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Dream Consciousness

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  • rickbobbs
    Dear Folks; I d like to collect pertinent comments by Steiner on dream consciousness and its relation to clairvoyance. The following is from a lecture cycle
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 9, 2003
      Dear Folks;
      I'd like to collect pertinent comments by Steiner on
      dream consciousness and its relation to clairvoyance. The following
      is from a lecture cycle available at elib.com:


      "The conditions I have been describing are dream conditions, and
      they show us quite clearly that in dream consciousness man falls
      asunder; his ego consciousness, his unity of consciousness, does not
      remain intact, and his dream is in reality always a reflection, a
      symbolical reflection of what is going on inside his bodily nature.
      "For the disciple of occultism it is by no means merely a question
      of passing from ordinary waking consciousness to dream consciousness —
      — there would be nothing unusual in that, No, he must make the
      transition to a totally different condition of consciousness. By
      practising the exercises outlined in earlier lectures of this course —
      — through suppression, that is, of the intellect, the will and the
      memory —— he has to get free of himself and attain to a completely
      new consciousness.
      "Although, as I have said, this new consciousness is not a dream
      consciousness, yet if one has no knowledge of clairvoyant
      consciousness, dream consciousness can help one to come to a fairly
      good understanding of it. For we can approach it in the following
      manner. Suppose we ask ourselves: What is it within him that man
      perceives in dream? then we must answer: Whatever is painful or out
      of order. A moment's reflection will show us that ordinary normal
      conditions are not perceived by dream consciousness, If a man is
      perfectly healthy in his upper and middle man, if everything is in
      order there, then he sleeps a normal healthy sleep; one cannot in
      ordinary circumstances —— observe, I say advisedly, in ordinary
      circumstances —— expect that his peaceful sleep will be forcibly
      interrupted with dreams. Now the path that has to be taken by
      clairvoyant consciousness is one that leads through stages and
      conditions that are similar to those of dream consciousness. Only,
      these stages are attained instead by occult training, and it is
      actually the case that in clairvoyance man does not merely come to a
      knowledge of the ordinary external painful conditions of his inside,
      but succeeds in perceiving also its normal conditions, which usually
      disappear from our consciousness in peaceful sleep. The pupil in
      clairvoyance comes to a knowledge of these conditions. In other
      words, he learns to know his brain, his head man, by learning to
      perceive it inwardly. Similarly, he comes to know his middle man. In
      the same way as in certain dreams man perceives when asleep his head
      and middle man, so has the pupil in clairvoyance to attain in the
      course of his training to a knowledge of his middle and upper man".
      (9 June 1912, in: Man in the Light of Occultism, Theosophy and
      Philosophy, 1989, pp. 125-126)


      "THE attainment of occult knowledge —— it is necessary we should
      remind ourselves of the fact now and again —— is no child's play; and
      if anyone approaches it with the idea that it will offer him theories
      to which he can either remain indifferent or, if they are not so
      remote as all that, still theories that require no more than the
      intellect to grasp them, he will find he is very much mistaken.
      "We have been considering the human form —— to all appearances
      something quite external. And yet I have told you that it is this
      human form, as we have described it in its three members, which the
      student in occultism must take for his starting-point. He must —— in
      most cases —— begin with the feelings and impressions that come to
      him from a study of the human form, because in so doing he takes his
      start from something that is as independent as possible of the inner
      life.
      "There is as a matter of fact another possibility, and it is
      sometimes even desirable, not only for the theosophist, but also for
      the occultist, —— namely, to start from the inner life of soul. We
      are, however, then brought face to face with an almost insurmountable
      obstacle. As you know, we have in our inner man not only what was
      already present there when Earth evolution began, but throughout our
      incarnations upon Earth spiritual beings and forces have contributed
      all the time to its upbuilding and development. Ever since primeval
      times, Luciferic and Ahrimanic forces have had their part in all the
      work that has been done upon our inner man. If you take this into
      consideration —— and you must do so, for it is true —— then you will
      see that were we to take our start from the inner man, there would be
      some uncertainty as to whether we should get free of the Luciferic
      and Ahrimanic forces, or whether we should not rather remain
      entangled in their influences and these then find their way into our
      occult vision. Luciferic and Ahrimanic forces can easily penetrate
      into the soul without man's being aware of it. Many things that go to
      make up the content of our life of soul, —— we may think them to be
      exceedingly good, and yet they may not be so at all, so mixed up are
      they with the influences exerted upon us by Lucifer and Ahriman." (10
      June, 1912, in: Man in the Light of Occultism, Theosophy and
      Philosophy, 1989, pp. 142-143)

      Take care and give care, Rick
    • rickbobbs
      Dear Folks; The following is available at elib.com under the lecture cycle Spiritual Beings in the Heavenly Bodies and the Kingdoms of Nature , and occurs in
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 11, 2003
        Dear Folks;
        The following is available at elib.com under the lecture
        cycle 'Spiritual Beings in the Heavenly Bodies and the Kingdoms of
        Nature', and occurs in Chapter 2. It is a worthwhile caution Dr.
        Steiner gave while discussing and describing a consciousness that
        could awaken while the body was in a sleeping state. I think the
        recommendation could apply to many people in many states of mind...

