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Initiation and Its Results
GA 10

V. The Dissociation of Human Personality During Initiation

[ 1 ] During deep sleep the human soul does not register impressions through the medium of the physical senses. In that state the perceptions of the external world do not touch it. It is, in truth, outside the coarser part of human nature, the physical body, and is only connected with the finer bodies—known as the astral and etheric—which escape the observation of the physical senses. The activity of these finer bodies does not cease in sleep. Even as the physical body stands in a certain relation to the things and beings of its own world, even as it is affected by these and affects them, so is it also with the soul in a higher world, but in this latter case, experience continues during sleep. The soul is then veritably in full activity, but we cannot know of these personal activities as long as we have no higher senses, by means of which we may observe, during sleep, what happens around us and what we do ourselves, just as well as we can use our ordinary senses in daily life for the observation of our physical environment. Occult training consists (as has been shown in the foregoing chapters) in the upbuilding of just such higher senses.

[ 2 ] By means of examples like that which follows one can readily conceive how the soul with its finer vehicles may continue its activity during the intervals when the physical body is at rest. It is no mere nursery tale which will here be told, but a real case from life, which was observed with all the means possessed by the clairvoyant investigator and with all the care which it is incumbent upon him to exercise; nor is it related as a “proof,” but merely as an illustration.1It has been necessary to make this preamble, since the superstitious followers of materialism, as soon as they hear of any such story, immediately respond by declaring that these cases prove nothing They whittle away everything of the kind as the result of delusion and inaccurate observation. To them it should be remarked, by way of reply, that the clairvoyant investigator does not require such indirect proofs; he attains to a direct knowledge by means of the higher sight. Nevertheless, facts of the kind related above serve to illustrate what is meant. To establish their truth other means exist than those which materialistic learning will use in the unimpeachable exposition of a matter of ordinary fact.

A young man stood confronted by an examination which would probably decide his entire future life. For a long time previously, he had worked for it assiduously, and consequently, on the evening before the examination, was exceedingly tired. He was to appear before the examiners punctually at eight in the morning of the following day. He wanted to have a night's restful sleep before the trial, but he feared lest, on account of his exhaustion, he might not be able to wake himself at the right hour. He therefore took the precaution to arrange that a Person living in the next room should wake him at six o'clock by knocking at his door. Thus he was able to abandon himself to sleep with an easy mind. On the following day he awoke, not at the call of his neighbor, but out of a dream. He heard six sharp rifle-reports, and with the sixth he was awake. His watch—equipped with no alarm—stood at six o'clock. He dressed himself, and after half an hour his neighbor awoke him. In reality, it was only just then six o'clock, for his watch, by some accident, had gained half an hour in the night. The dream which awakened him had timed itself to the erroneous watch. What was it, then, which happened here? The soul of the young man had remained active even during his sleep. Because he had previously formed a connection between this activity of soul and the watch at his side, there had remained a connection between the two for the whole of the night, so that on the next day the soul came, as it were, to the hour of six simultaneously with the watch. This activity had impressed itself on the young man's consciousness through the pictorial dream already described, which had awakened him One cannot explain it away by reference to the increasing light of day or anything similar, for the soul acted not in accordance with the real time of day, but with the erroneous watch. The soul was active like a veritable watchman while the physical person slept. It is not the activity of the soul which is lacking in sleep, but rather a consciousness of that activity.

If, by occult training, the sleep-life of a person is cultivated, in the way already set forth in the previous chapter, he can then follow consciously everything which passes before him while in this particular state; he can voluntarily put himself en rapport with his environment, just as with his experiences, known through the physical senses, during the continuance of the waking consciousness. Had the young man in the above example been a clairvoyant, he would have been able to watch the time for himself during sleep, and in consequence to have awakened himself. It is necessary to state here that the perception of the ordinary phenomenal environment presupposes one of the higher stages of clairvoyance. At the beginning of his development at this stage, the student only perceives things which pertain to another world, without being able to discern their relation to the objects of his workaday surroundings.

[ 3 ] That which is illustrated in such typical examples of dream—or sleep—life is repeatedly experienced by people. The soul lives an unintermittently in the higher worlds and is active within them. Out of those higher worlds it continually draws the suggestions upon which it works when again in the physical body, while the ordinary man remains unconscious of this higher life. It is the work of the occult student to make it conscious, and by so doing his life becomes transformed. So long as the soul has not the higher sight, it is guided by foreign agencies, and just as the life of a blind man to whom sight is given by an operation becomes quite different from what it was before, so that he can henceforth dispense with a guide, thus also does the life of a person change im-der the influence of occult training. He, too, is now abandoned by his guide and must henceforward guide himself. As soon as this occurs he is, of course, liable to errors of which his waking consciousness had no conception. He now deals with a world in which, hitherto and unknown to himself, he had been influenced by higher powers. These higher powers are regulated by the great universal harmony. It is from this harmony that the student emerges. He has now to accomplish for himself things which were hitherto done for him without his co-operation.

[ 4 ] Because this is the case there will be much said in the treatises which deal with such things concerning the dangers which are connected with an ascent into the higher worlds. The descriptions of these dangers which have sometimes been given are very apt to make timid souls regard this higher life only with horror. It should here be said that these experiences only occur if the necessary rules of prudence are neglected. On the other hand, if everything which a genuine occult education imparts as counsel were here given as a warning, it would be manifest that the ascent is through experiences which in magnitude, as in form, surpass everything that has been painted by the boldest fancy of an ordinary person; yet it is not reasonable to talk of possible injury to health or life. The student learns to recognize horrible threatening forms that haunt every corner and cranny of life. It is even possible for him to make use of such powers and beings who are withdrawn from the perceptions of sense, and the temptation to use these powers in the service of some forbidden interest of his own is very great. There is also the possibility of employing these forces in erroneous ways, owing to an inadequate knowledge concerning the higher worlds. Some of these especially important events (as, for example, the meeting with “the Guardian of the Threshold”) will be described further on in this treatise. Yet one must realize that these hostile powers are around us even when we do not know anything about them. It is true that in this case their relation to man is determined by higher powers, and that this relationship only changes when he consciously enters the world which was hitherto unknown to him. At the same time, this will enhance his existence and enlarge the circle of his life to an enormous extent. There is danger only if the student, whether from impatience or arrogance, assumes too early an independence in his attitude toward the experiences of the higher world—if he cannot wait until he acquires a really mature insight into superphysical laws. In this sphere the words “humility” and “modesty” are still less empty than in ordinary life. If these, in the very best sense, are the attributes of the student, he may be sure that his ascent into the higher life may be achieved without any danger to what one usually means by health and life. Above all things it is needful that there should be no disharmony between these higher experiences and the events and demands of every-day life. The student's task throughout is to search on earth, and he who tries to withdraw from the sacred tasks of this earth and to escape into another world may be sure that he never reaches his goal. Yet what the senses behold is only a part of the world, and in spiritual regions lie the causes of what are facts in the phenomenal world. One should participate in the thins of the spirit in order to carry one's revelations into the world of the senses. Man transforms the earth, by implanting in it that which he has discovered in the spiritual world, and that is his task. Yet, because the earth is dependent upon the spiritual world—because we can only be truly effective on earth if we have part in those worlds wherein lie concealed the creative forces—we ought to be willing to ascend into those regions. If a person enters on a course of occult training with this sentiment, and if he never deviates for a moment from the directions already given, he has not even the most insignificant of dangers to fear. No one ought to hold back from occult education on account of the dangers that confront him; rather should the very prospect form a powerful inducement toward the acquisition of those qualities which must be possessed by the genuine occult student.

