- Various Thoughts by Dr. Starman The Fourth Dimension: In the last part of his life, Steiner s creations such as Eurythmy and the first Goetheanum show hisMessage 1 of 1 , Aug 2, 2007View Source
by Dr. Starman
The Fourth Dimension:
In the last part of his life, Steiner's creations such as Eurythmy and the first Goetheanum show his practical usage of space in a new way. Besides the astronomy course, his lectures in the 1920s are filled with references to this new way of experiencing space. Eurythmy, of course, gives every individual the possibility of this experience. It's quite true that the three dimensions normal human beings experience in the present are qualitatively different from each other; in fact, even movement to the right is qualitatively different than movement to the left, although that is in the same dimension. Above and below, left and right, and backward and forward can all be experienced in a much more intense way than the abstract thinking of the mathematician, as many dancers know.
But the early lectures Steiner gave were seeking to build upon the work that had been done by mathematicians and theosophists around the turn-of-the-century, for instance, Hinton and Claude Bragdon. There was very important work done about 1900 in non-Euclidean geometry, groundbreaking efforts to go beyond the "box" of three dimensions. The "Flatland" analogy made famous in the late 1800s was extended, for instance by Hinton in his "A New Era of Thought" which was later given a still fuller treatment by P.D. Ouspensky in his "Tertium Organum" (the book the Edgar Cayce readings recommended to understand higher dimensions, written before poor Ouspensky unfortunately came under the deleterious influence of Gurdjieff). A good treatment of the entire genre is "The Fourth Dimension And Non Euclidean Geometry in Modern Art" by Linda Henderson. These ideas generated the movement of Cubism, influenced men as widely diverse as Marcel Duchamp and Kandinsky, and even had much to do with how Einstein came up with his theory of relativity.
What is the real tragedy is that all of this has been forgotten and/or distorted. The insight was not that there was a fourth dimension and that this dimension was time: that is a complete misinterpretation. What was worked out was that there was no reason to suppose that the number of dimensions did not go on infinitely; and, and as beings learned to sense each new dimension, all that had been perceived before would change its character. What a being was unable to sense as a dimension of space was perceived as changes in the dimensions of space it was able to perceive, or in other words as change in time. Ouspensky, the building upon Hinton, gives thinking exercises by which this can be directly experienced.
In reading Steiner's lectures about the fourth dimension, it would be helpful to know this background. I recommend the book mentioned above, along with Ouspensky's Tertium Organum. It's quite true that the fourth dimension as we are usually taught about it is not at all anything Steiner agreed with. Instead he said from his own experience that the fourth dimension was more like the second dimension again, in a sense. But this, as expected since the topic is geometry, is just a part of a very large study, and quoting one line from a lecture would be of little use.
Islam and the West
Europe is indeed a beacon of light, won by the lives of brave men like Bruno and Huss and the others who defied the theocracy that once ruled it. In America , our freedom of speech was won by the revolutionaries who fought and died so we would have it. But freedom has to be defended; as Jefferson put it, "The Tree of Liberty must be watered from time to time with the blood of patriots---and Tyrants. That is its natural manure."
"Arabism in Europe" is not what rules the West, but is rather a PART of it-----one caused by the same false materialistic interpretations of Aristotle, etc., which Steiner fought as Thomas Aquinas, and which Islam championed THEN, and STILL DOES NOW. It does not know the Christ; where Christ works indeed in Western civilization, very powerfully, which is why it prizes freedom and the individual. The ideology of Islam does not, any more than the Roman Catholic Church did. It was that Western civilization that Rudolf Steiner came to renew, not to condemn.
Martin Luther had the right to say he thought the Pope and the Roman Church was the great Beast in Revelations, satanic distorter of Christ---- and I have the right to say (with Steiner) that Islam is the tool of the Antichrist or Sorath (see below).
Mankind is dividing into human and sub-human (the "separating of the sheep from the goats" in Matthew 24), and innocent people have the right to live without being threatened by diabolical creatures. So people preaching an anti-Christian and anti-Western ideology of hate and murder, who have no intention of assimilating into the society they enter (and pledging allegiance to it and its laws, and renouncing all other allegiances), but rather have open contempt for it and want only to conquer it by violence, these people simply have no "right" to immigration into other countries. That is not a political statement from one ideology or another. Look at the Israelis building a wall to keep their people safe; they do nothing to the people on the other side of the wall, and if those people cross over it to kill Israelis, then they show who is in the wrong and doing evil.
We don't have to "demonize" Wahhabi Islam, it does so itself with every Van Gogh it kills and every Manhattan skyscraper it blows up and every London commuter it cripples.