        In every esoteric development it is specially important that
        everything should be so adjusted that two things that man has in
        ordinary life should not be lost — which he might however very easily
        lose in esoteric development if not rightly guided. If rightly guided
        he will not lose them. First, he should not lose the recollection of
        any of the events of his present incarnation, as ordinarily retained
        in his memory. The connection with memory must not be destroyed. This
        connection with memory means very much more in the sphere of
        occultism than it does in the sphere of ordinary life. In ordinary
        life we only understand by memory, the power of looking back and not
        losing consciousness of the important events of one's life. In
        occultism a right memory means that a man only values with his
        perceptions and feelings what he has already accomplished in the
        past, so that he applies no other value to himself or to his deeds
        than the past deeds themselves entitle. Let us understand this quite
        correctly, for this is extremely important. If a man in the course of
        his occult development were suddenly driven to say to himself "I am
        the reincarnation of this or the other spirit," — without there being
        any justification for it through any action of his — then his memory
        in an occult sense would be interrupted. An important principle in
        occult development is that of attributing no other merit to oneself,
        than what comes from one's actions in the physical world in the
        present incarnation. That is extremely important. Any other merit
        must only come on the basis of a higher development, which can only
        be attained if one first of all stands firmly on the ground that one
        esteems oneself for nothing but what one has accomplished in this
        incarnation. This is quite natural if we look at the matter
        objectively; for what we have accomplished in the present incarnation
        is also the result of earlier incarnations; it is that which Karma
        has, so far, made out of us. What Karma is still making of us we must
        first bring about; we must not add that to our value. In short, if we
        would set a right value on ourselves, we can only do so, at the
        beginning of esoteric development, if we ascribe merit only to what
        is inscribed in our memory as our past. That is the one element which
        we must preserve, if our ego is not to sleep while our astral body is
        awake.

        The second thing which we as men of the present day must not lose is
        the degree of conscience we possess in the external world. Here again
        is something which it is extremely important to observe. You must
        have often experienced that someone you know has gone through an
        occult development, and if it is not guided and conducted in the
        right way, you find that, in relation to conscience, your friend
        takes things much more lightly than he did before his occult
        training. His education, his social connection guided him before, so
        that he did this thing or that, or dared not do it. After beginning
        an occult development, many people begin to tell lies who never did
        so before, and as regards questions of conscience, they take things
        more lightly. We ought not to lose an iota of the conscience we
        possess. As regards memory, we must only value ourselves according to
        what we have already become; not according to any reliance on the
        future, or on what we are still going to do. As regards conscience,
        we must retain the same degree as we acquired in the ordinary
        physical world. If we retain these two elements in our consciousness:
        a healthy memory which does not deceive us into believing ourselves
        to be other than our actions prove us to be, and a conscience which
        does not allow us morally to take things more lightly than before, —
        indeed if possible we should take them more seriously — if we retain
        these two qualities, our ego will never be asleep when our astral
        body is awake.
      • rickbobbs
        Dear Folks; Here is one of the clearest and most concise statements I ve found, where Steiner describes dream consciousness, waking day- consciousness and the
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 25, 2003
          Dear Folks;
          Here is one of the clearest and most concise statements
          I've found, where Steiner describes dream consciousness, waking day-
          consciousness and the beginning of clairvoyant consciousness(which he
          here calls 'seeing consciousness)

