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Macrocosm and Microcosm, GA# 119
Eleven Lectures in Vienna, March 1910
Published by Anthroposophical Press, NY in 1985
Book Review by Bobby Matherne ©2003
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The theme of the first lecture is that there is a veil between human beings and the real spiritual world, and the two methods of rending that veil have historically been through ecstasy and mystical experience. The world we see can be compared to a painted horizon or stage backdrop that covers the reality behind the facade. We are each in our own Truman Show [1999 Jim Carey Movie] - unable to see the real world that lies beyond the painted horizon. Every moment that we accept the material world as "all there is," we further reinforce that backdrop until we can no longer remember that we're in a staged play - one in which real work goes on behind the scenes. The script preparation, the director's instructions during rehearsals, the casting director's choices for players, and the person providing the cues during the performance. All these are invisible to the audience during a play, but without these there would be no play at all. So it is with our lives. The script preparation takes place between incarnations, as does the rehearsals, and casting choices. During the play of life, the cues are provided by our Guardian Angels whose job it is to remember what we have done in all our lifetimes, so as best to remind us what to do at critical choice points in this lifetime. Since we each did certain things in previous lifetimes that have led to the working-out of those things during this lifetime, we may consider ourselves as slaves to our past, but at the same time we may remind ourselves that we are masters of our future. [See page 75, Theosophy of the Rosicrucian by Rudolf Steiner.]
[page 12] The external world of the senses is spread out before us like a tapestry and we have the feeling that behind this tapestry there is something into which our faculty of perception cannot penetrate.
Our perception of this curtain shielding us from the real world begins as a vague feeling at first and grows stronger over time. This process is well portrayed by Truman in the Truman Show, in which, unbeknownst to him, he grew up and is living as an adult on a television sound stage, and every moment of his life is being broadcast all over the world. [Note the similarity to the Akashic Records in which all of our daily deeds are recorded for all who have an Akashic Television to see.]
In the ecstasy path, one's Ego is snuffed out and one cannot distinguish from mirage or reality - rather it seems as if one "were flowing right through the sense-perceptions and living in a world of pictures which presents something entirely new." (Page 15)
To understand the mystic path, we need a little background information about what it means to be a mystic. Normally when someone does something that causes us pain, we feel resentment. Our Ego rebels against the blow, but the mystic experiences what actually caused the blow.
[page 16, 17] Such a man feels: You would never have had to suffer this blow if at some time you had not brought it upon yourself. Otherwise this man would not have crossed your path. You cannot therefore justifiably turn your resentment against one who was brought into contact with you through happenings in the world in order to give you the blow you have deserved.
The path of the mystic is strewn with guilt and one is unable to maintain a right relationship with the outside world.
[page 19] Thus in both directions, in ordinary ecstasy and in ordinary mystical experience, the power of orientation in the world is lost. It is therefore a good thing that man encounters barriers in two directions.
The path of the mystic is into the Microcosm and the path of the ecstatic is into the Macrocosm. In the mystic path, when one expands into the Macrocosm, one gives up one's Ego, but maintains one's astral body. This continuing attachment to the astral body during ecstasy is what distinguishes ecstasy from sleep. During sleep the Ego and astral body are surrendered and one is unconscious. During ecstasy one remains conscious. Being unconscious is therefore synonymous with having one's astral body outside of one's physical body. Rest assured that sleep is our auto-pilot to rest. Rest assured that if we should try to pilot manually we would not rest, assuredly.
[page 23] If a man were to play a part in this difficult operation of restoring the forces exhausted during the previous day, he would ruin everything because he is not yet capable of being a conscious participant. It is providential that consciousness of his own existence is snatched away from man at the moment when he might do harm to his own development.
