“I cannot explain Hitler; I think the mystics have something to say in the question” reflected historian Alan Bullock.
A new book takes the hint.
Whole libraries have been written about Hitler and Nazi Germany. Yet many of the best-known historians agree that he remains an enigma. How was this ex-soldier from the First World War – once even contemptuously compared to ‘a worn-out stray dog looking for a master' – able to become, in a few years, the leader and messiah of the German people? How could a non-entity turn into a seer and a politician who accomplished feats deemed impossible, such as wiping out the humiliation of the Versailles Treaty, rebuilding a prostrate Germany, unifying the country in an efficient war machine and becoming known, if only temporarily, as a great statesman? How could a nobody unleash the most destructive and deadliest war humanity has ever known? How was it possible that a man considered evil and demonic even by his entourage could remain the head of the German state? In Hitler and his God - The Background to the Hitler Phenomenon, author Georges van Vrekhem deals with these questions.
“I chose to write this book because of Sri Aurobindo's and The Mother's involvement in this war,” says Van Vrekhem. “In my earlier book Beyond Man – The Life and Work of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, I had written a chapter about it, but as the main theme was different, I had no opportunity to properly research this aspect of their work. But had I known what it would involve, I might have chosen a different topic.” He refers to the the 3½ years of study, the more than 500 books he read in five different languages, and the 1½ years he spent writing a text of more than 1500 pages and then reducing it to the present book's 700. Recalls Van Vrekhem, “This was one of the most difficult periods of my life, living day in day out in the presence of Hitler, of concentration camps and demonic deeds, of torture and war. In these five years I had many nightmares.”
Hitler and his God has four themes. The first describes the conditions prevailing in Germany after its defeat in the First World War: the longing for a better world; the desperate search for a Leader; the German ambition and racism; the romantic movements such as the ‘Order of the Germanic people'; the history of the German Jews; the roots of Nazism; and the mushrooming of secret occult and spiritualist societies.
A second theme deals with Hitler himself – the development of his mediumistic capacities, the role of the Thule society and that of Hitler's mentor, Dietrich Eckhart – the anti-semite who was probably the only one who really knew what, or rather who, was driving his ‘pupil' and who said, towards the end of his life: “Follow Hitler. He will dance, but it is I who wrote the tune. We have given him the means to communicate with Them.”
The third theme is Hitler's possession by a vital power, an ‘Asuric' being which called itself ‘The Lord of the Nations, Master of the Earth', and how meticulously he followed that being's inspirations – which Hitler had written down in Mein Kampf, the book that laid bare his thoughts and intentions.
The final theme deals with Sri Aurobindo and The Mother and shows that what they were saying and predicting during the Second World War far away in Pondicherry , with no other source of information than the BBC radio and their own spiritual powers, has proven to be historically correct.
“To write a book about the Second World War that highlights Sri Aurobindo's and The Mother's role and deals with the occult influence behind Hitler, is a daunting job,” says Van Vrekhem. “You run the risk of being called an idiot. Usually, historians tend to ignore the occult aspects of historic phenomena, even though they can't give answers to the ‘why'. In the case of Nazi Germany, the role of historians in this respect has been made extra difficult, as we know that during the post-war trials of the International Tribunal in Nuremberg much material related to the influence of esoteric thought on national Socialism and the Nazi hierarchy was deliberately suppressed and was subsequently ‘lost'. Perhaps as a consequence, many of the existing books that try to give ‘occult' explanations for the Hitler phenomenon are based on pure fantasy and disregard historical facts. For that reason I had to provide a very solid historical basis before I could point to the work of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.” He adds: “This was also necessary for the many devotees and disciples of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. Many of them know little about this war. They do not understand why Sri Aurobindo called it ‘The Mother's War'; or why Sri Aurobindo and The Mother stated that they had to interrupt their own work for the entire duration of the war to prevent humanity falling back into an age of barbarism; or why Sri Aurobindo compared this war to the legendary Battle of Kurukshetra.”
On the sidelines, Hitler and his God deals with the demonic work of Hitler's underlings under the diabolical influence of Hitler, or rather, of the Asura that possessed him. That Hitler was a demon was evident even to many in Hitler's entourage, but few people knew how to protect themselves and most followed him slavishly. Most illustrative is the eye-witness account of what happened after Hitler's suicide in his Berlin bunker: “A great and heavy cloud seemed to roll away from the spirits of the bunker-dwellers. There was dance. The mood had completely changed.” The instrument stopped functioning, the spell dropped off; the asuric influence vanished.
Towards the end of the book two chapters highlight an opposition: one deals Hitler's vision, the other one with Sri Aurobindo's. They show that Hitler's vision was the black shadow of Sri Aurobindo's.
Hitler saw himself as the announcer and initiator of a new era in human history. It was his intention to create a race of supermen who were to be the lords of a new world; their domination would be global; they would no longer be subject to feelings or emotions and act in a superior and ruthless way towards the lesser races. They would consider war as their element, death as a glorification, taking pride in violence and cruelty. Sri Aurobindo's vision was that of a new race initiating the transformation of the human race into a race of higher beings he also called ‘supermen', but who would be conscious instruments of the Divine. His work consisted in realising a higher form of consciousness, ‘The Supermind', and bringing it down into matter so that it might create a new, higher species. This was the work which was interrupted by the Second World War, and which came to fruition in 1956, when The Mother declared that ‘A new world is born.'
In the book's concluding chapter, Van Vrekhem writes about the events immediately after the Second World War, when the fate of the world was still in the balance. He describes the Second World War as one phase of the Great Twentieth Century War, which itself was the result of the changes in humanity preparing to take it a leap forward in its evolution. “The world is now subject to an enormous confusion. The cause, however, is the fact that humanity is becoming one for the first time in its existence.”
Georges van Vrekhem
Hitler & his God – The Background to the Hitler phenomenon. Rupa & Co, 700 pages, Rs 395
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