          "...Through an inner strengthening, one can lift oneself out of the
          state of ordinary consciousness and in doing so experience something
          similar to the transition from dreaming into wakeful mental
          picturing. Whoever passes from dreaming into a waking state
          experiences how will penetrates into the course of his mental
          pictures, whereas in dreaming he is given over to the course of his
          dream pictures without his own will involvement. What occurs through
          unconscious processes when one awakens from sleep can be effected on
          a different level by conscious soul activity. The human being can
          bring a stronger exercise of will into his ordinary conscious
          thinking than is present there in his usual experience of the
          physical world. Through this he can pass over from thinking to an
          experience of thinking. In ordinary consciousness, thinking is not
          experienced; rather, through thinking, one experiences what is
          thought. But there is an inner work the soul can do that gradually
          brings one to the point of living, not in what is thought, but rather
          in the very activity of thinking itself. A thought that is not simply
          received from the ordinary course of life but rather is placed into
          one's consciousness with will, in order that one experience it in its
          thought nature: such a thought releases different forces in the soul
          than one that is evoked by the presence of outer impressions or by
          the ordinary course of one's soul life. And when, ever anew within
          itself, the soul rouses that devotion - practiced only to a small
          degree, in fact, in ordinary life - to thoughts as such, when the
          soul concentrates upon thoughts as thoughts: then it discovers within
          itself powers that are not employed in ordinary life but remain
          slumbering (latent), as it were. These are powers that are discovered
          only through conscious use. But they predispose the soul to an
          experience not present before their discovery. The thoughts fill
          themselves with a life all their own, which the thinking (meditating)
          person feels to be connected with his own soul being. (What is meant
          here by `seeing consciousness' does not arise from ordinary waking
          consciousness through bodily [physiological] processes the way
          ordinary waking consciousness arises from dream consciousness. In the
          awakening from this latter consciousness into day consciousness, one
          has to do with a changing engagement of the body relative to outer
          reality. In the awakening from ordinary consciousness into seeing
          consciousness, one has to do with a changing engagement of one's soul-
          spiritual way of picturing things relative to a spiritual world.)
          "For this discovery of the life in thoughts, however, the
          expenditure of conscious will is necessary. But this cannot simply be
          that which appears in ordinary consciousness. The will must also
          become engaged in a different way and in a different direction, so to
          speak, than for experience in mere sense-perceptible existence. In
          ordinary life one feels oneself to be the center of what one wills or
          what one wants. For even in wanting, a kind of held-back will is at
          work. The will streams out from the "I" and down into desire, into
          bodily movement, into one's action. A will in this direction is
          ineffective for the soul's awakening out of ordinary consciousness.
          But there is also a direction of will that in a certain sense is the
          opposite of this. It is at work when, without any direct look at an
          outer result, a person seeks to direct his own `I'. This direction of
          the will manifests in a person's efforts to shape his thinking into
          something meaningful and to improve upon his feelings, and in all his
          impulses to self-education. In a gradual intensification of the will
          forces present in a person in this direction there lies what he needs
          in order to awaken out of his ordinary consciousness. One can
          particularly help oneself in pursuit of this goal by observing the
          life of nature with inner heart's involvement. One seeks, for
          example, to look at a plant in such a way that one not only takes up
          its form into one's thoughts, but also, as it were, feels along with
          its inner life., which stretches upward in the stem, spreads out in
          the leaves, opens what is inside to what is outside with its blossom,
          and so on. In such thinking the will is also present in gentle
          resonance; and there, will is a will that is developed in devotion
          and that guides the soul; a will that does not originate from the
          soul, but rather directs its activity upon the soul. At first, one
          quite naturally believes that this will originates in the soul. In
          experiencing the process itself, however, one recognizes that through
          this reversal of the will, a spiritual element, existing outside the
          soul, is grasped by the soul.
          "When will is strengthened in this direction and grasps a
          person's thought-life in the way indicated, then, in actual fact, out
          of the circumference of his ordinary consciousness, another
          consciousness arises that relates to his ordinary one like this
          ordinary consciousness relates to a weaving in dream pictures. And
          this kind of a seeing consciousness is in a position to experience
          and to know the spiritual world...
          "A will that does not tend in the direction just indicated, but
          rather toward everyday desiring, wishing, and so on, cannot - when
          this will is brought to bear upon one's thought-life in the way
          described - lead to the awakening of a seeing consciousness out of
          the ordinary one; it can lead only to a dimming down of this
          consciousness into waking dreams, phantasmagory, visionary states,
          and such like (The Riddle of Man, 1990, 137-140)


          "Man experiences the picture-world of dreams through the fact
          that the level of life possessed by him in the sense world is toned
          down. A person with healthy thinking will not seek instruction from
          dreaming consciousness about waking consciousness; rather, he will
          make waking consciousness the judge over the world of his dream
          pictures. A spiritual science that takes the point of view of seeing
          consciousness thinks in a similar way about the relationship of
          seeing consciousness to ordinary consciousness. Through a spiritual
          science such as this, one recognizes that the material world and its
          processes are in truth only a part of a comprehensive spiritual
          world, of a spiritual world that lies behind the sense world in the
          same way the world of sense-perceptible material processes and
          substances lies behind the picture-world of dreams. And one
          recognizes how the human being descends into sense existence out of a
          spiritual world; and how this sense existence itself is a
          manifestation of spiritual being and spiritual processes. It is
          understandable that many people, out of their habitual thinking,
          scorn a world view such as this because they believe it makes them
          less fit for life. It frightens such people to hear that, compared
          with a higher reality, ordinary reality has something dreamlike about
          it. But does anything about dream consciousness change through our
          seeking - from the vantage point of waking consciousness - to
          understand its nature in reality? A person with a superstitious
          relationship to his dream-pictures can cloud his judgement in waking
          consciousness thereby. But our waking judgement can never damage our
          dreams. In the same way, the adherent of a world view that does not
          wish to gain entry into the spiritual world can cloud his judgement
          about the spiritual world; but genuine insight into the spiritual
          world cannot adversely affect our true assessment of the physical
          world." (ibid, pp.145-146)

