Thursday, March 18, 2021

The Sun: The Unlawful Prince Of This World; Christ Our Savior


Rudolf Steiner:

Although, as I have described in my Outline of Occult Science, the Sun separated itself from the Earth, or rather separated the Earth off from itself, it is nevertheless the original abode of Man. For ever since the beginning of the Saturn existence Man was united with the whole planetary system including the Sun. Man has not his home on Earth, he has on Earth only a temporary resting place. He is in truth, according to the view that prevailed in those olden times, a Sun-being. He is united in his whole being and existence with the Sun.

And since this is so, he ought as a being of the Sun to stand quite differently on the Earth than he actually does. He ought to stand on the Earth in such a way that it should suffice for the Earth to have the impulse to bring forth the seed of Man in etheric form from out of the mineral and plant kingdoms, and the Sun then to fructify the seed brought forth from the Earth. Thence should arise the etheric human form, which should itself establish its own relationship to the physical substances of the Earth, and itself take on Earth substantiality.

The contemporaries of Agrippa of Nettesheim — Agrippa's own knowledge was, unfortunately, somewhat clouded, but better contemporaries of his did really hold the view that Man ought not to be born in the earthly way he now is, but Man ought really to come to being in his etheric body through the interworking of Sun and Earth, and only afterwards, going about the Earth as an etheric being, give himself earthly form. The seeds of Man should grow up out of the Earth with the purity of plant-life, appearing here and there as ethereal fruits of the Earth, darkly shining; these should then in a certain season of the year be overshone, as it were, by the light of the Sun, and thereby assume human form, but etheric still; then Man should draw to himself physical substance — not from the body of the mother, but from the Earth and all that is thereon, incorporating it into himself from the kingdoms of the Earth. Thus — they thought — should have been the manner of Man's appearance on the Earth, in accordance with the purposes of the Spirit of the Worlds.

And the development that came later was due to the fact that Man had allowed to awaken within him too deep an urge, too intense a desire for the earthly and material. Thereby he forfeited his connection with the Sun and the Cosmos, and could only find his existence on Earth in the form of the stream of inheritance. Thereby, however, the Demon of the Earth began his work; for the Demon of the Earth would not have been able to do anything with men who were Sun-born. When Sun-born man came to dwell on the Earth, he would have been in very truth the Fourth Hierarchy. And one would have had to speak of Man in the following manner. One would have had to say: First Hierarchy: Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones; Second Hierarchy: Exusiai, Dynamis, Kyriotetes; Third Hierarchy: Angels, Archangels, Archai; Fourth Hierarchy: Man — three different shades or gradations of the human, but none the less making the Fourth Hierarchy.

But because Man gave rein to his strong impulses in the direction of the physical, he became not the being on the lowest branch, as it were, of the Hierarchies but instead the being at the summit of the highest branch of the earthly kingdoms: mineral kingdom, plant kingdom, animal kingdom, human kingdom. This was the picture of how Man stood in the world.

Moreover, because Man does not find his proper task on the Earth, the Earth herself has not her right and worthy position in the Cosmos. For since Man has fallen, the true Lord of the Earth is not there. What has happened? The true Lord of the Earth is not there, and it became necessary for the Earth, not being governed from herself in her place in the Cosmos, to be ruled from the Sun; so that the tasks that should really be carried out on Earth fell to the Sun. The man of mediaeval times looked up to the Sun and said: In the Sun are certain Intelligences. They determine the movement of the Earth in the Cosmos; they govern what happens on the Earth. Man ought, in reality, to do this; the Sun-forces ought to work on Earth through Man for the existence of the Earth. Hence that significant mediaeval conception that was expressed in the words: The Sun, the unlawful Prince of this world.

And now reflect, my dear friends, how infinitely the Christ Impulse was deepened through such conceptions. The Christ became, for these mediaeval men, the Spirit Who was not willing to find His further task on the Sun, Who would not remain among those who directed the Earth in unlawful manner from without. He wanted to take His path from the Sun to the Earth, to enter into the destiny of Man and the destiny of Earth, to experience Earth events and pass along the ways of Earth evolution, sharing the lot of Man and of Earth.

Therewith, for mediaeval man, the Christ is the one Being Who in the Cosmos saved the task of Man on the Earth. Now you have the connection. Now you can see why, in Rosicrucian times, it was again and again impressed upon the pupil: “O Man, thou art not what thou art; the Christ had to come, to take from thee thy task, in order that He might perform it for thee.”


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