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FOUNDATIONS AT THE PERIPHERY:

RUDOLF STEINER'S OBSERVATIONS ON STAR KNOWLEDGE


1910

{1910 saw the publication of a fundamental work of Steiner's; the English translation of which, that I am using, is called An Outline of Occult Science, published in 1972 by the Anthroposophic Press. Much of the evolutionary and methodological details that I presented in Vol. I of this work, was brought together by him in this work, and also in a subsequent book called, in English, Theosophy. Anyone working seriously with Steiner's point of view should consider these to be `required reading', and therefore I am only bringing forward from these books certain specific observations that I consider complementary to the information from the broader survey that forms the bulk of what I am presenting.]

from: An Outline of Occult Science

“ - We must also consider that anyone who finds his way purely through thinking into what supersensible cognition has to impart is not at all in the same position as someone who listens to the description of a physical process that he himself is unable to observe, since pure thinking is itself a supersensible activity. Thinking, as a sensory activity, cannot of itself lead to supersensible occurrences. If, however, this thinking is applied to the supersensible occurrences described by supersensible perception, it then grows through itself into the spiritual world. In fact, one of the best ways of acquiring one's own perception in the supersensible realm is to grow into the higher world by thinking about the communications of supersensible cognition, for, entrance into the higher realms in this way is accompanied by the greatest clarity of perception. For this reason a certain school of spiritual-scientific investigation considers this thinking the most excellent first stage of all spiritual-scientific training.” (2, pg. 107)

“(We speak here of the celestial bodies, planets, and their names, in exactly the same way as was the custom of a more ancient science. What is meant becomes clear from the context. Just as the physical earth is only the physical expression of a soul-spiritual organism, so is that the case with every other celestial body. The supersensible observer does not intend to designate merely the physical planet by the name earth, not merely the physical fixed star by sun, but he has in mind a much wider spiritual connection; this is also true when he speaks of Jupiter, Mars, and the other planets. The celestial bodies have changed essentially in regard to their configuration and task since the time spoken of here; in a certain respect even their location in heavenly space has changed. Only someone who has traced back, with the penetration of supersensible knowledge, the evolution of these heavenly bodies right into the distant primeval past is capable of recognizing the connection between the present-day planets and their ancestors.)” (2, pp. 198-199)

“After the Earth had developed the air element within itself, there were astral beings, as described above, left over from the ancient Moon, who were greater laggards in evolution than the lowest human souls. These became the souls of the forms that had to be forsaken by human beings even before the separation of the sun from the Earth. These beings are the ancestors of the present animal kingdom. In the course of time, they developed the organs especially that were present in the human being only as appendages. Their astral body had to affect the physical and ether bodies in the same way that was the case for human beings on the ancient Moon. The animals thus created had souls that could not reside in the individual animal. The soul extended its nature upon the inheritors of the forebear's form. The animals originating from a single configuration have a common soul. Only when the descendant under especial influences departs from the form of its forebear does a new animal soul commence its embodiment. We may speak in this sense in spiritual science in regard to animal souls of a species or group soul.

“Something similar occurred at the time of the separation of the sun from the Earth. Forms emerged from the watery element that were no further evolved than the human being prior to evolution on the ancient Moon. They were able to receive the effect of the activity of an astral element only when this influenced them from the outside. That could only occur after the separation of the sun from the Earth. With every repetition of the sun period of the Earth, the sun's astral element animated these forms in such a way that they constructed their life bodies from the Earth's etheric element. When the sun again turned away from the Earth, this life body dissolved into the common body of the Earth. As a result of the co-operation of the astral element of the sun with the ether element of the Earth there emerged from the watery element the physical structures that formed the ancestors of the present-day plant kingdom.” (2, pp. 200-201)

“The physical expression of all the changes that occurred in the spirit world while human evolution went through the described conditions was the gradual regulation of the reciprocal relationships of sun, moon and earth, and in a broader sense also of the other heavenly bodies. The alternation of day and night can be emphasized as being one consequence of these relationships. (The movements of the heavenly bodies are regulated by the beings inhabiting them. The movement of the earth through which day and night occur was caused by the reciprocal relationships of the various spirits standing above man. In like manner also the movement of the moon was caused, in order that after its separation from and revolving around the earth the Spirit of Form could act in the right way, with the right rhythm, upon the physical body.)” (2, pp. 209-210)

“The physical form of man was, in the primeval past that is under discussion here, still widely different from the present human shape. It was to a high degree still the expression of soul faculties. The human being consisted of a finer, softer substance than the one he acquired later. What today is solidified was in the limbs soft, supple, and easily molded. A human being who expressed more intensely his soul and spiritual nature had a delicate, active and expressive body structure. Another with less spiritual development had crude, immobile, less easily molded bodily forms. Advancement in soul qualities contracted the limbs; the figure remained small. Retardation in soul development and entanglement in the world of the senses expressed itself in gigantic size. While man was in the period of growth, the body, in accordance with what occurred in the soul, assumed forms of a certain kind that to the present-day human mind must appear fabulous, indeed, fantastic. Moral corruption through passions, impulses, and instincts resulted in an enormous increase in the material substance in man. The present-day human physical form has come into existence through contraction, condensation, and solidification of the Atlantean; whereas before the Atlantean age the human being was a faithful copy of his soul nature, the processes of the Atlantean evolution bore the causes in themselves that led to the post-Atlantean human being who in his physical shape is solid and little dependent on soul qualities. (The animal kingdom became denser in its forms at much earlier periods of the earth than the human being.) The laws that lie at present at the foundation of form-fashioning in the kingdoms of nature are not valid under any circumstances for the more distant past.” (2, pp. 222-223)

“The transformations in the things of the earth existing outside the human being occur with a certain relationship to humanity's own evolution. After the seventh cultural period has run its course, the earth will be visited by a catastrophe that may be likened to what occurred between the Atlantean and post-Atlantean ages, and the transformed earth conditions after this catastrophe will again evolve in seven time periods. Human souls who will then be incarnated will experience, at a higher stage, the union with the higher world experienced by the Atlanteans at a lower stage. Only those human beings, however, in whom are incarnated human souls that have developed in a manner possible through the influences of the Graeco-Latin epoch and the subsequent fifth, sixth, and seventh cultural epochs of the post-Atlantean evolution will be able to cope with the newly formed earth conditions. The inner being of such souls will correspond to what the earth has then become. Other souls will then have to remain behind, whereas previously they would have had the choice of creating the conditions for advancement. Souls who will have created the possibility for themselves, in the transition from the fifth to the sixth post-Atlantean period, of penetrating supersensible knowledge with the forces of intellect and feeling, will have the maturity for the corresponding conditions following the next great catastrophe. The fifth and sixth periods are, so to speak, decisive. In the seventh, the souls who have reached the goal of the sixth will develop correspondingly further; the other souls, however, will, under the changed conditions of the environment, find but little opportunity of retrieving what they have neglected. Only at some future time will conditions appear again that will permit this. - Evolution thus advances from age to age. Supersensible cognition not only observes such future changes in which the earth alone takes part, but it is also aware of changes that occur in co-operation with the heavenly bodies in its environment. A time will come when the evolution of the earth and mankind will have advanced so far that the spiritual beings and powers that had to sever themselves from the earth during the Lemurian age, in order to make possible the continued progress of the earth's beings, will be able to unite themselves again with the earth. The moon will then reunite with the earth. This will occur because at that time a sufficiently large number of human souls will possess so much inner strength that they will use these moon forces for the benefit of further evolution. This will occur at a time when, alongside the high level of development that will have been reached by a certain number of human souls, another development will occur that has taken the direction toward evil. The laggard souls will have accumulated in their karma so much error, ugliness, and evil that they will form, for the time being, a special union of evil and aberrant human beings who violently oppose the community of good men.

