Saturday, April 30, 2016

Rock of Ages

The Goetheanum


On a Columnar Self—
How ample to rely
In Tumult—or Extremity—
How good the Certainty

That Lever cannot pry—
And Wedge cannot divide
Conviction—That Granitic Base—
Though None be on our Side—

Suffice Us—for a Crowd—
Ourself—and Rectitude—
And that Assembly—not far off
From furthest Spirit—God—





— Emily Dickinson






"It would be better for me...that multitudes of men should disagree with me rather than that I, being one, should be out of harmony with myself."  — Socrates, as quoted in "Gorgias" by Plato

The Altar of Humanity
 The Solar Plexus : The Manipura Chakra : The Stronghold of Manu


Rudolf Steiner, from his final lecture given September 28, 1923:

"This ability to rise to the point at which thoughts about spirit can grip us as powerfully as can anything in the physical world, this is Michael power. It is confidence in the ideas of spirit — given the capacity for receiving them at all — leading to the conviction: I have received a spiritual impulse, I give myself up to it, I become the instrument for its execution. First failure — never mind! Second failure — never mind! A hundred failures are of no consequence, for no failure is ever a decisive factor in judging the truth of a spiritual impulse whose effect has been inwardly understood and grasped. We have full confidence in a spiritual impulse, grasped at a certain point of time, only when we can say to ourself: My hundred failures can at most prove that the conditions for realizing the impulse are not given me in this incarnation; but that this impulse is right I can know from its own nature. And if I must wait a hundred incarnations for the power to realize this impulse, nothing but its own nature can convince me of the efficacy or impotence of any spiritual impulse. 

If you will imagine this thought developed in the human heart and soul as great confidence in spirit, if you will consider that man can cling firm as a rock to something he has seen to be spiritually victorious, something he refuses to relinquish in spite of all outer opposition, then you will have a conception of what the Michael power, the Michael being, really demands of us; for only then will you comprehend the nature of the great confidence in spirit. We may leave in abeyance some spiritual impulse or other, even for a whole incarnation; but once we have grasped it we must never waver in cherishing it within us, for only thus can we save it up for subsequent incarnations. And when confidence in spirit will in this way have established a frame of mind to which this spiritual substance appears as real as the ground under our feet — the ground without which we could not stand — then we shall have in our heart and soul a feeling of what Michael really expects of us."

"I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain."  — Galatians 2:19-21

To infinity, and beyond! Homeopathy and the relationship between external nature and man

Diagram 21 from Spiritual Science and Medicine




Spiritual Science and Medicine. Lecture 11 of 20.
Rudolf Steiner, Dornach, Switzerland, March 21, 1920:


