Nicholas Roerich - Terra Slavonica
"In what country would you prefer to live?”
“Naturally, in the Country of Culture.”
“To what would you dedicate your best thoughts?”
“To what would you offer your enlightened work?”
“To Culture, of course.”
“With what would you restore your consciousness?”
“With the victorious Light of Culture.”
“Are you not agitators?”
“In constant labor, we have no time for agitations.
In positive affirmation and realization we aspire to make earthly life more sensitive and more beautiful.”
Thus would the Light-bearers of Culture answer the questions of outsiders, or those who are simply unknowing, those fundamentally ignorant, or those who are envious of Light.
He who knows the sacred foundation of Culture, evaluates also the Great, the Only, Light.
He is convinced of the Hierarchy of Benevolence beyond which there is no created path.
The one who serves Culture ceases to be a dreamer, but becomes incarnate with the greatest and brightest dreams in life.
For what can be more resplendent and majestic than the service and realization of the enlightened elements under the shade of which are created great nations?
It is necessary, by all means, to strengthen consciousness, that the thoughts of Culture be not abstract, but a constructive affirmation.
The one who understands the positive beauty of Culture does not remain asleep, nor does he remain inactive and uncreative.
No, he who has immediate perception, will bring his contribution to the harmonious, conscious labor.
The worker of Culture understands real collaboration, that vital cordial cooperation by which even the smallest deed grows.
He who has broadened his consciousness by the understanding of Culture, would understand also his co-workers, not coercing them, but wisely transmuting the treasures of human experience.
And fearless will be he who perceives Culture, because looking with sensitive and benevolent eyes, he would see that fear is inherent in darkness.
Being beyond superstition and prejudice, the servant of Culture understands that the only happiness of thinking man is in ceaseless labor, in creation; for all of existence may be created in beauty.
Knowing the value of Culture he would begin to prize the quality of thought and would wisely apply this greatest creative power.
From the qualities of the Light-bearers of Culture are eradicated condemnation, slanderous gossip, and speaking about that of which one is ignorant!
What a terrible scourge of ignorance it is to talk of that which one does not know!
And how many apparently civilized people err in that regard.
The bearer of Culture feels deeply all the divergences between fundamental, spiritual culture and the aggregations of materialistic civilization.
Valuing the luminous cumulations of nations, the servant of Culture would distinguish between the accidental transition and real existence.
Understanding this great responsibility of human existence, the Light-bearer of Culture brings to both his thoughts and actions a high quality.
He intelligently analyzes the miraculous strength of nature, remembering that without exception, everything that exists may be beneficially utilized for our well-being. In the name of this well-being and Light, you discover in yourself a precious language of the heart
—a vocabulary which is fuller and more beautiful than any dictionary.
What bright convictions the language of the heart carries with it; and how effectively does its victorious testaments destroy even the darkest gates of lies and ignorance!
Certainly we are convinced that lies are foolish and futile, for in the Spirit, a lie finds no refuge.
Wisdom rests in reality which renounces neither spiritual nor physical existence.
And in the State of Culture lies do not exist.
It is impossible to remain static, you must either advance or retreat.
The standards of true Culture do not know of retreat.
The real bearers of Light do not know disappointment, because the magnet of Light is great.
The great nations—in whose name you are gathered here, and by whose symbols one may discover a creative heritage transmitted in the history of their great migrations—give us instructive examples.
We meet here heroism, renunciation and unselfishness, the martyrdom for Light and the noble deeds for creation.
These discoveries do not burden those who study them.
On the contrary, they inspire them to similar, incessant effort.
The great migrations of the nations are not accidental.
There can be no accident in the constant phenomena of the world.
By these characteristics, is tempered the living strength of nations.
With the contact of new neighbors, consciousness widens and develops the forms of new races.
Therefore, vital migration is one of the signs of wisdom.
In the steppes of Asia—in this cradle of all spiritual and creative migrations, in ancient times, migrations were considered the completion of education.
Even now we meet with remains of traditions of these beginnings of education.
In those far-distant lands, the gift of books or sacred objects is considered to be the highest sign of a noble spirit.
The great voyagers carried along such remarkable covenants, and on their way created great styles of art and living.
We remember the “Alan” heritage and the beautiful “Romanesque style.”
We also remember the characteristic monasteries both in the Slavic lands and on Asiatic frontiers.
Without astonishment we recall that the sword-belts of the Himalayan mountains and their fibulae are found in the Caucasus as well as in Southern Russian steppes and scattered through Europe.
On their fibulae, on the breast-plates, we find many images that have become the symbols of whole nations.
Let our breast-plates also bear the word Culture.
The same universally evocative symbol.
And let every Light-bearer of Culture be reminded of all the enlightened heritages and of the high responsibility for the quality of his creative work.
We shall not think about luxury.
Culture is found in Beauty and in Knowledge.
Immense wealth is not necessary in order to exchange and mutually strengthen the language of the heart.
I believe in the indestructibility of our common creations.
In the name of Light and of the Heart, in the name of Beauty and Knowledge, in the name of the vital, fundamental Evolution, I greet you from the snow-white heights of the Himalayas!
- Roerich Nicholas. Terra Slavonica. In Realm of Light.
Nicholas Roerich Museum. n.p. n.d. Web. Accessed May 17, 2014. <http://www.roerich.org/roerich-writings-realm-of-light.php#a32>.
- Copyright © Courtesy of the Nicholas Roerich Museum (New York)