“The good humanity will through its development acquire the use of the moon forces and thereby so transform the evil part also that, as a special realm of the earth, it may participate in further evolution. Through this work of the good humanity, the earth, united with the moon, will be able, after a certain period of evolution, to reunite also with the sun and the other planets. Then, after an intermediate stage, which presents itself as a sojourn in a higher world, the Earth will transform itself into Jupiter. Within this state, what is now called the mineral kingdom will no longer exist; the forces of this mineral kingdom will be transformed into plant forces. The plant kingdom, which in contrast to the present plant kingdom will have an entirely new form, appears during the Jupiter state as the lowest kingdom. To this a higher kingdom is added, the transformed animal kingdom; above it there is a human kingdom, which proves to be the progeny of the evil community that arose on the earth; above all these are to be found the descendants of the good community of earth men, a human kingdom of a higher order. A great part of the activity of this latter human kingdom consists in the work of ennobling the fallen souls of the evil community, so that they may still be able to find their way back into the actual human kingdom.” (2, pp. 360-361)

“In certain chapters of this book it has been indicated how the world of man and the human being himself pass through the states that have been designated by the names Saturn, Sun, Moon, Earth, Jupiter, Venus, Vulcan. Indications have also been given concerning the relationship between human evolution and celestial bodies co-existing with the earth, such as Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, and so forth. These latter celestial bodies naturally go through their evolution also. In the present age they have reached a stage in which their physical parts are shown to perception as what is called in physical astronomy Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, and so forth. If now, in the sense of spiritual science, the present Saturn is studied, it shows itself, so to speak, as a reincarnation of ancient Saturn. It has come into existence because, before the separation of the sun from the earth, certain beings were present who were unable to participate in this separation, since they had absorbed into themselves so many of the characteristics belonging to the Saturn state that they could not abide in an environment were especially the sun characteristics were unfolded. The present Jupiter has arisen, however, through the presence of beings who possessed characteristics that can only unfold on the future Jupiter of general cosmic evolution. An abode came into existence for them in which they are able to anticipate this future evolution. Similarly, Mars is a celestial body on which beings dwell who have passed through the Moon evolution in such a way that the earth could offer them no further advancement. Mars is the reincarnation of the ancient Moon at a higher stage. The present Mercury is the dwelling place of beings who, by having developed certain earth characteristics in a form higher than it can occur on this earth planet, are in advance of the evolution of the Earth. In a similar way the present Venus is a prophetic anticipation of the future Venus state. From all this we are justified in choosing the designations for the states that have preceded the Earth and that will follow it from their representatives in the cosmos.” (2, pp. 386-387)

5 Mar. 1910

“Is there perhaps something in our solar system that brings about, as a kind of mirror-image on earth, the contrast between man and woman? Yes, this higher polarity can be designated as the contrast between the cometary and lunar natures, between the comets and the moon. Just as the contrast of sun - earth is reflected in our head and limbs, so in feminine and masculine is reflected the contrast of comet - moon.” (17, pg. 57)

“If it will not be misunderstood, we can say that the female body, as it is today, has remained behind at a more spiritual stage; in its form it has not descended so deeply into matter as to be in accord with the average stage of evolution. The male body, however, has advanced beyond the average stage - apart from head and limbs. He has overshot this average stage, arriving at (a further point). A male body, therefor, has deteriorated, because it has descended more deeply into the material than is called for today by the average stage of evolution. In the female body we thus have something that has remained behind normal evolution and in the male body something that has descended more deeply into the material than have head and limbs.

“This same contrast is also to be found in our solar cosmos. If we take our earth and sun as representing normal evolutionary stages, the comet has not advanced to this normal stage. It corresponds in our cosmos to the feminine in the human being. Hence, we must see cometary existence as the cosmic archetype of the feminine organism. Lunar existence is the counterpart of masculine existence. The contrast between comet and moon out in the cosmos is therefor the archetype of feminine and masculine in the human being.

“This matter is extremely interesting, because it shows us that whether we are considering an earthly being, such as man, or the whole universe, we must not simply think of one member side by side with others as they appear to us in space; if we do this we give ourselves up to dreadful illusions. The various members of the human organism are, of course, beside one another, and the ordinary materialistic anatomist will regard them as being at equal stages of development. For one who studies the truth of such things, however, there are differences, inasmuch as one thing has reached a certain point of evolution, another has not - although it has made some progress - and another has passed beyond this point. A time will come when the whole human organism will be studied along these lines; only then will an occult anatomy exist in the real sense. .As I have told you, things that lie side by side can be at different stages of evolution, and the organs of the human body are only to be understood when one knows that each of them has reached a quite different stage of evolution.” (17, pp. 58-59)

[Comment on Steiner's prediction of cyanides on comets due to their relating to old Moon evolution,] (17, pp. 60-61, précis by RSWB)

“Above all, we must become conscious of how the contrast expressed in comet and moon works upon the human being. We must not think that this contrast expresses itself only in what constitutes man and woman in humanity, because we must be clear that masculine characteristics exist in every woman and feminine characteristics in every man. We also know that the etheric body of man is female and that of woman, male, and this at once makes the matter extremely complicated.” (17, pp. 61-62)

“We can also express it this way: as what is done by a woman out of passion, out of feeling, is related to the dry, reasonable, masculine judgement, so is the regular, reasonable course of the moon related to the cometary phenomenon that projects apparently irregularly into our existence. Mark well - I do not mean the spiritual life of a woman, but the feminine spiritual life. There is a difference. The spiritual life of a woman naturally includes masculine characteristics.” (17, pp. 62-63)

“The comets appear at great intervals of time. Let us ask: when they appear, is their relation to human evolution as a whole such that they stimulate, as it were, the feminine principle in human nature? There is, for example, Halley's Comet, which now again has a certain actuality. The same could be said of many other comets. Halley's Comet has a quite definite task, and everything else that it brings with it stands in a particular connection to this task. Halley's Comet - we are speaking here of its spiritual aspect - has the task of impressing on human nature its own special being in such a way that this human nature and essence take a further step in the development of the I when the comet comes near the earth. It is the step which leads the I out to concepts on the physical plane. To begin with, the comet has its special influence on the two lower members of human nature, on what is masculine and feminine; there it joins company with the workings of the moon. When the comet is not there, the workings of the moon are one-sided; the workings change when the comet is present.

“The comet works upon the physical and etheric or life bodies of man in such a way that they actually create organs, delicate organs that are suitable for the further development of the I - the I-consciousness as it has developed especially since the imbedding of the Christ impulse in the earth. Since that time the significance of the comet's appearance is that the I, as it develops from stage to stage, receives physical and etheric organs it can use.” (17, pp. 64-65)

“Every cometary body thus has a definite task. Human spiritual life takes its course with a certain cosmic regularity, as it were - a bourgeois regularity one could say. Into this regularity there come other events, events that in ordinary, bourgeois life are also unlike those of everyday and through which a certain noticeable advance occurs. So it is, for example, when a child is born into a family. The cosmic regularity manifesting in the whole of human evolution takes its course under the influence of the moon, of the lunar body. In contrast to these events, there are things that always bring about a step forward, that are naturally distributed over wider spans of time; these events occur under the influence of the comets. The various comets have here their different tasks, and when a comet has served its purpose it splinters. Thus we find that from a certain time onward, some comets appear as two and then splinter. They dissolve when they have completed their tasks. Regularity, all that belongs to the common round, is connected with the lunar influence; the entry of an elemental impulse, always incorporating something new, is connected with the influence of the comets.

“As when a new little child is born, so it is when, through the return of a comet, something quite new is produced. We must remember, however, that with certain comets the I is always driven out more and more into the physical world, and this is something we must resist. If the influence of Halley's Comet were to continue, a new appearance of it might bring about a great enhancement of Buchnerian thought, and that would be a terrible misfortune. A reappearance of Halley's Comet should therefor give us warning that it might prove to be an evil guest if we were simply to give ourselves up to it, if we were not to resist its influence.” (17, pp. 66-67)

“On the other hand, is it not wonderful that cometary existence takes hold of the depths of life, including the animal and plant life that is bound up with human life? Those who pay close enough attention to such things would observe how there is actually something altogether different in the blossoming of flowers from what is usually the case.” (17, pg. 68)

13 Mar. 1910

“We feel man's relationship to the universe when we know that it is the sun that sends out certain forces to the earth, thus enabling man to develop his present organisation. His head is drawn upwards by the forces of the sun, and his limbs downwards by the forces of the earth. The limbs receive their commands from the head, just as the earth is directed by the sun.

“Let us now draw attention to another antithesis. What I have said so far, applies indiscriminately to all men; no distinction is made between man and woman. In the human organism there is, however, the contrast between male and female. In accordance with the analogies indicated above, we ask: Can we find in the macrocosm this contrast between man and woman, just as we found it between the head and the limbs?”