Yesterday we reached a domain very far distant from our starting point. Let us again begin with something quite concrete and material and build upon and around it. You will agree that we must approach our task indirectly and by a circuitous route, because of the shortness of our time, and because of the nature of our themes. We cannot follow the method that begins with the axioms and ascends to more and more complex ideas.
Today I have undertaken to lead you a stage further on our way, starting from the nature of vegetable carbon, carbo vegetabilis. We have already considered the chicory, the wild strawberry, and other plants; in like manner we have now to examine the attributes of this remarkable substance, which can be found almost anywhere but is nevertheless one of the most remarkable materials in the world. This will give the most cogent illustration of the need to widen the horizon of our observations if we wish to obtain a real insight into nature.
It was most interesting to hear Dr. K. maintain in last night's lecture that the chemistry of the future must become quite different from what it is now and to note how often he used the term “physiology” — in token of the bridge to be built between physiological and chemical science.
I was often reminded of many matters that cannot as yet be dealt with explicitly in public lectures, as a public audience still lacks the predisposition for understanding. We find carbon in extra-human nature — or in what I might term the nature that appears extra-human to man. For what in the whole of nature's immensity is really extra-human? Nothing, indeed. For all that is external to our being in those portions of the world we are able to observe has been expelled or removed from man in the course of human evolution. Mankind has had to pass through stages of development only possible because certain essential processes take their course in the outer world he is faced with, and he is thus enabled to take certain other processes into himself for his own use. So that there is always a complementary polarity and kinship between certain external and certain internal processes.
I have found a remarkable inner convergence between the remarks of Dr. K. on the necessity for chemistry to become physiological and the interesting lecture of Dr. Sch. the other day on the need for a spiritually scientific concept of the aim and purpose of homeopathic preparation. Perhaps I do not express this adequately, but those who have heard these lectures, especially Dr. K.'s, will grasp my meaning. His final sentences were most noteworthy. He made use of a term with which I have been concerned for decades, a term often heard: he said that even homeopathic practitioners are somewhat afraid of becoming “mystical”; i.e., chary of being reputed mystics.
My reason for studying that subject was due to very definite opinions, which were firmly based on facts. The essential thing striven for in homeopathic treatment (do not misunderstand me; it is necessary to use somewhat drastic terms in order to state the case clearly) is not found so much in the substances employed as in the processes to which these substances are subjected in the course of preparing the medicaments: for example, the preparation of silicon or of vegetable carbon. The process of preparation contains the clue.
I have made many investigations into what actually happens in the attempt to prepare homeopathic remedies; including for our present purposes, and as corroborated by Dr. R., the Ritter Method (although Fräulein Ritter herself will not admit this). What does in fact occur when homeopathic preparations are made? For it is the preparation which matters. Take, for instance, silicic acid, and treat it so as to raise its potency to a very high degree. What is it that you do? You work toward a certain point; and in nature everything is based on rhythmic processes. You work toward a certain zero point, through a scale in which the specific attributes of the substance, i.e., those which appear first of all, are revealed. Just as the spendthrift, who has a fortune and wastes it recklessly until he passes the zero point, comes to a condition in which there is no more positive fortune, but a negative factor, namely debts, so the essential qualities of external substances can be treated. We reach a zero point, where the effects of the substance in ponderable amounts are no longer perceptible. What if we proceed further? The results do not simply vanish into nothingness, but the opposite effects are produced and are introduced into the surrounding medium. I have always had the experience of perceiving the opposite effect to what is normal to the substances in question, whatever medium was used to receive the minutely subdivided doses of the substance. This medium adopts a new configuration; just as one who changes from the status of owner to that of debtor becomes a different factor in social life, so a substance changes to a state opposite to the normal, and imparts this condition, which was formerly hidden inside it, to its environment. If a substance during its subdivision displays certain characteristics, it changes at a certain point in this subdivisional process, acquiring another character; it becomes able to permeate its environment with the former characteristics, and to activate the medium in which it is treated in the same direction.
This activating process may take various forms. The “opposite reaction” mentioned above may be directly provoked. But it may also happen that this opposite reaction may take the form of causing the substance affected to become fluorescent or phosphorescent, either later on or under exposure to light. The reaction provoked has thus taken the form of irradiation into the environment. These facts must be given due weight. There is no question here of a plunge into mysticism; it is a question of observing nature in its real activities, so as to enter into its rhythmic course even where we study the qualities of the substances. I might almost call this study a leit motiv, a main theme in the search for the effects of substances. Increase potency and you will reach a zero point; beyond that point opposite effects appear. But this is not all: the further path on the negative side leads to another zero point for these opposite effects. Passing the second zero, you will come to a higher form of efficiency tending in the same direction as the first sequence, but of quite a different nature. It would be valuable and appropriate to plot out the different effect of potencies by means of curves. But it would be necessary to construct these curves in a special manner: first to delineate a curve and then, on arriving at the point where certain lower potencies cease to work and are superseded by the working of higher potencies, to turn sharply at right-angles and continue the curve into space. We shall deal further with these subjects in this course; they are interwoven with the whole kinship of man to extra-human nature.
Let us return now to carbo vegetabilis. Anyone considering the obvious qualities of this substance would say that if taken in large doses, vegetable carbon produces a very definite set of disease symptoms. These definite symptoms, according to the views of the homeopath, may be combatted by administering the same substance at a higher degree of potency.
The spiritual scientist views vegetable carbon as something impelling him to turn to extra-human nature and to study the nature of these carbon products, the coal deposits of the Earth, which have advanced more in mineralization. He finds that the main role of carbon in the Earth process is in connection with oxygen consumption. The Earth's carbon content regulates the oxygen content of the atmospheric environment. One arrives at a direct insight into the fact that the Earth — as indeed must be the case — is an organism, with a function of respiration, and that the carbon content of the Earth has something to do with the breath the Earth draws. The kind of chemistry demanded in the lecture yesterday will only develop if — so to speak — the “coal being” is considered in connection with the respiratory function either in mankind or in animals. For in the process which links the carbonization of the Earth and the oxygen process in the atmosphere, there operates something spiritual science recognizes as the tendency toward animality — yes, literally, the tendency to become animal. This tendency can only be characterized in a way sure to be found startling. For we must needs state that there is a force at work in the interactions between the carbonization of the Earth and the processes appertaining to the oxygen content of the atmosphere that calls for the real beings, etheric beings — which, however in contrast to the animal kingdom, are in perpetual motion away from the Earth, striving away from the Earth's surface. We can only begin to comprehend animality itself by considering it as something held together by the Earth in reaction to this process of “de-animalization” of the Earth. The animals and their processes are the outcome of this reaction of the Earth.
To introduce vegetable carbon into the human organism is, therefore, nothing less than to introduce an element with an urgent tendency toward animality. All the symptoms that ensue — from flatulence, to distensions, to ill-smelling diarrhœa and so forth, even to the formation of hemorrhoids and, on the other hand, all manner of acute and burning pains — have this one origin. That animality which has been expelled from mankind in the course of evolution, in order that mankind might attain the full human nature, is being re-absorbed into man. So we are definitely able to say that if we give a patient vegetable carbon in large doses, we thereby urge and impel him to defend himself against the alien process of animality which has invaded him. He does so by strengthening just that principle which he owes to the expulsion of animality in the course of evolution.
This expulsion of animality in the course of evolution is linked with another potential faculty: it is amazing but true that man in his organism actually produces primary light. In our upper man we really generate light independently. In the lower sphere we possess those defensive organs against complete animalization which are necessary to enable the upper sphere to produce original light. There we have one of the profound differences between man and the animal world: the animals share the other higher spiritual processes equally with mankind, but they are not capable of generating sufficient light in their interior.
Here I must touch on what can only be called a really painful chapter of our modern natural science. However painful, this chapter cannot be concealed from you, for the simple reason that it is essential to the understanding of human relationships with the extra-human world. The main obstacle to an objective assessment of the operation in the human organism of substances in general, and curative substances in particular, is the law of the so-called conservation of energy, and the law of the conservation of matter. These laws have been enunciated as universal laws of nature, but are in absolute opposition to the process of human evolution. For instance, the whole nutritive and digestive function is not what it is assumed to be in the materialist conception. This takes the view that the substances in question — let us take carbon as our example — were quite external to ourselves, before being taken in as food; this is consumed, and passed on, though modified in our organism, and re-absorbed eventually, so that we carry with us, distributed though it may be, the matter taken from the world outside us. And this same matter we carry about within us. There is no difference, in this theory, between the carbon in the external world and the carbon within our organism. But this theory is mistaken. For there is within the human organism the potentiality of completely destroying extra-human carbon through the action of the lower sphere; of expelling this substance from space and then re-creating it anew independently through reaction. Yes, it is true: within us there is a crucible for the creation of extra-human substances and at the same time a power to destroy them. Of course, the science of today will not admit this; not being able to think of the substances in any other way than as a wanderer, in microscopic amounts (restless as Ahasuerus). It knows nothing of the life of matter — of its origin, of its death, nor of how substances die and are reborn within our human organism. This reanimation of carbon is connected with what manifests as the generation of light in normal human beings. This internal generation of light meets the operation of the light from the external world. Our upper organic sphere is designed so as to enable external light and internal light to counteract one another, to operate alternately; and it is the main factor in our human constitution that we have the power of holding these two sources of light apart, so that they only work upon each other, without being welded into one another. Let us suppose that we are standing exposed to the light from the external world, receiving it either through our eyes or through our whole skin. There is a screen, so to speak, between the internal, inherent light within us and the light that operates from without. This external light has actually only the value of an activator for the generation of internal light; thus in letting light pour upon us from outside we activate ourselves to produce inner light.
Now examine this whole process some way further. Consider the region in us which is engaged in the decomposition of carbonic substances. This comprises the kidneys and the whole urinary apparatus and all the related organs situated above the kidneys. We approach the renal process within man if we envisage the process associated with carbon in extra-human nature. And concurrently we find the way in which to apply substances such as vegetable carbon to man. First let us take the minor forms of illness and reason as follows: we have first and foremost in vegetable carbon the possibility of counteracting that animalization in man which provokes nausea — and all the diseased phenomena for which dosage with vegetable carbon is indicated are forms of nausea, and that nausea continued into the interior regions of our bodies. Against the processes there in operation and their products, the effective polar opposite process is the function of the kidney system. Thus if the patient exhibits the symptoms that can be artificially provoked by heavy dosage of vegetable carbon, you can stimulate and promote the whole kidney process with higher potencies of vegetable carbon, and in this way counteract the particular diseased process which resembles the effect of vegetable carbon upon man. Thus it must be essential to consider the response of all renal activities to the increase of potencies of this remedy.
The kidney process may also operate in such a way as to accentuate its polarity to the digestive process; that is to say that in the case of a disturbed digestion (the result of the symptoms distinctive of vegetable carbon) the polar effect appears, of the morbid process in the diseased digestion in the intestine. In short, the result and reactions of administering vegetable carbon are in opposition, on the one hand, to the generation of light. You will realize the meaning of these comments if you visualize the following conditions. Here, then, is the Earth, (see Diagram 21)