[ 5 ] After these preliminaries, which ought certainly to dispel all forebodings, let us now describe one of these “dangers.” It is true that very considerable changes are undergone by the finer bodies of the occult student. These changes are connected with certain evolutionary events which happen within the three fundamental forces of the soul—the will, the feelings, and the thoughts. As regards the occult training of a person these three forces stand in a definite relation, regulated by the laws of the higher world. He does not will, nor think, nor feel, in an arbitrary manner. If, for example, a particular idea arises in his mind, then, in accordance with natural laws, a certain feeling is attached to it, or else it is followed by a resolution of the will that is likewise connected with it according to law. You enter a room, find it to be stuffy, and open the window. You hear your name called, and follow the call. You are questioned and you answer. You perceive an ill-smelling object and you experience a feeling of disgust. These are simple connections between thought, feeling, and will. If, however, the student surveys human life, he will observe that everything in it is built up on such connections. Indeed, we only call the life of a person “normal” if we detect in it just that interrelation of thought, feeling, and will which is founded on the laws of human nature. We deem it contrary to these laws if a person, for instance, takes pleasure in an ill-smelling object, or if, on being questioned, he does not answer. The success which we expect from a right education or a fitting instruction consists in our presupposition that we can thereby impart to our pupil an interrelation of thought, feeling, and will that corresponds to human nature. When we present to a pupil any particular ideas, we do so on the supposition that they will assimilate, in an orderly association, with his feelings and volitions. All this arises from the fact that in the finer soul-vehicles of man the central points of the three powers, feeling, thinking, and willing, are connected with each other in a definite way. This connection in the finer soul-vehicles has also its analogy in the coarse physical body. There, too, the organs of volition stand in a certain orderly relation to those of thinking and feeling. A definite thought regularly evokes a feeling or a volition. In the course of a person's higher development the threads which connect these three principles with each other are severed. At first this rupture occurs only in regard to the finer organism of the soul; but at a still higher stage the separation extends also to the physical body. In the higher spiritual evolution of a person his brain actually divides into three separated parts. The separation, indeed, is of such a nature that it is not perceptible to ordinary sense-observation, nor could it be detected by the keenest physical instruments. Yet it occurs, and the clairvoyant has means of observing it. The brain of the higher clairvoyant divides into three independent active entities: the thought-brain, the feeling-brain, and the willing-brain.

[ 6 ] The organs of thinking, feeling, and willing remain, then, quite free in themselves, and their connection is no longer maintained by a law innate in them, but must now be tended by the growing higher consciousness of the individual. This, then, is the change which the occult student observes coming over himself—that there is no longer a connection between a thought and a feeling, or a feeling and a volition, except when he creates the connection himself. No impulse drives him from thought to action if he does not voluntarily harbor it. He can now stand completely without feeling before an object which, before his training, would have filled him with glowing love or violent hatred; he can likewise remain actionless before a thought which heretofore would have spurred him an to action as if by itself. He can execute deeds by an effort of will where not the remotest cause would be visible to a person who had not been through the occult school. The greatest acquisition which the occult student inherits is the attainment of complete lordship over the connecting threads of the three powers of the soul; yet simultaneously these connections are placed entirely at his own responsibility.

[ 7 ] Only through such alterations in his nature can a person come into conscious touch with certain superphysical powers and entities. For between his own soul and certain fundamental forces of the world there are correspondences or links. The power, for instance, which lies in the will can act upon, and perceive, particular things and entities of the higher world, but it can only do so when dissociated from the threads that link it with the feelings and thoughts of the soul. As soon as this separation is effected the activities of the will can be manifested, and so is it likewise with the forces of thought and feeling. If a person sends out a feeling of hatred, it is visible to the clairvoyant as a thin cloud of light of a special hue, and the clairvoyant can ward off such a feeling, just as an ordinary person wards off a physical blow that is aimed at him. Hate is a perceptible phenomenon in the superphysical world, but the clairvoyant is only able to perceive it in so far as he can send out the force which resides in his feelings, just as an ordinary person can direct outwards the receptive faculty of his eyes. What is here applied to hatred applies also to far more important facts in the phenomenal world. The individual can come into conscious communion with them by this very liberation of the elemental forces in the soul.

[ 8 ] On account of this division of the thinking, feeling, and willing forces it is now possible that a threefold error may overtake the development of a person who has been disregardful of his occult instructions. Such an error might occur if the connecting threads were severed before the student had acquired so much knowledge of the higher consciousness as would enable him to hold the reins by which to guide well, such as a free, harmonious co-operation of the separate forces would supply. For, as a rule, the three human principles at any given period of life are not symmetrically developed. In one the power of thought is advanced beyond those of feeling and will; in a second, another power has the upper hand over its companions. So long as the connection between these forces—a connection produced by the laws of the higher world—remains intact, no injurious irregularity, in the higher sense, can result from the predominance of one force or another. In a person of will-power, for instance, thought and feeling work by those laws to equalize all and to prevent the over-weighty will from falling into a kind of degeneration. If such a person, however, should take up an occult training, the law-given influence of thought and feeling upon the monstrous, unchecked, oppressive will would entirely cease. If, then, the individual has not carried his control of the higher consciousness so far that he can call up the desirable harmony for himself, the will continues an its own unbridled way and repeatedly overpowers its possessor. Thought and feeling lapse into complete debility; and the individual is whipped like a slave by his own overmastering will. A violent nature which rushes from one uncurbed action to another is the result.

A second deviation ensues if feeling shakes off its appropriate bridle in the same extreme manner. A person who bows in adoration before another may easily give himself over to an unlimited dependence, until his own thought and will are ruined. In place of the higher knowledge a pitiful vacuity and feebleness would become the lot of such a person. Again, in a case where feeling largely preponderates, a nature too much given over to piety and religious aspiration may lapse into religious extravagance that carries him away.

