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Next Chapter: The Gospels

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  • DRStarman2001@aol.com
    The Gospels THE ACCOUNTS of the “Life of Jesus” which can be submitted to historical examination are contained in the Gospels. All that does not come from
    Message 1 of 3 , Dec 31, 2002
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      The Gospels

      THE ACCOUNTS of the “Life of Jesus” which can be submitted to historical examination are contained in the Gospels. All that does not come from this source might, in the opinion of one of those who are considered the greatest historical authorities on the subject, Harnack, (see Note 62a) be “easily written on a quarto page.” But what kind of documents are these Gospels? The fourth, that of John, differs so much from the others that those who believe themselves obliged to follow the path of historical research in order to study the subject come to the conclusion: “If John possesses the genuine tradition about the life of Jesus, that of the first three Evangelists (the Synoptists) is untenable; if the Synoptists are right, the fourth Gospel must be rejected as a historical source.” (Otto Schmidel, Die Hauptprobleme der Leben Jesu-Forschung, Principal Problems of Research into the Life of Jesus, p. 15.) This is a statement made from the standpoint of the historical investigator. In the present work, where we are dealing with the mystical content of the Gospels, such a point of view is neither to be accepted nor rejected. But attention must certainly be drawn to such an opinion as the following: “Measured by the standard of consistency, inspiration, and completeness, these writings leave very much to be desired; even when measured by the ordinary human standard they suffer from many imperfections.” This is the opinion of a Christian theologian (Harnack in Wesen des Christentums, The Nature of Christianity). If one agrees that the Gospels have a mystical origin one finds that apparent contradictions can be explained without difficulty, and one also discovers harmony between the fourth Gospel and the other three. None of these writings are meant to be mere historical tradition in the ordinary sense of the word. They do not profess to give a historical biography (see Note in Chapter 6). What they intended to give was already foreshadowed in the traditions of the Mysteries, as the typical life of the Son of God. It was these traditions which were drawn upon, not history. Now it was only natural that these traditions should not be in literal agreement in every Mystery center. Nevertheless the agreement was so close that the Buddhists narrated the life of their divine man in almost the same way as the Evangelists narrated the life of Christ. But naturally there were differences. We need only assume that the four Evangelists drew from four different Mystery traditions. It is evidence of the towering personality of Jesus that in four writers belonging to different traditions, he awakened the belief that he so perfectly corresponded with their type of an initiate that they were able to describe him as one who lived the typical life marked out in their Mysteries. Each of them described his life according to his own Mystery traditions. And if the narratives of the first three Evangelists (the Synoptists) resemble each other, it proves nothing more than that they drew upon similar Mystery traditions. The fourth Evangelist saturated his Gospel with ideas in many respects reminiscent of the religious philosopher Philo (see Note in Chapter 4). This simply proves that he was rooted in the same mystical tradition as was Philo. — In the Gospels one finds various elements. First, facts are related which appear to lay claim to being historical. Second, parables exist in which the narrative form is used only to portray a deeper truth. And third, teachings meant to be taken as the content of the Christian conception of life, are included. In John's Gospel no actual parable is present. The source from which he drew was a mystical school which believed parables to be unnecessary. — The role of professedly historical facts and parables in the first three Gospels is clearly shown in the account of the cursing of the fig tree. In Mark 11:11–14 we read: “And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve. And on the morrow when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry: and seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it he found nothing but leaves; for the time of the figs was not yet. And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever.” In the corresponding passage in Luke's Gospel he relates a parable (Luke 13:6, 7): “He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard and he came and sought fruit thereon and found none. Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard, Behold these three years I come seeking fruit on this fig-tree, and find none; cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground?” This parable symbolizes the worthlessness of the old teaching, represented by the barren fig tree. What is meant metaphorically, Mark relates as an apparently historical fact. Therefore we may assume that, in general, facts related in the Gospels are not to be taken as only historical, or as if they were to hold good only in the world of the senses, but as mystical facts, as experiences recognizable only by spiritual vision, and which stem from various mystical traditions. If we admit this, the difference between the Gospel of John and the Synoptists ceases to exist. For mystical interpretation, historical research should not be taken into account. Even if one or the other Gospel were written a few decades earlier or later, to the mystic all of them are of equal historical worth, John's Gospel as well as the others.