“There is also in the macrocosm an antithesis which corresponds to that of male and female, namely what we discern in the cometary and lunar phenomena, what appears to us as the contrast between the comets and the moon. The moon is a piece of the earth which became separated from it even later than the sun. What the earth could not use, was thus eliminated, because the human form would otherwise have grown osseous and wooden in the course of its development. The moon would have brought man's development to an end too quickly. The moon, so dried up and icy, represents that which will only be able to live again later on, as Jupiter existence, and which now appears as if it were condemned to death.

“The comet represents something that penetrates into our earthly life from the ancient Moon-existence; its development has been held back, so that it has not developed as far as the earth, but remained behind on a higher and more spiritual stage. The moon, on the other hand, has gone out of the earth and beyond it. And the earth itself stands between these two.

“Hence, the comet and the moon should, like the male and female form, be looked upon as having remained behind and as having surpassed the normal course of development. The comet behaves, as it were, in the same way in which the female nature behaves in human life.”

[Comment on the 1906 prediction of cyanuric acid in comets and subsequent demonstration through spectral analysis.]

“When a comet appears, it gives human evolution a jolt, not so much in the direction of progress, but in everything else which is implanted into humanity.

“We can observe this in Halley's comet, in the spiritual forces behind it. Its appearance has always been connected with something new in the evolution of the earth. At present (1910), it is about to appear again. In a materialistic sense, this will introduce and give birth to a new stage. Its last three appearances, in 1683, 1759 and 1835, show this. In 1759, forces and spiritual powers went out from it which brought about materialistic enlightenment. What developed in this sense, under the influence of spirits and powers behind Halley's comet, was, for instance, that which so annoyed Goethe in von Holbach's “Systeme de la Nature” and in the French encyclopaedists. When Halley's comet again appeared in 1835, materialism appeared very conspicuously in the views of Buchner and Moleshott, views which were widely accepted during the second half of the 19th century.

“In the present year, 1910, we shall see Halley's comet again, and this will mean a year of crisis in regard to the above mentioned conceptions. All forces are at work in order to press out of the human soul a still more superficial and evil mentality and to produce a materialistic swamp in the conception of the world. A tremendous trial faces humanity, a test in which mankind will have to prove that the deepest fall which threatens it also contains in the strongest measure the impulse to rise from all sides. For otherwise it would not be possible for man to overcome the obstacles of materialistic conceptions. If man were not exposed to materialism, he would not be able to overcome it through his own forces. And now he has the opportunity of choosing between the spiritual and the materialistic direction. Out of the cosmos we obtain the conditions that lie at the foundation of this year of crisis.”

“At the time of the event of Golgotha, the sun's vernal point had for some time been in the sign of Aries. The vernal point passes through all the twelve signs of the Zodiac in the course of 25,920 years. The vernal point has in the meantime advanced so far that it now lies in the sign of Pisces. In the middle of the 20th century, a certain point within this constellation will be reached. Aries marks the close of Kali Yuga, the Dark Age, which according to Oriental philosophy , began in the year 3103 before Christ. At that time, the sun's vernal point passed through the sign of Taurus. This was represented by the Mithras Bull and the Apis Bull of Egypt. Reproductions of the sun's passage through Aries may be found in the legend of the Argonauts with the Golden Fleece, and also in Christ's description of Himself as the Lamb. The early Christians generally represented Christ as a Lamb at the foot of the Cross.

“The age of Kali Yuga ended in the year 1899. It therefor lasted 5000 years, from 3100 B.C. until 1899 A.D. It was an age in which man had to rely exclusively upon their physical senses for the observation of what took place on the physical plane, without having any faculty of seeing clairvoyantly.”

“But the clairvoyant faculties, which will be able to lead human nature up once more towards a spiritual development, are now beginning to unfold. Only during the age of Kali Yuga could the ego - this had to be - develop that form of consciousness which now pertains to it, and it developed in a way which was only possible during that time. But from now onwards, a clairvoyant consciousness can be added to this Ego-consciousness, a clairvoyant consciousness which will unfold during the next 2500 years, and through which a spiritual comprehension of the world will be added to the physical-sensory one.”

“When the tender forces of clairvoyance appear, when they grow stronger and stronger and spread over the earth, when men take up these good forces which originate from the life of the Sun, so that the influences of these forces will be felt, instead of those of Halley's comet, then Shamballah will return.

“We now live in an age in which mankind is being prepared for the unfolding of a new clairvoyance, and this evolution will take its course during the next 2500 years. The preparation will never cease; it will steadily increase during the time between birth and death, as also during the time between death and a new birth.” (129, pp. 3-8)

22 Mar. 1910

“The force which works upon the Sentient Soul and at the times of going to sleep and waking drives man out of his bodily sheaths and eventually into them again, was designated in one of the ancient languages by a name that would correspond with the word `Mars'. The force which works upon the Mind-Soul after the man has gone to sleep and again before waking, that is to say, in two different periods, was designated by the word `Jupiter'. It is the force which drives the world of dreams into the Mind-Soul. The force which works upon the Consciousness-Soul during sleep and under special circumstances would make a man into a sleep-walker, was designated by the name `Saturn'.

“We may therefore say, using the terminology of ancient spiritual science: `Mars' sends man to sleep and wakes him; `Jupiter' sends dreams into his sleep; and dark `Saturn' stirs into unconscious action during sleep a man who cannot withstand its influence. For the time being we will think of the original, spiritual significance of these names as denoting forces that work upon the human being during sleep, when he is outside the physical and etheric bodies in the spiritual world, not of their significance in astronomy.

“In the morning the Sentient Soul begins to be given up to the impressions of the outer world brought to it by the Sentient Body. The part of us (Sentient Soul) which during sleep was exposed to the Mars influence is given over on waking to the external world of the senses. Spiritual science again gives a special name to the whole of the external sense-world in so far as it arouses certain feelings of pleasure or pain, joy or sadness in our souls. But under that name we must think only of the influence working upon our Sentient Soul from the tapestry of the outer world of the senses; this force does not let us remain cold and impassive but fills us with certain feelings. So that just as the first influence exerted on the Sentient Soul after we go to sleep is given the name of Mars, the influence which takes effect on waking is called the force of `Venus'.

“Similarly, an influence from the physical world is exerted during waking life upon the Intellectual or Mind-Soul when it is within the bodily sheaths. This is a different influence; it is the influence which enables us to withdraw from external impressions and to work upon them inwardly, to reflect upon them. Notice the difference there is between the experiences of the Sentient Soul and those of the Intellectual or Mind-Soul. The Sentient Soul has experiences only as long as a man is given up to the outer world; it receives the impressions of the outer world. But if for a time in waking life he pays no attention to the actual impressions of the outer world, if he ponders over them and lets the feelings of pleasure, pain, and so forth, merely echo on within him, then he is given over to his Mind-Soul. Compared with the Sentient Soul it has rather more independence. There are influences which enable a man during waking life not merely to stand gazing at the tapestry of the sense-world but to turn his attention away from all that, to form thoughts whereby he combines external impressions in his mind and enable him to make himself independent of the outer world. These are the influences of `Mercury'.

“The influence of Mercury works during the day upon man's Intellectual or Mind-Soul just as the influence of Jupiter works upon it during sleep at night. You will notice how there is a certain correspondence between the influences of `Mercury' and `Jupiter'. When the Jupiter forces are working in a man's dreams, he does not know whence his experiences come; during waking consciousness, however, when the Mercury influences are working, he knows the source of them.

“The Sentient Soul operates when we are merely gazing at the things of the external world. If we withdraw our attention for a time from the impressions of the outer world and work over them inwardly, then we are given over to the Mind-Soul. But if we now take what has been worked over in thought, turn again to the outer world and relate ourselves to it by passing over to deeds, then we are given over to the Consciousness-Soul.

“You will notice that there is again a correspondence between the activity of the Consciousness Soul in the waking state and in sleep. You have heard that when this influence is being exerted in sleep a man becomes a sleep-walker; he speaks and acts in his sleep. In the waking state, however, he acts consciously. At night, in sleep-walking he is impelled by the force of dark `Saturn'. The influence which during waking life works upon man's Consciousness-Soul in such a way that independence can be achieved in conditions of ordinary life, is called in Spiritual Science the force of `Moon'. Here again, please forget whatever mental pictures you have connected with this word. You will presently understand the reason for these designations.

“Thus we have found that man's soul in waking life and in sleep has three different members, that it is subject to three different influences. During the night when man is in the spiritual world he is subject to the forces designated in Spiritual Science as those of `Mars', `Jupiter' and `Saturn'; his threefold life of soul by day is given over to the forces designated as those of `Venus', `Mercury' and `Moon'.”