The third evil is found where thought is too prominent, for then there may result a contemplative nature inimical to life and shut within itself. To such persons the world only appears to have any significance so far as it offers them objects for the satisfaction of their limitless thirst for wisdom. They are never impelled by a thought either to a feeling or to a deed. They are seen at once to be cold, unfeeling folk. They fly away from every contact with the things of ordinary life as from something that stings them to aversion, or that at least has lost all meaning for them.

[ 9 ] These are the three ways of error against which the occult student should be counselled: over-action, excess of feeling, and a cold, unloving struggle after wisdom. Viewed from without—as also from the materialistic medical standpoint—the picture of an occult student upon one of these byways does not greatly differ (especially in degree) from that of a madman, or at least of a person suffering from severe nervous illness. From all this it will be clear how important it is to occult education that the three principles of the soul should throughout be symmetrically developed, before their innate connection is severed and the awakened higher consciousness enthroned in its place; for if a mistake once occurs, if one of these principles falls into lawlessness, the higher soul appears as a thing misborn. The unbridled force then pervades the individual's entire personality; and one cannot expect the balance to be restored for a long time. That which seems but a harmless characteristic so long as its possessor is without occult training,—especially if he belongs to the willing, thinking, or feeling type,—is so increased in the occult student that the more homely virtues, so necessary for everyday life, are apt to be obscured.

A really serious danger is at hand when the student has acquired the faculty of calling up before him in waking consciousness those things that he can experience in the state of sleep. As long as it is only a matter of illuminating the intervals of sleep, the sense-life, regulated according to common universal laws, always works during the waking hours towards restoring the disturbed equilibrium of the soul. That is why it is so essential that the waking life of an occult student should in every respect be healthy and systematic. The more he fulfils the demand which is made by the external world upon a sound and powerful type of body, soul, and spirit, the better it is for him. On the other hand, it may be very bad for him if his ordinary waking life acts so as to excite or irritate him; if any disturbing or hindering influence from the external life occurs during the great changes that are undergone by his inner nature. He should seek for everything which corresponds to his powers and faculties, everything that puts him in an undisturbed harmonious connection with his environment. He should avoid everything which upsets this harmony, everything that brings unrest and fever into his life. Regarding this, it is not so much a matter of removing this unrest or fever in an external sense, as of taking care that the moods, purposes, thoughts, and bodily health do not thereby undergo a continual fluctuation. During his occult training all this is not so easy for a person to accomplish as it was before, since the higher experiences, which are now interwoven with his life, react uninterruptedly upon his entire existence. If something in these higher experiences is not in its place, the irregularity lurks perpetually and is liable to throw him off the right path at every turn. For this reason the student should omit nothing which will secure for him a lasting control over his entire nature, nor should presence of mind, and a peaceful survey of all possible situations in life ever be allowed to desert him. A genuine occult training, indeed, itself engenders all these attributes, and in the course of such training one only learns to know these dangers at the precise moment when one acquires the full power to rout them from the field.

Die Spaltung der Persönlichkeit während der Einweihung

[ 1 ] Während des Schlafes empfängt die menschliche Seele nicht die Mitteilungen von seiten der physischen Sinneswerkzeuge. Die Wahrnehmungen der gewöhnlichen Außenwelt fließen ihr in diesem Zustande nicht zu. Sie ist in Wahrheit in gewisser Beziehung außerhalb des Teiles der menschlichen Wesenheit, des sogenannten physischen Leibes, welcher im Wachen die Sinneswahrnehmungen und das Denken vermittelt. Sie ist dann nur in Verbindung mit den feineren Leibern (dem Ätherleib und dem Astralleib), welche sich der Beobachtung der physischen Sinne entziehen. Aber die Tätigkeit dieser feineren Leiber hört im Schlafe nicht etwa auf. So wie der physische Leib mit den Dingen und Wesen der physischen Welt in Verbindung steht, wie er von ihnen Wirkungen empfängt und auf sie wirkt, so lebt die Seele in einer höheren Welt. Und dieses Leben dauert während des Schlafes fort. Tatsächlich ist die Seele während des Schlafes in voller Regsamkeit. Nur kann der Mensch von dieser seiner eigenen Tätigkeit so lange nichts wissen, als er nicht geistige Wahmehmungsorgane hat, durch welche er während des Schlafes ebensogut beobachten kann, was um ihn herum vorgeht und was er selber treibt, wie er das mit seinen gewöhnlichen Sinnen im Tagesleben für seine physische Umgebung kann. Die Geheimschulung besteht (wie in den vorhergehenden Kapiteln gezeigt worden ist) in der Ausbildung solcher geistigen Sinneswerkzeuge.

[ 2 ] Verwandelt sich nun durch die Geheimschulung das Schlafleben des Menschen in dem Sinne, wie es im vorigen Kapitel beschrieben worden ist, so kann er alles, was in diesem Zustande um ihn herum vorgeht, bewußt verfolgen; er kann sich willkürlich in seiner Umgebung zurechtfinden, wie das mit seinen Erlebnissen während des wachen Alltagslebens durch die gewöhnlichen Sinne der Fall ist. Dabei ist allerdings zu beachten, daß die Wahrnehmung der gewöhnlichen sinnlichen Umgebung schon einen höheren Grad des Hellsehens voraussetzt. (Es ist darauf schon im vorigen Kapitel hingedeutet worden.) Im Beginn der Entwickelung nimmt der Geheimschüler nur Dinge wahr, die einer anderen Welt angehören, ohne deren Zusammenhang mit den Gegenständen seiner alltäglichen sinnlichen Umgebung bemerken zu können.

[ 3 ] Was an so charakteristischen Beispielen des Traum- und Schlaflebens anschaulich wird, findet fortwährend beim Menschen statt. Die Seele lebt ohne Unterbrechung in höheren Welten und ist innerhalb der letzteren tätig. Sie schöpft aus diesen höheren Welten heraus die Anregungen, durch welche sie immerwährend auf den physischen Leib wirkt. Nur bleibt für den Menschen dieses sein höheres Leben unbewußt. Der Geheimschüler aber bringt es zum Bewußtsein. Dadurch wird sein Leben überhaupt ein anderes. Solange die Seele nicht im höheren Sinne sehend ist, wird sie von übergeordneten Weltwesen geführt. Und wie das Leben eines Blinden, der durch Operation sehend geworden ist, ein anderes wird, als es vorher war, da er sich auf seine Führerschaft verlassen mußte, so ändert sich das Leben des Menschen durch die Geheimschulung. Er wird der Führerschaft entwachsen und muß fortan seine Leitung selbst übernehmen. Sobald dies eintritt, ist er, wie begreiflich, Irrtümern unterworfen, von denen das gewöhnliche Bewußtsein nichts ahnt. Er handelt jetzt aus einer Welt heraus, aus der ihn früher höhere Gewalten, ihm selbst unbewußt, beeinflußten. Diese höheren Gewalten sind durch die allgemeine Weltharmonie geordnet. Aus dieser Weltharmonie tritt der Geheimschüler heraus. Er hat nunmehr selbst Dinge zu tun, die vorher für ihn ohne sein Zutun vollzogen worden sind.

