Arrival in the United States of America – Washington D.C.
Sant Kirpal Singh visited the United States from 1 September 1963 to 29 January 1964.
In the great lounge of New York International Airport during the early hours of the morning of September 1, 1963 disciples from all over the United States and from Canada awaited the coming of Sant Kirpal Singh – His aircraft was long overdue.
At long last, at 3:30 a.m., the flight from Ireland arrived. Sant Kirpal Singh stepped from the aircraft and was immediately surrounded by a huge crowd of disciples and press men. For many people it was a physical reunion with their beloved Master after eight years of separation. All waited in the reception lounge for the next flight to Washington, D.C., the first venue of Kirpal Singh's American tour. At 7 a.m. Kirpal Singh, now accompanied by nearly forty followers, boarded the aircraft for Washington, D.C.
The reception at the National Airport in Washington, D.C., is best described in the words of an eyewitness and disciple:
The time of Sant Kirpal Singh's arrival was drawing near. He was to arrive at 8:37 a.m. At about 8 o'clock we gathered at the airport. People had come from different parts of the U.S.A. and Canada. As we gathered at the gate where He was to land, the crowd grew larger and larger. We began to introduce ourselves. There was a man who had come all the way from Panama. Another was from Malaya. The cities of Toronto and Hamilton in Canada were represented. It was as if our great spiritual family had gathered to meet their Father. I began to think of the greatness of this Master. I remembered that several weeks earlier I had met a man, who was an initiate of the Master, who had journeyed to Washington, D.C., all the way from Cali, Colombia. He spoke of how people in South America had seen visions of Kirpal Singh. And I, in my search for truth, had also met people in the U.S.A. who had also seen the radiant form of this Master when in meditation. And even before they knew that such a soul walked the face of this earth in human form. And now I was soon to gaze upon his face.
Many disciples were waiting for His arrival. There were also some Scottish bagpipers who were to play for Him as He descended from the plane. It was almost time! As we waited for the plane the air was suddenly filled with the music of bagpipes. We turned and saw the Scots pipers marching down the hall towards us in their colorful uniforms, playing their unique music. Then the plane began to taxi up to our gate. The door was opened and we rushed to meet our beloved Master. Someone rolled out the red carpet and soon the Master was descending the stairs. Movies and photographs were being taken. The crowd surrounded the stairway. Then I gazed upon His countenance. His white turban and brown skin formed a picture in my mind that I will never forget. He stopped from time to time, as He descended the stairway, and extended His hands in a prayerlike position towards each one of us. I had read so often before how disciples had described their Master's face as being beautiful. Now I knew what they meant.
He had now descended the steps. He noticed the red carpet at the bottom of the steps and shook His head. Later I heard that He had said that He was a simple man, and that we might use our money for a more noble cause. The red carpet was not for Him, and He walked along beside it rather than on it. Now He was shaking hands with those who had come to the airport to greet Him. As He came closer to me, His eyes met mine and I felt that He looked into the depths of my soul. They were the kindest eyes I have ever looked into. They twinkled with the nectar of love. He extended His hand and I quickly grasped it."
In Washington, D.C. He was invited to the Capitol and introduced to a large number of Senators and Members of the House of Representatives.
During His twenty-seven day stay in Washington, Sant Kirpal Singh gave a total of eighteen public talks. Some were given at private residences, others at the Friends Meeting House; the Sylvan Theatre; the Theosophical Society; the Perpetual Building; the Washington Post Building; the House of Inspiration, (Vienna, Virginia); the Wesley Theological Seminary (American University); Levering Hall (Johns Hopkins University); Brookmont Baptist Church; the Unitarian Church; and the Young Man Christian Association.
Eight further talks, of a more informal nature, were given at the residence of Mr. T. S. Khanna. A press conference held at the National Press Club was attended by representatives of five leading newspapers.
While in Washington, Sant Kirpal Singh made five radio broadcasts, which included a recording made for the "Voice of America" in English and Hindi for retransmission to India. He also gave a broadcast on the nationwide C.B.S. network and gave complete coverage of His spiritual mission in the world. He made two appearances on television, and His message of love and hope reached an even wider audience.
His Excellency, Mr. B. K. Nehru, Ambassador of India, had a long discussion on the World Fellowship of Religions and the Science of the Soul with Sant Kirpal Singh. Mr. Nehru stated that the mission of Sant Kirpal Singh was a tremendous step towards world peace and brotherhood, and could well prove the answer to the present unrest and conflicts in the world. The Master visited the Indian Embassy and spoke to officials and their wives on the theme of self-realization and God-realization.
He visited the Naval Academy at Annapolis and also called on the German, Afghanistan and Argentinian Ambassadors, all of whom showed great interest in the Master's teachings and the mission of the World Fellowship of Religions. He was also welcomed to the Headquarters of the Seventh Day Adventists in Washington by Mr. and Mrs. Roy Anderson, and discussed the W.F.R. with Adventist members and friends.
Senator Kennedy, in a long talk with Kirpal Singh, welcomed the aims and ideals of the World Fellowship of Religions. He was greatly impressed by the many-sided purpose of the whole Tour.
Kirpal Singh was also received by the Honourable Lewis Mumford, Chief Librarian of the Library of Congress, who was also immensely interested in His teaching and mission.
Reported by members of the touring group
In Washington D.C. Sant Kirpal Singh recieved a letter from India: "Don't get lost in the love of Americans, and don't forget us."
I gave them only two days' notice when I left India. On the evening two days before I had to leave I told them that I'm going. (They came in thousands to see the Master at the airport.) On planes and on trains – they ran up! There were so many people. Even with my leaving suddenly, it was difficult to manage the throng, the multitude, gathered there. (There was a large crowd.) In Delhi there were more crowds. It was at Bombay, you see. We are prisoners on the planes; you cannot be let out to see anybody or meet anybody. Even so, they had to arrange something: "All right, everyone should just stand by; I’ll pass by them." They had to arrange it. There was no other alternative for the people in Bombay. They are right, too, in what they wrote. But I’m not lost anywhere. I quite appreciate the love that God has given you, and given them as well.
The day before I left India I gave a talk and said, "Wouldn't you like your brothers in the West to be benefitted? If so, raise your hands. You have been enjoying this privilege for so long, and now your brothers in the West want me. Would you not spare me for a few days?" And they would not say it. They were sobbing and crying when I told them that. Then I said, "All right, whoever is in favour of my going, raise your hand." Naturally they had to raise their hands, you see.
Sant Kirpal Singh