Vivisection

In the Middle Ages no one would have ever dreamt of destroying life in order to understand it, and in ancient times any doctor would have looked on this as the height of madness. In the Middle Ages a number of people were still clairvoyant; doctors could see into a man and could discern any injury or defect in his physical body. So it was with Paracelsus, for example. 

But the material culture of modern times had to come, and with it a loss of clairvoyance. We see this particularly in our scientists and doctors; and vivisection is a result of it. In this way we can come to understand it, but we should never excuse or justify it. 

The consequences of a life which has been the cause of pain to others are bound to follow, and after death the vivisectionist has to endure exactly the same pains that he inflicted on animals. His soul is drawn into every pain he caused. It is no use saying that to inflict pain was not his intention, or that he did it for the sake of science or that his purpose was good. The law of spiritual life is inflexible.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 95 – At the Gates of Spiritual Science: LECTURE THREE: LIFE OF THE SOUL IN KAMALOKA – Stuttgart, 24th August, 1906

Translated by E.H. Goddard & Charles Davy

Previously posted on februari 25, 2019

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About Kamaloca

The fact that we live through every detail of our past life in reverse order, brings with it that we can only now have a true knowledge of our own actions, for we experience their effects on ourselves. In the case of every action we now experience the soul-condition of the person against whom the action turned. We experience the pains and joys which we caused to other people, we experience them from within. In Kamaloca there is nothing which we did to others which does not become our own experience. Here we must apply this sentence: you will reap what you sowed.

Take one example which applies to this retrogressive experience: vivisection. This is closely connected with the materialistic direction of modern science. The position of the Middle Ages would have thought it stupid to study life by cutting of a living body and destroy in life. At that time many people, and physicians in particular, were still clairvoyant and they could therefore see through the physical body. But this power of vision was lost and because we can no longer look into the inner depths of the human organism, people began to cut it up and to dissect it. But vivisectors cut into living life. After death Karma, the law of cause and effect, becomes active. The intention that leads to vivisection comes less into consideration. The vivisector must experience in himself the results of his deeds. In kamaloka he must now endure and live through every pain which he inflicted an animal. Later on the scientific intention which prompted him to vivisect will be interwoven with his Karma.

Source Rudolf Steiner – GA 94 – Popular Occultism: Lecture 5: LIFE BETWEEN DEATH AND A NEW BIRTH – Leipzig, 3 July, 1906

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Vivisection only exists because clairvoyance has been lost

On account of its materialism, modern science has need of vivisection. The anti-vivisection movements are inspired by deeply moral motives. But it will not be possible to abolish vivisection in science until clairvoyance has been restored to medicine. It is only because clairvoyance has been lost that medicine has had to resort to vivisection. When man has regained conscious access to the astral world, clairvoyance will enable doctors to enter spiritually into the inner conditions of diseased organs and vivisection will be abandoned as worthless.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 94 – An Esoteric Cosmology – Lecture IX: The Astral World – Paris, 2nd June 1906

Translated by Rene Querido

Previously posted on February 4, 2017

Vivisection

In the Middle Ages no one would have ever dreamt of destroying life in order to understand it, and in ancient times any doctor would have looked on this as the height of madness. In the Middle Ages a number of people were still clairvoyant; doctors could see into a man and could discern any injury or defect in his physical body. So it was with Paracelsus, for example.

But the material culture of modern times had to come, and with it a loss of clairvoyance. We see this particularly in our scientists and doctors; and vivisection is a result of it. In this way we can come to understand it, but we should never excuse or justify it.

The consequences of a life which has been the cause of pain to others are bound to follow, and after death the vivisectionist has to endure exactly the same pains that he inflicted on animals. His soul is drawn into every pain he caused. It is no use saying that to inflict pain was not his intention, or that he did it for the sake of science or that his purpose was good. The law of spiritual life is inflexible.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 95 – At the Gates of Spiritual Science: LECTURE THREE: LIFE OF THE SOUL IN KAMALOKA – Stuttgart, 24th August, 1906

Translated by E.H. Goddard & Charles Davy

Only who knows nothing about the real life can do vivisection

Vivisection originated from the materialistic way of thinking which is destitute of any intuition which cannot look in the works of life. This way of thinking must look at the body as a mechanical interaction of the single parts. Then it is quite natural that one takes the animal experiment where one believes that the same interaction takes place as with the human being to recognise and combat certain illness processes. Only who knows nothing about the real life can do vivisection.

A time comes when the human beings figure out the single life of a creature in connection with the life of the whole universe. The human beings get reverence for life. Then they learn to realise: any life that is taken away from a living being, any harm that is caused to a living being lessens the noblest forces of our own human nature because of a connection which exists between life and life.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 53 – Origin and Goal of the Human Being – Lecture XXII – Berlin, 25th May 1905

Previously posted on August 12, 2015