Diagram 21 from Spiritual Science and Medicine

 surrounded by air, and over or outside the atmosphere is something different again. The outer layer beyond the atmosphere is first of all what may be described as a sort of warmth mantle round the Earth. If we could ascend straight from the Earth through the atmosphere, we should enter a zone of very different warmth conditions, surprisingly different from what we know on the Earth's surface. At a certain distance from the Earth in space, the contents of this warmth sphere perform much the same office as the atmosphere itself within and below that zone. What of the region beyond? Here (see Diagram 21) we represent the extra-telluric warmth sphere, and here the atmosphere; and beyond, the polar complement of the atmosphere, a region wherein conditions are the complete opposite of those within the atmosphere. In that region, in a state of — if I may coin the word — de-aeration, where the very existence of air is annulled, is the source of what shoots up through the de-aeration and is sent toward us as light.
It is a grave error to suppose that our light on Earth comes from the Sun. That is only a somewhat fatal fantasy on the part of physicists and astronomers. Our light on Earth comes from this outer zone. There it springs up, there it is generated, there it grows, as plants grow in the soil of the Earth. And so we are entitled to say: If man has the power to generate original light of his own, it is due to the power he has reserved to his own formative process, to execute something that is done — apart from him — only in this upper and outer region; he bears the source of an extra-telluric activity within himself. This cosmic source of power operates on the whole of plant life as well as upon mankind — but it affects the vegetable world from outside, whereas man holds something within, which links him with this upper sphere. (See Diagram 21).
Now let us ask ourselves: Suppose we approach the Earth more closely than the atmospheric envelope — do we then penetrate again into man, by that way? Yes: for as we approach the Earth out of the atmosphere, we come to all that is fluid, to the watery element, and we may correctly envisage a fluid zone beneath the zone of air. The fluid zone has also its counterpart, which lies beyond the light-generating stratum. There again, all conditions are the polar opposite of those obtaining in the watery belt round the Earth; and there, too, forces spring to life and operate on the Earth, as light is born in and operates from the zone immediately below. There are the chemical forces working down into the Earth, and it is an absurdity to seek in the various substances themselves for the chemical effects observed on Earth. (See Diagram 21). You will seek them there in vain. They come down to meet the Earth from these regions outside.
But again man bears within him something analogous to this extra-telluric region. If I may so express it: man contains a “chemicator.”
He has within him something of the celestial sphere that contains the source of chemical action. And this function is highly localized in us, in the liver. I ask you to study the remarkable scope of the functional activity of the liver. On the one hand, it exercises what I might call a form of suction, determining the composition of the blood; and on the other hand, by means of the secretion of the gall, it regulates the process leading to blood formation. Consider these manifold activities, and you will have to recognize something which, if carefully studied, leads to a proper chemical science. For the external chemistry of outer science is not to be found on Earth; it is a reflection only of the extra-human “chemical sphere” above. But there is a means of studying this extra-telluric sphere in all the wonderful workings of the human liver.
Now let us return to vegetable carbon and its “internal” attributes, by combining vegetable carbon with the alkalis, for instance with potassium itself (Kali Carbonicum), and studying the resultant effects on the human organism. All alkaline substances (of the nature of lye) operate toward the interior of the organism, affecting the processes of the liver, while all substances akin to vegetable carbon tend to affect the kidneys and urinary tract. We shall be able to trace a distinct interaction between all that is of the nature of lye and all the processes associated with the liver. Careful study of such substances would prove that just as all carbonic substance is linked with “animalization,” so all that is akin to lye is associated with the “vegetable tendency” in man and with the casting off of the vegetable kingdom from mankind.
In previous lectures I have pointed to a process which can help us read the human processes from the activities of Nature. I have referred to what we may simply term the formative process of the oyster shell. In that process, we pass from the resultant of combining carbon with potassium, to the combination with calcium. But the effects that would follow the combination of carbon and calcium, without any third element, are much modified by the powerful phosphoric forces at work in the oyster shell. All these forces are mingled in the oyster shell with certain others, found in the marine environment. And the consideration of the formation of these shells leads us a step further into the relationship between external nature and man. Let us pass downward through the watery zone round the Earth (see Diagram 21) and come to the actual earth formation, to what we might term the solidification. (We should not have any hesitation today in referring to earth, water, air, and fire if the terms linked in association had not become unfashionable and unpopular, as having been used by ignorant folk of old! But among ourselves, surely, we are at liberty to refer to these things.) This solid structure of Earth has also its counterpart in the cosmos — and this is the realm of vitalization, the source of all life formation. The vital forces come to us from a further distance even than the chemical, and within the extra-human Earth — that is, in the “earthly sphere” proper — they are completely killed. (See Diagram 21)
Moreover, our Earth would come to exuberant growth and would form ebullient living outgrowths of carcinomatous nature if this hypertrophy were not checked by the workings of the extra-telluric Mercury (the planet), which develops the mercurial process. It is of value even once to have realized and thought over this matter. The formative force active in earth formation, in the formation of earth substance, we may see retarded, as it were, held back at an earlier stage, in the formation of the oyster shell. The oyster shell is withheld from becoming part of the earth's structure by its ancient and persistent link with the sea, and thus preserves the formative earth process at a more primitive stage when it solidifies. Earthworms cannot do this, as they have no shell. But the same forces proceed from them ceaselessly, and therefore it is entirely true to say that if there were no earthworms there would be no formative forces inside the earth. These worms play a leading role in the process of earth formation. The whole world of the earthworms represents something that passes beyond the formation of the oyster's shell, and has just as much a relationship to the whole earth as the oyster shell. And so the shell formation is suppressed and there arises instead the processes in arable soil and all related processes.
In seeking for the next process, situated still more deeply in the interior of man than that related to the chemical forces and the liver, we come to another human organ — no other than the lungs. The lungs have a dual aspect and office in the human body. The lungs are, of course, the organs of respiration. But however strange this may sound, they are organs of respiration only in what I might term their external aspect. They are at the same time regulators of the internal — the deeply internal — process of earth formation within man. If we follow a way passing from outside the body inward, beginning with the nutritive and digestive process, through the successive formative processes of kidneys, liver, and finally lungs — i.e., to the actual internal formative process of the lungs, apart from their function of drawing breath — and if we examine this process, we find the polar opposite of that which manifests in the oyster as shell formation. The human constitution has interiorized in the formative process of the lungs that which lies outside and above the chemical zone in the outer universe. (See Diagram 21)
Consider the actual symptoms in man, following certain effects of calcium carbonate, and you will again see the strong resemblance and relationship to those activities essential to the vital processes of the lungs in which they manifest their separate life. It is, of course, difficult to distinguish these activities from those entirely ruled by the process of respiration. So it is especially necessary to bear in mind that the lungs serve the human constitution in two directions and in two ways: they have a functional office toward the external world, and a functional office toward the internal as well. Degenerative conditions of the lungs must be sought in processes similar to those proper to shell formation in oysters or similar creatures, such as, for instance, the shell structure of snails.
Today we have approached yesterday's theme from the other side, as it were. The circle we completed yesterday was more perfect, but we shall continue and hope to complete today's line of reasoning in the succeeding lectures. We have learnt to see the activities of kidneys, liver, and lungs respectively as the counterparts to the external activities in the air, in water, and in solid earth. The aerial activities correspond to all that appertains to the kidney system in its widest sense, including all the urinary functions. The innermost part of this functional system, the kidney itself, is connected with the air supply, and thus shortness of breath can arise, and this symptom you will note among the after-effects of dosage with vegetable carbon. So we may say that the deeper causes of respiratory disturbance and shortness of breath must be sought for in the kidney system.
All that is associated with the fluid (watery) element has its deeper causation in the liver system. Just as the shortness of breath and its regulation are associated with the kidneys, thirst is associated with the liver. It would be an interesting investigation to study the interactions of the various qualities and peculiarities of thirst in man with the operations of the liver. And the manifestations of hunger and all its accessory symptoms are intimately connected with the internal condition of the lungs, with their internal metabolism, as it were. On the one hand, of course, hunger, thirst, and the need to draw breath are associated with the ponderable factors of air, water, and earth. With their counterparts in the cosmos many other factors are associated. It is understandable, for instance, that if we need the activating, stimulating influence of light — because the force within us that generates the “juvenile,” original, light has abated — we can best obtain such stimulation from light itself. This is the justification of the light treatment. But light-baths are not always exactly and only light-baths, and this “not only” is important. They are really an exposure to the powers of the chemical zone, an exposure much greater in extent than is normal in the course of our daily life. The really effective factor in most light-baths is the external “chemism” pouring earthward concurrently with light itself. And behind the chemical forces, as may be seen in the rough sketch plan before us, (see Diagram 22) 

