Theos Bernard, the White Lama: Tibet, Yoga, and American by Paul G. Hackett

By Paul G. Hackett

In 1937, Theos Casimir Bernard (1908–1947), the self-proclaimed “White Lama,” turned the 3rd American in background to arrive Lhasa, the capital urban of Tibet. in the course of his remain, he accumulated the biggest choice of Tibetan texts, paintings, and artifacts within the Western hemisphere at the moment. He additionally documented, in either nonetheless images and 16mm movie, the age-old civilization of Tibet at the eve of its destruction via chinese language Communists.

Based on hundreds of thousands of basic resources and infrequent archival fabrics, Theos Bernard, the White Lama recounts the true tale in the back of the purported adventures of this iconic determine and his position within the development of America’s spiritual counterculture. Over the process his short lifestyles, Bernard met, linked, and corresponded with the foremost social, political, and cultural leaders of his day, from the Regent and excessive politicians of Tibet to saints, students, and diplomats of British India, from Charles Lindbergh and Franklin Delano Roosevelt to Gandhi and Nehru. even supposing hailed as an excellent pioneer by way of the media, Bernard additionally had his flaws. He was once an entrepreneur propelled via grandiose schemes, a good-looking guy who shamelessly used his appears to bop from wealthy spouse to wealthy spouse in help of his actions, and a grasp manipulator who concocted his personal interpretation of japanese knowledge to fit his ends. Bernard had a shiny destiny prior to him, yet disappeared in India through the communal violence of the 1947 Partition, by no means to be obvious again.

Through diaries, interviews, and formerly unstudied files, Paul G. Hackett stocks Bernard’s compelling existence tale, with his efforts to rouse America’s spiritual counterculture to the unfolding occasions in India, the Himalayas, and Tibet. Hackett concludes with an in depth geographical and cultural hint of Bernard’s Indian and Tibetan trips, which shed infrequent mild at the explorer’s mysterious disappearance.

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