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Re: Answer for letter 38657 I - more

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  • Stephen Clarke
    ... SRC: Not everything is possible all at once! there is a joke(!) in English - it probably could translate well - that Time is Nature s way of keeping
    Message 1 of 67 , Nov 28, 2008
      Dear Ottmar:

      --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "ottmar12"
      <ottmar12@...> wrote:

      > I greatly enjoy and appreciate the dialogue with you, however we (both
      > ?) feel that it somehow goes too far, takes too much time and, what is
      > more important for me, too personal for public debate, with too personal
      > I mean coming to the heart of our existance, really existential
      > questions and I won't reveal this on a public list. To sort out any
      > misunderstandings and really make clear what we mean is close to
      > impossible in these letters, with our greatly different backgrounds and
      > spiritual practises, with our different mother tongues. I mean, even if
      > we were sitting together, face to face, it would take a long time to
      > really express ourselves and make us understood.
      > With these words said, I hope you aren't upset that I try to reduce
      > the scope of our dialogue and keep it to more narrow questions. God
      > willing we'll meet one day and talk face to face.

      SRC: Not everything is possible all at once! there is a joke(!)
      in English - it probably could translate well - that Time is Nature's
      way of keeping everything from happening all at once.

      > I read between your lines and I somehow felt that you reject the western
      > civilization on Indian soil. I can understand that and I have always
      > felt that in the US American public there is very little conscious that
      > they live on old old Indian soil, the injustice done to the slaves is
      > present in the public consciusness, but not the Indian `story'.
      > In German we have the expression a person, a family or corporation still
      > has `a corpse in the cellar'. I would advise to face this matter
      > consciously and thus perhaps lessen the result or karma of it which will
      > come and whether it is then recognized as such or not.

      SRC: Yes. In English this racial/cultural karma is "The skeleton
      in the closet." This is a huge - and, I submit insurmountable unless
      fully confronted - barrier for anyone of european extraction who
      wishes to do real spiritual work on these continents. Thus my
      discouragement with anthroposophical efforts here, which do not
      acknowledge this factor.

      > You talk of the `process of anthroposophy', do you mean the
      > conscious decision to begin the path of spiritual development?

      SRC: No. Hmmm.... Let's see.... OK: consider this anthroposophy
      of mine as a verb. (This is not an original idea.) What matters is not
      the result but the method which leads to the result. Which is more
      important? If you have the result without the method, you have no
      freedom with it. If you have the method but not the results, it does
      not matter, for you can generate the results from scratch all by
      yourself. Steiner said this, too, and it true not because he said it,
      but he said it because it's true.
      By the method I mean the process of rigorous thinking,
      contemplation, meditation, study, prayer, living in miracle, giving it
      up, waiting in patience, discouragement, more rigorous thinking, more
      contemplation, more, meditation, more study, etc., until you can
      arrive at the same results as your teacher or initiator initially
      demonstrated to you. Then you are a free autonomous individual who can
      work in cooperative fashion with the spiritual world - the goal of
      anthroposophy,or any other worthwhile spiritual path.
      This "process" is the invisible internal one of digestion and
      integration which yields the results which are a secondary phenomenon.
      The process itself is primary, and it is Steiner's epistemology.
      Without it, people fall into the fatal error of thinking that they
      know something if they read that Steiner said it.
      An example: Prokofieff does this all the time, and as far as I
      can tell, there is nothing that he "knows" that he has not taken from
      what he reads and believes from Steiner. His "process" is reading,
      remembering, cataloging, and rearranging. AS Gordienko has noted with
      such acuity, his results are frequently nonsense, but he cannot know
      this because his process has no interiority.

      > Stephen: Example: Steiner's Anthroposophy is a universal system of
      > knowledge. If this is so, then all of what happened to Africa, China,
      > South America, Australia, Antarctica, Micronesia is of no account, nor
      > are our incarnations which took place there. I do not
      > understand. Is it a misunderstanding of the term `universal'?, a
      > term which you used, I'm not sure about Steiner. (However, I
      > don't want to incarnate in Antarctica J )

      SRC: Steiner - and, more to the point, anthroposophists - assume
      that what has been true of human and cultural evolution as evidenced
      in the India - Iran - Egypt - Greece - Europe progression yields
      observations and conclusions which can be applied to all peoples in
      all parts of the world. This may be true or it may not be true, but
      this tendency to generalize is dangerous, and, in my experience in
      North America, is open to serious doubt, and deserves critical
      examination. If there is anyone doing this besides myself, I do not
      know of them, and because of occult resistance within the Society to
      this work of mine which confronts the racial karma I noted above, I
      have had to leave.

      > Sorry Stephen, I'm not as bright as you have perhaps thought. What
      > is CW which you detest so much? What does it stand for?

