, and daughter” she is subordinate to the “First Word”, the Tibetan fire god Avalokiteshvara. The result is — as in the Kalachakra Tantra — an obsessive solar and fire cult. Her fire worship exhibits an original development in the principal deity of our age, Fohat by name. Among other things he is said to emanate in all forms of electricity.

Madame Blavatsky was not informed about the sexual magic practices in the tantras. She herself supported sexual abstinence as “occult hygiene of mind and body” (Meade, 1987, p. 398).


She claimed to be a virgin all her life, but a report from her doctors reveals this was not the truth.

“To Hades with the sex love!”, she cursed, “It is a beastly appetite that should be starved into submission”

(Symonds, 1959, p. 64).

When the sexes first appeared — we learn from the Secret Book of Dzyan — they brought disaster to the world.


The decline into the material began with a sexual indiscretion of the gods:

“They took wives fair to look upon. Wives from the mindless, the narrow-headed. … Then the third eye acted no longer”

(Blavatsky, 1888, vol. 2, p. 13).

Blavatsky was probably convinced that her female body was being borrowed by a male Tibetan yogi. At any rate her closest co-worker, Henry Steele Olcott, who so admired her works that he could not believe they could be the work of a woman, suspected this.


Hence, thinking of Madame, he asked an Indian guru,

“But can the atman [higher self] of a yogi be transferred into the body of a woman?”.

The Indian replied,

“He can clothe his soul in her physical form with as much ease as he can put on a woman's dress. In every physical aspect and relation he would then be like a woman; internally he would remain himself”

(Symonds, 1959, p. 142).

As in the Kalachakra Tantra, androgyny is also considered the supreme goal along the path to enlightenment in Theosophy. The gods are simultaneously “male-female”. Their bisexuality is concentrated in the figure of Avalokiteshvara, the cosmic Adam.

Through her equation of the ADI BUDDHA with the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara Madame Blavatsky clears the way for a cosmologization of the latter’s earthly embodiment, the Dalai Lama. For her, the Bodhisattva is “the powerful and all-seeing”, the “savior of humanity” and we learn that as “the most perfect Buddha” he will incarnate in the Dalai Lama or the Panchen Lama in order to redeem the whole world (Blavatsky, 1888, vol. 2, p. 178).

As in the Shambhala myth, the Russian presumes that a secret world government exists, whose members, the Mahatmas, were brought together in an esoteric society in the 14th century by the founder of the Gelugpa order, Tsongkhapa. The “White Brotherhood”, as this secret federation is known, still exists in Tibet, even if hidden from view, and influences the fate of humanity. It consists of superhumans who watch over the evolution of the citizens of the earth.

Likewise, the catastrophic destruction of the old eon and the creation of a new paradisiacal realm are part of the Theosophical world view. Here, Blavatsky quotes the same Indian source from which the Kalachakra Tantra is also nourished, the Vishnu Purana.


There it says of the doomsday ruler that,

“He ... shall descend on Earth as an outstanding Brahman from Shambhala ... endowed with the eight superhuman faculties. Through his irresistible power he will ... destroy all whose hearts have been relinquished to evil. He will re-establish righteousness on earth”

(Blavatsky, 1888, vol. 1, p. 378).

Of course, the Russian was able to read much into the Tibetan Buddhist doctrine, since in her time only a few of the original texts had been translated into a western language. But it is definitely wrong to dismiss her numerous theses as pure fantasy, as her speculative world brings her closer to the imagination and occult ambience of Lamaism than some philologically accurate translations of Sanskrit writings.


With an unerring instinct and a visionary mastery she discovered many of the ideas and forces which are at work in the tantric teachings. In that she attained these insights more through intuition and mediumism than through scientific research, she can be regarded as the semi-aware instrument of a Buddhist-Tibetan world conquest.


At any rate, of all the western “believers in Tibet” she contributed the most to the spread of the idea of the Land of Snows as a unfathomable mystery. Without the occult veil which Madame Blavatsky cast over Tibet and its clergy, Tantric Buddhism would only be half as attractive in the West.


The Fourteenth Dalai Lama is also aware of the great importance of such female allies and has hence frequently praised Blavatsky’s pioneering work.

Nicholas Roerich and the Kalachakra Tantra

A further two individuals who won the most respect for the Shambhala myth in the West before the flight of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, were also Russians, Nicholas Roerich (1874–1947) and his wife Helena Ivanovna (1879–1955). Roerich was a lifelong painter, influenced by the late art nouveau movement. He believed himself to be a reincarnation of Leonardo da Vinci.


Via his paintings, of which the majority featured Asian subjects, especially the mountainous landscapes of the Himalayas, he attempted to spread his religious message. He became interested in the ideas of Theosophy very early on; his wife translated Madame Blavatsky’s Secret Doctrine into Russian. The occultist led him to Buddhism, which was as we have said en vogue in the society of St. Petersburg at the time.


We have already briefly encountered him as a designer of Agvan Dorjiev’s Kalachakra temple. He was a close friend of the Buriat. In contrast, he hated Albert Grünwedel and regarded his work with deep mistrust. Between the years of 1924 and 1928 he wandered throughout Central Asia in search of the kingdom of Shambhala and subsequently published a travel diary.

In 1929 he began a very successful international action, the Roerich Banner of Peace and the Peace Pact, in which warring nations were supposed to commit themselves to protecting each other’s cultural assets from destruction. In the White House in 1935 the Roerich Pact was signed by 21 nations in the presence of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.


The migrant Russian succeeded in gaining constant access to circles of government, especially since the American agricultural minister, Henry Wallace, had adopted him as his guru. In 1947 the painter died in the Himalayan foothills of northern India.

With great zeal his wife continued her husband’s religious work up until the nineteen-fifties. Helena Ivanovna had from the outset actively participated in the formation of her husband’s ideas. Above all it is to her that we owe the numerous writings about Agni Yoga, the core of their mutual teachings. Roerich saw her as something like his shakti, and openly admitted to her contribution to the development of his vision.


He said in one statement that in his understanding of the world,

“the duty of the woman [is] to lead her male partner to the highest and most beautiful, and then to inspire him to open himself up to the higher world of the spirit and to import both valuable and beautiful aspects and ethical and social ones into life”

(Augustat, 1993, p. 50).

In his otherwise Indian Buddhist doctrinal system there was a revering of the “mother the world” that probably came from the Russian Orthodox Church.

Roerich first learned about the Kalachakra Tantra from Agvan Dorjiev during his work on the temple in St. Petersburg. Later, in Darjeeling, he had contact to the lama Ngawang Kalzang, who was also the teacher of the German, Lama Govinda, and was well versed in the time teachings. It is, however, most unlikely that Roerich received specific initiations from him or others, as his statements about the Kalachakra Tantra do not display a great deal of expertise. Perhaps it was precisely because of this that he saw in it the “happy news “ of the new eon to come.


He thus took up exactly the opposite position to his contemporary and acquaintance, Albert Grünwedel, who fanatically denounced the supreme Buddhist doctrinal system as a work of the devil.


“Kalachakra”, Roerich wrote,

“is the doctrine which is attributed to the numerous rulers of Shambhala. ... But in reality this doctrine is the great revelation brought to humankind ... by the lords of fire, the sons of reason who are and were the lords of Shambhala”

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, pp. 79, 81).

According to Roerich, the “fiery doctrine was covered in dust “ up until the twentieth century. (Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 122). But now the time had come in which it would spread all over the world.


As far as their essential core was concerned, all other religions were supposed to be included in the Time Tantra already:

“There are now so many teachers — so different and so hostile to one another; and nonetheless so many speak of the One, and the Kalachakra expresses this One”, the Russian has a Tibetan lama say.


“One of your priests once asked me: Are the Cabala and Shambhala not parts of the one teaching? He asked: Is the great Moses not a initiate of the same doctrine and a servant of its laws?”

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 78).

Agni yoga

For Roerich and his wife the Time Tantra contains a sparkling fire philosophy:

"This Teaching of Kalachakra, this utilization of the primary energy, has been called the Teaching of Fire. The Hindu peoples know the great Agni — ancient teaching though it be, it shall be the new teaching for the New Era. We must think of the future; and in the teaching of Kalachakra we know there lies all the material which may be applied for greatest use. […]


Kalachakra is the Teaching ascribed to the various Lords of Shambhala […]


But in reality this Teaching is the Great Revelation brought to humanity at the dawn of its conscious evolution in the third race of the fourth cycle of Earth by the Lords of Fire, the Sons of reason who were an are the Lords of Shambhala”

(Reigle, 1986, p. 38).

The interpretation which the Russian couple give to the Kalachakra Tantra in their numerous publications may be described without any exaggeration as a “pyromaniac obsession”. For them, fire becomes an autocratic primary substance that dissolves all in its flames. It functions as the sole creative universal principle.


All the other elements, out of the various admixtures of which the variety of life arises, disappear in the flaming process of creation:

“Do not seek the creative fire in the inertia of earth, in the seething waves of water, in the storms of the air.

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. I, p. 5).


Keep away from the other “elements” as “they do not love fire”

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. I, p. 7).


Only the “fiery world” brings blessing. Everyone carries the “sparks of the fiery world in their hearts”

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. II, p. 8).


This announces itself through “fiery signs”. “Rainbow flames” confirm the endeavors of the spirit. But only after a “baptism of fire” do all the righteous proceed with “flaming hearts” to the “empire of the fiery world” in which there are no shadows. They are welcomed by “fire angels”.

“The luminosity of every part of the fiery world generates an everlasting radiance”

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. II, p. 8).


The “song of fire sounds like the music of the spheres”

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. II, p. 8).


At the center of this world lies the “supreme fire”. Since the small and the large cosmos are one, the “fiery chakras” of the individual humans correspond to “the fiery structures of space”

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. I, p. 240).

This fire cult is supposed to be ancient and in the dim and distant past its shrines already stood in the Himalayas:

"Beyond the Kanchenjunga are old menhirs of the great sun cult. Beyond the Kanchenjunga is the birthplace of the sacred Swastika, sign of fire. Now in the day of Agni Yoga, the element of fire is again entering the spirit.”

(N. Roerich, 1985, p. 36, 37).

Madame Blavatsky’s above-mentioned god of electricity, Fohat, is also highly honored by the Roerichs.

The Roerichs’ fiery philosophy is put into practice through a particular sacred system which is called Agni Yoga. We were unable to determine the degree to which it follows the traditions of the already described Sadanga Yoga, practiced in the Kalachakra Tantra. Agni Yoga gives the impression that is conducted more ethically and with feelings than technically and with method. Admittedly the Roerich texts also talk of an unchaining of the kundalini (fire serpent), but nowhere is there discussion of sexual practices. In contrast, the philosophy of the two Russians requires strict abstinence and is antagonistic to everything erotic.

In 1920 the first Agni Yoga group was founded by the married couple.


The teachings, we learn, come from the East , indeed direct from the mythical kingdom:

"And Asia when she speaks the Blessed Shambhala, about Agni Yoga, about the Teaching of Flame, knows that the holy spirit of flame can unite the human hearts in a resplendent evolution”

(N. Roerich, 1985, p. 294).

Agni Yoga is supposed to join the great world religions together and serve as a common basis for them.

With great regret the Roerichs discover that the people do not listen to the “fiery tongues” that speak to them and want to initiate them into the secrets of the flames. They appropriated only the external appearances of the force of fire, like electricity, and otherwise feared the element. Yet the “space fire demands revelation” and whoever closes out its voice will perish in the flames (H. I. Roerich, 1980, p. 30).

Even if it is predicted in the cosmic plan, the destruction of all dark and ignorant powers does not happen by itself. It needs to be accelerated by the forces of good. It is a matter of victory and defeat, of heroic courage and sacrificial death.


Here is the moment in which the figure of the Shambhala warriors steps into the plan and battles with the inexorably advancing Evil which wants to extinguish Holy Flame:

“They shall come — the extinguishers; they shall come — the destroyers; they shall come — the powers of darkness. Corrosion that has already begun cannot be checked”

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. I, p. 124).


We hear from Helena Ivanova Roerich that,

“the term Shambhala truly is inseparably linked to fiery apparitions”.

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. I, p. 26).


“Fire signs introduce the epoch of Shambhala”, writes her spouse.

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 29).

It is not surprising that the Russian visionaries imagined the temple of Shambhala as an “alchemic laboratory”, then a fire oven, the athanor, also stood at the heart of the hermetic art, as western alchemy was known.

The couple consider Shambhala, the,

“city of happiness”, to be the “geographic residence or workplace of the brotherhood and seat of the interplanetary government in the trans-Himalaya”

(Augustat, 1993, p. 153).

In an official fundamental declaration of the two it says:

“The brotherhood is the spiritual union of highly developed entities from other planets or hierarchs, which as a cosmic institution is responsible to a higher institution for the entire evolution of the planet Earth. The interplanetary government consists of cosmic offices, which are occupied by the hierarch depending on the task and the age”

(Augustat, 1993, p. 149).

The Mahatmas, as these hierarchs are called in reference to Madame Blavatsky, have practical political power interests and are in direct contact with certain heads of state of our world, even if the ordinary mortals have no inkling of this.

Then it is impossible for normal humans to discover the main lodge of the secret society:

“How can one find the way to our laboratories? Without being called no-one will get to us”, Roerich proclaims.

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 9).

From there the Mahatmas coordinate an army of in part paid agents, who operate here on Earth in the name of the hidden kingdom. In the meantime the whole planet is covered by a net of members, assistants, contacts, and spies of the “international government” who are only waiting for the sign from their command center in Shambhala in order to step into the light and reveal themselves to humanity.

Likewise, the activities and resolutions of the “invisible international government” are all but impenetrable for an outsider. There is a law which states that each earthly nation will only be visited and “warned” by an envoy from Shambhala once in a century. An exception was probably made during the French Revolution, then “hierarchs” like the Comte de Saint Germain for example were extremely active at this troubled time.


Sadly he died in the year 1784,

“as a result of the undisciplined thinking of one of his assistants”.

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 117).