The etheric body is the highest developed body of the plant kingdom. Plants have roots and stems with leaves that turn into sepals and stamens near the top of the plant. In the human brain, there is a structure called the limbic system, which has two seed like nodules that are called "amygdalas" because they resemble almonds. A drawing in The Brain, a Torstar book published in 1984, shows that the limbic system sits on the top end of the spinal cord [analogous to a plant stem] with the amygdaloid structures looking very much like stamens growing from the end of sepals. In addition, growing out of the end of each amygdala is one of the two olfactory bulbs. We know from previous Steiner lectures that the skull is the terminal vertebra that expanded to make room for, first, the root brain, second, the limbic system, then the advanced, more recent cortex and neo-cortex portions of the brain.
[page 25] What enables us to experience an outer picture of the sense-world is the physical body, and what enables us in waking life to have an inner life of soul, is the etheric body.
The tantalizing aspect of the isomorphism of the plant kingdom and our root brain is that the brain structure, the limbic system, that sits on top of a long stem, the spinal cord, has been discovered in recent years to be the source of our inner life of feelings and emotions. [See ARJ: The Emotional Brain by Joseph LeDoux.] In other words, the structure of our brain that most resembles a plant, and a plant's highest body is its etheric body, holds our inner life of feelings. That is the thrust of what Steiner claimed in his lecture some ninety years ago. [See page 25 quote above.] With the additional insights provided by the nascent science of doyletics, we can begin to get a glimmer of the physical structure , the limbic system, that parallels the spiritual structure, the etheric body, and how those two structures enable us to have an inner life of feelings.
[page 25] If, on waking, we were to penetrate into the physical body only, we should confront outer pictures, but we should remain inwardly empty, cold and apathetic, having no interest in anything around us or presented in the pictures.
Amazingly this is a description of what many autistic children experience, or rather, cannot experience, the inner world of feelings. [See ARJ: Thinking in Pictures and Emergence: Labeled Autistic, two books by the famous autistic Animal Husbandry expert, Temple Grandin.]
As Ray Bagley used to say after a long meeting in which all kinds of inter-related subjects were discussed, "What does all this mean?" To me it means that we are beginning to get the first hints of the subtle blending of the material and spiritual world that occurs in the human being at every level, but our current understanding is only now beginning to understand the root brain level of this blending. This subject raises many unanswered questions that can provide a fertile seed bed for future investigation into the physical and spiritual aspects of the human brain and our inner life of feelings.
What we can see is that the human being consists of two dynamic duo's. The first duo is the physical body and etheric body that, in tandem, are responsible for creating and maintaining a living human being. The second duo is the Ego and astral bodies that expand out into the Macrocosm at night while we are asleep and return to the Microcosm of the human body upon waking. We can understand the path of ecstasy as one in which the duo of the Ego and astral bodies are divorced from one another and the Ego leaves the astral body behind, together with the possibility of consciousness.
In addition we can now examine the mystical path, and see it as a state in which one on the mystic path manages to penetrate one's own etheric body. Normally one not on the mystic path receives only a mirroring from one's etheric body, i.e., one experiences the mirrored image as one's actual soul-life - an experience as unreal as trying to feel one's body in the mirror. On the contrary, one on the mystic path, like Alice, travels through the looking glass by penetrating one's etheric body and experiences intensely strong feelings in doing so, similar to a consuming fire.
To summarize: in expanding into the Macrocosm, the ecstatic's Ego becomes evanescent or rarified, whereas in shrinking into the Microcosm, the mystic's Ego becomes concentrated or densified. (Paraphrased from page 26.) Steiner in this lecture provides a roadmap to the two paths of the ecstatic and the mystic.
To the materialistic scientist this may sound like fancified poppycock, and one might naturally expect Steiner to think poorly of such scientists, but that is not the case with Steiner. He always shows the utmost respect for the materialistic scientist.
[page 29] The whole process is completely foreign to modern physical science -- which need not, however, be severely criticized on that account; in a certain respect it is justified in asserting a one-sided point of view.
Everyone knows from personal experience that there are these three states of sleep: 1) dreamless sleep, 2) dream-filled sleep, and 3) somnambulistic sleep in which one may move, talk, or sleepwalk without consciousness of it thereafter. These three states correspond to the Sentient Soul, Intellectual Soul, and Consciousness Soul of the human being.