         The “miracles” also do not present the least difficulty when interpreted mystically. They are supposed to break through the laws of nature. They do this only when they are considered as occurrences which are supposed to have taken place in the physical, transitory sphere in such a way that ordinary sense-perception could have seen through them without difficulty. But if they are experiences which can be seen through only at a higher level, the spiritual level of existence, then it is a matter of course that they cannot be grasped by the laws of physical nature.

         Thus it is first of all necessary to read the Gospels in the right way: then we shall know in what manner they speak of the Founder of Christianity. Their intention is to report in the style in which communications were made through the Mysteries. They narrate in the way a mystic would speak of an initiate. However, they give the initiation as the unique characteristic of one unique Being. And they make the salvation of humanity depend on the fact that men cleave to this uniquely initiated Being. What had come to the initiates was the “Kingdom of God.” This unique Being has brought the Kingdom to all who will cleave to him. What was formerly the personal concern of each individual has become the common concern of all those willing to acknowledge Jesus as their Lord.

         We can understand how this came about if we admit that the wisdom of the Mysteries was embedded in the religion of the Israelite people. Christianity arose out of Judaism. We need not be surprised therefore to find engrafted on Judaism together with Christianity, those Mystery-conceptions which we have seen to be the common property of Greek and Egyptian spiritual life. If we examine folk religions we find various ideas about the spiritual. If we trace back to the deeper wisdom of the priests, which in each case proves to be the spiritual nucleus of the differing folk religions, we find agreement everywhere. Plato is aware that he agrees with the priest-sages of Egypt as he sets forth the main content of Greek wisdom in his philosophical conception of the world. It is said that Pythagoras traveled to Egypt and India and was instructed by the sages in those countries. Thinkers who lived in the earlier days of Christianity found so much agreement between the philosophical teachings of Plato and the deeper meaning of Moses' writings that they called Plato the Moses of the Greek tongue. (see Note 63)

         Thus Mystery wisdom existed everywhere. In Judaism it acquired the form it had to assume if it was to become a world religion. — Judaism awaited the Messiah. It is not surprising that when the personality of a unique initiate appeared, the Jews could only conceive of him as being the Messiah. Indeed, this circumstance sheds light on the fact that what had been an individual concern in the Mysteries became the concern of a whole people. From the beginning the Jewish religion had been a religion of the people. The Jewish people regarded itself as one organism. Its Jao was the God of the whole people. If the Son of this God were to be born he must be the Redeemer of the whole people. The individual mystic was not permitted to be saved by himself; the whole people must share in the redemption. Thus it is rooted in the fundamental ideas of the Jewish religion that One is to die for all. (see Note 64) — And it is also certain that there were Mysteries in Judaism which could be brought into the religion of the people, out of the dimness of a secret cult. A fully developed mysticism existed side by side with the priestly wisdom connected with the outer formulas of the Pharisees. This secret Mystery wisdom is described in the same way among the Jews as it is elsewhere. One day when an initiate was speaking of it, his hearers sensed the secret meaning of his words and said, Old man, what hast thou done? O that thou hadst kept silence! Thou thinkest to navigate the boundless ocean without sail or mast. This what thou art attempting. Wilt thou fly upwards? Thou canst not. Wilt thou descend into the depths? An infinite abyss is yawning before thee. — The Kabbalists, from whom the above is taken, also speak of four rabbis. These four rabbis sought the secret path to the divine. The first died, the second lost his reason, the third caused tremendous desolation, and on!y the fourth, Rabbi Akiba, entered and returned in peace. (see Note 65)

          Thus we see that also in Judaism there was a soil in which an initiate of a unique kind could develop. He needed only say to himself: I will not let salvation be limited to a few chosen people. I will let all people participate in this salvation. He had to carry out into the world at large what the elect had experienced in the temples of the Mysteries. He had to be willing to take it upon himself, through his personality, in spirit, to be to his community what the cult of the Mysteries hitherto had been to those who took part in it. Indeed he could not at once give the experiences of the Mysteries to the whole community. Neither would he have wished to do so. But he wished to give to all the certainty of what in the Mysteries was perceived to be truth. He wished to cause the life which flowed in the Mysteries to flow through the further historical evolution of humanity. Thus he would raise mankind to a higher stage of existence. “Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet believe.” He wished to plant unshakably in human hearts, in the form of faith, the certainty that the divine really exists. A man who stands outside initiation and has this faith certainly will go further than one who is without it. It must have weighed on the heart of Jesus like a nightmare that among those standing outside there may have been many unable to find the way. He wished to lessen the gulf between those to be initiated and the “people.” Christianity was to be a means by which everyone could find the way. If anyone is not yet ready, at least he is not cut off from the possibility of sharing, to a certain degree unconsciously, in the stream flowing through the Mysteries. “The Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Even those who cannot yet participate in initiation may enjoy some of the fruits of the Mysteries. Henceforth the Kingdom of God is not dependent on “external observances”: “Neither shall they say Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” With Jesus the point in question was not so much how far this or that person advanced in the kingdom of the spirit, as that all should be convinced that such a spiritual kingdom exists. “In this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.” That is, have faith in the divine; the time will come when you will find it.

