Re: Spiritual Sun
- My cup runneth over - perhaps semi-literaly as that's one heck of a transition!
Yes, I know that book, and mentioned it here once; it's by Geoffrey Ahern and is actually not too bad, at least compared to the awful stuff Staudi writes. As I said, I read him when I was first trying to weigh up Steiner in my mid-late 20s. He took the position of the fairly open-minded skeptic - the kind Staudi likes to claim to be but isn't - and I was interested to see the negatives that such a perspective could throw at Steiner. They weren't much beyond the usual 'it's all a myth', and I was only too painfully aware from my own initial response to Steiner of that kind of assessment. But the deeper investigation, into the epistemology, the contact with science, etc that I made took me way beyond Ahern's surface account and into a journey I had to make myself and that has never finished (how the WC hate that 'journey' metaphor, with that likes of Diana calling it 'cult-thought')
I'm glad you like the spiritual sun posting. It's a big topic and there's lot's more Steiner of course, such as this bit on the famous Italian utopianist, Thomas Campanella (his earlier incarnations intersect with the culture and period of North Africa that are referred to in your Loyolla-Swedenbourg quote):
"Let us now look closely at the life of Thomas Campanella in so far as is necessary for an understanding of his karma. He was born with a truly remarkable receptivity for the Christian education which he received. Thus at an early age he began to study the Summaof St. Thomas Aquinas. Out of the very moods and feelings which he had acquired through his former visionary life, which became transformed ever more and more into their counterpart into the impulse to learn to know things in their very forms of thought he entered with full life into the strong element of thought which is to be found in the Summa of St. Thomas Aquinas. Thus he studied with enthusiasm and so became a Dominican in the 16th century.
But into his thinking life which he tries to hold most strictly in the direction in which thought is held in the Summa of St. Thomas Aquinas, there enters continually a certain restlessness of that atavistic visionary spiritual life which he had lived before. Thus it is remarkable to see how Campanella actually looked for supports and points of contact in order to bring some inner order and connection into that element which he had once commanded when he had been a visionary in his perceptions of the world. It is remarkable to see how on the one hand Thomas Campanella became a Dominican with full inner enthusiasm. And yet even in the monastery at Cozenza he makes the acquaintance of a very brilliant Jewish Cabbalist. He now combines the study of the Jewish Cabbala with that which emerges as an echo of his former visionary life, and combines it on the other hand with the Thomism which had evolved in the Dominican Order. All these things were living in him with a kind of visionary longing. He wants to do something to bring to appearance outwardly the full inner light of all his spiritual life. You will not find it in the biographies, but so it appears to spiritual vision. There is a perpetual feeling in his soul: Verily the spirit is everywhere behind all things. Surely then in the human life as well there must be a spirit, the same spirit that is in the universal All.
And these things influenced the sphere of his emotions. He lived in Southern Italy. The country was oppressed by the Spaniards. He took part in a conspiracy for the liberation of Southern Italy. For this conspiracy he was taken prisoner by the Spaniards and pined away in the dungeon from theyear 1599 till 1626, thus living a life excluded from the world, a life of which one may really say that for twenty-seven years his earthly existence was blotted out.
Now let us place the two facts together. When he was imprisoned, Thomas Campanella was at the beginning of the thirties of his life, at the very beginning of the thirties. He spent the ensuing time in prison. That is the one thing. But what kind of a spirit was he?What kind of a personality? He set up the idea of a Sun-State, a Solar State. Can you not see shining through from former incarnations into the soul of Thomas Campanella all those astrological conceptions, those visions of the spiritual world? In his work on the Solar State, he conceives and describes a social Utopia, wherein he imagines that by a rational configuration of the social life, all men may become happy. What he thus described as the City of the Sun, or as the Solar State, has about it a certain monastic severity. A good deal of what he has absorbed from the Dominican Order enters into the way he conceives the structure of the State. And extraordinarily much of his former spirituality finds its way through. At the head of this would-be ideal State, there is to be a single leader, a kind of head Metaphysicus who shall discover out of the spirit the guiding lines for the configuration and administration of the State. Other officials shall stand at the side of this Prime Minister, officials who should carry out even to the smallest detail the rules and regulations which a man of that time could only have had in mind if they arose out of his soul through karmic forces as reminiscences of far earlier conceptions of the earth. But in him all these things arose. In effect he wanted to have his Sun-State administered according to astrological principles. The constellations of the stars were to be carefully observed. Marriages were to take place according to the constellations. The acts of conception were to take place in such a way that births might coincide with certain constellations, which were to be calculated. Thus according to the constellations of the heavens the human race with all its destiny should as it were be born on to the earth."