[ 4 ] Weil dies letztere der Fall ist, deshalb wird in den Schriften, die von solchen Dingen handeln, viel von den Gefahren gesprochen, welche mit dem Aufstieg in die höheren Welten verbunden sind. Die Schilderungen, die da zuweilen von solchen Gefahren gemacht werden, sind wohl geeignet, ängstliche Gemüter nur mit Schaudern auf dieses höhere Leben blicken zu lassen. Doch muß gesagt werden, daß diese Gefahren nur dann vorhanden sind, wenn die notwendigen Vorsichtsmaßregeln außer acht gelassen werden. Wenn dagegen wirklich alles beachtet wird, was wahre Geheimschulung als Ratschläge an die Hand gibt, dann erfolgt der Aufstieg zwar durch Erlebnisse hindurch, die an Gewalt und Größe alles überragen, was die kühnste Phantasie des Sinnesmenschen sich ausmalen kann; aber von einer Beeinträchtigung der Gesundheit oder des Lebens kann nicht die Rede sein. Der Mensch lernt grausige, das Leben an allen Ecken und Enden bedrohende Gewalten kennen. Es wird ihm möglich, sich selbst gewisser Kräfte und Wesen zu bedienen, welche der sinnlichen Wahrnehmung entzogen sind. Und die Versuchung ist groß, sich dieser Kräfte im Dienste eines eigenen unerlaubten Interesses zu bemächtigen oder aus mangelnder Erkenntnis der höheren Welten in irrtümlicher Weise solche Kräfte zu verwenden. Einige von solchen besonders bedeutsamen Erlebnissen (zum Beispiel die Begegnung mit dem «Hüter der Schwelle») sollen noch in diesen Aufsätzen geschildert werden. – Aber man muß doch bedenken, daß die leben-feindlichen Mächte auch dann vorhanden sind, wenn man sie nicht kennt. Wahr ist allerdings, daß dann deren Verhältnis zum Menschen von höheren Kräften bestimmt wird und daß dieses Verhältnis sich auch ändert, wenn der Mensch mit Bewußtsein in diese ihm vorher verborgene Welt eintritt. Aber es wird dafür auch sein eigenes Dasein gesteigert, sein Lebenskreis um ein ungeheures Feld bereichert. Eine wirkliche Gefahr liegt nur dann vor, wenn der Geheimschüler durch Ungeduld oder Unbescheidenheit sich gegenüber den Erfahrungen der höheren Welt zu früh eine gewisse Selbständigkeit beimißt, wenn er nicht abwarten kann, bis ihm die zureichende Einsicht in die übersinnlichen Gesetze wirklich zuteil wird. Auf diesem Gebiete sind eben Demut und Bescheidenheit noch viel weniger leere Worte als im gewöhnlichen Leben. Sind diese aber dem Schüler im allerbesten Sinne eigen, so kann er sicher sein, daß sich sein Aufstieg ins höhere Leben gefahrlos für alles das vollzieht, was man gewöhnlich Gesundheit und Leben nennt. – Vor allen Dingen darf keine Disharmonie aufkommen zwischen den höheren Erlebnissen und den Vorgängen und Anforderungen des alltäglichen Lebens. Des Menschen Aufgabe ist durchaus auf dieser Erde zu suchen. Und wer den Aufgaben auf dieser Erde sich entziehen und in eine andere Welt flüchten will, der mag sicher sein, daß er sein Ziel nicht erreicht. – Aber was die Sinne wahrnehmen, ist nur ein Teil der Welt. Und im Geistigen liegen die Wesenheiten, welche sich in den Tatsachen der sinnlichen Welt ausdrücken. Man soll teilhaftig werden des Geistes, damit man seine Offenbarungen in die Sinneswelt hineintragen kann. Der Mensch gestaltet die Erde um, indem er ihr einpflanzt, was er von dem Geisterlande her erkundet. Darinnen liegt seine Aufgabe. Nur weil die sinnliche Erde von der geistigen Welt abhängt, weil man wahrhaftig auf der Erde nur wirken kann, wenn man Teilhaber an jenen Welten ist, in denen die schaffenden Kräfte verborgen sind, deshalb soll man zu diesen letzteren aufsteigen wollen. Tritt man mit dieser Gesinnung an die Geheimschulung heran und weicht man keinen Augenblick von der dadurch vorgezeichneten Richtung ab, dann hat man nicht die allergeringsten Gefahren zu befürchten. Niemand sollte sich von den in Aussicht stehenden Gefahren von der Geheimschulung abhalten lassen; für einen jeden aber sollte diese Aussicht eine strenge Aufforderung sein, sich durchaus jene Eigenschaften anzueignen, welche der wahre Geheimschü1er haben soll.