“We are taught as children that the Sun is at the centre of the solar system and that the planets revolve around it - first the planet now called Mercury, then the planet now called Venus, then the Earth plus Moon, then Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Astronomical maps of the heavens show us where Saturn or Jupiter or Mars are to be found in certain months of the year. When we have learnt to know the relative positions of the planets at definite times of the year, we have learnt as much about the heavens as a child has learnt about the clock when from the position of the hands he is able to say that the time is half-past nine.

“But then we can go on to learn something else. Just as a child learns to recognize what conditions are indicated by the position of the hands of a clock, we can learn to recognize macrocosmic forces penetrating invisibly into space behind a great cosmic timepiece. We realise then that our solar system, with the planets in their different positions and mutual relationships, gives expression to certain macrocosmic powers. From this timepiece of our planetary system we can pass on to contemplate the great spiritual relationships. The position of every planet will become the expression of something lying behind and we shall be able to say that there are reasons for the various relationships in which, for example, Venus stands to Jupiter, and so on. There are actual reasons for saying that these conditions are brought about by divine-spiritual Powers, just as there are reasons for saying that the cosmic timepiece is constructed according to a definite plan. The idea of planetary movements in the solar system then becomes full of significance.

“And now we will think of the outer aspect of this solar system. The Earth revolves around the Sun at the centre. I will leave out details. At a certain time of the year the Earth stands at one point and at another time somewhere else. The Moon revolves around the Earth and the planets usually called Mercury and Venus are nearer to the Sun and revolve around it. I emphasize here that in the course of time a change has taken place in the names of these two planets. The planet that is called Mercury to-day was formerly called Venus, and the planet called Venus to-day was formerly called Mercury. Therefor you should think of these designations reversed, so that they do not correspond with current astronomical designations. The planet lying nearer the Sun must be known as Venus and the planet lying farther away from the Sun must be known as Mercury. Then, farther away than the Earth, the diagram indicates Mars, Jupiter and Saturn revolving around the Sun. The relative positions are not strictly correct but that does not matter here. We will leave the other planets out of consideration to-day.

“Now let us assume that as it revolves the Earth comes to a position with the Sun between it and Mars. This will very seldom be the case but we will assume for the moment that it is so. Then, in the space between the Earth and Sun there will be the planets Mercury and Venus, and on the other side of the Sun, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Leaving aside the Earth, the sequence will be: Sun, Venus, Mercury, Moon, on one side; Sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, on the other. A looped line drawn around the heavenly bodies is a lemniscate, with the Sun at the centre of the loops - it is the same line as the one indicating the cycle of man's waking and sleeping life.

“Thus it is possible - though not generally the case - for the planets to be arranged in the solar system in an order similar to that followed by man in completing the cycle of waking and sleeping. Taking the moment of going to sleep and waking as the centre, the same spatial order can be indicated for the planetary system as for the daily life of man.

“The perspective here revealed is one of mighty forces underlying the order of our planetary system, regulating the great cosmic timepiece as our own lives are regulated through the course of 24 hours. The thought will not then seem absurd that mighty forces are operating in the Macrocosm - forces analogous to those which guide our lives during the day and night. As the outcome of such thoughts the same names came into use in ancient science for the forces of the universe as for the forces which work upon our own lives. The force which in the Macrocosm drives Mars around the Sun is similar to the one that sends us to sleep. The force in the Macrocosm which drives Venus around the Sun is similar to the one that regulates the Sentient Soul by day. Far-off Saturn, with its slight influence, seems to resemble those weak forces that work, in special cases only, upon the Consciousness-Soul in people who are sleep-walkers. And the rotation of the Moon around the Earth is due to force similar to that which regulates our conscious deeds in waking life. The spatial distances signify something that comes to expression in a certain respect in our time-regulated life. - We shall go into these things more deeply and it is only a matter to-day of calling attention to them. - If we consider, quite superficially, that Saturn is the most remote planet and has accordingly the weakest effect upon our Earth, this can be compared with the fact that the forces of dark Saturn have only a slight effect upon the sleeping human being. And similarly, the force which drives Jupiter around the Sun can be likened to that which penetrates comparatively seldom into our lives, namely, the dream-world.” (61, pp. 35-44)

26 Mar. 1910

“It has already been said that our solar system may be conceived as a great cosmic clock or timepiece. Just as we infer from the position of the hands of the clock that something is happening, we can do the same from the relative positions of the heavenly bodies. Anyone looking at a clock is naturally not interested in the hands or their position per se, but what this indicates in the outer world. A man who has to go to his daily work looks at a clock to see if it is time to start. The position of the hands is therefor the expression of something lying behind. And so it is in the case of the solar system. This great cosmic clock can be regarded as the expression of spiritual happenings and of the activity of spiritual beings behind it.

“And now we realize that the comparison with a clock is by no means so far fetched. We relate the heavenly bodies to the twelve constellations of the Zodiac, and we can find our bearings in the World of Spirit only by viewing it in such a way as to be able to assert that spiritual Beings and events are realities; we compare the facts with the courses of the planets but the spiritual Beings with the twelve constellations of the Zodiac. If we contemplate the planets in space and the Zodiacal constellations, if we conceive the movements and relative positions of the planets in front of the various constellations to be manifestations of the activities of the spiritual Beings and the twelve constellations of the Zodiac as the spiritual Beings themselves, then it is possible to express by such an analogy what is happening in the World of Spirit.

“We distinguish seven planets moving and performing deeds, and the twelve Zodiacal constellations at rest behind them. We conceive that the spiritual facts - the courses of the planets - are brought about by twelve Beings. Only in this way is it possible to speak truly of the World of Spirit lying behind the Elementary World. We must picture not merely twelve Zodiacal constellations, but Beings, actually categories of Beings, and not merely seven planets, but spiritual facts.

“Twelve Beings are acting, are entering into relationship with one another and if we describe their actions this will show what is coming to pass in the World of Spirit. Accordingly, whatever has reference to the Beings must be related to the number twelve; whatever has reference to the facts must be related to the number seven. Only instead of the names of the Zodiacal constellations we need to have the names of the corresponding beings. In Spiritual Science these names have always been known. At the beginning of the Christian era there was an esoteric School which adopted the following names for the Spiritual Beings corresponding to the Zodiacal constellations: Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones, Kyriotetes, Dynameis, Exusiai, then Archai (Primal Beginnings or Spirits of Personality), then Archangels and Angels. The tenth category is Man himself at his present stage of evolution. These names denote ten ranks. Man, however, develops onwards and subsequently reaches stages already attained by other Beings Therefor one day he will be instrumental in forming an eleventh and a twelfth category. In this sense we must think of twelve spiritual Beings.” (61, pp. 107-109)

18 Apr. 1910

“Just as the movements in the planets circling the sun correspond to the regular events in the evolution of humanity, so the appearance of a comet corresponds to an influence that runs counter to the regular events. Rosicrucian research has demonstrated that every comet exerts a particular influence on human evolution. The present comet has as its particular influence an intense impulse towards materialism. Every time Halley's Comet has appeared, a new impulse toward materialism has taken place. Its appearance in 1759 corresponded with the epoch in which Voltaireanism was at its high point. The appearance in 1835 corresponded with the materialism of Moleschott, Buchner, and others. In the same way, in our time there will be a new impulse toward materialism, and the outer sign of this will be the appearance of the comet. Those who let themselves be swayed by its influence will fall into the deepest materialism.