There is a more good stuff on the preparation for his subsequent incarnation as Staudi's beta noire, the Jewish misogynist intellectual Otto Weiniger, who shot himself at the age of 22 or so in Beethoven's house in Vienna. A couple of quotes may suffice to give an idea:
"Thus in Weiniger you do indeed find something of spiritual vision combined with the extremest rationalism and hatred of what came to him in a former incarnation. Only this hatred now comes forth not as a hatred of his former knowledge but as a hatred of his incarnation as a woman which finds vent in the misogyny carried to a point of absurdity in the book, Sex and Character."
"Nor need we wonder that in the beginning of the twenties of his life he suddenly and quickly felt impelled all at once and for no reason, to go to Italy. During this journey he writes a wonderful little book, Über die letzten Dinge, containing descriptions of elemental Nature which seem almost like an attempt to caricature the descriptions of Atlantis, magnificent, but of course entirely mad from the standpoint of the psychiatrist.
Yet these things must be considered karmically. He suddenly rushes off to Italy, then he returns and spends a short time in the Brunner mountains near Vienna. Having returned from Italy he still writes down a few thoughts that came to him during his journey, magnificent ideas about the harmonies of the moral and the natural world. Then he takes a room in the house where Beethoven died. He lives on for a few days longer in Beethoven's death chamber and now he has finished living through his former imprisonment. He shoots himself. His karma is fulfilled. He shoots himself out of a deep inner impulse, having the idea that if he were to live on he would become a thoroughly bad man. There is no more possibility for him to five, for his karma is fulfilled.
From the point of view which is thus opened out, look at the world of Otto Weiniger, my dear friends. You will see all the hindrances in a soul who is placed so abnormally from the Renaissance age into the present time. You will see all the hindrances that stand in the way and prevent his finding the spiritual, though in the unconscious foundations of the soul he has so much. Now you may draw the conclusion, how many hindrances there are in the Age of Michael to hinder a man from doing full justice to this Age.
For of course it is by no means unthinkable that if the soul of Weiniger had been able to receive a spiritual world-conception he would have been able to continue in his evolution. He need not have put an end to his life by suicide, thus closing the repetition of his life of imprisonment. It is indeed significant to trace in this way how ancient spirituality evolves in souls of men down into modern time and then comes to a standstill. It is just in such interesting phenomena as this that we can see how it is brought to a standstill."
Karmic Relationships: Esoteric Studies - Volume IV, Lecture IX
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "elfuncle" <elfuncle@...> wrote:
> The Spiritual Sun is a most fascinating topic, Ted, thank you for
> bringing it up. Especially the RS lectures on the Mark Gospel (GA 139)
> gives a very powerful presentation. That's where the concept of "the sun
> at midnight" comes from, because as the Gospel account tells us, Christ
> could work most effectively with healing and such after sundown, when
> the solar forces went through the earth. And this is what is being
> blasphemously mocked in a book with this title, and chich the Sugar
> Cherubs cherish so much.
> Swedenborg is also a compelling character, especially if we consider the
> possibility that he was indeed the same individuality who had formerly
> lived as Ignatius Loyola, the founder of Jesuitism, which we have
> mentioned here from time to time:
> "Take the case of Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus,
> who died in the 16th century. When we follow the remarkable destiny of
> the Jesuit Order that he founded, we are compelled to ask the question:
> What kind of life had Ignatius Loyola after he passed through the gate
> of death? And if he has come again, what part has he played in the more
> recent history of mankind? There you have questions which, if they can
> be answered, may well throw a light upon the background of very much
> that has happened in history.
