Archive for category Buddhism
It’s one of the best descriptions on the subject, on what each chakra is and does in us at our development, and how our life influences the chakras.
This is not an incentive to use some of the methods that are elsewhere in the book, most readers of this have no need for these methods, fate are giving us what we need, only one method may be of interest to all, and that is contemplation, but most will intuitively use it, as a ‘remembrance’ from earlier lives.
Lotus Flowers – Chakras
The further the student advances in his inner development, the greater will be the organic differentiation introduced into his astral body. The latter is confused and undifferentiated in the case of a person of undeveloped inner life; yet the clairvoyant can perceive even the unorganized astral body as a figure standing out distinctly from its environment. It extends from the centre of the head to the middle of the physical body, and appears like an independent body possessing certain organs.
These organs, now to be considered, are apparent to the clairvoyant near the following parts of the physical body:
- the first between the eyes;
- the second near the larynx;
- the third in the region of the heart;
- the fourth in the so-called pit of the stomach;
- the fifth and sixth are situated in the abdomen.
These organs are technically known as wheels, chakrams or lotus flowers. They are so called on account of their likeness to wheels or flowers, but of course it should be clearly understood that such an expression is not to be applied more literally than when the lungs are called wings. Just as there is no question of wings in the case of lungs, so, too, in the case of the lotus flowers, the expression must be taken as a figurative comparison.
In undeveloped persons these lotus flowers are dark in colour, motionless and inert. In the clairvoyant, however, they are luminous, mobile, and of variegated colour. Something of this kind applies to the medium, though in a different way; but this question need not here be pursued.
Now when the student begins his exercises, the lotus flowers become brighter; later on they begin to revolve. When this occurs, clairvoyance begins. For these flowers are the sense organs of the soul, and their revolutions express the fact that the clairvoyant perceives supersensibly. No one can perceive the supersensible until he has developed his astral senses in this way.
Thanks to the spiritual organ situated in the vicinity of the larynx, it becomes possible to survey clairvoyantly the thoughts and mentality of other beings, and to obtain a deeper insight into the true laws of natural phenomena.
The organ situated near the heart permits of clairvoyant knowledge of the sentiments and disposition of other souls. When developed, this organ also makes it possible to observe certain deeper forces in animals and plants.
By means of the organ in the so-called pit of the stomach, knowledge is acquired of the talents and capacities of souls; by its means, too, the part played by animals, plants, stones, metals, atmospheric phenomena and so on in the household of Nature, becomes apparent.
The organ in the vicinity of the larynx has sixteen petals or spokes; the one in the region of the heart twelve, and the one in the pit of the stomach ten.
Thanks to the spiritual organ situated in the vicinity of the larynx, it becomes possible to survey clairvoyantly the thoughts and mentality of other beings, and to obtain a deeper insight into the true laws of natural phenomena.
The organ situated near the heart permits of clairvoyant knowledge of the sentiments and disposition of other souls. When developed, this organ also makes it possible to observe certain deeper forces in animals and plants.
By means of the organ in the so-called pit of the stomach, knowledge is acquired of the talents and capacities of souls; by its means, too, the part played by animals, plants, stones, metals, atmospheric phenomena and so on in the household of Nature, becomes apparent.
The organ in the vicinity of the larynx has sixteen petals or spokes; the one in the region of the heart twelve, and the one in the pit of the stomach ten.
Now certain activities of the soul are connected with the development of these organs, and anyone devoting himself to them in a certain definite way, contributes something to the development of the corresponding organs.
The 16-petalled Lotus
In the 16-petalled lotus, eight of its sixteen petals were developed during an earlier stage of human evolution, in a remote past. Man himself contributed nothing to this development; he received them as a gift from nature, at a time when his consciousness was in a dull, dreamy condition.
At that stage of human evolution, they were in active use, but the manner of their activity was only compatible with that dull state of consciousness. As consciousness became clearer and brighter, the petals became obscured and ceased their activity.
Man himself can now develop the remaining eight petals by conscious exercises, and thereby the whole lotus flower becomes luminous and mobile. The acquisition of certain faculties depends on the development of each one of the sixteen petals.
Yet, as already shown, only eight can be consciously developed; the remainder then appear of their own accord.
The development proceeds in the following manner. The student must first apply himself with care and attention to certain functions of the soul, hitherto exercised by him in a careless and inattentive manner. There are eight such functions:
– The first is the way in which ideas and conceptions are acquired. In this respect people usually allow themselves to be led by chance alone. They see or hear one thing or another and form their ideas accordingly. While this is the case, the sixteen petals of the lotus flower remain ineffective. It is only when the student begins to take his self-education in hand, in this respect, that the petals become effective. His ideas and conceptions must be guarded; each single idea should acquire significance for him; he should see in it a definite message instructing him concerning the things of the outer world, and he should derive no satisfaction from ideas devoid of such significance. He must govern his mental life so that it becomes a true mirror of the outer world, and direct his effort to the exclusion of incorrect ideas from his soul.
– The second of these functions is concerned with the control of resolutions. The student must not resolve upon even the most trifling act, without well-founded and thorough consideration. Thoughtless and meaningless actions should be foreign to his nature. He should have well-considered grounds for everything he does, and abstain from everything for which no significant motive is forthcoming.
– The third function concerns speech. The student should utter no word that is devoid of sense and meaning; all talking for the sake of talking draws him away from his path. He must avoid the usual kind of conversation, with its promiscuous discussion of indiscriminately varied topics. This does not imply his preclusion from intercourse with his fellows. It is precisely in such intercourse that his conversation should develop to significance. He is ready to converse with everyone, but he does so thoughtfully and with thorough deliberation. He never speaks without grounds for what he says. He seeks to use neither too many nor too few words.
– The fourth is the regulation of outward action. The student tries to adjust his actions in such a way that they harmonize with the actions of his fellow-men and with the events in his environment. He refrains from actions which are disturbing to others and antagonistic to his surroundings. He seeks to adjust his actions so that they combine harmoniously with his surroundings, with his position in life, etc. When an external motive causes him to act, he considers how he can best respond. When the impulse proceeds from himself he weighs with minute care the effects of his activity.
– The fifth function includes the management of the whole of life. The student endeavours to live in conformity with both Nature and spirit. Never over-hasty, he is also never indolent. Excessive activity and laziness are equally alien to him. He looks upon life as a means for work and disposes it accordingly. He regulates his habits, the care of his health, etc., in such a way that a harmonious whole is the outcome.
– The sixth is concerned with human endeavour. The student tests his capacities and proficiency, and conducts himself in the light of such self-knowledge, He attempts nothing that is beyond his powers, but seeks to omit nothing that is within their scope. On the other hand he sets before himself aims that coincide with the ideals and the great duties of a human being. He does not mechanically regard himself as a wheel in the vast machinery of mankind, but seeks to comprehend the tasks of his life, and to look out beyond the limit of the daily and trivial. He endeavours to fulfil his obligations ever better and more perfectly.
– The seventh deals with the effort to learn as much from life as possible. Nothing passes before the student without giving him occasion to accumulate experience which is of value to him for life. If he has performed anything wrongly or imperfectly, he lets this be an incentive for repeating the performance later on, but this time rightly and perfectly. When others act, he observes them with the same end in view. He tries to gather a rich store of experience, and ever to turn to it for counsel; nor indeed will he ever do anything without looking back on experiences from which he can derive help in his decisions and affairs.
– Finally, the eighth is that the student must, from time to time, glance introspectively into himself, sink back into himself, take himself carefully to task, form and test the fundamental principles of his life, run over, in his thoughts, the sum total of his knowledge, weigh his duties, reflect upon the content and aim of life and so on.
The better the student’s thoughts and speech harmonize with the processes in the outer world, the more quickly will he develop this faculty. Whoever thinks and speaks what is contrary to truth destroys something in the bud of his 16-petalled lotus. Truthfulness, uprightness and honesty are in this connection creative forces, while mendacity, deceitfulness and dishonesty are destructive forces.
The student must realize, however, that actual deeds are needed, and not merely ‘good intentions’. If I think or say anything that does not conform with reality, I kill something in my spiritual organs, even though I believe my intentions to be ever so good. It is here as with the child which needs must burn itself when it falls into the fire, even though it did so out of ignorance.
The regulation of the above activities of the soul in the manner described, causes the 16-petalled lotus to ray forth in glorious hues, and imparts to it a definite movement. Yet it must be noted that the faculty of clairvoyance cannot make its appearance before a definite degree of development has been attained. It cannot appear so long as it is irksome for the student to regulate his life in this manner. He is still unfit, so long as the activities described above are a matter of special pre-occupation for him. The first traces of clairvoyance only appear when he has reached the point of being able to live in the specified way, as a person habitually lives. These things must then no longer be irksome, but must have become a matter of course. There must be no need for him to be continually watching himself, and urging himself on to live in this way. It must all become a matter of habit.
Now this lotus flower may be made to develop in another way by following certain other instructions. But all such methods are rejected by true Spiritual Science, for they lead to the destruction of physical health and to moral ruin. They are easier to follow than those here described. The latter, though protracted and irksome, lead to the true goal and cannot but strengthen morally.
The distorted development of a lotus flower results not only in illusions and fantastic conceptions, should a certain degree of clairvoyance ensue, but also in errors and instability in ordinary life. Such a development may be the cause of timidity, envy, vanity, haughtiness, wilfulness and so on in a person who hitherto was free from these defects. It has already been explained that eight of the sixteen petals of this lotus flower were developed in a remote past, and that these will reappear of themselves, in the course of esoteric development.
Faulty training may easily result in the reappearance of the earlier petals alone, while the new petals remain stunted. This will ensue especially if too little logical, rational thinking is introduced into the instruction. It is of supreme importance that the student should be a rational and clear-thinking person, and of further importance that he should practice the greatest clarity of speech. People who begin to have some presentiment of supersensible things, are apt to wax talkative on this subject, thereby retarding their normal development. The less one talks about these matters the better. No one should speak about them until he has achieved a certain degree of clarity.
On premature judgment
Suppose I hear a piece of news and thereupon immediately form an opinion. Shortly afterwards I receive some further news which does not harmonize with the previous information. I am thereby obliged to reverse my previous judgment. The result is an unfavorable influence upon my 16-petalled lotus. Quite the contrary would have been the case had I, in the first place, suspended my judgment, and remained silent both inwardly in thought and outwardly in word, concerning the whole affair, until I had acquired reliable grounds for forming my judgment.
Caution in the formation and pronouncement of judgments becomes, by degrees, the special characteristic of the student. On the other hand his receptivity for impressions and experiences increases; he lets them pass over him silently, so as to collect and have the largest possible number of facts at his disposal, when the time comes to form his opinions. Bluish-red and reddish-pink shades colour the lotus flower as the result of such circumspection, whereas, in the opposite case, dark red and orange shades appear.
See also Buddhas Eightfold Path: The Eightfold Path
The 12-petalled Lotus
The 12-petalled lotus situated in the region of the heart, is developed in a similar way. Half its petals, too, were already existent and in active use, in a remote stage of human evolution. Thus these six petals need not now be especially developed in esoteric training; they appear of themselves, and begin to revolve when the student sets to work on the other six. Here again he learns to promote this development by consciously controlling and directing certain inner activities in a special way.
It must be clearly understood that the perceptions of each single spiritual organ bear a different character. The 12- and 16-petalled lotus flowers transmit quite different perceptions. The latter perceives forms. The thoughts and mentality of other beings and the laws governing natural phenomena become manifest, through the 16-petalled lotus, as figures, not rigid motionless figures, but mobile forms filled with life. The clairvoyant in whom this sense is developed, can distinguish, for every mode of thought and for every law of Nature, a form bearing their impression. A revengeful thought, for example, assumes an arrow-like, pronged form, while a kindly thought is often formed like an opening flower, and so on. Clear-cut, significant thoughts are regular and symmetrical in form, while confused thoughts have wavy outlines. Quite different perceptions are received through the 12-petalled lotus. These perceptions may be in a sense likened to warmth and cold, as applied to the soul. A clairvoyant equipped with this faculty feels this warmth and cold streaming out from the forms discerned by the 16-petalled lotus.
– The 12-petalled lotus, when developed, reveals to the clairvoyant a deep understanding of the processes of Nature. From every manifestation of growth and development there issue rays of soul-warmth, while everything that is encompassed by decay, destruction, ruin, presents an impression of cold.
