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RE: [steiner] Re: Correspondances and polarities in the physical world

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  • Durward Starman
    ******* I don t agree that anthroposophy has failed at all. That judgement depends on what we think would be success . Being known by millions of people,
    Message 1 of 14 , Aug 15, 2010
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      ******* I don't agree that anthroposophy has 'failed' at all. That judgement depends on what we think would be 'success'. Being known by millions of people, having lots of public discussion of it?

      RB: Yes, you are right, it depends on what you mean. It shall also be noted that I say this pretty much from an "outside" perspective, but I think we will need such perspectives also. When I wrote my previous message I thought as follows:
      Anthroposophy -> Society ("reversed cultus"): When reading Steiner I think it is obvious that he intended his anthroposophy to be an impulse to be taken up by the "normal" outward society, regerdless of if the field of action was education, agriculture, medicine or something else, and not something that should be turned into various "alternative" movements. Of course he was aware that this was not likely to happen for a long time, but he had to try and hope for the best. As I see it, history has shown that it was not so easy, and as far as I understand it anthropophy and its activities has not been able to influence established society very much since the days of Steiner. In this case I think anthroposphy can`t be blamed very much. If you were to examine the activities of e.g. anthroposophical natural scientists (Adams, Lehrs, Kolisko, Pfeiffer, Schatz, Köller, Edwards, Thomas...etc.) I guess you would find that they in many cases sent their works to established scientists, held lectures to etablished scientists etc, but without these scientists being interested or able to take up what was offered.

      Society -> anthroposophy ("cultus"): I also think that Steiner had hopes of there being a powerful anthroposophical society, that could be a meeting place for esoterically interested persons from different spiritual traditions. The activities would be everything from discussions, lectures, study groups, art...but also in the long run some kind of grade-based "mystery school" with ritualistic elements etc, where people seeking an esoteric schooling could find the guidance for this. Has this come about? Well, I think it may be quite different, depending on where you look, and I don´t have much of an overview. In Sweden, where I live there is - as in most European countries I guess - the traditional anthroposophic activities with education, art, biodynamic farming, medicine etc, but I don`t think that the teachings of anthroposophy is presented to the outside world in a way that will attract new people, and also that there is no good strategies for taking care of people who after all find their way to it. This is my judgement after studying how it is presented outwardly, including the websites that are in different ways connected to the anthro society / movement in Sweden... 




       ******* Well, I think Steiner wanted INDIVIDUALS to take up what he had to give out. If already-existing institutions had individuals who found their way to anthroposophical insight, then the given individuals might reform them: but if an individual finds he feels his spirit needs to create something that has no place in established institutions, then Steiner was VERY MUCH in favor of  people starting "alternative" movements. After all, he started the Movement For A Threefold Social Order after the World War himself, he gave his blessing to the Movement for Religious Renewal which resulted in a completely new church, the Christian Community, etc. He described we anthroposophists as a tiny minority who know the truth, and who will act as a leaven to the rest of mankind. I'm sure he didn't expect to have large segments of society affected by anthroposophy for a long time--- although in the desperate time right after the War he hoped people might act (they didn't).


           As for the Anthroposophical Society/School of Spiritual Science---- for a long time, at Steiner's direction, its study material was stamped with a label that said its contents came from a source that had nothing to do with customary opinions and therefore that students would not discuss it with anyone unless they were also students in the School or had gained the equivalent knowledge in a specific way recognized by the School. So no, I don't think he wanted lots of people from so-called Rosicrucian orders, Masons, etc., descending on the Goetheanum; only if individuals recognized anthroposophy as worth far more than what they got from those other groups. In the School, we have our Mystery School whose ritual elements are inner, performed in meditation, along with the external acting-out of the Mystery Plays which pictures what you experience as you develop. And if people find anthroposophy and say, I want to work with farming or with children or with medicine, there is a Section in the Goetheanum that will assist any serious endeavors. It's on the internet now, of course. In fact, if you knew anyone wanting to work with any of these I could put him or her in touch with the right Section leader almost immediately. We were always told not to prosletyze, to seek out new members, but to allow people to find their way to us, and I think that's wise. If people aren't, I think it has more to do with the individuals than the Society.



      RB: If I look back on what I have studied over the years it seems to be natural science and "general esoterics"...In principle I am interested in all aspects of esoterics - also the purely spiritual - but since I`m not clairvayant it will in the final analysis be a question of either embarking on a spiritual schooling myself or believing what one authority (eg. Steiner) or other has to say. After all, how do you know that someone like Steiner is right? He behaved exemplary: wrote "ordinary" works (Philosphy of Freedom etc), told the world about his methods used, showed his knowledge of most aspects of culture etc...but in the final analysis, how do you know that he was right when it comes to purely spiritual issues? For your own part you can always believe what you want, but it´s different when you shall explain to other people why e.g. Steiner is right and not someone else.


       ******* This is a much more important point. It's not correct, I believe from my own direct experience, that there's what you can know and then there's "revelation", stuff that people say from something you can't experience and so you have to take on faith. The Philosophy of Freedom is a path that can enable anyone to recognize that he is already having clairvoyant experience when he thinks in pure thinking. When you say "I" to yourself you already go beyond Nature. Perhaps we can discuss this a bit more: it's the key to overcoming that dualism of "what I know/other".


      Starman




      .

    • Durward Starman
      ******* Well, where do you live, Peter? In the US, they have been put on in California, Ann Arbor and New York. In fact I m going to act in one in New York
      Message 2 of 14 , Aug 15, 2010
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        ******* Well, where do you live, Peter? In the US, they have been put on in California, Ann Arbor and New York. In fact I'm going to act in one in New York next year (Spring Valley). I don't know of any encouragement needed by the people there who take this up as something they want to do for their community of seekers. The Plays are now public domain, so  anyone can put them on.  The Society does not exist to give impulses to its members, but for members to say, "We have this impulse, serve us doing it." So the Goetheanum will voluntarily send people to help a community put on a Play if they get togetherr to do one. The same relationship exists with, say, Waldorf Education or Bio-Dynamic Agriculture: first people start a school or a farm, then the Sections will help in whatever way they can.

           As far as this year's productions of all 4 of the Plays, they did them 4 times (in April, May, June and July) and will do one final performance at Christmastime. I'm sure they were money-makers for our Society, not losers, so no, they are not having to raise extra money to put them on. The Great Hall was packed every time. And by the way, for those who don't know about our movement's threefold principles, no one is ever turned away from any Society events for lack of money.

        Starman

        www.DrStarman.com



         
        Yes, good to see discussion raising many points. For the moment, just one question. The Mystery Plays in Dornach may well be a memorable experience for those who have the opportunity to go. But, in relation to anthroposophy reaching the general public or at least a larger part thereof, would it not be better to give attention to encouraging local communities to stage the Mystery Plays and productions of Faust in a similar way that the Oberufer Christmas plays are produced locally. I understand that the ever bigger and better productions in Dornach consume a considerable part of the Society's resources including special fund raisings, bequests etc.

