What self-seeking has brought this discontent upon me?

All obstinacy, all self-seeking, have a destructive effect upon thinking. All characteristics connected with obstinacy and selfishness — such as ambition, vanity all these things that seem to tend in a very different direction make our thinking unsound, and act unfavourably upon our mood of soul. We must seek, therefore, to overcome obstinacy, self-seeking, egoism; and cultivate, on the contrary, a certain absorption in things and a certain self-sacrificing attitude toward other beings.

Absorption, a self-sacrificing attitude, in regard to the most insignificant objects and occurrences have a favourable effect upon thinking and upon one’s mood. In truth, self-seeking and egoism bring their own punishment because the self-seeking person becomes more and more discontented, complains more and more that he comes off badly. When anyone feels this way about himself, he ought to place himself under the law of karma and ask himself, when he is discontented: ‘What self-seeking has brought this discontent upon me?’

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 130 – Esoteric Christianity and the Mission of Christian Rosenkreutz – Lecture 2 – Leipzig, 5th November 1911

Translated by Pauline Wehrle

Previously posted on March 5, 2015