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63First Steps On The Path-1

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  • starmann77@aol.com
    Aug 21, 2000
      Grail Yoga

      The Western Path to Higher Knowledge: Initiation.
      A Commentary on Dr. Rudolf Steiner’s “Theosophy” and “Knowlege of the Higher
      Worlds And Its Attainment”.

      The first things required of one who would develop higher knowledge are
      spelled out by Rudolf Steiner in “The Path of Knowledge” (the last chapter of
      his book “Theosophy”) and described again at the beginning of his “Knowlege
      of the Higher Worlds And Its Attainment”. At the start of Knowlege of the
      Higher Worlds, in fact, Dr. Steiner says that all of the essentials of the
      Path are included in that brief yet profound last chapter of Theosophy. If
      one examines this, one finds several qualities which anyone must develop
      first and foremost are stated in The Path of Knowledge, which, in slightly
      different language, are repeated in all the lectures Dr. Steiner gave on
      developing higher perception.

      The beings and events described in Occult Science, Theosophy, etc., are
      thought pictures which one can understand and use with normal consciousness,
      just by accepting what is described as possible and testing it out with
      unprejudiced logic. But they remain pictures of a world one cannot see
      directly. In order to SEE these things yourself, the Path of occult training
      must be walked. This Way or Path may be called a Western form of Yoga, or the
      meditative Way to re-join the Self consciously to the Divine (“Yoga” meaning
      to yoke or join, as “religion” comes from “re ligare”, to “re-join”).


      The first steps on the path are the most important. One’s practice of them
      must continue for life; for, along with the attempts to take these steps, the
      inner discipline is required to begin a daily review of oneself, a daily
      “meeting self”.

      This is how one first learns to “meditate”---to “be between”---the “self
      that is” and the “self that is becoming”.

      What is meditation?

      It is the concentration, through will, of ordinary thinking and feeling
      regularly (even five minutes a day) into new “organs” of the spirit, through
      which the hidden worlds become perceptible. This is the “secret” of occult
      science---that clairvoyance is evolved from everyday thinking and feeling and
      daily actions.

      There are shortcuts to occult power, but beware! Only the true spiritual
      path keeps one safe. Observe unfortunates, and imitate them not (to
      paraphrase Pythagoras’ “Golden Verses”). Power without wisdom destroys. Only
      the slow, gradual, step-by-step growth of spiritual organs will result in
      healthy ones, without which a man gaining access to higher worlds will suffer
      delusions and moral decay. In old times, those steps (“graduale”) became
      known as the Grail.


      The path begins with 4 efforts at concentration; and the additional
      effort of the concentrating itself. Anything---an object, idea, phrase,
      picture---can be a subject for concentration; whatever works for you. The
      important thing is to develop the ability to concentrate itself, not what you
      use---at least at first.
      But in addition, 4 areas require specific concentration work:

      1. Objectivity about self and surroundings; gained by cultivating the
      devotion to truth and appreciation of the value of all things, even those
      which seem most worthy of criticism.
      2.“Equanimity”, balance in pleasure and pain. One must not indulge in the
      extremes of these, but one must feel them and yet be detached from them. We
      must not at all reduce our ability to feel---no, we must feel ever more
      deeply and profoundly---but we must hold back from letting our feelings move
      us immediately to any judgement or action.
      3. Next, one’s thinking must begin to become “regulated within itself”.
      Idea must link itself with idea only in the way required by the nature of the
      ideas themselves, rather than one’s preferences or prejudices.
      4. Finally, one’s actions in life must become likewise regulated according
      to the inner perception of the laws of the True and Good. One must do only
      what one has recognized as the right thing to do.
      These have to do primarily with :
      1. Sensation (The Physical World)
      2. Unconscious Habits (Emotions)
      3. Thinking, and
      4. Will.
      Next time we’ll look at these in greater detail.

      Dr. Starman
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