      1. Robert Green Ingersoll (1833–1899), was an Illinois lawyer, a colonel in the Civil War, attorney general of Illinois, and a nationally-known political speaker. “His public addresses attacking the Bible and Christianity destroyed his political career, and his reputation as a speaker was based on his brilliant oratory rather than clear logic.” Ingersoll's writings and lectures were published posthumously in 12 volumes, New York, 1902.


      1a. Charles Robert Darwin (1809–1882), English naturalist, whose voyage on the Beagle to the Southern Seas, recorded in his Journal of a Naturalist (1837) prepared the way for his famous work On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Presentation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life, published November 24, 1859. Next in importance among his books, The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication, appeared in 1868. The Descent of Man, published in 1871, dealt with “the origin of man and his history” in the light of The Origin of the Species.

      Ernst Heinrich Haeckel (1834–1919), German biologist, originally a physician in Berlin, became Privatdozent at Jena, afterward extraordinary professor of comparative anatomy, later professor of zoology, a chair established for him at Jena. This position he occupied for 43 years with intervals for zoological travels to various parts of the world. When Darwin's Origin of the Species appeared in 1859, Haeckel was deeply influenced by it, so that he became “the apostle of Darwinism in Germany.” Among his famous books were General Morphology (1866), Natural History of Creation (1867) and Die Weltraetsel (1899), English title, The Riddle of the Universe (1901). By his 60th birthday he had published 42 works of some 13,000 pages, plus many monographs. Rudolf Steiner knew Ernest Haeckel personally, and in his autobiography, Chapter 15, Steiner recorded a very perceptive impression of the great scientist.


      1b. Sir Charles Lyell (1797–1875), British geologist, was the author of the famous Principles of Geology, An Attempt to Explain the Former Changes of the Earth's Surface by Reference to Causes Now in Operation (Vol. 1, 1830; Vol. II, 1832). His Elements of Geology and his Antiquity of Man appeared in 1838 and 1863 respectively. His life-work, which included journeys to the United States and Canada, the Scandinavian countries, Sicily, Madiera, Teneriffe and elsewhere, resulted in the advancement of modern geology. On the occasion of the observance of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Lyell, Rudolf Steiner wrote an appreciative article on his work which was published in Das Magazin für Litteratur, Berlin, November 27, 1897. Steiner also made a number of references to Lyell's work in his lectures (1900–1924).


      2. Aeschylus was acquitted by the Areopagus on a charge of revealing the Eleusinian Mysteries. When charged with betraying the Mysteries, he replied, “I said the first thing which occurred to me.” Cf. Aristotle, Ethica Nicomachea III, 1. Clement of Alexandria, Stromata II, 14: “Aeschylus, who divulged the Mysteries on the stage, was acquitted when being tried in the Areopagus on his showing that he had not been initiated.”


      3. Goethe, Faust, Part I, 3456–3458:
      Feeling is all in all;
      Name is but sound and smoke,
      Beclouding Heaven's glow.
         —Priest translation, 1941, p. 101



