English Translation of Letter from Savitri Devi to Saint-Loup – 23 September 1967
Translated by R. G. Fowler
Savitri Devi probably began her correspondence with Saint-Loup (born Marc Augier, 1909-1990) after her return to France in 1961. Their correspondence continued until Savitri’s death in 1982. The Savitri Devi Archive has all the letters from Savitri to Saint-Loup from her return to India in 1971 until her death. Naturally, we would like to have all the earlier letters as well. The French original of the present letter has been reproduced from the book Rencontres avec Saint-Loup (Encounters with Saint-Loup) (a collection of small texts by diverse authors in honor of Saint-Loup), published in 1991 by Les Amis de Saint-Loup (The Friends of Saint-Loup). We thank Arjuna for making the original available and for his advice on this translation.
—R. G. Fowler
23 September 1967
(2447th anniversary of the battle of Salamis. On the 26th, at approximately 7:30 p.m., it will have been 280 years since the Parthenon, which the Turks had made a powder depot, exploded under the bombs of the Venetian Francesco Morosini.)
My dear comrade,
It is formidable, your book Les Nostalgiques! I started to read it upon receipt, i.e., yesterday morning, and I have just finished it today at 1 p.m. (after having passed part of the night reading). It is certainly one of the most beautiful literary frescos of the post-war period. There is only one thing there that represents exaggeration: it is the paragraph written by hand, for me, on the first page; a paragraph much too flattering and that makes me feel very small (especially after having read again the story of Jean Benvoar that you told me in person, exactly a year ago – or about – on a bench in the Dallard garden!). Benvoar is the saint, not me. Benvoar and all those who, like him, proved that they were physically as well as morally above humanity. I myself would be dead a hundred times over if destiny had subjected to me to the tests that they underwent victoriously. What can I say? I would have died at a temperature of –54°. Not +54° however. Around 1957-58, as the interpreter on a construction site in Orissa (in the North-East of India) to assist three German engineers (from the East, but not one was communist and one at least had our faith), I worked without a fan in a hangar, with a maximum temperature of +55° in the shade, and the everyday temperature +50° (before the rainy season). In the room where I lodged, I had only one fan, +48°! That did not inconvenience me, or almost not. Whereas cold (unless I were dressed suitably to bear it) would have been unbearable to me. And I never knew cold below –30° (in Germany, one year). Iceland does not have these temperatures in winter, at least in the areas that face the gulf stream.
I believe I recognize you in Gévaudan. Or am I mistaken?
How I like and I understand Deckerke – he who prefers to retire among the lions, rather than going to fight under the orders of a negro smeared with Aryan technique. And to fight for whom? Not for Aryan man – for there is only one method that can lead him from the valley of the shadow of death that he has traversed already for centuries – and this method is that of Gévaudan, that of the self-conscious biological aristocracy, that waits by being transmitted – not for Aryan man, say I, but for the interests, financial especially, of the Masters of the “free world” . . . As for Indo-China and Dien Bien Phu . . .
One day, I will tell you in person the reaction of my German comrades in Emsdetten (Westphalia) where I was then, at the news – on 8 May 1954, exactly nine years afterwards.1 My reaction, for my part, was: “Well done! It serves all these ex-resistants right.” I still prefer, and very much, the attitude of the nostalgic Gil who traverses our holy places with his Lambretta, with the seriousness of all the pilgrims (of myself who has already gone nine times to Braunau and of two Irishman who go there the every year for April 20th), with that of those who will risk their invaluable bodies and their (irreplaceable) lives to fight against the anti-Hitlerians, certainly, but alongside other anti-Hitlerians. You will say to me: the ones are yellow and have slanted eyes, the others are White – more or less Aryan . . . Oh well, for my part, between a White and a Yellow (or Black) anti-Hitlerian, I prefer the Yellow (or Black). At least that one is not a traitor to his race. And in particular, he did not contribute to downfall of what was most dear to us. I do not have any objection to him if he lives in his sphere, in his place. Before fighting Communism with him, which is most of the time just a name given to “his” racial sense of awakening – I will fight that of the Whites of the whole world and especially the other spiritual plagues that the Aryans suffer without realizing that they are exactly of comparable nature and that are quite as harmful: Christianity, humanitarism, love for all the wretchs, all the decadents; the superstition of “happiness” – the strong do not give a d . . . [damn2] about “happiness” – theirs and that of others. For me, it is only the animals that fully have the right to be “happy”: they do not have, and they cannot have, an ideology; and thus cannot have something better to do.