> "Intuitive vision led one back, for example, to a soul who lived in the
> 5th century A.D., not long after St. Augustine, and who was educated in
> the schools of Northern Africa, as was St. Augustine himself. In these
> schools, the personality of whom I am speaking became acquainted with
> all that proceeded from the Manichean wisdom and from the wisdom of the
> East which had, of course, undergone such great changes in a later age.
> In subsequent wanderings he came across to Spain and there absorbed what
> may be called early Kabbalistic doctrine, teachings which open out a
> vista of great cosmic relationships. Education and experience thus
> equipped him with an extraordinary wide outlook, and at the same time
> with knowledge that sprang from two main sources one already in
> decadence and the other just beginning to flourish. The result was to
> give him in one respect a deepened life of soul, but at the same time to
> leave him in uncertainty and doubt.
> "After many travels on earth, this personality passed at length through
> the gate of death; and at a definite point between death and rebirth his
> karma brought him in touch with a particular Genius, a particular
> spiritual Being belonging to the world of Mars.
> "You know that in the period between death and a new birth a human being
> builds up spiritually the karma he has afterwards to bring into physical
> embodiment in later earth-lives. Now not only do other human souls with
> whom he is karmically connected share in this work with him, but the
> Beings, too, of the various spiritual Hierarchies. These Beings have
> tasks to fulfil as the result of what a human soul brings over from
> earlier earth-lives. And so this soul of whom I am speaking was engaged
> in building up his karma for the next life on earth. Now it happened
> that through all he had received and done, through all he had thought
> and felt in earlier lives, especially in the life that was particularly
> significant and of which I have just given you a brief sketch, he was
> brought very near to a spiritual Being belonging to the world of Mars.
> He acquired thereby a strongly aggressive nature, but on the other hand
> also a wonderful gift of speech; for Mars Beings prepare from out of the
> cosmos all that belongs to speech and language and place it into the
> karma of human beings. Wherever artistic skill and fluency in speech
> show themselves in the karma of a human being, these are to be traced to
> the fact that his karmic experiences have brought him into the vicinity
> of Mars Beings.
> "The individuality of whom I am speaking had been in the company of one
> particular Mars Being a Being who now began to interest me
> intensely when I had recognised him in connection with this soul. The
> individuality himself appeared again on earth in the 18th century, as
> Voltaire. Thus Voltaire bore within him from his earlier earth-life the
> learning of the schools of Northern Africa and of Spain, elaborated and
> transformed through the fact that the shaping of his karma had taken
> place with the help of this particular Mars Being.
> "When you consider Voltaire's great gift of language and on the other
> hand his instability in many things, when you consider his writings, not
> so much their content as his manner and habit of working, you will come
> to understand how it all follows quite naturally from the karmic
> influences I have described. And when we observe how Voltaire comes over
> from his earlier earth-life with his aggressiveness, his fluency of
> language, his power of satire, his only partially concealed lack of
> integrity, yet at the same time his genuine and ardent enthusiasm for
> truth when we study all this in connection, first, with his former
> incarnation and then with his association with the Mars Being, the
> personality of Voltaire and still more from an occult point of view
> this. Mars Being, will begin to be of great interest to us.
> "It was my task at one time to follow this Mars Being and through this
> Being certain events on earth received great illumination. We meet in
> history with the remarkable figure of Ignatius Loyola, the founder of
> the Society of Jesus. Ignatius Loyola was, to begin with, a soldier. He
> was stricken with a severe illness and in the course of it was inwardly
> impelled to carry out all kinds of soul-exercises which were the means
> of filling him with such spiritual strength that he became able to set
> himself the task of rescuing the old Catholic Christianity from the
> spread of Evangelicalism. And thanks to the forces he had acquired
> through having a wounded leg that is the interesting point
> he succeeded in founding the Order of the Jesuits, which introduces
> occult exercises of the will in a most powerful manner into practical
> religious life. What we may think of this from other points of view is
> not here our concern. Ignatius Loyola, in establishing the Jesuit Order,
> sought to represent the cause of Jesus on earth on a grand scale, in a
> purely material way, through the training of the will.