        ->
        ******* ... having just returned from the Goetheanum, where a thousand people came for 4 days to see long, difficult presentations of all 4 of Steiner's Mystery Plays, I don't agree that anthroposophy has 'failed' at all. That judgement depends on what we think would be 'success'. Being known by millions of people, having lots of public discussion of it? But large numbers of people are not likely to understand spiritual science in our lifetime. It is always going to appeal to a minority. There are multiple reasons for this, but fortunately a small number of people can and do have an effect out of all proportion to their numbers.
        >
      • robert.barnskog
        ... RB: OK, it seems that we disagree on these issues, so I don´t know if it´s meaningful to continue the discussion. I suggest we postpone this to some
        Message 3 of 14 , Aug 16, 2010
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          >
          >
          > As for the Anthroposophical Society/School of Spiritual Science---- for a long time, at Steiner's direction, its study material was stamped with a label that said its contents came from a source that had nothing to do with customary opinions and therefore that students would not discuss it with anyone unless they were also students in the School or had gained the equivalent knowledge in a specific way recognized by the School. So no, I don't think he wanted lots of people from so-called Rosicrucian orders, Masons, etc., descending on the Goetheanum; only if individuals recognized anthroposophy as worth far more than what they got from those other groups. In the School, we have our Mystery School whose ritual elements are inner, performed in meditation, along with the external acting-out of the Mystery Plays which pictures what you experience as you develop. And if people find anthroposophy and say, I want to work with farming or with children or with medicine, there is a Section in the Goetheanum that will assist any serious endeavors. It's on the internet now, of course. In fact, if you knew anyone wanting to work with any of these I could put him or her in touch with the right Section leader almost immediately. We were always told not to prosletyze, to seek out new members, but to allow people to find their way to us, and I think that's wise. If people aren't, I think it has more to do with the individuals than the Society.
          >

          RB: OK, it seems that we disagree on these issues, so I don´t know if it´s meaningful to continue the discussion. I suggest we postpone this to some later time...



          >
          >
          > ******* This is a much more important point. It's not correct, I believe from my own direct experience, that there's what you can know and then there's "revelation", stuff that people say from something you can't experience and so you have to take on faith. The Philosophy of Freedom is a path that can enable anyone to recognize that he is already having clairvoyant experience when he thinks in pure thinking. When you say "I" to yourself you already go beyond Nature. Perhaps we can discuss this a bit more: it's the key to overcoming that dualism of "what I know/other".
          >

          RB: It would be interesting to discuss this. I suggest that you start, Starman, and then the rest of us will comment.

          // Robert B.
        • Durward Starman
          Robert wrote: I also think that Steiner had hopes of there being a powerful anthroposophical society, that could be a meeting place for esoterically interested
          Message 4 of 14 , Aug 19, 2010
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            Robert wrote: I also think that Steiner had hopes of there being a powerful anthroposophical society, that could be a meeting place for esoterically interested persons from different spiritual traditions. The activities would be everything from discussions, lectures, study groups, art...but also in the long run some kind of grade-based "mystery school" with ritualistic elements etc, where people seeking an esoteric schooling could find the guidance for this. Has this come about? Well, I think it may be quite different, depending on where you look, and I don´t have much of an overview. In Sweden, where I live there is - as in most European countries I guess - the traditional anthroposophic activities with education, art, biodynamic farming, medicine etc, but I don`t think that the teachings of anthroposophy is presented to the outside world in a way that will attract new people, and also that there is no good strategies for taking care of people who after all find their way to it. This is my judgement after studying how it is presented outwardly, including the websites that are in different ways connected to the anthro society / movement in Sweden... 



            Starman respionded:
             *******   As for the Anthroposophical Society/School of Spiritual Science---- for a long time, at Steiner's direction, its study material was stamped with a label that said its contents came from a source that had nothing to do with customary opinions and therefore that students would not discuss it with anyone unless they were also students in the School or had gained the equivalent knowledge in a specific way recognized by the School. So no, I don't think he wanted lots of people from so-called Rosicrucian orders, Masons, etc., descending on the Goetheanum; only if individuals recognized anthroposophy as worth far more than what they got from those other groups. In the School, we have our Mystery School whose ritual elements are inner, performed in meditation, along with the external acting-out of the Mystery Plays which pictures what you experience as you develop. And if people find anthroposophy and say, I want to work with farming or with children or with medicine, there is a Section in the Goetheanum that will assist any serious endeavors. It's on the internet now, of course. In fact, if you knew anyone wanting to work with any of these I could put him or her in touch with the right Section leader almost immediately. We were always told not to prosletyze, to seek out new members, but to allow people to find their way to us, and I think that's wise. If people aren't, I think it has more to do with the individuals than the Society.

            Robert replied:
            > RB: OK, it seems that we disagree on these issues, so I don´t know if it´s meaningful to continue the discussion. I suggest we postpone this to some later time...

            ******* OK, I'll answer your other question--- but first I'm curious why my response makes you want to drop the discussion. You said you thought Steiner wanted a powerful society with an esoteric center, and I said there is one, at the Goetheanum, and the School of Spiritual Science which anyone anywhere can join. That makes you drop the subject and just say "I disagree" with no further discussion? That's not a very encouraging sign.


            Starman wrote: 
            > ******* This is a much more important point. It's not correct, I believe from my own direct experience, that there's what you can know and then there's "revelation", stuff that people say from something you can't experience and so you have to take on faith. The Philosophy of Freedom is a path that can enable anyone to recognize that he is already having clairvoyant experience when he thinks in pure thinking. When you say "I" to yourself you already go beyond Nature. Perhaps we can discuss this a bit more: it's the key to overcoming that dualism of "what I know/other".
            >

            RB: It would be interesting to discuss this. I suggest that you start, Starman, and then the rest of us will comment.


            ******* This is a subject that really goes right to the heart of our movement and of anthroposophy itself. There are 100 different ways to approach this, so I'll just pick one. We human beings normally experience ourselves as centered in one point in space, in our bodies, and we feel we end at the boundaries of our skin. When we think and feel, we habitually imagine those are things going on within our skin. For the past several centuries, this has been the normal condition of mankind, and so, in our philosophy, the whole question of "How do I really know anything for certain about all those things out there?" has come to be the main question. As you may know, philosophers like Kant and so many others could not really answer this question in a positive way, so instead modern human beings are filled with doubt about their ability to know anything at all. People make rueful jokes about being stupid, about their thinking ability perhaps being worthless, even joke about whether they really exist or not. This is all pretty normal in our modern society.
             
               Except among mathematicians and a majority of scientists, that is. That's because they use their thinking ability to successfully deal with reality every day. One of the results of this is this technology I'm using to write this and you're using to read it. The entire Internet would be unthinkable without algorithms and mathematical/logical tools that go back to the ancient Greeks. Unfortunately, as Thomas Edison said, "5% of people think; 10% of the people think they think; and the other 85% would rather die than think." So the vast majority of people have no idea of the mathematical and logical basis of the technology they use everyday, and instead use it while contradicting their actual experience of the world by constantly doubting the ability of thinking to know anything.
             
               But our thinking proves by its success in dealing with reality that it is not something that is only within the boundaries of our skin. In its simplest form, when we do a mathematical equation or think through how the three inner angles of a triangle add up to 180°, we prove again and again that in our thinking a power is working which is the same power by which the world outside of us works.
             