The development of this sense may be furthered in the following manner:
To begin with, the student applies himself to regulating his sequence of thought (control of thought). Just as the 16-petalled lotus is developed by cultivating thoughts that conform with truth and are significant, so, too, the 12-petalled lotus is developed by inwardly controlling the trains of thought. Thoughts that dart to and fro like will-o’-the-wisps, and follow each other in no logical or rational sequence, but merely by pure chance, destroy its form. The latter is developed to ever-increasing perfection, the closer thought is made to follow upon thought, and the more strictly everything of illogical nature is avoided. If the student hears illogical thoughts, he immediately lets the right thoughts pass through his mind. He should not, however, withdraw in a loveless way from what is perhaps an illogical environment, in order to further his own development. Neither should he feel himself impelled to correct all the illogical thoughts expressed around him. He should rather co-ordinate silently the thoughts as they pour in upon him, in a way conforming with logic and sense, and himself endeavour, in every case, to retain this same method in his own thinking.
– An equal supervision in his actions forms the second requirement(control of actions). All inconstancy, all disharmony of action conduces to the destruction of the lotus flower here in question. When the student performs some action, he must see to it that his succeeding action follows in logical sequence, for if he acts from day to day with variable intent, he will never develop the faculty here considered.
– The third requirement is the cultivation of endurance.(perseverance). The student is impervious to all influences which would divert him from the goal he has set himself, so long as he can regard it as the right goal. For him, obstacles contain a challenge to surmount them, but are never a reason for restraining his progress.
– The fourth requirement is forbearance (tolerance) towards persons, creatures and also circumstances. The student suppresses all superfluous criticism of everything that is imperfect, evil and bad, and seeks rather to understand everything that comes under his notice. Even as the sun does not withdraw its light from the bad and the evil, so he, too, does not refuse them an intelligent sympathy. Should some trouble befall him, he does not proceed to condemn and criticize, but accepts what necessity has brought him, and endeavours to the best of his ability, to give the matter a turn for the best. He does not consider the opinions of others merely from his own standpoint, but seeks to put himself into the other’s position.
– The fifth requirement is impartiality towards everything that life brings. In this connection we speak of faith and trust. The student encounters every human being and every creature with this trust, and lets it inspire his every action. Upon hearing some information, he never says to himself: ‘I don’t believe it; it contradicts my present opinions.’ He is far rather ready to test and rectify his views and opinions. He ever remains receptive for everything that confronts him, and he trusts in the effectiveness of his undertakings. Timidity and scepticism are banished from his being. He harbours a faith in the power of his intentions. A hundred failures cannot rob him of his faith. This is the ‘faith which can move mountains’.
– The sixth requirement is the cultivation of a certain inner balance (equanimity). The student endeavours to retain his composure in the face of joy and sorrow, and discards the tendency to fluctuate between the seventh heaven of joy and the depths of despair. Misfortune and danger, fortune and advancement alike find him ready armed.
The reader will recognize in the qualities here described, the ‘six attributes’, which the candidate for Initiation strives to acquire. The intention has been to show their connection with the spiritual organ known as the 12-petalled lotus flower. As before, special instructions can be given to bring this lotus flower to fruition, but here again, the perfect symmetry of its form depends on the development of the qualities mentioned, the neglect of which results in this organ being formed to a caricature of its proper shape. In this case, should a certain clairvoyance be attained, the qualities in question may take an evil instead of a good direction. A person may become intolerant, timid or contentious towards his environment; may, for instance, acquire some feeling for the sentiments of others, and for this reason shun them or hate them. This may even reach the point that, by reason of the inner coldness overwhelming him, he is unable to listen to repugnant opinions, or he may behave in an objectionable manner.
The 10-petalled Lotus
An inner training of a particularly intimate character is necessary for the development of the l0-petalled lotus flower, for it is now a question of learning consciously to control and dominate the sense-impressions themselves. This is of particular importance in the initial stages of clairvoyance, for it is only by this means that a source of countless illusions and fancies is avoided. People, as a rule, do not realize by what factors their sudden ideas and memories are dominated, and how they are produced.
Consider the following case. Someone is travelling by railway; his mind is busy with one thought; suddenly his thought diverges; he recollects an experience that befell him years ago, and interweaves it with his present thought. He did not notice that in looking through the window, he had caught sight of a person who resembled another intimately connected with the recollected experience. He remains conscious, not of what he saw, but of the effect it produced, and so believes that it all came to him ‘of its own accord’. Now much in life occurs in such a way! How great is the part played in our life by things we hear and learn, without our consciously realizing the connection! Someone, for instance, cannot bear a certain colour, but does not realize that this is due to the fact that the school-teacher who used to worry him many years ago, wore a coat of that colour. Innumerable illusions are based upon such associations.
Many things leave their mark upon the soul, while remaining outside the pale of consciousness. The following may occur. Someone reads in the paper about the death of a well-known person, and forthwith claims to have had a ‘presentiment’ of it ‘yesterday’, although he neither heard nor saw anything that might have given rise to such a thought. And indeed it is quite true that the thought occurred to him ‘yesterday’, as though of its own accord, that this particular person would die; only one thing escaped his attention: two or three hours before this thought occurred to him yesterday, he went to visit an acquaintance; a newspaper lay on the table; he did not actually read it, but his eyes unconsciously fell on the announcement of the dangerous illness of the person in question. He remained unconscious of the impression he received, and yet this impression resulted in his ‘presentiment’.
Reflection upon these matters will show how great a source of illusion and fantasy is contained in such associations. It is just this source which must be dammed up by all who seek to develop their l0-petalled lotus flower. Deeply hidden characteristics in other souls can he perceived by this organ, but their truth depends on the attainment of immunity from the above-mentioned illusions. For this purpose it is necessary that the student should control and dominate everything that seeks to influence him from outside. He should reach the point of really receiving no impressions beyond those he wishes to receive. This can only be achieved by the development of a powerful inner life; by an effort of the will he only allows such things to impress him to which his attention is directed, and he actually evades all impressions to which he does not voluntarily respond. If he sees something, it is because he wills to see it. And if he does not voluntarily take notice of something, it is actually non-existent for him. The greater the energy and inner activity devoted to this work, the more extensively will this faculty be attained.
– The student must avoid all vacuous gazing and mechanical listening. For him only those things exist to which he turns his eye or his ear. He must practise the power of hearing nothing, even in the greatest disturbance, if he does not will to hear; and he must make his eyes unimpressionable to things of which he does not particularly take notice. He must be shielded as by an inner armour against all unconscious impressions.
– In this connection, the student must devote special care to his thought-life. He singles out a particular thought and endeavours to link on to it only such other thoughts as he can himself consciously and voluntarily produce. He rejects all casual fancies, and does not connect this thought with another until he has investigated the origin of the latter.
– He goes still further. If, for instance, he feels a particular antipathy for something, he will combat it and endeavour to establish a conscious relation between himself and the thing in question. In this way the unconscious elements that intrude into his soul will become fewer and fewer. Only by such severe self-discipline can the l0-petalled lotus flower attain its proper form. The student’s inner life must become a life of attention, and he must learn really to keep away from himself everything to which he should not or does not wish to direct his attention.
If this strict self-discipline be accompanied by meditation prescribed in esoteric training, the lotus flower in the region of the pit of the stomach comes to fruition in the right way, and light and colour of a spiritual kind are now added to the form and warmth perceptible to the organs described above.
The talents and faculties of other beings are thereby revealed, also the forces and the hidden attributes of Nature. The coloured aura of living creatures then becomes visible; all that is around us manifests its spiritual attributes.
It will be admitted that the very greatest care is necessary at this stage of development, for the play of unconscious memories is here exceedingly active. If this were not the case, many people would possess this inner sense, for it comes almost immediately into evidence, when the impressions delivered by the outer senses are held so completely under control, that they become dependent on nothing save attention or inattention. This inner sense remains ineffective so long as the powerful outer senses smother it and render it insensible.
The 6-petalled Lotus
Still greater difficulty attends the development of the 6-petalled lotus flower situated in the centre of the body, for it can only be achieved as the result of complete mastery and control of the whole personality through consciousness of self, so that body, soul and spirit form one harmonious whole. The functions of the body, the inclinations and passions of the soul, the thoughts and ideas of the spirit, must be tuned to perfect unison. The body must be so ennobled and purified that its organs are impelled to nothing that is not in the service of the soul and spirit. The soul must not be impelled, through the body, to lusts and passions which are antagonistic to pure and noble thought. The spirit, however, must not stand as a slave-driver over the soul, dominating it with laws and commandments; the soul must rather learn to follow these laws and duties out of its own free inclination.
The student must not feel duty to be an oppressive power to which he unwillingly submits, but rather something which he performs out of love. His task is to attain an equilibrium of soul between body and spirit, and he must perfect himself in this way, to the extent of being free to abandon himself to the functions of the senses, for these should be so purified that they lose the power to drag him down to their level. He must no longer require to curb his passions, inasmuch as they of their own accord follow the good.
When esoteric development has progressed so far that the lotus flowers begin to stir, much has already been achieved by the student which can result in the formation of certain quite definite currents and movements in his etheric body.
The object of this development is the formation of a kind of centre in the region of the physical heart, from which currents and movements, in the greatest variety of colours and forms, radiate. This centre is, in reality, not a mere point, but a most complicated structure, a most wonderful organ. It glows and shimmers with every shade of colour, and displays forms of great symmetry, capable of rapid transformation. Other forms and streams of colour radiate from this organ to the other parts of the body, and beyond it, to the astral body, which they completely permeate and illumine. The most important part of these currents flows to the lotus flowers. They permeate each petal and regulate its revolutions; then streaming out at the points of the petals, they lose themselves in outer space. The greater the development of a person, the greater the circumference to which these rays extend.
The 12-petalled lotus flower has a particularly close connection with this central organ. The currents flow directly into it and through it, proceeding, on the one side, to the 16- and the 2-petalled lotus flowers, and on the other, the lower side, to the flowers of eight, six and four petals. It is for this reason that the very greatest care must be devoted to the development of the 12-petalled lotus, for an imperfection in the latter would result in the irregular formation of the whole structure.
Continued practice enables the student to determine for himself the position of his etheric body. Hitherto this position depended upon the forces proceeding from without or from within the physical body. Through further development the student is able to direct his etheric body to all sides.
This faculty is effected by currents moving approximately along both hands, and centred in the 2-petalled lotus in the region of the eyes. All that is made possible through the radiations from the larynx assuming round forms, of which a number how to the 2-petalled lotus, and thence form undulating currents along the hands. As a further development these currents branch out and ramify in the most delicate manner, and become, as it were, a kind of web, which then encompasses the entire etheric body as though with a network.
Whereas hitherto the etheric body was not closed to the outer world, so that the life currents from the universal ocean of life flowed freely in and out, it now becomes necessary that these currents should pass through this membrane. Thus the individual becomes sensitive to these external streams; they become perceptible to him. And now the time has come to give the complete system of currents and movements its centre situated in the region of the heart.
This again is effected by persevering with the exercises in concentration and meditation; and at this point also the stage is reached when the student becomes gifted with the ‘inner word.’ All things now acquire a new significance for him. They become as it were spiritually audible in their innermost self, and speak to him of their essential being. The currents described above place him in touch with the inner being of the world to which he belongs. He begins to mingle his life with the life of his environment and can let it reverberate in the movements of his lotus flowers.
At this point the spiritual world is entered. If the student has advanced so far, he acquires a new understanding for all that the great teachers of humanity have uttered. The sayings of the Buddha and the Gospels, for instance, produce a new effect on him. They pervade him with a felicity of which he had not dreamed before. For the tone of their words follows the movements and rhythms which he has himself formed within himself. He can now have positive knowledge that a Buddha or the Evangelists did not utter their own personal revelations, but those which flowed into them from the innermost Being of all things.
To separate truth from opinions
In esoteric training, there is question of four attributes which must be acquired on the socalled probationary path for the attainment of higher knowledge.
- The first is the faculty of discrimination in thoughts between truth and mere semblance or opinion.
- The second attribute is the correct estimation of what is inwardly true and real, as against what is merely apparent.
- The third rests in the practice of the six qualities already mentioned in the preceding pages: [see above] thought-control, control of actions, perseverance, tolerance, faith and equanimity.
- The fourth attribute is the love of inner freedom.
A mere intellectual understanding of what is included in these attributes is of no value. They must become so incorporated into the soul that they form the basis of inner habits. Consider, for instance, the first of these attributes: the discrimination between truth and semblance.
The student must so train himself that he quite as a matter of course distinguishes, in everything that confronts him, between the non-essential elements and those that are significant and essential.
He will only succeed in this if, in his observation of the outer world, he quietly and patiently ever and again repeats the attempt. And at the end he will naturally single out the essential and the true at a glance, whereas formerly the nonessential, too, could content him. ‘All things corruptible are but reflection’ – is a truth which becomes an unquestionable conviction of the soul. The same applies to the remaining three of the four attributes mentioned.
