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Steiner's Basic Books- Pt. 2

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  • DRStarman2001@aol.com
    Theosophy (1902) This was the first handbook of Anthroposophy ( Occult Science is the second), and, as such, it is packed . It is an outline of the first
    Message 1 of 3 , Jul 3, 2003
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      Theosophy (1902)

          This was the first "handbook" of Anthroposophy ("Occult Science"' is the second), and, as such, it is "packed". It is an outline of the first realms the "initiate" or spiritual scientist experiences; his own being, its earthly history (reincarnation), and what we experience between death and rebirth--and Steiner then gave hundreds of lectures over 7 years developing these enormous topics further. The "sketch" of these things in Theosophy which he then elaborated is, however, so designed that Steiner said that anyone who really read it could have given the lectures himself.
            In outline, Steiner describes man as being not just body and "psyche" ("soul" or "mind"), but a trinity of body, soul and spirit ; each of which is 1ikewise three-fold.(See Diagram #1.) 

           Whi1e he is alive on earth, the lowest level of the spirit is one with the highest of the soul, and the lowest part of the soul is a unity with the highest part of the body; thus man on earth is seen to be sevenfold. (See Diagram #2.) 

           The Ego or "I" stands in the middle, with three lower parts which it can transform into three higher ones; so if self-conscious man and the 3 parts he shares with the 3 kingdoms of nature (the animal, the plant and the mineral) are only considered, one can say man is a four-fold being.  ( See Diagram #3.) 

          The complex of ego, astral or sentient body, etheric body and physical body is the simplest way to think of man; the "I" works down into the 3 lower bodies- so that within them Spirit Se1f, Life Spirit, and Spirit Man are coming into being, making seven; and for more exact considerations even the subtle "layers" between spirit, soul and body must be taken into account, making nine parts in all. One of the first steps in Anthroposophy is forming clear ideas of each one of these. (See chapter one of Theosophy.)

          After this description of the true nature of man, Steiner affirms the reality of reincarnation and karma, and then tells what happens after death; this can be known through initiation, because in it one consciously goes through what we otherwise only have done to us by death. Two Sanskrit ideas are confirmed and used; "Kamaloca" or the soul-world, where we remain while being purged of all attachments to the body now laid aside, after which we enter the true spiritual world, "Devachan" or the "heaven-world". Steiner describes the seven regions of the soul world and of the spirit world. He then briefly speaks of the elemental spirits, the human aura, and in the deceptively simple last chapter tells how to gain this kind of knowledge. It was his practice to present the results of this "spiritual research" first, and then tell how to do that research, because, as already said, once some thing has been spiritual1y experienced and communicated through thoughts, these thoughts themselves have within them a power to awaken clairvoyance; simply to think clearly along with these thoughts is the first step.

      Dr. Starman
      http://www.DrStarman.net
    • Lutz Baar
      Hi Starman! You presented diagrams of nine and seven parts of Man. In The Education of the Child in the Light of Anthroposophy Steiner states TEN parts :
      Message 2 of 3 , Jul 8, 2003
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        Hi Starman!
         
        You presented diagrams of nine and seven "parts" of Man.
         
        In "The Education of the Child in the Light of Anthroposophy" Steiner states TEN "parts":
         
        "From what has been said, it is clear that we may speak of four members of man's nature: the Physical Body, the Etheric or Life-Body, the Astral or Sentient Body, and the Body of the Ego. The Sentient Soul, the Intellectual Soul, and the Spiritual Soul, and beyond these the still higher members of man's nature — Spirit-Self, Life-Self, Spirit-Man — appear in connection with these four members as products of transformation. Speaking of the vehicles of the qualities of man, it is in fact the first four members only which come into account."
         
        In the quote above we have a "BODY of the Ego". In your diagram of seven the Ego plays the main role, while in the diagram of nine the Ego or "I" is not playing any part at all!! How come?
         
        Regarding the "parts" you wrote: "One of the first steps in Anthroposophy is forming clear ideas of each one of these."
         
        How to do?
        Wondering,
        Lutz
         
         
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Thursday, July 03, 2003 2:44 PM
        Subject: [steiner] Steiner's Basic Books- Pt. 2

        Theosophy (1902)

            This was the first "handbook" of Anthroposophy ("Occult Science"' is the second), and, as such, it is "packed". It is an outline of the first realms the "initiate" or spiritual scientist experiences; his own being, its earthly history (reincarnation), and what we experience between death and rebirth--and Steiner then gave hundreds of lectures over 7 years developing these enormous topics further. The "sketch" of these things in Theosophy which he then elaborated is, however, so designed that Steiner said that anyone who really read it could have given the lectures himself.
              In outline, Steiner describes man as being not just body and "psyche" ("soul" or "mind"), but a trinity of body, soul and spirit ; each of which is 1ikewise three-fold.(See Diagram #1.) 

             Whi1e he is alive on earth, the lowest level of the spirit is one with the highest of the soul, and the lowest part of the soul is a unity with the highest part of the body; thus man on earth is seen to be sevenfold. (See Diagram #2.) 