              That was Dr. Steiner's starting point in his philosophy. He found lots of nay-sayers preaching that thinking was useless and the quest for truth hopeless, but only a man who had absolute confidence that in his creative thinking he experienced truth could be his guide -- -- Goethe. So Steiner wrote books of philosophy for 20 years, trying to awaken people to this contradiction of their own selves. His major work, the Philosophy of Freedom, was entirely designed to enable a person who really thought while he read it to wake up to what his thinking power really was. It is the action of the eternal human spirit. Not the mere "having of thought images", but true THINKING. Anyone who experiences this knows that he is not limited to the space within his skin while an outside world is just something 'beyond' him.
             
               It's not the same thing for me to simply summarize The Philosophy of Freedom as it is for a person to read it and work with it and come to these understandings yourself, but the only way we could use this medium to do that is if we took up the book and studied it over time. For now, I'll just state the main points. We think with the spirit, which is the same power that creates the entire world we experience; that's why our thinking has the power to change it, as with our technology turning night into day and summer into winter with electricity. But beyond these obvious facts about thinking we can verify with the external world, delving into what we actually do when we think shows that it is not at all something located in or limited to the brain or body. When we experience something through perception, if we can think, we seek to find the concept which matches that perception from our whole world of concepts, which is not material. This is spiritual activity, something we have to will -- -- -- if we or a creature that is not human simply stares at an object, it does not happen. We draw the correct concept from a world of concepts by an inner, spiritual faculty which Steiner calls intuition. And one of the most important concepts which we draw from the conceptual world is "I", the concept of ourselves. He demonstrates that self awareness originates in spiritual activity, and we know ourselves to be individuals because of a purely spiritual act of intuition; and throughout the remainder of his life he demonstrated what he preached, that this was only the first act of intuition of which human beings are capable: it can be developed further.
             
              So what is the source of anthroposophy, of Steiner's knowing things? Pure intuition, but not meaning by that word what people usually mean. Its source is the same as the intuition "I AM", which we all have from about the age of three on. This is divine knowledge.
             
              If people don't work on developing this, but instead just use their ordinary speculative knowledge comparing one thought-image to another, they will not reach the source. Then they'll believe that somebody else has some way of knowing something that, of course, is beyond them, or they'll believe that everybody is just as limited as they believe themselves to be. Someone once said, "Man is a God who has forgotten his origin and come to believe he is a beggar." That is our situation all too often with regard to our thinking consciousness. When you read a book of anthroposophy and REALLY THINK each word, you ARE experiencing what it says spiritually. This is what Steiner meant when he came to give an early cycle of lectures and said that anyone who REALLY read his book Theosophy could have given the same lectures.
             
              He always rejected dualism, for instance the idea that there's what we ordinary people can know, and then there's something beyond that which we can only have faith in (Bible, church etc.). Now you see why. This was also expressed by the old Christian mystics and philosophers by saying things like that there is the created, Nature, and then there is man, in which a spark of the Creator is also, enabling him to rise above merely being part of the created.
             
               Reading books or discussing anthroposophy is not of much value if we have no confidence in our thinking ability to know truth.
             
            Starman
              
             
              

          • robert.barnskog
            ... RB: Yes, it seemed to me that we mostly disagreed on the whole issue of the successfulness of anthroposophy . Or - to be more precise - I think we may
            Message 5 of 14 , Aug 20, 2010
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              > > RB: OK, it seems that we disagree on these issues, so I don´t know if it´s meaningful to continue the discussion. I suggest we postpone this to some later time...
              >
              > ******* OK, I'll answer your other question--- but first I'm curious why my response makes you want to drop the discussion. You said you thought Steiner wanted a powerful society with an esoteric center, and I said there is one, at the Goetheanum, and the School of Spiritual Science which anyone anywhere can join. That makes you drop the subject and just say "I disagree" with no further discussion? That's not a very encouraging sign.




              RB: Yes, it seemed to me that we mostly disagreed on the whole issue of the "successfulness of anthroposophy". Or - to be more precise - I think we may very well have agreed - but we spoke about different things and therefore spoke past each other...Here are some excerpts. What do you think yourself?

              ---------------------------------------
              Robert (RB) : "As I see it – mainly from an "outside" perspective – anthroposophy has not been
              very successful so far. You can speculate about the reasons for this. Maybe the
              traditional esoteric path described by Steiner (Knowledge of the higher worlds
              and its attainment…) has been too difficult, maybe anthroposophy has not let
              "society" in or maybe "society" has not let anthroposophy in…Or perhaps a
              combination of all that."

              Starman: "Second, having just returned from the Goetheanum, where a thousand people came for 4 days to see long, difficult presentations of all 4 of Steiner's Mystery Plays, I don't agree that anthroposophy has 'failed' at all. That judgement depends on what we think would be 'success'. Being known by millions of people, having lots of public discussion of it?"

              Robert : Anthroposophy -> Society ("reversed cultus"): When reading Steiner I think it is obvious that he intended his anthroposophy to be an impulse to be taken up by the "normal" outward society, regerdless of if the field of action was education, agriculture, medicine or something else, and not something that should be turned into various "alternative" movements.

              Starman: Well, I think Steiner wanted INDIVIDUALS to take up what he had to give out. If already-existing institutions had individuals who found their way to anthroposophical insight, then the given individuals might reform them: but if an individual finds he feels his spirit needs to create something that has no place in established institutions, then Steiner was VERY MUCH in favor of people starting "alternative" movements.

              Robert: In Sweden, where I live there is - as in most European countries I guess - the traditional anthroposophic activities with education, art, biodynamic farming, medicine etc, but I don`t think that the teachings of anthroposophy is presented to the outside world in a way that will attract new people, and also that there is no good strategies for taking care of people who after all find their way to it. This is my judgement after studying how it is presented outwardly, including the websites that are in different ways connected to the anthro society / movement in Sweden...

              Starman: In fact, if you knew anyone wanting to work with any of these I could put him or her in touch with the right Section leader almost immediately. We were always told not to prosletyze, to seek out new members, but to allow people to find their way to us, and I think that's wise. If people aren't, I think it has more to do with the individuals than the Society.

              Robert: In principle I am interested in all aspects of esoterics - also the purely spiritual - but since I`m not clairvayant it will in the final analysis be a question of either embarking on a spiritual schooling myself or believing what one authority (eg. Steiner) or other has to say. After all, how do you know that someone like Steiner is right?

              Starman: It's not correct, I believe from my own direct experience, that there's what you can know and then there's "revelation", stuff that people say from something you can't experience and so you have to take on faith.
              ----------------------------------------------

              RB: It may be possible to sort these things out, but
              communicating on the web is not easy. Also feelings are easily aroused when discussing the success of something we all are involved with...If there is some aspect of this, where you want to know how it looks from "my corner" then I´m more than willing to speak about it. For my part, I did not really start this discussion. I made a few statements about it, and then suggested to start discussing about the correspondances and polarities.