[page 32] The part of the soul that is subject to the first influence which drives the soul out of the bodily sheaths, is known in Spiritual Science as the Sentient Soul; the part affected by the second influence which drives the picture of dream into man's life of soul during sleep is known as the Intellectual Soul; the third part . . . is the Consciousness Soul.
At the end of a long day, it is our Sentient Soul that has become exhausted. During the night forces are exerted on the Intellectual Soul and Consciousness Soul to strengthen us. Then the same forces that pushed the duo of Ego and astral bodies out of our bodies now begin to work in the opposite direction to freshen the Sentient Soul. The result is that we awaken, experience the sentient world around us, and feel refreshed in our inner being.
The book has a diagram on page 89 which shows the six steps into a sleep state. The first state is withdrawal from the Consciousness Soul as we lay in bed, then the Intellectual Soul, then the Sentient Soul. As we near the transition point to sleep, we are in a state very similar to that of deep auto-hypnosis in which we feel catatonic, unable to move the slightest muscle, and we are on the verge of dropping off into sleep. When we pass that transition point into sleep, we are drawn by, first, the forces of the Sentient Soul, then, in turn, the Intellectual Soul, then the Consciousness Soul. Each of these seven phases, counting the Transition Point as a phase, maps directly onto the Geocentric View of the Solar System. [See ARJ: Life Between Death and Rebirth for a description and diagram of the Geocentric View, including an explanation for apparent reversal of Venus and Mercury between the Heliocentric and Geocentric views.]
Beginning at Earth, the Geocentric point, human beings are completely awake. At the first position, Moon, they release their Consciousness Soul, at the second position, Mercury, their Intellectual Soul, at the third position, Venus, their Sentient Soul. At the Transition Point, the fourth position, Sun, they move into sleep, and immediately enter the fifth position, Mars, which works on their Sentient Soul, then the sixth position, Jupiter, on their Intellectual Soul, and finally at the seventh position, Saturn works on their Consciousness Soul. Upon completion of sleep the reverse process is followed during the return trip to full awakening. Thus one can examine one's own experience of the process of awakening and find that, truly, after passing the Transition Point into awakening, one first experiences bodily sensations, light, and sounds through one's Sentient Soul (position 3 or Venus). At the next phase, position 2, Mercury, one can ponder the feelings within and generate thoughts about the external world with one's Intellectual Soul. In the final phase of awakening, position 1, Moon, one can convert the results of one's thoughts into deeds with the exercise of one's Consciousness Soul.
Let's examine how these phases go in a typical example. I slowly awaken and feel the cool softness of the sheets in the bed, enjoy luxuriating in thoughts of some wonderful dream, and suddenly note that the bright daylight streaming in the window means that I'll be late for work, so I immediately pop out of bed and jump into the shower. These three phases of awakening happen to each of us every morning and it's as hard for us to understand them as it is for a fish to understand what water is. We know about water because we can see that a fish lives and swims in it, but to the fish water is its world - without water it dies, so it cannot understand water as something independent of its existence. Similarly we have had trouble understanding how to punctuate our seemingly unified wakening experience into three phases, up until now.
We are now in a position to understand the following passage:
[page 44] The force which in the Macrocosm drives Mars around the Sun is similar to the one that sends us to sleep . . . the one which drives Venus around the Sun is similar to the one which regulates the Sentient Soul by day.
And so on: Saturn affects the Consciousness Soul of sleepwalkers, the Moon regulates our conscious deeds in waking life, and Jupiter affects our dreaming life. Steiner admits he has only given "a faint indication of the correspondances of the Microcosm (man) and the Macrocosm (the solar system)," but he hastens to point out that it should be evident "that such correspondances do indeed exist." (Page 45.)
