If ever your soul is weak

If ever your soul is weak, if ever you believe that the goals of earth-existence are beyond your reach, think of man’s divine origin and become aware of those forces within you which are also the forces of supreme Love. Become inwardly conscious of the forces which give you confidence and certainty in all your works, through all your life, now and in all ages of time to come.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – The Festivals and Their Meaning: III: The Birth of the Sun-Spirit as the Spirit of the Earth: THE THIRTEEN HOLY NIGHTSHanover, 26th December, 1911

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Combating defects makes us strong and free

We should thank the Gods for our defects, for combating them makes us strong and free. But we shouldn’t love the defects for even a moment. We couldn’t thank Gods who made us pure and without defects, because they would have made us into weaklings. We should tell ourselves: And even the world was full of devils we still come from God.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 266 – From the Contents of Esoteric Classes – Lecture II Kassel, 11th December 1910

Previously posted on May 27, 2016

Strong and well-developed, or crippled and weak

When we have laid down our physical body and gone through the gate of death, then there is no longer anything to prevent our soul and spirit from assuming the physiognomy we have acquired from the ethical quality of our experience. There in the spiritual world we, as soul and spirit, are strong and well-developed, or crippled and weak. Then, later on, comes the time for us to resume a physical body; and in forming it we build, from within, our own destiny. For we may, on the one hand, be able, having brought from an earlier life a harmonious soul-and-spirit nature, to form the new body in perfect order and proportion, so that we can employ it in good and useful activity; or, coming into incarnation, as it were, as a moral cripple, we may find ourselves able only to form and guide the new body in a clumsy and awkward fashion, from embryo up to adult age.

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

Translated by Mary Adams

If we were always only to encounter what we wish for ourselves, such a life would make us out and out weaklings

The whole feeling and attitude of soul that must emerge from a true understanding of karma, is one which makes us realise when, perhaps some misfortune befalls us as consequence of an earlier weakness in the life of soul — that if this misfortune had not come about, the weakness would have persisted. Looking into the depths of our soul, we must realise: It is good and right that this misfortune has come upon me, because it has enabled a weakness to be eliminated. […] That man alone faces misfortune aright who says to himself: ‘If it has occurred because of an earlier weakness, it is to be welcomed, for it will make me conscious of the weakness (which expressed itself perhaps in some definite failing); I will now eradicate the weakness, I will be strong again.’ […] In a case, on the other hand, where a misfortune befalls one as the first step in karma, the right attitude is to say to oneself: If we were always only to encounter what we wish for ourselves, such a life would make us out and out weaklings! One or two earthly lives might continue to be comfortable and easy through the fact that only that would befall us that we desired for ourselves — but in the third or fourth life a kind of paralysis of soul and spirit would supervene, and no effort to overcome obstacles would arise in us. For, after all, obstacles would not be there for us to overcome unless the unhoped-for, the undesired came upon us.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 224 – The Forming of Destiny in Sleeping and Waking – Bern, April 6, 1923

Combating defects makes us strong and free

We should thank the Gods for our defects, for combating them makes us strong and free. But we shouldn’t love the defects for even a moment. We couldn’t thank Gods who made us pure and without defects, because they would have made us into weaklings. We should tell ourselves: And even the world was full of devils we still come from God.

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Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 266 – From the Contents of Esoteric Classes – Lecture II – Kassel, 11th December 1910