As blind as a mole

Man is under the influence of many forces and is, in relation to them, as blind as a mole. All the time, he is only aware of one part of reality, although all of reality concerns him. We must have strong impulses that enable us to get away from the reach of harmful demons.

Source (German):  Rudolf Steiner – GA 98 – Natur- und Geistwesen- ihr Wirken in unserer sichtbaren Welt – Hannover, February 24, 1908 (page 257)

Anonymous translator

Previously posted on May 7, 2016

Reincarnation: beginning and ending

It is a wrong conception when theosophists believe that reincarnation had no beginning and will have no ending. Reincarnation started in the Lemurian Age and will cease again at the beginning of the sixth Root Race or Age. It is only a certain period of time in earth evolution during which mankind reincarnates. It was preceded by a most spiritual condition which precluded any necessity for reincarnation and there will follow again a spiritual state which will likewise obviate the necessity for reincarnation.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 93 – The Temple Legend – Lecture 1 – Berlin, 23rd May 1904

Translated by John M. Wood

Previously posted on March 23, 2015

Humanity claims mostly that which he lacks

At present we live past one another, and due to the influence of modern education we have not acquired the ability to understand our fellow human beings, we lack the aptitude to know with a kind of clairvoyant empathy – as used to be present in many of the older cultures – what lives in the human soul. We demand a lot from life, but we live past one another.

We claim mostly that which we lack the most and the loud cry for socialism proclaims to ears that can listen in an unbiased way, that we have become unsocial people, that we do not understand each other, that we are unable to form a social society.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 79 – Die Wirklichkeit der höheren Welten – Kristiania (Oslo) December 2, 1921 (page 180-181)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

Previously posted on October 22, 2016

About insanity and disharmony in thinking, feeling and willing

There are three soul forces in human beings: thinking, feeling and willing. These three forces are bound up with the physical organization. Certain thoughts and feelings will call up certain acts of will. The human organism must function correctly if the three soul forces are to act in harmony. If the connection between them has broken down due to illness, then there is no longer consistency between thinking, feeling and willing. If an organ connected with the will is impaired, the human being will be unable to translate his thoughts into impulses of will; he is weak as far as action is concerned. Although a person is well able to think, he cannot decide on action. Another disturbance may be that someone is unable to link thoughts and feelings correctly; this human cannot bring his feelings into harmony with the thoughts behind them. Basically that is the cause of insanity.

In the normally constituted human being of today, thinking, feeling and willing are in harmony. This is right at certain stages of evolution. However, it must be born in mind that as far as a person is concerned, this harmony is established unconsciously. If a person is to be initiated, if he or she is to become capable of higher perception, then thinking, feeling and willing must be severed from one another. The organs connected with feeling and will must undergo division. Consequently, even if it cannot be proved anatomically, the organism of an initiate is different from that of a non-initiate. Because the contact between thinking, feeling and willing is severed, the initiate can see someone suffering without his feelings being roused; he can stand aside and coldly observe. The reason is that nothing must occur in the initiate unconsciously. An individual is compassionate out of his own free will, not because of some external compulsion. He becomes separated into human beings of feeling, a person of will and a thinking person; above these three is the ruler, the newfound individual, bringing them into harmony from a higher consciousness. Here too a death process, a destructive process must intervene; should this occur without a higher consciousness being attained, insanity would set in. Insanity is in fact a condition in which the three soul members have separated without being ruled by a higher consciousness.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 55 – Supersensible Knowledge – Lecture III – The Origin of Suffering – Berlin, 8th November 1906

Translated by Rita Stebbing

Previously posted on September 3, 2015

The time for prophets and founding religions is over

A truly religious person can grasp that religion is only enriched and deepened by scientific knowledge. Spiritual science doesn’t want to have anything to do with founding a new religion or to give rise to prophets or founders of sects. Mankind has matured; the time for prophets and founding religions is over. And in future people who feel the urge to be prophets will suffer a different fate from the prophets of old, who, in accordance with the ways of their times, were rightly revered as outstanding individuals. People of today who try to be prophets in the old sense will simply be laughed at.

Spiritual science doesn’t need any prophets because by its very nature it bases what it has to say upon the depths of the human soul, depths which our souls cannot always illuminate. And the spiritual scientist simply wants to investigate his subject as an unassuming researcher, drawing attention to vital matters. He says, “I’ve discovered it; you can discover it for yourself, too, if you try.” It won’t take long until the spiritual investigator is recognized as a researcher just like any chemist or biologist. The difference is that the spiritual researcher does his research in a field of concern to every human soul.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 155 – Anthroposophy and Christianity – Norrköping, July 13, 1914