My friend, a noted skeptic, told me that he has never had any experience of these four separate bodies which Steiner says compose the human being. And I would have to agree with him that I have never experienced them separately either. I have experienced hydrogen and oxygen separately, but would not have recognized these two volatile, fiery gases as the components of water but for my high school chemistry course. Through chemistry we have come to accept as fact that water is a combined form of hydrogen and oxygen. Before we had that chemical knowledge, it would have seemed the height of folly to believe that water, that ubiquitous liquid, was a combined form of two vaporous gases. My skeptical friend is like the pre-chemistry scientist who when asked to believe something in contradiction of his senses, namely, that water can be composed of two gases, would naturally have refused to believe such foolishness.
[page 46] What we experience in the waking state denotes no actual perception or knowledge of the two members of our being into which we descend on waking. We come down into our etheric and physical bodies but have no experience of them from within. . . . We view our physical body from outside with the same eyes with which we look at the rest of the world. . . . We really learn to know ourselves as men only from outside, regarding ourselves as beings of the sense-world.
It is as if my skeptical friend were asked to view water from within as if it were composed of two gases, when his senses tell him that water is a liquid. Before chemistry, everyone would have scoffed at such an idea. Before Steiner's Spiritual Science, I would have scoffed at the idea that the human body is composed of four separate bodies, since I had no perception of their separate existence. Spiritual Science brings us to view our bodies from within in the same way that chemistry has brought us to view water from within. And the study of the human body from within is certainly a more difficult task than the study of chemistry that occupied me during my first two years of college.
If an average man were to decide on the spur of the moment to run a entire marathon, and with the greatest force of will endured as long as possible, chances are that he would fall down unconscious in complete exhaustion before he finished the twenty-five mile course. But if that same man were to begin running short courses and gradually build up to longer courses, soon he would be fit to both run in and complete an entire marathon. No amount of will power will enable one to complete a course that one is not fit for. Steiner makes a similar point about mystics.
[page 48] Mystical development does not really consist in penetrating by force into the inner world of the physical and etheric bodies, but in first making oneself fit for the experience and passing through it consciously.
Without the fitness, mystics would be consumed in a fire of shame were they to penetrate the etheric body. We do not see objects directly but only the sunlight reflected from them, yet if we were to try to view the source of the sunlight, our eyes would be burnt out by that act. Each morning each of us is protected from such a fiery consumption by being barred from entering our etheric body without the proper preparation. The crossing of that threshold into our etheric body is prevented by a Being that is called the Lesser Guardian of the Threshold who operates similar to a doorman who bars minors from entering a nightclub. The Spiritual World is the nightclub that we must not enter until we are fit for the experience.
And yet, through training in the ancient Mysteries, initiates were able to look directly at the spiritual light of the Sun through the Earth, a process known as seeing the "Sun at Midnight". Once they were able to see the spiritual light of the Sun, they began to experience "a living interplay between the planets and the Sun insasmuch as streams flow continually to and fro - from the planets to the Sun and from the Sun to the planets."
[page 57] Something was revealed spiritually that may be compared with the circulation of the blood in the human body. As the blood flows in living circulation from the heart to the organs and from the organs back again to the heart, so did the Sun reveal itself as the centre of living spiritual streams flowing to and fro between the Sun and the planets. The solar system revealed itself as a spiritual system of living realities, the external manifestation of which is no more than a symbol. Everything manifested by the individual planets pointed to the great spiritual experience just described, as a clock points to the time of occurrences in external life.
Recently it occurred to me that we can deduce, by looking at a clock or our watch, where the Sun is in the sky even though we are not in direct view of, either because of clouds or because we're indoors. Since, as we have seen in earlier Steiner reviews, the physical Sun contains the great Spirit we know as Christ, when we check the time, we are checking the position of Christ in our lives at the moment. Even the most materialistic scientist, when she checks her watch, is performing a spiritual act.
