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The Mission of Folk-Souls

Lecture 3

Schmidt Number: S-2248

On-line since: 17th September, 2005

LECTURE 3

Study Guide: Souls of the Nations — Third Lecture ]

9th June, 1910.

In the course of these lectures we shall study matters which will, so to say, easily enter into the soul of each one, because each one will be able to interest himself in them intensely and directly. But as the whole would not otherwise be comprehensible, we must also make reflections which are necessary for the sake of completeness and of comprehension, and which will be a little more difficult than that which is, so to say, the central theme of our lectures. To-day, for instance, we are confronted with the necessity of glancing into the inner nature of those Beings of whom we have spoken in the two preceding lectures, the normal Folk-spirits.

We have already said what was necessary to characterize them outwardly: that they are Beings who are two stages higher than man, Beings who are working at the transformation of their etheric bodies, who are now at the present time engaged in transforming their etheric bodies into that which is called Life-spirit or Buddhi. Man is spun into the web of this work. In so far as the evolution of these Beings so progresses that man is woven into this evolution, the reflection of this Folk-spirit is expressed in human individuality itself, as the folk-character of the single human individual.

We must now look a little into the inner nature of such a Folk-soul. If we wish to throw light upon the present inner being of man, we find it necessary to picture it as being threefold, as being divided into:

The sentient-soul, which is, as it were, the lowest member of the inner human being,

The Intellectual-soul or Mind-soul, the central member, and

The Spiritual-soul, the highest member of the inner nature of the human being, in which the human ‘ I ’ is first actually brought to a state of consciousness.

In the spiritual-soul is first to be found that which is called human self-consciousness. Nevertheless the ‘ I ’ of man is active in all three parts of his inner life, in the sentient-soul as well as in the intellectual-soul or mind-soul, and in the spiritual-soul.

In the sentient-soul the ‘ I ’ is active in such a way that man is hardly aware of his ego. In the sentient-soul, therefore, he is thus far given up to all his desires and passions. The ‘ I ’ broods dully in what we call the sentient-soul. It first works itself out and begins to appear in the intellectual-soul or mind-soul, and only becomes quite apparent in the spiritual-soul.

If we wish to examine each of these three members of the human inner being separately, we must look upon them as three modifications, as three parts within the astral body. It certainly is the case, that these modifications, these three members of the astral body, prepare the transformation of the astral body itself, of the etheric body and of the physical body. But these transformations are still not what meets us as the actual human inner being or soul. The soul, the inner part of man; consists of three modifications of the astral body. The three modifications must make use of certain instruments, and these express themselves in such a way, that in the astral body the sentient-soul is a sort of instrument, in the etheric body the intellectual-soul or mind-soul, and in the physical body the spiritual-soul. Thus we can distinguish the human inner being from that which is the human envelope or covering; so that therefore the inner nature of man consists of three modifications of the astral body.

Just as in man the inner part, that in which the ‘ I ’ works and imprints itself, is represented by these three modifications of the astral body, so in those spiritual Beings whom we designate as Folk-spirits their actual inner part, or that which we may compare to the human inner part, is represented by three members, three modifications of the etheric body. Just as in man we distinguish sentient-soul, intellectual-soul, spiritual-soul, so in the Archangelic Beings, the normal Folk-spirits we must distinguish three modifications in the etheric body. As, however, these three modifications are not in the astral but in the etheric body they are quite different, essentially different from the three modifications in the soul-life of man. Hence also you must think of the form of consciousness, the whole soul-life of these Folk-spirits as being different from the soul-life of man. From an external description, therefore, we now press on as it were into the inner part of the soul of these Folk-spirits. It will not be quite easy but we must endeavor to cross this rubicon.