[ 5 ] Nach diesen Voraussetzungen, die wohl alles Schreckhafte beseitigen, soll nun hier an die Schilderung einiger sogenannter «Gefahren» geschritten werden. Große Veränderungen gehen allerdings mit den obengenannten feineren Leibern beim Geheimschüler vor sich. Solche Veränderungen hängen mit gewissen Entwickelungsvorgängen der drei Grundkräfte der Seele, mit Wollen, Fühlen und Denken zusammen. Diese drei Kräfte stehen vor der Geheimschulung des Menschen in einer ganz bestimmten, durch höhere Weltgesetze geregelten Verbindung. Nicht in beliebiger Weise will, fühlt oder denkt der Mensch. Wenn zum Beispiel eine bestimmte Vorstellung im Bewußtsein auftaucht, so schließt sich an sie nach natürlichen Gesetzen ein gewisses Gefühl oder es folgt auf sie ein gesetzmäßig mit ihr zusammenhängender Willensentschluß. Man betritt ein Zimmer, findet es dumpfig und öffnet die Fenster. Man hört seinen Namen rufen und folgt dem Rufe. Man wird gefragt und gibt Antwort. Man sieht ein übelriechendes Ding und bekommt ein Gefühl von Unlust. Das sind einfache Zusammenhänge zwischen Denken, Fühlen und Wollen. Wenn man aber das menschliche Leben überschaut, so wird man finden, daß sich alles in diesem Leben auf solche Zusammenhänge aufbaut. Ja, man bezeichnet das Leben eines Menschen nur dann als ein «normales», wenn man in demselben eine solche Verbindung von Denken, Fühlen und Wollen bemerkt, die in den Gesetzen der menschlichen Natur begründet liegt. Man fände es diesen Gesetzen widersprechend, wenn ein Mensch zum Beispiel beim Anblick eines übelriechenden Gegenstandes ein Lustgefühl empfände oder wenn er auf Fragen nicht antwortete. Die Erfolge, die man sich von einer richtigen Erziehung oder einem angemessenen Unterricht verspricht, beruhen darauf, daß man voraussetzt, man könne eine der menschlichen Natur entsprechende Verbindung zwischen Denken, Fühlen und Wollen beim Zögling herstellen. Wenn man diesem gewisse Vorstellungen beibringt, so tut man es in der Annahme, daß sie später mit seinen Gefühlen und Willensentschlüssen in gesetzmäßige Verbindungen eingehen. – Alles das rührt davon her, daß in den feineren Seelenleibern des Menschen die Mittelpunkte der drei Kräfte, des Denkens, Fühlens und Wollens, in einer gesetzmäßigen Art miteinander verbunden sind. Und diese Verbindung in dem feineren Seelenorganismus hat auch ihr Abbild in dem groben physischen Körper. Auch in diesem stehen die Organe des Wollens in einer gewissen gesetzmäßigen Verbindung mit denen des Denkens und Fühlens. Ein bestimmter Gedanke ruft regelmäßig daher ein Gefühl oder eine Willenstätigkeit hervor. – Bei der höheren Entwickelung des Menschen werden nun die Fäden, welche die drei Grundkräfte miteinander verbind~n, unterbrochen. Zuerst geschieht diese Unterbrechung nur in dem charakterisierten feineren Seelenorganismus; bei noch höherem Aufstieg aber erstreckt sich die Trennung auch auf den physischen Körper. (Es zerfällt bei der höheren geistigen Entwickelung des Menschen tatsächlich zum Beispiel sein Gehirn in drei voneinander getrennte Glieder. Die Trennung ist allerdings eine solche, daß sie für die gewöhnliche sinnliche Anschauung nicht wahrnehmbar und auch durch die schärfsten sinnlichen Instrumente nicht nachweisbar ist. Aber sie tritt ein, und der Hellseher hat Mittel, sie zu beobachten. Das Gehirn des höheren Hellsehers zerfällt in drei selbständig wirkende Wesenheiten: das Denk-, Fühl- und Willensgehirn.)

[ 6 ] Die Organe des Denkens, Fühlens und Wollens stehen sodann ganz frei für sich da. Und ihre Verbindung wird nunmehr durch keine ihnen selbst eingepflanzten Gesetze hergestellt, sondern muß durch das erwachte höhere Bewußtsein des Menschen selbst besorgt werden. – Das ist nämlich die Veränderung, welche der Geheimschüler an sich bemerkt, daß kein Zusammenhang zwischen einer Vorstellung und einem Gefühl oder einem Gefühl und einem Willensentschluß und so weiter sich einstellt, wenn er nicht selbst einen solchen schafft. Kein Antrieb führt ihn von einem Gedanken zu einer Handlung, wenn er diesen Antrieb nicht frei in sich bewirkt. Er kann nunmehr völlig gefühllos vor einer Tatsache stehen, die ihm vor seiner Schulung glühende Liebe oder ärgsten Haß eingeflößt hat; er kann untätig bleiben bei einem Gedanken, der ihn vorher zu einer Handlung wie von selbst begeistert hat. Und er kann Taten verrichten aus Willensentschlüssen heraus, für welche bei einem nicht durch die Geheimschulung hindurchgegangenen Menschen auch nicht die geringste Veranlassung vorliegt. Die große Errungenschaft, welche dem Geheimschüler zuteil wird, ist, daß er die vollkommene Herrschaft erlangt über das Zusammenwirken der drei Seelenkräfte; aber dieses Zusammenwirken wird dafür auch vollständig in seine eigene Verantwortlichkeit gestellt.

[ 7 ] Erst durch diese Umwandlung seines Wesens kann der Mensch in bewußte Verbindung treten mit gewissen übersinnlichen Kräften und Wesenheiten. Denn es haben seine eigenen Seelenkräfte zu gewissen Grundkräften der Welt entsprechende Verwandtschaft. Die Kraft zum Beispiel, die im Willen liegt, kann auf bestimmte Dinge und Wesenheiten der höheren Welt wirken und diese auch wahrnehmen. Aber sie kann das erst dann, wenn sie frei geworden ist von ihrer Verbindung mit dem Fühlen und Denken innerhalb der Seele. Sobald diese Verbindung gelöst ist, tritt die Wirkung des Willens nach außen hervor. Und so ist es auch mit den Kräften des Denkens und Fühlens. Wenn mir ein Mensch ein Haßgefühl zusendet, so ist dieses für den Hellseher sichtbar als eine feine Lichtwolke von bestimmter Färbung. Und ein solcher Hellseher kann dieses Haßgefühl abwehren, wie der Sinnesmensch einen physischen Schlag abwehrt, der gegen ihn geführt wird. Der Haß wird in der übersinnlichen Welt eine anschaubare Erscheinung. Aber nur dadurch kann ihn der Hellseher wahrnehmen, daß er die Kraft, die in seinem Gefühle liegt, nach außen zu senden vermag, wie der Sinnesmensch die Empfänglichkeit seines Auges nach außen richtet. Und so wie mit dem Haß ist es mit weit bedeutungsvolleren Tatsachen der sinnlichen Welt. Der Mensch kann mit ihnen in bewußten Verkehr treten durch die Freilegung der Grundkräfte seiner Seele.