      4.
      Sophocles, Fragment 719.
      5.
      Plutarch, Moralia, De E apud Delphos, 392 A–E. (The E at Delphi, 17 and 18.)
      6.
      Plutarch, Moralia, De defectu oraculorum, 417 C. (The Obsolescence of Oracles, 14.)
      7.
      Cicero, De natura Deorum I, 119.
      8.
      Xenophanes, Elegaic Poems 14, 15.
      9.
      Xenophanes, Elegaic Poems (On Nature) 23.
      10.
      Plato, Phaedo, 69 C.
      11.
      The anonymous epigram reads: “Do not be in too great a hurry to get to the end of Heraclitus the Ephesian's book: the path is hard to travel. Obscurity is there, and darkness devoid of light. But if an initiate be your guide, the path shines brighter than sunlight.” Anth. Pal. Book IX, 540 (Cf. also Diogenes Laertius IX, 16).
      12.
      “Heraclitus lays down his book ceremonially in the temple of Artemis. So some people say, he has purposely written it obscurely, so that only the able would approach it.” (Cf. Kranz: Vorsokratische Denker, p. 84.)
      13.
      Heraclitus, Fragments 40, 41. Cf. Note 5, above.
      14.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 78.
      15.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 81.
      16.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 127.
      17.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 104, 52.
      18.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 56 (Cf. 45).
      19.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 67.
      20.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 79.
      21.
      Philo of Alexandria, De Migratione Abrahami, The Migration of Abraham, 89. (see Note 46, below)
      22.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 44.
      23.
      Heraclitus, Fragment 137.
      24.
      Empedocles, Fragments 11, 12, 15, translated by John Burnet in his Early Greek Philosophy, Adam & Charles Black, London, 1952.
      25.
      Empedocles, Fragment 112
      26.
      Plato, Phaedo, 69 C.
      27.
      Pindar, Fragment 137
      28.
      Aristotle, Metaphysica A, Book I, Chapter 5.
      29.
      Gregory of Nyssa (c 331–c 396), One of the four great Fathers of the Eastern Church, in Oratio catechetica magna, Chapter 10, modern edition edited by Krabinger, Munich, 1838.
      30.
      Plato, Epistle VII, 341 C.
      31.
      Plato, Phaedo, 58 E.
      32.
      Plato, Phaedo, 64 A.
      33.
      Plato, Phaedo, 64 D.
      34.
      Plato, Phaedo, 65 B.
      35.
      Plato, Phaedo, 66 A, 67 D, 67 E.
      36.
      Plato, Phaedo, 68 C.
      37.
      Plato, Phaedo, 79 D, 80 B, 81 A.
      38.
      Plato, Phaedo, 106 B.
      39.
      Plato, Timaeus, 27 C.
      40.
      Plato, Timaeus, 48 D.
      41.
      Plato, Timaeus, 22 C, 22 D.
      42.
      Plato, Timaeus, 28 C.
      43.
      Plato, Timaeus, 36 — “... like a great cross  
       .” Here Plato refers to the Greek letter &Chi, “Chi.”
      44.
      Plato, Cratylus 400 BC: “... some say it (the body) is the tomb of the soul, their notion being that the soul is buried in the present life.” The Greek words for “body” and “tomb” suggest a mystical similarity between the two. This was a part of the Orphic doctrine.
      45.
      Plato, Timaeus, 92 C.
      46.
      Philo of Alexandria, De Profugis, I, 562. Philo of otherwise known as Philo Judaeus, a Jewish philosopher, was born at Alexandria in Egypt, c. 10 B.C., where he spent most of his life. In the year 40 A.D., he headed a Jewish embassy to Rome to petition the Emperor Gaius to refrain from requiring homage from the Jews as a divinity. Eusebius and other Church Fathers advanced a tradition that in Rome Philo met St. Peter, but this is not confirmed. Philo was the most important representative of Hellenistic Judaism, and his many writings extant are brilliant expositions of the Mosaic law and the Jewish religion.
      47.
      Philo, Legum allegoriarum, Allegorical Interpretation, Lib. I, 19. (Includes commentary on Genesis 2:1–17) — “Book is Moses' name for the Logos of God in which has been inscribed and engraved the formation of the world.”
      48.
      Philo, De confusione linguarum, The Confusion of Tongues, 63. A part of Philo's Allegories of the Sacred Laws, though published under a separate title. The work contains a commentary on Genesis 11:1–9
      49.
      Philo, De poseritate, Caini, The Posterity and Exile of Cain, 101, 102. A part of Philo's Allegories of the Sacred Laws, this work includes commentary on Genesis 4:16–25.
      50.
      Philo, De migratione Abrahami, The Migration of Abraham, 34, 35. Commentary on Genesis 12:1–6.
      51.
      Philo, Quod a Deo mittantur somnia, On Dreams, that they are sent by God, II, 232. A commentary on the two dreams of Jacob, Genesis 28 and 29, and Book II refers to dreams of Joseph, the chief butler, the chief baker, and Pharaoh, Genesis 37, 40, 41.
      52.
      Philo, Legum allegoriarum, Allegorical Interpretation, III, 29. See Note 47, above.
      53.
      Hippolytus, born probably 2nd half of 2nd century A.D. in Rome; according to legend he was a Roman soldier converted by St. Lawrence. Died c. 326 in Rome. Steiner's reference is to Hippolytus' The Refutation of All Heresies, Book V, ch. 3. Otherwise known as the Philosophumena, Book I was long printed with the works of Origen, Books 2 and 3 have been lost, and Books 4 through 10 were found in ms. form at Mount Athos by a Greek scholar in 1842.
      54.
      Sallust the Platonist, De Diis et mundo, Concerning Gods and the Universe, Par. III. Translated by A. D. Nock, Cambridge University Press, 1926.
      55.
      Plotinus, 5th Ennead, The Divine Mind, 8th Tractate, On Intellectual Beauty, 6. Plotinus (204–269 A.D.) was born of Roman parents in Egypt. Studied under Ammonius Saccas at Alexandria, attempted to go to the East to study philosophy there, but finally reached Rome where he established himself as a teacher of philosophy. He attracted a circle of distinguished pupils, including the Emperor Gallienus and his wife. Not long before his death, Plotinus collected his writings and arranged them in a series of 6 Enneads, later edited by his famous pupil, Porphyry. The Enneads “are the most authoritative exposition of Neoplatonism.”
      56.
      Plato, Phaedrus, 229 D, E, 230 A.
      57.
      Empedocles, Fragment 26.
      58.
      Empedocles, Fragment 20.
      59.
      Homer, Odyssey, Book I, 1–5.
      60.
      The Egyptian Book of the Dead, Chapter 125, 19–22. Papyrus of NU.
      61.
      Augustine, St., one of the four great Fathers of the Latin Church, born 354 in Tagaste, Numidia, and died as Bishop of Hippo during the siege of that city by the Vandals in 430. Steiner's reference is to Augustine's work, Against the Epistle of Manichaeus called Fundamental, par. 6.
      62.
      The Christmas Antiphon to which Steiner refers is found in the Breviarium Romanum, and appears just before the end of the Christmas section, In Nativitate Domini, headed Ad Magnificat Antiphona:

      Hodie Christus natus est; hodie Salvator apparuit:
      hodie in terra canunt Angeli, laetantur Archangeli:
      hodie exultant justi, dicentes: Gloria in excelsis
      Deo, alleluia.



      62a.
      Adolf Harnack (1851–1930), well-known German professor of theology, editor of Works of the Apostolic Fathers (1877), author of essays on New Testament literature and history, and the Lehrbuch der Dogmengeschichte, History of Dogma, 1885 (English transl. 7 vols. 1894–99). In 1892 he published an important controversial work on the Apostles' Creed, in 1893 a history of early Christianity, in 1900 a very popular work published in English translation as What is Christianity, (referred to by Rudolf Steiner in this book), and a number ot other works, some translated into English, among them being Luke the Physician (1907) and The Sayings of Jesus (1908). Rudolf Steiner frequently referred to the work of Harnack in his lectures.
      63.
      Numenius of Apameia in Syria (latter half 2nd century AD), a Neo-Pythagorean philosopher and forerunner of the Neo-Platonists, is one of those reputed to have spoken to this effect, calling Plato “an Atticizing Moses.”
      64.
      John 11:50 — “Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.”
      65.
      The Talmud, Hagigah, Chapter II, 14 b: “Our Rabbis taught: Four men entered the Garden (the Paradise) (or, ascended to heaven;) ... the first of them cast a look and died ... The second looked and became demented ... The third mutilated the shoots. Rabbi Akiba returned unscathed.” (This translation is from The Soncino Talmud, published by The Soncino Press Ltd., London, and is used by permission of that organization through S. M. Bloch, Director.)

    • Lutz Baar
      To me, these are the main parts of the Gospel chapter: Thus it is first of all necessary to read the Gospels in the right way: then we shall know in what
      Message 2 of 3 , Jan 1, 2003
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        To me, these are the main parts of the "Gospel" chapter:

        "Thus it is first of all necessary to read the Gospels in the right way: then we shall know in what manner they speak of the Founder of Christianity. Their intention is to report in the style in which communications were made through the Mysteries. They narrate in the way a mystic would speak of an initiate. However, they give the initiation as the unique characteristic of one unique Being. And they make the salvation of humanity depend on the fact that men cleave to this uniquely initiated Being. What had come to the initiates was the “Kingdom of God.” This unique Being has brought the Kingdom to all who will cleave to him. What was formerly the personal concern of each individual has become the common concern of all those willing to acknowledge Jesus as their Lord." 