Diagram 22 from Spiritual Science and Medicine

are aligned the vital forces themselves, which are also in attendance, as it were, if man is exposed to increased light and increased chemical influence. Thus both the action of chemical forces and the action of vital forces, carried by the light, are extraordinarily beneficial, provided always — and this is all important — the dose is correctly estimated, and care is taken to avoid excessive exposure.
One final comment. You surely need no longer find it strange that current natural science has not succeeded in forming a conception of the genesis of life itself. For in all the regions in which current natural science conducts its search there is only life's polar opposite, thanks to the action of Mercury: there is only death. Life must be sought outside the Earth, in regions into which contemporary natural science is not willing to go. Contemporary science refuses to enter the extra-telluric region. And if it cannot be avoided — well, then, that too is interpreted in materialistic terms. There has been a very fine translation into materialism of the operation of extra-telluric vital forces. It runs as follows: the germs of life have been brought to our Earth from other celestial bodies. So these germs of life have been brought through all distances and hindrances, with such beautiful efficiency, to appear safe on Earth at last; and indeed some scientists have believed meteors and meteorites to have been the high-powered motor cars that brought them here! You see, people actually think that anything can be explained by means of such a materialistic theory. People are used to shift the explanation of phenomena observable on the visible (macroscopic) scale into the microscopic or ultra-microscopic realm, in theories of molecules and atoms; so they believe they have also explained life simply through shifting its origin to another place.







Source: http://wn.rsarchive.org/Lectures/GA/GA0312/19200331p01.html#sthash.ztHXnpKS.dpuf

To the extent that we have insufficient regard for the truth, to that extent we are agents of evil




"Every violation of truth is not only a form of suicide in the liar, but is a stab at the health of human society."  — Ralph Waldo Emerson



The healthy social life: one for all and all for one

video

Rudolf Steiner: "The healthy social life is found when in the mirror of each human soul the whole community finds its reflection and when in the community the virtue of each one is living."




Friday, April 29, 2016

The We/Ours of Eternity



At-one-ment 

Washed in the Blood of the Lamb are We
Awash in a Sunburst Sea
You—Love—and I—Love—and Love Divine:
We are the Trinity

You—Love—and I—We are One-Two-Three
Twining Eternally
Two—Yes—and One—Yes—and also Three:
One Dual Trinity
Radiant Calvary
Ultimate Mystery




"Yoga is skill in action" — the motto of the Himalayan Institute

 
"Yogaḥ Karmasu Kauśalam" ["Yoga is skill in action"]
— Bhagavad Gita 2:50


Light Divine!
Christ Sun!
Warm our hearts!
Enlighten our heads!
That good may come
From what we cradle in our hearts,
What we direct from our heads
With true-to-the-mark, consecrated willing!
 
Not my will but Thine, O Lord, be done, by me and through me.


Thursday, April 28, 2016

Breathes there the man with soul so dead who never to himself hath said, "I feel the Bern!"



