RAMPA: FUTURE PAST-FUTURE PERFECT Two complete and corrected books by Lobsang Rampa: As It Was and I Believe. I AM FOREVER walking upon these shores between the sand and the foam. The tides will erase my footprints and the foam will flee the scurrying winds. But the sea and the shore will remain forever. Once I filled my hand with mist. Then I opened it and lo, the mist was a worm. And I closed and opened my hand again, and behold there was a bird. And again I closed and opened my hand, and in its hollow stood a man with a sad face, turned upward. And again I closed my hand, and when I opened it there was naught but mist. But I heard a song of exceeding sweetness. It was but yesterday I thought myself a fragment quivering without rhythm in the sphere of life. Now I know that I am the sphere, and all life in rhythmic fragments moves within me. They say to me in their awakening, "You and the world you live in are but a grain of sand upon the infinite shore of an infinite sea." And in my dream I say to them, "I am the infinite sea, and all worlds are but grains of sand upon my shore." The first word of God was a man. We were fluttering, wandering, longing creatures a thousand thousand years before the sea and the wind in the forest gave us words. Now how can we express the ancient of days in us with only the sounds of our yesterdays? The Sphinx spoke only once, and the Sphinx said, "A grain of sand is a desert, and a desert is a grain of sand; and now let us all be silent again." I heard the Sphinx, but I did not understand. Long did I sleep in the dust of Egypt, silent and unaware of the seasons. Then the sun gave me birth, and I rose and walked upon the banks of the Nile, singing with the days and dreaming with the nights. And now the sun treads upon me with a thousand feet that I may lie again in the dust of Egypt. But behold a marvel and a riddle! The very sun that gathered me cannot scatter me. Still erect am I, and fleet of wing do I soar above the Great River. I AM FOREVER.