I am writing while our plane is being refueled at Teheran, Iran (which is Persia). We are en route from Colombo, Ceylon, to Israel. Now our engines are starting up. I will have to fold my typewriter back up into its place until we are airborne.
In Ceylon, while we were on their very super-powerful radio station for two years — now several years ago — (but our visit here may result in getting back on) I had an interesting meeting with the Prime Minister, in the living room of her official residence, Friday afternoon. Last night (Saturday night) my daughter and I, with Mr. and Mrs. Rader and Mr. Gotoh, were guests at dinner at "Queen's House," residence of the Governor General. It is really a palace — quite huge for a private residence. It was built over 400 years ago by the Dutch, when they were in control of Ceylon, before it came into British hands. Ceylon is now independent, but a member of the British Commonwealth. The Governor General is appointed by Queen Elizabeth of England.
We had been invited to Ceylon by the Prime Minister, Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike, through the Ceylon High Commissioner (same level as Ambassador) to India, at New Delhi. The High Commissioner accompanied us on our plane to Colombo. I will give you a report of the meeting with the Prime Minister in the Personal article in the May PLAIN TRUTH. I just thought in this more personal and confidential letter to our own inner family of Co-Workers you might enjoy some of the more personal highlights.
At the dinner at "Queen's House" last night besides our party, were the Governor General and his wife, his Chief Aide and wife, and the High Commissioner of Ceylon from New Delhi.
This morning, we brought the High Commissioner with us as far as Bombay, where he caught a commercial flight back to New Delhi. We have had to make the one fuel stop between Bombay and Israel, at Teheran. While we were on the ground at Bombay, one of our Indian Co-Workers who is a mechanic with Indian Airlines, recognized our plane, and came aboard for a few minutes' visit. I have met him two or three times before. His daughter graduated from Ambassador College, English campus, and until her marriage was also a faculty member.
Earlier, at New Dalhi, I had another visit with President V.V. Giri, and also a meeting with our U.S. Ambassador Keating. He is the former Senator from New York. I am sorry that there have recently been more or less strained relations between the Governments of India and the United States. For that reason protocol made it inadvisable for me to see Mrs. Gandhi, the Indian Prime Minister, when I had had a talk with our American Ambassador on the same visit.
However, at New Delhi we were entertained twice at the home of the Executive Secretary to the President, Dr. Singh — and there we met two or three maharajahs, and the Ambassadors from Chile, Argentina, and Sudan, and we received invitations to visit their countries in South America and Africa.
I have had to notice, on this trip around the world, that relations between many governments are indeed becoming more strained and tense.
I overlooked mentioning that, on meeting the Prime Minister of Ceylon, I have now had meetings of some length with all three of the women Prime Ministers in the world — the other two being Mrs. Indira Gandhi, and Mrs. Golda Meir of Israel (whom, by the way, I may see again this week).
On this present trip, we left Pasadena Monday, March 6th, flew out to Honolulu, stopped overnight, then Tuesday morning flew (one stop for fuel at Wake Island) to Tokyo. We did not disembark, but Dr. and Mrs. Ohama came aboard our aircraft and flew with us to Seoul, Korea. Dr. Ohama is the leading educator of Japan, and perhaps the leading nonofficial adviser to the Government. He has visited both our Pasadena and Texas campuses, and addressed the student bodies.
I had never been to Korea before. Dr. Ohama and I had expected to have a meeting with the President of Korea, but, as frequently happens with Heads of State, emergency matters came up that prevented. However, I did have a very fine meeting with the Minister of Education and his two Chief Aides.
Then back to Tokyo, where events for us were real exciting.
We flew back to Tokyo on Friday. Had dinner Saturday night with the new Ambassador, from Israel, and his wife. Had tea with them at their Embassy Sunday afternoon. Had tea with the Emperor's brother, Prince Mikasa, on Monday afternoon at his palace. On Monday night we were guests of two of the most influential members of the Diet (the Japanese governing body — Congress-Parliament), both of whom had accompanied Prime Minister Sato on his trip to San Clemente (the Western White House in California) for the meeting with President Nixon.
On that visit Mr. Sato had asked to see me, just before his meeting with Mr. Nixon, but I was ill with a high fever at the time, and so Messrs. Rader and Gotoh represented me in a meeting with the Japanese Prime Minister. Mr. Sato then had asked if we would fly these two high ranking Congressmen, and eight Japanese newspaper representatives (who were part of the Japanese entourage) to our campus in Texas. These men had spent two nights on the Texas campus and enjoyed themselves immensely. They joined in on a sing-a-long by our students.
On this Monday night in Tokyo our party, including my daughter, Mr. and Mrs. Rader, and Mr. Gotoh, were the guests of these Congressmen at an elaborate Japanese style dinner.
But the BIG DAY was Wednesday. About eleven in the morning, we were driven to the House of Representatives office building, where Mr. Bunsei Sato (no relation to the Prime Minister, but a leader in the Diet), together with Mr. Keiwas Okuda, the other Diet Member who had visited our Texas campus, joined us and took us to the Japanese National Capitol Building.
