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The Rudolf Steiner Archive

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Karmic Relationships VI
GA 240

At the end of his life Rudolf Steiner took up the task that was his special destiny; to bring to the West a knowledge of reincarnation and karma. To do this he gave over eighty lectures in 1924 in which he explicitly and concretely revealed the destinies of various individuals from one life to the next in order to show how the general laws of karma operate in individual cases. He also revealed many details of the karmic streams of the members of the Anthroposophical Society. These volumes constitute an immeasurable contribution to the understanding of reincarnation and karma, and the tasks of the Anthroposophical Society in connection with the Archangel Michael.

Nine lectures given at various cities, between 25th of January and 20th of July, 1924. Translated from shorthand reports unrevised by the lecturer by E. H. Goddard, D. S. Osmond and Mildred Kirkcaldy. The original texts of the lectures are contained in Vol. VI of the series entitled Esoterische Betrachtungen kärmischer Zusammenhänge (No. 240 in the Bibliographical Survey, 1961).

Lecture I January 25, 1924
Moon and Sun: the two gates through which the life of man in its totality reaches beyond the physical world. The Moon endows us with individuality: the Past. The Sun gives access to the universal-human: the Future. Necessity and Freedom. In the destiny of two individuals, Moon-existence and Sun-existence are at work: the connection before the meeting is determined by the Moon-existence, by Necessity; happenings after the meeting is determined by the Sun, by Freedom. After the karmic meeting of two human beings the thread of the karma reaching back into the Past is woven into the thread stretching into the Future. New faculties of perception bring knowledge of cosmic destiny. The esoteric conception of Necessity and Freedom. Impulses of the Christmas Foundation Meeting.
Lecture II April 16, 1924
Concerning the new trend in the Anthroposophical Society. Understanding of the historical evolution of humanity. The working of karma through personalities. Natural Science and Arabism. The mysteries of the Father, the Son, the Spirit, in antiquity. The impulse of Freedom in the evolution of Christianity. The counter-stream in Mohammedanism. The Court of Haroun al Raschid. The Pan Sophia of Amos Comenius. Conrad Ferdinand Meyer and Thomas Becket. Pestalozzi.
Lecture III January 28, 1924
Beings in the heavenly bodies. The Moon Beings keep the records of the past of humanity and of every individual man. Such records determine karma. The function of the Angeloi. Differences in the meetings of individuals. The links between an Initiate and those with whom he comes into contact. Characteristics of the biographies of Initiates.
Lecture IV February 06, 1924
Moon and Sun: the two portals into the spiritual world. The primordial wisdom on Earth imparted by lofty spiritual Beings who went to the Moon after it separated from the Earth. These Beings record the destinies which individuals have in common. Change and replacement of physical substance in heavenly bodies as well as in man. Element of Necessity and Moon influences. Freedom connected with Sun influences. The karmic aspect of illness. Experience of union with the Cosmos. Opposition to Anthroposophy. The Christmas Foundation Meeting.
Lecture V April 09, 1924
Repeated earthly lives and Lessing's treatise, The Education of the Human Race. Concrete reference to the truths of karma. Avoidance of sensationalism. Keynotes in certain domains of life are set by particular personalities; the threads of karma running through their different incarnations. Haroun al Raschid and the Counsellor at his Court. Lord Bacon of Verulam and Amos Comenius. Incarnations of earlier Initiates dependent upon prevailing civilisation. Garibaldi and his tie with Cavour, Mazzini and King Victor Emmanuel. Metamorphosis of forces from one incarnation to the next: forces of limb-system to forces of head-system. Lord Byron and Dr. Steiner's geometry teacher. The Palladium. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Muawiyah. Woodrow Wilson. Earnestness essential in the study of destiny.
Lecture VI June 01, 1924
Waking life and sleep. The Guardian of the Threshold. The backward journey after death lasts for about one third of the span of earthly life. Negative images of the life on Earth. Life in the Cosmos after death. Resolutions in the spiritual world between death and rebirth are potent realities. Passage through the planetary spheres. The Mercury Mysteries and the healing of illnesses. The life-epochs as sources of super-sensible vision. Community with the souls of the dead and the spiritual Hierarchies. Karma and the different planetary spheres. Examples: Schiller, Goethe, Heine, Eliphas Lévi.
The Karma of the Anthroposophical Society and Content of the Anthroposophical Movement
Lecture VII July 18, 1924
Significance of the Christmas Foundation Meeting for the Anthroposophical Society. Karma and the predisposition for Anthroposophy. Souls now gathered in the Anthroposophical Movement were united in spiritual worlds before descending into the physical world. A super-sensible cult presented in mighty Imaginations was a preparation in the early years of the nineteenth century for the Michael stream on Earth. The new Christianity. Two groups of souls in the Anthroposophical Society and their earlier incarnations. Heretical movements. Platonism and Aristotelianism. The School of Chartres and its great teachers. Brunetto Latini's super-sensible experience of the Goddess Natura. The Cistercian and Dominican Orders. Episodes in Dr. Steiner's life in connection with members of the Cistercian Order. Members of the Anthroposophical Society must become conscious of their karma. The end of the century.
Lecture VIII July 19, 1924
On the evolution of certain spiritual Beings connected with humanity. The Gabriel Age and the Michael Age The seven successive Archangel rulerships. Michael's rulership in the age of Alexander the Great and in our own time. Heavenly Intelligence and ‘self-made’ thinkers. Johannes Scotus Erigena. Arabism and Mohammedanism. Haroun al Raschid and his Counsellor at the Court in Baghdad. Their subsequent incarnations. Lord Bacon of Verulam and Amos Comenius. The School of Chartres and Scholasticism. Preparations in the spiritual world for the spiritualisation of the Intelligence that had fallen from the Heavens upon Earth. Nominalism and Realism. Vincenz Knauer. Goethe's Fairy Tale. Ahrimanic demonic powers striving to take possession of men. Maurice Maeterlinck's comments on Dr. Steiner. Michael's battle with the Dragon is waged in the hearts of men since the last third of the nineteenth century. At the end of the twentieth century mankind will either stand at the grave of civilisation or at the beginning of the Age when Michael's battle will be fought out to victory.
Lecture IX July 20, 1924
The super-sensible School of Michael from the fifteenth on into the eighteenth century. The outcome of this schooling is the urge that brings human beings to Anthroposophy. The opposing Ahrimanic School in the sub-earthly realm. Certain souls incarnated on Earth — often quite simple men — have been aware of the possible sinister situation of the abandonment of humanity by the Michael rulership and the advent of impulses rising from below like demonic vapours striving to conquer the Intelligence. Printing is a power placed by Ahriman in opposition to Michael. What the attitude of Anthroposophists to printing must be. Ahrimanic spirits are most potent in attacks against the Age of Michael when a diminution of consciousness takes place in human beings. This occurred in many of those who were entangled in events which led to the outbreak of the War in 1914. Each particular life-period enables the Initiate to have vision of the individual secrets of existence. “To behold the secrets of worlds in their interconnections one must have passed the age of sixty-three.” Ahriman can possess human beings and appear as an author. Necessity for alertness to such phenomena. The end of the century.