              > RB: It would be interesting to discuss this. I suggest that you start, Starman, and then the rest of us will comment.
              >
              >
              > ******* This is a subject that really goes right to the heart of our movement and of anthroposophy itself. There are 100 different ways to approach this, so I'll just pick one. We human beings normally experience ourselves as centered in one point in space, in our bodies, and we feel we end at the boundaries of our skin. When we think and feel, we habitually imagine those are things going on within our skin. For the past several centuries, this has been the normal condition of mankind, and so, in our philosophy, the whole question of "How do I really know anything for certain about all those things out there?" has come to be the main question. As you may know, philosophers like Kant and so many others could not really answer this question in a positive way, so instead modern human beings are filled with doubt about their ability to know anything at all. People make rueful jokes about being stupid, about their thinking ability perhaps being worthless, even joke about whether they really exist or not. This is all pretty normal in our modern society.
              >
              > Except among mathematicians and a majority of scientists, that is. That's because they use their thinking ability to successfully deal with reality every day. One of the results of this is this technology I'm using to write this and you're using to read it. The entire Internet would be unthinkable without algorithms and mathematical/logical tools that go back to the ancient Greeks. Unfortunately, as Thomas Edison said, "5% of people think; 10% of the people think they think; and the other 85% would rather die than think." So the vast majority of people have no idea of the mathematical and logical basis of the technology they use everyday, and instead use it while contradicting their actual experience of the world by constantly doubting the ability of thinking to know anything.
              >
              > But our thinking proves by its success in dealing with reality that it is not something that is only within the boundaries of our skin. In its simplest form, when we do a mathematical equation or think through how the three inner angles of a triangle add up to 180°, we prove again and again that in our thinking a power is working which is the same power by which the world outside of us works.
              >
              > That was Dr. Steiner's starting point in his philosophy. He found lots of nay-sayers preaching that thinking was useless and the quest for truth hopeless, but only a man who had absolute confidence that in his creative thinking he experienced truth could be his guide -- -- Goethe. So Steiner wrote books of philosophy for 20 years, trying to awaken people to this contradiction of their own selves. His major work, the Philosophy of Freedom, was entirely designed to enable a person who really thought while he read it to wake up to what his thinking power really was. It is the action of the eternal human spirit. Not the mere "having of thought images", but true THINKING. Anyone who experiences this knows that he is not limited to the space within his skin while an outside world is just something 'beyond' him.
              >
              > It's not the same thing for me to simply summarize The Philosophy of Freedom as it is for a person to read it and work with it and come to these understandings yourself, but the only way we could use this medium to do that is if we took up the book and studied it over time. For now, I'll just state the main points. We think with the spirit, which is the same power that creates the entire world we experience; that's why our thinking has the power to change it, as with our technology turning night into day and summer into winter with electricity. But beyond these obvious facts about thinking we can verify with the external world, delving into what we actually do when we think shows that it is not at all something located in or limited to the brain or body. When we experience something through perception, if we can think, we seek to find the concept which matches that perception from our whole world of concepts, which is not material. This is spiritual activity, something we have to will -- -- -- if we or a creature that is not human simply stares at an object, it does not happen. We draw the correct concept from a world of concepts by an inner, spiritual faculty which Steiner calls intuition. And one of the most important concepts which we draw from the conceptual world is "I", the concept of ourselves. He demonstrates that self awareness originates in spiritual activity, and we know ourselves to be individuals because of a purely spiritual act of intuition; and throughout the remainder of his life he demonstrated what he preached, that this was only the first act of intuition of which human beings are capable: it can be developed further.
              >
              > So what is the source of anthroposophy, of Steiner's knowing things? Pure intuition, but not meaning by that word what people usually mean. Its source is the same as the intuition "I AM", which we all have from about the age of three on. This is divine knowledge.
              >
              > If people don't work on developing this, but instead just use their ordinary speculative knowledge comparing one thought-image to another, they will not reach the source. Then they'll believe that somebody else has some way of knowing something that, of course, is beyond them, or they'll believe that everybody is just as limited as they believe themselves to be. Someone once said, "Man is a God who has forgotten his origin and come to believe he is a beggar." That is our situation all too often with regard to our thinking consciousness. When you read a book of anthroposophy and REALLY THINK each word, you ARE experiencing what it says spiritually. This is what Steiner meant when he came to give an early cycle of lectures and said that anyone who REALLY read his book Theosophy could have given the same lectures.
              >
              > He always rejected dualism, for instance the idea that there's what we ordinary people can know, and then there's something beyond that which we can only have faith in (Bible, church etc.). Now you see why. This was also expressed by the old Christian mystics and philosophers by saying things like that there is the created, Nature, and then there is man, in which a spark of the Creator is also, enabling him to rise above merely being part of the created.
              >
              > Reading books or discussing anthroposophy is not of much value if we have no confidence in our thinking ability to know truth.
              >
              > Starman
              >



              RB: OK. I think I understand the "Philosophy of Freedom (PoF)" so I assume we would agree that thoughts exists in a common spiritual world. What I don`t understand is the next step, i.e how you know WHAT thoughts or other "things" from the spirit / soul worlds that are correct, i.e that matches the reality that they are said to match. It seems that you consider higher faculties to be developed gradually (we are already on the "other side"), and that is also my impression from studying anthroposophy. But is it reliable on that level? Can you really testify to other people that you know this or that from the higher worlds based on this? If so, why are all the discussions on what is correct or not, that comes from different sources? Have they not done there PoF? For example you, yourself, seems to believe in some of Cayce´s statements, whereas you said in one of these forums that you were sceptic to the descriptions by Anne Catherine Emmerich regarding the crucifixion of Christ. Then there were other on the forum who were totally sceptic to Cayce, and then there are those who have confidence in A-C Emmerich. Robert Powell has written at least one book partly based on her visions, so he seems to have confidence in it, although I don`t know his view on the description of the crucifixion.


              // Robert B.
            • Durward Starman
              ...In principle I am interested in all aspects of esoterics - also the purely spiritual - but since I`m not clairvayant it will in the final analysis be a
              Message 6 of 14 , Aug 22, 2010
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                "...In principle I am interested in all aspects of esoterics - also the purely spiritual - but since I`m not clairvayant it will in the final analysis be a question of either embarking on a spiritual schooling myself or believing what one authority (eg. Steiner) or other has to say. After all, how do you know that someone like Steiner is right? He behaved exemplary: wrote "ordinary" works (Philosphy of Freedom etc), told the world about his methods used, showed his knowledge of most aspects of culture etc...but in the final analysis, how do you know that he was right when it comes to purely spiritual issues? For your own part you can always believe what you want, but it´s different when you shall explain to other people why e.g. Steiner is right and not someone else.


                 ******* This is a much more important point. It's not correct, I believe from my own direct experience, that there's what you can know and then there's "revelation", stuff that people say from something you can't experience and so you have to take on faith. The Philosophy of Freedom is a path that can enable anyone to recognize that he is already having clairvoyant experience when he thinks in pure thinking. When you say "I" to yourself you already go beyond Nature. Perhaps we can discuss this a bit more: it's the key to overcoming that dualism of "what I know/other".