> "Anyone who studies the remarkable life of Ignatius Loyola cannot fail
> to conceive a certain admiration for it. And now if we pursue the matter
> further with the occult insight of Intuition, we come to something very
> "Ignatius Loyola was the means of starting the Jesuit Order which has
> done more than anything else to bring Christianity right down into the
> earthly, material life, accompanied, however, with a strong spiritual
> power. The Jesuit Order has one rule which goes altogether against the
> grain in men of the present age but which, notwithstanding, has
> contributed more to its effectiveness than any other factor. Besides the
> usual monastic vows, besides the exercises, besides everything else that
> a candidate has to undergo before he can become a priest, the Order of
> the Jesuits has in addition this rule, namely that there shall be
> unconditional subjection to the command of the Pope of Rome. Whatever
> the Pope orders to be done, it is never asked in the Jesuit Order what
> opinions there may be about it. It is simply carried out because the
> Jesuits are convinced that higher things of the Spirit make themselves
> known through the Pope and that it behoves them, in unconditional
> obedience to Rome, to carry out the commands of this higher authority. A
> doubtful and precarious rule: nevertheless it implies a great
> selflessness that is present in Jesuitism and again signifies a
> tremendous increase of strength, for everything a man does with intense
> energy, putting forth all his force and acting not on his own authority
> nor out of emotion everything a man does in this way gives him
> extraordinary strength. It is a strength that moves, so to speak, in the
> lower clouds of material existence, but it is none the less a spiritual
> force. It is in truth a remarkable phenomenon.
> "And now, if we follow up these extraordinarily strange and imposing
> facts, we come to discover that the same Mars Genius who plays a part in
> the life of Voltaire, accompanied the life of Ignatius Loyola from the
> moment when he passed through the gate of death. The soul of Ignatius
> Loyola was perpetually under the supersensible influence of this Mars
> "As soon as Ignatius Loyola had passed through death, things were
> immediately quite different for him than they are for other men. Other
> men do not at once lay aside the etheric body at death but only a few
> days later and have a brief retrospective vision of the past earth-life
> before entering upon the journey through the soul-world. In the case of
> Ignatius Loyola this retrospective vision lasted for a very long time.
> And by reason of the special kind of exercises that had been working in
> his soul, a close and intimate connection was able to be established
> between the soul of Ignatius Loyola and the Mars Genius. For a strong
> and active affinity, an elective affinity so to speak, existed between
> this Mars Genius and all that had gone on in the soul of the sick
> soldier, who through the injury to his foot had been forced to take to
> his bed and from being a soldier had become a man who could not use his
> leg. All these circumstances had had a deep and powerful effect upon
> Loyola and when we look at the whole man it becomes clear. These
> circumstances led Ignatius Loyola into connection with the Mars Genius
> whom I had learned to know on another path of investigation. And what
> took shape through this connection made it possible for Ignatius Loyola
> to have this significant retrospect of his life which continued on and
> on for a long time, whereas in the ordinary way it lasts for only a few
> days after death. Loyola was able thereby to establish a retrospective
> connection as it were with those who came after him in the Jesuit Order.
> He remained united with his Order in the retrospect of his own life.
> "To this connection with its founder are due the forces that held the
> Order together, the forces that determined its strange and abnormal
> destiny and can be seen in its subjection in unquestioning obedience to
> the Pope in spite of the repeal of this rule by the Pope himself
> and in spite of the persecutions that went on! But on the other
> hand all the things that the Jesuits themselves accomplished in the
> world are to be traced to the singular connection of which I have
> "Now this example, if we follow it further, can shed a wonderful light
> over certain historical events and connections. After Ignatius Loyola's
> death, his soul remained always in the vicinity of the earth for
> one is near the earth so long as this retrospect lasts. Even if the
> retrospect is extended it cannot last many centuries for when it extends
> at all over any long period it is quite abnormal but abnormal
> things do constantly occur in the great world-connections. And
> comparatively soon after his earth-life was over, Ignatius Loyola
> appeared again in the soul of Emanuel Swedenborg.