It will now be a case of starting out from some conception with which you are acquainted, a conception that bears some likeness to the inner life of the Folk-spirits. A man has not many such in his normal life, on the contrary, he has in his own consciousness extremely little of that which lives in the consciousness of the Folk-spirits. You may nevertheless form an idea of it if you will patiently follow with me the following considerations. You have all learnt at school that the three angles of a triangle are 180 deg., and you know that you could never learn that by any sort of external experience. I want you just to think of an iron or a wooden triangle; if now you measure with an instrument what the three angles together amount to, this external experience can never inform you that these three angles make 180 deg., but you will at once be informed, whether you draw these three angles or only imagine them, if you experience from within, that the three angles are 180 deg. You must realize it through the power of your own mind, from within. You need only carry out the following in thought. What I am now drawing is only drawn to represent the thought. In this figure you have strict proof that the three angles together make 180 deg.

 Diagram 1
Diagram 1
Click image for large view
 

If you once clearly visualize this figure in your mind, it will in every case bring this certainty; you may carry out the figure in thought, without externally drawing it. You thus perform an operation in pure thought, by the power of your own inner being; you need not go outside yourself. You may imagine for one moment, that there is no such thing as the so-called world of impressions, or what enters into man through the outer senses. Imagine the external world away, and space as being constructed in thought, then in this space the sum-total of the angles of all triangles will give 180 deg. In order to arrive at geometrical, mathematical knowledge it is not necessary for an outer object to approach your senses, it only needs inner experience, that which takes place in the consciousness itself. I have had to make use of this example, for it is the simplest and most practical, because people already know it, having learnt it at school. I might also give you the example of Hegel's logic, you would then also have a number of inner conceptions, but there you would find much with which you are unacquainted, for Hegel's logic is unknown to most people. By this you may therefore see how a man may arrive at knowledge merely from within, without being brought to this by anything external.

If you think of that which externally in the world is only attainable by mathematical construction, then you have some conception of how the consciousness of the Archangels works. A world such as appears to external man, a world of external colors and tones, they do not perceive at all. A Being of this kind never has these perceptions, it is never possible for him to touch a thing and thus receive impressions. But what he does experience may be thus expressed in words, ‘Something is now approaching me from a world which inspires me. This world has passed through my consciousness and has filled it.’