          My internet access will be erratic, from now on...
          Take care and give care, rick
        • rickbobbs@yahoo.ca
          Dear Folks; Here are a couple of more, rather concise, descriptions by Steiner on this topic: Initiation, however, transforms the three states of
          Message 4 of 6 , Dec 16 11:20 AM
            Dear Folks;

            Here are a couple of more, rather concise, descriptions
            by Steiner on this topic:

            "Initiation, however, transforms the three states of
            consciousness. First, man's dream life changes. It is no longer
            chaotic, no longer a reproduction of daily experiences often rendered
            in tangled symbols. Instead, a new world unfolds before man in dream-
            filled sleep. A world filled with flowing colors and radiant light-
            beings surrounds him, the astral world. This is no newly created
            world. It is new only for a person who, until now, had not advanced
            beyond the lower state of day-consciousness. Actually, this astral
            world is always present and continuously surrounds the human being.
            It is a real world, as real as the world surrounding us that appears
            to us as reality. Once a person has been initiated, has undergone
            initiation, he becomes acquainted with this wonderful world. He
            learns to be conscious in it with a consciousness as clear – no even
            clearer– than his ordinary day-consciousness. He also becomes
            familiar with his own astral and learns to live in it consciously.
            The basic experience in this new world that unfolds before man is one
            of living and weaving in a world of colors and light. After his
            initiation, man begins to awaken during his ordinary dream-filled
            sleep; it is as though he feels himself borne upward on a surging sea
            of flowing light and colors. This glimmering light and these flowing
            colors are living beings. This experience of conscious dream-filled
            sleep then transmits itself into man's entire life in waking day-
            consciousness, and he learns to see these things in everyday life as
            well." (12 Nov.1906, in: The Inner Nature of Music, 1983, pp.14-15)

            "When man develops these faculties that otherwise slumber,
            when, through meditation, concentration, and so forth, he begins to
            develop his soul, he ascends step by step. The first thing he
            experiences is a peculiar transformation of his dream world. When,
            during meditation, man is able to exclude all memories and
            exoeriences of the outer sense world and yet can retain a soul
            content, his dream world begins to acquire a great regularity. Then,
            when he awakens in the morning, it feels as if he arose out of a
            flowing cosmic ocean. He knows that he has experienced something new.
            It is unlike anything he has known in the physical world. His dream
            experiences gain increasing clarity. He recalls that in this world of
            light and color there were things and beings that distinguished
            themselves from those of the ordinary world in that one could
            penetrate them; they did not offer resistance. Man becomes acquainted
            with a number of beings whose element, whose body, consists of
            colors. They are beings who reveal and embody themselves in color.
            Gradually, man expands his consciousness throughout that world and,
            upon awakening, recalls that he had taken part in that realm. His
            next step is to take that world with him into the daily world. Man
            gradually learns to see what is called the astral body of the human
            being. He experiences a world that is much more real than the
            ordinary, physical world. The physical world is a kind of
            condensation that has been crystallized out of the astral world. In
            this way, man now has two levels of consciousness, the everyday
            waking consciousness and the dream consciousness.
            "Man attains a still higher stage when he is able to transform
            the completely unconscious state of sleep into consciousness. The
            student on the path of spiritual training learns to acquire
            continuity of consciousness for a part of the night, for that part of
            the night that does not belong to the dream life but that is wholly
            unconscious. He now learns to be conscious in a world about which he
            formerly knew nothing. This new world is not one of light and colors
            but announces itself first as a world of tone. In this state of
            consciousness, man develops the faculty to hear spiritually and to
            perceive tone combinations and varieties of tone inaudible to the
            physical ear. This world is called Devachan.
            "Now, one should not believe that when man hears the world of
            tone welling up he does not retain the world of light and color as
            well. The world of tone is permeated also with the light and colors
            that belong to the astral world. The most characteristic element of
            the Devachanic world, however, is this flowing ocean of tones. From
            this world of the continuity of consciousness, man can bring the tone
            element down with him and thus hear the tone element in the physical
            world. Each aspect of the physical represents certain Devachanic
            tones. All objects have a spiritual tone at the foundation of their
            being, and, in his deepest nature, man himself is such a spiritual
            tone, On this basis, Paracelsus said, `The realms of nature are the
            letters, and man is the word that is composed of these letters.'
            "Each time the human being falls asleep and loses consciousness,
            his astral body emerges from his physical body. In this state man is
            certainly unconscious but living in the spiritual world. The
            spiritual sounds make an impression on his soul. The human being
            awakens each morning from a world of the music of the spheres, and
            from this region of harmony he re-enters the physical world. If it is
            true that man's soul experiences Devachan between two incarnations on
            earth, then we may also say that during the night the soul feasts and
            lives in flowing tone, as the element from which it is actually woven
            and which is the soul's true home." (3 Dec. 1906, in: The Inner
            Nature of Music, 1983, pp.3-5)
          • rickbobbs
            Dear Folks: A very interesting aspect: Now it would indeed be very amazing if, under ordinary conditions, someone who had heretofore been sitting quietly in
            Message 5 of 6 , Dec 26 12:03 PM
              Dear Folks:
              A very interesting aspect:

