Hilary's business is threatened with disaster because of his attempt to introduce into it his spiritual ideals and occult methods. He has engaged as controller of his machinery, Strader, who is generally known to be a failure because of his impractical inventions. With him comes a group of similar “cranks.” Hilary's old manager is in despair.
Johannes is a prey to delusion and loves to wander in his own dreamland. He is warned by Maria and Benedictus. Capesius, in a moment of clairvoyance gets a glimpse of Johannes' inner mood, and is so alarmed that he decides that there can be no blending of spiritual gifts with earthly things, and he withdraws from Hilary's group and goes to the old mystic Felix. Maria urges Johannes to discriminate between truth and self-delusion which can be done by the study of elemental sprites.
The dance of gnomes and sylphs.
The Youth of Johannes appears. It is in despair because it is separated from Johannes. Lucifer tries to console it with promises of human wisdom and love of beauty. Theodora offers divine wisdom.
Arguments on plans of action and occult powers, during which Ahriman glides stealthily across the stage to bring dissension and confusion of thought among the speakers, who are ignorant of his presence.
Felix speaks on mysticism.
The appearance in spirit form of Maria and Benedictus to help Strader, and of Ahriman to thwart him. There is a repetition of Strader's part in Scene 2.
Similar discussions between Hilary's manager and Romanus. Ahriman had succeeded in separating the various mystics. (see Strader's vision on p. 268.)
Romanus makes a great impression upon the manager.
Johannes and his double.
Ahriman scoffs at the Guardian of the Threshold. Strader with Maria and Benedictus. The vision of the latter is troubled.
The Spirit World.
This scene needs careful meditation and some knowledge of the author's system. Attention should be given to the indications of the planetary spheres — Mercury, Venus, Sun, Jupiter, and Saturn — to which in turn we may expand after death. Heed should be paid to the warning given by the Guardian of the Threshold.
Lucifer here appears as a beneficent guide; so, too, the Other Philia.
The Spirit World. The same remarks apply. Capesius is struck by the figures of his previous incarnations, as shown in the former plays. The Guardian of the Threshold will allow an even earlier incarnation to appear.
Theodora's quotation refers to Scene 9 in ‘The Soul's Probation.’
and 8: The earlier incarnations in Egypt giving the key to the four plays, and showing the origin of development of the different characters.)
Shows in a remarkable way how the future development of the Baldes and Capesius is going to proceed. The concluding speech of the hierophant fore-shadows the approach of a new Era when candidates for initiation will get the hidden light independently and not under the hypnotic suggestion of the guiding priest.