        "He wished to plant unshakably in human hearts, in the form of faith, the certainty that the divine really exists. A man who stands outside initiation and has this faith certainly will go further than one who is without it. It must have weighed on the heart of Jesus like a nightmare that among those standing outside there may have been many unable to find the way. He wished to lessen the gulf between those to be initiated and the “people.” Christianity was to be a means by which everyone could find the way. If anyone is not yet ready, at least he is not cut off from the possibility of sharing, to a certain degree unconsciously, in the stream flowing through the Mysteries."
         
         
        A side-though arises to me. It is about paralellities to the foundation of the Anthroposophical Society. "What was formerly the personal concern of each individual has become the common concern of all those willing..."
         
        There have been questions about if the members are members in the society founded at Christmas 1923 (Anthroposophical Society) or in the society of the so called "General Anthroposophical Society". To me, this looked like a good reason to look over the idea of such a society "of common concern". However, a few days ago a meeting at Dornach resulted in a simple switch carried out of the leaderboard: The members of the Vorstand of the General Anthroposophical Society were individually elected into the Vorstand of the Anthroposophical society.
         
        Business as usual?
         
        Lutz
      • DRStarman2001@aol.com
        ... *******So that even those not ready for initiation are being helped along by their simple Christian faith. We who are pursuing initiation should keep this
        Message 3 of 3 , Jan 1, 2003
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          info@... writes:
          To me, these are the main parts of the "Gospel" chapter:
          "Thus it is first of all necessary to read the Gospels in the right way: then we shall know in what manner they speak of the Founder of Christianity. Their intention is to report in the style in which communications were made through the Mysteries. They narrate in the way a mystic would speak of an initiate. However, they give the initiation as the unique characteristic of one unique Being. And they make the salvation of humanity depend on the fact that men cleave to this uniquely initiated Being. What had come to the initiates was the “Kingdom of God.” This unique Being has brought the Kingdom to all who will cleave to him. What was formerly the personal concern of each individual has become the common concern of all those willing to acknowledge Jesus as their Lord."
          "He wished to plant unshakably in human hearts, in the form of faith, the certainty that the divine really exists. A man who stands outside initiation and has this faith certainly will go further than one who is without it. It must have weighed on the heart of Jesus like a nightmare that among those standing outside there may have been many unable to find the way. He wished to lessen the gulf between those to be initiated and the “people.” Christianity was to be a means by which everyone could find the way. If anyone is not yet ready, at least he is not cut off from the possibility of sharing, to a certain degree unconsciously, in the stream flowing through the Mysteries."


          *******So that even those not ready for initiation are being helped along by their simple Christian faith. We who are pursuing initiation should keep this in mind when dealing with people who are not ready for it, but instead are fixed in this or that Christian religion.


          A side-though arises to me. It is about paralellities to the foundation of the Anthroposophical Society. "What was formerly the personal concern of each individual has become the common concern of all those willing..." 
          There have been questions about if the members are members in the society founded at Christmas 1923 (Anthroposophical Society) or in the society of the so called "General Anthroposophical Society". To me, this looked like a good reason to look over the idea of such a society "of common concern". However, a few days ago a meeting at Dornach resulted in a simple switch carried out of the leaderboard: The members of the Vorstand of the General Anthroposophical Society were individually elected into the Vorstand of the Anthroposophical society.


          *******That's not a very good representation of what just happened: it makes me wonder if you are a member of the Society. For those who are not, what he's referring to is that the Anthroposophical Society was founded in 1923 but a different organization was in charge of the society's building which is its headquarters, the Goetheanum in Switzerland. Along the way over the past eighty years, there was some confusion between the two organizations legally. It all has to do with minor legal issues, but there are a lot of people who would like to be big shots in the organization, mainly disgruntled anthroposophists who regard their insights as superior to the people presently elected to be in charge, and these folks have been harping on these trivial legal points to try to call an extraordinary general membership meeting allegedly for the purpose of resolving the legal issues, but actually to try to do who knows wha (because almost anything could be done at an extraordinary general membership meeting). It's an old tactic.

             The leadership of the society, which is called the "Vorstand", ignored this stuff for quite some time, then formed a committee to investigate the legal issues and recommend how to resolve them, with the result that they have been advertising a special meeting for many months now which was just held at Christmas time, and which I believe any members could have attended, where they reincorporated the society in a way that resolves all the legal issues. Undoubtedly the people who have an an ulterior motive will still keep saying the same things, but that entire matter is actually now closed.

          Dr. Starman

          http://www.DrStarman.net
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