> "We have here arrived at a very astounding fact, but it is also
> extremely illuminating. Think of the light it sheds upon history! The
> Order of the Jesuits continues in existence ... but the one who held it
> together up to a certain moment of time has become an entirely different
> person ... he appears in the individuality of Emanuel Swedenborg. He
> became the spirit of Emanuel Swedenborg, and since that time the Jesuit
> Order has been guided by altogether different impulses from those of its
> founder. We may frequently see in history how in the course of karma the
> founder of some undertaking or movement, or the persons who are deeply
> united with it, become separated from the movement they have founded and
> the movement passes over to quite other forces. So we learn how little
> meaning there is from a historical point of view to trace back the
> Jesuit Order to Ignatius Loyola. External history does so. Inner
> knowledge can never do so, for it sees how the individualities separate
> themselves from their movements.
> "In its external course, many a phenomenon in history is traced back to
> this or that founder. If, however, we come to know the later earth-life
> of the founder of some undertaking we may find that he has long ago
> separated himself from it. A great deal of what is set down as history
> simply loses all meaning when we are able and ready to face the occult
> facts that stand behind the evolution of karma.
> "That is one thing that emerges. The other is as follows.
> "The soul of Ignatius Loyola, now the soul of Swedenborg, entered an
> organism that had acquired its quite unusual soundness of head through
> the fact of the injury to the leg from which Loyola had suffered in the
> former life. And this soul that had remained all the time in the
> vicinity of the earth, was not able, to begin with, to come down fully
> and completely into the new earthly incarnation. The body remained, up
> till the fortieth year, a remarkably healthy body with a sound and
> healthy brain, a healthy etheric body and a healthy astral body. With
> these sound and healthy organisations Swedenborg grew to be one of the
> greatest scholars of his time; but it was not until his early forties,
> when he had been through the period of the Ego-development and was
> entering on the development of the Spirit-Self, that he came under the
> influence of the Mars Genius of whom I have spoken. During the first
> forty years of Swedenborg's life this influence had been somewhat
> suppressed; but now he came directly under it and from this time on it
> is the Mars Genius that speaks through Emanuel Swedenborg, in all the
> spiritual knowledge he has of the universe.
> "And so in Swedenborg we have a man of genius, who gives us brilliant
> and magnificent description of the lands of the Spirits, albeit in
> pictures that are somewhat questionable. Thus has the mighty spiritual
> will of Ignatius Loyola found transformation.
> "It is always the case that if we follow up the real and actual karmic
> connections, we discover, as a rule, something that startles and
> astounds us. The ingenious speculations one so often hears about
> repeated earth-lives are ingenious speculations and nothing more. When
> investigation is really exact, the result is usually very startling, for
> the evolution of karma that moves forward from earth-life to earth-life
> is hidden deep, deep down below all that is experienced and lived out by
> man between birth and death.
> "I wanted to give you this example in order that you may see how deeply
> may be hidden that which flows in karma from earth-life to earth-life.
> You have seen it in a personality who is well known to us all. Only by
> investigating these hidden factors shall we arrive at the true
> explanations. And if you now study the life of Emanuel Swedenborg,
> knowing the connections of which I have told you, you will find how
> things become clear to you, one after another."
> ( -- Rudolf Steiner: Karmic Relationships: Esoteric Studies - Volume
> VIII, V
> > , London, 24th August, 1924, GA 240)
> There's a lot more about Loyola and Swedenborg in this lecture, which
> should be read in its entirety. This may also be excellent stuff for our
> Beloved Sister to sink her cynical teeth into, because it represents a
> superb example of the transition taking place from the closing of the
> Middle Ages until the modern age had matured into the 19th century. And
> may all the saints bless her precious soul and bring her along when they
> come marchin' in....