“Today, not only this impulse exists, but there is also another influence., which is to raise humanity to spiritual heights. This will be observed by those who understand the signs of the times. In the macrocosm, the sign for this influence is the fact that the sun at the vernal equinox has entered the sign of Pisces, the Fish. At the time when Christ appeared, the sun was in the sign of Aries, the Ram. The sun began to enter this sign about 800 B.C. and was well into Aries at the time of the event of Golgotha. Now the sun has been in the sign of Pisces for several centuries. In the near future it will have advanced so far in this sign that it will become the outer symbol for the reappearance of Christ in the etheric Body.” (17, pg. 107)

10 May 1910

“There is thus a lunar body, the moon, which has gone too far in its evolution, and such bodies as have remained at an earlier stage of evolution, namely, the comets . . . A comet brings with it the laws of the earlier Moon and therefor renews these ancient laws. It also brings with it the cyanide compounds, as has recently been established by outer science and has been known for a long time to occult science. Just as oxygen and carbon compounds are necessary to us on earth, so the cyanides were essential on the ancient Moon. In 1906 I enlarged on this in Paris, at the annual meeting of the Theosophical Society, in the presence of Colonel Olcott, our president at that time, and various others.” (17, pg. 113)

“There is another significant sign, however, one that makes it possible for humanity to escape the destructive influence of the comet; its forces are even stronger than the comet's. This is the spring sign of Pisces, the Fish, in which we've stood for several centuries; at the time of Christ the vernal equinox was in the constellation of Aries, the Ram. (17, pp. 114-115)

Whitsunday, 1910

“Easter is a moveable feast, which is determined by the constellations in the heavens; it falls on the first Sunday after the full moon which follows the Spring equinox. For this festival we must direct our gaze into the heights of heaven, where the stars go their way and proclaim to us the laws of the cosmos. Easter is a moveable feast, just as in each human individuality that moment is moveable in which, in order to become free from the ordinary human lower nature, there awakens the power of the higher man, with a higher consciousness. Just as in one year Easter falls on this day, in another year on that, so with each man, according to his past and the strength of his endeavor, the moment comes sooner or later in which he becomes aware: `I can find the power in myself to let a higher man arise out of me'.” (18, pg. 265)

12 June 1910

“Now it may be asked: Why was the Sun split off at all? That was necessary for the following reasons: As soon as certain older Spirits of Motion - who possess greater power than the Spirits of Form, for they stand higher in the rank of the hierarchies - had decided to remain behind, the normal Spirits of Form had to weaken their activity by splitting off one of themselves. They would not otherwise have been able to bring about equilibrium requisite for further evolution.

“If we want to obtain a satisfactory conception of the activities of these normal Spirits of Form, it is best to think of them as streaming down to us in the sunlight. But if we want to obtain an idea of the abnormal Spirits of Form, and of how they act in combination with the normal Spirits of Form, who are centred in the Sun as it were (for it was only in order that the equilibrium could be brought about that Jehovah split off towards the Moon); then we must imagine that a certain sun-force, which streams towards us in the normal Spirits of Form, is altered by the force that streams to us from the abnormal Spirits of Form, who are really Spirits of Motion. These have their centre in the other five planets, speaking of the planets in the old way. You must therefor seek for the centre of these others, the abnormal Spirits of Form, in Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Venus, Mercury.

“You have now, when you look into the cosmos, a sort of distribution of the normal and the abnormal Spirits of Form. Six of the normal Spirits Six of the normal Spirits of Form are centred in the Sun, one of them - Jahve or Jehovah - forms the equilibrium for them from Moon, by ruling and guiding the latter. The activities of this Spirit of Form are influenced by the activities proceeding from Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Venus and Mercury. These forces stream down upon Earth, are stemmed there and ray up again from Earth, as was described at the close of our last lecture.

“Thus if you have a part of the Earth's surface upon which a certain activity is exercised from the Sun by the Elohim or normal Spirits of Form, then nothing would come into existence on that particular part of the Earth's surface but the entirely normal `I', that which gives man his normal being, which produces the average general human nature. Now into these forces of the Spirits of Form, which through the state of equilibrium would otherwise dance here upon the surface, are intermingled the forces of Mercury. Hence in that which here unfolds as the force of the Spirits of Form, there dances and vibrates not only the forces of the Elohim, in the normal forces of the Spirits of Form, there are five possible centres of influence, and these, in their reflection upon humanity from the centre of the Earth, really produce what we know as the five root-races who inhabit the Earth.

“If we now more closely characterise the spot which in our recent statements we placed in Africa, by saying, that through the co-operation of the normal Spirits of Form with the abnormal ones centred in Mercury, the negro race came into existence, we are then, from an occult standpoint, quite correct in describing what appears in the black race, as the `Mercury race'.

“Let us now follow on further along the line which we then drew through the central points from which the several races sprang. We may then go to Asia and find there the Venus-race or the Malay race. We then pass on across the wide domain of Asia and in the Mongolian race we find the Mars-race. We then pass over into the domain of Europe and we find in the Europeans, in their basic character, in their racial character, the Jupiter men. If we cross over the ocean to America, where the place is at which the races or civilisations die, we then find the race of the dark Saturn, the original American-Indian race, the American race. The American-Indian race is the Saturn race.

“In this way, if occultly you picture this matter more and more clearly, you find in these five planets the forces which have experienced their external manifestations in these five parts of the world.

“If you form a more and more distinct and concrete conception of this, you will acquire an inner knowledge of these unique racial characters which are spread over the Earth, a knowledge of this peculiar co-operation of the normal and abnormal Spirits of Form. Thus we have, as it were, drawn the picture which holds good for a certain point. But what I have said about the different parts of the Earth, again only holds good for the epoch when, at a definite moment of the old Atlantean evolution, the migration of peoples started from a spot in Atlantis and wandered across to the right place where they could receive the corresponding racial cultivation. Hence in my `Occult Science' you will find it pointed out that in old Atlantis, in certain Mystery Places, named the Atlantean Oracles, the guidance of this distribution of mankind over the Earth was taken in hand, so that in fact that equilibrium, that state of balance could be brought about which led to the corresponding distribution of the races. In one such Mystery-Oracle the truths of which we are now speaking were always investigated, and originally man was entirely guided by them. In this manner, what happened on the Earth was correspondingly directed from such centres.

“In the stream of peoples that traveled across Africa and crystallised into the Ethiopian race, we have to look for an impulse which could be given by the Mercury-Oracle, in which one could clearly observe how the normal Spirits of Form, (the six Elohim and Jahve or Jehovah) co-operated, and how the abnormal Spirits of Form whose activities proceeded from the centre of Mercury also worked in. According to the astrological co-operation of these various centres of force, the point of equilibrium was sought for on our Earth, and in accordance with this the centre of balance was taken as the point of radiation for the race in question.

“The formation of the other races was also directed in a similar way. In accordance with this, the great map is then drawn, into which are entered the influences with respect to peoples, families, etc. That is the great map, which is an image of the heavenly activity which originates through the forces of the heavenly powers flowing into man, radiating back from him, and forming his destiny. What may we now consider a man of the Mercury race, of the Ethiopian race as being? We may so look upon him that we say: This man is originally destined and organised by the Elohim to express in himself the whole human nature. But now from the Mercury centre the abnormal Spirits of Form worked with great power and caused man to be so varied that the form of the Ethiopian race arose; and it was the same with each of the other races. Thereby the streams of the peoples were guided in quite a definite way from the original centre, and thus the line which I drew for you a few days ago originated.

“You must therefor imagine the Spirits of Form radiating from a centre. We have to suppose this centre as being at a definite period of time in old Atlantis. There we have that which sank down into the Atlantean continent and shaped it in such a way that the human spirits were brought under the rulership of the abnormal Spirits of Form.

“Thus were the great foundations of the races created, and when man looks up into the infinite expanses of the heavens, he must there seek the forces which constitute him. They constitute him however in their rays which return from the Earth. When he looks up to the normal Spirits of Form, to the Elohim, he is looking up to what is centred in the several Planetary Spirits (with the exception of the Sun and Moon), he sees that which makes him belong to a particular race.

“Now how do these Race-spirits work in and upon man? They work in a very unique way, so that, as one might say, they excite his forces first of all when they reach the physical body. You know that what we call the four fundamental parts of man, are projected and imaged in certain parts of the physical body, so that we may say, the `I' images itself in the blood; the astral body in the nervous system; the etheric or life-body in the glandular system, and only the physical body stands for itself, it is an .image of its own being, and for the man of the present day it has all its laws within itself. The `I' reflects itself in the blood, the astral body in the nervous system, the etheric body in the glandular system.

“Those spiritual Beings, who there seethe and boil in man so that his racial character may come about, cannot at first work directly into his higher parts. They seethe first of all in these images of the higher parts in the physical body. They cannot as yet enter right into the physical body, but they seethe in the other three members, in that which is the image of the `I', the blood; in the image of the astral body, the nervous system; and in that which is the image of the etheric body, the glandular system. In these three systems, which belong to the physical body but are reflections of the higher members, the Race-spirits, the abnormal Spirits of Form seethe.