                > RB: It would be interesting to discuss this. I suggest that you start, Starman, and then the rest of us will comment.
                >
                >
                > ******* This is a subject that really goes right to the heart of our movement and of anthroposophy itself. There are 100 different ways to approach this, so I'll just pick one. We human beings normally experience ourselves as centered in one point in space, in our bodies, and we feel we end at the boundaries of our skin. When we think and feel, we habitually imagine those are things going on within our skin. For the past several centuries, this has been the normal condition of mankind, and so, in our philosophy, the whole question of "How do I really know anything for certain about all those things out there?" has come to be the main question. As you may know, philosophers like Kant and so many others could not really answer this question in a positive way, so instead modern human beings are filled with doubt about their ability to know anything at all. People make rueful jokes about being stupid, about their thinking ability perhaps being worthless, even joke about whether they really exist or not. This is all pretty normal in our modern society.
                >
                > Except among mathematicians and a majority of scientists, that is. That's because they use their thinking ability to successfully deal with reality every day. One of the results of this is this technology I'm using to write this and you're using to read it. The entire Internet would be unthinkable without algorithms and mathematical/logical tools that go back to the ancient Greeks. Unfortunately, as Thomas Edison said, "5% of people think; 10% of the people think they think; and the other 85% would rather die than think." So the vast majority of people have no idea of the mathematical and logical basis of the technology they use everyday, and instead use it while contradicting their actual experience of the world by constantly doubting the ability of thinking to know anything.
                >
                > But our thinking proves by its success in dealing with reality that it is not something that is only within the boundaries of our skin. In its simplest form, when we do a mathematical equation or think through how the three inner angles of a triangle add up to 180°, we prove again and again that in our thinking a power is working which is the same power by which the world outside of us works.
                >
                > That was Dr. Steiner's starting point in his philosophy. He found lots of nay-sayers preaching that thinking was useless and the quest for truth hopeless, but only a man who had absolute confidence that in his creative thinking he experienced truth could be his guide -- -- Goethe. So Steiner wrote books of philosophy for 20 years, trying to awaken people to this contradiction of their own selves. His major work, the Philosophy of Freedom, was entirely designed to enable a person who really thought while he read it to wake up to what his thinking power really was. It is the action of the eternal human spirit. Not the mere "having of thought images", but true THINKING. Anyone who experiences this knows that he is not limited to the space within his skin while an outside world is just something 'beyond' him.
                >
                > It's not the same thing for me to simply summarize The Philosophy of Freedom as it is for a person to read it and work with it and come to these understandings yourself, but the only way we could use this medium to do that is if we took up the book and studied it over time. For now, I'll just state the main points. We think with the spirit, which is the same power that creates the entire world we experience; that's why our thinking has the power to change it, as with our technology turning night into day and summer into winter with electricity. But beyond these obvious facts about thinking we can verify with the external world, delving into what we actually do when we think shows that it is not at all something located in or limited to the brain or body. When we experience something through perception, if we can think, we seek to find the concept which matches that perception from our whole world of concepts, which is not material. This is spiritual activity, something we have to will -- -- -- if we or a creature that is not human simply stares at an object, it does not happen. We draw the correct concept from a world of concepts by an inner, spiritual faculty which Steiner calls intuition. And one of the most important concepts which we draw from the conceptual world is "I", the concept of ourselves. He demonstrates that self awareness originates in spiritual activity, and we know ourselves to be individuals because of a purely spiritual act of intuition; and throughout the remainder of his life he demonstrated what he preached, that this was only the first act of intuition of which human beings are capable: it can be developed further.
                >
                > So what is the source of anthroposophy, of Steiner's knowing things? Pure intuition, but not meaning by that word what people usually mean. Its source is the same as the intuition "I AM", which we all have from about the age of three on. This is divine knowledge.
                >
                > If people don't work on developing this, but instead just use their ordinary speculative knowledge comparing one thought-image to another, they will not reach the source. Then they'll believe that somebody else has some way of knowing something that, of course, is beyond them, or they'll believe that everybody is just as limited as they believe themselves to be. Someone once said, "Man is a God who has forgotten his origin and come to believe he is a beggar." That is our situation all too often with regard to our thinking consciousness. When you read a book of anthroposophy and REALLY THINK each word, you ARE experiencing what it says spiritually. This is what Steiner meant when he came to give an early cycle of lectures and said that anyone who REALLY read his book Theosophy could have given the same lectures.
                >
                > He always rejected dualism, for instance the idea that there's what we ordinary people can know, and then there's something beyond that which we can only have faith in (Bible, church etc.). Now you see why. This was also expressed by the old Christian mystics and philosophers by saying things like that there is the created, Nature, and then there is man, in which a spark of the Creator is also, enabling him to rise above merely being part of the created.
                >
                > Reading books or discussing anthroposophy is not of much value if we have no confidence in our thinking ability to know truth.
                >
                > Starman
                >


                RB: OK. I think I understand the "Philosophy of Freedom (PoF)" so I assume we would agree that thoughts exists in a common spiritual world. What I don`t understand is the next step, i.e how you know WHAT thoughts or other "things" from the spirit / soul worlds that are correct, i.e that matches the reality that they are said to match.
                 
                *******When you perceive an object in daily life, you match a concept to it and say it's a "book" or a "plant". How do you do THAT? Have you thought it through completely?
                   And I believe it would be more correct to say, rather than that "thoughts exists in a common spiritual world", that "we as thinkers participate in a common spiritual world." Thoughts are not like physical things, but rather are the immaterial objects of the spiritual activity of thinking. And I don't mean in some hypothetical mystical state of knowing, I mean in ordinary thinking.
                 
                 
                >>It seems that you consider higher faculties to be developed gradually (we are already on the "other side"), and that is also my impression from studying anthroposophy. But is it reliable on that level?
                 
                ******* It's the same thing as your judgment that the green thing in a pot on your desk is a plant. You could doubt that too. But you don't.
                 
                 
                >>Can you really testify to other people that you know this or that from the higher worlds based on this? If so, why are all the discussions on what is correct or not, that comes from different sources? Have they not done there PoF?
                 
                ******* If two people are psychologically free, they can only have a disagreement about any matter if one of them has not gone high enough. When we reach the highest level, we all perceive the same things. If those two people went through the Philosophy of Freedom together, they would find where one didn't go far enough.
                 
                 
                >>For example you, yourself, seems to believe in some of Cayce´s statements, whereas you said in one of these forums that you were sceptic to the descriptions by Anne Catherine Emmerich regarding the crucifixion of Christ. Then there were other on the forum who were totally sceptic to Cayce, and then there are those who have confidence in A-C Emmerich. Robert Powell has written at least one book partly based on her visions, so he seems to have confidence in it, although I don`t know his view on the description of the crucifixion.

                ******* If you'd mention something specific from the Cayce readings or from the mystic Emmerich I could address it. I don't know that I said I was skeptical about something specific she or Powell wrote but rather that I'm always skeptical about fervently emotional religious people and their visions. I have psychic impressions but I can stand apart from them and analyze them like a scientist. That's spiritual science.
                 
                   You said it's either a choice of embarking on the path of spiritual schooling or just having blind faith. Well, nothing is stopping you from embarking on that path. Once you are on it, your questions begin to become different than when you were standing back and not committing. For example, the anthroposophical idea of threefold man, or the four temperaments -- -- they're just ideas that you can say maybe were right but who knows. But if you work with the anthroposophical medicine and see how the three systems interact, or you become a teacher and see the four temperaments in the children, then it's no longer something that some guy said in a book. You start to see them for yourself, and I do mean SEE. You can doubt ideas, but not direct perceptions.
                 