To give people a little background of the history of "astrosophy", we could say that, from what we know out of Anthroposophy, in ancient times people knew the heavenly beings and forces they called the gods in a state of natural clairvoyance, which, however, was dreamlike, without self-consciousness. Over the past several thousand years, we lost that ancient clairvoyance in order to gain clear waking consciousness. Now, it is the demand of our times that we get back clairvoyance, but now guided by our waking self-consciousness. The method of getting it back is spiritual science. So, when one practices spiritual science, a natural result of it is to be able to know the gods again. The ancient religions before Christianity all were inspired by the initiates having direct experience of the Gods, so the modern initiate can understand the source of ancient religions, since he experiences them again ---- then, at the very time that divine beings not in a physical body became no longer visible to man, the Christ appeared in a physical body, so another natural consequence of the practice of spiritual science is the meeting with the Christ Being ---- and, finally, all ancient religions, from out of their direct experience of the gods, knew how to work out the timing of their rituals from this perception, which was the source of all sacred calendars and seasonal rituals, and this divine knowledge of "signs and seasons" was also used to understand the nature of souls born at this or that time. That was the source of all ancient astrology; but, by the time of Christ, the different form of consciousness we had in which the ancient clairvoyance was lost and replaced by the intellect had reduced what had come from an inspired source to a series of formulas and calculations. The modern initiate can go beyond what has been handed down in this way to the actual sources, to the spiritual beings themselves. This was what Rudolf Steiner did. Astrology, in this widest sense, is found all throughout his work. But in order to have a real astrology that goes beyond mere intellect and calculation using old formulas, people have to pursue the development of this new clairvoyance.
Dr. Steiner's chief pupil that he gave many indications to about how to develop a new art of astrology was the first head of the mathematical-astronomical section of the Goetheanum, Dr. Elizabeth Vreede. She published a letter for many years about how to lead from intellectual astronomy to an inspired star wisdom; a number of her letters have only recently been translated into English and published as the book "Anthroposophy and Astrology", available from the Anthroposophic Press.
Throughout the years, various anthroposophists have worked with astrology, for instance as Waldorf school teachers, where learning to recognize the four temperaments (fire, air, water, earth) is an important part of education--- in the use of the calendar of the soul with its images of the 12 constellations, the moon's position and phase, etc. --- the celebration of the four festivals of the year by the anthroposophical society and in the Waldorf schools, which Steiner connected with the 4 principal archangels and the biblical Quadruplicity of bull, lion, eagle, and man (the 4 fixed signs of the zodiac) ---- in the planting and harvesting on biodynamic farms --- in the understanding of the human body in anthroposophical medicine --- in the experiencing of the signs and planets in speech and Eurythmy, and so on. But the creation of an astrology where individuals could be helped to understand themselves better through their birth horoscopes was always regarded as something that would have to be worked out in the future, until Willi Sucher came along. He was a remarkable man who took up Dr. Vreede's work with indications from Dr. Steiner and published a series of books. Unfortunately, he seems to have gone off all by himself, even publishing the books only by himself, so that I believe they are still not available through the Anthroposophic Press.
But he influenced a lot of people through the 1960s and 1970s, including Robert Powell, and he (Powell) started a magazine for the study of astrology called The Mercury Star Journal in England . He also wrote a series of books and is still writing. I think Brian Gray is either a disciple of his or started out from the same source. I've heard good about both of them.
Celebrating Michaelmas and the Stars:
Now, in Anthroposophy we start with the ordinary intellect and are led step-by-step into perceiving higher realities through our thinking. This is the case with the higher parts of the human being, for instance in the book Theosophy, as well as the hierarchies of being above man, for instance in An Outline of Occult Science. These are the same realities described, for instance, by the ancient Vedic religion as the seven chakras, and in the Kabbalah as the Tree of Life.
The associations of the spheres of the Tree of Life with the planets were worked out by the Order of the Golden Dawn, before Steiner ever began lecturing.
The physical body is pictured as the Earth. It is the 4 elements, the equal-armed cross within a circle. In the horoscope, this is the rising sign or ascendant, or more accurately it is what four signs are rising, setting, directly above and directly below, included in which is any planets which happen to be at those four points. Thus, the condition of the physical body is indicated by what is rising, setting, culminating and at the nadir of an individual's horoscope---especially what is rising.
The etheric body of life forces extends slightly outside of the earth, to the sphere of the moon. The condition of a person's etheric body is indicated by the moon in their horoscope, what's sign it's in, its phase (relation to the sun), and strong aspects to other planets, especially conjunctions. The Moon is the symbol for the etheric body.
The Ego of a human being is symbolized by the Sun. There are 12 soul patterns, and in each lifetime the ego takes on one of them--- the Sun sign. The condition of the Ego is indicated by the sun's sign, house, and aspects to other planets.
Between the ego and the etheric body is the astral body. The astral body is said to have a higher and a lower part: these two parts are symbolized by the planets "between the sun and the moon", Mercury and Venus. One of these can be considered the sentient soul and one the soul body, or in another sense one is sentient soul and one the intellectual soul. They have to do with the left and right halves of the body, and the two brains. Mercury has to do with the left brain and Venus the right brain. Mercury shows how a person structures his thinking into speech. Venus shows what he finds beautiful and loves. These two are always near the sun, just as the astral body is always united to the ego.