The dissolute life of his sadhaka (pupil), Cagliostro, was probably to blame for his not being able to participate in the great events of 1789 (the storming of the Bastille).

According to Roerich the members of the government of Shambhala have the ability to telepathically penetrate into the consciousness of the citizens of Earth without them realizing where particular ideas come from:

“Like arrows the transmissions of the community bore into the brains of humanity”

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 10).

Sometimes this takes place using apparatuses especially constructed for this purpose.


But they are not permitted to openly reveal their amazing magical abilities:

“Who can exist without food? Who can get by without sleep? Who is immune to heat and cold? Who can heal wounds? Truly only one who has studied Kalachakra”

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 77).

Tableau of N. Roerich:

“The command of Rigden-jyepo

For the Russian couple all the interventions of the governing yogi caste have just one goal, to prepare for the coming of the future Buddha Maitreya Morya or Rigden-jyepo, who shall then make all important decisions. According to the Roerichs both names are synonyms for the Rudra Chakrin, the “wrathful wheel turner” and doomsday ruler of the Kalachakra Tantra.


We thus await a fairytale oriental despot who cares about his subjects:

“Just like a diamond the light shines from the tower of Shambhala. He is there — Rigden-jyepo, untiring, ever watchful for the sake of humanity. His eyes never close. In his magic mirror he sees everything which happens on Earth. And the power of his thoughts penetrates through to the distant countries. ... His immeasurable riches lay waiting to help all the needy who offer to serve the cause of uprightness”

(Augustat, 1993, p. 11).

In passing, this doomsday emperor from Shambhala also reveals himself to be the western king of the Holy Grail, who holds the Holy Stone in his hands and who emigrated to Tibet under cover centuries ago. He is returning now, messengers announce him. True Knights of the Holy Grail are already incarnated on Earth, unrecognized .


The followers of the Roerichs even believe that their master himself protected the grail for a time and then returned it to Shambhala on his trip to Asia (Augustat, 1993, p. 114).

Apocalypse now

"Why do clouds gather when the Stone [the Grail] becomes dull? If the Stone becomes heavy, blood shall be spilled”, we learn mysteriously

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 88).

Behind this secret of the grail lies the apodictic statement known from almost all religions that total war, indeed the destruction of the world, is necessary in order to attain paradise. It is essential because in a good dualist cliché the “brotherhood of Good” is always counterpoised by the “brotherhood of Evil”. The “sons of darkness” have succeeded in severing humanity’s connection to the “higher world”, the “bright hierarchy”.


The forces of the depths lurk everywhere. Extreme caution is required since an ordinary mortal can barely distinguish the Evil from the Good, and further,

“the brotherhood of Evil attempts to imitate the Good’s method of action”.

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 126).

The final battle between Light and Darkness is -  the Roerichs say - presaged in the prophecies of the ancestors and the writings of the wise and must therefore take place. When natural disasters and crimes begin to pile up on Earth, the warriors from Shambhala will appear.


At the head of their army stands the Buddha Maitreya Morya, who,

“[combats] the prince of darkness himself. This struggle primarily takes place in the subtle spheres, whereas here [on earth] the ruler of Shambhala operates through his earthly warriors. He himself can only be seen under the most exceptional circumstances and would never appear in a crowd or among the curious. His appearance in fiery form would be disastrous for everybody and everything since his aura is loaded with energies of immense strength”.

(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 152).

It could be thought that this concerned an atomic bomb.


At any rate the battle will be conducted with a fire and explosive power which allows of comparison only to the atomic detonations in Hiroshima and Nagasaki:

Fiery the battle
with blazing torches,
Blood red the arrows
against the shining shield
(Schule der Lebensweisheit, 1990, p. 110)

Thus the armies of Shambhala storm forth.

"Space is filled with fire. The lightning of the Kalki avatar [Rudra Chakrin] — the preordained Maitreya — flashes upon the”.

(N. Roerich, 1985, p. 76).

Even if Kalki also goes by the epithet of “Lord of Compassion”, with his enemies he knows no mercy. Accompanied by Gesar, the mythic war hero of the Tibetans, he will storm forward mounted on a “white horse” and with a “comet-like, fiery sword” in his hand. Iron snakes will consume outer space with fire and frenzy (N. Roerich, 1988 p. 12).

“The Lord”, we read, “ strikes the people with fire. The same fiery element presides over the Day of Judgment. The purification of evil is performed by fire. Misfortunes are accompanied by fires”.

(H. I. Roerich, 1980, vol. I, 46).

Those who fight for Shambhala are the precursors of a new race who take control of the universe after Armageddon, after the,

“wheat has been separated from the chaff”.

(Augustat,1993, p. 98).

That is, to put it plainly, after all the inferior races have been eradicated in a holocaust.

Distribution in the west

As far as the fate of Tibet is concerned, the prophecies that Roerich made at the end of the twenties have in fact been fulfilled:

"We must accept it simply, as it is: the fact that the true teaching shall leave Tibet”, he has a lama announce, "and shall again appear in the South. In all countries, the covenants of Buddha shall be manifested. Really, great things are coming.”

(N. Roerich, 1985, p. 3)

In 1959 the Fourteenth Dalai Lama fled to India in the south and from this point in time onwards Tibetan Buddhism began to be spread all around the world.

Roerich and his wife saw themselves as agents of Shambhala who were supposed to make contact with those governing our world in order to warn them. They could at any rate appeal to a meeting with Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Their followers, however, believe that they were higher up in the hierarchy and that they were incarnated Mahatmas from the kingdom.

In the meantime the Roerich cult is most popular in Eastern Europe, where even before the fall of Communism it had penetrated the highest circles of government. The former Bulgarian Minister for Culture, Ludmilla Shiffkova, daughter of the Communist head of state Todor Shiffkov, was almost fanatically obsessed with the Agni master’s philosophy, so that she planned to introduce his teachings as part of the official school curriculum. For a whole year, cultural policy was conducted under the motto “N. K. Roerich — A cultural world citizen”, and she also organized several overseas exhibitions including works by her spiritual model as well.

Mikhail Gorbachev and his wife also supported numerous Roerich initiatives.


In Russia, the renaissance of the visionary painter was heralded for years in advance in elaborate symposia and exhibitions, in order to then fully blossom in the post-Communist era. In Alma Ata in October 1992, a major ecumenical event was organized by the international Roerich groups under the patronage of the president of Kazakhstan, at the geographical gateway, so to speak, behind which the land of Shambhala is widely believed to have once lain.


The Fourteenth Dalai Lama hesitated as to whether he ought to visit the Congress before deciding for scheduling reasons to send a telegram of greeting and a high-ranking representative.

The “Shambhala warrior” Chögyam Trungpa

In 1975 the Tibetan, Chögyam Trungpa (1940–1987), gathered several of his western pupils around himself and began to initiate them into a special spiritual discipline which he referred to as “Shambhala Training”. As a thirteen-month-old infant the Rinpoche from the Tibetan province of Kham was recognized as the tenth reincarnation of the Trungpa and accepted into the Kagyupa order.


In 1959 he had to flee from the Chinese. In 1963 he traveled to England and studied western philosophy and comparative religion at Oxford. Like no other Tibetan lama of his time, he understood how to make his own contribution to western civilization and culture. As a brilliant rhetorician, poet, and exotic free spirit he soon found numerous enthusiastic listeners and followers.


In 1967 he founded the first European tantric monastery in Scotland.


He gave it the name and the ground-plan of Samye Ling — in remembrance of the inaugural Tibetan shrine of the same name that Padmasambhava erected at the end of the 8th century despite resistance from countless demons.

In the opinion of Trungpa’s followers the demonic resistance was enormous in Scotland too.


In 1969 the young lama was the victim of a serious car accident which left him with a permanent limp. There is an ambiguous anecdote about this unfortunate event. Trungpa had reached a fork in the road in his car — to the right the road led in the direction of his monastery, the road to the left to the house in which his future wife lived. But he continued to drive straight ahead, plowing right into a shop selling magic and joke articles. Nevertheless, his meteoric rise had begun.


In 1970 he went to the United States.

Trungpa’s charming and initially anarchic manner, his humor and loyalty, his lack of respect and his laugh magnetically attracted many young people from the sixties generation. They believed that here the sweet but dangerous mixture of the exotic, social critique, free love, mind-expanding drugs, spirituality, political activism and self-discovery, which they had tasted in the revolutionary years of their youth, could be rediscovered.


Trungpa’s friendship with the radical beatnik poet Allan Ginsberg and other well-known American poets further enhanced his image as a “wild boy” from the roof of world. Even the first monastery he founded, Samye Ling, was renowned for the permissive “spiritual” parties which were held there and for the liberal sex and drug consumption.

But such excesses are only one side of things. Via the tantric law of inversion Trungpa intended to ultimately transform all this abandon (his own and that of his pupils) into discipline, goodness, and enlightened consciousness. The success of the guru was boundless. Many thousands cam to him as pilgrims. All over America and Europe spiritual centers (dharmadhatus) were created.


The Naropa Institute (near Denver, Colorado) was established as a private university, where alongside various Buddhist disciplines fine arts could also be studied.

The Shambhala warrior

Trungpa had told one of his pupils that during deep meditation he was able to espy Shambhala. He also said he had obtained the teachings for the “Shambhala training” directly from the kingdom.


The program consists of five levels:

  1. The art of being human

  2. Birth of the warrior

  3. Warrior in the world

  4. Awakened heart

  5. Open sky - The big bang

Anyone who had completed all the stages was considered a perfect “Shambhala warrior”. As a spiritual hero he is freed from the repulsiveness which the military trade otherwise implies.


His characteristics are kindness, an open heart, dignity, elegance, precision, modesty, attentiveness, fearlessness, equanimity, concentration, and confidence of victory. To be a warrior, one of Trungpa’s pupils writes, irrespective of whether as a man or a woman, means to live honestly, also in regard to fear, doubt, depression, and aggression which comes from outside. To be a warrior does not mean to conduct wars. Rather, to be a warrior means to have the courage to completely fathom oneself (Hayward, 1997, p. 11).


This subjectification of the warrior ethos brings with it that the weapons employed first of all represent purely psycho-physical states: controlled breathing, the strict stance, walking upright, clear sight.

The first basic demand of the training is, as in every tantric practice, a state of "egolessness”. This is of great importance in the Shambhala teachings, writes Trungpa. It is impossible to be a warrior if you have not experienced egolessness. Without egolessness, your consciousness is always filled with your ego, your personal plans and intentions (Hayward, 1997, p. 247).


Hence the individual ego is not changed through the exercises, rather the pupil tries solely to create an inner emptiness. Through this he allows himself to be transformed into a vessel into which the cult figures of the Tibetan pantheon can flow. According to Trungpa these are called dralas. Translated literally, that means “to climb out over the enemy” or in an further sense, energy, line of force, or “gods”.

The “empty” pupils thus become occupied by tantric deities. As potential “warriors” they naturally attract all possible forms of eager to fight dharmapalas (tutelary gods). Thus a wrathful Tibetan “protector of the faith” steps in to replace the sadhaka and his previous western identity. This personal transformation takes place through a ritual which in Trungpa’s Shambhala tradition is known as “calling the gods”.


The supernatural beings are summoned with spells and burning incense. When the thick, sweet-smelling white smoke ascends, the pupils sing a long incantation, which summons the dralas. At the end of the song the warrior pupils circle the smoke in a clockwise direction and constantly emit the victory call of the warrior (Hayward, 1997, p. 275).


This latter is “Lha Gyelo — victory to the gods” — the same call which the Dalai Lama cried out as he crossed the Tibetan border on his flight in 1959.

Trungpa was even more fascinated by the ancient national hero, Gesar, whose barbaric daredevilry we have already sketched in detail, than he was by the dharmapalas. The guru recommended the atavistic war hero to his followers as an example to imitate. Time and again he proudly indicated that his family belonged to the belligerent nomadic tribe of the “Mukpo”, from whose ranks Gesar also came. For this reason he ennobled his pupils as the “Mukpo family” and thus proclaimed them to be comrades-in-arms of Gesar.


The latter — said Trungpa — would return from Shambhala,

“leading an army to conquer the forces of darkness in the world”.

(Trungpa, 1986, p. 7).

But Trungpa did not just summon up Tibetan dharmapalas and heroes with his magic, rather he also invoked the deceased spirits of an international, on closer examination extremely problematic, warrior caste: the Japanese samurai, the North American plains Indians, the Jewish King David, and the British King Arthur with his round table — all archetypal leading figures who believed that justice could only be achieved with a sword in the hand, who were all absolutely ruthless in creating peace.


These “holy warriors” always stood opposed to the “barbarians” of another religion who had to be exterminated.


The non-dualist world view which many of the original Buddhist texts so forcefully demand is completely cancelled out in the mythic histories of these warlike models.

Trungpa led his courses under the name of “Dorje Dradul” which means “invincible warrior”. Completely in accord with an atavistic fighter tradition only beasts of prey were accepted as totem animals for his pupils: the snow lion, the tiger, the dragon. Dorje Dradul was especially enthusiastic about the mythic sun bird, the garuda, about its fiery redness, wildness, and its piercing cry commanding the cessation of thought like a lightning bolt (Hayward, 197, p. 251).


Garuda is the sun bird par excellence, and since time immemorial the followers of the warrior caste have also been worshippers of the sun. Thus in the center of Trungpa’s Shambhala mission a solar cult is fostered. But it is not the natural sun which lights up all, but rather the “Great Eastern Sun” which rises at the beginning of a new world era when the Shambhala warriors seize power over the world.


It sinks as a mighty cult symbol into the hearts of his pupils:

“So, we begin to appreciate the Great Eastern Sun, not as something outside from us, like the sun in the sky, but as the Great Eastern Sun in our head and shoulders, in our face, our hair, our lips, our chest”

(Trungpa, 1986, p. 39).

Why of all people it was the chairman of the Communist Party of China, Mao Zedong, who was worshipped by the Red Guard as the Great Eastern Sun is a topic to which we shall return.

