Saturday, October 23, 2010

"I exist in the world for a definite purpose, which I alone can fulfill."

Rudolf Steiner, February 22, 1916:

...the most important thing after death is that the moment of death is viewed from the other side. This kindles our ego-consciousness on the other side. Here, in the physical world, we have, as it were, one side of ego-consciousness; after death, we have the other side of ego-consciousness. I explained just now where we should look for the supersensible part of our physical body after death. We should seek this physical body in the shape of a relation of forces, of an organism of forces, as a cosmos of forces, within the whole world. This physical essence prepares the place through which we must pass between death and a new birth.

Within our physical body, which is so small in comparison to the whole world, our skin really encloses a microcosm, something that is, in reality, a whole world. Trivially speaking, I might say that this world is merely rolled together and that afterwards it unrolls again and fills out the universe, with the exception of one tiny space, that always remains empty.

Between death and a new birth, we really exist everywhere in the world; we live in it with that part which, here on earth, lies at the foundation of our physical body in the form of supersensible forces. We are everywhere, except in that one place. This remains empty. It is the space enclosed by our skin, the space which we take up in the physical world. This remains empty.

Yet we constantly look upon this empty space. That is to say, we look upon our own self, from outside; we look into a concavity. This remains empty. It remains empty to such an extent that a fundamental feeling rises up in connection with it. Namely, we do not contemplate things in an abstract manner, we do not simply stare at them, but our contemplation is connected with a powerful inner life-experience, with a mighty experience. It is connected with the fact that when we contemplate this emptiness, a feeling rises up in us, a feeling that accompanies us throughout our life between death and a new birth and constitutes a great deal of what we generally designate as our life beyond. It is the feeling, that there is something in the world which must again and again be filled out by us. And then we acquire the feeling: “I exist in the world for a definite purpose, which I alone can fulfill.” Thus we learn to know our place within the world. We feel that we are building-stones, without which the world could not exist. This is what arises through the contemplation of that empty space. When we gaze at it, we are overcome by a feeling telling us that we stand within the world as something that forms part of it.

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