The Great Initiates
It will be clear from the above that the instructions given in esoteric training exert a determining influence reaching the innermost depths of human nature. Such are the instructions regarding the four qualities mentioned above. They can be found in one form or another in all the great religions.
The founders of the great religions did not give mankind these teachings from some vague feeling. They gave them for the good reason that they were great Initiates. Out of their knowledge did they shape their moral teachings. They knew how these would react upon the finer nature of men, and desired that their followers should gradually achieve the development of this finer nature.
The founders of the great religions are therefore the great Initiates. Their teaching flows into the soul of men, and thus, with humanity, the whole world moves forward. Quite consciously did they work to further this evolutionary process of humanity. Their teachings can only be understood if it be remembered that they are the product of knowledge of the innermost depths of human nature. The great Initiates knew, and it is out of their knowledge that they shaped the ideals of humanity. Yet man approaches these great leaders when he uplifts himself, in his own development, to their heights.
The Guardian of the Threshold
Were the student to obtain an insight into these higher worlds without sufficient preparation regarding their nature, he would find himself confronted by the picture of his own soul as though by an enigma. There his own desires and passions confront him in animal or, more seldom, in human forms. It is true that the animal forms of this world are never quite similar to those of the physical world, yet they possess a remote resemblance. Inexpert observers often take them to be identical.
Now upon entering this world, an entirely new method of judgment must be acquired. For apart from the fact that things actually pertaining to inner nature appear as outer world, they also hear the character of mirrored reflections of what they really are. When, for instance, a number is perceived, it must be reversed, as a picture in a mirror; 265 would mean here in reality 562. A sphere is perceived as though from its centre. This inner perception must then be translated.
The qualities of the soul appear likewise as in a mirror. A wish directed towards an outer object appears as a form moving towards the person wishing.
Passions residing in the lower part of human nature can assume animal forms or similar shapes, that hurl themselves against the individual. In reality, these passions are struggling outward; they seek satisfaction in the outer world, but this search in an outward direction appears in the mirrored reflection as an attack on the individual from whom they proceed.
If the student, before attaining insight into higher worlds, has learnt by quiet and sincere self-observation to realize the qualities and defects of his own character, he will then, at the moment when his own inner self confronts him as a mirrored image, find strength and courage to conduct himself in the right way.
People who have failed to test themselves in this way, and are insufficiently acquainted with their own inner self, will not recognize themselves in their own mirrored image, and will mistake it for a reality foreign to themselves. Or they may become alarmed at the vision, and, because they cannot endure the sight, deceive themselves into believing the whole thing is nothing but an illusion which cannot lead them anywhere. In either case the person in question, through prematurely attaining a certain stage of inner development, would himself fatally obstruct his own progress.
The 2-petalled Lotus
This is the moment when the 2-petalled lotus in the region of the eyes is required. If it now begins to stir, the student finds it possible to set his higher Ego in connection with higher spiritual beings. The currents from this lotus flower flow towards the higher entities in such a way that the movements in question are fully apparent to the individual.
Just as the light renders the physical objects visible, so, too, these currents disclose spiritual beings of higher worlds.
Through inward application to the fundamental truths derived from Spiritual Science, the student learns to set in motion, and then to direct the currents proceeding from the lotus flower between the eyes.
The Higher ‘I’
It is at this stage of development especially that the value of sound judgment, and a training in clear and logical thought, is proved. The higher self which hitherto slumbered unconsciously, in an embryonic state, is now born into conscious existence. This is not a figurative, but a positive birth in the spiritual world, and the being now born, the higher self, if it is to be capable of life, must enter that world with all the necessary organs and aptitudes. Just as Nature must provide for a child being born into the world with suitable eyes and ears, so, too, the laws of self-development must provide for the necessary qualities, with which the higher self can enter existence.
These laws governing the development of the higher spiritual organs are none other than the laws of sound reason and morality of the physical world. The spiritual self matures in the physical self as a child in the mother’s womb. The constitution of the spiritual self is similarly conditioned by the laws of common intelligence and reason that govern physical life. No one can give birth to a soundly constituted higher self, whose life in thought and feeling, in the physical world, is not sound and healthy.
Natural, rational life is the basis of all genuine spiritual development. Just as the child when still in the maternal womb, lives in accordance with natural forces to which it has access, after its birth, through its organs of sense, so, too, the human higher self lives in accordance with the laws of the spiritual world, even during physical existence. And even as the child, out of a dim life-instinct, acquires the requisite forces, so, too, can man acquire the powers of the spiritual world before his higher self is born. Indeed he must do this if the latter is to enter the world as a fully developed being. It would be quite wrong for anyone to say: ‘I cannot accept the teachings of Spiritual Science until I myself become a seer,’ for without inward application to the results of spiritual investigation, there is no chance whatever of attaining genuine higher knowledge. It would be as though a child, during gestation, were to refuse the forces coming to it through its mother, and proposed to wait until it could create them for itself. Just as the child in its incipient feeling for life, learns to appreciate what is offered to it, so can the non-seer appreciate the truth of the teachings of Spiritual Science.
An insight into these teachings, based on a deeply rooted feeling for truth, and a clear, sound, all-round critical and reasoning faculty, is possible, even before spiritual things are actually perceived. The esoteric knowledge must first be studied, so that this study becomes a preparation for clairvoyance. A person attaining clairvoyance without such preparation would resemble a child born with eyes and ears but without a brain. The entire world of sound and colour would display itself before him, but he would be helpless in it.
- At this stage of his esoteric development, the student realizes, through personal inward experience, all that had previously appealed to his sense of truth, to his intellect and reason.
- He has now direct knowledge of his higher self.
- He learns how his higher self is connected with exalted spiritual beings, and forms with them a united whole.
- He sees how the lower self originates in a higher world, and it is revealed to him how his higher nature outlasts his lower.
- He can now distinguish the imperishable in himself from the perishable; that is, he learns, through personal insight, to understand the doctrine of the incarnation of the higher self in the lower.
- It will become plain to him that he is involved in a great spiritual complex, and that his qualities and destiny are due to this connection.
- He learns to recognize the law of his life, his Karma.
- He realizes that his lower self, constituting his present existence, is only one of the forms which his higher being can adopt.
- He discerns the possibility of working down from his higher self on to his lower self, so that he may perfect himself ever more and more.
- Now, too, he can rightly distinguish the great differences between human beings, in regard to their level of perfection.
- He becomes aware that there are others above him, who have already traversed the stages which still lie before him, and he realizes that the teachings and deeds of such men proceed from the inspiration of a higher world. He owes this knowledge to his first glimpse into this higher world. The so-called great Initiates of humanity now become vested with reality for him.
These, then, are the gifts which the student owes to his development at this stage: insight into his higher self; insight into the doctrine of the incarnation of this higher being into a lower; insight into the laws by which life in the physical world is regulated according to its spiritual connections, that is, the law of Karma; and finally, insight into the existence of the great Initiates.
From Belief to Knowledge
Thus it is said of a student who has reached this stage, that all doubt has vanished from him. His former faith, based on reason and sound thought, is now replaced by knowledge and insight which nothing can undermine. The various religious cults have presented, in their ceremonies, sacraments, and rites, externally visible pictures of the higher spiritual beings and events. None but those who have not penetrated to the depths of the great religious cults, can fail to recognize this fact. Personal insight into spiritual reality explains the great significance of these externally visible cults. Religious service, then, becomes for the seer an image of his own communion with the higher, spiritual world.
It has been shown how the student, by attaining this stage, becomes, in truth, a new being. He can now mature to still higher faculties, and, by means of the life-currents of his etheric body, control the higher and actual life-element, thus attaining independence, to a high degree, from the restrictions of the physical body.
There is more on the etheric body here: The Three Spiritual Principles of the Universe
On Alcohol, Meat and physical exercises
Although one can’t eat one’s way into the spiritual world, eating the wrong things can make spiritual development difficult or impossible.
Alcohol only arose after the Atlantean epoch to help men to become individualized. It closes man off from his higher capacities and encloses him in himself. That’s why alcohol was used in the Dionysian mysteries. But now all civilized people have reached that stage so that alcohol is an unnecessary evil today.
Through its use one loses the ability to get along with others and to understand them. Alcohol is especially harmful for esoterics since its use changes all developed higher forces into forces of the personal ego, repeatedly locks it into itself, and tears the astral body apart through the opposing streams of the higher and lower I forces. The principle through which everyone can consciously attain his individualization was brought through the coming of Christ to the earth. That’s why Christ Jesus says: I am the true vine.
By consuming alcohol one prepares a fertile soil for hosts of spiritual beings, just as a dirty room gets filled with flies.
The meat (but not milk and eggs) that we eat is permeated by the animal’s astral body, and so our astral body has to work to digest it. This takes it away from its real task of creating pictures. Also at night it’s held fast by the etheric body so that it can’t leave it properly. This hinders it from its nightly task of restoring vital forces.
Vegetarian food that consists of physical and etheric things support the creation of large, comprehensive pictures and so gives a greater insight that lets one oversee things better without much deliberation. The greater force doesn’t exhaust us, but summons spiritual forces.
Vegetarian food is excellent for doctors and lawyers who will find it easier to see through their patients or their clients’ affairs, but it’s not the right thing for bankers, industrialists, salesmen and others who have a lot of calculating, for one loses the ability to make physical combinations.
People who inherited a body that can’t stand vegetarianism should not undertake an esoteric training.
The jogging, exercising and bathing that are often recommended are wrong for an esoteric; they pull him down into his physical body. He should try to move his limbs as little as possible.
“In general,” continued the Master, “we distinguish three kinds of individuals: those whose intelligence is completely dull : those whose intelligence is of average quality, able to understand some Truths which are specially evident; those endowed with an intelligence better equipped for acute perceptions, who are fit to penetrate below the surface of the world of physical phenomena and grasp the causes which are at work there.’
The last group is not bound by opinions, their mind is free to work with ideas presented to them:
“It is enough to direct the attention to these last, to say to them: ‘Look from this point of view, consider that’ and they perceive what is to be perceived there where they have been told to look; they understand what is really the thing which one has pointed out to them.
The dull will not be able to fathom the secret ideas:
“One may proclaim on the high road the Teachings considered secret, they will remain ‘secret’ for the individuals with dull minds who will hear what is said to them, and will grasp nothing of it but the sound.
“It is not on the Master that the ‘secret’ depends but on the hearer. A Master can only be he who opens the door: it is for the disciple to be capable of seeing what lies beyond. Teachers exist who are able to discern the degree of intellectual acuteness of those who desire their Teaching, and they reserve the detailed explanation of certain doctrines for those whom they judge able to understand them. It is thus that the deep Teachings, transmitted orally from Master to disciple for many generations, have been passed on and preserved from oblivion. You have heard them. Do with them as you think fit. They are very simple, but, like a powerful battering ram, they run counter to the wall of false ideas rooted in the mind of man and the emotions which delight him casting him into suffering ….. Try!”
Those in between will create beliefs, opinions, out of what they hear, but will not understand the depth.
The Tibetan Masters who pass on the traditional oral teachings repeat insistently the fact that these teachings are for the use of individuals in the rab category, that is to say endowed with superior and excellent intelligence, the “lotus whose flowers grow above the level of the water” according to the picturesque comparison quoted above.
The object of these teachings is not to amuse the simple-minded, those charitably called in the Tibetan Scriptures the “children”, it is meant for the strong to make them stronger, for the intelligent to make them more intelligent, for the shrewd to develop their shrewdness and to lead them to the possession of transcendent insight (lhag thong) which constitutes the real enlightenment.
This oral tradition stems from a brilliant period of Buddhist philosophy, being handed down from master to disciple. They are not the result of supernatural revelation alone, but are the result of intellectual and spiritual investigations by men who also investigated the material plane, who possessed superior faculties of understanding, transcendent insight: lhag thong.
Transcendent Insight was the goal of the oral teachings:
The attainment of transcendent insight is the real object of the training advocated in the traditional Oral Teachings, which do not consist, as so many imagine, in teaching certain things to the pupil, in revealing to him certain secrets, but rather in showing him the means to learn them and discover them for himself.
What we learn from each other is of no value, only what we ourselves understand trough our own investigations becomes wisdom. That’s what separate the second group from the third, the second group eats books and save their content as abstract thoughts in their memory, where the third group transforms it to wisdom.
Lhag thong means to look through the curtain, through the illusion:
Literally, lhag thong, means to see “more”, to see “beyond”, to see “extremely”, “supremely”. Thus, not only to see more than that which is seen by the mass of mankind who are crassly ignorant, but to see beyond the bounds limiting the vision of cultivated minds, to bring into being the third eye of Knowledge which the adepts of tantric sects place in the centre of the forehead of their symbolic Gods.