Now the Archangels are not Beings who can form mathematical concepts only; it is man who is so imperfect that he is only able by means of abstractions such as the truths of mathematics, to conceive of the activity of the Archangels. These truths appear normal to man, as well as to the Folkspirits. From this you may gather that the external physical world which man's senses bring before him, does not affect the Archangels at all. In that form in which the physical world appears to man, in which he receives impressions of it by means of his senses, it does not exist at all to the Archangels. If, therefore, you eliminate from your picture of the world all that is merely physical sensation, if you take away everything which you have received by means of external perceptions, you have then eliminated just what does not concern the Archangels. We shall therefore inquire, ‘What then still remains for the Archangels out of all that can also become human consciousness? What part of it exists for the Folk-spirits?’ Everything you experience in the sentient-soul as ordinary joy or ordinary grief brought about by the external world, all colors, sounds, in fact all sensible perceptions of the outer world, — none of this concerns these Beings at all. Therefore eliminate the whole contents of the human sentient-soul, and tell yourself that all that is in the picture of the world through man's possessing the sentient-soul, is of no importance to the Archangels, they do not work into that. Even one portion of the intellectual-soul is not an element of any significance to the Archangels, in so far as it is stimulated by outer impressions. That too, which is aroused externally, which a man works upon with his intellect and lives through in his feelings, that too, does not concern the Archangels. But in the intellectual-soul of man there are, however, certain things which man experiences in common with the Archangels. We can perceive quite clearly that such things come into the human intellectual-soul or mind-soul when we see how, for instance, what we call our moral ideals come to us. There would be no moral ideals if we were only able to have feelings, to feel joy and sorrow and to think about that which comes to us from the outer world by means of our sense-perceptions; true we might then be able to rejoice over the flowers in the field and also over a beautiful landscape, but our hearts would never be able to glow with enthusiasm for an ideal which cannot shine forth to us out of the external world, which we can inscribe in our soul and then follow with enthusiasm. But we must not only be aglow and feel in the sentient-soul, we must also give thought to the matter. The man who only feels and does not think, may indeed be an enthusiast but never a practical man. We must not absorb ideals into our sentient-soul from outside, but we must let them pour in out of the spiritual world, and work upon them in the intellectual-soul or mind-soul. The artistic, the architectural ideals and so on, are present in the intellectual-soul or mind-soul, and in the spiritual-soul. They are connected with that which a man cannot perceive outwardly, but which glows through and permeates his being inwardly, so that it becomes a part of his life. Observe the life of the peoples from epoch to epoch, how it has run its course, how new conceptions and new world-secrets have from time to time appeared in it. From whence could the Greeks have taken their conceptions of Zeus and Athena if they had only relied upon external perception? All that is contained in the wisdom, in the mythologies, religions, and sciences of the peoples came into them from within. So therefore we must see that one half of our inner life, half of our intellectual-soul or mind-soul and of our spiritual-soul is filled from within, and indeed exactly so far as man permeates himself inwardly with what has just been described. Thus far can the Archangels penetrate into the human inner being, and thus far also does the actual life of the Archangels extend. You must therefore eliminate from the inner life that which is received from outside through the sentient-soul and distinguish it from what is worked upon by the intellectual-soul or mind-soul feelings. Then, however, you still have that which we call our ‘ I ’. To us the ‘ I ’ is the highest member of our being; what we carry into our moral consciousness are ideals, moral, aesthetic, ideal thoughts. just as the outlook of man is closed as it were inwards, but can, by means of the senses, open itself outwards to the external world, so he can say that he perceives colors, sounds, cold and warmth, but he also has the consciousness that behind these perceptions of colors, sounds, warmth and cold, there is yet something real, and that is, the beings belonging to the animal, vegetable and mineral kingdoms. They are behind it all. So that a man can in the manner described think of the world as continued beyond. On this world beyond, however, the outlook is closed to ordinary people. Were this not the case, there could be no materialism. If a man could have a free outlook over the domain extending upward from the intellectual-soul and spiritual-soul, it would then be quite as foolish to doubt the existence of the spiritual world as it would be foolish to-day to doubt the existence of the animal, plant and mineral worlds.

Now remember how in man the ‘ I ’, his highest member, encloses within itself the sentient, the intellectual and spiritual-souls. With the Archangels it is the case that their soul-life begins by experiencing in the intellectual soul or mind-soul, and then goes up into the ‘ I ’, which then spreads itself out in a world of higher realms, in a realm of spiritual facts, in which it lives just as man lives in the realm of the animals, plants and minerals; so that we may say, we must indeed perceive that this Archangelic Being may have in his soul-life that which we call the human ‘ I ’, yet nevertheless we cannot say that the ‘ I ’ of the Archangels is of the same nature. The ‘ I ’ of man is not one and the same as the ‘ I ’ of the Archangels. The Archangel-’ I ’ is in fact two stages higher, so that the Archangel is through his ‘ I ’ rooted in a higher world.

Now just as man by means of his sense-perception looks at colors and hears sounds, so does the Archangel look down upon the world which includes the ‘ I ’ as objective truth, only that around that ‘ I ’ there is still gathered some of that part of the astral, which we human beings know in ourselves as intellectual-soul or mind-soul. Think of these Beings as gazing into a world which does not extend to the minerals, plants or animals. Think that instead of this, their vision, which is a spiritual one, is directed to their picture of the world, and that they perceive centers therein. These centers are the human egos, around which again is gathered something that appears as a sort of aura. You have then the picture of how the Archangelic Being looks down upon those personalities of the folk belonging to him and which constitute the people. His world consists of an astral field of perception in which there are certain centers; these centers, these central points, are the several human personalities, the several human egos. just therefore as to us, colors and sounds, warmth and cold are within our field of perception, and are for us the important world, so to the Archangelic Beings, to the Folk-spirits, we ourselves with a portion of our inner life are the field of perception, and just as we go into the outer world and work at it and transform it into our instruments, so are we the objects in so far as we belong to this or the other Folk-spirit-belonging to the scene of action of the Archangels or Folk-spirits.

