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Thread: Rudolf Steiner

  1. #1
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    Rudolf Steiner

    Rudolf Steiner was the founder of anthroposophy, a spiritual philosophy influenced by theosophy and esoteric Christianity. I don't know enough about him or it to comment much yet, but I have found that his writings are largely available online, so for anyone knowing German this can prove interesting esoteric literature:

    The works are numbered GAxyz (GA being an acronym of "Gesamtausgabe" = "Complete works"). I'm for example currently reading GA 103, "Das Johannes-Evangelium." about the Steiner's esoteric interpretation of the apostle John. I see English translations are available, too, so for example here the contents of GA103:

    Gospel of John: Lecture I: The Doctrine of the Logos
    Gospel of John: Lecture II: Esoteric Christianity
    Gospel of John: Lecture III: The Mission of the Earth
    Gospel of John: Lecture IV: The Raising of Lazarus
    Gospel of John: Lecture V: The Seven Degrees of Initiation
    Gospel of John: Lecture VI: The "I AM"
    Gospel of John: Lecture VII: The Mystery of Golgotha
    Gospel of John: Lecture VIII: Human Evolution in its Relation to the Christ Principle
    Gospel of John: Lecture IX: The Prophetical Documents and the Origin of Christianity
    Gospel of John: Lecture X: The Effect of the Christ Impulse Within Mankind
    Gospel of John: Lecture XI: Christian Initiation
    Gospel of John: Lecture XII: The Nature of the Virgin Sophia and of the Holy Spirit

    There's a huge body of writings available, that's for sure. AFAIK Steiner and the anthroposophic branch of the theosophic movement were known for being steeped in esoteric Christianity, and this was part of the schism with theosophy at large that in the opinion of some had a too strong slant towards Eastern teachings. (Though I have to admit that I know not enough about the matter to explain it any better than this.)

  2. #2
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    Re: Rudolf Steiner

    I read one of his books and it was incredibly boring. However, after talking to someone who is a student of his teachers, I found out that this was probably the worst book he ever wrote.
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  3. #3

    Re: Rudolf Steiner

    CFTraveller: Do you remember the title of the book that you read?

    I haven't read many of his books, but the one that I have read and found quite interesting, although slightly confusing and difficult (before getting used to his style of writing), is this book right here:

    The book discusses our connection with the ancient civilizations before the Egyptian era such as Lemurian, Atlantis, and as the title states; Rudolph attempts to explain some of the Egyptian mysteries. The book covers some other interesting topics connected to these civilizations, some macro-cosmic aspects, I found this part quite interesting:

    "Now, for once, let us look at the earth itself. When it still had sun and moon within itself, the earth was only a sort of etheric mist of vast extent, within which the human germs were active, while the germs of the other beings animals, plants, and minerals slumbered. Since only human germs were present, there were no eyes to behold these events externally, hence the description given here is visible only for the clairvoyant vision in retrospect. It is given on the hypothesis that it is what one would have seen had one been able at that time to observe from a point in universal space." -Rudolph Steiner

  4. #4
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    Re: Rudolf Steiner

    Thanks for the pic of the book- I don't remember the title but it was about education and youngsters.
    I will put Egyptian Myths and Mysteries on my to-read list, as I've long wanted to read something I'd enjoy, and I think this one may be it.
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  5. #5

    Re: Rudolf Steiner

    btw, one can read almost all books online (English and German), e.g. here
    This collector of useless clutter.

  6. Re: Rudolf Steiner

    Rudolf Steiner wrote a book on how to achieve knowledge of higher worlds. The book is not about energy work. It gives some instructions, and it also says this (This uses English translations):

    "There are other ways which lead more quickly to the goal, but what is here explained has nothing to do with them, because they have certain effects which no experienced spiritual scientist considers desirable. Since fragmentary information concerning these ways is continually finding its way into publicity, express warning must be given against entering upon them. For reasons which only the initiated can understand, these ways can never be made public in their true form. The fragments appearing here and there can never lead to profitable results, but may easily undermine health, happiness, and peace of mind. It would be far better for people to avoid having anything to do with such things than to risk entrusting themselves to wholly dark forces, of whose nature and origin they can know nothing."

    Oh dear, we'd better avoid risking undermining health, happiness and peace of mind, and having certain effects which a magic man considers undesirable, whatever those things are. My concern from this bit is that it says it's possible to do something that has a bad effect.

    Rudolf Steiner called the primary energy centers lotus flowers, this being figurative because they aren't literally lotus flowers.

    "In undeveloped persons these lotus flowers are dark in color, motionless and inert. In the clairvoyant, however, they are luminous, mobile, and of variegated color. Something of this kind applies to the medium, though in a different way; this question, however, need not be pursued here any further.

    Now, when the student begins his exercises, the lotus flowers become more luminous; later on they begin to revolve. When this occurs, clairvoyance begins. For these flowers are the sense-organs of the soul, and their revolutions express the fact that the clairvoyant perceives supersensibly."