The basic ideology of the Shambhala program divides the world into two visions: Great Eastern Sun, which corresponds to enlightenment in the Buddhist path, and setting sun, which corresponds to samsara. [...]

Great Eastern Sun is cheering up; setting sun is complaining and criticizing. Great Eastern sun ist elegant und rich; setting sun is sloppy and poor. To paraphrase George Orwell:

“Great Eastern Sun good, setting sun bad.” (Butterfield, 1994, p. 96).


From anarchy to despotism

Trungpa played brilliantly with the interchangeability of reality and non-reality, even regarding his own person, he was especially a master of the tantric law of inversion. He thus simply declared his excessive alcoholism and his sexual cravings to be the practicing of the tantra path. Whether alcohol is a poison or a medicine depends on one’s own attentiveness.


Conscious drinking — that is when the drinker remains self-aware — changes the effect of the alcohol. Here the system is steeled through attentiveness. Alcohol becomes an intelligent protective mechanism. But it has a destructive effect if one abandons oneself to comfort (Hayward, 1997, pp. 306–307).


Yet Dorje Dradul was not free of the aggressive moods which normally occur in heavy alcoholics. He thus spread fear and horror through his frequent angry outbursts. But his pupils forgave him everything, proclaimed him a “holy fool” and praised his excesses as the expression of a “crazy wisdom”.


They often attempted to emulate his alcoholism: I think there is a message for us in his drinking, Dennis Ann Roberts believed,

“I know his drinking has certainly encouraged all of us to drink more”.

(Boucher, 1985, p. 243).

Another pupil enthusiastically wrote:

“He's great. I love the fact that he works on his problems the way he does. He doesn't hide it. He drinks, and it's almost killed him. So he is working on it. I find that great”

(Boucher, 1985, p. 243).

Similar reasons are offered for his sexual escapades. In 1970 he abandoned his vow of celibacy and married a young British aristocrat. His bride is said to have been thirteen years old in 1969 (Tibetan Review, August 1987, p. 21). In addition he had a considerable number of yoginis, who were obviously uninformed about the andocentric manipulations of Tantrism.


There was admittedly a minor rebellion among the female followers when the Karmapa insisted on talking only with the men during his visit to a Trungpa center, but essentially the western karma mudras occupied by Tibetan deities behaved loyally towards their lord and master.


A lot of women have been consorts of Rinpoche — one of them tells that,

“The Tibetans are into passion, they think sexuality is an essential energy to work with. You don't reject it. So it's a whole other perception of sexuality anyway”

(Boucher, 1985, p. 244).

Such affirmations of tantric practice by the female pupils are definitely not exceptions and they most clearly testify to the charisma which the tantra master projects.


Thus we learn from another of Trungpa’s lovers,

“My first meeting with him was a real turn-off. I mean, I didn't want a guru who did things like that. The irony was that I had left my other Tibetan Buddhist teacher partly because he was coming on to me. And I just couldn't handle it. And Rinpoche is very much into alcohol and having girl friends. Now it makes total sense to me”.

(Boucher, 1985, p. 241).

Chögyam Trungpa has obviously succeeded in keeping his western karma mudras under control. This was much more difficult for the Tibetan Tantric, Gedun Chöpel, who died in 1951.


He left behind an amusing estimation of the “women of the west” from the thirties which shows how much has changed in the meantime:

“In general a girl of the west is beautiful, splendorous, and more courageous than others. Her behavior is coarse, and her face is like a man's. There is even hair around her mouth. Fearless and terrifying, she can be tamed only by passion.


Able to suck the phallus at the time of play, the girl of the west is known to drink regenerative fluid. She does it even with dogs, bulls and any other animals and with father and son, etc. She goes without hesitation with whoever can give the enjoyment of sex”.

(Chöpel, 1992, p. 163).

Towards the end of his life, Trungpa the “indestructible warrior” moved further and further away from his Hippie past.


As the head of his lineage the Karmapa is said to have not been at all pleased to observe the permissive practices in the “wild” guru’s centers. However, in accordance with the tantric “law of inversion”, after a few years the pendulum swung from anarchy to the other pole of despotism and all at once Trungpa abandoned himself to his fascistoid dreams.


His protective troops, Dorje Kasung, initially a kind of bodyguard composed of volunteers was transformed within a short period into a paramilitary unit in khaki uniforms. The guru himself put aside his civilian clothing for a time and appeared in high-ranking military dress as a “Shambhala general”. We do not know whether, alongside the warlike ethos of the tantric tradition, the physical handicap which he sustained in his car accident in England did not also trigger his unusual interest in military things as a counter-reaction.


At any rate his “military parades” became a fixed part of the Shambhala training.

On other occasions the former “freak” donned a pinstripe suit with a colorful tie and looked like nothing more than an Asian film gangster. Thus he really did play brilliantly through the ambivalent spectrum completely laid out in the tantric repertoire, from poetic anarchist and flower power dancer to saber-rattling dictator and underworld boss.


In 1987 the master warrior died and his body was committed to the flames in Vermont (USA).

“’May I shrivel up instantly and rot,’ we vowed, ‘if I ever discuss these teachings with anyone who has not been initiated into them by a qualified master.’ As if this were not enough, Trungpa told us that if we ever tried to leave Vajrayana, we would suffer unbearable, subtle, continuous anguish, and disasters would pursue us like furies. Heresy had real meaning in this religion, and real consequences.

Doubting the dharma or the guru and associating with heretics were causes for downfall.

In Tibetan literature, breaking faith with the guru must be atoned by such drastic measures as cutting off your arms and offering it at the door of his cave in hopes that he might take you back.”


“To be part of Trungpa’s inner circle, you had to take a vow never to reveal or even discuss some of the things he did. This personal secrecy is common with gurus, especially in Vajrayana Buddhism. It is also common in the dysfunctional family system of alcoholics and sexual abusers.

This inner circle secrecy puts up an almost insurmountable barrier of a healthily skeptical mind.”

(Butterfield, 1994, p. 11, 100)

Trungpa’s Shambhala Warriors


The inheritance

The immediate inheritance which Trungpa left behind him was catastrophic. Completely in the spirit of his Tibetan guru, the American, Thomas Rich, who succeeded him under the name of “Vajra Regent Ösel Tendzin”, continued the carefree permissiveness of his master with a tantric justification. However, in 1988 there was a scandal from which the organization has not fully recovered to this day.


The “Vajra Regent” had been HIV positive for three years and had infected numerous members with the AIDS virus in the meantime.


He died in 1991.


Trungpa’s son, Sawang Ösel Rangdroel, then took over the leadership.

“From Vajrayana point of view, passion, aggression, and ignorance, the sources of human suffering, are also the well-spring of enlightenment. Afflictions like AIDS are not merely disasters, but accelerations toward wisdom, and opportunities to wake up. They can be transformed into buddha-mind.

Trungpa was a Vajra master who had empowered Tendzin to guide students on this path”

(Butterfield, 1994, p. 7).

Even if Trungpa’s Shambhala warriors have forfeited quite a deal of their attractiveness in recent years, thousands still revere the master as the “holy fool” and “indestructible warrior”, who brought the “Eastern sun” to the West.


For this reason he is said to also be prayed to in the whole of Asia as a great Bodhisattva and Maha Siddha (Hayward, 1997, p. 319).

“For ten years he presented the Shambhala Teachings”, summarizes one of his sadhakas, “In terms of time and history, that seems insignificant; however in that short span he set in motion the powerful force of goodness that can actually change the world”

(Trungpa, 1986, p. 157).

Only rarely does a “deserter” go public, like P. Marin for example, a strong critic of the Naropa Institute, for whom this western Tibetan Buddhist organization is “a feudal, priestly tradition transplanted to a capitalist setting” (quoted by Bishop, 1993, p. 101).

On the other hand it goes without saying that the Tantric Trungpa time and again draws attention to the fact that the warlike figures he invokes are illusionary reflections of the human ego and that even the Shambhala kings are projections of one’s own consciousness. But if everything really can be reduced to forms of consciousness, then it remains totally unclear why it is time and again the phantoms of a destructive black-and-white mode of thought which are summoned up to serve as examples along the personal initiation path.


Wouldn’t it make more sense, indeed be more logical, to directly conjure up those “peace gods” who have surmounted such dualist thought patterns? What is the reason for this glorification of an atavistic warrior caste?

It goes without saying that in Trungpa’s system no-one is entitled to even dream of critically examining the dralas (gods). Although only projections of one’s own consciousness according to the doctrine, they are considered sacrosanct. They are pure, good, and exemplary. Since Trungpa’s Shambhala Training unquestioningly incorporates all of the established tantric deities, the entire martial field of Tibetan Buddhism with its entrenched concept of “the enemy” and its repellant daemonic power is adopted by people who naively and obligingly set out to attain personal enlightenment.

We thus have the impression that the pupils of the tantra masters are exposed to a hypnotic suggestion so as to make them believe that their own spiritual development was the agenda whereas they have long since become the pawns of Tibetan occultism in whose unfathomable net of regulations (tantra means ‘net’) they have become entrapped.


Once their personal ambitions have been dissolved into nothingness they can be enslaved as the loyal lackeys of a spiritual power politics which no longer sees the “higher self” in the “universal monarch” but rather a real political “wrathful wheel turner” (Rudra Chakrin) who lays waste to the world with his armies from Shambhala so as to then establish a global Buddhocracy.

Other Western Shambhala visions

James Hilton's novella, Lost Horizon, published in 1933, counts among the best-sellers of the last century. It tells of a monastery in the Land of Snows whose name, Shangri-La, is reminiscent of the kingdom of Shambhala. The term has in the meantime become a synonym for leisure, refinement, and taste, at least in the English-speaking world, and is employed by an Asian luxury hotel chain.


The idyll described in the book concerns people who had retreated from the hustle and bustle of the modern world to the Himalayas and now devote themselves to exclusively spiritual enjoyments. It is, however, no Tibetan tulku but rather a Catholic missionary who collects together those tired of civilization in a hidden valley in the Land of Snows so as to share with them a study of the fine arts and an extended lifespan. The “monks” from the West do not even need to do without European bathtubs — otherwise unknown in the Tibet of the thirties.


The essence of the Shangri-La myth ultimately consists in the transportation of “real” products of European culture and civilization to the “roof of the world”.

The most recent western attempt at spreading the Tibetan myth is Victoria LePage's book, Shambhala. The author presents the secret kingdom as an overarching mystery school, whose high priests are active as,

“an invisible, scientific and philosophical society which pursues its studies in the majestic isolation of the Himalayas”

(LePage, 1996, p. 13).

For LePage Shambhala is the esoteric center of all religions, the secret location from which every significant occult, and hence also religious, current of the world has emanated. Esoteric Buddhism, and likewise the ancient Egyptian priestly schools, the Pythagoreans, Sufism, the Knights Templar, alchemy, the Cabala, Freemasonry, Theosophy — yes even the witches cults — all originated here.


Accordingly, the Kalachakra Tantra is the overarching “secret doctrine” from which all other mystery doctrines may be derived (LePage, 1996, p. 8).

The mythic kingdom, which is governed by a sun ruler, is to be found in Central Asia, there where the axis of the world, Mount Meru, is also to be sought. This carefree adoption of Buddhist cosmology does not present the author with any difficulties since the axis mundi is said to only be visible to the initiated.


In accordance with the mandala principle her Shambhala has distributed numerous copies of itself all over the world — the Pyramids of Giza, the monastery at Athos, Kailash, the holy mountain.


Sites of the Grail like Glastonbury and Rennes le Chateau are such “offshoots” of the hidden imperium — likewise only perceivable through initiated eyes. Together they form the acupuncture points of a cosmic body which corresponds to the mystic body of the Kalachakra master (i.e., taken literally, in the energy body of the Dalai Lama). LePage too, sees a great “mystic clock” in the Time Tantra.


The segments of this time machine record the cyclical periods of the course of the world.


A “hidden directorate”, a mysterious brotherhood of immortal beings in the Himalayas, ensures that the cosmic hours marked on the clock-face are adhered to.

The Fourteenth Dalai Lama and the Shambhala myth

LePage's global monopolization of the entire cultic life of our planet by the Kalachakra Tantra could be regarded as an important step in a worldwide Shambhalization plan of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama. Nonetheless, the Kundun deliberately prefers to leave such esoteric speculations (which are in no way at odds with his doctrine) to others, best of all “hobby Buddhists” like the author.


So as not to lose political respectability, the Kundun keeps his statements about the Shambhala question enigmatic:

“Even for me Shambhala remains a puzzling, even paradox country”, the highest Kalachakra master reassures his listeners.

(Levenson, 1992, p. 305).

All that we hear from him concretely is the statement that “the kingdom of Shambhala does indeed exist, but not in the usual sense” (Dalai Lama Fourteenth, 1993a, p. 307).

Can we expect a total world war in circa 300 years in accordance with the prophecy?


His Holiness has no doubts about this either:

“That lies in the logic of circulation!”

(Levenson, 1992, p. 305).

But then he modifies his statement again and speculates about whether the final battle is not to be interpreted as a psychological process within the individual. For dreamers for whom such a psychological interpretation is too dry, however, the Kundun subsequently hints that Shambhala could perhaps concern another planet and the soldiers of the kingdom could be extraterrestrials (Levenson, 1992, p. 305).

He understands how to rapidly switch between various levels of reality like a juggler and thus further enhance the occult ambience which already surrounds the Shambhala myth anyway.

"Secrets partly revealed are powerful”, writes Christiaan Klieger, and continues, "The ability of the Dalai Lama to skillfully manipulate a complex of meaning and to present appropriate segments of this to his people and the world is part of his success as a leader”.

(Klieger, 1991, p. 76).

Ultimately, everything is possible in this deliberate confusion, for example that the Shambhala king in person stands before us in the figure of His Holiness as some worshippers believe, or that Lhasa is the capital of the mythic country of “Kalapa” albeit not visible to mortal eyes. Should the Kundun some day return to Tibet as a savior — some people believe — then the veil would be lifted and the earthly/supernatural kingdom (Shambhala) would reveal itself to the world.