      SRC: Oh: Conventional Wisdom. I had spelled this out earlier in
      that post. Its basically lazy thinking, which should be verboten in a
      Society devoted to the Path of Thinking.

      > There are sayings or traditions of what Steiner said: `Better a
      > steak on the plate than in your head.' I'm a vegetarian for
      > nearly 40 years now but I agree with him. Or this one and I think you
      > like it: `Ich will Lokomotiven und keine Anhaenger.' That's
      > a pun on Anhaenger, meaning waggon on a train behind the locomotive and
      > adherent, supporter. That means I'm looking for locomotives (people
      > who move by themselves) and not waggons/adherents. Sometimes
      > I'm not sure where your rejection goes to, to Steiner or the
      > anhaenger or few locomotives?

      SRC: I revere Steiner as the Mage of the Age, no "ifs", "ands",
      or "buts." What happened to his impulses after he died is a
      historical tragedy of the very first magnitude, not least because they
      were thwarted mostly, not by his enemies, but by his so-called
      "supporters" - then and now. This angers me greatly.

      > Stephen: Anthroposophy is paddling around in a very small puddle, in
      > spite of all the high-mind task about cosmic realities. OTTMAR:
      > paddling in a puddle nice, I do enjoy play with language.

      SRC: Thank you. I mean to refer to 1. the dictum that the map is
      not the territory, and 2. that the concerns of anthroposophists about
      the course of the Society which they think are of such world-shaking
      importance are frequently of no account to anyone other than themselves.

      Thank you, Ottmar; we just had Thanksgiving Holiday (burp!) I guess it
      was just another day to you, but I hope it was a good one.

    • Stephen Clarke
      ... or so. ... SRC: That s a great story, Frank. I hadn t ever thought of it like that, but what he said about Carlos not being able to survive the things he
      Message 67 of 67 , Nov 29, 2008
        --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "Frank Thomas Smith"
        <eltrigal78@...> wrote:
        > --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "Stephen Clarke"
        > <mozartg@> wrote:
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > Ottmar: `Guadalupana, Pte San Win (White Buffalo Calf Woman), or
        > > > First Woman' never heard of it, sorry. What you write in this post
        > > > reminds me of Carlos Castaneda whose books I read 20 years ago
        or so.
        > >
        > SRC: Many people have read these books, and he refers to a great
        > > many things, exotic, that do exist in the culture. But he is
        > > unreliable for anything else other than exciting curiosity and teh
        > > looking elsewhere. I know the "Don Juan" cited in the books and he
        > > recalls that Calos passed through at one time and was a foolish person
        > > who got richoff of writing books that other foolish people would buy.
        > > But it is funny how these things work; a lot of people did start
        > > looking deeper as a result.
        > F: I was in the (U.S.) army in Frankfurt and years later, a civilian,
        > I was visiting and in the neighborhood of a bar I used to frequent
        > there, so I stopped in for a potent German beer and to see if it had
        > changed. Not much had changed, except there were fewer Americans and
        > more Germans. Why? "It's the exchange rate, stupid." I got to talking
        > to an American Indian - a sergeant who also acted as bouncer for free
        > beer. He told me some Indian stories and I asked him if he'd read the
        > CastaƱeda books. He said he had, I asked if he thought they were true.
        > Yes and no, he said, and didn't seem to want to say more, but I
        > insisted. He said what CastaƱeda wrote was true, but that he had
        > participated was not true. "No white man could have survived that."
        > He said he was the tribal chief's son, but that didn't make him chief
        > automatically, the elders or maybe he said the medicine man, or both,
        > decided that. And the chief should be a warrior, which is why he'd
        > joined the army. He'd been to Vietnam, but hadn't been wounded the
        > first time, so he volunteered for a second tour and was wounded - all
        > of which made his election as chief a sure thing. He only had a year
        > or two till retirement, when he would return to the tribe. And with
        > his retirement pay he wouldn't have to depend on the tribe's meager
        > resources.(This was a long time ago, so I don't remember which tribe
        > or many details of the conversation.) Being chief wasn't easy, he
        > said, there were many problems. I told him about Steiner's threefold
        > society idea and he thought it was great. He offered me the position
        > of chief adviser, something like secretary of state. I was on my third
        > beer, so I think I accepted, or at least said I would seriously
        > consider it. Maybe I missed a big chance.
        > Frank

        SRC: That's a great story, Frank. I hadn't ever thought of it like
        that, but what he said about Carlos not being able to survive the
        things he wrote about - that rings true and is very idiomatic. and
        that invitation - frequently there is no time dimension to things like
        that; if you ran into him tomorrow, you could probably take him up on
        right then and there and move on as if not time at all had passed.

        Good luck,

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