When I heard “Original Sin” mentioned I always wondered what it meant. I heard some longhaired explanations, but the only understandable was, that it was the sin we had to do because we were born on Earth, like killing for food, using aggressions in fight for life, and so forth. But still, I didn’t understand it fully, the problem was to understand what it precisely was we had inherited, and from where.
The original sin were our first karma.
What were that original sin in practice? When we started incarnating as humans, we were like animals with all the desires and ‘habits’ of animals. These habits consists of rules telling the animals how to act wisely in the world, in their natural habitat. But for man it became a hindrance, as our surroundings change constantly, we need to act wisely in the now, where the rules fight change through feelings like fear, anger, and so forth. These rules were our inherent karma we had to resolve.
Karma came from below, dharma from above.
So, the original sin is not a sin we made, we inherited it from being an animal, who were a creation of the gods, so the gods so to speak owe us, are in debt to us.
Karma as Rules
Our karma are expressed through rules, our opinions, that are based in previous not understood experience, in fear of the future. When we are children we learn the basics of life, and what we don’t understand fully, we create rules for, like: “when they begin drinking it’s my fault, so I should hide.” But when the child understand, it becomes wisdom, such misunderstandings dissolve. With time we put layers around these first rules and they become more and more convoluted, and through time we try to solve these riddles, try to unpack these packages, one layer after each other, like peeling an onion, until we open the last, and nothing is left.
The older the souls the more the children understands, old souls can even have difficulties learning rules, not accepting anything they can’t understand, and that may give problems with the adults and the other children. The first many years we recapitulate the synthesis of the experience of our previous lives, we take our karma and wisdom on us again. We solve our karma when we understand the rules or opinions we follow, and transforms them to wisdom. Thereafter we know, we don’t follow rules unconsciously any more. When there are no rules/opinions any more, we are living in the now, the now tells us what we need, in Goethean sense as in buddhistic sense. Christ came to take the original sin on him, as it was not our fault, and it meant that he would help us to bear the sin, to resolve it, and he did that when Jesus entered the death world, the astral world, went where no higher god had been before. The light of an “I” entered the astral world for the first time, previously an “I” had not been lower than the soul world. The original sin is related to grace, as grace is the gods gift as we weren’t ourselves responsible for the original sin.
Rudolf Steiner on Sin and Grace:
In human evolution there is something that is related to this as the North Pole is related to the South Pole. This sin which, in its consequences, is inherited, which represents sin in man of which he is not guilty in the real sense, must be counterbalanced by the possibility of re-ascent, also without merit of his own. Just as without guilt of his own, man was obliged to fall, so he must be able to re-ascend without merit of his own — that is to say, without full merit of his own. We fell without being ourselves guilty and we must therefore be able to ascend without merit of our own. That is the necessary polarity. Otherwise we should be obliged to remain below in the physical-material world. Just as we must place at the beginning of our evolution a guilt which man did not himself incur, so at the end of evolution we must place a gift that is bestowed upon him without merit on his part. These two things belong together. The best way of understanding why it is so is to think of the following.
What a man does in ordinary life proceeds from the impulses of his feelings, his emotions, his natural urges, his desires; he gets angry and does certain things out of anger; or he loves in the ordinary way and his actions are prompted by this emotion. There is one word only that can aptly express what man does in this way. You will all admit that in what a man does out of passions, out of anger, or out of ordinary love, there is an element that defies all abstract definition. Only a prosaic, academic brain would attempt to define what actually underlies some particular action of a human being. Yet there is a word which indicates the antecedents of the actions of a man in ordinary life — it is the word ‘Personality’. This word embraces all the indefinable factors. When we have really understood a man’s personality, then we may be able to judge why it was that he developed this or that passion, this or that desire, or whatever it may be. Everything that is done out of these impulses bears a personal character. But we are so entangled in material life when we act out of our impulses, desires and passions! Our ego is submerged in the ocean of the physical-material world, is anything but free when it follows the dictates of anger, of passions, or also of love in the ordinary sense. The ego is unfree because it is ensnared in the toils of anger, of passion and the like. … Therefore to speak of the existence of Original Sin and of Grace does not denote misunderstanding of the idea of karma. For in speaking of the idea of karma we are speaking of the reincarnation of the ego in the different earth-lives. Karma is inconceivable without the presence of the ego: Original Sin and Grace, impulses which lie below the surface of karma, [are] in the astral body. We can say with truth that human karma was first brought about because man had burdened himself with Original Sin. Karma flows through the incarnations and before and after there are happenings which introduce and subsequently expurgate it. Before karma — Original Sin; and after — the victory of the Christ Impulse, the fullness of Grace.
– See more at: The Concepts of Original Sin and Grace