[ 8 ] Durch die geschilderte Trennung der Kräfte des Denkens, Fühlens und Wollens ist nun, bei Außerachtlassung der geheimwissenschaftlichen Vorschriften, eine dreifache Verirrung auf dem Entwickelungsgange des Menschen möglich. Eine solche kann eintreten, wenn die Verbindungsbahnen zerstört werden, bevor das höhere Bewußtsein mit seiner Erkenntnis so weit ist, daß es die Zügel, die ein freies harmonisches Zusammenwirken der getrennten Kräfte herstellen, ordentlich zu führen vermag. – Denn in der Regel sind nicht alle drei Grundkräfte des Menschen in einem bestimmten Lebensabschnitt gleich weit in ihrer Entwickelung vorgeschritten. Bei dem einen Menschen ist das Denken dem Fühlen und Wollen vorangeschritten, bei einem zweiten hat eine andere Kraft die Oberhand über ihre Genossen. Solange nun der durch die höheren Weltgesetze hergestellte Zusammenhang der Kräfte aufrechterhalten bleibt, kann durch das Hervorstechen der einen oder der anderen keine im höheren Sinne störende Unregelmäßigkeit eintreten. Beim Willensmenschen zum Beispiel wirken Denken und Gefühl durch jene Gesetze doch ausgleichend, und sie verhindern, daß der überwiegende Wille in besondere Ausartungen verfällt. Tritt ein solcher Willensmensch aber in die Geheimschulung ein, so hört der gesetzmäßige Einfluß von Gefühl und Gedanke auf den zu ungeheuren Kraftleistungen unausgesetzt drängenden Willen vollständig auf. Ist dann der Mensch in der vollkommenen Beherrschung des höheren Bewußtseins nicht so weit, daß er selbst die Harmonie hervorrufen kann, so geht der Wille seine eigenen zügellosen Wege. Er überwältigt fortwährend seinen Träger. Gefühl und Denken fallen einer vollkommenen Machtlosigkeit anheim; der Mensch wird durch die ihn sklavisch beherrschende Willensmacht gepeitscht. Eine Gewaltnatur, die von einer zugellosen Handlung zur anderen schreitet, ist entstanden. – Ein zweiter Abweg entsteht, wenn das Gefühl in einer maßlosen Art sich von den gesetzmäßigen Zügeln befreit. Eine zur Verehrung anderer Menschen neigende Person kann sich dann in grenzenlose Abhängigkeit bis zum Verluste jedes eigenen Willens und Gedankens begeben. Statt höherer Erkenntnis ist dann die erbarmungswürdigste Aushöhlung und Kraftlosigkeit das Los einer solchen Persönlichkeit. – Oder es kann bei solch überwiegendem Gefühlsleben eine zu Frömmigkeit und religiöser Erhebung neigende Natur in eine sie ganz hinreißende Religionsschwelgerei verfallen. – Das dritte Übel bildet sich, wenn das Denken überwiegt. Dann tritt eine lebensfeindliche, in sich verschlossene Beschaulichkeit auf. Für solche Menschen scheint dann die Welt nur mehr insoweit Bedeutung zu haben, als sie ihnen Gegenstände liefert zur Befriedigung ihrer ins Grenzenlose gesteigerten Weisheitsgier. Sie werden durch keinen Gedanken zu einer Handlung oder einem Gefühl angeregt. Sie treten überall als teilnahmslose, kalte Naturen auf. Jede Berührung mit Dingen der alltäglichen Wirklichkeit fliehen sie wie etwas, das ihnen Ekel erregt oder das wenigstens für sie alle Bedeutung verloren hat.

[ 9 ] Das sind die drei Irrpfade, auf welche der Geheimschüler geraten kann: das Gewaltmenschentum, die Gefühlsschwelgerei, das kalte lieblose Weisheitsstreben. Für eine äußerliche Betrachtungsweise – auch für die materialistische der Schulmedizin – unterscheidet sich das Bild eines solchen auf Abwegen befindlichen Menschen, vor allen Dingen dem Grade nach, nicht viel von demjenigen eines Irrsinnigen oder wenigstens einer schwer «nervenkranken Person». Ihnen darf natürlich der Geheimschüler nicht gleichen. Es kommt bei ihm darauf an, daß Denken, Fühlen, Wollen, die drei Grundkräfte der Seele, eine harmonische Entwickelung durchgemacht haben, bevor sie aus der ihnen eingepflanzten Verbindung gelöst und dem erwachten höheren Bewußtsein unterstellt werden können. – Denn ist einmal der Fehler geschehen, ist eine Grundkraft der Zügellosigkeit anheimgefallen, so tritt die höhere Seele zunächst als eine Fehlgeburt zutage. Die ungebändigte Kraft füllt dann die ganze Persönlichkeit des Menschen aus; und für lange ist nicht daran zu denken, daß alles wieder ins Gleichgewicht kommt. Was als eine harmlose Charakterveranlagung erscheint, solange der Mensch ohne Geheimschulung ist, nämlich ob er eine Willens-, Gefühls- oder Denkernatur ist, das steigert sich beim Geheimschüler so, daß sich das zum Leben notwendige Allgemeinmenschliche demgegenüber ganz verliert. – Zu einer wirklich ernsten Gefahr wird das allerdings erst in dem Augenblicke, in welchem der Schüler die Fähigkeit erlangt, Erlebnisse wie im Schlafbewußtsein so auch im wachen Zustande vor sich zu haben. Solange es bei der bloßen Erhellung der Schlafpausen verbleibt, wirkt während des Wachzustandes das von den allgemeinen Weltgesetzen geregelte Sinnesleben immer wieder ausgleichend auf das gestörte Gleichgewicht der Seele zurück. Deshalb ist es so notwendig, daß das Wachleben des Geheimschülers in jeder Richtung ein regelmäßiges, gesundes sei. Je mehr er den Anforderungen entspricht, welche die äußere Welt an eine gesunde, kräftige Gestaltung von Leib, Seele und Geist stellt, desto besser ist es für ihn. Schlimm dagegen kann es für ihn werden, wenn das alltägliche Wachleben aufregend oder aufreibend auf ihn wirkt, wenn also zu den größeren Veränderungen, die in seinem Inneren vorgehen, irgendwelche zerstörende oder hemmende Einflüsse des äußeren Lebens hinzutreten. Er soll alles aufsuchen, was seinen Kräften entsprechend ist und was ihn in ein ungestörtes, harmonisches Zusammenleben mit seiner Umgebung hineinbringt. Und er soll alles vermeiden, was dieser Harmonie Eintrag tut, was Unruhe und Hast in sein Leben bringt. Dabei kommt es weniger darauf an, diese Unruhe und Hast sich in einem äußerlichen Sinne abzuwälzen, als vielmehr darauf, zu sorgen, daß die Stimmung, die Absichten und Gedanken und die Gesundheit des Leibes darunter nicht fortwährenden Schwankungen ausgesetzt werden. – All das fällt dem Menschen während seiner Geheimschulung nicht so leicht wie vorher. Denn die höheren ErJehnisse, die nunmehr in sein Leben hineinspielen, wirken ununterbrochen auf sein ganzes Dasein. Ist innerhalb dieser höheren Erlebnisse etwas nicht in Ordnung, so lauert die Unregelmäßigkeit unausgesetzt und kann ihn bei jeder Gelegenheit aus den geordneten Bahnen herauswerfen. Deshalb darf der Geheimschüler nichts unterlassen, was ihm stets die Herrschaft über sein ganzes Wesen sichert. Nie sollte ihm Geistesgegenwart oder ein ruhiges Überblicken aller in Betracht kommenden Situationen des Lebens mangeln. Aber eine echte Geheimschulung erzeugt im Grunde alle diese Eigenschaften durch sich selbst. Und man lernt während einer solchen die Gefahren nur kennen, indem man zugleich in den richtigen Augenblicken die volle Macht erlangt, sie aus dem Felde zu schlagen.