Similar speculations are in fact very popular in the Buddhist scene. On the official (!) homepage of the Kalachakra Tantra the “dharma master”, Khamtrul Rinpoche, explains to his readers that the current Dalai Lama is an incarnation of Kulika Pundarika, the eighth Shambhala king famed as the first commentator on the Time Tantra.


But it gets better:

“My companion [the goddess Tara,] who led him through Shambhala in a dream", Khamtrul writes, “told me that the last Kulika King will be called Rudra with a wheel, 'the powerful and ferocious king who holds an iron wheel in his hand' ... and he will be none other than His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who will subdue everything evil in the universe”.

(Khamtrul, HPI 005).

Following this revelation, which prophecies the Kundun as the military commander of an apocalyptic army, Rinpoche worries whether the Shambhala army is a match for the modern armaments industry with its missiles and nuclear bombs. Here the kindly Tara comforts and reassures him that no matter what weapons of mass destruction may be produced in our world, a superior counter-weapon would automatically be created by Shambhala’s magic armaments industry (Khamtrul, HPI 005).

In the words of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama “world peace” is supposed to be strengthened with every Kalachakra ritual. He repeats this again and again! But is this really his intention?

With an ironic undertone, the Tibetologist Donald L. Lopez (formerly one of the closest followers of the Kundun), writes in the final section of his book, Prisoners of Shangri-La, that,

“this peace may have a special meaning, however, for those who take the initiation are planting the seeds to be reborn in their next lifetime in Shambhala, the Buddhist pure land across the mountains dedicated to the preservation of Buddhism.


In the year 2245 [?], the army of the king will sweep out of Shambhala and defeat the barbarians in a Buddhist Armageddon,[!] restoring Buddhism to India and to the world and ushering in a reign of peace”.

(Lopez, 1998, p. 207).

Fascist occultism and it’s close relationship to Buddhist Tantrism
The Shadow of the Dalai Lama – Part II

Visionary fascism was, and indeed still is, exceptionally deeply fascinated by the Buddhocratic form of state. In the late thirties (as the various fascist systems bloomed in Europe and the whole world) Spencer Chapman, a traveler in Tibet, wrote that,

"even in the days of the dictators one can only be amazed at what uncontested power the Dalai Lama possesses”.

(Chapman, 1940, p. 192).

The idea of kingship of the world, the uniting of spiritual and secular power in a single person, the ideology of war in the Shambhala myth, the uncompromisingly andocentric orientation, the tantric vision of the feminine, the whole occult ambience and much more besides were specifically adopted by several fascist ideologists and welded together into an aggressive myth.


As we shall soon see, entire fascist systems are based upon the adoption of Tibetan/tantric doctrines.

The Fourteenth Dalai Lama’s national socialist friends

As depressing as it may be for the Nobel peace prize winner’s followers, there has been continuous contact between the Dalai Lama and the far right wing and former national socialists (Nazis). His close friendship with his German mentor, Heinrich Harrer has become the most well-known of these.


It caused a small scandal in 1997-1998 when, after years of research, the Austrian journalist, Gerald Lehner, succeeded in making public Harrer’s “brown-shirt” (i.e., German fascist) past, which the latter had been able to keep secret for many years. Harrer is not just anybody. He is one of the best-known international authors and has sold over four million books in 57 languages (mostly about Tibet and the Fourteenth Dalai Lama).

The Austrian mountain climber and competition skier joined the SS on April 1, 1938 and in the same year received instructions to climb Nanga Parbat in the Himalayas after an official meeting with Adolf Hitler. Heinrich Himmler, himself most interested in occult phenomena is said by Harrer to have offered him a Tibet expedition.


In 1942, the Reichsführer of the SS (Himmler) ordered the creation of the Sven Hedin Institut für Innerasienforschung [Sven Hedin Institute for Central Asian Research]. This educational establishment had combined esoteric, scientific, and racial studies goals. It was completely in this vein that Himmler was interested in occult doctrines from “mysterious Tibet”, and assumed — probably under the influence of theosophical ideas — that a “race with Nordic blood” existed there, oppressed by the English and Chinese, and waiting for their liberation by the Germans.


Himmler’s “advisor”, reports the German magazine Spiegel,

“… and the scientist Ernst Schäfer believed that Tibet was the cradle of humanity, the refuge of an ‘Aryan root race’, where a priestly caste had created a mysterious kingdom of Shambhala — decorated with the Buddhist symbol of the wheel of teaching, a swastika. In 1934 Schäfer set out on the first of two expeditions financed by the SS to track down remnants of the ‘Nordic intellectual’ nobility”.

(Spiegel, 16/1998, p. 111).

Dr. Ernst Schäfer, a specialist on Tibet and an ornithologist, was one of Himmler’s personal staff and in 1943 took over the scientific leadership of the notorious project, “Ahnenerbe” (‘ancestral inheritance’), primarily devoted to racial studies. His third research trip to the Himalayas was officially described as the “SS Schäfer Expedition” and was considered a huge success (Kater 1997, p. 80).


Upon his return in August 1939, the scientist was presented with the SS skull ring and dagger of honor in recognition. Subsequently, the Reichsführer of the black corps (Himmler) had grand plans for his protégé: Schäfer was supposed to return to Tibet and “stir up the Tibetan army against the British/Indian troops” with a shock troop of 30 men (Kater, 1997, p. 212).


The undertaking was, however, called off at Hitler’s direct order. In the years to follow, Schäfer instead built up the Sven Hedin Institute for Central Asian Research with great success, making it the largest division within the Ahnenerbe project.

But let us return to Heinrich Harrer. War broke out while he was still in India and the young German was interned by the British. It was not until 1944 that he was able to flee to Tibet with a comrade. Coincidence or fate led to his acting as the young Dalai Lama’s personal tutor until the early 50s, and teaching him about all the “wonders” of western civilization and introducing him to the English language as well.


It is very likely that his lessons were tainted by the contemporary zeitgeist which had swept through Hitler’s Germany, and not by the British attitudes of the envoy Hugh Richardson, also present in Lhasa. This led in fact to some problems at the court of the young god-king and the English were not happy about his contact to Harrer. But there are nevertheless no grounds for describing the lessons the former SS member gave his “divine” pupil as fascist, particularly since they were primarily given after the end of the World War II.


In 1952 His Holiness’s German “teacher “ returned to Europe.

The adaptation to film of Harrer’s autobiographic bestseller, Seven Years in Tibet, triggered an international protest. Since the famous traveler through Tibet had told director Jean Jacques Annaud nothing about his “brown-shirt” past, and this only became public knowledge after the film had been finished, Annaud felt pressured to introduce “corrections”.


A remorseful Austrian was now shown, who begins his mountain-climbing career as a supporter of a regime accused of genocide and then, under the influence of the young Kundun and Tibetan Buddhism, reforms to become a “campaigner for human rights”.


In the film, he says of the brutal Chinese:

“Terrible — I dare not think about how I myself was once so intolerant “.

(Stern 41/97, p. 24).

Reinhold Messner, the famous mountain climber, found such an admission of guilt from Hollywood’s dream factory difficult to understand. He spoke up, confirming that he had long known about Harrer’s political opinions. This man, he said had up until the present day still not learned anything, he still believed in the national socialist alpinist ideals. In contrast, the Dalai Lama’s brother, Gyalo Thondup, defended the former SS member with the tasteless argument that what the Chinese had done to the Tibetans was worse and more cruel than what the Nazis had done to the Jews.

It is a fact that Harrer — in his own account- first turned against the Chinese invaders at the end of the fifties, after he had already left Tibet. There is not the slightest trace of a deep catharsis as depicted in Annaud’s film to be found in the German’s books. This was purely an invention of the director to avoid losing face before a world audience.

The journalist Gerhard Lehner also pursued a second lead: on September 13, 1994 eight veterans who had visited and reported from Tibet before 1950 met with the Dalai Lama in London. In a photo taken to record the occasion a second major SS figure can be seen beside Heinrich Harrer and directly behind the Kundun, Dr. Bruno Beger.


Beger was the actual “expert” who pushed forward the racial studies research by Himmler’s Ahnenerbe project (Kater, 1997, p. 208).


He too, like the Tibetan explorer Ernst Schäfer, was a member of Himmler’s personal staff. In 1939 he went to the Himalayas as a member of the SS Expedition. There he measured the skulls of more than 400 Tibetans in order to investigate a possible relationship between the Tibetan and Aryan ‘races’. In 1943, Beger was sent to Auschwitz where he took the measurements of 150 mainly Jewish prisoners.


These were later killed and added to a collection of skeletons. In 1971 Beger appeared in a German court and was sentenced to three years imprisonment on probation for his national socialist crimes.

The racialist, who was the last survivor of the “SS Schäfer Expedition” (dying in 1998), met His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama at least five times (in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, and 1994). The meetings were all very hearty affairs.


The former SS member dedicated a small brochure entitled “My Encounters with the Ocean of Knowledge” to the first three (Beger, 1986).

The Fourteenth Dalai Lama


The Dalai Lama (worshipped by his followers as the “Ocean of Wisdom” because of his “omniscience”) claims not to have been informed about his Nazi friends’ past. One may well believe this, yet he has not distanced himself from them since their exposure.


His statements about Adolf Hitler and the “final solution to the question of the Jews” also seem strange.


Just like his brother, Gyalo Thondup, he sees the dictator as a more noble figure than the Chinese occupiers of Tibet:

“In 1959, in Lhasa, the Chinese shot Tibetan families from airplanes with machine guns. Systematic destruction in the name of liberation against the tyranny of the Dalai Lama! Hu, Hu, Hu!


In Hitler's case he was more honest. In concentration camps he made it clear he intended to exterminate the Jews. With the Chinese they called us their brothers! Big brother bullying little brother! Hu, Hu, Hu! It’s less honest, I think”.

(Daily Telegraph, August 15, 1998).

The Nazi–Tibet connection

Were there occult intentions behind the “SS Schäfer Expedition”?


In the neo-fascist literature these are considered a top secret mission of Himmler’s to make contact with the “adepts of Shambhala and Agarthi”. Authors from the scene like Wilhelm Landig, Miguel Serrano, Russell McCloud, etc., let their readers believe that through these expeditions a kind of metapolitical axis between Berlin and Lhasa was constructed.


Dietrich Bronder knows that,

“Schäfer’s SS men were permitted to enter holy Lhasa, otherwise closed to Europeans and Christians, even the magnificent Lamaist temple that contains just one huge symbol, the holiest in the Mongolian world — the swastika”

(Bronder, 1975, p. 250)

Although in recent years comprehensive research findings about the interests of leading Nazis in occult phenomena have been published, this is currently played down by pro-Lamaist intellectuals, especially as far as a occult Nazi — Tibet connection is concerned. [1] Ernst Schäfer and Bruno Beger, the two leaders of the undertaking (the SS Schäfer expedition), are depicted as sober natural scientists. Heinrich Himmler’ esoteric ambitions in Tibet were minimal, indeed “probably did not exist” (Brauen, 2000).


Hitler himself appears as a decided anti-occultist.

“However, the suggestion that Hitler was interested in Eastern esotericism or even Tibet can be ruled out”

(Brauen, 2000, p. 65).

With an appeal to the historian Goodrick-Clark, the pro-Lamaist authors also assess the occult currents within the early Nazi movement (the notorious Thule Society for example) as insignificant, and completely lacking in evidence for a particular interest in Tibet.


Rudolf Freiherr von Sebottendorf (1875-1945), the founder of the Thule Society, is said to have explicitly spoken out against the suggestion that the light came from the highlands of Asia.

We do not see it as our primary task here to historically prove the interweaving of the relevant SS members (Hitler, Himmler, Harrer, etc.) in an occult Nazi — Tibet connection. Things were not as cleanly rationalist and scientifically correct as the pro-Lamaist intellectuals would have it among the SS.


When for example, at the presentation of a gift to the Tibetan regent in Lhasa Ernst Schäfer declaims,

“Since the swastika is also the supreme and most holy symbol for us Germans, the motto of our visit is: A meeting of the Western and Eastern swastikas in friendship and peace …” (quoted by Brauen, 2000, p. 79), then an occult note in accord with the zeitgeist of the time is present.

There are certainly also other, non-fascist, authors who create an occult correspondence between national socialism and Tibetan Buddhism via a esoteric interpretation of the “Hakenkreuz” (the swastika), a Buddhist symbol par excellence:

“The rightward hooked cross [signifies] a prayer formula in Tibet”, writes Friedrich W. Doucet, “In its left-turned form — like the national socialist swastika — it designates the orthodox Yellow Hats ... it is the Yellow Hats who supervise the spiritual rules in the Tibetan ecclesiastical state and also exercise worldly power”

(Doucet, 1979, p. 81).[2]

It is also certain that Himmler’s spiritual advisor, Karl Maria Wiligut (“Himmler’s Rasputin”), saw the “SS Schäfer Expedition” as an extremely occult undertaking and at Himmler’s direction attempted to exert an appropriate influence on the participants in the expedition. The SS standard bearer Wiligut/Weisthor, who was one of Himmler’s personal staff, was accredited with mediumistic abilities and he himself was convinced he was in contact with transpersonal powers.


Wiligut/Weisthor was considered to be the Schutz Staffel’s (SS’s) expert on runes and designed the legendary skull ring of the SS. His megalomaniac overestimation of himself (there are authenticated statements from him to the effect that he believed he was the “secret King of Germany”) and the fact that he was deprived of the right of decision by his family led Himmler to discharge Wiligut from the SS in 1939 (Lange 1998, p. 271).

The German author Rüdiger Sunner quotes the report of a member of the “SS Schäfer Expedition” over a meeting with Wiligut.[3]


During the encounter (in 1937 or 1938?), the latter was in a trance-like state and addressed his visitors in a guttural voice:

“I telephoned my friends this evening … in Abyssinia and America, in Japan and Tibet ... with all who come from another world in order to construct a new empire. The occidental spirit is thoroughly corrupted, we have a major task before us. A new era will come, for creation is subject to just one grand law. One of the keys lies with the Dalai Lama [!] and in the Tibetan monasteries.”

