Four Mystery Plays
The Soul's Awakening
PERSONS, FIGURES, AND EVENTS
The experiences of soul
and spirit portrayed in this play are to be conceived as following,
at about a year's interval, those delineated in ‘The Guardian
of the Threshold.’
- REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ELEMENT OF SPIRIT:
- Benedictus, the personality in whom a
number of his ‘pupils’ recognize the sage who knows the
deep spiritual connection of earthly events. In my earlier soul
pictures ‘The Portal of Initiation’ and ‘The Soul's
Probation,’ he is portrayed as the Hierophant of the Sun-Temple;
in ‘The Guardian of the Threshold’ he represents that
spiritual movement which
seeks to substitute the actual spiritual life of modern times for
the merely traditional views upheld therein by the Mystic Brotherhood.
In ‘The Soul's Awakening’ Benedictus must no longer be
conceived only as a sage who has authority over his pupils but also
as having his own soul's destiny interwoven with theirs.
- Hilary True-to-God, the adept in traditional spiritual life,
which, in his case, is accompanied by individual spirit-experience.
He is the same individuality who appears in ‘The Soul's
Probation’ as Grand Master of a Mystic Brotherhood.
- The Manager of Hilary's business of sawmills.
- Hilary's Secretary. He appears in ‘The Guardian
of the Threshold’ as Frederick Clear-Mind.
- REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ELEMENT OF DEVOTION:
- Magnus Bellicosus named Germanus in ‘The Portal
of Initiation.’ In ‘The Soul's Probation’
and in the ‘Guardian of the Threshold’ he is the Preceptor
of a Mystic Brotherhood.
- Albertus Torquatus named ‘Theodosius’ in
‘The Portal of Initiation.’ He appears in the
‘Soul's Probation’ as the First Master of Ceremonies
of the Mystic Brotherhood.
- Professor Capesius appearing in ‘The Soul's
Probation’ as First Preceptor.
- Felix Balde, representing in ‘The Portal of
Initiation’ a kind of Nature-mysticism, but here, a subjective
mysticism. He appears as Joseph Keane in ‘The Soul's
- REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ELEMENT OF WILL:
- Romanus who is here re-introduced under the
same name used for him in ‘The Portal of Initiation’
because it expresses the inner state of being to which he has worked
upwards during the years which elapse between ‘The Portal of
Initiation’ and the ‘Awakening.’ In ‘The
Guardian of the Threshold’ the name given him of Frederick
Trustworthy is the one by which he is supposed to be known in the
physical world, and the name is used there because his inner life
has very little to do with the events represented. In ‘The
Soul's Probation’ he appears as Second Master of Ceremonies
in the medieval Mystic Brotherhood.
- Doctor Strader, the individual appearing in ‘The
Soul's Probation’ as the Jew, Simon.
- The Nurse of Doctor Strader, the individual called Mary
Steadfast in ‘The Guardian of the Threshold.’ In
‘The Portal of Initiation’ she is known as ‘The
Other Maria’ because the imaginative perception of Johannes
Thomasius constructs, under her guise, an imaginative picture of
certain nature-forces. Her individuality appears in ‘The
Soul's Probation’ as Bertha, Keane's daughter.
- Dame Balde who appears in ‘The Soul's Probation’
as Dame Keane.
- REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ELEMENT OF SOUL:
- Maria whose individuality appears in ‘The Soul's
Probation’ as the Monk.
- Johannes Thomasius whose individuality appears in ‘The
Soul's Probation’ as Thomas.
- Hilary's wife.
- BEINGS FROM THE SPIRIT WORLD:
- BEINGS OF THE ELEMENT OF HUMAN SPIRIT:
- Philia, Astrid, & Luna, The
spiritual beings through whose agency the human soul-forces
are connected with the cosmos.
- The ‘Other’ Philia, representing the element
of Love in the world to which the spirit-personality belongs.
- The Soul of Theodora whose individuality appears in
‘The Soul's Probation’ as Cecilia, foster daughter
of Keane and sister of Thomas.
- The Guardian of the Threshold.
- The Double of Johannes Thomasius.
- The Spirit of Johannes Thomasius' Youth.
- The Soul of Ferdinand Fox in the realm of Ahriman (Scene
12). He appears as Ferdinand Fox only in ‘The Guardian of the
- The personalities of Benedictus and
Maria also appear as mental experiences, to wit: In the second
scene as those of Johannes Thomasius, in the third scene as those of
Strader. Maria appears thus to Johannes Thomasius in Scene 9.
- The individualities of Benedictus,
Hilary Trueto-God, Magnus Bellicosus, Albertus Torquatus, Strader,
Capesius, Felix Balde, Dame Balde, Romanus, Maria, Johannes Thomasius
and Theodora appear in the spirit-realm in the fifth and sixth
scenes of this play as ‘souls’; and in the temple
in the seventh and eighth scenes as personalities living in a far
In connection with
‘The Soul's Awakening’ it is advisable again to draw attention
to a point already made with reference to the preceding soul-pictures.
Neither the events of soul and spirit nor the spiritual beings are intended
to be mere symbols or allegories. Anyone interpreting them in this manner
would quite misconceive the real being of the spiritual world. Even
in the mental experiences which are shown (in the second, third,
and tenth scenes) nothing merely symbolical is portrayed. They are genuine
experiences of the soul, as real for a person who has access to the
spirit world as are persons and events in the world of the senses. Such
a person will find ‘The Awakening’ a thoroughly realistic
soul-picture. Were the case one of mere symbolism or allegory, I should
certainly have left these scenes unwritten.
In response to various
questions, I had once more attempted to add a few ‘supplementary
remarks’ in explanation of this ‘soul-picture’; but
as on former occasions, I again suppress the attempt. I feel averse
to adding material of this kind to a picture intended to speak for itself.
Such abstract considerations have no part to play in the conception
and working-out of the picture, and would only be a discordant element.
The spiritual realities, here set forth, present themselves to the soul
as convincingly as physical things present themselves to our bodily
perception. Yet, as is natural, an unclouded spiritual vision views
the beings and events shown in pictures painted by spiritual perception
otherwise than the physical perceptions would behold the same beings
and events. On the other hand, it must be said that the manner in which
spiritual events array themselves before the perception of the soul
determines alike the tendency and construction of such pictures.