Breathes there the man with soul so dead
Who never to himself hath said,
This is my own, my native land!
Whose heart hath ne’er within him burned,
As home his footsteps he hath turned
From wandering on a foreign strand!
If such there breathe, go, mark him well;
For him no minstrel raptures swell;
High though his titles, proud his name,
Boundless his wealth as wish can claim
Despite those titles, power, and pelf,
The wretch, concentred all in self,
Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
And, doubly dying, shall go down
To the vile dust from whence he sprung,
Unwept, unhonored, and unsung.



from "The Lay of the Last Minstrel" by Sir Walter Scott




"Spirit Triumphant! Flame through the weakness of faltering, fainthearted souls! Burn up egoism, kindle compassion, so that selflessness, the lifestream of humanity, may flow as the wellspring of spiritual rebirth!" — Rudolf Steiner



Rudolf Steiner, "Verse for America"

May we be centered in the feeling
of compassionate love in our hearts
as we seek to unite with human beings who share our goals
and with spirit beings who, full of grace,
look downward on our earnest, heartfelt striving,
strengthening us from realms of light
and illuminating our love.




Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Lord's Prayer: An Esoteric Study


Diagram

Rudolf Steiner, Berlin, January 28, 1907:


Today I should like to indicate the extent to which religious systems reveal, in specific instances, their hidden spiritual-scientific foundations.

It is a small but important aspect of the occult scientific basis of religions that I wish to discuss. Even the simplest people in contemporary society recognize this hidden background of religions as a spiritual fact involving the deepest truths. Seeking these truths brings to light how wisdom-filled and fraught with mystery are the ties binding together the spiritual life of mankind.

Think of Christian prayer. You all know what it is. It has often been spoken of, and anthroposophists have often reflected upon its relation to the spiritual-scientific world view. This spiritual-scientific world conception has brought to members of the anthroposophic movement another method of elevating the human being — the human soul — to contact with the divine, spiritual, cosmic forces. This method is meditation, by which a person experiences the spiritual content within himself, and receives something of what is given by the great guiding spirits of humanity or by the spiritual content of great civilizations in which the human being immerses himself and so identifies himself with the divine spiritual currents in the world.

Meditating in even the simplest way upon one of the formulas pronounced by the spiritual leaders of mankind, admitting to the mind a formula that embodies a great thought — not every thought is suitable, as you know, but only one handed down for this purpose by the guiding spirits of humanity — and letting such a formula really live in the heart and experience, brings a person to union with the higher spirituality. A higher power, in which he lives, streams through him, and patient perseverance to the point of letting this flow of power strengthen him enough morally and intellectually, brings him to the moment when the content of his meditation can awaken the deeper forces latent in the human soul. This kind of meditation may reach any of a number of stages, from the smallest gain in moral strength to the highest attainments of clairvoyance. But time, patience and energy are needed to bring most people to the higher degrees of clairvoyance by this means.

Meditation is usually thought of as an oriental approach to the divine. In the Occident, especially in Christian communities, prayer has taken its place. It is by prayer that the Christian customarily approaches the Divine, and through it he seeks entry to the higher worlds.

It should be noted by the way that what passes for prayer today would by no means have been considered such in early Christian times, least of all by the Founder of Christianity, Christ Jesus Himself. For if it were to happen that someone were really to gain the gratification of his personal wishes by prayer or entreaty, he would soon entirely disregard the all-embracing effect that the granting of the prayer should bring. He would assume that the Deity granted his wishes rather than those of others. One peasant might pray for sunshine for a particular crop; another for rain for another crop. What would Divine Providence then do?

Or suppose two opposing armies are facing each other, with each side praying for victory and supposing its cause alone to be just. Such an instance makes immediately obvious how little universality and sense of brotherhood attach to prayers arising out of personal wishes, and the granting of such prayers by God can satisfy only one group of supplicants. People so praying disregard the prayer in which Christ Jesus set forth the fundamental attitude of mind that should prevail in all prayer: “Father, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not my will, but thine, be done.” This is the Christian attitude of prayer.

Whatever the object of the prayer, this fundamental temper of mind must echo readily as an undertone in the soul of the petitioner for his prayer to be given in a Christian manner. When this is the character of his plea, the form of his prayer will be but a means of rising to higher spiritual realms to experience the Divinity within the soul. It will be such, moreover, as to expel every selfish wish and will-impulse. Its spirit will be that of the words, “Not my will, but thine, be done.” The result will be a rising to the divine world and absorption in it. 

Attainment of this soul mood in Christian prayer renders it similar to meditation, though more colored by feeling. Originally, Christian prayer was not essentially different from meditation. Meditation is more imbued with thought, however. Through it, the thoughts of the great leaders of mankind draw the meditant onward toward harmony with the divine currents streaming through the world. Through feeling, prayer accomplishes the same result.

The goal of both prayer and meditation is thus clearly the soul's union with the divine currents in the world. This union, on the highest plane, is the so-called unio mystica, or mystical union, with the Godhead.

Never could the human being attain to this union with God, never could he gain a relationship with higher spiritual beings, were he himself not an emanation of the divine-spiritual. Man's nature is twofold, as we know. In him are the four oft-mentioned human principles — physical body, etheric or life-body, astral body and ego. Then, within the ego, he has the possibility of unfolding for the future the three higher principles — manas, buddhi and atma, known in our western languages as spirit self, life spirit and spirit man.

To understand rightly this twofold human nature, let us consider the period of man's origin. From previous lectures, you will remember that man now represents the blending of these two natures — the blending of the three higher potentials (spirit self, life spirit and spirit man) with the four existing lower principles (physical body, etheric body, astral body and ego) developed in a far-distant past, which we term the Lemurian epoch of the earth. Tracing man backward from the present epoch through the Greco-Latin, Egypto-Chaldean, Persian and Indian periods of mankind to the great Atlantean flood recorded in the deluge-myths of all nations, we reach those ancestors of ours who lived on the land-mass we call Atlantis, between present-day Europe and America. Still further back, we come to a primeval land-mass, which we call Lemuria, lying between Australia and India. It was in the middle of that Lemurian period that the higher triad of spirit self, life spirit and spirit man united with the four lower human principles — physical body, etheric body, astral body and ego.

