Ch. 3 - The Air Trial
- Dr. Steiner writes:
" If the candidate is in this way sufficiently advanced, a third trial awaits him. He finds here no definite goal to be reached. All is left in his own hands. He finds himself in a situation where nothing impels him to act. He must find his way all alone and out of himself. Things or people to stimulate him to action are non-existent. Nothing and nobody can give him the strength he needs but he himself alone. Failure to find this inner strength will leave him standing where he was. Few of those, however, who have successfully passed the previous trials will fail to find the necessary strength at this point. Either they will have turned back already or they succeed at this point also. All that the candidate requires is the ability to come quickly to terms with himself, for he must here find his higher self in the truest sense of the word. He must rapidly decide in all things to listen to the inspiration of the spirit. There is no time for doubt or hesitation. Every moment of hesitation would prove that he was still unfit. Whatever prevents him from listening to the voice of the spirit must be courageously overcome. It is a question of showing presence of mind in this situation, and the training at this stage is concerned with the perfect development of this quality. All the accustomed inducements to act or even to think now cease. In order not to remain inactive he must not lose himself, for only within himself can he find the one central point of vantage where he can gain a firm hold. No one on reading this, without further acquaintance with these mattes, should feel an antipathy for this principle of being thrown back on oneself, for success in this trial brings with it a moment of supreme happiness.
At this stage, no less than at the others, ordinary life is itself an esoteric training for many. For anyone having reached the point of being able, when suddenly confronted with some task or problem in life, to come to a swift decision without hesitation or delay, for him life itself has been a training in this sense. Such situations are here meant in which success is instantly lost if action is not rapid. A person who is quick to act when a misfortune is imminent, whereas a few moments of hesitation would have seen the misfortune an accomplished fact, and who has turned this ability into a permanent personal quality, has unconsciously acquired the degree of maturity necessary for the third trial. For at this stage everything centers round the development of absolute presence of mind. This trial is known as the Air-Trial, because while undergoing it the candidate can support himself neither upon the firm basis of external incentive nor upon the figures, tones, and colors which he has learned at the stages of preparation and enlightenment, but exclusively upon himself."
********Are you the type of person who can act when sudden circumstances demand it, whereas a moment's hesitation would mean disaster? Then you have unconsciously passed through this trial, or undergone it in a previous life.
By the way, notice the progression. The Fire Trial refers to coming to know the world in full clarity, a more intense experience of yourself and your world. The Water Trial refers to first knowing it on a still deeper level through the occult script, the occult influences of stars, planets, colors, etc., and being able to act according to these influences. The Air Trial means having to move beyond those things and act according to the intuitions of the Self that interpreted these in the water trial.
If you know any people will get deeply into astrology, they are seeking to know the occult script. But if any of these people get so much into it that they don't make a move without checking their horoscopes and seem unable to simply act on their own, they are undergoing the Air Trial. The same is true for any people that get deeply into the study of any occult influences, crystals, numbers, etc..