The visitor was not a little distressed, and goes on to report:

“Then came the names of monasteries and their abbots, of localities in eastern Tibet which I alone knew about … Did he draw these out of my brain? Telepathy? To this day I do not know, I know only that I left the place in a hurry”

(Sünner, 1999, p. 50).

In the 80s the Chilean Miguel Serrano took up the speculation anew that the Dalai Lama plays a key role in the Nazi-Tibet connection.


His “skill”, this author says of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, is,

“closely linked with that of Hitler’s Germany … on the basis of not yet discovered connections. A few years after Germany, Tibet also falls”

(Serrano, 1987, p. 366).

Wiligut also believed that Lhasa would form a geomantic quadrilateral with Urga (Ulan Bator), the Egyptian pyramids, and Vienna. Miguel Seranno was later to expound similar ideas (in the seventies). Himmler too was interested in geomantic ideas and it cannot be excluded “that he hoped for more exact data about this from the Schäfer expedition” (Brauen, 2000, p. 78).

Otto Rahn, likewise a member of the SS, who in the 30s attempted to render the myth of the holy grail and the Cathar movement fruitful for the national socialist vision and the SS as some kind of “warrior monks”, assumed that the Cathars had been influenced by Tibetan Buddhism.

“One of the Cathari symbols of the spirit that is god which was taken over from Buddhism was the mani, a glowing jewel that lit up the world and allowed all earthly wishes to be forgotten. The mani is the emblem of the Buddhist law that drives out the night of misconception. In Nepal and Tibet it is considered the symbol of the Dyanibodhisattva Avalokiteshvara or Padmapani, charity”

(Rahn, 1989, pp. 185, 107).

The myth of the “black sun” which was able to win a central place in the neo-fascist movement and displays similarities with the Tibetan Rahu myth from the Kalachakra Tantra, can be traced to the inspiration of Wiligut and his milieu among others.


In a commentary on Wiligut’s runic writings, a pupil, Emil Rüdiger, mentions an invisible dark planet, Santur by name, which is supposed to influence human history and to be able to be microcosmically linked with the energy body of an adept. Appropriate yogic exercises (rune gymnastics) are recommended for producing “high intelligence effects” (Lange, 1998, p. 226).


Just how seamlessly such “rune gymnastics” can be linked to tantric exercises can be seen in the writings of Miguel Serrano, the father of “esoteric Hitlerism” (Serrano, 1984).

It is thus not at all the case that there is no historical foundation for hypothesizing an occult Nazi — Tibet connection, even if it is publicly denied by one of the protagonists of the “SS Schäfer Expedition”, Bruno Beger (Lange 1998, p. 68).


Nevertheless, an occult interconnection between the SS and Lamaist Tibet of the dimensions in which it is currently portrayed in a large number of neo-fascist and esoteric publications has to be described as a post facto construction. This construction could, however, we repeat, fall back on an esoteric ambience in which Heinrich Himmler, the head of the SS, and other high-ranking Nazis moved. Thus the well-known, historically proven material has at any rate been sufficient to create new and very effective myths.


In the Nazi-Tibet connection, we are thus dealing with a process of myth creation and not a historical set of events.


In such processes, there is a blending of historical facts, the stuff of traditional sagas, straining for effect, and imaginary, visionary, religious, fantastic, and personal elements until it all binds into a resistant pattern and anchors itself as such in a culture. It is not unusual for different mythologemes to become fused, and this is exactly, as we will show, what has happened in the case of the Nazi-Tibet connection.


Here, racist Nazi myths have been fused with elements of the Tibetan Shambhala myth and with sexual magic practices from Tantric Buddhism.

In this process of myth construction it should also not be underestimated that the meetings known to have occurred between the Dalai Lama and former SS members (Schäfer, Harrer, Beger) have a occult significance alone by virtue of the fact that anybody who mentally negotiates an esoteric network interprets a meeting with the Dalai Lama as an occult event.

On the Homepage of the Government of Tibet in Exile ( 13. 09. 1994: The XIV. Dalai Lama between two former SS-men, Bruno Beger on his right behind and Heinrich Harrer on his left behind. The other persons, who visited Tibet before 1950, are: Mr Kazi Sonam Togpyal, Mr Robert Ford, Mrs Ronguy Collectt (daughter of Sir Charles Bell), Mrs Joan Mary Jehu, Mr Archibald Jack and Prof. Fosco Maraini.

In the meantime an enormous amount of literature about a suspected Nazi-Tibet connection has appeared, some examples of which we briefly introduce here:

  • In 1958 an American publisher released the book The Lightning and the Sun, by Savitri Devi (“Hitler’s Priestess”), which presents Adolf Hitler as an avatar (an incarnation) of the sun god, alongside Akhenaton and Genghis Khan. Devi does not mention a Nazi-Tibet connection, but introduces the “avatar principle” into the myth building surrounding Hitler that is seized upon by later authors so as to present the Führer as an incarnation from the kingdom of Agarthi/Shambhala (see Miguel Serrano in this regard).

  • In their best-seller The Dawn of Magic, Jacques Bergier and Louis Pauwells (1962) first claim that the Shambhala/Agarthi myth strongly influenced the founders of the national socialist movement.

  • Robert Charroux (Verratene Geheimnisse - “Betrayed Secrets”) presumes that Lama priests had gained influence over Hitler and worked on “a plan for exercising control over the world which was thoroughly the equal of that of the Germans“ (Charroux, 170, p. 258).

  • The anti-fascist myth researcher Friedrich Doucet (Im Banne des Mythos - "In the Thrall of Myth"], 1979) discusses “psycho-techniques of the monks and abbots in the Lama monasteries of Tibet” with which leading national socialist figures were manipulated.

  • Likewise, the anthroposophically oriented author, Trevor Ravenscroft (The Spear of Destiny), 1974), assumes that Hitler cooperated with “Tibetan leaders” in Berlin.

  • In the 80s, two books by the Chilean Miguel Serrano appeared (El Cordon Dorado - "The Golden Ribbon" and Adolf Hitler el último Avatara "Adolf Hitler: The Final Avatar"). Both texts form the basis for “esoteric Hitlerism”. One of Serrano’s central themes is the relationship between sexual magic and political power (especially national socialism). The Fourteenth Dalai Lama, whom Serrano has met several times, is woven by the author into the creation of neo-fascist myths around Hitler.

  • According to Jan van Helsing (Geheimgesellschaften und ihre Macht ... - “Secret Societies and their Power”, 1993), Tibetan monks worked together with Templar Knights who were organized in the highest lodge of the “black sun” on the establishment of the Third Reich. The secret order had (and still has) an important base underground in the Himalayas. The ruler of the underground kingdom is said to be “Rigden Iyepo”, the king of the world, with his representative on the surface, the Dalai Lama.

  • In Die schwarze Sonne von Tashi Lhunpo - "The Black Sun of Tashi Lhunpo" (1996), McCloud reports on the survival of the national socialist Thule group in Tibet . They are the followers of a “sun oracle” there.

  • For Wilhelm Landig (Götzen gegen Thule ... [Idols against Thule], n.d.), Tibet is also “the realm of the black sun! It is the meeting point of the esoteric circles of the Schutzstaffel [the SS], whose knowledge Mr. Himmler also knew about but did not share.”

  • In his novel (The Black Sun…, 1997), Peter Moon reiterates the decisive influence of Tibetan Lamas on National Socialism and extends it with new images. He takes the side of the old Tibetan Bon religion, and accuses the Dalai Lama and Tibetan Buddhism of religious oppression.

“Why”, Martin Brauen, a pro-Lamaist expert on Tibet, asks in light of this considerable and by no means complete literature list,

“does Tibet arouse the interest of the neo-fascists so much?” What makes Tibet so attractive for them? What is so fascinating about the Shambhala myth that it draws into its thrall both those who cultivate and those who combat it?”

(Brauen, 2000, p. 93).

He cannot answer this question. But in order to be able invert the fact that national socialism had a occult relationship to Tibetan Buddhism into its complete opposite, he foregrounds an anti-Lamaist faction within the German right-wing.


It was precisely the Nazis, Brauen says, who denounced the Lamas and the Tibetans as “Untermenschen” (subhumans).

  • Among the anti–Dalai Lama and anti-Tibet literature are works by S. Ipares (Geheime Weltmächte [Secret World Powers], 1937), who was influenced by the orientalist Albert Grünwedel. In his book, the author talks of an occult hierarchia ordinis of the Lamaist theocracy, which invisibly influences and steers the East.

  • J. Strunk’s arguments (Zu Juda und Rom — Tibet, [To Juda and Rome — Tibet], 1937) are more far reaching; he tries to uncover a conspiracy of an international ecclesiastical elite (with members from all the world religions) with the living Buddha, the Dalai Lama from Lhasa as their visible head. “What there are of organizations and new spiritual currents running alongside and in all directions nearly always end up on the ‘roof of the world’, in a Lama temple, once one has progressed through Jewish and Christian lodges” (Strunk, 1937, p. 28).

  • In the same year (1937) Fritz Wilhelmy published the piece Asekha. Der Kreuzzug der Bettelmönche [Asekha: The Crusade of the Mendicant Monks]. In it “Tibetan Buddhism … [is] openly appointed to play a more than mysterious role in the great global hustle and bustle of suprastate pullers of strings” (Wilhelmy 1937, p.17)

  • General Ludendorff and his wife likewise took to the field with great vigor against the “Asian priests” and warned that the Tibetan Lamas had emplaced themselves at the head of Jewish and Jesuit secret orders (Europa den Asiatenpriestern? [Europe of the Asian priests)], 1941).

  • Clearly the most prominent of the anti-Lamaist Nazi faction was the racialist Alfred Rosenberg, who in his seminal work Der Mythos des 20. Jahrhundert [The Myth of the 20th Century] made the battle between the priests and the warrior caste into the primal conflict of the history of the world. The Tibetan lamas appear here as the representatives of a decadent Asian Catholicism.


The problem with the construction of a fascist anti-Lamaism lies in the fact that apart from Alfred Rosenberg the right-wing authors cited definitely did not occupy positions of power like those of Himmler, the SS, and the Ahnenerbe project. “Hitler’s mythologist” (Rosenberg) was cut dead by Himmler and barely taken seriously by Hitler. The Ludendorff’s fell out of favor with the Führer.


In contrast, the SS with their rites and their martial style increasingly became the epitome of the Nazi myth. It was the SS who explored Tibet and it was a former SS trooper (Heinrich Harrer) who schooled the Dalai Lama.

Besides this, the national socialist opponents of Lamaism mentioned, who Martin Brauen so demonstratively parades to prove that fascism was hostile towards Tibetan Buddhism, are just as fanatically fascinated by the atavistic mythology of Tibet as the pro-Lamaist fascists whom we have listed above.


They do not attack the Lamaist system out of a democratic attitude or rational consideration, but the opposite, because they fear the occult world of the Lamas — namely, control by magic, the conquest of the planet by Buddhist despots, the manipulation of awareness through rituals, etc. — all concepts which can indeed be found in the tantric texts. Thus, right-wing opponents of Lamaism, just like the right-wing advocates of Lamaism, see in Tibet and its religion an occult control center.

Since the pro-Lamaist intellectuals can no loner deny that fascist authors increasingly sought out contact with Lamaist cultural images after the war, they emphatically reassure us that these were a matter of Western “illusions”, or at least Western hybrids of Lamaism which were in no sense just. With this they seem to think the problem is solved (in this regard, see Brauen 2000).


But they leave us waiting for an examination of contents which reveals to what depth and extent ideas and practices from Lamaism have been directly incorporated by the fascist side. Yet a debate about the images, archetypes, metapolitical visions, political structures, and rituals from the Tibetan cultural sphere which the neo-Nazis refer back to is of far greater interest than the question of whether there was personal contact between lamas and Nazis.


Here the actual work of cultural criticism begins, which entails:

  • discovering Lamaist myths of origin behind the “Nazi fantasies”

  • investigating these Lamaist myths of origin

  • examining structural similarities between neo-fascism and Lamaism

Only then when such “myths of origin” are not to be found can the Nazi- Tibet connection be said to have been exposed as a purely Western fiction.

The following list of paradigms, concepts, theories, methods, and myths which have essentially shaped the culture of Lamaism (and still do) have become central for the neo-fascist movement:

  • The combination of religious and political power

  • A strictly hierarchical state structure that rests upon a spiritually based “Führer principle”

  • The out and out patriarchal orientation of the state and society

  • A pattern of complete subordination of pupil to master

  • The appearance of divine beings of earth to fulfill political missions (the avatar, incarnation, and Bodhisattva principle)

  • A political micro-/macrocosmic theory according to which a Buddhist ruler represents a likeness of the entire universe.

  • The idea of a world ruler (Chakravartin) and a violent conquest of the world

  • The motif of spiritual/political redemption

  • The idea of a superhuman center of power in Asia, from where an influence on world politics is exercised (the Shambhala myth)

  • The legitimization of contemporary politics through mythic roots

  • The derivation of political control from myths of the sun and light

  • The myth of the “black sun” (Rahu myth in the Kalachakra Tantra)

  • Alchemic speculations (as in the Kalachakra Tantra)

  • An interest in secret men’s associations (members of orders)

  • The existence of a supernatural community of “priestly warriors” (Shambhala warriors) who observe and influence the history of the world

  • A “Buddhist” warrior ethic based upon spiritual control of the body and emotions

  • An apocalyptic final battle, in which good and evil stand opposed and all nonbelievers are annihilated (Shambhala war)

  • A fascination with the machinery of war (Shambhala myth)

  • Flying discs (UFOs) — corresponding objects (flying wheels) will be put to use in the final Shambhala war

  • A magical view of the world and the associated conception that the manipulation of symbols can affect history

  • Techniques for manipulating consciousness

  • A great interest in paranormal phenomena and their combination with politics (visions, oracles, prophecies)

  • A magic/political understanding of the system of rituals in the service of the state

  • Sexual magic practices for transforming erotic love and sexuality into worldly and spiritual power (Kalachakra Tantra)

  • The functionalization of the feminine principle for the purposes of politico-religious power

All these pillars of Tibetan Buddhist culture are likewise ingredients of the Kalachakra Tantra constantly practiced by the Dalai Lama and the Shambhala myth this evokes.