“Here you see that the physical body of man is determined from within; so that these various spiritual Beings set to work in those parts of the physical body which are the projections, the shadows of the higher members. Now where for instance does Mercury set to work? I say Mercury, so as to include all the abnormal Spirits of Form to be found in Mercury. He intervenes by co-operating with others, especially in the glandular system. He seethes in the glandular system, and there are expressed the forces which originate through the preponderance of the Mercury forces, which work in the Ethiopian race. Everything which gives the Ethiopian race its special characteristics comes from the fact that the Mercury forces seethe and surge in the glandular system of this people. What modifies the universal human form into the special form of the Ethiopian race with black skin and wooly hair and so on, is the result of their activity. This modification of the common human form comes therefor from these forces.

“If you now pass over to Asia, you find there in a similar manner something we might describe as Venus forces, as an abnormal development of the Spirits of Form. These Venus forces operate by attacking principally that which we call the reflection of the astral body, the nervous system. They operate however in a peculiar way, and indeed not directly as Venus-spirits upon the nervous system. For the nervous system can be affected in two indirect ways; one is through the respiration. When the breathing is specially worked upon, these activities establish themselves in man's respiratory and nervous system, and give it a definite form. This indirect way is selected by the abnormal Spirits of Form whom we may call Venus Beings, in the Malay race, in the yellow tinted races of Southern Asia, and towards the Malay Archipelago. Just as the glandular type of man is spread over the land of Ethiopia, so over these parts of Malaya there is spread the type of man in whom the abnormal Spirits of Form work upon the nervous system indirectly through the respiratory system. The transformation there brought about, certainly expresses itself more in that part of the nervous system which we sum up in the expression `Solar Plexus', therefor not really in the higher nervous system but in that mysterious part of the nervous system which runs into strands parallel with the spinal marrow and spreads out in various directions. This part of the nervous system, therefor, is worked upon indirectly through the respiratory system, this part which in our sense does not yet belong to the higher mental activity. These Venus-forces which work in this race, seethe deep down in the unconscious organism.

“Now let us go up over the wide Mongolian plains. In those plains those Spirits of Form are principally active who work indirectly through the blood. There in the blood is brewed that which brings about a modification of humanity and produces the basic character of the race. There is, however, something very peculiar in this Mongolian race. There the Mars spirits enter the blood: But they work on it in a quite definite way, viz. they are able to work towards the six Elohim who are centred in the Sun. In the Mongolian race, therefor, they work towards these six Elohim, and in doing so they make a special attack in the other direction towards Jahve or Jehovah Who has separated His field of action from that of the six Elohim.

“But besides this co-operation of the Mars-spirits with the six Elohim and Jahve, which results in the Mongolian race, there is still something quite special. Just as the six Elohim from the Sun and Jahve from the Moon act upon the Mongolians, whilst the Mars-spirits work towards them, so in another case we must imagine that from the direction of the Moon the Jahve forces again meet and co-operate with the Mars-spirits, and that thus a special modification arises. Here you have a special modification of humanity, viz., that which belongs to the Semitic race, explained from its occult background. In the Semites you have a modification of collective humanity, in which Jahve or Jehovah shuts Himself off from the other Elohim and invests this people with a special character, by co-operating with the Spirits of Mars, in order to bring about the special modification of this people.

“You will now see the special; element contained in the Semitic people and its mission. In a certain deep occult sense the writer of the Bible was able to say, that Jahve or Jehovah had made this people his own, and when to this you add the fact that there was here a co-operation with the Mars-spirits who direct their attacks chiefly upon the blood, then you will also comprehend why the continuous action of the blood from generation to generation was of quite special importance to the Semitic Hebrew people, and why the God Jahve describes Himself in the Semitic people as the God who comes down in the blood from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and so on. That which always works in the blood, that which must be fought out in the blood, - the co-operation with the Mars-spirits, - that is one of the mysteries which lead us deeply into the wise guidance of the entire humanity of the Earth.”

“We shall now go back still further and trace how the Spirits and Beings who have their centre in Jupiter seethe and boil in man. These select for themselves the second point of attack, so as to act indirectly upon the nervous system. The one point of attack is through the senses of man; the other point of attack which works into the nervous system, goes indirectly through the respiratory system into the solar plexus. The attack proceeding from Jupiter goes indirectly through the sense impressions and streams out from thence upon those portions of the nervous system which are centred in the brain and spinal cord. Here flow in, in those races belonging to Jupiter humanity, those forces which give the special stamp to the racial character. This is more or less the case in the Aryans, in the peoples of Asia Minor and Europe, those whom we reckon as belonging to the Caucasian race. In these arises that modification of universal humanity which comes from the abnormal Spirits of Form whom we may describe as Jupiter Spirits, working upon the senses. The Caucasians therefor are determined through the senses.

“Now you will understand that a people like the Greeks, who were quite specially and consciously under the influence of Jupiter or Zeus, who felt themselves to be a centre for the Zeus influence, were pre-eminently determined by what flows into the nervous system through the senses Of course the Greeks were also influenced by the Elohim who stream from the Sun. But the case was such, that among the Greeks everything that acts upon the senses was devoted to the influence of Jupiter or Zeus, and by that means this people attained its greatness. They saw the spiritual in their perceptions of the physical, and hence became the basic people for all sculpture, for all external form-giving.

“All the people of Asia Minor and especially the European peoples, are on the whole modifications of this Jupiter influence, and you may now divine that, as man has many senses, many modifications can come about . . . One task, which especially devolves upon the Caucasian race is, that it is to tread the path to the spiritual through the senses, for it is built especially upon the senses.

“Herein lies something that leads one into the deeper starting-points of occultism and it will show you that in those peoples whose sign, so to speak, lies in the Venus-character, the principal starting-point, even in occult training, must be made where the breathing is the most important thing. On the other hand in the peoples living more to the West, the starting-point of their deepening and spiritualising must be taken from what is in the sense world. This is possessed by peoples who occupy countries more towards the West, in their stages of higher cognition, in imagination, inspiration and intuition, in accordance with the way in which the Jupiter-spirit originally modified the character.

“Hence there were always these two centres in the evolution of humanity, the one ruled by the Spirits of Venus, and the other ruled more by the Spirits of Jupiter. The Spirits of Jupiter were especially observed in those Mysteries in which the three Individualities met together, the three spiritual Beings, Buddha, Zarathustra or Zarathas in his later incarnation, and that great leader of humanity whom we described by the name Skythianos. That is the Council which, under the guidance of One still greater, set itself the task of investigating into the mysterious forces which must be developed for the evolution of Humanity, whose starting-point was taken from that part which is originally connected with the Jupiter forces and which was preordained in the map of the Earth already mentioned.

“Finally, what we may describe as the abnormal Spirits of Form who have their centre in Saturn, act upon the glandular system, but in a round-about way through all the other systems. Therefor in all that we must describe as the Saturn-race, in everything to which we must attribute the Saturn-character, we must look for something which draws together and embraces that which leads again to the evening twilight of humanity, whose development brings humanity in a certain way to a real conclusion, to a dying away. The expression of this action on the glandular system is seen in the American-Indian race. From that action comes its mortality, its disappearance. The Saturn influence acts through all the other systems finally upon the glandular system. It separates out the hardest parts of man, and we may therefor say that this dying-out consists in a sort of ossification, and this may also clearly be seen in the outer form.” (54, pp. 71-78)

23 Aug. 1910

“An exact repetition of the past never takes place. Each evolutionary impulse happens once only, and happens for its own sake and not for the sake of repeating something. Thus to produce what we know today as human, earthly consciousness all the processes which have actually brought this earth about were needed - for that purpose man had to be there as man. It was impossible for such a form of consciousness to develop at an earlier stage of evolution. To us an object is something outside us; earlier, all the Beings of whom we can speak had a consciousness which made no distinction between outer and inner, so it would have been nonsense for any of them to say: `Something is standing before me.' They could only say: `We live and weave in the cosmos; we create, and in creating are aware of this our creation; objects do not stand before us, do not appear to be before us.” (19, pg. 95)

24 Aug. 1910

“During the night our astral body has been united, through its effluence, with the entire cosmos. It has been united with all the planetary Beings associated with our earth. It has radiated its effluence to Mercury, Mars, Jupiter and so on, and in these planetary Beings are the strengthening forces which give the astral body what it needs to enable us on its return to continue our waking life in the physical and etheric bodies. During the night our astral bodies are diffused and enlarged to a cosmic existence. The astral body winds its way in spiral form out of the physical body. It moves as a cloud in spiral form. What we see is only the beginning of the currents which emanate from the astral body. They go out into cosmic space and gather forces, they drink in the forces of the planets. And if anyone tells you that the astral body is what can be seen by a clairvoyant hovering like a cloud in the vicinity of the physical body, it is not true. During the night the astral body is poured out over the whole of tour solar system. During sleep it is united with the planetary Beings. That is the very reason why we call it the astral body.” (19, pp. 104-105)