The primary advice Buddha gave his disciples was: Doubt. It leads to research and research leads to knowledge.
Those who follows the path has to take all the things up they take for granted, to understand it fully instead of abstract knowledge we have learned up through life.
“Now investigate whether these facts which you accept as representing a reality are, truly, real. Examine them attentively and at length, putting aside all preconceived ideas, empty your mind of all the opinions which it has harboured concerning these facts; doubt that which you have mechanically admitted up to the present, look as you would look at quite new things, those which form your physical environment; you will then investigate the mental reactions to which they give rise.
Where have we received our current knowledge, from our senses:
We have seen, heard, tasted, smelt, touched various objects, either material or of a more tenuous nature. We have given names to these various objects, we have classified them in series of similar objects, we have built up, with them, a world which has become familiar to us in the same way as we furnish a house in which we live.
This is the illusion we live in. As children we have build our first illusions, the first rules we live by, we are not old enough to understand, so we create rules to live by, which we can change when we become older, but often we don’t, and these rules or packets of experiences are our karma and they can be sore to touch, but we have to open them to be free, and when we do, it only contains a childs fears, not a problem for a grown up.
Nidanas and the Zodiac
The twelve Nidanas are the karmic powers keeping man reincarnating on the Earth. This is an experiment where I test the thesis: “They are the powers of the Zodiac, but they are not following the same sequence around the Zodiac as the star signs.”
The twelve Nidanas consists of three groups, the first group of four is the Cardinal signs, the next group are the Mutable and the last group are the Fixed star signs. In the following tables and zodiac I have placed the Nidanas on the zodiac following these principles. The following paragraph is by Rudolf Steiner, the tables are extended by me and the figure is my design, and I had reformatted and added star signs.
Nidanas and the Signs
When man returns from Devachan, the astral, etheric and physical forces arrange themselves around him according to twelve forces of karma which in Indian esotericism are called Nidanas:
|Nidanas||Sign||Keywords||Comments from Wikipedia|
|Avidya||♈ Aries||Non-knowledge, ignorance||Not knowing suffering, not knowing the origination of suffering, not knowing the cessation of suffering, not knowing the way of practice leading to the cessation of suffering: This is called ignorance.|
|Sanskara||♋ Cancer||Organizing tendencies, desire||These three are fabrications: bodily fabrications, verbal fabrications, mental fabrications. These are called fabrications.|
|Vijnana||♎ Libra||Consciousness, understanding, intellectual knowledge||These six are classes of consciousness: eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, nose-consciousness, tongue-consciousness, body-consciousness, intellect-consciousness.|
|Namarupa||♑ Capricorn||Names and form, distinction between name and form (subject and object)||Feeling, perception, intention, contact, and attention: This is called name. The four great elements, and the body dependent on the four great elements: This is called form.|
|Shadayadana||♊ Gemini||What the intellect makes of things||The eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body and mind are the six sense media.|
|Sparsha||♍ Virgo||Contact with existence||The coming together of the object, the sense medium and the consciousness of that sense medium is called contact.|
|Vedana||♐ Sagittarius||Feeling, karmic results of feelings and sensations||Feeling or sensations are of six forms: vision, hearing, olfactory sensation, gustatory sensation, tactile sensation, and intellectual sensation (thought).|
|Trishna||♓ Pisces||Thirst for existense||There are these six forms of cravings: cravings with respect to forms, sounds, smells, tastes, touch (massage, sex, pain), and ideas.|
|Upadana||♉ Taurus||A sense of comfort in existence||These four are clingings: sensual clinging, view clinging, practice clinging, and self clinging|
|Bhava||♌ Leo||Birth, individual existense||These three are becoming: sensual becoming, form becoming, formless becoming|
|Jati||♏ Scorpio||The urge towards birth||Birth is any coming-to-be or coming-forth. It refers not just to birth at the beginning of a lifetime, but to birth as new person, acquisition of a new status or position etc.|
|Jaramarana||♒ Aquarius||What frees from earthly existence|
In Indian esotericism twelve forces are differentiated which draw man down again into physical existence.
- Aries – The first of these forces is Avidja: ignorance. Avidja is what draws us down again into physical existence for the simple reason that we shall only have fulfilled our mission on the Earth when we have extracted from it all possible knowledge. On the other hand we have not fulfilled our mission as long as everything that we should learn from physical existence has not yet been extracted.
- Cancer – After Avidja what next draws us back is what the earth contains because we ourselves have made it, which therefore belongs to our Organisation. When a mason, for instance, has worked on the building of a cathedral, this has become a part of himself. There is a reciprocal attraction between them. What has an organ-creating tendency for the original instigator, whether it be the work of Leonardo da Vinci or the smallest piece of work, forms an organ in the human being and this is the cause of his return. All that the man has done, taken together, is called Sanskara or the organising tendency which builds up the human being. This is the second thing which draws him back.
- Libra – Now comes the third. Before the human being entered into any incarnation he knew nothing of an outer-world. Self-awareness first began with the first incarnation; previously man had no consciousness of self. He had first to perceive the outer objects on the physical plane before he could develop consciousness of self. True as it is that what a man has done draws him back to the physical plane, so is it true that knowledge of things draws him back. Consciousness is a new force which binds him to what is here. This is the third element that draws him into a new earth-life. This third force is called Vijnana = consciousness.
- Capricorn – Up to this point we have remained very intimately within the human soul. As the fourth stage appears what comes towards the consciousness from outside, what was indeed already there without man, but what he had first to learn to know with his consciousness-this was present outside in his previous existence, but only disclosed itself after his consciousness opened to it. It is the separation between subject and object, or, as the Sanscrit writer says, the separation between name and form (Namarupa). Through this man reached the outer object. This is the fourth force that draws him back, for instance the memory of a being to which he has attached himself.
- Gemini – Next comes what we form as mental image in connection with an external object: for example, picturing a dog is merely making a mental image, which is however the essential thing for the painter. It is what the intellect makes of a thing: Shadayadana.
- Virgo – Now there is a further descent into the earthly. The mental picture leads us to what we call contact with existence: Sparsha. Whoever depends on the object stands at the stage of Namarupa; whoever forms pictures stands at the stage of Shadayadana. The one however who differentiates between the pleasing and the unpleasing will reach the point where he prefers the beautiful to the unbeautiful. This is called contact with existence: Sparsha.
- Sagittarius – Somewhat different however from this contact with the outer-world is what at the same time stirs inwardly as feeling. Now I myself come into action: I connect my feeling with one thing or another. That is a new element. Man becomes more involved. It is called Vedana: Feeling.
- Pisces – Through Vedana something quite new again arises, that is, longing for existence. The forces which draw man back into existence awaken more and more strongly within himself. The higher forces compel all human beings to a greater or lesser degree; they are not individual. Eventually however, quite personal forces appear which draw him back again into the earthly world. That is the eighth force. Trishna = Thirst for existence.
- Taurus – Still more subjective than the thirst for existence is what is named Upadana: Comfort in existence. With Upadana man has something in common with the animal, but he experiences it more spiritually and it is the task of man to spiritualise what is gross in this soul element.
- Leo – Then comes individual existence itself, the sum of all the earlier incarnations when he was already on the earth: Bhava = individual existence, the force of the totality of earlier incarnations. Previous incarnations draw him down into existence.
- Scorpio – With this we have retraced the stages of the Nidanas up to individual birth. The esotericist differentiates two further stages which go beyond the period of individual existence. Here he differentiates a previous condition that gave the impetus towards birth, before man had ever been incarnated. This is called Jata: what before birth gave the impetus to birth.
- Aquarius – The impetus towards birth is interconnected with a different impulse. It brings with it the germ of dissolution, the urge to extricate oneself from individual birth. What interests us is that this earthly existence of ours falls again into decay and we are freed, able to become old and die (jaramarana).
These are the twelve Nidanas which work like strings, drawing us ever and again down into existence. (The meaning of Nidana is string, loop.)
There are three groups which belong together:
The soul has three members: the consciousness soul as the highest member, then the intellectual or mind soul and the sentient soul. The first group of the Nidanas from Avidya to Namarupa is connected with the consciousness soul: the second group with the intellectual soul and the third, from Upadana to Jaramarana, with the sentient soul.
Vijnana is characteristic of the consciousness soul; Shadayadana of the intellectual soul and the last four are bound with the sentient soul. These last four are present in both animal and man.
A person can affect his Karma to the degree in which he himself possesses Intuition; or he must receive it from the high initiates in the form of great moral laws. Vijnana is the name used for the consciousness necessary for the overcoming of Karma. And now let us think of a man living in the world, carrying out his actions and dying. After his death something of him nevertheless remains here in this world which he has woven into it: Rupa, Vedana, Sanjna, Sanskara and Vijnana. These five are the balance of his account: his personal destiny as Rupa; the destiny of the nation into which he is born, as Vedana; the actual fact of his birth on this earth as Sanjna. In addition, working with Sanskara, the desire nature, and Vijnana, the consciousness. These are the five Skandhas.
What a man gives out into the world remains as the five Skandhas in the world. These are the foundation of his new existence. They have progressively less effect when he has consciously developed something of the last two. The more he has gained conscious power over Vijnana, the more does he gain the power of consciously incarnating in the physical body. In their essential nature the Skandhas are identical with Karma.
- Rupa: Corporality, Actions. ♑
- Vedana: Feeling. ♐
- Sanjna: Perception. ♊
- Sanskara: Desire. ♋
- Vijnana: Consciousness necessary to the overcoming of Karma. ♎
Elements of the Wheel
The wheel is is driven by its hub of Three Poisons: craving or attachment, aversion or hatred, and delusion or ignorance, and by the byproduct of our actions that are motivated by these three, karma.
The segments between spokes are the different realms into which sentient beings take rebirth.
The realms relate to six distinct conditions.
In the two higher realms, they are Pride and Jealousy:
0. Devas or gods – Pride.
Long enjoyable lives full of pleasure and abundance, full of meaningless distractions.
1. Ahuras or titans – Jealousy.
Pleasure and abundance like the gods, but fighting among themselves and with the gods, caused by jealousy.
In the Realm, where it is easiest to attain Enlightenment, humans are afflicted with five disturbing emotions:
6. Manushyas or humans – Desire.
Humans suffer from hunger, thirst, heat, cold, separation from friends, being attacked by enemies, not getting what they want, and getting what they don’t want. Suffer also from general sufferings of birth, old age, sickness and death.
The lower realms are associated with Ignorance, Desire and Anger:
3. Tiryakas or animals – Ignorance.
This is the animal realm where sentient beings from whales to insects are confined in fear and ignorance. Animals suffers by being attacked and eaten by other animals, and domesticated by being slaughtered.
5. Pretas or hungry ghosts – Greed.
Lives with constant hunger and thirst. When they reach the goal it either disappears or not what they expected. It’s the realm for those who, after death, are still so attached by desire to this world that they stay as ghosts.
4. Narakas or demons – Anger.
At the bottom is the hell realm showing both hot and cold forms of torment. The Sutra of Remembrance of the True Law describes 8 different hells but they are the product of our own mind.
In-between states are called bardo in Tibetan. This is also the locale of consciousness while it is not embodied, as in some dreaming.
In the following drawing animals and hungry ghosts have changed position.
There are different variations on the Wheel of Rebirth. In some there is a buddha figure in each segment; in others symbols are used to represent the dharma.
The 12 Links of Causality
On the outer edge or rim of the wheel are twelve images. They symbolically refer to the factors that interact to determine the consequences of activity or karma.
- ♈ – At top is a blind man with his stick representing spiritual blindness; this is the state of ignorance in which we can easily lose our way. Sometimes we do not even know there is a way.
- ♋ – Next is a potter at work on his own products. These are the deeds and actions we perform ~ the formations, preparations or samskaras. We are responsible for our own pots, not fate.
- ♎ – A monkey playing in a tree. It depicts ordinary attention or consciousness which shifts continuously in the undisciplined mind. Meditation seeks to calm the monkey in order to gain access to the nature of consciousness.
- ♑ – A boat with two people in it, Name and Form. These act together as the conditioned way in which we experience the world. The boat is the mind moving about on ‘reality’.
- ♊ – Next is a house with six openings: five shuttered windows and a closed door. These are the five senses plus a sixth which is the faculty of apperception by which we interpret the input of the senses. That is, the sixth sense is apperception, recognition at the sub-conscious level.
- ♍ – A man and a woman embracing demonstrates contact, the consequence of sensual perceptions.
