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Re: Spirit and Soul

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  • write3chairs
    ... personal ... threateningly ... beyond ... long as ... very ... awakening... ... kinds of ... iceberg ... eradication ... and ... time was ripe ...
    Message 1 of 22 , May 1, 2007
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      --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "Jean-Marc Nguyen"
      wrote:

      > Hi Jennifer,
      >
      > You wrote:
      >
      > "I could go on, but I think what I'm getting at is wouldn't
      > it be nice if people could look beyond organizations and
      > groups and communities and what they represent, and seek
      > to communicate ideas in a nonthreatening, noncombative way?
      >
      > Still dreaming, as always ..."
      >
      > -------------------------------------------------------------
      >
      > Well Jennifer, as long as *ideas* are to a great extent merely the
      > vehicle of subjective and biased views, the spiritual embodiment of
      personal
      > or collective selfish interests --- they are bound to be expressed
      threateningly
      > and combatively, aren't they?
      > And, as you know, the combativeness of *impure ideas* goes far
      beyond
      > the verbal stage...
      >
      > It seems you are dreaming about Man as an awakened and free Spirit.
      > This dream of yours is the secret dream of the entire planet Earth.
      > But the living nightmare in this world will go on worsening --- as
      long as
      > mankind will remain [spiritually] sound asleep.
      > A build-up of groups and communities of all sorts and sizes is one
      very
      > effective way of preventing the *individual* human Spirit from
      awakening...
      > Think of Nazi Germany or Stalinist USSR, for instance [and all
      kinds of
      > nationalisms and patriotisms, nowadays].
      > The sheer and inhumane physical brutality merely was the tip of the
      iceberg
      > --- but their combative *ideas* [or ideologies] spoke volumes: the
      eradication
      > of *individual* thinking and consciousness [and *group* ideology
      and
      > consciousness as substitutes].
      > Of course, it's no accident that they appeared precisely when the
      time was ripe
      > for the Second Coming of *Christ* [the essence of Man, the
      archetype of Man
      > as a free Individuality, as a spiritual Entity]...
      >
      > Cheers,
      > Jean-Marc

      Thank you, Jean-Marc, for such a thoughtful response. I think what it
      comes down to is that each one of us must summon the courage to
      withstand the heat, the fortitude to endure the reality of which you
      speak. I have lately been thinking about the dilemma, its nature,
      what to do about it. I think it's about reconciliation, and also
      about judgment. But it's also about respecting that others reconcile
      differently, and judge differently, too. Conscience is always going
      to be individual.

      If I could hear your conscience speak, what would it say?

      Cheers to you,
      Jennifer
    • Jean-Marc Nguyen
      Jennifer, you wrote: Thank you, Jean-Marc, for such a thoughtful response. I think what it comes down to is that each one of us must summon the courage to
      Message 2 of 22 , May 6, 2007
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        Jennifer, you wrote:
         
        "Thank you, Jean-Marc, for such a thoughtful response. I think what it
        comes down to is that each one of us must summon the courage to
        withstand the heat, the fortitude to endure the reality of which you
        speak. I have lately been thinking about the dilemma, its nature,
        what to do about it. I think it's about reconciliation, and also
        about judgment. But it's also about respecting that others reconcile
        differently, and judge differently, too. Conscience is always going
        to be individual.

        If I could hear your conscience speak, what would it say?"
         
        ---------------------------------------------------------------------
         
        *Reconciliation* is a truly happy and relevant choice of word, Jennifer.
         
        I also notice that you introduce a word which has a strong moral
        connotation: *conscience*.
         
        If you could hear my conscience speak, what would it say?
        That's a rather unusual and unexpected question, Jennifer --- but my
        conscience seems delighted to find an interested listener --- at last!
        (This conscience of mine is looking down at me right now with 
        this unmistakable reproachful look... :-)
         
        Okay, you asked for it :-)
        So here's what *it* might say.
         