> --- In email@example.com, "ted.wrinch"
> <ted.wrinch@> wrote:
> > I am coming to the end of Building Stones for an Understanding of the
> Mystery of Golgotha and there's a fascinating disquisition on the
> significance of Emanuel Swedenbourg's clairvoyance for our age. Steiner
> points out that, like Roman emperor Julian the apostate before him,
> Swedenbourg wanted to bring to people's attention again the spiritual
> significance of the sun. Roger the rat hates this concept, calling it
> 'pagan' and 'unchristian' (about which concepts he knows very little and
> is characteristically hypocritical about what he does know). I found the
> following Swedenbourg quotes on the sun:
> > "There are two worlds, the spiritual and the natural; and the
> spiritual world derives nothing from the natural world, nor the natural
> world from the spiritual world. They are altogether distinct, and
> communicate only by correspondences."
> > [this is a puzzling quote. From Steiner's description Swedenbourg
> holds more to a spiritual monism, whereby the natural/physical derives
> from the spiritual].
> > "There are two suns by which all things were created from the Lord,
> the sun of the spiritual world and the sun of the natural world. All
> things were created from the Lord by the sun of the spiritual world, but
> not by the sun of the natural world; for the latter is far below the
> former, and in a middle distance. The spiritual world is above and the
> natural world beneath it; and the sun of the natural world was created
> to act as a medium or substitute."
> > "Spiritual things cannot proceed from any other source than from love;
> and love cannot proceed from any other source than from Jehovah God, who
> is love itself. The sun of the spiritual world therefore, from which all
> spiritual things issue as from their fountain, is pure love, proceeding
> from Jehovah God, who is in the midst of it. That sun itself is not God,
> but is from God, and is the proximate sphere about Him from Him."
> > "Through this sun the universe was created by Jehovah God. By the
> universe all the worlds in one complex are understood, which are as many
> as the stars in the expanse of our heaven."
> > "The center and expanse of nature are derived from the centre and
> expanse of life, and not the contrary. Above the angelic heaven there is
> a sun, which is pure love, of a fiery appearance like the sun of the
> world. From the heat proceeding from that sun angels and men derive will
> and love; and from its light, understanding and wisdom. All things
> derived from that sun are called spiritual; and all things proceeding
> from the world's sun are containments or receptacles of life, and are
> called natural."
> > "The expanse of the centre of life is called the spiritual world,
> which subsists from its sun; and the expanse of the centre of nature is
> called the natural world, which subsists from its sun."
> > "Now, as spaces and times cannot be predicated of love and wisdom, but
> instead of them states are predicated, it follows that the expanse
> around the sun of the angelic heaven is not an extense; and yet it is in
> the extense of the natural sun, and is present there with all living
> subjects according to their reception; and their reception is according
> to their forms and states. The fire of the sun of the world is derived
> from the sun of the angelic heaven; which is not fire, but the Divine
> love proximately proceeding from God, who is in the midst of it. Love in
> its essence is spiritual fire; hence fire in the Word, or Holy
> Scripture, according to its spiritual sense, signifies love. This is the
> reason why priests, when officiating in the temple, pray that heavenly
> fire may fill the hearts of those who worship; by which they mean
> heavenly love."
> > "The sun of the natural world is pure fire, and therefore dead; and
> since nature derives its origin from that sun, it also is dead. Creation
> itself cannot in the least be ascribed to the sun of the natural world,
> but all to the sun of the spiritual world, because the sun of the
> natural world is wholly dead; but the sun of the spiritual world is
> alive, being the first proceeding of the Divine love and the Divine
> wisdom; and what is dead does not act from itself, but is acted on.
> Therefore to ascribe to it anything of creation would be like ascribing
> the work of the artificer to the instrument with which the hand of the
> artificer operates . . . The actuality of the sun of the natural world
> is not from itself, but from the living power proceeding from the sun of
> the spiritual world. If therefore the living power of the latter sun
> were withdrawn or taken away the former sun would perish. Hence it is
> that the worship of the sun is the lowest of all kinds of worship of a
> God; for it is as dead as the sun itself. And therefore in the Word it
> is called an abomination."
> > From "A Compendium of the Theological Writings of Emanuel
> Swedenborg,", edited by SAMUEL WARREN, 700 pages (!).
> > T.
> > Ted Wrinch