- ♐ – A person who has been struck in the eye by an arrow. He is wounded by emotion, the subsequent feelings that can have a “fatal” effect. They create suffering.
- ♓ – A woman offering a drink to a man. It illustrates desire that has been stimulated by perceptions and emotions which leads us to drink more from the world of appearances.
- ♉ – A person picking the fruit of his tree. He receives the consequence he expects will be sweet.
- ♌ – A maiden about to cross the stream. In one version of the Wheel, there is one person beckoning another to go or to come back or a couple engaged in intercourse, a standing, leaping or reflective person..
- ♏- A woman giving birth. The new life is determined by the fruits of the old and is attracted to the parents accordingly, in order to be born.
- ♒ – One or two people carrying a burden burden. This is the body, a corpse wrapped up on its way to be disposed of. Other people suffer as they bear the burden of another’s death. Ending and starting a new round.
Through our own minds, we create the six realms of existence and move through them. We create the realms and moves through the endless cycle known as samsara.
Nothing is such a joy as to learn something new, so enjoy each time you are wrong, you get wiser.
Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
Do not believe in anything because it is spoken and rumoured by many.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books.
Do not believe in anything on the authority of your teachers and elders.
But after observations and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason; conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it. (Chop Wood, Carry Water p. 281)
Buddha was once asked, “What is truth?” He replied, “Truth is that which can be used.”
[ What can be used? See truth as a puzzle piece, it fits together with other puzzle pieces and together they create the full picture. A lie is a piece that don’t fit. ]
Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.
He who begins by loving Christianity better than Truth will proceed by loving his own sect of church better than Christianity, and end by loving himself better than all.
The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him. 1897
Constant development is the law of life, and a man who always tries to maintain his dogmas in order to appear consistent drives himself into a false position.
Every formula of every religion has in this age of reason, to submit to the acid test of reason and universal assent.
Faith… must be enforced by reason… when faith becomes blind it dies.
Those who know how to think need no teachers.
And, not least
Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.
Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained.
Lie, n. :
A very poor substitute for the truth, but the only one discovered to date.
Sometimes we have to spend more time trying to understand, instead of pretending that we already do. Katherine gm
The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water, and breeds reptiles of the mind.
Anybody can become angry, that is easy; but to be angry with the right person, and to the right degree, and at the right time, and for the right purpose, and in the right way, that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy.
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
Plato is dear to me, but dearer still is truth.
To say of what is that it is not, or of what is not that it is, is false, while to say of what is that it is, and of what is not that it is not, is true.
Beware the man of one book.
Truth is the equation of thing and intellect.
A judgment is said to be true when it conforms to the external reality.
14, 6: I am the way and the truth and the life.
Personality is only ripe when a man has made the truth his own.
There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.
The truth is a trap: you cannot get it without it getting you; you cannot get the truth by capturing it, only by its capturing you.
The reason I cannot really say that I positively enjoy nature is that I do not quite realize what it is that I enjoy. A work of art, on the other hand, I can grasp. I can — if I may put it this way — find that Archimedian point, and as soon as I have found it, everything is readily clear for me. Then I am able to pursue this one main idea and see how all the details serve to illuminate it.
Knowledge resides in brains that are filled with the thoughts of others, but wisdom resides in the souls of those who attentively listens to their own thoughts.
Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though ’twere his own.
Oblivion is full of people who allow the opinions of others to overrule their belief in themselves.
First and last, what is demanded of genius is love of truth.
Common sense is the genius of humanity.
Few people have the imagination for reality.
We are never deceived; we deceive ourselves.
A person hears only what they understand.
Nothing is more terrible than to see ignorance in action.
Not to keep from error, is the duty of the educator of men, but to guide the erring one, even to let him swill his error out of full cups — that is the wisdom of teachers. Whoever merely tastes of his error, will keep house with it for a long time, … but whoever drains it completely will have to get to know it.
Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
‘I have the courage to be mistaken’.
Sokrates could save his life if he renounced his teachings, but he said: “I think it’s better to have my lyre or a chorus that I might lead out of tune and dissonant, and have the vast majority of men disagree with me and contradict me, than to be out of harmony with myself, to contradict myself, though I’m only one person.”
True wisdom comes to each of us when we realize how little we understand about life, ourselves, and the world around us.
Understanding a question is half an answer
The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.
Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.
To find yourself, think for yourself.
Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.
The unexamined life is not worth living
There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance.
I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
Strong minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, weak minds discuss people.
He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.
If you don’t get what you want, you suffer; if you get what you don’t want, you suffer; even when you get exactly what you want, you still suffer because you can’t hold on to it forever. Your mind is your predicament. It wants to be free of change. Free of pain, free of the obligations of life and death. But change is law and no amount of pretending will alter that reality.
Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance.
Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol, morphine or idealism.
Follow that will and that way which experience confirms to be your own.
In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.
The word “belief” is a difficult thing for me. I don’t believe. I must have a reason for a certain hypothesis. Either I know a thing, and then I know it – I don’t need to believe it.
Truth never triumphs — its opponents just die out.
It is not the possession of truth, but the success which attends the seeking after it, that enriches the seeker and brings happiness to him.
New scientific ideas never spring from a communal body, however organized, but rather from the head of an individually inspired researcher who struggles with his problems in lonely thought and unites all his thought on one single point which is his whole world for the moment.
I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.
No matter where and how far we look, nowhere do we find a contradiction between religion and natural science. On the contrary, we find a complete concordance in the very points of decisive importance. Religion and natural science do not exclude each other, as many contemporaries of ours would believe or fear. They mutually supplement and condition each other. The most immediate proof of the compatibility of religion and natural science, even under the most thorough critical scrutiny, is the historical fact that the very greatest natural scientists of all times — men such as Kepler, Newton, Leibniz— were permeated by a most profound religious attitude.
Anyone who doesn’t take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either.
Everyone should be respected as an individual, but no one idolized.
If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.
Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler.
I very rarely think in words at all. A thought comes, and I may try to express it in words afterwards.
No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.
The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.
Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.
Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.
Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.
He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice.
Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.
I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.
It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.
E. F. Schumacher
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.
Reserve your right to think.
For even to think wrongly is better than not to think at all.
Consequently he who wishes to attain to human perfection, must therefore first study Logic, next the various branches of Mathematics in their proper order, then Physics, and lastly Metaphysics. He, however, who begins with Metaphysics, will not only become confused in matters of religion, but will fall into complete infidelity.
Dalai Lama XIV
Know the rules well, so you can break them effectively.
Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It’s seeing through the facade of pretense. It’s the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true.
Being wrong is erroneously associated with failure, when, in fact, to be proven wrong should be celebrated, for it elevates someone to a new level of understanding.
What we are trying in all these discussions and talks here, is to see if we cannot radically bring about a transformation of the mind. *Not accept things as they are* – but to understand it, to go into it, examine it, give your heart and your mind with every thing that you have to find out. A way of living differently. But that depends on you and not somebody else. Because in this there is no teacher, no pupil. There’s no leader, there is no guru, there’s no master, no savior. You yourself are the teacher, and the pupil, you’re the master, you’re the guru, you are the leader, you are everything! And, to understand is to transform what is“.
You must understand the Whole of life, not just one little part of it.
That is why you must read,
that is why you must look at the skies,
that is why you must sing and dance,
and write poems,
for all that is life.
The more one knows, the more one simplifies.
One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.
The recipe for perpetual ignorance is: be satisfied with your opinions and content with your knowledge.
If you can’t answer a man’s argument, all is not lost; you can still call him vile names.
If you live by what I say, you are truly my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And do not marvel for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
So, you have full responsibility for what you believe!
If the root be in confusion, nothing will be well-governed.
When making a mistake, do not be afraid to correct it.
We journalists… are also extremely impressed with scientists, and we will, frankly, print just about any wacky thing they tell us, especially if it involves outer space.
It sounds paradoxical to say the attainment of scientific truth has been effected, to a great extent, by the help of scientific errors.
“If only the sun-drenched celebrities are being noticed and worshiped, then our children are going to have a tough time seeing the value in the shadows, where the thinkers, probers and scientists are keeping society together.”
To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.
Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.
A lie can travel half way around the world before the truth gets out the front door.
Nevertheless, one feature, at any rate, we have in common with the scientific method of investigation. We take nothing on faith, and we go beyond and higher than any dogmatic religion or materialistic physical science, since our motto—“There is no religion higher than truth” is followed by the principle enunciated by Arago: “outside of pure mathematics never pronounce the word impossible.”
I speak “with absolute certainty” only so far as my own personal belief is concerned. Those who have not the same warrant for their belief as I have, would be very credulous and foolish to accept it on blind faith. Nor does the writer believe any more than her correspondent and his friends in any “authority” let alone “divine revelation”!
Intellect may arrive at certain inferences, but intellect is an unconscious phenomenon. You are almost behaving sleepily. Intelligence is awakening, and unless you are fully awake, whatsoever you decide is bound to be wrong somewhere or other. It is bound to be so, it is doomed to be wrong, because it is a conclusion arrived at by an unconscious mind.
To bring intelligence into activity you don’t need more information, you need more meditation. You need to become more silent, you need to become more thoughtless. You need to become less mind and more heart. You need to become aware of the magic that surrounds you: magic that is life, magic that is God, magic that is in the green trees and the red flowers, magic that is in people’s eyes. Magic is happening everywhere! All is miraculous, but because of your intellect you remain closed inside yourself, clinging to your stupid conclusions arrived at in unconsciousness or given to you by others who are as unconscious as you are.
Savita, intelligence is certainly creative because intelligence brings your totality into functioning — not only a part, a small part, the head. Intelligence vibrates your whole being; each cell of your being, each fiber of your life starts dancing, and falls in a subtle harmony with the total. That’s what creativity is: to pulsate in absolute harmony with the total. That’s how one becomes a Buddha, Christ, Zarathustra. These are the real creative people.
Beinsa Douno (Peter Deunov)
Wise persons do not need long speeches, what they need is a short, but sensible and comprehensible talk.
To truly know the world, look deeply within your own being; to truly know yourself, take real interest in the world.
there’s something else that lies between believing and disbelieving, and that is listening without prejudice
Many people think that they’re working for the good of mankind from morn till eve, but this is questionable.
A clairvoyant can see that efforts coming from materialistic thinking have the wrong effect, and it may lie in some people’s karma that they should wait until they can do certain things. Then a higher being can whisper such a task in his ear, so that it’s not induced by outer circumstances. Life is a destructive process for someone who only devotes himself to outer sense impressions. A meditating esoteric doesn’t let his life be determined by outer circumstances as much. One who makes repeated meditational efforts isn’t exposed to astral confusions at night and makes himself ready to receive the instructions of spiritual beings. And it’s very necessary that we be instructed in this way.
The fact is, no art of any kind can be mastered without humour, especially the art of dealing with human beings.
This means that part of the art of education is the elimination of ill-humour and crossness from the teachers, and the development of friendliness and a love full of humour and fantasy for the children, so that the children may not see portrayed in their teacher the very thing he is forbidding them to be.
Nevertheless one will sometimes have great trouble in controlling the children’s liveliness. You will succeed in controlling it if you possess a thing not sufficiently appreciated in this connection, namely humour.
The teacher must bring humour into the class room as he enters the door.
Essentially, there is no education other than self- education, whatever the level may be. […] Every education is self-education, and as teachers we can only provide the environment for children’s self-education. We have to provide the most favourable conditions where, through our agency, children can educate themselves according to their own destinies.
That is what you need – an enthusiasm in the experience of truth. This enthusiasm is an absolute sine qua non.
For years it has been so terribly painful to me, the way the members of the anthroposophical movement stand there as if they were rooted to the spot – and the young too, almost as much as the old. But now consider what it means, that they can stand there so impassively.
Look at Nietzsche! What a different sort of fellow he was – even if he did get ill from it! He made his Zarathustra become a dancer. Can’t you become dancers – in the sense Nietzsche meant it?
Why, you should be leading lives of joy – deep inner joy in the truth! There is nothing in the world more delightful, nothing more fascinating than the experience of truth.
The right attitude for raising oneself into the higher world is never a sentimental one. Mere sentimentality is of no use for the man who wants to toil up the spiritual heights, in the right way, for it always smacks of egoism. You know how often, when the highest spiritual subjects are being discussed, I mix with our considerations something not designed to take you out of the mood, but simply to banish any egoistic sentimentality from it.
A genuine ascent to the spiritual must be undertaken in purity of soul (which is never destitute of humour), not from a motive of egoistic sentimentality.
Theosophists also often tend to turn away from the outer world. But a loving interest in our surroundings is absolutely necessary if one wants to make progress. One doesn’t have to neglect what one is striving for theosophically thereby.