3 Sept. 1910

“If in the light of what is said in the book `Occult Science' we picture the Earth after its separation from the Sun, and then the departure of the Moon-forces from the Earth after which the Earth opened itself to the Sun, we find Venus and Mercury between Earth and Sun. Dividing the whole space between Sun and Earth into three, we can say: the Earth separated from the Sun and sent forth the Moon towards the Sun. Then Venus and Mercury separated off from the Sun and came towards the Earth. Venus and Mercury, therefore, move from the Sun towards the Earth; the Moon goes from the Earth towards the Sun.” (62, pg. 63)

4 Sept. 1910

“Through the blood of the generations as the outer instrument of the Jahve-revelation, there must be expressed the same order as that made manifest in the courses of the stars. To put it differently: in the sequence of the generations, in the blood-kinship of Abraham's descendants, there must be a mirror-image, a reflection, of the stellar script in the heavens. Hence the promise made to Abraham: The ordering of thy descendants shall be that of the stars of heaven! (Genesis, XXIII,17) Such is the correct version of the sentence that is usually rendered to mean that the descendants would be as numerous as the stars in heaven - This implies number only and is not the true meaning. The true meaning is that the line of the descendants was to be in accordance with an order perceptible in the groupings of the stars, which in turn are an expression of the speech of the Gods. Looking upwards, men beheld an order such as is manifest in the Zodiac. The positions and relationships of the planets in the Zodiac formed constellations from which was drawn the language used to proclaim the deeds of the Gods in the Universe. The firm bond demonstrated in the Zodiac and in the relations of the planets to the twelve constellations was to come to expression in the blood-kinship of the descendants of Abraham.

“The twelve sons of Jacob, also the twelve tribes of the Hebrew people, are therefor images of the twelve constellations of the Zodiac. Just as the language of the Gods is expressed in these twelve constellations, so does Jahve manifest himself in the blood flowing through the generations of the Hebrew people, divided into the twelve tribes descending from the twelve sons of Jacob. Conditions established in the Zodiac are designated by the name of the planet concerned - Venus, Mercury, Sun, as the case may be. And we have heard how certain parallelisms can be drawn between particular periods in the historical life of the Hebrew people and the paths of the planets through the Zodiac. Thus there is a parallelism between the age of David, the royal minstrel, and Hermes or Mercury; similarly, between the period of the Babylonian captivity - when we see the form taken by the Jahve-revelation six centuries before our era as the result of a new impulse - and the planet Venus.

“It was to be indicated to Abraham that there is a parallelism between the place of a personality such as David in the line of the generations, and the position of Mercury in the Zodiac. The tribe of Judah corresponds to the constellation of Leo and the advent of David into that tribe would correspond, in the history of the Hebrew people, to the cosmic phenomenon of the occultation of Leo by Mercury (Mercury in Leo). Such occultations are indicated in many places: in the actual succession, in the conferments of kingly or priestly offices, in the battles or victories of one tribe or another, indeed in the whole history of the Hebrews. All this was implicit in the momentous words: Thy descendants shall be ordered in accordance with the harmony of the stars in heaven. We must never accept the trivial interpretations so often placed upon records founded on occultism but realise their immense profundity.” (62, pp. 77-79)

“Again, the best approach to this secret was to turn to movements and constellations in the Cosmos, to the manifestations of the stars themselves. As we have heard, 6 times 7 stages lead to the secrets of man's inner nature; the secrets of cosmic space are reached after 12 times 7 = 84 stages. A man who has passed 12 times 7 stages arrives at the point were the labyrinth of the spiritual forces of the Cosmos is no longer bewildering; he attains the state of calm in which he can find his bearings in this labyrinth and see through its intricacies. In a certain sense that too was a teaching given by the Essenes.

“When a man who possesses the clairvoyant faculties here described goes to sleep, his being flows out into conditions expressed in the secret of the number 12 times 7. But at the last of these stages he is already in the supersensible; for when he has completed the 11 times 7 stages he has reached the boundary of the conditions to which the numerical secrets apply. Just as the 7 times 7 stages have already led into the Spiritual, so too have the 12 times 7. To reach the Spiritual along this path a man must have passed through 11 times 7 stages in the astral body and Ego. This is indicated by the stellar script itself, 7 being the number of the planets and 12 that of the constellations of the Zodiac which the soul must traverse in cosmic space. As the seven planets group themselves within the twelve zodiacal constellations and pass in front of them, when a man is ascending in soul into the Cosmos he must pass through 7 times twelve, or rather 7 times 11 stages to reach the Spiritual.

“You can, if you like, picture the twelve constellations of the Zodiac as the spiritual periphery, with man himself in the centre. If he is to reach the Spiritual he cannot begin by spreading as it were from the centre, but he must expand in spirals, gyrating into 7 spirals and passing all the twelve constellations in each complete circuit - therefore 7 times 12 stages. Man expands in spirals gradually into the Cosmos - all this is of course only a figurative description - and if, circling in this way, he were to have passed through the twelve constellations for the seventh time, he would have reached the Divine-Spiritual. Then, instead of looking into the Cosmos from the centre, he looks inwards from the spiritual periphery, from the twelve stations, and from these vantage-points he can behold the external world and all that is in it. There must be twelve such vantage-points; one alone does not suffice. Thus a man who aspired to reach the Divine-Spiritual must sublimate astral body and Ego through 11 times 7 stages; when twelve times 7 stages had been scaled, he was within the Spiritual.”(62, pp. 98-99)

10 Sept. 1910

“In ancient terminology, human beings en masse were referred to as a `thousand' and when it was desired to particularise, a specific number was added. For example, men of the fourth epoch of civilization were the `fourth thousand' and those whose mode of life was already that of the fifth epoch were the `fifth thousand'. These were simply termini technici. Hence the disciples could say: during the waking state we are aware of what Christ's power transmits to us from the Sun-forces radiating from the seven day-constellations; we receive the nourishment that is destined for men of the fourth epoch, the `fourth thousand'. And in our clairvoyant state during sleep we are made aware, through the forces radiating from the five night constellations, of what applies to the immediate future, to the `fifth thousand'. - Food that is destined for men of the fourth epoch, that is to say for the `four thousand', comes down from Heaven through the seven day constellations, the seven `heavenly loaves'; and men of the fifth epoch - the `five thousand' - are fed through the five night-constellations, the five `heavenly loaves'. The point of division between the day-constellations and the night-constellations is indicated by specific mention of the constellation of Pisces, the Fishes.

“A secret is touched upon here. Indication of something deeply significant, namely the magical intercourse of Christ with His disciples. Christ makes it clear to them that He is not speaking of the old leaven of the Pharisees but is bringing down heavenly food to them from the Sun-forces of the Cosmos. On one occasion He has at His disposal only the seven loaves of the seven day-constellations, and on another the five loaves of the five night-constellations. And between the day-constellations and the night-constellations stands the constellation of Pisces, the Fishes, indicating the division. Indeed in one place, for the sake of even greater clarity, mention is made of two fishes.” (62, pp. 176-177)

11 Sept. 1910

[Symbols for the constellation of Cancer signify a jump or gap in material evolution; recent symbol a spiral with a gap from inturn to outturn; more ancient symbol an ass with her foal] (62, pp. 199-200, précis by RSWB)

10 Nov. 1910

“When we speak of `soul' in the sense of spiritual science, the idea of inwardness, of inner experience, is always bound up with this concept. And when we talk of `spirit' with reference to the world around us, we are clear that in everything we can see or with which we can be confronted, there is a manifestation of spirit. Man would find himself in a strange self-contradiction were he not to take for granted the presence of spirit in all the phenomena of existence around him. Without falling into disastrous self-contradiction, nobody can have an intelligent grasp of the external world unless he admits that what he eventually finds in his own spirit concerning the external world - the concepts and ideas he acquires in order to understand outer phenomena - has something to do with the things themselves. If when a man believes he has learnt anything from the concepts he has formed about the things of the outer world, he will not admit that there lives in these concepts something that is contained in the things themselves, he can never advance to knowledge - if he is to be true to himself and understand the nature of his own acts of cognition. He alone can speak of knowledge in the real sense who says to himself: `What I can ultimately discover and retain, what I can bring to realisation in my spirit in acts of knowledge, must be contained, primarily, in the things themselves. And in so far as I take something into my spirit from the things of the world, no matter to which kingdom they belong, then in all kingdoms I must pre-suppose the existence of spirit.”