We have seen that the mystic, without proper preparation for descent into the Microcosm, will experience a consuming fire. What can we expect to happen if someone were to have a direct experience of the Macrocosm without proper preparation? The experience would be like being led into a bewildering labyrinth. This would seem to explain why the walking of labyrinths have become as common in the new 21st Century as sensitivity groups were in the middle of the last century. At some level these labyrinth walkers are preparing themselves for ascent into the Macrocosm. When Theseus got lost in the labyrinth, his rescue came in the form of Ariadne's Thread. What is the Ariadne's Thread that will help us to navigate safely through the labyrinth of the Spiritual World today? Rightly understood, Rudolf Steiner's Spiritual Science is the Ariadne's Thread that provides us with feelings imbued with thoughts by means of which we are able to confront the deepest labyrinth. (Page 60)
If one were to enter the Macrocosm unfit or unprepared, one would experience the deepest fear and despair. To prevent such a precipitous entry, the way is barred by a spiritual being called the Greater Guardian of the Threshold. Thus the entry to the Microcosm and Macrocosm are both barred by Spiritual Beings for our own good.
Whenever we learn something new, we must go through four phases. We begin with being unconsciously incompetent at the new task ( We don't know we can't do it.). Then we discover we can do it and move to being consciously incompetent (We now know we can't do it.) We practice diligently and with great effort we learn to do the process successfully if we concentrate. Soon we are doing the process and soon are doing it without thinking. As I type these words, I cannot think about each letter and type with ease. Yet in the eleventh grade in high school, I had to think of each letter when I first began to learn to type. In one short semester I moved through the entire four steps of habit formation. What I didn't realize fully until reading Steiner is the crucial role played by sleep. It is only during sleep that my daily typing exercises are converted into automatic deeds of my fingers moving over the surface of the typewriter keyboard. Even now if I look at my fingers or the keyboard, my typing slows to a crawl. I must trust my fingers to know where to go when I see or think a word, and keep my eyes elsewhere so that I don't interfere with the unconscious competence of my fingers. To summarize: we learn something new, sleep on it, and then it carries us along with it.
[page 63] Every night on going to sleep our souls take with them something form daily life; what we take with us -- the fruit of our experiences -- is transformed during sleep in such a way that it becomes our abilities and capacities. . . . A deeper being is working within us at our further development; when we go to sleep, this being receives the day's experiences and re-moulds them, so that is a later period of life they are at our disposal in the form of faculties.
In the course of history, it seems anomalous that such great thinkers as Isaac Newton would seem to become mystics near the end of their lifetime. This passage from Steiner clarifies that issue for me by explaining that human intelligence does not proceed from Cosmic Thinking, a mistake that is made by so many theorists.
[page 72] Human intelligence actually corresponds to Cosmic Feeling as absorbed in sleep. The greater the human intelligence becomes, the more is it illumined by the inner light that has its source in Cosmic Feeling.
That Cosmic Feeling that we absorb during sleep comes from Cosmic Powers that count on that light streaming "upwards from human life itself to the light that streams down from above." Like the materialistic Law of Conservation of Energy formulated by Robert Mayer, there seems to be a Law of Conservation of Cosmic Light, and that "the stream of forces will constantly diminish unless from human life itself, through efforts to transform thinking, feeling, and willing and to rise into the higher worlds, fresh forces, new light, were to flow back into the great reservoir of Cosmic Light and Cosmic Feeling."
[page 73, 74] We are now living in the epoch when it is essential for men to be conscious that they must not merely rely upon what flows into them from Cosmic Powers but must themselves co-operate in the process of world-evolution.
My wife and I have a framed calligraphy of the following quote of Baal Shem Tov that graces the entrance to our bedroom, "From every human being there arises a light that reaches straight to heaven and when two souls that are destined to be together find each other, their streams of light flow together and a single brighter light goes forth from their united being." In our lives we strive to find others with whom we can increase the brightness of that light that shines forth to replenish the Cosmic Powers.
On page 76 Steiner exhorts us to register this vow which I now take publicly with these words:
I, Bobby Matherne, vow that I will work on my soul to make up for my past negligence from now on.