The splitting of the personality during initiation

[ 1 ] During sleep, the human soul does not receive messages from the physical sensory organs. The perceptions of the ordinary external world do not flow to it in this state. It is in truth in a certain respect outside the part of the human being, the so-called physical body, which mediates the sensory perceptions and the thinking when awake. It is then only in connection with the finer bodies (the etheric body and the astral body), which are beyond the observation of the physical senses. But the activity of these finer bodies does not cease in sleep. Just as the physical body is in contact with the things and beings of the physical world, just as it receives effects from them and acts upon them, so the soul lives in a higher world. And this life continues during sleep. In fact, the soul is in full activity during sleep. But man can know nothing of his own activity as long as he has no spiritual organs of perception, through which he can observe during sleep what is going on around him and what he himself is doing, just as well as he can observe his physical surroundings with his ordinary senses during the day. The secret training consists (as has been shown in the previous chapters) in the training of such spiritual sensory tools.

[ 2 ] If a person's sleep life is transformed through secret training in the sense described in the previous chapter, he can consciously follow everything that goes on around him in this state; he can find his way around his surroundings at will, as is the case with his experiences during waking everyday life through the ordinary senses. It should be noted, however, that the perception of the ordinary sensory environment already presupposes a higher degree of clairvoyance. (This has already been indicated in the previous chapter.) At the beginning of development, the secret disciple only perceives things that belong to another world, without being able to notice their connection with the objects of his everyday sensory environment.

[ 3 ] What is illustrated by such characteristic examples of dream and sleep life takes place continuously in human beings. The soul lives without interruption in higher worlds and is active within the latter. From these higher worlds it draws the stimuli through which it continually influences the physical body. But for the human being this higher life remains unconscious. The secret disciple, however, brings it to consciousness. Thus his life becomes a different one altogether. As long as the soul is not seeing in the higher sense, it is guided by superior world beings. And just as the life of a blind person who has become sighted through an operation becomes different from what it was before, since he had to rely on his guide, so the life of the human being changes through the secret training. He will outgrow his leadership and must henceforth assume his leadership himself. As soon as this occurs, he is, understandably, subject to errors of which the ordinary consciousness is unaware. He now acts out of a world from which he was previously influenced by higher powers of which he himself was unaware. These higher powers are ordered by the general harmony of the world. The secret disciple steps out of this world harmony. He now has to do things himself that were previously carried out for him without his involvement.

[ 4 ] Because the latter is the case, much is said in the writings that deal with such things about the dangers connected with the ascent to the higher worlds. The descriptions that are sometimes given of such dangers are well suited to make fearful minds look at this higher life only with trepidation. But it must be said that these dangers only exist if the necessary precautions are disregarded. If, on the other hand, everything that true secret training gives as advice is really observed, then the ascent takes place through experiences that surpass in violence and greatness everything that the boldest fantasy of the sensual man can imagine; but there can be no question of any impairment of health or life. Man becomes acquainted with gruesome forces that threaten life at every turn. It becomes possible for him to make use of certain powers and beings that are beyond sensory perception. And the temptation is great to seize these powers in the service of one's own illicit interest or to use such powers erroneously out of a lack of knowledge of the higher worlds. Some of such particularly significant experiences (for example the encounter with the "Guardian of the Threshold") will be described in these essays. - But it must be remembered that the powers hostile to life are present even when they are not known. It is true, however, that their relationship to man is then determined by higher forces and that this relationship also changes when man enters this previously hidden world with consciousness. But in return his own existence is enhanced, his circle of life is enriched by an enormous field. There is only a real danger if the secret disciple, through impatience or immodesty, assumes a certain independence too soon in relation to the experiences of the higher world, if he cannot wait until he really gains sufficient insight into the supersensible laws. In this field, humility and modesty are even less empty words than in ordinary life. But if the disciple possesses these in the very best sense, he can be sure that his ascent into the higher life will take place without danger to anything that is usually called health and life. - Above all, there must be no disharmony between the higher experiences and the processes and demands of everyday life. Man's task is definitely to be sought on this earth. And he who wants to evade the tasks on this earth and flee to another world may be sure that he will not reach his goal. - But what the senses perceive is only a part of the world. And in the spiritual lie the entities which express themselves in the facts of the sensual world. One should become a partaker of the spirit so that one can carry its revelations into the sensory world. Man transforms the earth by implanting into it what he explores from the spirit world. Therein lies his task. Only because the sensual earth depends on the spiritual world, because one can only truly work on earth if one is a participant in those worlds in which the creative forces are hidden, should one want to ascend to the latter. If one approaches the secret training with this attitude and does not deviate for a moment from the direction thus indicated, then one does not have to fear the slightest danger. No one should allow the dangers in prospect to deter them from secret training; for everyone, however, this prospect should be a stern challenge to acquire the qualities that the true secret student should have.

[ 5 ] After these prerequisites, which probably eliminate all frightfulness, we will now proceed to the description of some so-called "dangers". However, great changes take place with the above-mentioned finer bodies in the secret disciple. Such changes are connected with certain developmental processes of the three basic forces of the soul, with will, feeling and thinking. Before the secret training of the human being, these three forces are connected in a very specific way, regulated by higher world laws. Man does not arbitrarily will, feel or think. When, for example, a certain idea appears in consciousness, it is followed by a certain feeling according to natural laws or it is followed by a decision of will that is lawfully connected with it. You enter a room, find it dull and open the windows. You hear your name called and answer the call. You are asked a question and give an answer. You see a foul-smelling thing and get a feeling of displeasure. These are simple connections between thinking, feeling and willing. But if you look at human life, you will find that everything in this life is based on such connections. Indeed, a person's life can only be described as "normal" if one notices in it such a connection between thinking, feeling and willing, which is based on the laws of human nature. One would find it contrary to these laws if, for example, a person felt pleasure at the sight of a foul-smelling object or if he did not answer questions. The success that one expects from a correct education or appropriate teaching is based on the assumption that one can establish a connection between thinking, feeling and willing in the pupil that corresponds to human nature. If certain ideas are taught, it is on the assumption that they will later enter into lawful connections with his feelings and volitional decisions. - All this stems from the fact that in the finer soul-bodies of man the centers of the three powers, thinking, feeling and willing, are connected with each other in a lawful way. And this connection in the finer soul organism also has its image in the gross physical body. In this, too, the organs of volition are in a certain lawful connection with those of thinking and feeling. A certain thought therefore regularly evokes a feeling or an activity of the will. - In the higher development of the human being, the threads that connect the three basic forces are now interrupted. At first this interruption occurs only in the finer soul organism as characterized; but with still higher ascent the separation also extends to the physical body. (In the higher spiritual development of man, for example, his brain actually breaks down into three separate parts. The separation, however, is such that it is not perceptible to ordinary sensory perception and cannot be detected even by the sharpest sensory instruments. But it occurs, and the clairvoyant has means to observe it. The brain of the higher clairvoyant is divided into three independently acting entities: the thinking, feeling and volitional brain).