“Therefore in speaking of `spirit' we realise that it reveals itself in all worlds, and we try to understand how it pours into, becomes manifest in these worlds. We speak differently of `soul'. We speak of `soul' when the spiritual - that which we assimilate with our intellect, our reason, and through which we cognise things - when a being experiences the spirit inwardly. We ascribe soul to a being which not only takes in but inwardly experiences spirit, creates out of the spirit. Thus we speak of the soul only when spirit is active in a being confronting us. In this sense we find spirit inwardly creative in man and animal.” (130, pp. 1-3)

“The moment death occurs the physical body becomes a combination of purely chemical and physical forces and processes. That the human body during life is extricated from the sway of these chemical and physical processes which take possession of it immediately death occurs, is due to the etheric or life-body. During life the etheric body wrenches the chemical and physical substances and forces from their purely physical operations and surrenders them again to these physical activities only at the moment of death.

“It is very easy to argue against this, but these arguments fall to the ground when the matter is more deeply understood. Quite apart from the fact that the etheric body is a reality to the spiritual investigator, logical thinking will itself disclose that a living organism is inconceivable without the existence of an etheric or life-body. Therefore in spiritual science we ascribe an etheric body also to the plants. We say: Whereas man has still higher supersensible members - the astral body and the `I” - the plant has only physical body and etheric body; and a mineral, as we see it in the outer world, consists of physical body only.

“Of the animal we say that an astral body is membered in the physical body and etheric body - associating with these terms for the time being, nothing beyond what has just been said.

“In the astral body, the spirit which, in the crystal, for example, produces the structure, becomes inward, inwardly and organically formative. In an animal the sense-organs, the functions of the animal soul, arise out of the inner organisation itself. Whereas in the mineral the spirit expends itself in elaborating the form, it remains inwardly alive in the animal. And we speak of this inner, living activity, this existence of the spirit within the animal-organisation itself, as an activity of the astral body. But of man we say that in him the astral body is also permeated by an `I', an ego, and we shall presently see what significance this has for human life.

“What do we really mean when we speak of `spirit'? We ascribe to spirit that reality which we ourselves experience, as it were, in our intelligence. Through our intelligence we execute one thing or another; we bring the forces of different beings into an ensemble. This creative intelligence of ours has a particular characteristic. In that it enters into us in temporal existence, and is a creative force, we form a concept of intelligence, of reason, of creative intelligence, and then we look at the universe around us. - We should have to be very shortsighted before we could possibly ascribe intelligence, all that we call `spirit', to ourselves alone. The incapacity to penetrate the riddles of existence is due, fundamentally, to the fact that man is nevertheless prone to ascribe intelligence to himself alone and can never answer the question: How comes it that I am able to apply intelligence to existence? But when we look around us and see that the things of space and time manifest in such a way that our intelligence can apprehend the existence of law, then we say: What lives within us as intelligence is also outspread in space and time, is actively at work in space and time. When we look at the lifeless realm of nature, we say that there the spirit is, as it were, frozen into matter, that our intelligence can apprehend, can lay hold of what comes to expression in the forms, in the law-determined workings of matter - and thereby we have in our intelligence a kind of reflection of the spirit weaving and working through the world. If we thus contemplate the spirit in the great universe, and then compare the way in which it is frozen, as it were, in the lifeless realm of existence with the way it confronts us in the animal, we say to ourselves: If we look at any particular animal, we see before us a self-enclosed existence, creative in the same way as the spirit outspread in space and time is creative. And a feeling will dawn in us of why those who knew what they were doing, called this spirit working actively in the animal, the `astral body'. They turned their eyes to the great universe through which the stars move in their courses and which men apprehend through their intelligence, and they said: `The spirit lives in the ordering of the universe and in a single animal organism we see a certain conclusion, we see the spirit bounded by the animal's skin.' That which is active in the animal and is identical with what is outspread in space and time, they designated as the `astral body' in the animal organism.” (130, pp. 5-8)

17 Nov. 1910

“In the animal form and organisation the spirit works as it were directly. In man it does not work directly; an intermediate member thrusts itself in which can be very easily observed in life. As man confronts us when we observe him, this intermediate member which brings about a looser connection between the spirit and bodily nature is expressed in what we call the self-conscious ego.

“Here we find above all - we drew attention to this last time - that man is dependent on the life of his environment, of the world outside, in relation to his language, his way of thinking and also to the extent he has developed a consciousness of self. And we see human activities arise in such a way that they may not be looked for in the line of heredity any more than, let us say, the original warmth necessary for hatching a hen's egg may be sought within the egg; it has to come from without. So we find that the things of which man has need for his development have to be acquired through something within him; whereas in the case of the animal it is imprinted into him by the spirit.” (131, pp. 5-6)

“If some day people will begin to give a little thought to what is here in question, namely, the importance for human life that man should not be organised from the outset to receive a definite imprint, of balance, of individual movement and of the sense of life, but must himself struggle to attain them - when they can discover how true it is that in spatial directions we have to do with realities, whether a spine is in a horizontal or vertical relation to space, or whether the blood circulates in this or that direction - then they will see how essential is the way in which such organisations are inserted into the whole cosmic connection. We should be obliged to see in reality, for example, in the spatial direction of a certain line, something of essential importance.” (131, pg. 30)

6 Dec. 1910

[The two basic types of initiation are when the candidate penetrates into his own being or expands into the cosmos. Those who expand into the cosmos, but cannot achieve the highest, Sun, initiation are directed to the forces of cosmic secrets indicated symbolically by the signs of the Zodiac.

St. John the Baptist was initiated by grace into the Aquarius initiation. But he recognised that someone higher would follow who was initiated into the Pisces forces. Into this one the Christ would enter. This is deeply connected with the birth of the `I' in humanity.

Physical reality is really only the outcome of intersecting cosmic forces - it has no independent reality of its own. To understand the true reality one must look past the result to what produces the result.

If the Sun passes from Aries to Virgo, then Libra to Pisces must be the night constellations.] (83, pp. 71-78; précis by RSWB)

8 Dec. 1910

“For that part of the earth where it is summer, there is something similar to what goes on in the human being in the condition of sleep. The earth gives itself to everything that comes down from the sun and forms itself as it should under the influence of the sun activity. In that part of the earth where it is winter, it closes itself off from the influence of the sun, lives within itself. There it is the same as when the human being has drawn together into the small, inner world, living in himself, while for the part of the earth where it is summer it is the same as when the human being is surrendered to the whole outer world.

“There is a law in the spiritual world: if we direct our attention to spiritual entities far removed from one another - such as, for example, the human being here on one side and the earth organism on the other - the states of consciousness must be pictured as reversed in a certain sense. With the human being, stepping out into the great world is the sleep condition. For the earth, the summer (which one would be inclined to consider a waking condition) is something that can only be compared with the human being falling asleep. The human being steps out into the great world when he falls asleep; in summer the earth with all its forces enters the realm of sun activity, only we must be able to think of the earth and the sun as spirit-filled organisms.” (20, pg. 14)

18 Dec. 1910

[There are twelve different ways of initiation into the Sun mysteries, symbolised by the Sun standing in each of the Zodiacal constellations.

The symbol of the initiation of the seven holy Rishis is the Sun in Taurus; the spectacle in the firmament reveals their mystery. This is also expressed in that the seven stars of the Pleiades stand in Taurus, and this was the region where the whole solar system entered this universe.

Day or summer constellations are Aries to Libra; night or winter ones are Scorpio to Aquarius and Pisces.]

“ . . . Since the last two lie on the night side, the Sun's rays coming from them must not only traverse physical space but they must send the spiritual light of the Sun, which passes through the Earth, through spiritual space.”

[The facts of spiritual life on earth have determined the Zodiac names, by transferal to the heavens.]

[As the physical Sun sets the spiritual Sun begins to rise.] “Physically, the Sun's course is from Virgo to Leo, Cancer, Gemini, Taurus, Aries; spiritually its course is from Virgo to Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn and Aquarius to Pisces.” (83, pp. 206-211, précis by RSWB)


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