Welcome to those new members- Cheers *clink, clink!*
Further on this mystery of alcohol:
Apart from the direction alcohol guided us -downwards - there is also
the fascinating connection it has with the Self.
Here's the quote from the Gospel of John Lectures 23 May 1908:
"In future, people will be able to say in the most literal sense that it
was the task of alcohol to pull man down into the material world so far
that he would become selfish, and that alcohol would lead him to demand
the use of his self for his own purpose, so that it would no longer
serve the whole nation... Alcohol has removed man's capacity to feel at
one with the universe in the higher worlds."
It is interesting that a people such as the Australian Aboriginal still
had this feeling of at oneness with the land and cosmos. They of course
did not have the use of alcohol 'til the arrival of the white man.
After the Incarnation the use of alcohol became decadent. It was Christ
who was to bring the gift of the independent Self:
"His mission consisted of bringing man the full power of the Self, the
inner independence of soul."
-St John Lectures
Alcohol prepared the way for the independent Self but now it creates a
separate self of its own.
The Self manifests itself on Earth by the agency of the ethereal warmth:
"The effect of ethereal heat permeates the total organism...it is the
medium through which man's spiritual self can come into contact with the
living, physical body."
Alcohol acts like an interior imitation of sunshine. Through this
separate warmth organisation it now interferes with the Self. The Self
"We may therefore say that to take alcohol is to produce a counter-ego
in oneself. For it has the effect of influencing action that should
spring freely from the resolution of the ego: alcohol thinks, feels and
acts in the ego's place. A person in this situation lets a purely
external, material ego dictate to him. Alcohol prevents his own ego from
acting, thus making him its slave."
This is "Big Al's" game and purpose now- slavedriver.
I'll tie up the loose ends on this thread with Dr.Steiner's description
on the effects of alcohol on the body next time.
RS from "The Problems of Nutrition"
"It would take too long to explain the spiritual scientific reason
showing that alcohol produces physically and in an external way out of
the plant, just what a man should develop physically within himself
through his ego being centered within him. It is a fact inwardly
perceived through spiritual science that when a person drinks alcohol,
it takes over the specific activity that otherwise belongs wholly to the
person's ego. A person who drinks much alcohol needs less food and his
body will require less nourishment than is normally required in the
process of combustion.
It calls forth forces that otherwise would be called forth by the ego's
inner penetration. Thus, a person can externalize the activity of his
ego by infusing his body with alcohol. Consequently, alcohol imitates
and copies the activity of the ego, and you can understand why it is
that people turn to it. To the extent, however, that a man replaces his
inner self with such a substitute, to that extent does he become its
slave. If otherwise qualified, a man will be better able to unfold the
best forces of his ego when he abstains from alcohol altogether. By
drinking alcohol an inner hindrance is created behind which something
takes place that actually should and would be accomplished through the
activity of the ego itself if the hindrance had not been produced. "