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How the Spiritual World Interpenetrates the Physical

Rudolf Steiner Archive & e.Lib Document

Sketch of Rudolf Steiner lecturing at the East-West Conference in Vienna.

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How the Spiritual World Interpenetrates the Physical

On-line since: 30th April, 2015

Christ and the Human Soul

A Course of Four Lectures
12–16 July 1914
given at Norrköping, Sweden


This Synopsis is only for the possible convenience of readers, and has no claim to be authoritative.

LECTURE 1. The Soul element begins with the Earth. Two religious gifts: Free Will and Atonement. The trial at Jerusalem. The claim of Christ Jesus. The choice of the multitude. Moses and Christ. The Jews could see God in nature but not in themselves. The Will of God shown in the elements. The Ten Commandments. The heathen perceived Christ in the Mysteries: but He was not recognized by Jews or heathen, though He came to both. Immortality without consciousness means nothing. Will to the Jews; Wisdom to the heathen. Love takes individuality through death.

LECTURE 2. No certainty in ideals. Christian Morgenstern. Individual immortality the proof of Cosmic reality in the Anthroposophical Society. The Christ impulse when taken up by one person affects not him alone, but the whole of humanity. Responsibility to the Spiritual World. Dr. Steiner's Plays. Our ideals are often Luciferic. Christ-enfilled ideals are the reality, ‘Not I, but Christ in me.’ ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself.’

LECTURE 3. Immortality without consciousness means nothing. Sin and guilt. The Crucifixion and the two malefactors. The mission of Lucifer and Ahriman is in Cosmos, outside the Physical. Christ also is a Cosmic being whose judgment is different from ours. Karma and compensation. The descent of Christ into Limbo. Michelangelo's Last Judgment. The Atonement. The power to forgive sins depends on the consciousness of the sinner that Christ can blot out the Cosmic fact, but not the Karmic fact. The woman taken in adultery. The Theosophical idea of Karmic adjustment is an egoistic misconception when Christianity is omitted. We should say ‘Not I and my own redemption but the Christ in me and the earth redemption.’ Convenience sometimes is miscalled Christianity. Our Cosmic responsibility to Christ. There is so much cheap knowledge, and the desire to rush into print. Objective truth is more important than man's opinion. The crisis in the Theosophical Society.

LECTURE 4. The New Testament must be absorbed before it can be understood. Christ had to become akin to death. We kill this light and air. We cannot kill ‘Chemical Ether’ or ‘Life Ether.’ ‘Of the Tree of Life man shall not eat, and the Spirit of Matter he shall not hear.’ The Music of the Spheres, from which came Christ. ‘In the beginning was the Word.’ Christ had to enter what is slain by human nature, and akin to death; hence ‘Christ in us.’ Plants transform light into air-spirits: animals transform ‘Chemical Ether’ into water-spirits: man transforms ‘Life Ether’ into earth-spirits. The Phantom. Man's moral and intellectual aura. The Christ Impulse. The Bridegroom and Bride. Bernard of Clairvaux. Pythagoras. The Sphere music and the Cosmic life. In the body we shall rise again as a body condensed from the incarnations. The two races upon Jupiter. ‘Forgiveness in My Name.’ The sinner must be conscious of his guilt to feel union with Christ. An Anthroposophist should be his own Father Confessor.

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