        Is a clear understanding of the *reconciliation* process possible
        without a true knowledge of the initial *separation* process?
        Certainly not.
        What is this *separation* process to begin with?
        It's the cosmic history of mankind up to the present day: involution,
        the gradual descent of the spiritual essence of Man into the darkness
        of the physical and material world.
        What are the main characteristics of this cosmic involutional descent?
        Separation by means of gradual differentiation: gender, race, people, etc...
        What is the ultimate stage of the differentiation process?
        The atomization of the spiritual essence of Man.
        When does that actually happen?
        When human atoms begin to say *I* --- i.e., when human beings
        discover *self-consciousness*.
        What is the price of self-consciousness?
        The [necessary and inevitable] delusion of a dual  separation.
        Steiner frequently referred to the gradual loss of spiritual consciousness,
        to the gradual decline and erosion in mankind's instinctive faculty of
        spiritual perception [atavistic clairvoyance] throughout the post-Atlantean
        era. This gradual deterioration process culminates in a total disconnection
        from the spiritual world [as far as consciouness is concerned].
        During the 5,000 years of the small *Kali Yuga*[Dark Age], which
        ended in the year 1899, "the doors of the spiritual world were closed"
        and the souls were [more than ever] in exile...
        With regard to the human soul, this disconnection means nothing else but
        dying to the spiritual world - and *this death* is exemplified on Golgotha!
        In other words, from a spiritual point of view: the human physical body
        became a coffin, a tomb, a grave in which the soul/spiritual nature of Man
        was buried [i.e., it was confined to the physical and material world]...
        Why was this sacrificial death necessary?
        Precisely in order to bring about a birth: that of the *I am*, the birth
        of self-consciousness in the physical world.
        This is one aspect of the dual separation: dying to the spiritual world
        - to the point that the newborn self-conscious spirit negates the reality
        of its spiritual  homeland [materialism, atheism]...
        What is the second aspect of the dual separation I mentioned?
        The existential isolation and separation the *I* experiences among
        other similar human spiritual atoms [Rilke's "infinite distances"...]
         
        Now, what is one very decisive feature of the *I am*?
        It's a double-edged sword with one particularly lethal cutting
        edge: potentially unlimited individual selfishness!
        Consequently, human atoms inevitably collide because of their
        selfish, personal, subjective, passionate - views, thoughts, interests,
        desires, etc... [the few examples you gave illustrate that very well].
        Things being what they are, the *heat* you mentioned and the general
        temperature are bound to increase...
        The crux of the matter here, Jennifer, is to uncover the delusive nature
        of the personal, subjective, everyday *I* itself: it is full of itself,
        but nonetheless largely a spiritual void.
        In other words, our usual everyday *I* is hardly anything else but
        an ephemeral caricature of the real spiritual *Ego*. It is to a great
        extent merely an empty form or receptacle longing for the blissful feeling
        of genuine fullness.
        What does all this mean?
        This means  that the earthly human being will increasingly yearn [as long
        as he isn't totally submerged by and in selfishness] to become
        *reconciled* with Himself --- Himself being the plenitude of his true
        original spiritual nature and essence.
        And this is why spiritual science came down from above as soon as
        the Dark Age ended. Spiritual science is not a matter of belief; it is
        a revelation of Man's origin, true nature, and cosmic odyssey --- which
        every human soul is absolutely free to penetrate and feed on or not
        [and this is cosmic *respectfulness*, Jennifer].
        This first aspect or facet of the reconciliation process will necessarily
        and inherently induce its second aspect: Rilke's "infinite distances"
        will metamorphose into genuine spiritual proximity and brotherhood.
         
        Of course, Jennifer: my conscience's intention :-) merely was to try to
        illuminate a little the grandiose cosmic background behind our daily
        hardships in a very conflictual world...
         
        Cheers and happy Sunday!
         
        Jean-Marc

         
      • write3chairs
        ... Jennifer. ... I m so glad I asked, Jean-Marc. Thanks a whole lot for illuminating the dark places. :) Do you ever ask yourself, Who mirrors my deepest
        Message 3 of 22 , May 9, 2007
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          --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "Jean-Marc Nguyen"
          wrote:

          > *Reconciliation* is a truly happy and relevant choice of word,
          Jennifer.
          > [...] my conscience's intention :-) merely was to try to
          > illuminate a little the grandiose cosmic background behind
          > our daily hardships in a very conflictual world...