Your passage on the OAS, this bunch of ex-resistants . . . Excellent! Bravo! One of the passages that I appreciated in your book is that which reports the funeral of De Brix in Johannesburg. Yes, that is beautiful – it is what should be done everywhere. But – there is always a “but” as soon as one leaves the small circle of Gévaudan, Le Fauconnier, etc. – but what would these ultra-Nordic Whites of South Africa say if, in the midst of the one their families, some teenager grew up nauseated with Christianity who said to them: “I hate this Boniface who, provided with safe conduct by Pepin the Short, went to cut down a beautiful oak – sacred, as indeed all beautiful living things are – in Saxony. He tried to spread his lies among our ancestors the Frisians, and they killed him. It was well done! Never should we have accepted this religion, product of Judeo-Hellenistic decadence.”
How would the Boer react if his son – or his daughter – said to him of his sacrosanct Bible, that he – or she – regards it at most as a collection picturesque (and often atrocious) stories of Semites? Exactly what you and I think. What would they say, these “racists” for whom a personal god believed it good to choose Jews as instruments of his “revelation”? For whom the Bible is the sacred book? These racists, who would undoubtedly be horrified and would undoubtedly regard me as a “traitor to Europe,” if I told them that I spent my years in India, the best years of my life, since I went there at age twenty-six, to fight the missionaries and all forms of Christianity, to discredit them in the eyes of the “natives,” to serve the indigenous traditions (actually not “indigenous” at all!) against them?
The Aryan – of Europe, of America, of South Africa, or Australia – will be saved only when he definitively rejects Christianity, “his expression also of the primordial tradition,” I am willing to admit it to its esoterist interpreters but, even in that case, an expression that is not made for him. And the Aryan of Iran (who lives in Persia or India; I am thinking of certain Parsis, as White as me or more) will be saved only when he leaves Islam – if he is Persian – or “the modern spirit,” the “progressivism” inherited from contact with Westerners – that consorts badly with his traditional Mazdaism – if he is Parsi. As for the Aryan of India, for his part, it is enough for him to open his intelligence and to note that the effort made by Hitler is nothing other, sixty centuries later, than the effort of Manu, the legislator, the presumed author of Manava Dharma Shastra (that one could translate: treatise [shastra] on what gives man his support [dharma], his stability) to preserve the purity of the victorious “Aryas” – of the “Masters” (it is the sense of the word “Arya” in Sanskrit) – in the midst of Dravidians with dark skin (though more advanced than them technically) and of the aboriginies, Negroids or Mongoloids, or men of the Munda type, which still today form the majority of untouchables in India – the remainder representing people who, for one reason or another, were rejected by their caste (but note that these aboriginies were perhaps two million in all India in the fourth millenium before Christ. They are now a hundred times more . . .).
I come to India. Do not believe what my friend Mrs. S. writes to you – who, despite all her noble qualities and her sincere adhesion to our ideas, remain a “Mem-Sahib” full of prejudices with regard to India – nor what I write to you; I, who was never a “Mem-Sahib,” but who came to India expressly to find the mark of the Aryan conquerors (and to help to ruin the work of the Christian missionaries there), undoubtedly have other prejudices. Go see for yourself, if possible, with somebody who can introduce you to the interesting places. If possible, also go with a photographer able to take nearly perfect photographic portraits. And return with a big book, large format, only of photographs, without comment: simply, under each portrait, a name and a caste . . . If the number of photographs of pure Aryans is, compared to the other photographs, the same as the number of true Aryans compared to that of the population of India (Pakistan and Ceylon included), you will have ten photographs of Aryans and four hundred photographs of all the possible varieties of mankind, from the noble Dravidian – or the Aryan-Dravidian mixture, as Mrs. S. puts it; it is undeniable that there was mixture – to the lower types that the authors of the old epics assimilated either with monkeys or with demons (in the Ramayana the Aryan prince Rama is allied with the monkeys [undoubtedly the aboriginies], to seize the citadel of Lanka [Ceylon], held by a “Rakshasha” [demon], Ravana, who had abducted his wife – but without ever being able to touch her, because he was, all the same, not demon enough to take her against her liking) . . .
