Truths contain life-force

Mankind is always in need of truths which cannot, in every age, be wholly understood. The assimilation of truths is not significant only for our knowledge; truths themselves contain life-force. By permeating ourselves with truth we permeate our soul-nature with an element drawn from the objective world, just as we must permeate our physical being with air taken from outside in order to live. Deep truths are indeed expressed in great religious revelations, but in such a form that their real inner meaning is often not understood until much, much later.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 155 – Christ and the Human Soul: Lecture 4 – Norrkoping, 16th July 1914

Translated by Charles Davy

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How am I to know that what is presented by anyone as the science of initiation is correct, when I cannot myself see into the spiritual world?

It is true, not everyone today can cross the threshold to the spiritual world; but no one would be prevented from perceiving the truth of what is said by those who have crossed that threshold. It is false reasoning when it is said again and again by one or another: How am I to know that what is presented by anyone as the science of initiation is correct, when I cannot myself see into the spiritual world? That is false reasoning. Common sense which is not led astray by the erroneous ideas of our time in the natural or the social sphere can decide of itself whether the element of truth rules in what anyone says. If someone speaks of spiritual worlds, you must take account of everything: the manner of speaking, the seriousness with which things are treated, the logic which is developed, and so on, and then it will be possible to judge whether what is presented as information about the spiritual world is charlatanism, or whether it has foundation. Anyone can decide this.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 194 – The Mysteries of Light, of Space, and of the Earth – Lecture III: Historical Occurrences of the Last Century – Dornach, 14th December 1919

Translated by Frances E. Dawson

Previously posted on Februari 23, 2015

About truths and opinions (1 of 5)

Humanity has now descended to the point where not only manners and customs are individual but even opinions and faiths as well. There are people among us already who look on it as a lofty ideal for everyone to have his own religion. The idea floats before quite a number that a time must come when there are as many religions and truths as persons.

To be continued

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 102 – The Influence of Spiritual Beings on Man: Lecture IX – Berlin, 1st June 1908

Duality

Everywhere in life we find duality: light and shade, positive and negative, male and female, left and right, right and wrong, good and evil. Duality is deeply rooted in the nature of all existence, and he who wants to understand nature, must be aware of this duality and always have it clearly in mind. Only when we perceive this duality in our own life, can we come to understand the world. The pupil must make it his duty to think in terms of these dualities. He should never have one aspect only in mind but he should always be aware of both sides when thinking. […] Only when one imposes on oneself the inner duty never to think in terms of a single aspect only, but to think always in terms of duality, can one come to know the full truth. When humanity learns to think in dualities, thinking will be factually correct and in accordance with reality.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 89 – Bewußtsein – Leben – Form – Berlin, April 3, 1905 (page 291)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

Previously posted on May 8, 2015

Thinking in accordance with reality

Unless we acquire the faculty for the perception of truth in this physical world we shall never be able to unfold it in regard to the spiritual world. The capacity to find our true bearings in the spiritual world must be developed here in the physical world.
It is for this purpose that we are placed in the physical world, where it behoves us to seek agreement between idea and objective reality, in such a way that this may become natural to us, may become a habit and a faculty which we then carry with us into the spiritual world.
But in these days there are so many who make statements with utter disregard of their conformity with objective fact, simply out of their feelings and emotions! This tendency is the very reverse of what is needed for the onward progress of humanity.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 170 – Memory and Habit: III – Dornach, 28th August 1916