In response to:

Blissing Out in Houston from the December 13, 1973 issue

To the Editors:

In reference to Ms. Gray and Mr. Kelley’s efforts “Blissing Out In Houston,” [NYR December 13] I have only one comment.

Guru Maharaj Ji is the source of so much attention for one reason only. We should not forget the reason. He is revealing God to every human being who requests it. The practical Knowledge of the Self that Guru Maharaj Ji is offering makes Him of some utility to us. Without the Knowledge, there is no story.

It is very simple. If the experience. He reveals is true, we can appreciate Guru Maharaj Ji. Even further, every human being who feels sincerely interested to experience permanent peace should ask for the Knowledge. If the experience He reveals is not true, then we should not bother ourselves with Guru Maharaj Ji any more.

But we will find that truth speaks for itself, and persists, even if we wish to observe it away. Those who are experiencing are to be called wise.

Joan Apter

Old Westbury, New York

Francine du Plessix Gray and Ken Kelley replies:

Like many other anguished persons reacting against the violence of the past decade, Ms. Apter expresses her interest in “experiencing permanent peace.” As American writers who have spoken out numerous times in the past years for nonviolence, we suggest that the most important single factor in any community’s search for achieving peace is a competence for self-criticism; and that Ms. Apter’s inability to censure the attempted murder of a critic by two of her colleagues specifically manifests that blind obedience and that inaptitude for self-judgment which are at the heart of history’s most violent commitments.

This Issue

January 24, 1974