                   In fact, remembering it's Goethe's birthday this week, he as a scientific visionary had an exchange with the skeptical Schiller about this very matter. From the study of the multitude of plants Goethe had seen the underlying structure of all plants and described it to Schiller. Schiller replied, well that's just an idea. Goethe responded, in that case I am happy to be seeing ideas with my eyes. He had overcome the dualism.
                 
                   He also wrote a nice little verse which I have it in English translation about committing to something.
                "That you can do, or think you can do, begin it!
                Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it!
                Only begin, and then the mind grows heated;
                Begin, and then the work will be completed."
                 
                -starman


                 
              • robert.barnskog
                ... RB: The plant is quite easy, because in this case the percept is always available, and you can see the concepts in the percepts once you have discovered
                Message 7 of 14 , Aug 23, 2010
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                  > >>It seems that you consider higher faculties to be developed gradually (we are already on the "other side"), and that is also my impression from studying anthroposophy. But is it reliable on that level?
                  >
                  > ******* It's the same thing as your judgment that the green thing in a pot on your desk is a plant. You could doubt that too. But you don't.


                  RB: The plant is quite easy, because in this case the percept is always available, and you can see the concepts in the percepts once you have discovered them. To take an example, I read the book "The plant between sun and earth" by Adams/Whicher earlier this summer. In this book it is said that plants often have a concave form when growing upwards, instead of a convex as could be imagined. Then there were pictures that were supposed to show this. I had never thought about this before, and could not see what they meant, no matter how much I looked at the pictures. Then –all of a sudden - I understood what they meant, and I saw it not only on all the pictures but also everywhere in the garden…It´s the same with the metamorphoses of Goethe, albeit some are more difficult to check since I don`t have all the plants at hand where you can see some of the "instances worth a 1000".
                  So the plants I think I can handle. After all this is precisely what I wrote about in my first message, since we see the plants here in the physical world. But how about this for example the description of the cosmic planes according to the Cosmo Conception (http://www.rosicrucian.com/images/rccen006.gif). This may very well be teached by Rosicrucian orders, even at correspondence courses. But do they really know this?
                  If we go back to what we really are discussing, it would be interesting to find out what you really mean. Are you saying that clairvoyance is of different degrees, and that we can develop enough of it when studying messages from spiritual scientists, mediums, mystics etc, so that we can verify or reject it? Somewhat in the same sense as we can view our own soul (feelings etc), but that we can`t really say that we see it as clearly as outer objects, until have learned to do so via esoteric training ?


                  >
                  > >>For example you, yourself, seems to believe in some of Cayce´s statements, whereas you said in one of these forums that you were sceptic to the descriptions by Anne Catherine Emmerich regarding the crucifixion of Christ. Then there were other on the forum who were totally sceptic to Cayce, and then there are those who have confidence in A-C Emmerich. Robert Powell has written at least one book partly based on her visions, so he seems to have confidence in it, although I don`t know his view on the description of the crucifixion.
                  >
                  > ******* If you'd mention something specific from the Cayce readings or from the mystic Emmerich I could address it. I don't know that I said I was skeptical about something specific she or Powell wrote but rather that I'm always skeptical about fervently emotional religious people and their visions. I have psychic impressions but I can stand apart from them and analyze them like a scientist. That's spiritual science.
                  >

                  RB: No I can´t easily find the messages again, since there seems to be no search function here on Yahoo. Is there one? Anyway, it does not matter, I just wanted to illustrate that there are disagreements on spiritual statements even among anthroposphists.


                  > You said it's either a choice of embarking on the path of spiritual schooling or just having blind faith. Well, nothing is stopping you from embarking on that path.


                  RB: Well, how can you be so sure about this? There may be several things that stops me from doing that even if I wanted to. I think all who studies anthroposophy actively are going a path – they may intend it or not - it´s more a question of the intensity of it. For my part I was thinking of the path described by Steiner is "How to attain knowledge of…", where you are to do different exercises. According to Steiner only a part of this path was described there, so I can`t really judge it, but based on my feeling think that such thing are not to be taken lightly and I would like to have a teacher, just as when doing other potentially dangerous thing as e.g. learning to fly an airplane or learning to parachuting.

                  Starman: Once you are on it, your questions begin to become different than when you were standing back and not committing. For example, the anthroposophical idea of threefold man, or the four temperaments -- -- they're just ideas that you can say maybe were right but who knows.


                  RB: The threefold man is physical so this also falls under what I wrote about in my first message. In fact I think it would be impossible to work out all these polarities and correspondances that I asked about when "standing back and not committing"! I also assume that you would start to see these ideas in the way Goethe did with the plants, colors, anatomy and his other interests, although of course Goethe was a kind of master of this, at least in his own time. The four temperaments belong to the human soul, so these are also quite near at hand.



                  Starman: But if you work with the anthroposophical medicine and see how the three systems interact, or you become a teacher and see the four temperaments in the children, then it's no longer something that some guy said in a book. You start to see them for yourself, and I do mean SEE. You can doubt ideas, but not direct perceptions.


                  RB: No, of course you should not doubt it. It would be interesting to hear how you see the temperaments, if it is possible to do?
                  The background for me starting to think about this with "things you can check and things you have to take on faith", was when I thought about if I should in some way become active in the anthroposophical society that is nearest to where I live. As I wrote, there is not an active group in Linköping where I live, but there is – in fact – one in Norrköping 40 km away, that is possible for me to go to if there are activities to take part in. I looked in their program of activities, hoping to find some kind of starting-course, that I could attend, and that other people who were new to anthroposophy could attend . Not that I was new to anthroposophy – this was earlier this year – but for lack of better ideas it could be good to take such a course to start to learn to know the people that were active there. I did not find what I was looking for, which caused me to think what it really would take to hold such a course, and what was lacking in how anthroposophy was presented to the world outside it. I came to the conclusion that what was to be presented could be a summary of what one or other authority had said, but – more importantly -what the members themselves had experienced. This applies not only to anthroposophy, but to all spiritual movements…the Theosophical movement, the Rosicrucian orders etc. If such material was compiled and made available in courses and on the web, I think the whole thing would stay alive, and attract even more people. If the members have higher experiences these can be spoken of, otherwise the physical world can perhaps be a good start. It was just a starting point I came up with, more ideas are welcome…

                  // Robert B.
                • Durward Starman
                  ... RB: Well, how can you be so sure about this? There may be several things that stops me from doing that even if I wanted to... *******The doctor stressed we
                  Message 8 of 14 , Aug 25, 2010
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                    > >>It seems that you consider higher faculties to be developed gradually (we are already on the "other side"), and that is also my impression from studying anthroposophy... it would be interesting to find out what you really mean. Are you saying that clairvoyance is of different degrees, and that we can develop enough of it when studying messages from spiritual scientists, mediums, mystics etc, so that we can verify or reject it? Somewhat in the same sense as we can view our own soul (feelings etc), but that we can`t really say that we see it as clearly as outer objects, until have learned to do so via esoteric training ?

                    *******That's a good enough way to put it, yes.


                    > You said it's either a choice of embarking on the path of spiritual schooling or just having blind faith. Well, nothing is stopping you from embarking on that path.

                    RB: Well, how can you be so sure about this? There may be several things that stops me from doing that even if I wanted to...
                     