              "Now it would indeed be very amazing if, under ordinary conditions,
              someone who had heretofore been sitting quietly in his chair were to
              feel himself suddenly beginning to fly up into the air through the
              chimney! This would certainly be very amazing, and yet if such a
              thing occurs in a dream, we take part in it without feeling any
              wonder at all. And we experience even more extraordinary things in
              dreams at which we are not at all astonished, although they cannot in
              any way be connected with the occurrences of daily life. In waking-
              life we are already astonished if someone is able to leap very high
              into the air, yet in dreams we fly and are not in the least
              surprised. Thus we are confronted by the fact that, while we are
              awake, we wonder at things which we have not experienced before,
              whereas in dreams we do not wonder at all.
              "The second fact to which we shall turn our attention, as an
              introduction to what is to follow, is the question of conscience.
              When man acts –– and in the case of someone who has a finer feeling
              for things, even when he thinks, –– something stirs within him which
              we call conscience. And this conscience is quite independent of what
              these events may mean in the outer world. We may have done something,
              for instance, which is very profitable for us, and nevertheless our
              conscience may condemn it. When conscience is aroused, everyone feels
              that something streams into the judgement of the deed which has
              nothing to do with its usefulness. It is like a voice which speaks
              within us –– `You should really have done that' or `You ought not to
              have done it!' Here we stand before the reality of conscience, and we
              know how strong the warning power of conscience can be, and how it
              can pursue us throughout life; and we know furthermore that the
              existence of conscience cannot be denied.
              "Now let us turn again to the phenomena of dreams, and we shall see
              that we do the most extraordinary things, which, were we to do them
              in waking life, would cause us the most terrible stings of
              conscience. Everyone can confirm for himself out of his own
              experience that he does things in dreams without the least prick of
              conscience, which would unquestionably evoke its warning voice, were
              he to do them in waking-life.
              "These two realities –– amazement, or wonder, and conscience –– are
              strangely enough eliminated in dreams. Man is accustomed to let such
              things pass by unnoticed; nevertheless they throw light deep into the
              foundation of our existence.
              "In order to clarify these things a little more I should like to
              point out still another fact which is concerned less with conscience
              and more with wonder. In ancient Greece the saying arose that all
              philosophy springs from amazement, from wonder. The experience which
              lies concealed in this sentence –– and it is the experience of the
              ancient Greeks which is meant –– cannot be traced in the most ancient
              times of Greek development. It is to be found in the history of
              philosophy only from a certain point of time onward. The reason for
              this is that in more ancient times men did not yet feel in this way.
              But how does it happen that from a certain time onward, just in
              ancient Greece, men begin to realise that they are amazed? We have
              just seen that we are amazed at what does not fit into our life as we
              have known it hitherto; but if we have only this amazement, the
              amazement of ordinary life, there is nothing particular in it other
              than astonishment at the unusual. He who is astonished at the sight
              of an automobile or a train is not accustomed to see such things, and
              his astonishment is nothing more than the astonishment at the
              uncustomary. Far more worthy of wonder, however, than astonishment at
              motor-cars and railways, at all that is unusual, is the fact that man
              can also begin to wonder at the usual. Consider for instance how the
              sun rises every morning. Those who are accustomed to this in their
              ordinary consciousness are not amazed at it. But when amazement
              begins to arise over everyday things which we are quite used to see,
              philosophy and knowledge result. Those who are richest in knowledge
              are men who can feel wonder over things which the ordinary human
              being simply accepts, for only then do we become true seekers after
              knowledge; and it is out of this realisation that the ancient Greeks
              originated the saying –– All philosophy springs from wonder.
              "But now, what of conscience? Here again it is interesting that the
              word `conscience' –– in other words the concept, for quite clearly
              only when the mental image arises, does the word also appear –– is
              likewise only to be found from a certain time onward in ancient
              Greece. In the more ancient Greek literature, around the time of
              Aeschylus, it is impossible to find any word which could be
              translated as `conscience'. Yet we find such a word used among the
              younger Greek authors, by Euripides for instance. Here we can see, as
              distinctly as if a finger pointed to it, that conscience –– just as
              the amazement at what is customary –– is something which was only
              known after a certain point of time in Greek history. What appeared
              after this point of time as the stirring of conscience, was something
              quite different among the more ancient Greeks. For in these earlier
              times man did not feel pangs of conscience when he had done wrong. He
              still had a primitive elementary clairvoyance; and were we to go back
              to a time only shortly before the beginning of the Christian era, we
              should find that everybody still possessed this primitive
              clairvoyance. If at that time someone had done wrong, he had no pangs
              of conscience, but a daemonic form appeared to his ancient
              clairvoyance and tormented him, and these beings were called Erinnys
              and Furies. Only when man had lost the capacity whereby he could see
              these daemonic forms, did he develop the power to feel conscience as
              an inner experience, when he had done wrong."