          I'm so glad I asked, Jean-Marc. Thanks a whole lot for illuminating
          the dark places. :)

          Do you ever ask yourself, "Who mirrors my deepest desires?" I think
          every soul longs for its counterpart, that heart beating harmoniously
          together, the one that warms your own heart so that it radiates
          pleasure throughout your whole body, that "coffin" you mentioned. I
          think of my soulmates, people with whom I share vital connections,
          and feel grateful, overall.

          Our desires can be like invitations to disaster sometimes, though.
          For instance, did you ever say to yourself, "If I can't have X, I
          will selfishly withhold Y." When a pathway is blocked by
          circumstances out of one's control, a feeling of helplessness and
          victimization permeates the body. Depression is inevitable; it is the
          natural response. Feeling those feelings cannot be escaped; the only
          release from them is acceptance.

          We talk about the weight of things, heaviness. What *is* this weight
          that presses against us? I think it is conscience. Watchful eyes and
          I's. Is anybody watching you now? (Perhaps.) Any disapproving stares
          from the rafters? (I hope not.)

          Reality is only and always what it is. I think therefore I am, and
          those thoughts arise out of our deepest longings, and out of our
          consciousness.

          Betrayal of conscience leads to spiritual crisis, I think.

          Cheerful Wednesday wishes!

          Jennifer

          > Cheers and happy Sunday!
          >
          > Jean-Marc
        • Jean-Marc Nguyen
          Jennifer, you wrote: Betrayal of conscience leads to spiritual crisis, I think. ... Well Jennifer, I think this applies beautifully to mankind as a whole,
          Message 4 of 22 , May 15, 2007
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            Jennifer, you wrote:
             
            "Betrayal of conscience leads to spiritual crisis, I think."
             
            -------------------------------------------------------
             
            Well Jennifer, I think this applies beautifully to mankind as a whole,
            especially at the time when the Source of Life feels most unwelcome,
            patiently waiting out in the rain, on the threshold of our graves.
            Yes, Judas again...
             
            Cheers,
            Jean-Marc
             

             
          • write3chairs
            I was rather astonished to receive this poem from a good friend yesterday. The astonishment was because the theme so closely matches some of the themes here in
            Message 5 of 22 , Mar 1, 2009
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              I was rather astonished to receive this poem from a good friend
              yesterday. The astonishment was because the theme so closely matches
              some of the themes here in the group lately.

              Jennifer

              ---

              it dreams in sleep, closed eyes rolling
              behind eyelids—it knows no justice,
              no love or blind illusions, it sees only hearts
              beating softly across long fields without end.
              it knows no boundaries, there is nowhere
              it ends, there is nowhere—it begins,
              undulating, rolling like mossy rocky hills,
              these mysteries hiding from sight,
              always at the corners of our eyes,
              beckoning us to follow them, to play
              new games with them, to hold new rings
              for them. these blues, these eyes
              each stone each morsel of heart,
              each beating, pounding moment,
              i would sign my name in blood
              for your torment to end. i would spin
              my world into muck, watch as we wash
              ourselves into some endless vacuum
              into the holy temple of fire.
              in dreams, in sleep, closed eyes rolling
              behind those lashes, the whip strikes flesh,
              smoke billows from fires and covers cave walls.
              i remember this life. i remember all the lives
              that ever came before. the veneer is crackled
              and spun into melted threads of silver,
              slivers of gauzy wing material, flesh and metal
              mixing within each other. your bowl
              made of flesh, this vessel made of loyalty
              i came to conquer, watching softly, steadily
              the easing of pain comes in and i think
              i think there is nothing else to think.
              flowers grow where you step,
              flowers sprout from the earth
              and scent the air with spices,
              cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, passion.
              i, holding my hand, i standing alone
              on this magnificent shore, jagged stones
              stab the sky as waves cleave themselves
              on their crowns, eddies whirl and jostle
              flotsam and foam, the sea is a lover
              a pearl lodged in my heart that won't be removed,
              look yonder—a gull coming to wrap its wings
              around my neck, look further, a flock of them
              wrapping themselves around my neck.
              i would like to tell a story, but i can no longer speak.
              i would like to cry a lullaby, but i am too weak.
              i stand upon the shoulders, the palaces fall
              to the ground, this dust and rubble, this mess of nerves
              each thing falling from one form to the next.

              (prodigal elf)
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