Correctly speaking, at that period in the Lemurian epoch, the highest being on earth was not yet a physical human being in our sense of the word. Only a kind of envelope existed, made up of the highest animal nature — a being, or collection of beings, made up of the four lower principles of human nature. But until then the higher human being, which is the internal part of human nature, destined to evolve further and further in the future through the three principles of spirit self, life spirit and spirit man, rested in the bosom of the Godhead.

To picture the scene at that time by a trivial modern comparison, it was as though all the people living on earth had been building bodies capable of receiving a human soul as a sponge absorbs water. Picture a vessel of water. It is impossible to tell where one drop of water ends and another begins. But picture also a number of little sponges immersed in the water, each soaking up a part of it. What had been a uniform mass of water is now distributed among the many little sponges. So it was with human souls in that remote age. Previously, they had been at rest, without individuality, in the bosom of the Divine First Cause, but at that particular moment they were absorbed by human bodies and so individualized, like the water by the sponges.

What was then absorbed by the separate bodies, or four lower principles, continued to evolve further, and will so continue into the future. In spiritual science it has always been called the higher triad, and the triangle and the square were made symbols, especially in the Pythagorean school, of the human being as he came into existence at the middle of the Lemurian epoch. The diagram on the next page thus represents the constituent elements of the human being,

But the higher, eternal portion, which passes through all incarnations, has a double character, as you can see, From one side it may be regarded as the primordial, eternal element of humanity and, from the other, as a drop of the Divine Essence given up by the Godhead and poured into the fourfold human vessel. As a result, a drop of the independently individualized Divinity is to be found in each of us human beings.

The three higher members of the human being — the eternal portion — may thus be looked upon as the three highest principles in man, but equally as three principles in the Godhead Itself. Actually, the three highest principles of human nature are at the same time the three lowest principles of the Divinity nearest to man. An enumeration of man's principles must start with the physical body, continue with the etheric body, astral body and ego, thence from spirit self to spirit man. But a corresponding enumeration of the principles of those Divine Beings who gave a drop of their own soul nature to man at the time of which we are speaking in the far-off past, must begin with spirit self, continue with life spirit and spirit man, and thence proceed to principles above spirit man, of which contemporary man can only conceive when he is a pupil of Initiates.

Diagram

You see that the three principles of higher human nature may be looked upon as three divine principles, and today we shall so regard them, not as human, but as divine principles, describing them accordingly. The highest principle in us, which we shall only develop at the end of our earth incarnations, or, we may say, at the end of our present planetary course, is called spirit man in terms of spiritual or occult science. The original essence of this human principle is faintly comparable to the will element in present-day human nature. This comparison is not exact, but only a faint indication. Yet the fundamental character of this highest of the divine principles in us is of the nature of will — a kind of willing. This will element in us, today only feebly developed in our inner being, will become in the course of our ever ascending development the predominating principle in us.

Man is today essentially a consciousness, or understanding being, whereas in many ways his will is limited. He understands the surrounding world as a totality — that is, to a certain degree — but has no real control over all that he penetrates with his knowledge. This control by his will is a development of the future, and it will become ever stronger until he attains that central goal of existence known to spiritual science as “the great sacrifice,” signifying the power of will to sacrifice oneself completely, not merely in driblets of human sacrifice of the kind of which man is capable today with his puny present feelings and will power. In future time he will have developed the strength to sacrifice his whole being by letting it flow directly into material substance.

One may picture this “great sacrifice,” the highest expression of will in divine nature, by imagining oneself before a mirror in which one's image is reflected. This image is, of course, an illusion, a semblance. Now carry over this image to the point of imagining yourself dying, sacrificing your existence, your feeling and thought, your very being, to inject life into that image. Spiritual science in all ages has called this phenomenon the “outpouring,” “the emanation.” If you could really make this sacrifice, it would be clear that you would no longer be here because you would have given up your whole being to this reflected image to imbue it with life and consciousness.

When the will has become capable of making the “great sacrifice,” it actually creates a universe, great or small, whose mission is bestowed upon it by its creator. Such is the creative will in the Divine Being.

The second principle in the Godhead, life spirit, insofar as it has flowed into humanity, has already been indicated in the comparison that has been made with the mirror. This second principle is the reflected image itself.

Now imagine the inner being of a Divinity that has in this way created a universe, with itself as the center. If, for example, you imagine yourself as the central point in this room, surrounded not by these six surfaces of walls, ceiling and floor, but by a hollow globe that reflects its content, you will see yourself, as the central point, reflected on all sides, everywhere. In like manner you can picture a Divinity as a central will, reflected on all sides, and the mirror is both image of Divinity and the universe. For what is a universe? Nothing but a mirror of the essential nature of Divinity.

The universe lives and moves because the Divinity is poured into it — the “outpouring” — when Divinity makes the “great sacrifice” and is reflected in the universe. The pouring of life and being into a reflected image is an exact picture of this divine creative process.

The divine will expresses itself in infinite diversity, animating thereby the entire universe. In spiritual science, this process of Divinity repeating itself in infinite differentiation, in multiplicity, is known as “the kingdom,” distinguished from the will itself. The will is the central point; its reflection, the kingdom. The will is in this sense comparable with spirit man; the kingdom, or will's reflected image, with life spirit.

The kingdom, in turn, reproduces the being of the Divine in infinite variety. Observe it fully, at least to the extent to which it is our kingdom, our multiplicity, or universe. Observe its visible manifestations in minerals, plants, animals and human beings. The kingdom is manifested in each separate being of all these, a fact that even our language expresses in the terms “mineral kingdom,” “vegetable kingdom,” “animal kingdom” and all the great divisions of our universe. The kingdom is all these; each of these in turn, is a kingdom, and if we observe the mass of details involved, we find the nature of all to be divine. In all of them the divine being is reflected, just as the central being is reflected in a hollow globe.

So an observer, looking at the world in the sense of spiritual research, sees God reflected in every human being as an expression and image of the Divine. In a graded series of beings, in infinite diversity, the Godhead appears in the kingdom, and the separate entities are distinguished from one another in the sense of spiritual science by their names. An observer at a stage of existence sufficiently lofty to look upon all these separate entities as “emanations,” or “outpourings,” of the Divine is able to give these entities their names, to give each manifestation of the Divine its name.