Thus we have an insight, strange as it may sound, into a higher theory of cognition, a higher epistemology of the Archangels. This is completely different from the epistemology of man; what is data for the Archangels is quite different. What is data for man is all that is spread out in space and meets us through our senses, as color, sound, warmth, cold, hardness and softness; what is data for the Archangels is what appears within, in the field of human consciousness. That to them is a number of centers around which the inner experiences of men are woven, in so far as these experiences take place in the intellectual-soul or mind-soul; but their activity is relatively a higher one.

What then differentiates the world of the Archangels or Folk-souls? The world of man is differentiated by the fact that if he takes hold of a thing with his hand, he feels it to be either warm or cold. The Archangel experiences something similar when he meets with human individualities. He meets with some men whose souls have more inner activity, the contents of whose souls are richer, — these make a greater impression upon him. Others he finds to be lethargic, indolent, the contents of whose souls are poor, — these beings are to him as the world impression of warmth and cold are to the human soul. Thus is the Archangel's picture of the world specialized, and he can make use of the several persons and work for them, by weaving out of his own being that which has to guide the whole people.

But there is also another way in which the life of the Archangel is connected with the life of the particular people he is leading. just as a human being has an ascending and a descending period in his life, an ascending time of youth, and a descending time of old age, so does the Archangel experience in the rise and fall of the culture of a people, his youth and his old age.

We must now again look into the inner life of one of these Archangels. You will already have noticed, from what I have related, that what man receives from without, the Archangel receives from within; hence when the individuals belonging to a people appear as centers within him, the Archangel has the feeling that what comes to him thus, does, it is true, arise in his consciousness from within, but it is nevertheless foreign to him. This to him is just like the sudden ideas that flash into our consciousness. He is also affected in just the opposite way by that which in man is youth and old age. Man experiences his youth in feeling the members of his body to be fresh, he feels that they are improving and developing. In old age these members become relaxed, they refuse to work; that is something which a man feels as happening from within him. Now the Archangel feels, it is true, that everything is happening within him, but the rise and decline of a nation nevertheless seems like something foreign to him, as something about which he has the feeling that it is independent of him, with which therefore he has nothing directly to do, but which gives him the occasion to incarnate in some particular people at a certain time. When the possibility of incorporating himself occurs, when there is a people living in the ascending period of its life, in all its upward-striving power, then the Archangel goes down, just as a man goes down when he has lived out his life between death and a new birth. Thus the Archangel goes down into a people and embodies himself in it. In the same way too, does the Archangel feel his death, the necessity of withdrawing from the people in question, when the several perceptions, the centers which he perceives begin to become less productive, less active, when they begin to have fewer contents. Then comes the time when he forsakes that community of people and enters into his Devachan, into his life between death and a new birth, in order at a later opportunity to seek out in another way a community of people. Thus the youthful upward life of a people signifies the youth of its Folk-spirit, he perceives it as being a fresh, flowing element in which he dwells. The descending period of a people's life he perceives as a withering of the centers in his domain of perception.