There, Minister of Commerce and Industry Tanaka, considered to be the probable next Prime Minister, excused himself for about fifteen minutes from a very important conference, to meet me. He invited me to have a longer meeting with him on my next visit to Tokyo. I also met the Minister of Pollution (the official title uses a different word), the Secretary of the leading political party, and another top ranking Diet Member — a Mr. Ishii — whom Messrs. Rader and Gotoh met at San Clemente, a graduate of Stanford University, besides one or two other Diet Members. We had lunch in the Diet Building restaurant.
Then, a fourth Diet Member, Mr. Shionoya, whose son is in his second year at Ambassador College, Pasadena, joined us. And these four leading men of the Japanese Government accompanied us to the Prime Minister's official residence for my meeting with him.
Prime Minister Sato reminded me at the outset, that this was a very historic occasion. When I first had a meeting with him, in December, 1970, the newspaper headlines were blaring forth the news of the great riot against American forces on Okinawa. The Prime Minister had asked me to visit Okinawa, on my February 1971, trip — which I did, and wrote an article on my survey there in The PLAIN TRUTH. The Prime Minister thanked me for the help I had given, and reminded me that immediately following our meeting, which was in his private office, he was to step into an adjoining conference room where the U.S. Ambassador and staff were to exchange the ratification instruments with the Japanese Foreign Minister and staff, legally affirming the reversion of Okinawa back to Japan. This was the big moment in Prime Minister Sato's administration. We visited with him for some forty minutes, leaving at ten minutes to three. As we left, the United States Delegation were driving up. Their meeting was scheduled for three o'clock. It was the BIG NEWS on front pages next morning.
However, I must say candidly to our own inner family, general conditions in the world do not look good. They are definitely NOT heading for peace. The social conditions — the way the vast majority of people live — are simply revolting. Most areas of the world's cities are ugly, depressing, reflecting poverty, filth, and squalor.
When I think of the BEAUTY — the cleanliness — universal prosperity — the vigorous, healthy people with faces wreathed in happy smiles we shall see worldwide after a generation or two in the WORLD TOMORROW, I certainly do pray, as Jesus Christ instructed, "Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven."
I forgot to mention a MOST IMPORTANT program suggested to me by Prince Mikasa — but I shall include that in my Personal in The PLAIN TRUTH.
In Israel we have meetings scheduled with Abba Eban, the Foreign Minister — possibly another meeting with Mrs. Meir, besides many others. Then we have a meeting scheduled with the President of Romania, en route to our campus in England, and after a few days there, back to Pasadena Headquarters.
If ever this world NEEDED the message we are carrying to it worldwide, it is NOW! Ours is the powerful voice in the wilderness of confusion, friction between governments, wars, threats of more wars, and terribly unhappy living conditions among the overwhelming majority of earth's masses of humanity.
On this trip I have completely rewritten the booklet, "Why Were You Born?" It is now virtually a totally new booklet. I'll have it on the press soon after returning to Pasadena. Would you like a copy? Let me know.
Also I have written two more installments on a most important new book, to run first serially, a month at a time, in The PLAIN TRUTH — a parallel to H.G. Well's Outline of History. I am writing the outline of history, beginning with the very creation of the earth, and on through to ETERNITY — as recorded in the Bible. You'll get it in The PLAIN TRUTH.
Also I have spent many hours during this trip re-editing my autobiography, rewriting parts of it, adding other things that have come to mind since it was originally published. Going over it again, frankly I have decided that I have lived a most eventful life, and I honestly believe, on reviewing it, that this book contains much valuable instruction, inspiration, and interesting reading. It may take another month or two — for so far, I have only reviewed the first HALF of it — the book we published a few years back. That book was only about half of what had been run serially in The PLAIN TRUTH. In this new edition of the book, I want to include the second half, so far published only in The PLAIN TRUTH — and add one final chapter, bringing it up to the events of the present moment. It will probably contain about 1,000 pages or more.
So many people have been high-pressuring me to get out this new edition, I have felt compelled to work on it.
For more than an hour, now, we have been flying over rugged snow-capped mountains. Instead of crossing a mountain ridge, which might take fifteen minutes in our plane, we have been flying over the length of a continuously mountainous country. We are now over Turkey. We have to skirt completely around the Arab countries, in going to Israel. We will fly over Turkey until beyond Lebanon, then south over Cyprus, then back east into Lod Airport, Tel Aviv, Israel.
NEVER, I must remind you, was YOUR PART in this GREAT WORK more urgently needed than now. THANK YOU, from the heart for your generous part. And we need, even more, your constant and earnest PRAYERS FOR this WORK. Here come more snow covered mountains. It seems there is no end to them. In this letter I have taken time to just chat with you on the events of this trip in a personal, intimate way. Now I am rather fatigued, and will say good-bye, and rest awhile.