A popular form of playing cards since the middle of the 20th Century features a design on the back of the cards that has had a strange attraction to me since I was a child. The design shows two bulldogs straining against the chains that are attached from their neck collars to the ground. Above the smiling face of the Man in the Moon is looking down on them. When I first discerned a face in the features of the Moon, I was thirty-five years old, and it was with the help of that design that I was able to see the Man in the Moon for the first time. These words are inscribed at the bottom of the design, "There is a tie that binds us to our home." The image of these bulldogs came to mind when I read the following passage from Steiner.
[page 77] All that fetters us to the Earth, all that binds us to the perishable, appears to us in astral vision as a definite image, the image of a distorted bull, dragging us down.
Steiner is talking about the distortions that accrue from our sins of omission. We are chained to the Earth by our sins of omissions in our will and the image is that of a distorted bull. In our sins of omission in the feeling realm the image is that of a distorted lion and the feeling is that of disharmony. In the thinking realm the image is that of a distorted eagle. (Paraphrased from page 77.)
[page 77] Three distortions of animal forms and one of ourselves - how these three separate images or pictures are related to one another reveals the measure of the work lying ahead of us.
Now comes the shocker: "We ourselves, on our image, are the Lesser Guardian of the Threshold."
[page 78[ It is we ourselves who hinder the possibility of descent into our inner being; we ourselves must work at our own development.
Therein lies the hope for the future of humankind. And how do we go about this process? It begins with the development of the human body so that it acquires the necessary attributes. In the spiritual world before this life we spend a lot of time getting ready for the qualities we are to inherit. But we do more than that: we actually shape and fashion those qualities into the ancestors of the body we will enter.
[page 86] Strange as it may seem, we ourselves have worked out of the spiritual world [on] the physical bodies of our own forefathers, in order gradually to shape and mould the attributes we finally receive at birth as inherited characteristics.
Rightly understood it is a joy to be a slave to a past that we actively were intimately involved with shaping. We should approach this life like Brer Rabbit and yell, "Please don't throw me into that briar patch!"
Some of us may have encountered the person who claims to be on the mystic path who is constantly clamoring that others should find their higher self. There is obviously an Ego there asserting itself for it own selfish aims, but it is so well-disguised under the patter of a sophisticated initiate.
[page 95] Such traits may often be observed in mystics who have been badly guided, who like to speak constantly of the need to find the "higher man" within themselves. In such cases, it is not a "higher man" but a being inferior even by conventional standards.
In Lecture Six Steiner tells us that things that are viewed from only one side create a one-sided truth. This truth I embodied some twenty years ago in Matherne Rule #6 All Meanings are True or AMAT. AMAT means that all meanings are true to the person who states the truth. If I look at one person's one-sided truth from a different side, I can truthfully say, "She is wrong!" AMAT reminds me that she is actually right, from her point of view. This is a recurrent motif in Steiner's lectures, but it is well to repeat it as often in my reviews as he repeats in his public lectures.
[page 112] It is always essential to look at truths not only from the one side but also from the other The fault of most philosophers is not that they say what is false - in many cases their assertions cannot be refuted because they do state truths - but that they make statements which are due to things having been viewed from one side only.
In a graduate course in education, Professor Michael Paulsen introduced me to Peter Elbow's doubting and believing game. It is a technique whereby we consciously make ourselves take a view opposite to our own for the purpose of seeing the world from that one-sided view, or alternately consciously force ourselves to doubt something that we believe is truth so as to see the matter from the opposite side.
[page 120] But there is nothing more useful than to begin to train ourselves by saying: "I have this opinion, the other person has a different one. I will adopt the standpoint that his opinion is just as sound and valuable as my own." -- This is the kind of self-training that makes it possible for us to carry into the Elementary World the habit that enables us to distinguish ourselves from the things ther, although we are within them.
In Lecture Eight Steiner lays out the proposition that what is held back from the spiritual world streaming through us forms the physical organs with which we experience the physical world. We have encountered several times before in earlier Steiner books the concept that the light forms the eye which sees it, but this new insight provides the very process by which the eye and all the other organs were formed. It also applies to organs that will be formed in the future. The spiritual world to us to like water to the fish, as I mentioned earlier in a different context. Water flows through the fish's gills and the oxygen that is held back provides this life-giving essential for the fish. The food in the water that is held back or eaten by the fish provides the rest of the nutrients it requires. Everywhere I look now I see that what is held back, filtered from, absorbed from, extracted from the spiritual and physical worlds forms the basis for our interaction with the spiritual and physical worlds.