    Rudolf Steiner's instructions have a section where they talk about the lotus flowers of the throat, heart, and tummy. In his instructions he speaks about half of the petals, saying the other half will become active on their own.
    For example, the 16-petaled lotus flower of the throat, going through eight petals, he explains that they are about: the way in which ideas are acquired ; control of resolutions ; speech ; regulation of outer action ; management of the whole of his life ; human endeavour ; the endeavour to learn as much from life as possible ; and introspection. These develop this lotus flower. Thoughts and speech harmonising with occurrences in the outer world, not thinking or saying anything untrue.

    He also said this:

    "Now this lotus flower may be made to develop in another way by following certain other instructions. But all such methods are rejected by true spiritual science, for they lead to the destruction of physical health and to moral ruin. They are easier to follow than those here described. The latter, though protracted and difficult, lead to the true goal and cannot but strengthen morally.

    The distorted development of a lotus flower results not only in illusions and fantastic conceptions, should a certain degree of clairvoyance be acquired, but also in errors and instability in ordinary life. Such a development may be the cause of timidity, envy, vanity, haughtiness, willfulness and so on in a person who hitherto was free from these defects."

    In this book after the an explanation of six petals of the 12-petalled lotus flower in the chest, it says:

    "As before, special instructions can be given to bring this lotus flower to fruition, but here again the perfect symmetry of its form depends on the development of the qualities mentioned, the neglect of which results in this organ being formed into a caricature of its proper shape. In this case, should a certain clairvoyance be attained, the qualities in question may take an evil instead of a good direction. A person may become intolerant, timid, or contentious toward his environment; may, for instance, acquire some feeling for the sentiments of others, and for this reason shun them or hate them. This may even reach the point where, by reason of the inner coldness that overwhelms him when he hears repugnant opinions, he is unable to listen, or he may behave in an objectionable manner.

    The development of this organ may be accelerated if, in addition to all that has been stated, certain other injunctions are observed which can only be imparted to the student by word of mouth. Yet the instructions given above do actually lead to genuine esoteric training, and more-over, the regulation of life in the way described can be advantageous to all who cannot or will not undergo esoteric training. For it does not fail to produce an effect upon the organism of the soul, even though slowly. As regards the esoteric student, the observance of these principles is indispensable. Should he attempt esoteric training without conforming to them, this could only result in his entering the higher worlds with inadequate organs, and instead of perceiving the truth he would be subject to deceptions and illusions. He would attain a certain clairvoyance, but for the most part, be the victim of greater blindness than before. Formerly he at least stood firmly within the physical world; now he looks beyond this physical world and grows confused about it before acquiring a firm footing in a higher world. All power of distinguishing truth from error would then perhaps fail him, and he would entirely lose his way in life. It is just for this reason that patience is so necessary in these matters. It must ever be borne in mind that the instructions given in esoteric training may go no further than is compatible with the willing readiness shown to develop the lotus flowers to their regular shape. Should these flowers be brought to fruition before they have quietly attained their correct form, mere caricatures would be the result. Their maturity can be brought about by the special instructions given in esoteric training, but their form is dependent on the method of life described above."

    In the book Rudolf Steiner also says that although some things are not described in it, the instructions in the book are enough, although it will be slow just going on them. I am guessing that the instructions for how to bring these flowers to fruitation are energy work

    In Robert Bruce's book Energy Work though, he doesn't give the warning that you can go mad from developing your primary energy centres with energy work without being careful with your thoughts. Does anyone know what Rudolf Steiner was talking about? Is it dangerous to bring your primary energy centres to fruitation without developing their form by working on their petals?

    Also a book on Chi Gong says that with Nei Dan (internal elixir), which involves guiding chi with your mind, you can do some of it safely, but deeper practices should be done with the supervision of an expert because you could go wrong and go mad or lose your life.

    I've got another question on spiritual development, do some methods have better results than others, and can you do something irreversible that you'll regret? Rudolf Steiner said that something to do after developing the primary energy centres is the creation of a core of some sort, but that you should not create it in the chest because then although you may gain some clairvoyant ability you won't know how it corresponds with the physical world, so you should create it in the head, and then move it down to the throat, and then move it down to the chest.
    So that's an example of a mistake you could make. Is it possible to develop your primary energy centres in an inferior way and just have to live with it, when you could have done it better? Or is it fine? I'm reluctant to do energy work without knowing if I can do something irreversible that's not good. Another idea I've had is that stimulating the energy body in certain ways, although they would help, could programme them with the memories of those particular movements, like with morphic resonance, when it would be better if when you move your subtle energy with your mind, you're moving it in certain ways that you would want it to move in general when you're not doing energy work, so you'd have an energy body that tends to swirl around on your palms and feet soles, and move back and forth at the joints and do these other movements, when you could be conditioning it to do something else. If the etheric body and morphic fields are connected then maybe this could be a concern to someone like me who doesn't have the full picture.

    Morphic resonance is something researched by Rupert Sheldrake, it's about nature having a memory, like members of a certain breed of rat getting better at learning something because other rats of the same breed did it, and newly crystallised substances getting easier to crystallise over time, and a family being a certain way because of something that happened in a previous generation, and he thinks this guides the growth of organisms too, and that it's responsible for memory.
    Last edited by Minyan; 21st April 2019 at 11:53 AM.

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