Re: [steiner] Introduction to Anthroposophy
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>Dr. Starman, I appreciate your synopsis. One thing that really interested me in reading Esoteric Science was the notion of the human mineral body. I have always had a spiritual kinship with rocks. Steiner explains that, just as rocks are the manifestation of physical forces, our physical body represents a system of forces. These forces formed our mineral body, and the flesh was filled in secondarily. I can really feel this in myself.I have also sadly pondered the dramatically early onset of puberty in kids these days. It is not uncommon to hear of eight year old girls getting their periods .. when they have scarcely lost any baby teeth! I would imagine that a soul like this needs very loving protection.Thanks again for inviting me to the list :-).-------Original Message-------From: firstname.lastname@example.orgDate: Saturday, June 15, 2002 02:18:23 PMSubject: [steiner] Introduction to Anthroposophy
> I amcurrently intested in the basics like understanding the four parts to the human being; the four incarnations of earth; the significance of Christ in Anthroposophy; nutritional implications of Anthroposophy; the four ethers; four temperaments; the notion of threefoldness vs. duality .. basically the foundations of an anthroposophical world view.
*******OK, I'll start with the first one. There are many ways to approach this; since you're in Teacher Training, I'll try to orient it towards that. The human being is seen in spiritual science as having many parts, but the 4 lowest are a good basis for starting to understand us (it was called the 'sacred Tetrad' by the Pythagoreans). We have a physical body, which is all we can see with the senses, then a body of life-forces that forms this matter into living forms. (It's forces in certain patterns, like magnetic fields are. It can be understood by thinking not very far from material pictures.) Then we have an astral body, which is what many religions call the soul: this is what we have our emotions with, desires, wishes, impulses. Then the 4th part is the Ego or "I". This is what we do truly conscious thinking and willing with.
The first 7 years we are primarily developing the physical body (the senses, the muscles thru gymnastics, etc.), and then we develop the etheric body in the second 7 years. This etheric body is what "remembers" the form of the living body, so is the seat of memory. This is why teaching children to memorize (numbers, alphabet etc.) is so bad in the first 6 years, because it forces us to use etheric forces that are not ready for use. It's a different matter if a child teaches itself, for instance, to read; but drilling small children in rote memorization ages them prematurely. Memorization belongs to grade school age, after 6. (You can find evidence of the great change in consciousness we go thru at 6-7, apart from the Waldorf movement, in the work of Piaget and all those who have repeated his researches into the development of consciousness in children.)
Anbout 12-14 is when the astral body becomes active. Just as when the etheric body does, we have the change of teeth, so the sign of the working of the astral body is puberty. It comes earlier and earlier now because of this premature aging of children caused by bad education. The true Ego of a human being is there but still immersed in 'astral forces' of impulse, wish etc., till about 21. This is why the old voting age or age of reasoned consent was 21.
We have the physical body in common with all visible nature, even the minerals. All living things have an etheric body: plants are physical and etheric bodies. Animals also have an astral body, but only Man has the Ego that makes him not only conscious but SELF-conscious. This is the great difference between Man and animal that Darwinism overlooks.
So 'you' are an Ego-being within 3 lower bodies. We develop each of these bodies in 7-year cycles and then at 21 begin to develop the Ego.
Now, we got each of these 3 lower bodies 'donated' to us for our use in each of 3 previous worlds, in which we passed thru a mineral, a plant and an animal state of consciousness but in different forms than present-day Nature. Steiner called these Saturn, Sun and Moon. So in a sense, we're repeating the Saturn state of our world in the earliest part of life, then the Sun state in grade school and the 'Moon' as teens.
That's a start, though I'm sure you've heard most of it already; but it can stimulate discussion and asking questions, I'm sure.
To Be Continued....
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- View SourceIn a message dated Mon, 17 Jun 2002 9:10:04 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ashley.case@... writes:
> Dr. Starman, I appreciate your synopsis. One thing that really interested me in reading Esoteric Science was the notion of the human mineral body. I have always had a spiritual kinship with rocks. Steiner explains that, just as rocks are the manifestation of physical forces, our physical body represents a system of forces. These forces formed our mineral*******Yes, and that's the difference between the physical body and the MINERAL body. Beings can have the first without the second.
> body, and the flesh was filled in secondarily...
And incidentally, the highest world, that of the stars, works down into the mineral. This is why every crystal is an image of the entire cosmos.