Light, rightly understood, consists of a physical and a spiritual substrate. Our eyes hold back a portion of the physical substrate and use that as information about the physical world. Meantime the spiritual substrate flows directly through us like water through the fish's gills and we have taken no note of its presence, up until now. Just as a fish could not exist without the water's existence, so too for us. It is the spiritual substrate of the light that, in flowing through the eye, forms the eye. If that were not the case, the mere presence of light bouncing off the outside of an eyeless proto-human could not have conceivably performed the function of creating the eyes. There had to be some substrate of light, namely the spiritual light, that flowed below the surface of the head to form the organs that eventually were able to hold back a portion of the physical light and enable us to see the physical world - through the portions of the light the physical world holds back, i.e., filters from the spiritual light and reflects back to our eyes. Rightly understood, this is the fundamental process by which the physical world has been constructed from the spiritual world.
[page 134] Sense-perception arises through the fact that our eye holds back part of the light from the Elementary World, our ear holds back part of the sound, our other organs hold back part of the fire or warmth; what is not held back, streams into us.
Rightly understood, we human beings are precipitates of the spiritual world - we are what is held back as the Spirit streams through us. Steiner says that in the Microcosm of our human bodies exists a mirror-image of the activities of the Beings of the Macrocosm. The catch-phrase "As Above, so Below" certainly applies here.
In the middle of the previous century, the fad was to find a guru to study under. This was an atavistic approach to Initiation that goes back to the ancient Eastern customs, and one that is no longer appropriate for modern human beings. The new approach to Initiation stresses the independence and freedom of the individual and thus the guru of old has and must necessarily come to be the tutor of today. The human guru of old has been pre-emptied by Christ Jesus from now on.
In Lecture Ten Steiner focuses on the logic of the head and the logic of the heart. We currently live with a physical heart that was formed as a result of an earlier logic of the heart that was unconscious, in other words, the logic of the heart flowed from the World of Spirit. One can think of our present organ called the heart as what was held back as the logic of the heart flowed from the spiritual realm. Then we entered the World of Reason and our head was formed from what was held back from what streamed through our heads from the spiritual realm called the World of Reason.
In the future a conscious logic of the heart will be formed out of the World of Archetypal Images. The heart had to precede the development of the brain, but it continues to evolve and is ready to move to the new logic of the heart now that the brain is formed.
[page 179] There are three successive states of humanity: (1) Man as heart-man; (2) Present-day man when everything is related to the brain and its activity; (3) Man of the future, of whose nature we can have a faint inkling.
As a new reader to Steiner I wondered how he could say the things he did with such assurance, with no qualifications. He said his truths and allowed me the freedom to agree or not agree with him, but how did he know what he said was true? The following passage from Lecture Eleven will give us a clue as he talks about how the authentic spiritual investigator acts.
[page 185] He does not try to convince by his expositions, but he maintains that what lives in his soul lives in eery human soul and that his task is to give the stimulus for something which can and should well forth of itself from every soul.
As we come to the end of this study of the Macrocosm and Microcosm, it would do well to look back to our beginnings in this solar system which began with Old Saturn, a large diffuse cloud of proto-material known as warmth.
[page 196] From the Earth we go back to Old Moon, from Old Moon to Old Sun, from Old Sun to Old Saturn. But we realise that Old Saturn issued directly from the spirit. Therefor we can understand the origin of our Earth by going back to the spirit - not to a cosmic nebula, but to the spirit, and by picturing how the beginning of Earth-evolution originated from the combined work of spiritual Beings.
Thus, with Steiner's help as our tutor, we are led to see that the Universe did not start with one Big Bang, but rather it is an ongoing Cosmic Fireworks display of the Spirit!
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