For centuries they have determined the form of Tibetan monastic society, completely independent of any Western imaginings or influence. Hence the question about neo-fascism's inordinate interest in Tibet and its atavistic culture is easily answered: fascists of the most varied persuasion see their own “political theology” confirmed by the Tibetan Buddhist religious system, or discover new images and practices in it with which they can enrich and extend their ideologies.

Some (not all) of the above-mentioned Tibetan cultural elements to which the new right has helped itself were also to be found in the Europe of old, yet these were either disempowered or relativized by the Enlightenment and “modernity” — only to be reactivated in the history of fascism and national socialism.


In traditional Tibet (up until 1958), in the community of Tibetans in exile, but above all in the figure of the Dalai Lama and his clergy, in the holy texts and the rituals (the tantras), these images and archetypes were able to survive without pause. Through the active presence of the lamas in the West they are now visible and tangible once more and play an ever greater role in Western popular culture.


Yet it is not just in comics and kitsch films that the Dalai Lama is portrayed as a god-king, but also both the respectable and the down-market western press, a label which gains fundamental significance in the political theology of fascism and is combined there with the Führer principle.[4]

Julius Evola - A fascist Tantric

It was not just the ideologists and theoreticians of national socialism who were closely concerned with Tibet, but also high-ranking intellectuals and scholars closely linked to Italian fascism. First of all, Giuseppe Tucci, who attempted to combine Eastern and fascist ideas with one another, must be mentioned (Benavides 1995).

A further example is the work of the Italian, Julius Evola (1898-1974), for a time Benito Mussolini’s chief ideologist (mainly in the forties). In numerous books and articles he has investigated and further developed the relationship between tantric rituals and power politics.


He has followed “tantric trails” in European cultural history and come across them everywhere among:

Using criteria drawn from Vajrayana, he propounds a cultural history of sexuality in his most famous book, Eros and the Mysteries of Love: The Metaphysics of Sex. Evola was not just a theoretician, he also practiced sexual magic rites himself. There are unmistakable statements from him about the “tantric female sacrifice” and the transformation of sexuality into political power.


Like almost no other, the Italian has openly named the events that unfold in the mysteries of the yogis and then confessed to them:

“The young woman,” he writes, “who is first ‘demonized’ and then raped, ... is essentially... the basic motif for the higher forms of tantric and Vajrayanic sexual magic”

(Evola, 1983, p. 389).

In dictators like Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini he saw the precursors of future Maha Siddhas who would one day conquer the world with their magic powers:

“The magician, the ruler, the lord”, he proclaims in regard to Tantrism, “that is the type of the culture of the future!”

(Evola, 1926, p. 304).

He recommends Tantrism as “the way for a Western elite” (Evola, East and West, p. 29).

In the Shambhala myth he sees a confirmation of the European tradition of the savior king, especially the myth of the grail:

“At a particular time decreed by one of the cyclical laws, a new manifestation of the solar principle from above will occur in the form of a sacred ruler who gains victory over the ‘dark age’: Kalki Avatara. Symbolically Kalki will be born in Shambhala — one of the terms in the Indian/Tibetan tradition for the holiest hyperborean [Nordic] center”.

(Evola 1955, p. 56).

We could fill many pages illustrating the influence of Vajrayana (Tibetan Tantrism) on Evola’s work. But however, we will instead concentrate on a detailed discussion of the ideas of one of his pupils, Miguel Serrano. Serrano combines Evola’s fascist philosophy of power warriors with the national socialist thoughts on race.


His works are particularly interesting for us not just because he is still alive (in 1999), but also because he has been linked with the Fourteenth Dalai Lama several times.

Miguel Serrano - The Dalai Lama’s “friend” and chief ideologist of “esoteric Hitlerism”

"Miguel Serrano”, writes his interviewer, Isidro Palacios,

“was the only [!] western foreigner who traveled to meet the Dalai Lama as the monk-emperor of the Tibetan Buddhists fled from the holy land of Tibet to the south because of the Chinese invasion. Our conversation partner [Serrano] traveled from India into the Himalayas where his meeting with the Dalai Lama took place, and since then a close friendship has existed between him and the now Nobel prize winner”

(Palacios, 1990, p. 2).

Who is this “close friend” of the Kundun then?

Miguel Serrano was born in Santiago, Chile in 1917. Between 1947 and 1948 he visited Antarctica for the first time, to which he later undertook many journeys. One of the massifs which he explored on an expedition there bears his name today. Between 1939 and 1945 he published the esoteric journal, La Nueva Edad [The New Age].


He was active as a diplomat for Chile in several countries, including India, Yugoslavia, Romania, Bulgaria, and Austria. He also worked as an ambassador at the International Atomic Energy Commission in Vienna and at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).


Largely unnoticed by the public, Serrano has been in friendly contact with numerous prominent national socialist and fascist figures since the seventies: with Léon Degrelle, Otto Skorzeny, Hans-Ulrich Rudel, Hanna Reitsch, Julius Evola, Herman Wirth, Savitri Devi, and the French Waffen SS man and author Saint Loup. The Chilean returned to his country of birth and lives some kilometers from Santiago (as of 1999).

He published numerous books with an occult/poetic content. Even his work best known in the West, in which he recounts his encounters with the German poet Hermann Hesse and the depth psychologist C. G. Jung, displays a great deal of occultist speculation when one reads it attentively. Serrano titled his book The Hermetic Circle: Conversations, Correspondence, and Memories of Hermann Hesse and C. G. Jung.[5]


This title alone should signal that the author had formed an esoteric brotherhood with Jung and Hesse, a sort of triumvirate of magicians who had gained admittance to the archetypal storehouses of the human subconscious and are unique in the twentieth century. Jung was sympathetic towards the Chilean who had courted him.


He wrote an effusive foreword to Serrano’s tale, The Visit of the Queen of Saba:

“This book is unusual. It is a dream amidst other dreams, one could say, and completely different to the spontaneous creations of the unconscious with which I am familiar”.

(Serrano, 1980, p. 7).

Serrano was also a great admirer of the American poet, Ezra Pound, who sympathized with the Italian fascists. Together with Pound’s widow (Olga Rudge) and Prince Ivanici, Serrano had a commemorative stone erected in Italy.

His occult studies took him to all parts of the world. He saw himself as a modern Percival (Parsifal) and Minnesinger, who went in search of the Grail under the protection of his diplomatic passport.

“The life of an ambassador is a farce and a folly”, he said in an interview in the journal Cedade, “My post allows me to meet with people of value like the Dalai Lama, Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Hanna Reitsch (Hitler’s famous female war pilot) and others”.

(Cedade, 1986).

Switzerland, Westphalia, the mountains of Salzburg, the Pyrenées, his travels in search of the Grail led him through all these “geomantically” significant sites, but likewise to the Himalayas, Patagonia, and Antarctica.

The Chilean was rightly considered the occult eminence of modern, international fascism. Meanwhile, his phantasmagoric writings have also developed a fanatic following in the German neo-nazi scene: It is the Chilean author’s obsessive intention to convince his readers that Adolf Hitler was an avatar (a divine incarnation) or a tulku, and ever will be, since he lives on in another body in another sphere, that of the kingdom of Shambhala. According to Serrano, the Führer will reappear as the doomsday ruler and fight a terrible battle, and that in the next few years.


How did this bizarre fantasy arise?

Shortly after the Second World War a mysterious “master” from the beyond is supposed to have appeared to the Chilean and said to him:

“Hitler is a initiate, he can communicate with those dwelling on the astral plane. I do not know who his spiritual leaders are, but I have decided to help him. Hitler is a being with an iron, unshakable will which he inevitably put into effect. He never yielded. I was in contact with him.”

(Serrano, 1987, p. 21).

After this appearance of his spiritual guru, Serrano was absolutely convinced that he had been entrusted with the mission of the century: the worldwide dissemination of Hitlerismo Esoterico (of “esoteric Hitlerism”). Whilst still performing his international duties as a Chilean Ambassador he held himself back, although he carried the idea in his heart from the nineteen fifties on.


During this period he published books of a poetic/esoteric content with several respectable western publishers which, although they without exception include tantric topics (especially the “female sacrifice”), studiously avoid mentioning the name of Adolf Hitler.


Only in 1978 did the Chilean first dare to go public with an open profession of belief in the German Nazi dictator, and published El Cordón DoradoHitlerismo Esoterico [The Golden Ribbon — Esoteric Hitlerism]. In the mid-eighties the almost 650-page, large-format book, Adolf Hitler, El Ùltimo Avatâra [Adolf Hitler, the Last Avatar], followed.


Serrano summarizes the results of his extensive occult research into this topic with the concise statement that,

“esoteric Hitlerism is tantric”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 330).

Shambhala: The center of “esoteric Hitlerism”

In the following sections, we hope to show just how much of his fascist world view Serrano owed to Tantrism.


It is of especial interest in connection with this study that he recognized “esoteric Hitlerism” as a central doctrine from the kingdom of Shambhala:

“In fact”, the author says, “Shambhala is indeed the center of esoteric Hitlerism. The entrance to it [the realm of Shambhala] was to be found in the vicinity of Shigatse or near Gyangtse [in southern Tibet]. Through my investigations I arrived at the conclusion that our center [i.e., that of Serrano’s occult order] had also been located there. The connection between Hitlerism and the Tibetans or Mongolians was also not immediate, but indirect, in as far as they established contact with the Hyperboreans (the Aryan gods of the north) and made free passage and the transmission of physical messages possible.


Tibetans and Mongolians were their vassals who had to guard the magic entry gates to their world. ... When I visited Berchtesgaden [the Obersalzberg to which Hitler retreated time and again], my attention was constantly captivated by a tellurian force, a tangible vibration in the air, which instantaneously linked this point with the Tibetan Himalayas and trans-Himalaya: Hitler’s high-lying refuge with the Lhasa of the Dalai Lama, with Shambhala.


For some particular reason, esoteric Hitlerism had chosen this point, which is full of direct connections, magnetic vibrations, and those which touch the stars, as the holy center of its order (the SS), and it had avoided letting a final physical struggle, which could have harmed this area, take place there”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 32).

In his book, NOS, Serrano defines the kingdom of Shambhala as,

“one of the hidden subterranean cities in which is performed the tantric initiation that transforms, transmutes and transfigures matter. There are people who say that it was the capital of Agarthi”

(Serrano, 1984, p. 186).

Before Shambhala was relocated in the Himalayas by the hyperborean (Nordic) siddhas, it was a kingdom at the North Pole. Shambhala and Agarthi are thus the two occult regions (or cities) from which the national socialist dictator, Adolf Hitler, was sent to our planet.


According to Serrano the two locations lie in a magic realm beneath the surface of the Earth.

“Thus the submerged Agarthi and Shambhala are to be found there, which the Tibetans and Mongolians speak of as the seat of the king of the world, and also the symbolic orient of the [Knights] Templar and the true Rosicrucians. Thus the unknown leaders of these two orders, as well the organization of esoteric Hitlerism [the SS], betook themselves there. And from there Hitler clearly received instructions”

(Serrano, 1987, p. 32). [6]

Following the Second World War the rumor (which Serrano seizes upon thankfully) arose in occult circles that Hitler had settled a brotherhood of Tibetan lamas in Berlin, who stood in direct contact with the kingdom of Shambhala. After the Russians entered the city the members of the order committed suicide (Ravenscroft, 1988, p. 262ff.).[7]

But Hitler - Serrano says - did not suicide; rather he was able to return to his subterranean home of Shambhala.

“Hitler lives. He did not die in Berlin. I have seen him under the earth. ... I kept this secret for many years; then it was dangerous to reveal it, and it was even more difficult to write about it”, the mysterious master we have already mentioned explained to his pupil, Serrano.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 37).

The “Führer”, however, did not flee to Tibet as is assumed in other occult speculations. Serrano doubts such assumptions, since on the basis of his researches he reached the conclusion that the mythic realm of Shambhala was relocated from the Himalayas to the South Pole (Antarctica) following the war and that today the entrance to the underground imperium may be found there. Hitler is thus said to have traveled to Antarctica.

In the near future, the “Führer” with ascend to earth from the subterranean Shambhala (now at the South Pole) for a second time, with a powerful army of UFOs in fact. (At another point Serrano reports that Hitler will lead his army on a white horse, like the Rudra Chakrin, the wrathful wheel turner from Shambhala.)


The “last avatar” (Hitler) will plunge the planet into a terrible apocalyptic war between the forces of light (the hyperborean Aryan race) and the powers of darkness (the Jewish race). The Jews, who currently rule the world, will be exterminated and the Nazis will found the Edad Dorada (the “golden age”) and the “Fourth Reich”.

Serrano took his “fantasies” literally. To seek his spiritual leader (or the tulku Hitler), the Chilean diplomat (in India at the time) set off and began exploring in the Himalayas and in Antarctica.

“In the book The Serpent of Paradise, I describe my search for the ashram of the Siddha in the Himalayas, which is likewise to be found beneath the earth in the Kailash mountains, in a very remote area where my master’s residence also is”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 40) [8]

He was convince that he would find an entrance to Shambhala or Agarthi in the Kailash. He also tried to reach Lake Yamdrok, because he suspected there was an entrance gateway to the underground Shambhala there as well.


But the Chinese turned him back at the border.


But the time was not ripe, Serrano was unable to discover the entrance to Shambhala. In Kalimpong, “before the gates of Tibet” he encountered a “man” who assured the Chilean that a mysterious “order” exerts an influence over both the affairs of the distant past and the most recent events of world history. Obviously this man was the guru who — as he recounts in his key book EL/ELLA — initiated Serrano into the rites of sexual magic, and the order was a tantric secret society.


Its members, the “man” said,

“live in two cities in the Himalayas, Agarthi and Shambhala. To get there one has to trace this (tantric) way back to the origin of time”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 10).

