Friday, May 30, 2014

Earthly Freedom: The Pearl of Great Price

Rudolf Steiner:  "If we look back into pre-Christian times, and especially into those times which possess to a striking degree the characteristic qualities of pre-Christian life, we can feel how different was the whole outlook of men in those days. Not that a complete change took place in a single moment; nevertheless the Event of Golgotha did bring about an absolute separation of one phase in the evolution of mankind from another. The Event of Golgotha came at the end of a period of evolution during which men beheld, together with the world of the senses, also the spiritual. Incredible as it may appear to modern man it is a fact that in pre-Christian times men saw, together with the sense-perceptible, a spiritual reality. They did not see merely trees or merely plants, but together with the trees and together with the plants they saw something spiritual. But as the time of the Event of Golgotha drew near, the civilization that bore within it this power of vision was coming to an end. Something completely new was now to enter into the evolution of mankind. As long as man beholds the spiritual in the physical things all around him, he cannot have a consciousness which allows the impulse of freedom to quicken within it. The birth of the impulse of freedom is necessarily accompanied by a loss of this vision; man has to find himself deserted by the divine and spiritual when he looks out upon the external world. The impulse of freedom inevitably implies that, if man would again have vision of the spiritual, he must exert himself inwardly and draw it forth from the depths of his own soul."

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