That gives a sort of insight into the inner being of one of these Folksouls. If we recall all this to mind, we may say, that in certain respects such a Folk-soul is really rather far removed from an individual human life, for in each one of these, what is in the sentient-soul and in the lower part of the intellectual-soul is a domain into which the Folk-spirit, the Archangel does not reach. For a human being it is, however, something very real. A man feels keenly that it belongs to the most inward, the most intimate part of his own life. In a certain respect the Archangel-nature, the one which guides the people, is something which floats above the separate individual human beings. The personal things which a man experiences because he receives perceptions through his senses, are foreign to the Archangel who is guiding the people. But there are intermediaries, and it is important that we should understand that there are such intermediaries. They are the Beings we call Angels, who are between the Archangels and man. You must take this in the strictest sense of the words: Folk-spirits are Archangels, they are Spirits who have finished the transforming of their astral bodies into Spirit-self or Manas, and are now transforming their etheric body or life-body into Life-spirit. Just halfway between these Beings and man are the Angels. These are Beings who are occupied in remodeling their astral body into Spirit-self or Manas, but have not yet concluded their work. At the present time man is at the beginning of this work, the Angels are nearly at the end of it, but have in no wise finished it. Therefore these Beings come into closer contact with that which makes up the daily life of man. We may say that the Angels incline with their whole soul-nature towards what we call the astral body. For this reason they fully understand all the joy and sorrow the human personality may go through. But because on the other hand they extend much higher than the human ‘ I ’, because they possess a higher ‘ I ’, because they can take in part of the higher world, the world of their consciousness extends to that domain in which is to be found the sphere of consciousness of the Archangels. They are therefore really the intermediaries between the Archangels and the several human individuals. They on their part receive the commands of the Folk-spirits and convey them into the several souls, and by means of this agency is brought about what a single individual may do, not only for his own progress, his own evolution, but for his whole people.

In the life of a human being these two streams flow side by side. The one stream is that which brings him onward from one incarnation to the next, which is connected with his own concerns, with what he has above all to do so as to fulfill the duty which is to him the strictest, because most especially his own duty. He may not stand still, because he would then be allowing the germs for growth within him to lie fallow, if he did not trouble about them. That, however, is his own private affair, by attending to which he progresses from incarnation to incarnation. But that which he contributes to his own people, which belongs to the concerns of the people of his own particular nation is brought about through the inspiration of the Angels, who carry the commands of the Archangels to the several human beings.

We can therefore easily picture a people spread over a certain portion of the earth, and over this people the folk-aura, the etheric aura, and in this how the forces of the Folk-spirit work, and modify the etheric body of man according to the three types of force. That which is at work in this folk aura is the Archangel; we must think of him as being a higher Being, one standing two stages higher in evolution than man, floating over the whole people, and giving directions as to what this people as a whole has to fulfill. The Archangel knows what must be done during the upward period, during the fresh youth of the people; he knows what are the achievements to be brought about by the transition of this people from youth to old age, so that his impulses should have the right effect.

These great outlines are fashioned by the Archangel; but here, upon this physical plane, the individual human beings must work, here they must take care that these great aims are realized. Between the individual human beings and the Archangels there are the Angels as intermediary beings, they impel the man to the place to which he must go, so that in the feelings of the people should arise that which corresponds to the great ordinances of the Archangels. You will form a correct picture of it, if you take what I have been describing not merely as an allegory, but as representing as nearly as possible the reality.

Now the whole tissue spun by the Archangels is influenced by those whom we call the abnormal* Archangels, the Spirits of Language, as I yesterday described. We have also described how the abnormal* Spirits of Personality, the Archai, work. We may now glance at the field in which the Archangel gives his orders, in which he distributes the missions which are to be carried further by the Angels into the separate individuals. The Archangels can, however, also operate into the domain of the abnormal Spirits of Personality, and it may happen that in the mutual co-operation of the Archangels with the abnormal Spirits of Personality, — because the latter are pursuing quite different objects, — that in certain respects the measures taken by the Archangels are crossed. When this occurs, when these abnormal Spirits of Personality come into collision with the measures taken by the Archangels, we can then perceive that within a single nation groups are formed, having special tasks. The action of the Spirits of Personality is externally visible when, within a certain people, groups are formed having special tasks. This may last for several centuries. For instance, in the very country in which we now have specially to work at Anthroposophy, in Germany, you have seen for centuries this play of the Archangel of the Germans in co-operation with the sometimes opposing separate Spirits of Personality. In the division of the collective German people into the smaller peoples, you have an interplay of the abnormal Spirits of Personality with the Archangel.

