Brain / Universe / Birth

The active forces of the starry world push us into physical incarnation. Clairvoyant perception allows us to see in a person’s organization that he or she is indeed the result of the working together of such cosmic forces. I want to illustrate this in a hypothetical form that nevertheless corresponds fully to clairvoyant perceptions.

If we examined the structure of a person’s brain clairvoyantly and could see that certain functions are located in certain places and give rise to certain processes, we would find that each person’s brain is different. No two people have the same brain. If we could take a picture of the entire brain with all of its details visible, we would get a different picture for each person. If we photographed a person’s brain at the moment of birth and took a picture of the sky directly above his or her birthplace, the two pictures would be alike. The stars in the photograph of the sky would be arranged in the same way as certain parts of the brain in the other picture. Thus, our brain is really a picture of the heavens, and we each have a different picture depending on where and when we were born. This indicates that we are born out of the entire universe.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 15 – The Spiritual Guidance of the Individual and Humanity: Lecture Three – Copenhagen, June 8, 1911

Previously posted on May 6, 2019 



Picture / True being

Truth is, we never bring our real and inmost Ego with us from the spiritual world into the physical and earthly; we leave it in the spiritual world. Before we came down into earthly life it was in the spiritual world, and it is there again between our falling asleep and our awakening. It stays there always, and if by day — in the present form of human consciousness — we call ourselves an ‘I,’ this word is but an indication of something which is not here in the physical world at all; it only has its picture in this world.

We do not see ourselves aright if we say: ‘Here am I, this robust and real man, standing upon Earth; here am I with my inmost being.’ We only see ourselves aright if we say: ‘Our true being is in the spiritual world, and what is here of us on Earth is but a picture — an image of our true being.’ It is entirely true if we regard what is here on Earth, not as the real man himself, but as the picture of the real man.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 228 – MAN AS A PICTURE of the LIVING SPIRIT – London, 2nd September 1923

Translated by George Adams

Previously posted on April  26, 2019

The best remedy against a tormenting astral being

Lucifer and Ahriman are at their most harmful when they are not seen, when they remain invisible. Let us suppose that somebody is tormented by ahrimanic forces; what would be the best remedy? The best remedy would be for him to have some kind of picture made of Ahriman which he could place in his room. The best remedy against an astral being which torments one, is to place it before oneself in a physical form. It is incorrect to suppose that if we have Ahriman before us we will be persecuted by him; the contrary is true. Things must be made visible. But we must not let the matter get on our nerves; we must not develop a condition in which, if we happen to pass by the picture of Ahriman and look at it unconsciously, we then carry the image within ourselves. For this image will then be invisible inside us, thus making us nervous or excited.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 275 – Art as Seen in the Light of Mystery Wisdom: Lecture Three: IMPULSES OF TRANSFORMATION FOR MAN’S ARTISTIC EVOLUTION II – Dornach, 30th December 1914

Translated by Pauline Wehrle

Previously posted on September 13, 2017

Picture/Spiritual knowledge

To paint a picture, one must be an artist; but to experience the beauty and inner content of the picture one need not be an artist, one has only to approach the picture with a sincere and open mind. It is the same with spiritual knowledge. In order to “paint” in ideas, one must be a researcher in the spirit; but once the picture is painted, it stands there for others to behold. And if these, who are not themselves “artists”, are free from prejudice and are sincere seekers after truth, they will receive health and healing from the descriptions of the spiritual world.


Rudolf  Steiner in 1892 painted by Otto Fröhlich

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 231 – SPIRITUAL KNOWLEDGE: A WAY OF LIFE – The Hague, November 16, 1923

Translated by Mary Adams

Previously posted  on May 11, 2017

One does not need to be a painter to feel the beauty of a picture

It needs to be said over and over again: just as one does not need to be a painter to feel the beauty of a picture, so too one does not need to be a spiritual scientist oneself — although one can become one up to a point — to be able to test whether what I am saying here is true. Just as one can feel the beauty of a picture without being a painter oneself, so with ordinary common sense one can perceive what the spiritual scientist says about the soul.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 83 – The Tension Between East and West: II: Psychology – Vienna, June 2, 1922

Translated by B. A. Rowley

Previously posted on March 26, 2017