                    *******The doctor stressed we need devote no more than 5 minutes a day to it. Anyone can find 5 minutes a day.
                     


                    Starman: Once you are on it, your questions begin to become different than when you were standing back and not committing. For example, the anthroposophical idea of threefold man, or the four temperaments -- -- they're just ideas that you can say maybe were right but who knows. 
                    But if you work with the anthroposophical medicine and see how the three systems interact, or you become a teacher and see the four temperaments in the children, then it's no longer something that some guy said in a book. You start to see them for yourself, and I do mean SEE. You can doubt ideas, but not direct perceptions.

                    RB: No, of course you should not doubt it. It would be interesting to hear how you see the temperaments, if it is possible to do?

                     
                    ******* There are two ways in which you "see" them, one which can be caught by a camera and one which cannot. The sense-perceptible things are, for instance, that the fiery or choleric temperament frequently makes people very small and compact in space, while the phlegmatic temperament makes people put on weight easily. But beyond that, the reason why choleric temperaments aren't very large physically is that they have a high metabolism and are constantly burning up their food, because everything we call "fire" is present in them to a high degree. In fact, this is the starting point for really developing science towards spiritual science, tackling the etheric world instead of only the physical: there are four main ethers. (The reason why the ether was thrown out of science was the Michelson Morley experiment which disproved a single stationary ether; but it is neither single nor stationary, but rather several kinds of ethers in constant movement. I recommend starting with Guenther Wachsmuth's "The Etheric Formative Forces in Cosmos Earth and Man".) What the ancients called "Fire" anthroposophy calls the Warmth Ether, and the choleric temperament has a lot of this in the etheric body. Red hair and reddish skin are common among Caucasians, but as I said, besides what can be photographed, there is a "fieriness" in these people, which anyone with normal sense perceives--- as when you say a person is a "fiery" speaker.
                     
                       Fire and air, which we call the warmth ether and the Light Ether, are both masculine or outward-going, so these people are active rather than passive. Fire symbolically means the will, and choleric people have lots of it; the air temperament (which we today call the sanguine) is also active but mentally, with the constant flow of ideas, rather than so much of the will. This temperament is seen in most children, where they are active mentally but don't stay very long on any one perception or subject, instead quickly jumping to another and another, like a sun beam bouncing around a room. 
                     
                       Very different are the more passive water and earth temperaments. You could start by saying the masculine ones are the talkers, while the feminine ones are the listeners. Having a lot of the Chemical, Sound or Number Ether (which the ancients symbolically called Water) makes a person like to have things reverberate, echo and re-echo within one; it is contemplative rather than active, the opposite of the fiery temperament. The phlegmatics like to ponder things and return to them again and again, rather than experiencing them once and moving right on to action like the choleric. There's a special liking for cycles, for doing things at the same time of day every day, the same time of year every year, and so on. They are inward oriented rather than outward-oriented like the fiery and airy people, and so are mysteries to the latter.
                     
                       Still more mysterious in a way is the earthy or melancholic temperament, which is oriented more toward the actual sense perceptions rather than the reverberation of them like the phlegmatic, to sense rather than feeling. They have a preponderance of the Life Ether, which is what individualizes everything in our material world and which works especially strongly in the head; but everything which is a finished material manifestation is already beginning to die, and the melancholic feels these death forces too acutely. Hence the word melancholy.
                     
                      A person reading this e-mail or reading about the four temperaments in any form might be skeptical or form all sorts of judgments about how real they may be. This is completely irrelevant to anyone with actual experience working with children, who show their temperaments quite clearly all the time. As we grow up, we learn to hide them a little bit, but they can become objects of direct perception for anyone who observes young people. The class clown in any group of children is a choleric, the morose sulking one is a melancholic, and they haven't learned to hide it yet. It may be a long time before physical scientists who we all think are so smart climb off their high horses and see this in their children or other people's children, but thankfully no one needs to know about Avogadro's number or the Fleming left hand rule in order to see it for themselves. All anthroposophy does is give us a terminology to interpret what everybody can perceive directly.

                    Starman

                  • robert.barnskog
                    Starman, ... RB: OK, good. Then I`m beginning to understand what you mean. ... RB: Yes, although in practice I think most people who engage in such activities
                    Message 9 of 14 , Aug 27, 2010
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                      Starman,

                      > > >>It seems that you consider higher faculties to be developed gradually (we are already on the "other side"), and that is also my impression from studying anthroposophy... it would be interesting to find out what you really mean. Are you saying that clairvoyance is of different degrees, and that we can develop enough of it when studying messages from spiritual scientists, mediums, mystics etc, so that we can verify or reject it? Somewhat in the same sense as we can view our own soul (feelings etc), but that we can`t really say that we see it as clearly as outer objects, until have learned to do so via esoteric training ?
                      >
                      > *******That's a good enough way to put it, yes.


                      RB: OK, good. Then I`m beginning to understand what you mean.



                      >
                      > > You said it's either a choice of embarking on the path of spiritual schooling or just having blind faith. Well, nothing is stopping you from embarking on that path.
                      >
                      > RB: Well, how can you be so sure about this? There may be several things that stops me from doing that even if I wanted to...
                      >
                      > *******The doctor stressed we need devote no more than 5 minutes a day to it. Anyone can find 5 minutes a day.


                      RB: Yes, although in practice I think most people who engage in such activities also want to read books and discuss with others, which takes more time. I was, however, not so much thinking of lack of time, but of possible moralic and character failures that a person might have. An the other hand you can perhaps say that working with these is also part of the path...



                      > RB: No, of course you should not doubt it. It would be interesting to hear how you see the temperaments, if it is possible to do?
                      >
                      >
                      > ******* There are two ways in which you "see" them, one which can be caught by a camera and one which cannot. The sense-perceptible things are, for instance, that the fiery or choleric temperament frequently makes people very small and compact in space, while the phlegmatic temperament makes people put on weight easily. But beyond that, the reason why choleric temperaments aren't very large physically is that they have a high metabolism and are constantly burning up their food, because everything we call "fire" is present in them to a high degree. In fact, this is the starting point for really developing science towards spiritual science, tackling the etheric world instead of only the physical: there are four main ethers. (The reason why the ether was thrown out of science was the Michelson Morley experiment which disproved a single stationary ether; but it is neither single nor stationary, but rather several kinds of ethers in constant movement. I recommend starting with Guenther Wachsmuth's "The Etheric Formative Forces in Cosmos Earth and Man".) What the ancients called "Fire" anthroposophy calls the Warmth Ether, and the choleric temperament has a lot of this in the etheric body. Red hair and reddish skin are common among Caucasians, but as I said, besides what can be photographed, there is a "fieriness" in these people, which anyone with normal sense perceives--- as when you say a person is a "fiery" speaker.
                      >
                      > Fire and air, which we call the warmth ether and the Light Ether, are both masculine or outward-going, so these people are active rather than passive. Fire symbolically means the will, and choleric people have lots of it; the air temperament (which we today call the sanguine) is also active but mentally, with the constant flow of ideas, rather than so much of the will. This temperament is seen in most children, where they are active mentally but don't stay very long on any one perception or subject, instead quickly jumping to another and another, like a sun beam bouncing around a room.
                      >
                      > Very different are the more passive water and earth temperaments. You could start by saying the masculine ones are the talkers, while the feminine ones are the listeners. Having a lot of the Chemical, Sound or Number Ether (which the ancients symbolically called Water) makes a person like to have things reverberate, echo and re-echo within one; it is contemplative rather than active, the opposite of the fiery temperament. The phlegmatics like to ponder things and return to them again and again, rather than experiencing them once and moving right on to action like the choleric. There's a special liking for cycles, for doing things at the same time of day every day, the same time of year every year, and so on. They are inward oriented rather than outward-oriented like the fiery and airy people, and so are mysteries to the latter.
                      >
                      > Still more mysterious in a way is the earthy or melancholic temperament, which is oriented more toward the actual sense perceptions rather than the reverberation of them like the phlegmatic, to sense rather than feeling. They have a preponderance of the Life Ether, which is what individualizes everything in our material world and which works especially strongly in the head; but everything which is a finished material manifestation is already beginning to die, and the melancholic feels these death forces too acutely. Hence the word melancholy.
                      >
                      > A person reading this e-mail or reading about the four temperaments in any form might be skeptical or form all sorts of judgments about how real they may be. This is completely irrelevant to anyone with actual experience working with children, who show their temperaments quite clearly all the time. As we grow up, we learn to hide them a little bit, but they can become objects of direct perception for anyone who observes young people. The class clown in any group of children is a choleric, the morose sulking one is a melancholic, and they haven't learned to hide it yet. It may be a long time before physical scientists who we all think are so smart climb off their high horses and see this in their children or other people's children, but thankfully no one needs to know about Avogadro's number or the Fleming left hand rule in order to see it for themselves.