Love is higher than opinion. If people love one another, the most varied opinions can be reconciled. Hence it is deeply significant that in Theosophy no religion is attacked and no religion is specially singled out, but all are understood, and so there can be brotherhood because the adherents of the most varied religions understand one another.
This is one of the most important tasks for mankind today and in the future: that men should learn to live together and understand one another. If this human fellowship is not achieved, all talk of occult development is empty.
The mood of meditation should not be: I will inwardly lie down in a warm nest, which must become warmer and warmer for me.
Rather, our mood must be that we are about to dip into reality, to grasp something real.
Devoted attention to little things, indeed to the least thing, is what it comes down to.
“Never should the phrase be heard that truths are accepted simply because I have voiced them!
We should sin against the truth were we to say any such thing. One thing or another may be grounded on confidence; but that can never be made into a principle.
Someone else may perhaps be better able to tread the path; but the rule to which every individual should adhere is this: not to accept things on authority, but to put them to the test.
Truth has to conquer its domain with complete disinterestedness. That is why, at bottom, nothing is more hated than the truth, the unvarnished truth. And so there may be many adherents here and there who actually cherish hatred deep down within them. No wonder that this hatred sometimes cuts through the force that builds a wall against it — cuts through this force because the hatred has been accumulating for so long. Such hatred is far more widespread than is imagined and it is a factor that must be reckoned with.
The occultist will never dream of imposing dogmas.
He is one who tells what he has seen and tested in the astral and spiritual worlds or what has been revealed to him by trustworthy and reliable teachers.
He does not desire to convert but to quicken in others the sense that has awakened in him and to enable them to see likewise.
The Rosicrucian way, which leaves the pupil with the greatest possible independence. … When we are on the physical plane, we perceive with the physical senses only what is to be found on that plane. Astral perceptions are valid for the astral plane; devachanic hearing is valid only in Devachan. Thus each plane has its own specific form of perception.
But one activity — logical thinking — goes through all worlds. Logic is the same on all three planes. Thus on the physical plane you can learn something which is valid also for the higher planes; and this is the method followed by Rosicrucian training when on the physical plane it gives primary attention to thinking, and for this purpose uses the means available on the physical plane.
A penetrative thinking can be cultivated by studying theosophical truths, or by practising mental exercises. Anyone who wishes further training for the intellect can study books such as Truth and Science, and The Philosophy of Freedom, which are written deliberately in such a way that a thinking trained by them can move with certainty on the highest planes. Even a person who studies these books and knows nothing of Theosophy might find his way about in the higher worlds.
But, as I have said, the teachings of Theosophy act in the same way.
The first condition is the cultivation of absolutely clear thinking. For this purpose a man must rid himself of the will-o’-the-wisps of thought, even if only for a very short time during the day – about five minutes (the longer, the better).
He must become the ruler in his world of thought. He is not the ruler if external circumstances, occupation, some tradition or other, social relationships, even membership of a particular race, the daily round of life, certain activities and so forth, determine a thought and how he works it out.
There is, in truth, no difference between esoteric knowledge and all the rest of man’s knowledge and proficiency. This esoteric knowledge is no more of a secret for the average human being than writing is a secret for those who have never learned it. And just as all can learn to write who choose the correct method, so, too, can all who seek the right way become esoteric students and even teachers….He must begin with a certain fundamental attitude of soul.
In spiritual science this fundamental attitude is called the path of veneration, of devotion to truth and knowledge. Without this attitude no one can become a student.
The disposition shown in their childhood by subsequent students of higher knowledge is well known to the experienced in these matters. There are children who look up with religious awe to those whom they venerate…. Only it must not be thought that this disposition leads to submissiveness and slavery. What was once a childlike veneration for persons becomes, later, a veneration for truth and knowledge.
Experience teaches that they can best hold their heads erect who have learned to venerate where veneration is due; and veneration is always fitting when it flows from the depths of the heart. … If we do not develop within ourselves this deeply rooted feeling that there is something higher than ourselves, we shall never find the strength to evolve to something higher.
The initiate has only acquired the strength to lift his head to the heights of knowledge by guiding his heart to the depths of veneration and devotion. The heights of the spirit can only be climbed by passing through the portals of humility. You can only acquire right knowledge when you have learned to esteem it. Man has certainly the right to turn his eyes to the light, but he must first acquire this right. …
A person who darts from one impression of the outer world to another, who constantly seeks distraction, cannot find the way to higher knowledge. The student must not blunt himself to the outer world, but while lending himself to its impressions, he should be directed by his rich inner life.
This life of the soul in thought, which gradually widens into a life in spiritual being, is called by Gnosis, and by Spiritual Science, Meditation (contemplative reflection).
This meditation is the means to supersensible knowledge. But the student in such moments must not merely indulge in feelings; he must not have indefinite sensations in his soul. That would only hinder him from reaching true spiritual knowledge. His thoughts must be clear, sharp and definite, and he will be helped in this if he does not cling blindly to the thoughts that rise within him. Rather must he permeate himself with the lofty thoughts by which men already advanced and possessed of the spirit were inspired at such moments.
He should start with the writings which themselves had their origin in just such revelation during meditation. In the mystic, gnostic and spiritual scientific literature of today the student will find such writings, and in them the material for his meditation. The seekers of the spirit have themselves set down in such writings the thoughts of the divine science which the Spirit has directed his messengers to proclaim to the world.
For through his I the human being attains to control of his sensations, feelings, thoughts, instincts, passions, and desires. Perception and thought cannot be left to themselves in the soul. They must be regulated through attentive thinking.
It is the I that employs these laws of thinking and through them brings order into the life of visualization and thought. It is similar with desires, instincts, inclinations, and passions. The ethical principles become guides of these soul powers. Through moral judgment the I becomes the guide of the soul in this realm.
If the human being now draws a higher I out of his ordinary I, the latter becomes independent in a certain sense. From this I just as much of living force is withdrawn as is bestowed upon the higher I.
Let us suppose, however, the case in which the human being has not yet developed a sufficient ability and firmness in the laws of thought and in his power of judgment, and he wishes to give birth to his higher I at this stage of development. He will be able to leave behind for his everyday I only so much thought power as he has previously developed. If the measure of regulated thinking is too small, then there will appear a disordered, confused, fantastic thinking and judgment in the ordinary I that has become independent. Because the new-born I can only be weak in such a personality, the disturbed lower I will gain domination over supersensible perception, and man will not show equilibrium in his power of judgment in observing the supersensible world.
If he had developed sufficient ability in logical thinking, he would be able, without fear, to permit the ordinary I to have its independence.
This is also true in the domain of the ethical. If the human being has not attained firmness in moral judgment, if he has not gained sufficient control over his inclinations, instincts, and passions, then he will make his ordinary I independent in a state in which these soul powers act. It may happen that the human being in describing the knowledge he has experienced in the supersensible is not governed by the same high sense of truth that guides him in what he brings to his consciousness in the physical outer world.
With such a demoralized sense of truth, he might believe anything to be spiritual reality that in truth is only his own fantastic imagining. Into this sense of truth there must act firmness of ethical judgment, certainty of character, keenness of conscience, which are developed in the lower, first I, before the higher, second I becomes active for the purpose of supersensible cognition.
Indeed, we only understand this physical world aright when we realize it to be this copy of reality. It behooves us, however, to feel the true reality within us [Astral world]; we must be aware of our connection with the spiritual world. And this is only possible if the bond that links us with pre-earthly existence remains intact.
This bond is strengthened by a love of truth and Integrity. Nothing establishes man’s true and original sense of existence so firmly as a feeling for truth and truthfulness.
To feel himself in duty bound first to “prove all things” he utters, to set due restraint on all his words — this helps to consolidate the sense of existence that is worthy of his being.
To be aware of the spirit within the physical body — with this, indeed, the sense of being is connected. There is, in effect, an intimate kinship between the physical body and this ideal of Truth.
After Atlantis was destroyed by water, continued evolution resulted in our contemporary fifth race, during which deductive reasoning was a special achievement. This enabled the human race to bring art and science to a high level of development, which previously had not been possible.
People think often enough that it is unnecessary to talk about the principles of man’s being, or the evolution of humanity or the different planetary evolutions, they would rather acquire beautiful feelings, they do not want to study earnestly.
Nevertheless, however many beautiful feelings one acquires in one’s soul it is impossible to rise into the spiritual worlds by that alone. Rosicrucian theosophy does not try to arouse the feelings, but through the stupendous facts of the spiritual worlds to let the feelings themselves begin to resound.
The Rosicrucian feels it a kind of impertinence to take people by storm with feelings. … It is only an empty phrase to say one should address oneself direct to the feelings, that is just indolence. Rosicrucian theosophy lets the facts speak, and if these thoughts flow into the feeling nature and overpower it, then that is the right way.”
Rosicrucian Theosophy does not wish to revel in feelings, it wishes to bring the facts of the spirit before your eyes. The pupil must take part, must let himself be stimulated by the facts which have been described, feelings and sensations must be aroused in him through them.
In this sense Spiritual Science should become a powerful impulse for the sphere of feeling, but at the same time be that which leads us direct into the facts of supersensible perceptions, which lets them first arise as thoughts and then leads the seeker upwards into the higher worlds.
Reality is not contained in the abstract concept; it is, however, contained in thoughtful observation, which does not one-sidedly consider either concept or percept alone, but rather the union of the two. PoF
Our highest endeavor must be to develop free human beings who are able of themselves to impart purpose and direction to their lives. The need for imagination, a sense of truth, and a feeling of responsibility—these three forces are the very nerve of education.
Fanatism and Objectivity
How does a fanatic behave? He wants to convert people as quickly as possible — while they, as a rule, do not want to be converted. Everybody is expected immediately to believe what the fanatic wants them to believe and he is angry when this does not happen.
In our day, when someone sets out to expound a particular subject, people simply do not believe that his aim may be not to voice his own views but something quite different, namely, the thoughts and opinions of the one of whom he is writing. For many years I was held to be a follower of Nietzsche because I once wrote an absolutely objective book about him.
People simply cannot understand that the aim of a writer may be to give an objective exposition. They think that everyone must be a fanatic on the subject of which he happens to be speaking!
Imaginaire Thinking – Memory
The pupil now, however, begins to perceive his etheric body more directly. The most striking change that takes place in the etheric body, which many do not appreciate at all, and which is not recognised as a change in the etheric body, although it is such, is that as a result of esoteric or theosophical development it becomes very distinctly evident that the power of memory begins somewhat to diminish.
Through esoteric development, the ordinary memory almost invariably suffers diminution. At first one’s memory becomes poorer. If the student does not wish to have a less efficient memory, he cannot undergo an esoteric development.
Especially does that memory cease to be strongly active which may be described as the mechanical memory, best developed in human beings in childhood and youth, and generally meant when memory is alluded to.
Many esotericists have to complain of the diminution of their memory, for it soon becomes perceptible. In any case, this depreciation of the memory can be observed long before one perceives the more delicate things which have just been explained. But as the student, by pursuing correct theosophical training, can never suffer injury in his physical body — in spite of its becoming more mobile — neither will his memory be injured for long. …
Now, as regards the memory, we must also do the correct thing. We lose the memory belonging to the external life: but we need suffer no injury if we take care to develop more interest, a deeper interest in all that affects us in life, more concern than hitherto.
We must especially acquire a sympathetic interest for the things which to us are important. Previously we developed a more mechanical memory, and the working of this mechanical memory was fully reliable for a time, even without any particular liking for the things observed; but this ceases.
It will be noticed that when undergoing a theosophical or esoteric development it is easy to forget things. But only those things fly away for which one has not a sympathetic interest, which one does not particularly care for, which do not become part of one’s soul, as it were.
On the other hand, that which appeals to one’s soul fixes itself in the memory all the more. Therefore, the student must try systematically to bring this about. The following may be experienced. Let us imagine a man in his youth, before he came to Theosophy when he read a novel he was quite unable to forget it; he could relate it again and again. Later, when he has come into Theosophy, if he reads a novel, it very often vanishes from his mind; he cannot recount it. But if a student takes a book, of which he has been told — or tells himself — that it might be valuable, and reads it through once and then tries directly afterwards to repeat it mentally, and not only to repeat it, but repeat it backwards, the last matters first and the first last; if he takes the trouble to go through certain details a second time, if he becomes so absorbed in it that he even takes a piece of paper and writes brief thoughts on it, and tries to put the question: — what aspect of this subject especially interests me — then he will find that in this way he develops a different kind of memory. It will not be the same memory. By using it, the difference can be accurately observed.