[ 6 ] The organs of thought, feeling and will are then completely independent. And their connection is now not established by any laws implanted in them, but must be effected by the awakened higher consciousness of man himself. - For this is the change which the secret disciple notices in himself, that no connection arises between an idea and a feeling or a feeling and a decision of the will and so on, unless he himself creates one. No impulse leads him from a thought to an action if he does not bring about this impulse freely within himself. He can now stand completely unfeeling before a fact which, before his training, inspired him with ardent love or the fiercest hatred; he can remain inactive with a thought which previously inspired him to an action as if of its own accord. And he can carry out deeds out of volitional decisions for which a person who has not undergone secret training has not the slightest reason. The great achievement of the secret disciple is that he attains complete mastery over the interaction of the three soul forces; but this interaction is also placed entirely under his own responsibility.

[ 7 ] It is only through this transformation of his being that man can enter into conscious contact with certain supersensible forces and entities. For his own soul forces have a corresponding relationship to certain basic forces of the world. The power, for example, which lies in the will, can have an effect on certain things and beings of the higher world and also perceive them. But it can only do this when it has become free of its connection with the feeling and thinking within the soul. As soon as this connection is severed, the effect of the will emerges outwards. And so it is with the forces of thinking and feeling. If a person sends me a feeling of hatred, this is visible to the clairvoyant as a fine cloud of light of a certain color. And such a clairvoyant can ward off this feeling of hatred in the same way that a sensory person wards off a physical blow that is struck against him. Hatred becomes a visible phenomenon in the supersensible world. But the clairvoyant can only perceive it by being able to send the power that lies in his feelings outwards, just as the sensory man directs the receptivity of his eye outwards. And as with hatred, so it is with far more significant facts of the sensual world. Man can enter into conscious contact with them by uncovering the basic forces of his soul.

[ 8 ] Through the described separation of the powers of thinking, feeling and willing, a threefold aberration is now possible in the course of man's development, if the secret scientific rules are disregarded. Such an aberration can occur if the connecting paths are destroyed before the higher consciousness has reached the stage of cognition where it is able to properly guide the reins that establish a free and harmonious interaction of the separate forces. - For, as a rule, not all three basic forces of man are equally advanced in their development at a given stage of life. In one person thinking has progressed ahead of feeling and volition, in another another another force has the upper hand over its comrades. As long as the connection between the forces established by the higher laws of the world is maintained, no disturbing irregularity in the higher sense can occur through the prominence of one or the other. In the man of will, for example, thinking and feeling have a balancing effect through those laws, and they prevent the predominant will from falling into particular degenerations. But when such a man of will enters into the secret training, the lawful influence of feeling and thought on the will, which constantly urges to tremendous feats of strength, ceases completely. If the human being is then not so far advanced in the perfect mastery of the higher consciousness that he can bring about harmony himself, the will goes its own unbridled ways. It continually overpowers its bearer. Feeling and thinking fall prey to complete powerlessness; man is whipped by the slavishly dominating power of will. A nature of violence, which moves from one unrestrained action to another, has arisen. - A second deviation arises when the feeling frees itself from the lawful reins in an immoderate manner. A person inclined to worship other people can then become boundlessly dependent to the point of losing all will and thought. Instead of higher knowledge, the most pitiful hollowing out and powerlessness is then the lot of such a personality. - Or, with such a predominant emotional life, a nature inclined to piety and religious exaltation can fall into a religious indulgence that completely enraptures it. - The third evil arises when thinking predominates. Then a life-hostile, introverted contemplation appears. For such people, the world then only seems to have meaning insofar as it provides them with objects to satisfy their boundless lust for wisdom. They are not stimulated to any action or feeling by any thought. They appear everywhere as impassive, cold natures. They flee any contact with things of everyday reality like something that disgusts them or that has at least lost all meaning for them.

[ 9 ] These are the three wrong paths that the secret disciple can fall into: violent humanity, emotional indulgence and the cold, loveless pursuit of wisdom. From an external point of view - even from the materialistic point of view of orthodox medicine - the image of such a person who has gone astray does not differ much, especially in degree, from that of an insane person or at least a seriously "mentally ill person". Of course, the secret disciple must not resemble them. The important thing with him is that thinking, feeling and volition, the three fundamental powers of the soul, have undergone a harmonious development before they can be released from their implanted connection and placed under the control of the awakened higher consciousness. - For once the mistake has been made, once a basic force has fallen prey to unrestraint, the higher soul initially emerges as a miscarriage. The unrestrained power then fills the whole personality of the person; and for a long time there is no thought of everything coming back into balance. What appears to be a harmless character disposition as long as the person is without secret training, namely whether he is a will, feeling or thinking nature, increases in the secret student in such a way that the general humanity necessary for life is completely lost in comparison. - However, this only becomes a really serious danger at the moment when the pupil acquires the ability to have experiences before him in a waking state as well as in a sleeping consciousness. As long as it remains with the mere illumination of the sleep pauses, the sensory life, regulated by the general laws of the world, always has a balancing effect on the disturbed equilibrium of the soul during the waking state. This is why it is so necessary that the waking life of the secret disciple should be regular and healthy in every respect. The more he meets the demands which the outer world makes on a healthy, vigorous organization of body, soul and spirit, the better it is for him. On the other hand, it can be bad for him if everyday waking life has an exciting or exhausting effect on him, i.e. if any destructive or inhibiting influences of external life are added to the major changes taking place within him. He should seek out everything that corresponds to his powers and that brings him into an undisturbed, harmonious coexistence with his surroundings. And he should avoid everything that is detrimental to this harmony, everything that brings unrest and haste into his life. It is not so much a question of getting rid of this restlessness and haste in an external sense, but rather of ensuring that the mood, the intentions and thoughts and the health of the body are not subjected to constant fluctuations. - All this is not as easy for man during his secret training as before. For the higher experiences which now play a part in his life have an uninterrupted effect on his whole existence. If something is not in order within these higher experiences, irregularity is constantly lurking and can throw him off the orderly course at any opportunity. Therefore, the secret disciple must not refrain from doing anything that ensures that he is always in control of his entire being. He should never lack presence of mind or a calm overview of all possible situations in life. But a genuine secret training basically produces all these qualities by itself. And one only learns to know the dangers during such training by simultaneously acquiring the full power to beat them out of the field at the right moments.