                      RB: Thanks for this description! I`ll use it to interpret what I have experienced over the years, and come back when I have something to say.



                      All anthroposophy does is give us a terminology to interpret what everybody can perceive directly.
                      >
                      > Starman


                      RB: Yes! Although for me it has been less obvious when you looks at "parts" of reality that are more far off than children and their temperaments. Are you of the opinion that all of us - in fact - experience everything, and that what the spiritual teachings really does is that they gives names (concepts) to structure the experience and excercises to strengthen the experience (perception)?


                      // Robert B.
                    • Durward Starman
                      All anthroposophy does is give us a terminology to interpret what everybody can perceive directly. ... RB: Yes! Although for me it has been less obvious when
                      Message 10 of 14 , Aug 27, 2010
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                        All anthroposophy does is give us a terminology to interpret what everybody can perceive directly.
                        >
                        > Starman

                        RB: Yes! Although for me it has been less obvious when you looks at "parts" of reality that are more far off than children and their temperaments. Are you of the opinion that all of us - in fact - experience everything, and that what the spiritual teachings really does is that they gives names (concepts) to structure the experience and excercises to strengthen the experience (perception)?

                        *******Ways to understand what we're really already experiencing and to develop our abilities to experience everything more deeply, yes. For instance, in our thinking the universe's "thinking" is hidden, the World-Thoughts upon which the universe is fashioned--- in other words, within the subjective the objective is there, but we have to seek for it because from the time we're children we're taught to ignore it, to devalue our inner experiences. Only external "proofs" are considered valid by our modern scientific culture, and nothing spiritual can be known externally. So we're not given the tools to understand the inner planes.
                         
                           Lots of people for a century now have been having experiences of the Christ within, for instance, but without spiritual science they cannot connect this experience to their knowledge of everything else, so they largely have only the Bible to turn to, which has preserved only a fraction of what its authors experienced in the spirit and also was for men of a previous era. So they become fundamentalists and frequently enemies of anthroposophy, where anthroposophy could actually give them the language they need to digest the Christ-experience.

                        Starman
                        www.DrStarman.com


                         


                         
                        Starman,

                         It would be interesting to hear how you see the temperaments, if it is possible to do?
                        >
                        >
                        > ******* There are two ways in which you "see" them, one which can be caught by a camera and one which cannot. The sense-perceptible things are, for instance, that the fiery or choleric temperament frequently makes people very small and compact in space, while the phlegmatic temperament makes people put on weight easily. But beyond that, the reason why choleric temperaments aren't very large physically is that they have a high metabolism and are constantly burning up their food, because everything we call "fire" is present in them to a high degree. In fact, this is the starting point for really developing science towards spiritual science, tackling the etheric world instead of only the physical: there are four main ethers. (The reason why the ether was thrown out of science was the Michelson Morley experiment which disproved a single stationary ether; but it is neither single nor stationary, but rather several kinds of ethers in constant movement. I recommend starting with Guenther Wachsmuth's "The Etheric Formative Forces in Cosmos Earth and Man".) What the ancients called "Fire" anthroposophy calls the Warmth Ether, and the choleric temperament has a lot of this in the etheric body. Red hair and reddish skin are common among Caucasians, but as I said, besides what can be photographed, there is a "fieriness" in these people, which anyone with normal sense perceives--- as when you say a person is a "fiery" speaker.
                        >
                        > Fire and air, which we call the warmth ether and the Light Ether, are both masculine or outward-going, so these people are active rather than passive. Fire symbolically means the will, and choleric people have lots of it; the air temperament (which we today call the sanguine) is also active but mentally, with the constant flow of ideas, rather than so much of the will. This temperament is seen in most children, where they are active mentally but don't stay very long on any one perception or subject, instead quickly jumping to another and another, like a sun beam bouncing around a room.
                        >
                        > Very different are the more passive water and earth temperaments. You could start by saying the masculine ones are the talkers, while the feminine ones are the listeners. Having a lot of the Chemical, Sound or Number Ether (which the ancients symbolically called Water) makes a person like to have things reverberate, echo and re-echo within one; it is contemplative rather than active, the opposite of the fiery temperament. The phlegmatics like to ponder things and return to them again and again, rather than experiencing them once and moving right on to action like the choleric. There's a special liking for cycles, for doing things at the same time of day every day, the same time of year every year, and so on. They are inward oriented rather than outward-oriented like the fiery and airy people, and so are mysteries to the latter.
                        >
                        > Still more mysterious in a way is the earthy or melancholic temperament, which is oriented more toward the actual sense perceptions rather than the reverberation of them like the phlegmatic, to sense rather than feeling. They have a preponderance of the Life Ether, which is what individualizes everything in our material world and which works especially strongly in the head; but everything which is a finished material manifestation is already beginning to die, and the melancholic feels these death forces too acutely. Hence the word melancholy.
                        >
                        > A person reading this e-mail or reading about the four temperaments in any form might be skeptical or form all sorts of judgments about how real they may be. This is completely irrelevant to anyone with actual experience working with children, who show their temperaments quite clearly all the time. As we grow up, we learn to hide them a little bit, but they can become objects of direct perception for anyone who observes young people. The class clown in any group of children is a choleric, the morose sulking one is a melancholic, and they haven't learned to hide it yet. It may be a long time before physical scientists who we all think are so smart climb off their high horses and see this in their children or other people's children, but thankfully no one needs to know about Avogadro's number or the Fleming left hand rule in order to see it for themselves.

                        RB: Thanks for this description! I`ll use it to interpret what I have experienced over the years, and come back when I have something to say.



                         
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