[* NOTE: As the constant interchange of name is confusing, the reader is referred to the synopsis. The term abnormal is applied sometimes to the hierarchic rank abandoned, sometimes to the new hierarchy taken on.]

Such peoples are not so much centralized, they pay more attention to the cultivation of the individualities. This has in certain respects its good side, because in this way a great variety, many different shades of folk character can find their expression.

You may, however, take the other case, in which not the abnormal Spirit of Personality but the normal Spirit of Personality, who expresses himself in the Spirit of the Age becomes, so to speak, more important for a certain epoch than he otherwise is in the ordinary course of things.

Therefore, when we look at a people, we are looking at the Archangel as its first power. Then the Spirit of the Age comes and gives his orders to the Archangel, the latter passes them on to the Angels, and these convey them to the separate individuals. Now because one only sees, as a rule, what is nearest to one, so in this combined action one sees the actions of the Archangel as being the most important. It may, however, occur that the Spirit of the Age has to give out more weighty, more important orders, that he is, so to speak, compelled to take something away from the Archangel, because he must detach a portion of the people in order that the task of the age, the mission of the Spirit of the Age may be fulfilled. In such a case bodies of people separate themselves from the rest. The Spirit of the Age then visibly gains the upper hand over the influence of the Archangel. A case in point occurred when the Dutch people split away from the foundations which it had in common with the German people. Holland and Germany had originally one Archangel in common, and the separation occurred because the Spirit of the Age severed off a portion at a given time, and then passed on to this portion that which has become the important concern of the modern Spirit of the Age. All you may read in Dutch history — for history is in reality only an external expression, a maya, for what is happening inwardly — is only the reflection of an inner event. Thus in this case we can see the splitting of the Dutch people from the collective German people taking place externally; but the inner kernel is, that the Spirit of the Age required an instrument with which to carry out his overseas mission. The whole mission of the Dutch people was a mission of the Spirit of the Age, and it was split off for the purpose of giving him the possibility of carrying out something important at a certain time in history. What is described by historians is only outer maya, which hides the actual facts more than it reveals them.

There are other cases in which you can meet with what is so striking in this connection, namely, that a portion of a people had to sever itself from the common folk; that is the case with the Portuguese people. You may look in vain for other reasons in their case, you will find that it is here solely a question of a victory of the Spirit of the Age over the Archangel. If you go through the several events you will find that the opportunity was here made use of to form a special people, — there were not many such opportunities. The Spanish people and the Portuguese formed one mother folk. The outer reasons perhaps were, that the rivers were only navigable as far as to the Portuguese frontiers; there were no other external reasons. On the other hand there was the inner reason, that those tasks had to be fulfilled which were the specific tasks of the Portuguese, and which were different from the tasks of the combined Spanish people. There we see the Spirits of the Age for a time developing a more intense activity than they usually display. We see the harmony which had prevailed till then replaced by something else. We see the Spirit of the Age, instead of communicating his orders to the Archangel, taking a direct part in the history of the people, and we see how the other Spirits make use of this opportunity to incorporate themselves. When such a people is split off, then the Spirit of the Age for a time, in the first enthusiasm which has permeated the several persons, discharges the functions of the Archangel so much, that hardly anything else appears of the severance than a hurry and bustle within this people. One sees the hurrying and the urging, the activity which comes from the mission of the Spirit of the Age. Then, however, the possibility arises for a normal and an abnormal Archangel to incorporate themselves in the severed part of the people. Thus we see the growth of the Dutch and the Portuguese peoples who then received their own normal and abnormal Archangels. In that which incorporated itself here, in the difference in the temperament of the people expressed in the several personalities, we see the work of those spiritual Beings whom we have named. We see the work of these spiritual Beings in a very wonderful manner and we then recognize that what takes place outwardly in history is only a result of their activity. Gradually the saying, that the external world is maya or illusion, assumes more definite significance.