The pupil (Serrano) — we read in EL/ELLA — is prepared to go this way and is initiated into the tantras and the “laws of androgyny” by the master:

“This knowledge has been passed on to us by the serpent [kundalini] that survived on the ocean floor as the world of the god-men was destroyed, in which the woman was not outside but rather inside and where man and woman were one. .... Until you are one with the woman ... you will be no priest king ... The stallion must become a mare, the man a woman ...” the guru continued his teaching

(Serrano, 1982, pp. 11-12).[9]

This is never, the pupil learns, possible through chastity and asceticism. Rather, the man must encounter the woman in the “magic love” in order to divert her feminine energies. As we know, this requires absolute control over the sexual act and above all the retention of the seed:

“If the stallion expels the seed, he becomes impoverished by this... For as long as the seed flows outwards like a river, the play of the deceptive appearances will continue”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 13).

In another text it says:

“the magic love that is taught in ... Shambhala. ... In it the seed may not be issued outwardly and be lost in the woman, rather it must flow inwardly into the body of its owner in order to impregnate him with the androgyne, ... as one in the likewise symbolic language of alchemy”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 289).

If the man does not expel his sperm he can absorb the woman’s gynergies completely.

“If the woman does not receive”, Serrano says, “she gives! Through her skin she exudes substances, a concentrated energy, which satiates you and penetrates into your blood and heart”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 14).

But it can happen that the tantric experiment fails. If the sadhaka (the pupil) loses his seed during the magic sexual act then he is destroyed by the aggressive femininity:

“The spider devours the male who fertilizes her, the bees murder the drones, the fearsome mother wears the organ of generation tied around her neck. Everything female devours, every mare, mother, goddess, or woman. In one way or another the man is consumed”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 13).

It is thus a matter of life and death. Ultimately, according to Serrano the “killing” of the external woman (the karma mudra) is therefore necessary, so that the inner woman (the maha mudra) can be formed.


The author does not shrink from discussing the “tantric female sacrifice” directly:

“Only those who are able to love the woman so much [!] that they externally kill her [!] in order to make possible her inner rebirth will find the immortal city of Agarthi (or Shambhala)”

(Serrano, 1982, p. 13).[10]

For an uninformed reader hidden, but obvious to one who knows the logic of Tantrism, a tantric female murder is described in both of his initiatory writings, EL/ELLA [HE/SHE] and NOS [WE].

In a love scene from EL/ELLA a young woman expires in Serrano’s arms in order to then re-emerge within him as an inner maha mudra. He bends over her, strokes her hair and kisses her bloody lips:

“They tasted like bitter honey, and he swallowed a little of her blood” Then he suddenly sees the stigmata: “Strangely, it [the blood] was only on her feet and the palms of her hands as if she had been crucified. 'Here!', she said. She indicated her side, at breast level. A white line seemed to run through it, like a spear wound”.

(Serrano, 1982, pp. 72-73).

The references to the sacrifice of Christ are obvious, indeed they seem quite blatant.

“When I die,” the woman then says, “you will bear me within you; I will be you, live in you ... You have drunk my blood, and we are now two siblings. My character is already being transferred into your blood ... If god will, I shall love you even more when I am dead. ... I have to die that you may live”.

(Serrano, 1982, pp. 73-74).

With this she fulfills the wise saying of Serrano’s master:

“The decay of the one [the woman] is the purification of the other [the man]".

(Serrano, 1982, p. 93).


“The absolute woman”, he says at another point, “can sleep or she can die, which is the same thing”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 289).

Written in a fantasy manner, the book NOS — Book of the Resurrection also depicts a tantric female sacrifice. The heroine of this “hermetic biography” is called Allouine, the main hero is admittedly Serrano. Additionally, various “tantric” masters crop up. Among them are, unmistakably, C.G. Jung, Hermann Hesse, and the American poet Ezra Pound.


The contents of the book depict the voluntary self-sacrifice of Allouine, her interiorization as a maha mudra by the author (Serrano), and the latter’ achievement of immortality through the absorption of gynergy.

“The woman dies. She is dead. She must die. ... She is the warrior’s [the yogi’s] companion, existing only in his mind, in his spirit”

(Serrano, 1984, p. 11),

Serrano instructs us once more.

“She [the woman] becomes interiorized in you through her death, she inspires you”, one of his masters explains to him and in another passage continues.


“The secret path of yoga along which you are traveling is only for the warrior, for the initiated hero. It is not the path for the woman; because a woman has no chakras, no kundalini to awaken. ... A woman is the Kundalini. A woman has no soul. She is the soul. A woman has no eternity. She is eternity”

(Serrano, 1984, pp. 102, 147).

Serrano stages a tantric séance with Allouine, in which they both consume the five forbidden foods.


Then he drinks,

“the liquor of orgasm ... the heavenly Soma, an spirit of secret wine ... which is now only to be found in the river of your blood”.

(Serrano, 1984, p. 112).

We know that he is talking about the sukra, the mixture of male and female seed, of menstrual blood and sperm. This magic potion grants the Tantric immortality. In NOS too the author longs for the blood of his lover like a vampire and goes into raptures if he detects it on his lips. After he has washed the dying Allouine, he kisses her and drinks of her blood.

Yet Allouine patiently and will-lessly accepts her sacrifice:

“My desire for you (i.e., for Serrano) is reaching its peak. The fire of sacrifice has already been lit in my vulva and beats there like a heart. ... My will no longer exists”.

(Serrano, 1984, p. 111).


“The authentic, absolute woman sacrifices herself voluntarily,” we read in NOS, “immolating herself in order to give her eternity to her lover. ... The beloved is now the hidden beloved, she who has died and buried herself in your bones and your veins. The female Sophia, guru of the soul, she who courses through the blood, the female philosopher, Sophia, wisdom, the dove, gnosis”.

(Serrano, 1984, pp. 147-148).


Dying, his “wisdom consort” says to him, “I shall but love thee better after death. I give you my eternity. … My beloved, you will be my coffin of perfumed, precious wood!”.

(Serrano, 1984, p. 140).

After he has internalized Allouine within himself, the Tantric Serrano can now overcome his EGO, he can now talk of NOS (WE), since his lover (maha mudra) will dwell in him for ever. Through this love, deadly for the woman, the man gains eternal life. In this context, Serrano plays upon the word AMOR, which does not just mean love, but also A-MOR, i.e., beyond death.

Eternally united with Allouine’s gynergy following her physical death, Serrano buries her corpse and places a stone at her grave into which he has chiseled a leftward hooked cross, the supreme symbol of “esoteric Hitlerism”.

Hitler as a tantric and as king of the world (Chakravartin)

From Serrano’s tantric world view it is only all too easy to assume that Hitler (as a tulku) also conducted sexual magic practices with a wisdom consort (mudra). Eva Braun, the lover of the dictator appears to have only partially performed this duty.


Behind her, Serrano says, stood a greater one:

“We must thus consider the relationship with Eva Braun to have been like that between Jesus and Mary Magdalene in the Christian legend, like that of an alchemist to his mystic sister. ... The presence of the woman, her telepathic, self-communicating energy, the tensions this generates are indispensable for a tantric magician, for this kind of bearer of power. The mystic consort of Hitler was, however, not Eva Braun, but rather another”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 25).

He refers to her as the “Valkyrie” or as Lilith too.


With the name Lilith he draws a connection to Adam. Like Hitler, the biblical first father of humanity (Adam) also possessed two women, an outer Eve and an inner Lilith.


Did Hitler perhaps make an decisive tantric mistake, asks the author, in marrying Eva Braun (shortly before his suicide)?

“... Since the secret Eve [Braun] of transient flesh and blood was accepted, she now [took] the place of the mystic consort”

(Serrano, 1987, p. 25),

...and Hitler lost part of his magic powers (siddhis).


A according to Serrano the “Führer” of the Third Reich was a tantra master from Shambhala, the “high priest of the occident” (Serrano, 1987, p. 269) He came to earth to fulfill a mission — the control of the world by the Nordic ("hyperborean”) race. But in him Serrano does not just see the incarnation of a warlike archetype who lowered himself into a human frame in the nineteen-thirties and forties. In the dictator he directly recognized a tulku and god sent from Shambhala.



“was a highly developed being, a Bodhisattva, a tulku ... the incarnation of a deity”,

(Serrano, n.d., p. 119).

Just as a tulku need not only appear in the form of a single person, but can rather produce many emanations of his self, so too the various fascist national “Führers” of the first half of our century were the emanations of the mightiest central tulku and Shambhala prince, Adolf Hitler:

  • Benito Mussolini in Italy

  • Oliveira Salazar in Portugal

  • Leon Degrelle in Belgium

  • José Antonio Primo de Rivera in Spain

  • Plinio Salgado in Brazil

  • Doriot in France

  • Jorge González von Marée in Chile

  • Subhash Chandra Bose in India

All the fascist energy of the world was concentrated in the German “Führer” (Hitler):

“The tulku”, says Serrano, “ — in this case it is Hitler — radiates out from a center of higher power, which like an enormous sun absorbs everything and draws it into his fire and his fate. If HE falls, then all the others fall too, then HE is of course ALL [of them]".

(Serrano, 1987, p. 270).

According to Serrano, Hitler must also be seen as the earthly appearance of the Chakravartin:

“For the initiates of the SS Hitler was that mysterious prophet or magician who … would restore the sense of royal dignity, where the king of the world is the emperor, the priest of priests and king of kings; it is the leader, who will establish a new golden age for a thousand years and more”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 354).

This is clearly intended for the future, since– according to Serrano — Hitler will soon return once more to fulfill his cosmic mission.


One may think what one will of such prognoses, but it is in any case amazing what a large upturn fascist movements have achieved worldwide since the end of the eighties.

The SS as a tantric warrior order from Shambhala

For Serrano the tantric initiation is the central rite of a “hyperborean” (Nordic) warrior caste. Shambhala counts as the supreme mystery site for the initiation of the “priest-warriors”.

“In Shambhala”, the author says, “ the use of the force through which the mutation of the earth and the people can be carried out is taught, and the latter [the people] are introduced into the martial initiation, which makes this possible. ... Those who follow this initiatory stream have struggled to found a new/old order here on the present-day earth which has its roots in the transcendent origins, with the goal of reawakening the golden age, and they will fight on to the end...”

(Serrano, 1987, p. 258). [11]

This order is the secret brotherhood of the Shambhala officers, who have for centuries been incarnated in our world — for instance as knights of the holy grail or as Rosicrucians or finally as the occult elite of the SS, Hitler’s notorious Schutz-Staffel.

“Once a year”, we learn, “the inner circle of the SS people met with their supreme leaders for a few days of retreat, the solitude, and meditation. A kind of western yoga was practiced here, but nothing is known about it”.

(Serrano, 1987, pp. 171-172).

According to Serrano the SS were divided into two sections, an inner esoteric one and an outer one.


The “exoteric SS” were selected to,

“be able to deal with the most difficult tasks and adventures in the external world”.


“Nothing of the esoteric of the black order, its practices and teachings, its invisible connections and its occult doctrines was known” to them.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 264).

The “inner circle” of the SS consisted of,

“sun people, supermen, god-men, the total human, the human magician”.

(Serrano, n.d., p. 96).

The esoteric SS were siddhas (magicians) from the underground kingdom of Shambhala, or at least their messengers. In German, SS are the initials of the “black sun” (“schwarze Sonne”), and Serrano did also call the members of the order “the men of the black sun”.


We are reminded that the planet of darkness, Rahu, which darkens the sun and moon, is also referred to in the Kalachakra Tantra as the black sun. The author is convinced, of course, that sexual magic rites were practiced in the SS (the “new aristocracy of the Aryan race”).


Like Julius Evola before him, the Chilean makes constant references in his writings to how sexuality may be converted into high-quality aggressive military energy and political power through tantric practices:

“Come and take me like a warrior!”, a lover (his karma mudra) says to him at one stage in his key novels, “I give you my heart for you to devour. Let us drink our blood”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 54).

In EL/ELLA the author recommends to heroes initiated into the tantras that,

“the warrior should give death the face of his lover; the fiery femininity of death will be thus evoked”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 87).

For Serrano, tantric practices and the cult life of a fascist/esoteric warrior caste are one.

Additionally, the sexual magic of the SS was connected with racial experiments. These aimed at a mutation of the human race, or better, a regaining of the formerly high-standing Aryan god-men who had in the dim and distant past tarnished themselves through “ordinary” sexual intercourse with human women and produced a lesser race.


According to Serrano, such experiments were conducted in the Wewelsburg, the occult center of the SS.

“Laboratories of leftward magic” for the re-creation of the original, pure Aryan race were to be found there.

(Serrano, n.d. pp. 488, 589).

But these were nothing more than the above-ground branches of corresponding establishments in subterranean Shambhala.

“In Shambhala they attempted to produce a mutation of their kind which would allow them to return to that which they were before their interbreeding with the sons of man...” — when they still had a white, almost transparent body and blonde hair.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 54).

As Tantrics, the SS were “beyond good and evil” and for this reason their “terrible deeds” were justified by Serrano, plus that they took place at higher cosmic command (Serrano, 1987, p. 331).


The “final solution to the question of the gypsies” (many gypsies perished in the concentration camps), for example, is said to have come directly “from Tibet to Hitler, certainly from Shambhala”.


The gypsies used to live in Shambhala and had then been driven out of there.

“The reasons for this”, says Serrano, “were known in the Tibet of the Dalai Lama”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 366).

Just like the Knights Templar, the inner occult core of the SS were incarnations of the guardians of the holy grail, and “the grail of the siddhas [the magicians], of the solar and martial initiations” is to be found in Shambhala (Serrano, 1987, p. 264).


The miracles which radiated from the grail were evident in the achievements of the black order in the course of the Second World War:

“If one examines the achievements of the followers of Hitler in all areas of creation within a period of just six years, one cannot avoid admiring this miracle and making a comparison with the Templar order. And one comes to believe that the SS have likewise found the grail and even deciphered it”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 278).