Of all beings in the universe, only man thinks the name of each of the separate members of the great multiplicity of the kingdom, distinguishing each from all the others. The will, as we have noted is comparable with spirit man; the kingdom, or reflected image into which the will has been “outpoured,” is comparable with life spirit. The third of the three highest human principles that emanate from the Divine, by which the separate members of the great multiplicity of the kingdom are distinguished from one another and separately named, is comparable with spirit self. The occult science of the different religions has thus simply taught what it was that emanated from the Godhead and flowed into a person to become his eternal image or archetype.

Thus, if you could see yourselves in that condition to which you should finally rise — the condition of spirit man — you would recognize its will-like nature.
If you would rise in thought to a comprehension of the vehicle of will (spirit man) — in other words, to life spirit — you would see that it is the kingdom that represents it in the divine sphere.

If you would rise to penetrate what the names, or conceptions or ideas of things really signify in spirit, you would see that it is the name that represents this wisdom in the divine sphere.

So does ancient teaching reveal that the emanation of Divinity, which has flowed into human nature to form its eternal part, consists of name, of kingdom, of will. Thus what is called the higher triad in man is recognizable as part of the Divine.

To complete this picture, think of the four lower principles of perishable human nature. The three higher principles may be thought of, we know, as principles of the Godhead. Similarly, the four lower principles may be considered as of the perishable world, as human principles.

Think of the physical body, composed as it is of the same substances and Forces as is the seemingly lifeless world around it. The physical body could not go on existing without the inflow into it of matter and force from the surrounding world. The physical body, in a strict sense, is a continual thoroughfare for all that is in it. Into it and out of it again the substances continuously flow that are at one time of the outer world and at another time within us. In the course of seven years, as we have mentioned in other connections, the entire material composition of the human body is renewed. In none of you are the substances that were in you ten years ago. We are perpetually renewing the substances of our physical body. What was formerly in us is now somewhere else, distributed outside us in nature; something else has replaced it inside of us. The body's life depends upon this continual inflow and outflow of matter.

Just as we have considered the three higher human principles as parts of Divinity, we may observe the four principles of our lower nature as parts of Divine Nature.

The physical body may be seen as part of the physical substance of our planet. Its substance is taken from the material planet, then is returned to it. The etheric body likewise may be considered a part of the environment surrounding us here, and so also the astral body.

Think of the etheric body and the astral body together. The astral body, as you know, is the vehicle of all that lives in man as impulse, desire and passion, all that surges up and down in the soul as joy and sorrow, pleasure and pain. The etheric body, on the contrary, is the vehicle that represents and bears within it the more lasting qualities of soul.

Often I have compared the development of the etheric body and astral body with the hour-hand and the minute-hand of a clock. A great difference is observable between what you knew and experienced as an eight-year-old child and what you now know and have experienced, as I have also reminded you on other occasions. You have learned so much, gained so many concepts, in the intervening period. Much that your soul has taken in of joy and sorrow has left it again, actually has passed through it. How different are these relatively ephemeral experiences from such human elements as temperament, character and tendencies that are persisting and continuing. You will find, for instance, that if you were passionately inclined as a child, you are probably still so in later years. Most people keep throughout their lives such basic elements in their natures. It is to overcome this relatively stationary quality of the etheric organism that spiritual training and development are instituted; for, as has often been emphasized, such training is no matter of mere theoretical knowledge. The student has accomplished a great deal, indeed, if he has changed one quality of temperament to which he is predisposed, so speeding up the hour-hand of the clock even a little.

Whatever evolves slowly in this way — a human being's lasting tendencies, enduring qualities of temperament, habits that persist — is rooted in the etheric body; whatever changes quickly by contrast, minute- hand-wise, has its roots in the astral body.

Applying these facts practically to the human being in his environment, to life in the external world, the observer notices a person's connections with the epoch in which he lives, with a nation, with a family, all of which are revealed in his habits, temperament and enduring inclinations. These relatively fixed and abiding qualities tend to be observable, not only in the person himself, but in all with whom he is in any way connected — his family, his nation, etc. A nation's separate individuals are recognizable through their common habits and temperament. An individual who is to achieve a higher spiritual development, to unfold his higher nature, must change his disposition and basic habits. Such a man is called “homeless” in the terminology of spiritual science, because he is obliged to change his etheric body, through which he has been, except for this higher development, connected with his nation.

Life in one's native community reveals, too, that the qualities linking one to a family or nation, stirring one to feel relationships with individual people of the nation, are similar also to qualities widely discernible in one's era. If an ancient Greek should walk into your life, you would have little in common with him. His etheric body would be so unlike yours. Human beings understand one another through common qualities in their etheric bodies.

In the astral body, however, is rooted a man's ability to lift himself more readily out of certain qualities binding him to a common life with others, and to establish himself as a separate individual in his family, in his folk, so that he is not a mere Frenchman nor a mere German nor a member of a family, but stands out as a special individuality within the folk, the family, etc. Thus he can outgrow the totality of characteristics of his nation. Those qualities that he transcends are rooted in the astral body. The astral body is their bearer. The astral body is thus seen to bear more of what is individual and personal in man.

So it is that faults committed through the etheric body render a man more a sinner toward his fellow men through neglect of those obligations and conditions making social life possible among them, between one man and the next. On the other hand, faults of a more individual nature, a man's wrong-doings as a separate personality, result from qualities in the astral body.

Spiritual science has always termed as “guilt” (German, “Schuld”) those sins that are against the community, and that originate in a faulty etheric body. The more common English word “debts” (“Schulden”) has in German an origin similar to the word “guilt,” with its more moral connotation in English, signifying what one man owes another in a moral sense. Debt, or guilt, derives from defective qualities in the etheric body, whereas a defective element in the astral body leads to what spiritual science associates with the word “temptation.” The man yielding to temptation takes upon himself a personal fault, or failure.

The ego, or true personality, too, can commit faults. The Paradise story indicates the kind of fault through which an ego may fall. The human being's higher soul became an ego when it descended from the bosom of the Godhead and entered an earthly body for the first time. It was taken up by the earthly body like a drop of water by a sponge.

The higher soul, or individuality, can commit faults within the ego. These ego-failures, which are different from those stemming from faulty qualities of the etheric and astral bodies, occur through the very fact of a man's attaining independence. To rise gradually, in full consciousness, to freedom and independence, man had to pass through selfishness and egotism. As a soul, he is descended from the Godhead, which is incapable of egotism. A member of an organism never imagines itself independent; if a finger were to imagine itself independent, it would fall away from the rest of the hand and wither.

The self-dependence that is so necessary to human development, and that will attain its full meaning when its fundamental nature is unselfishness, could originate only from selfishness.

