The first edition of A Soul's Safari sold out almost immediately, but before printing the second edition we were keen to have Miss Pfeifer add a few more chapters to the end, bringing the safari up to date, as it were.
The author graciously responded by writing "Reflections," describing the process of self-discovery that began from her very first moment in the presence of the living Master.
Miss Pfeifer has graciously presented her interesting manuscript to us and we are happy to publish it.
Many people are subconsciously in search of the Truth and, while pursuing some project, seemingly stumble onto the Path. Such was the experience of the author, who was gainfully employed in Hollywood, California, in which occupation she also socialized with many of the prominent movie stars. Being interested in "freedom" and not realizing that it was freedom of the soul that she was seeking, the title of the book and the movie, that she contacted Mrs. Adamson and undertook a six-month adventure into the wilds of Africa. During this time she enjoyed the beauties of nature and experienced many hardships too, in the process.
In the course of this adventure she learned about the living Master in India and arranged to visit this place on her way back to California. That meeting with the Master and what followed is vividly described by the author.
In the autumn of 1967 I was a volunteer for a Los Angeles organization that provided escorts to take visiting dignitaries to the sites of the city. Deciding that she, too, would like to meet the distinguished personage to whom I had been assigned, my sister Karol joined me in my VW "limousine" and we headed to a Wilshire Boulevard hotel. There a grandly turbaned and bearded Narain Singh, the first Indian Sikh I had ever met, greeted us in the lobby.
We were at Universal City studios, the tourist attraction that our guest had most wanted to see, when it was time for lunch. At a snack bar Mr. Singh ordered a cheese sandwich, the kind that comes wrapped in cellophane and contains nothing but one lonely looking piece of cheese listlessly lying between two slices of fluffy white bread. After consuming half of it, he folded the remainder carefully into his napkin and stashed it "neatly in a coat pocket. First he smiled at the pointed stares of wonder, compassion and concern for his health and welfare that my sister and I had been at a loss to hide, then he chuckled merrily. His manner was so gentle and so soft spoken that we had to strain to hear him tell us that it was against his religion to eat meat, that we must not worry about him since he had had more than enough nourishment, and that it was also against his religion to waste food. His dinner, he confided, would be enhanced by the other half of what, to us, seemed to be an embarrassingly dull sandwich. Equally embarrassing all of a sudden were the trash cans filled with unwanted edibles that dotted the fast-food alcove. The aura of quiet humility that surrounded Narain Singh engulfed my sister and me so strongly that for hours after we had bid adieu to our Sikh friend at his hotel, we talked about the intensity and kindness of the man and his nonviolent, vegetarian way of life that was so extraordinary to us.
More exciting, and more immediate to us, though, was that Mr. Singh, a newspaper editor, had traveled to Los Angeles not from somewhere in India but from his hometown of Nairobi, , Kenya. When I had announced to him that, three months hence, I would be departing for Nairobi myself, he had elicited from me a solemn promise to contact him on my arrival there in January of 1968.
Karol and I had laughed at Mr. Singh's low hum of recognition and approval when I had explained the purpose of my forthcoming safari-which in Swahili means any journey-to Kenya. I was going to visit two remarkable people living in the bush, who were at that very moment awaiting news from me concerning my exact time of arrival.
Millions have read Born Free, Living Free and Forever Free, the hooks about a pet lioness called Elsa who was successfully returned to the wild. Millions have seen the films based on these true stories. In the fall of 1967 I was making final plans to visit Joy Adamson, who wrote the books, and her game warden husband, George Adamson.
George Adamson was born on an indigo plantation in Dholpur, India, that same Dholpur State mentioned by Maharaj Sawan Singh in Spiritual Gems as the place where Swami Ji's grandfather, Seth Maluk Chand, was a diwan (a judge or some high officer). George's father was an engineer who planned the Dholpur Railway and the family spent their summers in Simla.
When George was about ten his father bought a small coffee plantation in Kenya, the country in which George would later work as a plowman, a sisal plantation hand, a barman, a milk roundsman and a trader in goats, beeswax and honey. He worked for the government service as a locust control officer, made roads, was a professional hunter, mined mica and prospected for gold before becoming, in 1932, a warden in Kenya's newly established game department.
Born in Austrian Silesia, Joy Adamson was raised in Vienna. Before she could read or write she mastered the piano. She studied metal work. She designed posters and book jackets, later fashions She helped to excavate a prehistoric site. She took singing lessons, art history and life drawing, and from a sculptor in Troppau she learned woodcarving. This involved a study of anatomy and piqued her curiosity to investigate further, to venture into courses in psychological motivation, physical structure, psychoanalysis, and finally medicine.
En route to Kenya in 1937 Joy met and thereafter married a Swiss botanist. From 1938 to 1943, while on safari with her scientist husband, she painted the indigenous flora of East Africa, amassing a stunning collection of some 700 botanical paintings that now hang in the Nairobi National Museum. She received the Grenfell Gold Medal from England's Royal Horticultural Society for her work, and her 1944 paintings of the coral fish of the Indian Ocean reefs were purchased by the Mombasa municipal government.
The Adamson’s met in Kenya's Northern Frontier District, George's territory at the time, and after they were married in 1944, Joy undertook the monumental task of recording on canvas, in full native regalia, representatives of Kenya's tribes. Slightly more than ten years later, having worked with fifty-four tribal communities, Joy had completed 700 priceless water color portraits, which found their way to President Jomo Kenyatta's state house and the Nairobi National Museum. A portion of this unequaled work has been duplicated in her book, The Peoples of Kenya.
Shauri mungu means in Swahili "it is the will of God," and so it was that, in January, 1956, the lion cub Elsa came into the Adamsons' lives. Stationed at that time in Isiolo, in Kenya's 120,000-square-mile area of desert desolation known as the Northern Frontier District, Joy and George reared their lioness-born free in the East African wilderness-v-as a pet.
When the cub outgrew her environment, the Adamsons elected a course of action that would alter forever their lives and Elsa's. Instead of shipping Elsa to a zoo, the Adamsons chose to return her to her natural habitat. To that end Joy and George launched the long and arduous process of teaching Elsa how to kill, how to defend herself and how to survive in the wilderness. They were so successful that, in 1960, Elsa mated with a wild lion, producing three cubs. When the young were little more than a year old, Elsa died, but by then she and her human mentors had riveted universal attention on Africa and the plight of the world's wildlife.
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