              "But now let us investigate why we do not wonder in dreams. Here we
              must first answer the question –– What then is dream in reality. ––
              Dream is an ancient heritage from former incarnations. Within these
              earlier incarnations man passed through other states of consciousness
              of a clairvoyant nature. Later on, during the further course of
              evolution he lost the capacity to see clairvoyantly into the soul-
              spiritual world. He had first a shadowy kind of clairvoyance, and his
              development gradually took its course out of this former shadowy
              clairvoyance into the clear waking consciousness of our present day,
              which could evolve in the physical world in order, when fully
              developed, to ascend once more into the psychic spiritual world with
              the capacities thus won by his Ego in waking consciousness. But what
              did man win in olden days through ancient clairvoyance? Something is
              still left of it –– namely, our dreams. But dreams differ from
              ancient clairvoyance inasmuch as they are an experience of the man of
              modern times; who has developed a consciousness which bears within it
              the impulse for knowledge. Dreams, as the remnant of a former state
              of consciousness, do not contain the desire for knowledge, and this
              is why man experiences the difference between waking consciousness
              and dream-consciousness.
              "Wonder, which was not to be found in the shadowy clairvoyance of
              ancient times, can also not enter the dream-consciousness of today.
              Amazement, wonder, cannot reach into our dreams, but we experience
              them in waking consciousness when we turn our attention towards the
              outer world. In his dreams man is not in this outer world, for they
              transport him into the spiritual realm, and there he no longer
              experiences the things of the physical plane. Yet it is just with
              regard to this physical world that he has learned to wonder. In
              dreams he accepts everything as he accepted it in ancient
              clairvoyance, when he could simply take things as they were, because
              spiritual forms came to him and showed him the good or evil which he
              had done. For this reason he did not then need wonder. Thus dreams
              show us through their own nature that they are a heritage from
              ancient times, when there was neither wonder at the things of
              everyday life, nor conscience."

              "If we wish to know what conscience is; we must turn our attention to
              an occurrence in life which we can observe without clairvoyance. We
              must become aware of the moment of falling asleep. This we can learn
              to do without clairvoyance, and what may thus be experienced can be
              attained by everyone. When we are on the point of falling asleep,
              everything begins to lose its sharp outlines, colours grow pale,
              sounds not only become fainter, but even seem to recede, to be far
              away; they come to us as if from a great distance, and we can
              describe their increasing faintness as a `receding'. This entire
              process –– this `becoming less distinct' of the world of the senses ––
              is like a transformation, as when mists are gathering. Our limbs
              also grow weaker. We feel in them something which we did not feel
              before in a waking condition; it is as if they were endowed with
              weight, with heaviness.

              "It is now a question of observing a subtile nuance which occurs in
              the moment when the limbs begin to grow heavy. A very strange feeling
              then arises. It manifests itself by saying to us, as it were –– `You
              have done this!' or `You have failed to do that!' The deeds of the
              past day thus immerge like a living conscience. And if there is
              something among them which we cannot approve of, we toss about on our
              couch and cannot go to sleep. If however we are able to feel
              contented about our deeds, then a blissful moment comes over us as we
              fall asleep and we say to ourselves –– "Ah, could it but always
              remain thus!" Then follows a sudden jerk; as it were. This is the
              moment when man passes out of his physical and etheric bodies, and he
              is then in the spiritual world.
              "Let us examine more exactly the moment in which this living
              conscience, as we may call it, arises within us. Without having the
              strength to really do anything sensible, we toss about on our couch.
              This is an unhealthy state and prevents us from falling asleep. It
              occurs when, on approaching sleep, we are about to leave the physical
              plane in order to ascend into another world, which however will not
              receive what we call "a bad conscience". We cannot fall asleep
              because we are thrown back again by the world which we must now
              enter. The saying that an action should be considered from the point
              of view of conscience means, therefore, nothing else than a
              foreboding of what we must be like in the future, as human beings, in
              order that we may enter the spiritual world." (3 Feb. 1912, in:
              Conscience and Wonder as Indications... , elib. Lecture, pp.2-7)
            • rickbobbs
              Dear Folks: A very interesting aspect: Now it would indeed be very amazing if, under ordinary conditions, someone who had heretofore been sitting quietly in
              Message 6 of 6 , Dec 26 12:03 PM
                Dear Folks:
                A very interesting aspect:

                "Now it would indeed be very amazing if, under ordinary conditions,
                someone who had heretofore been sitting quietly in his chair were to
                feel himself suddenly beginning to fly up into the air through the
                chimney! This would certainly be very amazing, and yet if such a
                thing occurs in a dream, we take part in it without feeling any
                wonder at all. And we experience even more extraordinary things in
                dreams at which we are not at all astonished, although they cannot in
                any way be connected with the occurrences of daily life. In waking-
                life we are already astonished if someone is able to leap very high
                into the air, yet in dreams we fly and are not in the least
                surprised. Thus we are confronted by the fact that, while we are
                awake, we wonder at things which we have not experienced before,
                whereas in dreams we do not wonder at all.
                "The second fact to which we shall turn our attention, as an
                introduction to what is to follow, is the question of conscience.
                When man acts –– and in the case of someone who has a finer feeling
                for things, even when he thinks, –– something stirs within him which
                we call conscience. And this conscience is quite independent of what
                these events may mean in the outer world. We may have done something,
                for instance, which is very profitable for us, and nevertheless our
                conscience may condemn it. When conscience is aroused, everyone feels
                that something streams into the judgement of the deed which has
                nothing to do with its usefulness. It is like a voice which speaks
                within us –– `You should really have done that' or `You ought not to
                have done it!' Here we stand before the reality of conscience, and we
                know how strong the warning power of conscience can be, and how it
                can pursue us throughout life; and we know furthermore that the
                existence of conscience cannot be denied.
                "Now let us turn again to the phenomena of dreams, and we shall see
                that we do the most extraordinary things, which, were we to do them
                in waking life, would cause us the most terrible stings of
                conscience. Everyone can confirm for himself out of his own
                experience that he does things in dreams without the least prick of
                conscience, which would unquestionably evoke its warning voice, were
                he to do them in waking-life.
                "These two realities –– amazement, or wonder, and conscience –– are
                strangely enough eliminated in dreams. Man is accustomed to let such
                things pass by unnoticed; nevertheless they throw light deep into the
                foundation of our existence.
                "In order to clarify these things a little more I should like to
                point out still another fact which is concerned less with conscience
                and more with wonder. In ancient Greece the saying arose that all
                philosophy springs from amazement, from wonder. The experience which
                lies concealed in this sentence –– and it is the experience of the
                ancient Greeks which is meant –– cannot be traced in the most ancient
                times of Greek development. It is to be found in the history of
                philosophy only from a certain point of time onward. The reason for
                this is that in more ancient times men did not yet feel in this way.
                But how does it happen that from a certain time onward, just in
                ancient Greece, men begin to realise that they are amazed? We have
                just seen that we are amazed at what does not fit into our life as we
                have known it hitherto; but if we have only this amazement, the
                amazement of ordinary life, there is nothing particular in it other
                than astonishment at the unusual. He who is astonished at the sight
                of an automobile or a train is not accustomed to see such things, and
                his astonishment is nothing more than the astonishment at the
                uncustomary. Far more worthy of wonder, however, than astonishment at
                motor-cars and railways, at all that is unusual, is the fact that man
                can also begin to wonder at the usual. Consider for instance how the
                sun rises every morning. Those who are accustomed to this in their
                ordinary consciousness are not amazed at it. But when amazement
                begins to arise over everyday things which we are quite used to see,
                philosophy and knowledge result. Those who are richest in knowledge
                are men who can feel wonder over things which the ordinary human
                being simply accepts, for only then do we become true seekers after
                knowledge; and it is out of this realisation that the ancient Greeks
                originated the saying –– All philosophy springs from wonder.
                "But now, what of conscience? Here again it is interesting that the
                word `conscience' –– in other words the concept, for quite clearly
                only when the mental image arises, does the word also appear –– is
                likewise only to be found from a certain time onward in ancient
                Greece. In the more ancient Greek literature, around the time of
                Aeschylus, it is impossible to find any word which could be
                translated as `conscience'. Yet we find such a word used among the
                younger Greek authors, by Euripides for instance. Here we can see, as
                distinctly as if a finger pointed to it, that conscience –– just as
                the amazement at what is customary –– is something which was only
                known after a certain point of time in Greek history. What appeared
                after this point of time as the stirring of conscience, was something
                quite different among the more ancient Greeks. For in these earlier
                times man did not feel pangs of conscience when he had done wrong. He
                still had a primitive elementary clairvoyance; and were we to go back
                to a time only shortly before the beginning of the Christian era, we
                should find that everybody still possessed this primitive
                clairvoyance. If at that time someone had done wrong, he had no pangs
                of conscience, but a daemonic form appeared to his ancient
                clairvoyance and tormented him, and these beings were called Erinnys
                and Furies. Only when man had lost the capacity whereby he could see
                these daemonic forms, did he develop the power to feel conscience as
                an inner experience, when he had done wrong."