Even the monumental architecture of the Third Reich is supposed to have been prepared on the building sites of Shambhala.


The Hyperboreans (the gods of the north), we may read,

“emigrated to two secret cities in the Himalayas, Agarthi and Shambhala.... In Shambhala they practiced the magic of the giants which made the monumental buildings possible”.

(Serrano, 1982, p. 54).

In the Second World War the forces of light and the “sun race” (Hitler and the SS) stood opposed to the forces of darkness and the “moon race” (the Allies and the Jews).


It was no ordinary war, but rather a global battle between the gods (the Nazis, the light Aryan race) and demons (the Jews, the dark Semitic race), between Odin, the highest god of the Germanic peoples, and Jehovah, the highest god of the Jews. The Nordic (hyperborean) heroes fought the “lord of darkness”, the “satanic demiurge”.


At heart, Serrano says, the patriarchal and matriarchal powers were at war.

Admittedly Hitler outwardly lost the war, but through his sacrifice and his example he saved the ideals of the warrior caste from Shambhala. He shall return at the head of his “wild army” to finally liberate the white race from the lord of darkness (Jehovah).


It will then come to a terrible final battle.

“These are the dimensions of Hitler, the envoy of the hyperborean [Nordic] siddhas, the tulku, the Bodhisattva, the Chakravartin, the Führer of the Aryans, so that the demiurge Jehovah has to mobilize all his earthly and extraterrestrial legions”.

(Serrano, n.d., p. 50).

One may well dismiss Serrano’s visions as the product of an overactive imagination, but it cannot be denied that modern fascism has found a home and a predecessor in the Shambhala myth and in Tantrism. Its mythological conceptions and visions of power can without difficulty be brought into harmony with the practice and political ideology of the Kalachakra Tantra for all fundamental issues.


The occult right wing’s move toward Tibetan Buddhism is thus in no way to be understood as the exploitation of the dharma for ignoble purposes, since there is a profound inner relatedness between these two ways of looking at the world.

The Fourteenth Dalai Lama and Serrano

Naturally, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama would simply dismiss any link between the Shambhala myth and Kalachakra Tantra and the “esoteric Hitlerism” of Serrano, regardless of how closely matched even the conceptual principles of the two systems may be. Nonetheless, it is of great interest to our culturally critical study that the Kundun met with the racist Chilean several times (in at least 1959, 1984, and 1992).


When His Holiness visited Chile in the year 1992, he was greeted at the airport by, among others, the leader of the National Socialist Party of Chile — Miguel Serrano by name. The principal ideologue of Esoteric Hitlerism told the reporters present that he and the hierarch from Tibet had been good “friends” since his time in India (Grunfeld, 1996, p. 302).


Serrano was also a friend of the German living in India whom we have so often cited, Lama Govinda, in whose meditation tower with a view of the Himalayan mountains he was able to immerse himself.

The first encounter with the Kundun took place in 1959. In his own account, the founder of “esoteric Hitlerism” was the sole foreigner to greet the Dalai Lama as he crossed the Indian border after his flight from Tibet.

“Shortly before the taking of Tibet by Mao’s troops”, he reports in his own words, “the Dalai Lama succeeded in fleeing to India. I journeyed into the Himalayas to wait for him there. I donned Tibetan clothes which the Maharaja of Sikkim had given me so as to attempt to get to Tibet from there. I made it to the Tibetan border, where — incidentally — I made the acquaintance of one of Roerich’s sons who also gave me a report of the hidden city lying in the mountains (Shambhala). The at that time still very young Dalai Lama later, when everything was over, gave me a small Tibetan dog, as a sign of his gratitude”.

(Palacio, 1990, p. 4).

It is at any rate interesting that the Kundun, who was introduced to western culture by a member of the SS (Heinrich Harrer), meets as the first (!) Westerner after his crossing of the Indian border the fascist Miguel Serrano, who sees a mythic command from the kingdom Shambhala at the esoteric core of the SS.


Serrano says of himself:

“I was employed as a tool and continue to be used”

(Cedade, 1986).

We may recall that upon crossing the border, the Dalai Lama gave vent to the cry of “Victory to the gods!”.


The gods that Serrano represented and as whose tool he served were Wotan, Odin, and, in his own words, Adolf Hitler.

Miguel Serrano and the XIV. Dalai Lama in Santiago de Chile (1992)

As far as the “enchanting” Tibetan temple bitch of “honey yellow color” which was given him by the Kundun is concerned, this creature had a most special significance for the Chilean. The lamas, the author says, referred to the petite race as the “lion of the back door of the Temple”.


Serrano’s “back door lion” was called Dolma,

“the name of a Tibetan goddess; in truth the shakti”.

(Serrano, n.d., p. 189).

Dolma is the Tibetan name for the goddess Tara. As abstruse as it may sound, after some time the Chilean recognized in the Dolma given him by the Kundun the reincarnation of a woman whom he once loved as a “mystic partner” and who (in accordance with the laws of the “tantric female sacrifice”) had had to die (Serrano, n.d., p. 189).


As Dolma the bitch one day passed away in his arms — Serrano had flown from Spain to Vienna just to accompany her into eternity — he recalled an event of mythological dimensions from the 16th century. As if he were in a trance he suddenly felt that it was not the Tibetan Dolma but rather the dying sister of the last Aztec emperor Montezuma, Papán by name, whom he held in his arms. Papán — Serrano claimed — originally a high priestess from the north ("Hyperborea”), had in Mexico prophesied - according to legend - the return of the white gods to America.


In her final hour, Dolma (the bitch) radiated out the energy of the Aztec princess who had to suffer a ritual sacrificial death.

Thanks to this vision Serrano could once more experience the fascination which habitually flooded through him at the embrace of dying women, even if one of them had this time been incarnated in a bitch.


In NOS, a dying dog (the fate of Dolma probably lies behind this) spoke to him like a tantric lover with a human voice:

“You don't need me outside anymore. I will howl inside you, like my brother the wolf”.

(Serrano, 1984, p. 21).

Such central “hermetic” experiences naturally tied the Chilean to the Kundun and his tantric world view profoundly and so it is also not surprising that Serrano linked “esoteric Hitlerism” and the fate of Germany to the Dalai Lama directly:

His “skill”, the author says of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, is, “closely linked to that of Hitler’s Germany ... on account of yet undiscovered connections. A few years after Germany, Tibet also fell”.

(Serrano, 1987, p. 366).

The Chilean did not yet know about the SS past of Heinrich Harrer, the Kundun’s “best friend” and teacher, since this first became known in 1997 in connection with the film Seven Years in Tibet. But we can be certain that this fact would have been cited by him as further evidence to justify an occult connection between Shambhala and the SS, between the Dalai Lama and Adolf Hitler, particularly as the Chilean indicates at many points in his writings that the SS sent “secret missions” to Tibet in order to search for traces of the Aryan race there.

Serrano allows himself to be celebrated as the “Führer” of the National Socialist Party of Chile. His calendar commences with the year of Adolf Hitler’s birth in 1889.


He describes,

“esoteric Hitlerism” as the “new religion of the young heroes and future warriors and priests, the true myth of the coming century”.

(Cedade, 1986).

In 1989, on the 100th anniversary of Hitler’s birth (the year 100 for Serrano) a commemorative celebration was staged at which the Chilean and representatives of “esoteric Hitlerism” from various countries (Chile, Spain, Italy, Germany) spoke:

“On the peak of a mountain in the Andes ranges which dominates Santiago,” the Chilean newspaper, La Epoca, writes, “and to the sounds of the Ride of the Valkyrie from Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung), some 100 Chilean followers and foreigners commemorated Adolf Hitler in yesterday’s evening twilight and promised that in the new Hitlerist age the continuing triumph of his ideas would proceed from Chile.


... Hitler, Serrano opined, would be resurrected from in the Andes ('Andes' means 'perfected, total human') and he would do like the Caleuche (a mystic hero of Chile, whose name means 'the man who returns’) and introduce the age of Hitler”.

(Epoca, April 21, 1989).

This event should not be underestimated on the basis of the small number of participants. For Serrano it had a ritual/symbolic significance and was reported in detail in the German neo-Nazi scene, for example.

In fascist circles worldwide, Serrano is a “hot tip” and his bizarre visions do in fact exercise a fascinating attraction on many young people. His nazi books are openly offered for sale in all South American countries. The German translation of Cordón Dorado Hitlerismo Esoterico is available as a hardback (Das goldene Band — esoterischer Hitlerismus).


Highly sought after copies of the other works (about Hitlerism) in German translation and individual propaganda essays are in circulation and passed from hand to hand.

“Serrano’s mystical neo-Nazism … [has] a distinct appeal to the younger generation”, writes the historian Goodrick Clark, “Here Nazism becomes a pop mythology, severed from the historic context of the Third Reich. The Gnostic Cathars, Rosicrucian mysteries, Hindu Avatars, and extraterrestrial gods add a sensational and occult appeal to powerful myths of elitism, planetary destiny, and the cosmic conspiracy of the Jews that culminate in a global racist ideology of white supremacism. …


Books by Serrano … are now circulating among neo-pagans, Satanists, skinheads, and Nazi metal music fans in the United States, Scandinavia, and Western Europe”.

(Goodrick Clark, 1998, pp. 221-222).

The Dalai Lama has never distanced himself from Serrano. Instead of decisively opposing fascism in any country, he recently called for the former Chilean State President and fascist, Augusto Pinochet, to be spared a trial.

In the following chapter, we shall introduce a further case where Tantric Buddhism, the Shambhala myth, and the Dalai Lama have acted as godfather to a modern, extremely radical and aggressive form of fascism.


A case which shook the world community — we mean the story of the Japanese doomsday guru, Shoko Asahara.


[1] See Martin Brauen, Traumbild Tibet — Westlicher Trugbilder ["Ideal Tibet — Western Illusions“], Bern 2000.

[2] Clearly under the impression that the swastika would become the emblem of national socialism, a moral category was introduced in that one distinguished between the hooked crosses which are turned to the right and those to the left. The left is supposed to produce evil, the right good (Doucet, 197, p. 74). Without doubt this is based upon misinformation. In the Tibetan ritual system both forms of swastika are common.

[3] Sünner does not name the author, yet it can only have been Ernst Schäfer. This is apparent from the following quotation from Hans Jürgen Lange: “According to his unpublished memoirs that are still in Berlin in the possession of his widow, Ernst Schäfer is said to have witnessed how Wiligut fell into a trance with rolled-back eyes in the Caspar-Theiyß-Strasse. A trance which Schäfer compared with the transported state of the foot messengers in the Tibetan highlands which he had already seen in his previous research trips (in 1930-32 and 1934-36)” (Lange 1998, p. 68).

[4] Historical fascism’s contact with Japanese Zen Buddhism is the topic of Brian Victoria’s book, Zen at War. Victoria’s historical critique reveals that it was not just Shintoism that was characterized by a militaristic world view based on a strong and pervasive concept of the enemy but also Japanese Buddhism in the first half of the last century. With very few exceptions (which Victoria highlights) the Japanese Buddhists professed to the fascistoid system of their state. Even such an undisputed authority in the west as D.T. Suzuki can be counted among them. There was hardly a Buddhist “personality” (the Soto, Rinzai, Shin, Nichirin schools) which did not enthusiastically bring its religious conceptions into line with the dominant system. “Warrior Zen” — “The Unity of Zen and Sword” — “Buddhism of the Imperial Way” — “Imperial Zen” — “Soldier Zen” — “Samurai Zen”; these were the slogans of the time. After the war the martial stance of the Buddhist schools was only hesitantly reviewed. It also partly survived and finds its place in the ideology of Japanese “Corporate Zen”.

[5] The German-language Rascher publishing house in Zurich did not accept the title as such as it feared the book would not attract buyers by sounding too occult. They decided upon Meine Begegnungen mit C.G. Jung und Hermann Hesse in visionärer Schau [My encounters with C.G. Jung und Hermann Hesse from a visionary point of view].

[6] The labels of Agarthi and Shambhala also lead to some confusion in a best-seller novel in right wing circles with the title of The Black Sun of Tashi Lunpho (by Russel McCloud). Here too there is a national socialist secret society in close contact with the Tibetan lamas. Its members are, however, known as the followers of Agarthi, whilst their opponents rally around Shambhala. In the world of appearances, the followers of Shambhala are representatives of western big business and Freemasonry.

[7] Those concerned were most probably a scattered group of Kalmyks who had sided with the Germans in the struggle against the Soviet Union and had been driven back to the capital at the end of the war. But the myth that leading national socialist figures had maintained a connection to Lamaist sects (the “Berlin — Lhasa axis”) has survived to this day and is the topic of a voluminous occult Literature.

[8] According to Serrano “the Siddha or god-man [is] ... the self freed from the influence of the stars, the stellar influences no longer touch him, he is Chakravartin, king of the world” (Serrano, 1987, p. 289).

[9] Serrano was initiated into the Tantras of the Kaula, a Shivaite order. Yet the initiation scenarios from his books which we describe here are completely in keeping with Vajrayana. Serrano is not very fussy about distinguishing between the Hindu and Buddhist Tantra tradition. For him it is a matter of the principle behind the Tantric initiation and he finds this to the same extent among the Buddhists and the Hindus. Tantrism is for him an esoteric world cult which he discovers among the Egyptians, the Knights Templar, the Cathars, the Rosicrucians and the secret societies behind Hitler (the Thule society). At any rate, he sees in Shambhala and Agarthi the two mythic points of origin from which the Tantras come.

[10] Serrano often uses the labels Agarthi and Shambhala as if they were synonymous. On p. 257 of his book The Golden Ribbon he writes: “Some are of the opinion that Shambhala is the capital of Agarthi.”

[11] Serrano regards Julius Evola and, oddly enough, Herrmann Hesse as well as the two teachers who first made him aware of the warlike spirit of Buddhism: “I am indebted to both that I got to know Buddhism as a way of the warrior. Evola explains that the religion of the Gautama is principally a warlike teaching which came from a prince who belonged to the Indian warrior caste, the Kshatriyas” (Palacio, 1990, p. 11).

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