Here is where matters get tricky. Taking the parts of Man and putting them into a linear diagram always creates problems, because the reality is more like the intervals of the musical scale. You have to have flexibility of thinking. Here's one way to put it: leaving aside the combination of all of the planetary influences which is the earthly physical body for a moment, we have the Sun representing the true self and three lower parts, the "inner planets", Venus Mercury and the Moon.
Now, when the higher astral body is transmuted by the ego, it becomes Manas or spirit self: that is, Venus, when transmuted, becomes Mars. This is why Mars rules the signs in the sky opposite those which Venus rules. When the lower astral body is transmuted by the ego, it becomes Buddhi or life spirit. Mercury is transmuted into Jupiter--- and the same thing is found, the signs Mercury rules are opposite those of Jupiter. When the work of the ego extends all the way down to the moon level, the etheric body, the Moon is transmuted into Saturn (Atma).
A person who has reached the level of spirit self will have it show in his horoscope by the strong influence of the planet Mars---- the sun conjunct Mars, or Mars conjunct the ascendent. A person who has reached the level of Buddhi will show it in his horoscope by the prominence of the planet Jupiter. A person reaching the highest level of Atman shows it by the planet Saturn. A person in the process of transmuting his astral body into spirit self who has one part transmuted and another not, will show this by Venus opposing or squaring Mars, for instance.
The outermost planets -- -- -- Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto -- -- -- are a quite different matter, and so I have left them out of consideration here. They have a relation to the outer planets, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn, just as the outer planets are a mirror image of the inner planets.
Thus the very elementary facts of Anthroposophy, when read aright, give the key to an understanding of the various elements of a horoscope, the planets. Hopefully we can discuss this without the dismal familiar response that I'm "distorting Anthroposophy." I am not. I've been testing this for over 25 years. I'd be happy to share with you what I've worked out, and I have confidence that if you examine it you'll find it makes sense out of everything Steiner says about the planets and their nature.
Next I'll make some diagrams about the astronomy of casting a horoscope, to make these things clearer -- -- -- and I'll also point out where Steiner gives the key to all of astrology ----in a footnote to An Outline of Occult Science! He intended people to work all this out for themselves and I have, and here in this forum I don't think I have to worry about revealing things that he made cryptic deliberately. All of you who have worked with the basic books and lectures will begin to see if all for yourself easily.
I'm sure some other anthroposophists have also worked this out, too. I just haven't run across them yet. Perhaps someone can enlighten me.
Spiritual Vision in Theosophy:
Spiritual perception, I said, involves the will in a way that ordinary physical perception does not. It is a perception, but it's not like sense perception: it has peculiarities of its own. To perceive something spiritually means to form a relationship with a spiritual being. The process of doing so is just as complex as forming a relationship in the physical world. When you walk through a crowd of people, a person you already know stands out while the others blend into the background, but this would not be true for the person walking next to you if they don't know him. He would just be a part of the crowd of faces. You could have a person who knows you pass on important information with a few words, which the person next to you would not understand because he has no relationship to the being, while you do. It's a very intimate matter. Dr. Steiner is describing this again and again when he refers to people in his life, alive or dead, and how his relationship to them unlocked this or that secret. You are able to understand another being spiritually because of a relationship you have gained to that being, be it human or otherwise, and so it involves your inner self and the inner self of the other being.
In the world of physical perception, a being can be sending out sound, for instance, and it is perceptible theoretically to everyone; but, as we said, because of what is going on in a person's soul and spirit, they may tune the person out completely. Similarly, a person who has not yet gained a relationship to a spiritual being will perceive it as silent and uncommunicative as a rock cliff. Another person may have experienced that rock cliff as silent up until a certain point when he became able to hear it speak, and now regularly has conversations with it!
As to the quote about two seers perceiving the same thing, like a formation in human aura, it's true if they are both focusing on the same formation. But there's a lot to that "focusing" ! Elsewhere, Steiner once answered the question posed by ordinary consciousness, 'Well, to test out clairvoyance, why don't we just get two or more psychics together and ask them to look at the same thing or person, and if they describe things similar, that proves it exists?' He said that purposes and intentions are a big part of spiritual perception, and bringing people together for the purpose of satisfying some professor's curiosity would not be a very good intention. First, the spiritual world itself would have to bring it about that two or more clairvoyants are in the same place for some purpose, and then they would have to have a reason for both perceiving a being together.
You are right when you say that it is something which has to be waited for and is then received as a gift. It is indeed, and whether the gift is given as a lot to do with intentions and purposes. That's the reason for moral purification on the spiritual path.
copyright © 2003 by Dr. Starman