                "But now let us investigate why we do not wonder in dreams. Here we
                must first answer the question –– What then is dream in reality. ––
                Dream is an ancient heritage from former incarnations. Within these
                earlier incarnations man passed through other states of consciousness
                of a clairvoyant nature. Later on, during the further course of
                evolution he lost the capacity to see clairvoyantly into the soul-
                spiritual world. He had first a shadowy kind of clairvoyance, and his
                development gradually took its course out of this former shadowy
                clairvoyance into the clear waking consciousness of our present day,
                which could evolve in the physical world in order, when fully
                developed, to ascend once more into the psychic spiritual world with
                the capacities thus won by his Ego in waking consciousness. But what
                did man win in olden days through ancient clairvoyance? Something is
                still left of it –– namely, our dreams. But dreams differ from
                ancient clairvoyance inasmuch as they are an experience of the man of
                modern times; who has developed a consciousness which bears within it
                the impulse for knowledge. Dreams, as the remnant of a former state
                of consciousness, do not contain the desire for knowledge, and this
                is why man experiences the difference between waking consciousness
                and dream-consciousness.
                "Wonder, which was not to be found in the shadowy clairvoyance of
                ancient times, can also not enter the dream-consciousness of today.
                Amazement, wonder, cannot reach into our dreams, but we experience
                them in waking consciousness when we turn our attention towards the
                outer world. In his dreams man is not in this outer world, for they
                transport him into the spiritual realm, and there he no longer
                experiences the things of the physical plane. Yet it is just with
                regard to this physical world that he has learned to wonder. In
                dreams he accepts everything as he accepted it in ancient
                clairvoyance, when he could simply take things as they were, because
                spiritual forms came to him and showed him the good or evil which he
                had done. For this reason he did not then need wonder. Thus dreams
                show us through their own nature that they are a heritage from
                ancient times, when there was neither wonder at the things of
                everyday life, nor conscience."

                "If we wish to know what conscience is; we must turn our attention to
                an occurrence in life which we can observe without clairvoyance. We
                must become aware of the moment of falling asleep. This we can learn
                to do without clairvoyance, and what may thus be experienced can be
                attained by everyone. When we are on the point of falling asleep,
                everything begins to lose its sharp outlines, colours grow pale,
                sounds not only become fainter, but even seem to recede, to be far
                away; they come to us as if from a great distance, and we can
                describe their increasing faintness as a `receding'. This entire
                process –– this `becoming less distinct' of the world of the senses ––
                is like a transformation, as when mists are gathering. Our limbs
                also grow weaker. We feel in them something which we did not feel
                before in a waking condition; it is as if they were endowed with
                weight, with heaviness.

                "It is now a question of observing a subtile nuance which occurs in
                the moment when the limbs begin to grow heavy. A very strange feeling
                then arises. It manifests itself by saying to us, as it were –– `You
                have done this!' or `You have failed to do that!' The deeds of the
                past day thus immerge like a living conscience. And if there is
                something among them which we cannot approve of, we toss about on our
                couch and cannot go to sleep. If however we are able to feel
                contented about our deeds, then a blissful moment comes over us as we
                fall asleep and we say to ourselves –– "Ah, could it but always
                remain thus!" Then follows a sudden jerk; as it were. This is the
                moment when man passes out of his physical and etheric bodies, and he
                is then in the spiritual world.
                "Let us examine more exactly the moment in which this living
                conscience, as we may call it, arises within us. Without having the
                strength to really do anything sensible, we toss about on our couch.
                This is an unhealthy state and prevents us from falling asleep. It
                occurs when, on approaching sleep, we are about to leave the physical
                plane in order to ascend into another world, which however will not
                receive what we call "a bad conscience". We cannot fall asleep
                because we are thrown back again by the world which we must now
                enter. The saying that an action should be considered from the point
                of view of conscience means, therefore, nothing else than a
                foreboding of what we must be like in the future, as human beings, in
                order that we may enter the spiritual world." (3 Feb. 1912, in:
                Conscience and Wonder as Indications... , elib. Lecture, pp.2-7)
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