             The Ego or "I" stands in the middle, with three lower parts which it can transform into three higher ones; so if self-conscious man and the 3 parts he shares with the 3 kingdoms of nature (the animal, the plant and the mineral) are only considered, one can say man is a four-fold being.  ( See Diagram #3.) 

            The complex of ego, astral or sentient body, etheric body and physical body is the simplest way to think of man; the "I" works down into the 3 lower bodies- so that within them Spirit Se1f, Life Spirit, and Spirit Man are coming into being, making seven; and for more exact considerations even the subtle "layers" between spirit, soul and body must be taken into account, making nine parts in all. One of the first steps in Anthroposophy is forming clear ideas of each one of these. (See chapter one of Theosophy.)

            After this description of the true nature of man, Steiner affirms the reality of reincarnation and karma, and then tells what happens after death; this can be known through initiation, because in it one consciously goes through what we otherwise only have done to us by death. Two Sanskrit ideas are confirmed and used; "Kamaloca" or the soul-world, where we remain while being purged of all attachments to the body now laid aside, after which we enter the true spiritual world, "Devachan" or the "heaven-world". Steiner describes the seven regions of the soul world and of the spirit world. He then briefly speaks of the elemental spirits, the human aura, and in the deceptively simple last chapter tells how to gain this kind of knowledge. It was his practice to present the results of this "spiritual research" first, and then tell how to do that research, because, as already said, once some thing has been spiritual1y experienced and communicated through thoughts, these thoughts themselves have with
        Dr. Starman
        http://www.DrStarman.net

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      • DRStarman2001@aol.com
        ... ******* The physical body is what can be perceived by our senses, while the life forces can at first only be perceived indirectly but later directly when
        Message 3 of 3 , Jul 8, 2003
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          info@... writes:
          Hi Starman!
          You presented diagrams of nine and seven "parts" of Man. 
          In "The Education of the Child in the Light of Anthroposophy" Steiner states TEN "parts": 
          "From what has been said, it is clear that we may speak of four members of man's nature: the Physical Body, the Etheric or Life-Body, the Astral or Sentient Body, and the Body of the Ego. The Sentient Soul, the Intellectual Soul, and the Spiritual Soul, and beyond these the still higher members of man's nature — Spirit-Self, Life-Self, Spirit-Man — appear in connection with these four members as products of transformation. Speaking of the vehicles of the qualities of man, it is in fact the first four members only which come into account."
          In the quote above we have a "BODY of the Ego". In your diagram of seven the Ego plays the main role, while in the diagram of nine the Ego or "I" is not playing any part at all!! How come?

          ******* The physical body is what can be perceived by our senses, while the life forces can at first only be perceived indirectly but later directly when the organ for perceiving them is developed; similarly, everything we call "soul" or inner experiences likewise is perceived differently when the organ for perceiving astral phenomena is developed. Thus Man is seen as composed of physical body, etheric body of life forces, and astral body, as are animals; we can sense each of these three in the kingdoms of nature and in ourselves.

              But we human beings have a uniquely human part which goes beyond these three lower bodies. This Steiner calls the body of the Ego or vehicle of the Ego; not the Ego itself, but its outer covering, so to speak. (He states that even the clairvoyant cannot truly see the ego of another, but only its covering.)

              As you then trace your own Ego's history, you find that it only began to live in the three lower bodies at a certain point. Before that time they were as nature prepared them for us, unaffected by our individual selves. But within the three lower bodies can be perceived parts of them that have been transformed since our Egos began incarnating in them. At first we worked unconsciously on the three lower bodies, and this work produced the three parts of the soul: sentient soul, intellectual soul, and consciousness soul.  These came into existence when we human beings were still being led by higher beings. Since we began consciously to work on the three lower bodies, the three parts of the spirit have come into existence, Spirit Self, Life Spirit and Spirit Man (Manas, Buddhi and Atma).

              So, by one way of looking at it, there are the 3 lower bodies, the vehicle of the Ego, and then the 3 parts of the soul and the 3 parts of the Spirit.

             But this is looking at the totality of the human being. As Steiner says at the end of the first chapter of Theosophy, it's a different matter when we are on earth, in the body, or whether we are not. While IN THE BODY, the highest part of the body (astral or sentient body) and the lowest part of the soul (sentient soul) are joined together, and so can be thought of as one. Likewise the highest part of the soul (the consciousness soul) is one with the lowest part of the spirit (Manas or Spirit Self). This gives a total of seven not including the vehicle of the Ego, which he places as a separate entity coming into existence in the intellectual soul and then truly being active in the consciousness soul. He concludes by saying that it can be thought of as the essential center of the soul, giving physical body, etheric body, and astral body below, Ego in the center, and Manas, Buddhi and Atma above: the sevenfold man of ancient religions.

             More detail can be found by reading the first chapter of the book "Theosophy", of which the enunciation of the principles of Man in "The Education of the Child"  is a repetition. The relation of the 'Ego' to the parts of the soul and spirit is a tricky matter that a first reading will easily pass by.

          Dr. Starman
          http://www.DrStarman.net
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