It was when this selfishness entered the human body that man became a self-seeking, egotistic being. The ego naturally follows the body's inclinations. Man devours his fellow man, follows selfish impulses and desires, is completely entangled in his earthly receptacle as the drop of water in the sponge.

The Paradise story shows the individual placed in a position to sin just by having become an individual, a really independent being. Whereas formerly he drew in what he needed from the universe, as a single drop in a mass of water derives its force from the mass, his impulses as a fully independent individuality derive wholly from himself. The eating of the apple in Paradise signifies this kind of error stemming from independence. It is significant, too, that the Latin malum means both “evil” and “apple.” All real meanings of words, of course, provided they have any spiritual scientific background, are deeply connected in an inner sense. Spiritual science never uses the word “evil” for any transgression that does not stem from the ego.

Evil is thus the fault proceeding from the ego. Trespass, or guilt, is the fault proceeding from the etheric body of a man in social relationships with his fellow men. Temptation may assail the astral body in any respect in which it is individually and personally at fault.

The fault of the etheric body:
Debts, or Guilt.

The fault of the astral body:
Temptation.

The fault of the ego:
Evil.

Consider the relation of the four lower principles of human nature to their environment, that is, the planetary conditions surrounding them. The physical body continually takes in physical substance as nourishment; so it maintains its existence. The etheric body's life in a finite condition is possible only by maintenance of fellowship with people into whose community one has grown. The astral body is maintained by overcoming temptation. The ego is maintained, and undergoes development in the right way, by not succumbing when “evil” threatens.

Now bring before your mind's eye the whole human being — the lower quaternary and the higher triad — so that you can say: In individual man there lives a drop of Divinity; he is evolving to the Divine through the expression of his deepest, innermost nature. In once expressing outwardly that deepest, innermost nature, he reveals that he has by gradual development transmuted his own being into what Christianity calls the “Father.” What lies hidden in the human soul and hovers before humanity as its great goal is called the Father in Heaven.

One wishing to attain that degree of development must be capable of bringing his higher triad and lower quaternary to the point at which they can maintain the physical body adequately. The etheric body must live socially so that an adjustment is effected with whatever exists of “trespass” within it. The astral body must not perish in “temptation,” nor the body of the ego fall in “evil.” Man must strive upward to the Father in Heaven through the three higher principles — the Name, the Kingdom, the Will.

The Name must be felt in such a way that it becomes hallowed. Look around you. All things in their diversity express the Godhead. In calling each thing by its name, you make it a member of the divine order of the world. By beholding in every single thing or being that you name in your environment some element that reveals in it a principle of Divine Being, you help make each part of your environment sacred. You hallow each part. You grow into the Kingdom — which is the outpouring of Divinity — and develop yourself up to the Will, which is spirit man but at the same time a principle of the Godhead.

Think, now, of a meditant who concentrates wholly upon this meaning of human development, and who wishes to gather this meaning — the seven principles of man's spiritual evolution — into seven petitions in prayer. How will he pray?

To express the aim of the prayer, he will have to begin, before he utters the seven petitions:

Our Father which art in Heaven.

In this form of salutation, man concerns himself with the deepest foundation of the human soul, the inmost element of the human being, which Christian esoteric teaching characterizes as of the kingdom of spirit. The link of the first three petitions, which follow this exalted salutation, is with the three higher principles of human nature, with the divine substance within man:

Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done.

Now the prayer moves from the spiritual to the earthly kingdom:

Thy will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven.

The four last petitions are linked with the four lower principles of human nature.

What appeal is the supplicant to make with reference to the physical body that it be sustained within the planetary life?

Give us this day our daily bread.

What is he to say with reference to sustaining the etheric body?

Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

The adjustment of what takes place through the transgressions of the etheric body is what he asks for here.

What is he now to ask with regard to the astral body?

Lead us not into temptation.

And with regard to the ego?

Deliver us from evil.

The seven petitions of the Lord's Prayer are thus seen to express the fact that the human soul, when it aspires rightly, implores the Divine Will for a development of the seven elements in human nature that will enable a man to find his right course of life in the universe, a development of all these seven elements in the right way. Through the Lord's Prayer, the petitioner, at the time when he uses it, may rise to understand the full meaning of the development of his seven-principled human nature. It follows that even when the users of these seven petitions are the simplest people, who do not necessarily at all understand them, these petitions express for them, too, the spiritual-scientific view of human nature.

All formulas for meditation in the world's great religious societies throughout history have had their origins in spiritual science. Analyze every true prayer that exists — word for word — and you will find it to be no arbitrary stringing together of words. Never has a mere blind impulse been followed to string together so many beautiful words. Not at all; rather, the great wise men have adopted these prayer forms from the wisdom teaching that is now called spiritual science. Every true form of prayer was born of this great knowledge; and the great Initiate Who founded Christianity — Christ Jesus — had in mind the seven principles of human nature when he taught His prayer, expressing in it the seven-principled nature of man.

So are all prayers arranged. If it were not so, their power could not have continued to be exercised for thousands of years. Only this manner of arrangement is effective, even among simple people who do not in the least understand the deep meaning of the words.

A comparison of human life with occurrences in nature will make this appeal of true prayer to the simplest of people more understandable. Observe a plant. It delights you, though you may know nothing at all of the great universal laws according to which it has come into existence. It is there, and may have interest for you, but it would never have been created if primal, eternal laws had not existed according to which the necessary creative forces flowed into it. There is no need for simple natures to know these laws at all, but if a plant is to be created it must be produced in accordance with them. Similarly, no prayer that has not issued from the fountainhead of wisdom has real meaning for either the learned or the simple.

It is in this present age that those who have so long observed the plant and received its blessing can be led to the wisdom in these great universal laws. For two thousand years the Christian has been praying as the unscientific man observes a plant. The time is coming when he will discern the power that prayer possesses from the deep source of wisdom out of which it has flowed into being. Every prayer, especially the prayer that is central to Christian life, the Lord's Prayer, expresses this primeval wisdom.

As light is manifested in the world in seven colors, and the Fundamental sound in seven tones, so does the seven-membered human being, aspiring upward to its God, attain expression in the seven different feelings of aspiration that refer to the seven-principled human nature and are expressed in the seven petitions of the Lord's Prayer.

Thus, in the soul of the anthroposophist, this prayer expresses seven-principled man.