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THE BANNER

In the White House today the Pact1 is being signed with the participation of President Roosevelt. Over our baishin2 the Banner has already been hoisted. It will wave in many countries today. In many coiners of the world, friends, and co-workers will gather in solemn communion and will determine the next forthcoming means of safeguarding cultural values. We shall not tire of repeating that in addition to recognition by the government active public participation is needed. Cultural values adorn and elevate all life, from small to great. Therefore an active care about them must be evidenced by all.

No matter how many countries signed the Pact today, this day will be preserved in history as one of memorable cultural attainment. The government has lent its powerful hand, and thus many new ways have been opened for all active adherents of culture. Maybe some sinister attempts will also be revealed today. The choice between Light and darkness must arise unavoidably. This is not a division of opinions, but indeed a choice between the constructive and destructive, the positive and negative.

The success of the signing of the Pact, and any opposition as well, should equally encourage all co-workers to further achievement. Let us cherish this day in our memory as a sign of an enlightened future, as one more impulse toward useful constructive attainments. I stress that the expression "division of opinions" would be quite unacceptable at present. Light and darkness never unite and therefore cannot become divided. But if darkness senses danger to itself, it roars, it yelps, and fights. It could never have separated itself from Light, as is generally thought, for its essence was always the opposite of Light. Likewise, it will be always a dark background upon which glowing sparks are even more brilliant.

Let no one think that precisely today, on this day of achievement and festival, it is, as it were, unfitting to speak about darkness. For if we understand it as the antithesis of Light, as something which is dispersed by Light, then indeed on the day of the Festival of Light it can be remembered that a certain portion of darkness was dispersed today. We have never concealed the fact that darkness in its sinister aspect is strong. We have never concealed the fact that each victory over darkness will be the result of a big and difficult battle. Therefore, great is the victory of Light over darkness. Only in the full realization of the scope of this battle can we truly rejoice at each victory of Light.

Everybody knows that the Light and darkness of which we speak are by no means abstractions. They are not only a reality, they are evident to every eye. Here on Earth we see the servants of Light in labor and struggle. And also here we perceive the evil servants of darkness, filled with hatred of all that exists. Here in life, we learn the ways of Light, and likewise we are convinced of the sinister unity of the dark legions. The latter should not cause aggravation since it is unfitting to worry and thus weaken oneself when all the legions of Light are summoned. On the contrary, one should always rejoice at each flash of Light, which like lightning clears the thickening clouds.

Verily, today, the fifteenth of April, will and must be a memorable day. One more beacon will come into being, which will bring friends closer in far away countries, beyond the oceans, beyond the mountains, scattered through all the byways of Earth. We shall ask them once again to express themselves about all the useful and undeferrable matters. In many countries, at least this one day will teach a great deal. If we were to collect all these tested findings, there would be a whole treasury of useful and undeferrable advices. And so, let us counsel each other, and share all our accumulations and observations. Even during ordinary days, when it would seem that nothing of special significance occurred, even then the most urgent considerations have appeared. And now, when indeed the important and the significant take place, how many new strivings should arise! If, during the ordinary days, signs of calamity constantly arose and undeferrable help was demanded, then the significant date should instill in all co-workers of the Pact still greater vigilance and perspicacity. Precisely perspicacity is necessary in the matter of safeguarding culture. One should foresee many consequences. The causes may be deeply concealed and painted in deceptive colors, but they could lead to shocking results. Yet, to discern where the claws are hidden will be an excellent task for all guardians of cultural values.

We have spoken many times about a multitude of dangers for cultural values these days. Now governments offer us a powerful helping hand. We accept this support as a great possibility of new achievements. The Pact should not remain static upon the shelf of statutes of law. Each memorial day of the Pact must become a practical means for raising and strengthening the guardian Banner.

And so, in the desert, over a desolate baishin the Banner waves. But the deserts can also be very diverse. If, somewhere, a crowd of dark ignoramuses is gathered, this will also be a desert  waterless, soulless, heartless.

Let the Banner wave also over the hearths of Light, over sanctuaries and strongholds of beauty. Let it wave over all deserts, over lonely recesses of beauty, so that from this sacred seed deserts may bloom.

The Banner is raised. In the spirit and in the heart it will not be lowered. By the luminous fire of the heart the Banner of Culture will flourish. So be it!

Light conquers darkness.

Tzagan Kure

April 15, 1935

1The Pact and Banner of Peace.

2 Mongolian dwelling.

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