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1748Re: [anthroposophy] Seeking Insight RE: Karma and Reincarnation

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  • john.shirtliff
    Jun 26, 2001
      It is my understanding of Steiner that it is our task or duty to get on with the exercises necessary to connect in waking day consciousness with the spiritual world. The efforts required are, of necessity, strenuous, but no more than physical exercise.
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: jeff auen
      Sent: Saturday, June 23, 2001 3:40 PM
      Subject: Re: [anthroposophy] Seeking Insight RE: Karma and Reincarnation

      Apologies for the delay, and I haven't found precisely what I was looking for in the Karmic Relationships lectures but this is a similar approach:

      From: Intimate workings of Karma, Vienna 9 February 1912

      Contained in 'Esoteric Christianity and the mission of Christian Rosencreutz.,Rudolf Steiner Press London UK.

      "We will proceed in a rather curious way. As an experiment, we will imagine that we ourselves have willed whatever may have happened to us. Suppose a loose tile from the roof of a house happened to crash down upon us. We will picture, purely by way of experiment, that this did not happen by chance, and will deliberately imagine that we ourselves climbed on that roof, loosened the tile and then ran down so quickly that we arrived just in time to be hit by it! Like the unfortunate lady who, being discontented with her lot, exposed herself to a chill and died of it! In this way, therefore we will imagine that things otherwise attributable to chance have been deliberately and carefully planned by ourselves. And we will also apply the same procedures to matters which are obviously dependent upon the faculties and qualities we happen to possess. Say some arrangement does not work out as planned. If we miss a train, for example, we shall not blame external circumstances but picture to ourselves that it was due to our own slackness. If we think in this way, as an experiment, we shall gradually succeed in creating a kind of being in our imagination, a very extraordinary being, who was responsible for these things - for a stone to have fallen upon us, for some illness, and so forth. We shall realise, of course, that this being is not ourselves; we simply picture such a being vividly and distinctly. And then, after a time, we will have a strange experience in connection with this being. We shall realise that though it is a creature we have only conjured up, yet we cannot free ourselves from him nor from the thought of him, and strange to say he does not stay as he is; he becomes alive and transforms himself within us. And then, when he has gone through this transformation, we get the impression that he is really there within us, And then we become more and more certain that we ourselves have had something to do with the things we constructed in imagination. There is no suggestion whatever that we once actually did them; but such thoughts do, nevertheless, correspond in a certain way with something we have done. We shall tell ourselves: 'I have done this and that, and I am now having to suffer the consequences'. This is a very good exercise for unfolding in the life of feeling a kind of memory of earlier incarnations. The soul seems to feel: 'I myself was there and prepared these things for myself'.

      You will readily understand that is it not easy to awaken the memory of previous incarnations. For just think what mental effort is required to recall something only recently forgotten; genuine mental effort is required. Experiences which occurred in previous incarnations have sunk into the depths of forgetfulness and much has to be done if they are to be remembered. One such exercise has just been described."




      Good example. I recall RS using this in several places to illustrate the nature of our responsibility in karmic events. But notice the train example. Its our present day "slothfulness" that creates the missed train not some past karmic influence ( though at times this can be the case. I was driving once and in a particular mood of recalling something of the past day interactions with someone which in turn took my attention off the road. At that time, 1985 or so, I used to drive fairly fast on this local road but was slowed down by 5 or 10 mph. Just as I approached a familiar intersection, someone went through the stop sign and crossed the street just where I would have been had I been driving normally. I knew in an instant that this was no mistake but a inner protective process had prevented me from being hit. I am sure others have there own stories.)
      It surely seems that we create circumstances freely now and not just as the result of past lives. I still think we are woefully unprepared for truly knowing the details of past lives and karma as it would freeze us in time- being unable to deal with the positive or negative events about to happen. Just recently a young boy was riding his bike and for not reason (provocation) was attacked by 3 pit bulls and mangled beyond recognition. He is still clinging to life. For us to say, it was karmic may be correct but there is so much more to consider. And such an explanation would be shot down and brushed aside as an insult to conventional thinking. Do accidents occur??
      As for recall. I agree. Free floating access to these records just doesn't make sense. We can't even recall what we did during period of time five years ago less 500 hundreds. Vivid pictures of historical events does not preclude that this was us at that time. Where do these pictures come from? Good question.

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