When we use the human memory, things come into our soul as remembrances; but if, in the manner just described, we systematically acquire a memory as an esotericist or theosophist, then it is as though the things thus experienced had remained stationary in time.
We learn to look back into time, as it were, and it really seems as though we were looking at what we were remembering; indeed, we shall notice that the things become more and more picture-like and the memory more and more imaginative.
If we have acted in the manner just described — for instance, with a book — then, when it is necessary to bring the matter to mind again, we need only meet with something in some way connected with it, and we shall look back, as it were, at the occasion when we were studying the book, and see ourselves reading it.
The remembrance does not arise, but the whole picture appears. Then we are able to notice that, while previously we only read the book, now the contents actually appear. We see them as at a distance in time; the memory becomes a seeing of pictures at a distance in time. This is the very first beginning, elementary to be sure, of gradually learning to read the Akashic Record.
The memory is replaced by learning to read in the past. And very often a man who has gone through a certain esoteric development may have almost entirely lost his memory, yet he is none the worse for it, because he sees things in retrospect. He sees those with which he himself was connected, with special clearness. I am now saying something which, if it were said to anyone not connected with Theosophy, would only make him laugh. He could not help laughing, because he could not form any idea of what it means when an esotericist tells him that he no longer has any memory, and yet that he knows quite well what has happened, because he can see it in the past. The first man would say: ‘What you have is in reality a very excellent memory,’ for he cannot conceive of the change that has taken place. It is a change in the etheric body that has brought it about.
Then, as a rule, this changing of the memory is connected with something else, viz., we form, we might say, a new opinion about our inner man. For we cannot acquire this retrospective vision without at the same time adopting a certain standpoint as regards our experience. Thus when at a later date a man looks back at something he has done, as in the case described above about the book, for instance, when he sees himself in that position, he will, of course, have to judge for himself whether he was wise or foolish so to occupy himself.
With this retrospect there is closely united another experience, viz., a sort of self-criticism. The pupil at this stage cannot do otherwise than define his attitude towards his past. He will reproach himself about some things; he will be glad he has attained others. In short, he cannot do otherwise than judge the past he thus surveys, so that, in fact, he becomes a sterner judge of himself, of his past life.
He feels within him the etheric body becoming active, the etheric body which — as may be seen by the retrospect after death — has the whole of his past within it; he feels this etheric body as included in himself, as something that lives in him and defines his value. Indeed, such a change takes place in the etheric body that very often he feels the impulse to make this self-retrospect and observe one thing or another, so as to learn in quite a natural manner to judge of his own worth as a man.
While in ordinary life one lives without being aware of the etheric body, in the retrospective view of one’s own life it can be perceived, and this gradually rouses in the student an impulse to make greater efforts when he undergoes an esoteric development. The esoteric life makes it necessary for one to pay more attention to one’s merits and demerits, errors and imperfections. [GA-145]
Thinking in Words
Our ordinary thought life reaches only up to the astral world. No matter how brilliant our thoughts may be, thoughts that are not sustained by feelings go no further than into the astral world; they have no significance for other worlds. You will certainly understand in this connection what is said in regard to external science, dry, matter-of-fact external science.
No man can by means of thoughts not permeated by emotion affirm anything regarding other worlds than the astral realm. Under ordinary circumstances, the thinking of the scientist, of the chemist, the mathematician, runs its course without any sort of feeling. This goes no further than just under the surface. Indeed, scientific research even demands that it shall proceed in this way, and for this reason it penetrates only into the astral world.
Where there is desire for discussion, however, there is as a rule no knowledge of the truth. Discussion begins only when there is a lack of knowledge, and it is always and everywhere the sign of a decline regarding the seriousness of a subject when it is discussed. Disintegration of a particular trend is always proclaimed by discussions. It is important that in spiritual science we come increasingly to understand that the wish for discussion may really be taken as a sign of ignorance.
On the other hand, the opposite of discussion, the will to learn, the will gradually to comprehend what is in question, should be cultivated.
Only when delight or repugnance are associated with the thoughts of the research scientist is there added to these thoughts the element needed in order to penetrate the world of Devachan.
Only when emotions enter into thoughts, into concepts, when we feel one thing to be good and another evil, do we combine with thoughts that which carries them into the Heavenly World. Only then can we get a glimpse into deeper foundations of existence. If we wish to grasp something belonging to the world of Devachan, no theories help us in the least. The only thing that helps us is to unite feelings with our thoughts. Thinking carries us only into the astral world.
To say something that is incorrect is not the worst thing that can happen, for the world itself will soon put one right about it; but it is really serious to regard a one-sided truth as the absolute truth and to persist in so regarding it.
Again and again one can listen: this is my opinion, I think this or that… As if it matters, what one or the other thinks! The point is much more to what the truth is!
KGM: “When Rudolf Steiner made the first Goetheanum, an artist asked if he could design the doorknobs. Steiner said “Yes, but you’ll have to design the whole of Goetheanum around them”.
All of our reality is an integral whole, and that includes good art. So when we study esoteric science we should look for the whole pattern, and not draw conclusions out of details.”
Compare the soul of an average European man with the soul of some of the people Darwin came across on his travels. The soul of contemporary man has a sense of right and wrong, of good and evil, of true and false.
Darwin wanted to explain to an aborigine, who was still cannibalistic, that one should not eat fellow human beings, that it was bad to do such things. The aborigine looked at him strangely and said, “How can you know that, you have to first have eaten him. Only if we have eaten him can we know if he was good or bad.”
That is how an imperfect soul understands the world; it will develop through time, becoming more and more perfect. Our individual souls do not arrive in the world like new-born babies but each soul has developed first through many imperfect incarnations in which at first it understood nothing more of right and wrong, than the pleasant or unpleasant taste on the tongue and the like.
Stage by stage the soul has evolved and only through many incarnations has it learned to get to the level it has reached at present.
‘The more often a human being incarnates, the stronger becomes his character and his moral sense, and the more numerous and greater the talents and abilities.’ GA 55 VIII.
Thinking… is no more and no less an organ of perception than the eye or ear. Just as the eye perceives colours and the ear sounds, so thinking perceives ideas.
I have changed “ego” to “I” in Steiner’s texts as it’s a better translation of the German “Ich”, as “ego” is used in modern New Age to describe the Sentient Soul.
You cannot go to Shambhala for it is not a place. The Kingdom of Shambhala exists in the hearts and minds of the Shambhala warriors. The Shambhala Warrior
Chögyam Trungpa has written an interesting book “Shambhala: the Sacred Path of the Warrior ” which tells of a pre Buddhist Tibetan religion of the Shambhala Warriers. There is a good page describing the ideas of the book here Shambhala the Path of the Warrior. See also WikiPedia.
The Rigden is the Kings of Shambhala and they match the Bodhisattva’s of Devachan:
“The imperial rulers of Shambhala, who are called the Rigden Kings, are inhabitants of the cosmic mirror. They are referred to as ultimate drala. When you contact the wisdom of the cosmic mirror, you are meeting the ultimate dralas, the Rigden kings of Shambhala. Their vast vision lies behind all the activities of mankind, in the open, unconditioned space of mind itself. In that way, they watch over and protect human affairs, so to speak. This is quite different from the notion that the Rigdens are living on some celestial plane, from which they look down at the earth.” Taken from here by Chögyam Trungpa.
And more here Shambhala Lineage, by Chogyam Trungpa:
Fundamentally, the notion of lineage in the Shambhala teachings is connected with how the wisdom of the cosmic mirror is transmitted and continued in human life, human existence. The quality of the cosmic mirror is that it is unconditioned, vast open space. It is an eternal and completely open space, space beyond question. In the realm of the cosmic mirror, your mind extends its vision completely, beyond doubt. Before thoughts, before the thinking process takes place, there is the accommodation of the cosmic mirror, which has no boundary—no center and no fringe. As we discussed, the way to experience this space is through the sitting practice of meditation.
Experiencing the realm of the cosmic mirror gives rise to wisdom—the wisdom of vast and deep perception, beyond conflict, which is called drala. There are various levels of experiencing drala. The primordial or ultimate level of drala is experiencing directly the wisdom of the cosmic mirror. When you experience that wisdom, then you are contacting the origin of the Shambhala lineage, the source of wisdom.
So, when you contact the wisdom of the cosmic mirror, you are meeting the ultimate dralas, the Rigden kings of Shambhala. Once having made a connection to ultimate drala, it is possible for the primordial wisdom and vision of the Rigden kings to be passed down to the level of human perception. The vastness of perception can be captured in simplicity, a single perception, on the spot. When we allow vastness to enter our perception, then it becomes drala; it becomes brilliant and luminous—magical. When we have this experience, then we are meeting what are called the inner dralas. The inner dralas are empowered by the wisdom of the cosmic mirror, the Rigdens, to manifest brilliance and elegance in this phenomenal world.
The Eightfold Path
The Wheel of Dharma
1. Right View –
I view things from what appears to me outwardly.
Man attains this kind of knowledge about the world when he acquires a right view of things, a view that has nothing to do with sympathy or antipathy or preference of any sort. He must strive as best he can to acquire the right view of each thing, purely according to what presents itself to him outwardly. That is the first principle: the Right View of things.
2. Right Intent –
I judge in accordance with my right view.
3. Right Speech –
I give true expression of my right view and judgment.
4. Right Focus –
I let my right view, judgment, and speech become deed.
5. Right Alertness –
I act in my highest and best line of work.
6. Right Purpose –
I work steadily till right action becomes a habit in me.
7. Right Effort –
I link the present with the past and thus account for what I have already learned in previous lives.
8. Right Motivation –
I let the things of the world speak directly to me without partiality to views of other humans or my former incarnations.
Buddha – Mercury
This is the Eightfold Path, of which Buddha said to his disciples that if followed it would gradually lead to the extinction of the thirst for existence with its attendant suffering, and impart to the soul something that brings liberation from elements enslaving it from past lives.
Throat Chakra, the Sixteen Petaled Lotus
The Eightfold Path is connected to the Vishuddha, the throat Chakra or the Sixteen Petaled Lotus as Rudolf Steiner Calls the astral organ.
In “Knowledge of the Higher Worlds And Its Attainment” Rudolf Steiner goes more in depth with the Eightfold Path. The Initial words from the text about the Sixteen Petaled Lotus:
The organ in the vicinity of the larynx has sixteen petals or spokes; the one in the region of the heart twelve, and the one in the pit of the stomach ten.
Now certain activities of the soul are connected with the development of these organs, and anyone devoting himself to them in a certain definite way contributes something to the development of the corresponding organs. In the sixteen-petaled lotus, eight of its sixteen petals were developed in the remote past during an earlier stage of human evolution. Man himself contributed nothing to this development; he received them as a gift from nature, at a time when his consciousness was in a dull, dreamy condition. At that stage of human evolution they were in active use, but the manner of their activity was only compatible with that dull state of consciousness. As consciousness became clearer and brighter, the petals became obscured and ceased their activity. Man himself can now develop the remaining eight petals by means of conscious exercises, and thereby the whole lotus flower becomes luminous and mobile. The acquisition of certain faculties depends on the development of each one of the sixteen petals. Yet, as already shown, only eight can be consciously developed; the remainder then appear of their own accord.
The development proceeds in the following manner. The student must first apply himself with care and attention to certain functions of the soul hitherto exercised by him in a careless and inattentive manner. There are eight such functions …
[In Danish: “Hvordan når man til erkendelse af de højere verdener?” af Rudolf Steiner.]
I have made the presentation of Buddhas Eightfold Path from Rudolf Steiners lectures on The Gospel of Luke.
The goal was to make a short and simple description of the path, followed with references for deeper understanding of the why.
Se also the Twelf Petaled Lotus, Ahanhata, The Heart Chakra:
And the Six Petaled Lotus, Svadhistana, The Sacral Chakra:
Kristina Kaine has elaborated over the theme in “Eightfold Path of Buddha in the Gospel of St John“.
A meditation for modern man: Meditation as contemplative inquiry : when knowing becomes love / Arthur Zajonc
See also The Noble Eightfold Path at Wikipedia.
We all talk about our feminine and masculine sides without really knowing what we talk about.
I read Theosophy, Anthroposophy, Rosicrucian literature, Jung, Fromm, and other psychoanalysts, adding to my intuitive understanding, but I still didn’t grasp it fully.
Many interesting, partly frustrating, experiences gave finally a long searched result. I will not describe precisely what Animus and Anima are, as it is explained better by others, but I will show where they fit into the seven layer model of man, and how they fit into the Steiner and Aristotle model.
I will take it a little further by explaining a few but basic rules around Dream Interpretation and the Roles of the participating figures.
