I was more than delighted to receive Swansong. Quite evidently, Bill transcribed the seminar on which the book is based with the love and attention that only a brother can lavish.
Fr Tony’s last seminar may have been his swan song but what he says is a mighty clarion call to us all to open our eyes and wake up. As a true master, Fr Anthony De Mello shows us “where to look” but never tells us “what to see”.
An oriental sage once said : “If a blind man walks a thousand miles to ask of another man where light is, he will tell him: ‘If you had eyes, light was there also where you came from. Without eyes, light will not be, no matter where you go’. Light is wherever eyes are - else there is nothing but darkness”.
But it is inherent in the human conditon, in this matrix we live in, that most of us are blind. We need a master to point us in the right direction. We then choose whether to follow the path to peace that passes all understanding or continue to exist within the confines of our conditioning.
As a human (mechanical) being I’d say that Anthony De Mello was taken away from us far too soon but deep in my heart I know that he sang all of his song and he sang it beautifully. Could he have given us further insights, untrammelled by rigid, doctrinal, lifeless formalisms had he lived longer? Perhaps. But what does it matter, his joyful voice still rings clear. Swansong exudes his humour and his love for humanity – the beauty of his being is still with us.
Barry Long said, “The living master never returns. He teaches the truth, he is in his own body, his own time. When that is finished, all that he had to say and do is said and done. If it weren't, he would not die. The body is the precise time allotted. There can be no return of J. Krishnamurti, Meher Baba, Ramana Maharshi or any living master of his time. The master never needs more time.”
Fr Tony’s teachings live on in his stories, books and the few, alas, videos we have of him dancing his dance. He was a floodlight of wisdom and divine inspiration for this world. He touched the hardest hearts, the confused, the dogmatic, the seeker. He continues to do so.
So I can only offer a big THANK YOU to his dear brother Bill (and his generous correspondents) for gifting us, in Swansong , with the authentic words of a rare mystic.