What happens in external history is only the outer reflection of the spiritual, of the super-sensible Beings, just as the outer man is only the outer reflection of the inner man. That is why I had to say, and it must be emphasized again and again, that the saying ‘The world is maya’ is of the very greatest importance; but it is not sufficient to emphasize it in an abstract way, rather should one be in a position to carry it out in detail.

Now we have seen that yet other Spirits and Hierarchies are active in what we call the world. We have spoken of the normal and abnormal Archangels. The abnormal Archangels have revealed themselves to us as being actually Spirits of Form or Powers, only they are those who have renounced a certain portion of the attributes of their evolution. We may then ask, How is it with the normal Spirits of Form? We perceive the normal Spirits of Form as being four degrees above man. In our next lecture we shall have a little more to say about them. These normal Spirits of Form are Beings four stages higher than man. The Hierarchies we mentioned yesterday do not end with the Spirits of Form, with whom we concluded the ascending line. Above these there are the Spirits of Motion, the Dynamis, or Mights; higher still there are the Beings we call Kyriotetes, Dominions or Spirits of Wisdom. You will find these different spiritual Beings enumerated in my Occult Science, as well as in my writings about the Akashic Record.

Now you can understand that the law of renunciation, of remaining behind, applies also to the higher Spirits, therefore that the Spirits of Motion may also remain behind with certain attributes, — Spirits of Motion, who are five stages higher than man, — that certain Spirits of Motion have so remained in human evolution, as if they were now only Spirits of Form or Powers. These are, as regards certain attributes, really Spirits of Motion, and in respect of other attributes, regarding which they have made renunciation, they are Spirits of Form; so that we have normal Spirits of Form, four stages higher than man, and other Spirits working on the same ground on which are the Spirits of Form, but who are really Spirits of Motion. That is therefore a domain in which the normal and abnormal Spirits of Form, the backward Spirits of Motion, work together, just as we have found a domain in which the normal and abnormal Archangels work together. Through this co-operation, however, something takes place which closely concerns man; by means of it the shaping of what we call the human races takes place, which we must distinguish from the peoples.

If we consider the matter in this way, we shall not have a confused idea of it, but one that is elastic; we must not confuse all this. A nation is not a race, the concept of a nation has nothing to do with that of a race. A race may divide itself into many different nations, races are different communities from nations. We are certainly right in speaking of a German, a Dutch, a Norwegian nation, but we speak of a Germanic race. Now what acts in the idea of a race? The Beings whom we describe as normal Spirits of Form or Powers act therein in combination with those Beings whom we have learnt to know as the abnormal Spirits of Form, but who in reality are Spirits of Motion having the mission of Spirits of Form. That is why mankind is divided into races. That which makes man the same over the whole globe, which makes each man, irrespective of the race to which he belongs, a member of the whole human kingdom, is brought about by the normal Spirits of Form. But that which plays a part over the whole earth and divides the whole of humanity into races, is brought about by the abnormal Spirits of Form, who have denied themselves so that there should not be one humanity only upon the earth but a variety of people.

Thus we arrive at the subsoil, so to say, at the ground of which the separate individual peoples first arise. In this way we succeed in surveying into the field belonging to the Spirits of Form and as abnormal Spirits of Form to bear one humanity, and that the belated Spirits of Motion enter into the field belonging to the Spirits of Form and as abnormal Spirits of Form divide up all humanity upon the globe into the several races. When we look into what these Spirits actually want, when we study the aims and objects of these normal and abnormal Spirits of Form, we shall understand what they wish to bring about with the human races, and how through these a foundation is created for what arises out of them. If we then study a people itself we shall have understood and comprehended it.




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