Jung and the Aristotelian model of the Soul
The model of Steiner/Aristotle split in three groups, the Body, the Soul, and the Spirit. Each part can again be split in three, the body as Physical, Ether, and Sentient body, and the soul as Sentient, Intellectual, and Consciousness soul, and the Spirit as Spirit self, Life spirit, and Spirit body. The model is described in The Essential Nature of Man.
Age contains the periods where each body and relating chakra is developed. (7) signifies change of teeth and (14) start of puberty. The Crown with 49 is by grace not through work. Following the Hebrew’s a person was first adult at 50.
From – To
|Feminine associations||Usage In Dreams|
|Physical Body||0 – (7)
|Ether or Life body
|(7) – (14)
|(14) – 21
|21 – 28
|Intellectual soul or
Heart and Mind soul
|28 – 35
|Maria, Cleophas wife|
|35 – 42
|Virgin Sophia||Higher I
The Divine Child
Tiphareth Transformed astral body
|Spirit self||42 – 49
The Wise Man or Woman
Chesed Transformed etheric body
|Life spirit||49 – 56
||The World Mother|
Geburah Transformed physical body
|Spirit body||56 – 63
In Dream Interpretation
The three Soul components:
- Sentient soul represents Anima for men and Animus for woman,
- Intellectual soul represents the Lower ‘I’/Persona/Ego, and
- Consciousness soul represents the Higher ‘I’.
Anima/Animus represents the base unconscious Feelings and the Ether body, and are represented by female actors in mens dreams and male actors in womens dreams. It can be your husband/wife, friends, colleagues, classmates, old girlfriends/boyfriends, or an unknown person.
As it concerns feelings, you seldom speak with your Anima/Animus, it’s mostly some kind of action, Love or some affection, or the opposite to that, showing the state between your feminine and masculine side.
Animus/Anima can in real seldom situations represent your physical body, if there is something which should be taken care of. And remember, it’s the opposite of your own gender.
Ego, Persona or Lower ‘I’
The Ego, the Lower ‘I’ represents Thinking, and is represented by the dreamer in the dream. One of the goals is to unify the Lower ‘I’ with the corresponding Anima/Animus, that is Feeling and Thinking. The relation is connected with the Chymical Wedding.
Shadows or False Ego’s
There can also be other actors (Shadows), playing the role of False Ego‘s . Typically friends, classmates, colleagues, or less common, typically in groups, unknown players. These persons sometimes characterize traits which tells what the dream is about, but in all circumstances it’s easier for the “dreaming facility” to use an existing person than to create a new personality.
The Shadow’s I see as debris flowing around in the unconscious mind blocking the Chakras. They are the background for the plot of the dreams.
The False Ego’s are the persona’s we set up when relating to other people to hide us behind, protect our selves, or to impress other persons. Their role in the dreams are to show that they are there and to remove them you have to recognize them. There can of course be persons in the dream which is only extras just to give the background, but then they will be out of focus, they will be difficult to remember.
Higher ‘I’, The Divine Child
The Higher ‘I’ represents the Willing, and is usually represented by a child, or teenager in the dream. Whatever happens to the child is a result of your life. The more the child prosper the better. The goal is to become the Divine Child.
The Wise Teacher
One more role is the Teacher, which I presumes represents the Spirit self, and in dreams usually shown as your Father, Mother, a Teacher, or Chief from your real life, who you have some respect for. They can in the dream be connected with the next floor upstairs. Can be both sexes, but I think it’s mostly of the opposite gender.
Three other symbols which are paramount in dreams are your House, various Schools, and Transport Vehicles:
In dreams the House usually represents your physical and psychical state of development. Is it clean, is it in chaos, are you building on your second or third floor, is it finished?
The schools tells a little about how it is going, are you in a kindergarten, school, High School, or the University? Are there room for you, have you forgotten your books, and so forth.
In dreams transport vehicles tells about how your journey is progressing. If you are riding a bicycle you are not doing especially well. Your car can go out of gasoline, you may have lost your ticket for the bus, come late for the train, or you got a first class ticket for the airplane.
It is extremely seldom that numbers in dreams are remembered, as they normally have no meaning. It’s like reading a book in a dream, where the reading is remembered not the text. If you remember a number it’s important to write it down quickly. What the number signifies depends on the context, it could be the number of days, time of day, number of hours, a specific date, and so forth.
It’s also seldom to hear Noun’s in dreams, so when your hear one, try to find out what it stands for. Some of these names can be quite humorous, but still contain vital information.
Anonymous dream persons
Actual people from the real world will be played by anonymous players, you have to use the context to decipher the real world implication.
Here and Now
Most dreams are rather concrete, and they accentuate specific problems from the day before, and these problems are typically waves of underlying currents, life themes, which should be handled.
What makes dreams difficult to understand are that we live in the middle of our problems, that we cant overview our own situation; but our dreams can, and if we learn to interpret our dreams it will help us to understand our own situation.
Dream Interpretation and Chakras
From time to time there may be dreams telling about your progress or in which areas you have problems; here some symbols and colors related to the Chakras.
The Figure are the symbol of the Chakra, hold the cursor above the symbol, a short text maybe with a word in UPPERCASE, tells what which part to look for, as an example is Muladhara’s symbol a Square. Clicking on a symbol opens a Vortex of Light description of the Chakra. The Crown chakra has no dream symbol as I am aware of.
|Sahasrara Crown||Purple||Moon ?|
|Indigo||Clairvoyance, psychic abilities, imagination, dreaming, Mercury.|
|Vishuddha Throat||Blue||White elephant||Pressure when you are not communicating your emotions properly, Venus.|
|Ahanhata Heart||Green||Birds, animals with antlers||Lack of compassion, Sun.|
|Yellow||Sacrificial animal||Personal Power, anger or a sense of victimization, Mars.|
|Svadhistana SacralHara||Orange||Water animals||Emotional problems or sexual guilt, Jupiter.|
|Muladhara Root||Red||Elephant, horse, and other big and heavy animals||Earth, survival, grounding, stillness, Saturn.|
The Tin Drum
A friend of mine had a dream where she was going in front of a group of girls in a concentration camp playing on a tin drum.
The group of girls were her false ego’s, she put up whenever she met any of her friends, family, and so forth. She was trapped like in a concentration camp by that behavior. She understood the dream herself.
To met a person again.
I walked on the platform going to get a train. I met a young girl, but walked on. I then sat down between two girls, where one of them was the same I passed earlier, but older.
I were in a discotheque and met a girl, I then continued walking around before i ran into her again.
Both dreams was preparing the same meeting with an old acquaintance, and contained in the small group of dreams about the future.
A real short dream
Saw a Trampoline.
The person had the previous day done a lot of work without coming anywhere; if the dream theme is recurring a change in the theme of life is needed.
Dream Interpretation: A Biblical Understanding
Af Herman Riffel
Many believers read the scriptural accounts of dreams and never think it could happen to them. Today, though, many are realizing that God has never ceased using dreams and visions to guide, instruct, and warn. This book will give you a biblical understanding of dreams that you never had before!
I find that a very useful guideline for dream interpretation, especially at first, is to take everything in the dream to represent an aspect of the dreamer.
For example, if the dream involves the person travelling in a car with their uncle, then the car represents some aspect of the person’s life, and the uncle also represents a part of the person. This isn’t the only way to interpret dreams, but it’s a very good starting point, I think.
Here’s the step-by-step approach that I use.
I hope that by going through the example and then trying the exercise you’ll start to get a feel for what’s involved in trying to interpret a dream, whether it’s your own or someone else’s.
This Step by Step Approach contains a description of Dream Interpretation which is quite usable with my terminology. It also contains descriptions of how to combine the I Ching with Dream Interpretation.
Example: The House in Your Dream
Each dream image holds enormous data, emotional response, and created patterns of behaviour. So in considering the house in your dream you need to remember you are in touch with a full surround databank of fantastic information about you, your past and your possibilities. You can interact with this information by exploring it in the right way. And to help with this let us look at and question some of the possibilities your dream house might hold.
Contains many interesting and usable entries about the Archetypes used in dreams.
Example with House:
Seeing a house in your dream, represents your own soul and self. Specific rooms in the house indicate a specific aspect of your psyche. In general, the attic represents your intellect, the basement represents the unconscious, etc. If the house is empty, then it indicates feelings of insecurity. If the house is shifting, then it suggests that you are going through some personal changes and changing your belief system. Dreaming that you are cleaning your house means your need to clear out your thoughts and getting rid of old ways. You are seeking self-improvement. Seeing an old, run-down house in your dream, represents your old beliefs, attitudes and how you used to think or feel. A situation in your current life may be bringing about those same old attitudes and feelings. Alternatively, the old house may symbolize your need to update you mode of thinking. Dreaming that your house is broken into, suggests that you are feeling violated. It may refer to a particular relationship or current situation in your life. Alternatively, it indicates that some unconscious material is attempting to make itself known. There are some aspects of yourself that you have denied. Dreaming of a haunted house means unfinished emotional business, related to your childhood family, dead relatives, or repressed memories and feelings. Dreaming that a house disappeared, indicates that you are not feeling grounded. You feel uprooted by a particular circumstance or relationship in your life.
This entry looks quite ok, I havent checked other entries.
Dreams as not really nonsensical, but a lot of them are crypted somehow. Major psychologists have studied how dreams work and why they appear, and whether they occur according to patterns, and which patterns. Carl Jung, Medard Boss, Calvin Hall, Montague Ullman and others have decreed that dreams do carry meanings, but you need to understand how dreaming functions. Dreams functions on their own terms. Through the basics of dream interpretations to get a hold on many of them.
Some dreams reflect mind content that pertains to tasks and problems and other issues the mind gets deeply involved in. And parts of the jumbled “video clips” within may just present “left-overs” from days before. Dream interpretations need to be tentative, perhaps open-ended too. Consider the deep feelings and messages involved in the recurrent and most impressive dreams you have had.
Decode and interpret the flows of various icons, images, scenes, actors, happenings, concomitant feelings so as to arrive at tentative or putative postulates about what impressive dreams could mean. In such work there is help in mulling over single, outstanding ideas or episodes inside the stream or flow of a single dream. Take notes of them and learn to draw special illustrations that serve you in a log book. all of it could help, but it may be time-consuming work that had better be done for the whole life. In short, you have to learn to assess well.
Here we come upon something of the utmost importance for the applicability of dream-analysis: the dream describes the inner situation of the dreamer, but the conscious mind denies its truth and reality, or admits it only grudgingly.
More on Carl Jung’s Archetypes.
Jungian dream interpretation: a handbook of theory and practice
Sufism, Dreamwork, and Jungian Psychology
In Greek Sculpture and the Four Elements J.L.Benson references Steiner on Aristotle’s description of the soul of man:
Aristotle distinguishes in man the vegetative soul, by which he means approximately what we call ether body, then the aesthetikon or sensitive soul, which we call the sentient or astral body. Next he speaks of orektikon which corresponds to sentient soul, then comes kinetikon corresponding to the intellectual soul, and he uses the term dianoetikon for the consciousness soul.
J.L.Benson writes in Greek Color Theorie and the Four Elements :
To my knowledge Steiner, working closely with concepts from Goethe’s scientific work, is the only modern thinker to give full weight to the macrocosmic aspect of the microcosmic foursome. Above the physical body (which Aristotle dealt with en passant : de An. 411a he uses the term etheric body for Aristotle’s threptikon or nutritive soul, astral or sentient body for the aesthetikon or sensitive soul and ego for nous .
One gradually notices that one’s dream life takes on a more regular character. The spiritual world flows into this at first. Meditation is the occult key for this. One should get a notebook and briefly write down characteristic dreams in the morning. Thereby, one gets practice in retaining what flows to one from higher worlds. That’s the first elementary method to later get to bringing spiritual experiences through, that is, that they break through into bright day consciousness. Dreams that are only reminiscences from daily life or that are based on heart disturbances, headaches or other bodily conditions are only of value if they’re clothed in a symbolical form, for instance if the thumping heart appears as a cooking oven, or the painful brain as a dome into which animals creep, etc. Only the symbolism is of value here and not the dream’s content. For the symbolic form is initially used by the spiritual world to introduce us to the forces of higher worlds. That’s why one must pay attention to the fine points of this symbolism. In your case — according to your capacities — it’ll also be good if you compare the dreams that you become aware of with the experiences of the next day. For your dreams may soon take on a portentous character. If this happens we’ll say some more about how this thing can be made productive for your spiritual life. Please give these indications a try and tell me how things are going in about eight days.
This site offers an abbreviated introduction to the Chakra System, applications for meditation and healing using this system, and its relationship to other healing systems.
Visual appealing page on the Chakras.
Contains information on a deeper Esoteric level