Sunday, June 15, 2014

Anthroposophia: The Holy Spirit in us

Rudolf Steiner:

Thus we now understand what the power of the Holy Spirit is: it is the power which will raise each man ever more and more above all that differentiates and separates him from others, and makes him a member of the whole of humanity on the earth, a power which works as a bond of soul between each and every soul, no matter in what bodies they may be.
It is of this same Holy Spirit that we are now told that at the Whitsun festival it streams, through another revelation, into the individualities of those who first accepted Christianity. In the Baptism by John there stands before us the picture of the Spirit as the dove; now, however, another picture appears, the picture of the fiery tongues. It is in a single dove, a single form, that the Holy Spirit manifests itself in John's Baptism: it is in many single tongues that it manifests itself at the Pentecostal festival. And each of the single tongues brings inspiration to an individual, to each of the individualities of the first disciples of Christianity.
What meaning, then, for our souls, has this Whitsun symbol? After Christ, the bearer of the universal-human Spirit, had completed His work on the earth, after He had suffered the last earthly sheaths of His being to disperse into the universe and His whole sheath-nature had departed as a single entity into the spiritual being of the Earth, then did it first become possible that in the hearts of those who first understood the Christ Impulse there should arise the power of speaking about the Christ Impulse, of working in the significance of the Christ Impulse. As regards its manifestation in its outer sheaths, the Christ Impulse had vanished at the Ascension into the undivided totality of the spiritual world: ten days later it came forth again out of the hearts of the single individualities of its first followers. And because the same Spirit which had worked in the power of the Christ Impulse now reappeared in multiple form, the first disciples of Christianity became the bearers and preachers of the Christ message.
Thus at the very beginning of Christian history was set up the powerful sign of this event, which says to us: “Just as the first disciples received each one the Christ Impulse into themselves, just as it was granted to them to receive it in the form of tongues of fire inspiring their own souls, so can you men, all of you, if you bestir yourselves to understand the Christ Impulse, receive its power, individualized, into your own hearts, the power which can develop in you ever more and more, which can become for you ever more and more complete.” — An all-embracing hope can well forth for us out of this sign, which was thus set at the starting-point of Christianity. The more a man perfects himself, the more can he feel that the Holy Spirit speaks out of his own inner being, in the measure that his thinking, feeling and willing are permeated by this Holy Spirit, which through its manifold division is also an individual Spirit in each single human individuality in which it works.
In regard to our future growth therefore, this Holy Spirit is for us men the Spirit of development into free manhood, into the free human soul. The Spirit of freedom holds sway in that Spirit which poured itself out over the first understanders of Christianity in the first Christian Pentecostal festival, the Spirit whose most significant characteristic was indicated by Christ Himself: “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free!” Man can become free only in the spirit. So long as he is dependent on that bodily nature in which his spirit dwells, so long does he remain its slave. He can become free only when he finds himself again in spirit, and from out of the spirit becomes lord over that which is in him. “To become free” presupposes the discovery of oneself as a spirit within oneself. The true spirit in which we can make this discovery is the universal human spirit, which we recognize as the Pentecostal power of the Holy Spirit entering into us, and which we must bring to birth in ourselves and allow to come to manifestation.

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