Ten against four hundred. It is little undoubtedly. But these ten photographs that you would report would be as Aryan as any photographs of the most beautiful Europeans; as Aryan as those of the majority of Europeans. These “ten” represent a population of about fifteen million, in a total population (India, Pakistan, Ceylon) of six hundred million or more. For my part, I am interested in the fate of this approximately fifteen million who, in the midst of a foreign mass forty times larger, kept their blood pure through millenia thanks to a religion based on our eternal principles:
1st) proclamation of the superiority of the Aryan;
2nd) justifying this priority by the theory of reincarnation, the race of each being that which its soul deserves – deserved for centuries (Aristotle already said that the soul creates the body by which it is expressed) . . .
I never contended that National Socialism could be revived starting from India. I said only that nowhere, if not in India, does one find a traditional religious base, already existing, that can be used as a bond between our faith, the modern form of the eternal religion of light and life, the form of this religion adapted to a technically advanced society – and the primordial tradition. This tradition was broken in the West. In India, it was maintained in spite of the political upheavals, the periods of chaos, the invasions, the propaganda, for sixty centuries (I accept the chronology of Bal Gangadhar Tilak).
In the volume of the “Small Planet” collection devoted to India, written by Madeleine Biardeau (who is far from being one of us), it is noted with accuracy that “nowhere else than in India did the author hear [to her horror] so much praise for the greatness of the National Socialist experiment or admiration for the person of Hitler.” “Germans,” she writes, “are congratulated for being his compatriots.” And it is true. And the author saw very well that it is not, that it is much more than, an expression of anti-Britainism (if I can employ this barbarism). That it is due to the tendency of the Hindu to adore all that appears inordinately great to him, all that seems to him a “manifestation of nature” – “without concepts of good or evil,” she adds. But I know that those who, in India, adore Hitler as an incarnation of the divine and who know his doctrines, see in his racist Weltanschauung the modern expression of the eternal truth of the eternal “Shastras.” And I presented it as well in the hundreds of speechs and lectures that at the time I made all over India, but in particular in Bengal, Bihar, and in Assam (on a territory three times wider than France) for years. And people of the low castes, the masses with dark skins, non-Aryans, accepted it like the others, better than those who, among the others, had been poisoned by the imported egalitarian theories of the West, because tradition – religion, their religion – proclaims the superiority of the Aryans. The Brahmin without a penny and without education, is honored everywhere. He is a descendant, true or supposed, pure or partly mixed – but sometimes pure, that is clear – of the prestigious conquerors who brought with them Vedas (certain poems of which recall the celestial phenomena as they experienced them in the old Arctic fatherland, the stars going around the sky instead of “rising” and “setting”). A man of low caste – a fortiori an untouchable, be he a billionaire or very erudite – remains a man of low caste (or an untouchable). One gives him somewhere else to eat than in the room reserved for the Brahmins, according to a logic of “apartheid” without its biblical pseudo-justifications. An apartheid which would become, under the government that I would prefer, as effective as that practiced in South Africa. In the hands of fifteen million Aryans or near-Aryans all effective power would be concentrated, the Kshatriyas governing, the Brahmans guiding, inspiring, according to the eternal tradition. And that would have been, if we had won the war and if someone had been able to persuade Hitler that the English, although brothers in race of the Germans, went against its principles in their government of India and did all that they could there to bring to it an evolution in reverse. It is for that, and not the economic exploitation of India, that I reproach them. Them and the Portuguese who converted by force or fraud half the population of Goa to Catholicism and thus to race-mixing, who preached race-mixing (Albuquerque preached it at the beginning of sixteenth century). It is because of that, that after 1937 – as soon as an agreement with England in Europe had become impossible, because of the well-known influences that were exerted then in England – I deliberately joined in anti-British agitation in India (shouting with the others, more extremely than the others: “Down with the British Empire! May she fall apart.”). It was not without a certain irony, since one of the ancestors of my mother had been one of the companions of Robert Clive at the battle of Plassey on 23 June 1757! Therefore I organized anti-Portugese meetings among Hindus because they were anti-Christian, and I will never accept the point of view of so many of our own on Goa, “bastion of white civilization in India.” White civilization! In fact, the land of the most shameless policy of race-mixing in the name of the Christian religion and of Portugal (the mongrels are, it appears to them, sincere, the Hindus not) . . .
With the two magic words, and once again “thank you” for your admirable lived “novel”, Les Nostalgiques.
2 The ellipsis in the published text was probably in Savitri’s original letter, although it could indicate an illegible word or words in the original manuscript. In either event, I think I have provided the sense of the missing word or words in the square brackets. Compare Savitri’s discussion of happiness in “The Religion of the Strong,” the first chapter of Memories and Reflections of an Aryan Woman.