Category Archives: Meditation

Festival of United Soul Endeavor

Whitsun Verse by Rudolf Steiner:
There first
Where sense can know no more,
Stands the portal, which discloses
Life-reality
To Soul-being;
This portal’s key the Soul may fashion
If she herself grow strong within the strife
By World-Powers waged on their own ground
With human forces;
If of her own accord she puts to flight
The sleep, which at the frontier of her senses
Cloaks the forces of knowledge
In spirit-night. (Translated by Owen Barfield)

Kip Decker

Beloved Friends –

During our time together on this Whitsun day, we will work with the Whitsun imagination to creatively explore how we may engage in the lifting out of the ‘me’ into the ‘we’, out of opinion into wisdom; warming the I, to open the heart, in support of healthy community. We will endeavor to strengthen our individual soul forces to collectively open the portal into the Spirit worlds.

Leonor Fini

As Steiner’s Whitsun verse states: “This portal’s key the Soul may fashion If she herself grow strong within the strife” …  

We will create an Ecclesia, a vessel, a chalice, a sheath for the Spirit. Then the spirit flame can spread out to become what Steiner called a “World Whitsun”, which began in earnest at the Christmas conference, where the inverted Whitsun, was born, the idea of moving the spirit that has flowed through the head into the heart, transforming it into wisdom to redeem our intelligence, & then back out as a gift to humanity.

Iris Sullivan

Our work is to take our individual Inner Whitsun & expand it, into what Steiner calls the “World Festival of Knowledge” a path leading from ‘Spirit Recollection’, to ‘Spirit Sensing’, to ‘Spirit Beholding’.

In this sense the Christmas Conference, in all its spiritual reality reveals itself as the true Whitsun for  anthroposophers. Those who strive to take into their souls the Wisdom of the Holy Spirit concerning the human being – Anthropos-Sophia, which is the knowledge of the grail held aloft by Michael in this present age of the consciousness soul.

Let’s think about it. The foundation stone was formed by Rudolf Steiner at the Christmas conference out of the Father-forces rising from the depths, gravity, unconscious will, the Son-forces working in the periphery, warmth, creative love, & the Spirit-forces descending from the heights, consciousness, wisdom.

Thru Steiner’s profound mystery deed, an altogether new relationship of the macrocosmic forces working within man – the thoughts of the Spirit revealed in the human head, Christ working in the heart, & the will of the Father fulfilled in the deeds of the limbs, was made openly manifest.

David Newbatt

When Steiner took on the karma of the society he gave the Michaelic impulse the possibility of flowing directly into the earth sphere & into those active in the Anthroposophical society.

El Greco

Here we see a direct relationship with the original Pentecost, which was the 3rd & final stage of Christ, the Sun Being’s union with the stream of Earthly Being, & the mission of Anthroposophy, as the Proclamation of World Pentecost.

Larry Young

Yes, we live in a potent time, when divergent karmic streams have the possibility of coming together-‘That Good May Become,’ a time when, some say, the Platonist’s of the School of Chartres & the Aristotelian-Dominicans, The Arthur & Grail streams with true Rosicrucianism, meet the new Michaelic Grail imagination arising in the human soul. A renewed chalice whose substance is Love, whose form is Imagination & whose light of thought which radiates, is redeemed Michaelic Intelligence. This transforms the stone of the wise, into the dodecahedral foundation stone of love.

Sally Furner

For Michael frees thoughts from the realm of the head, opening a path to the heart, bringing forth that shining, raying-out of the divine chalice, that celestial light of redeemed intelligence, which like the radiance of the spiritual sun, can unite into a single whole the Spiritual substance of love & human love, in the Holy Grail that was set into our souls at the Christmas conference.  Calling ever & again for a renewal of the spiritual quest.

May this ‘Festival of United Soul Endeavor’ enkindle us in the true kinship of conscious community

with fellowship & love   ~Hazel Archer Ginsberg

 

Current Festival Events

Deathday of a Modern Knight

Dear Friends –
Today 30 March 2017, marks the 93rd anniversary of Rudolf Steiner’s Death
25 February 1861 – 30 March 1925

From “The Life and Work of Rudolf Steiner’ by Guenther Wachsmuth: “Even the last weeks in March 1925, during which he had to endure unspeakable suffering, were devoted in the most intense concentration to spiritual research, creative work, & bestowal…

…the beginning of his shared anthroposophical work with Marie von Sivers stood before his inner eye. It had not been easy for Marie Steiner to live with the increasing intense collaboration between Rudolf Steiner & Ita Wegman over the course of the last few years. Ita Wegman was so entirely different than she was. Now she was forced to deny herself the opportunity to care for the person she loved the most. Trouble with her legs inhibited her from doing this. That they had spoken about this with each other is evident from a letter he wrote her in Berlin on his official birthday:

“I write you these lines at about the same time that you would usually be sitting at my side. Thinking about how beautiful it is to listen to you speck about your activities & to speak with you about various aspects of your work moves me deeply. And when I know that you have now & again been able to read my Autobiography the description of our shared work, I feel deeply how closely connected we are. That destiny has brought other people close to me is simply the way destiny works. And my sickness has shown just how incisive this destiny can be. But you found the way to understanding; this is a blessing for me. To feel the unity of feeling & thinking in discernment is something I can do only with you. That I was not able to show you the last pages of the Steffen article before it went to the printer was a hardship for me. Then for myself, I find inner competence only in your judgement. Through you art is raised into the realms of the hierarchies. I gaze with wonder upon everything you achieve & with such devotion. In my thoughts I am with you” RS

Shielded under the devoted care of Dr. Ita Wegman, he still communicated many a spiritual message received, & he had us to report to him what was occurring on the hill of Dornach. He loved the living noise of hammering & scaffold-building which penetrated from the building place of the Goetheanum into the quiet of his sickroom, announcing the building in the process of coming into being. He was united through his council & help with this work to his last breath & beyond death.

The last moments in his earthly life were free from all struggle with the physical entity, free from all uncertainty such as characterizes the death of so many human beings; his countenance spoke of peace, grace, inner certitude, spiritual vision. He folded his hands over his breast; his eyes were shiningly & strongly directed into worlds with which in vision he was united. As he drew his last breath, he himself closed his eyes; but this filled the room not with the experience of an end, but with that of a most sublime spiritual action. An exalted, transfigured wakefulness spoke out of his countenance, out of the praying strength of the hands. As the great artists of the Middle Ages gave to the pictures of the knights resting upon the sarcophagus the expression indicating that their closed eyes were still beholding, their resting form was still able to stride forward, so did the figure here resting speak of a super-terrestrial wakefulness, of a striding forward into the spheres of the spirit.

The forward striding figure of the Christ statue, pointing into the expanses of the universe, which he himself had created & at whose feet he now lay, spoke for the eye of those left behind on earth what was taking place for the spirit of a great human being who had dedicated his life to the annunciation of the Christ. Even in dying, Rudolf Steiner bestowed upon humanity the most sublime gift of consolation: the certitude that death is a waking entrance into worlds of life & action.

From Ita Wegman Nachrichtenblatt 1925: “At 3 am, I noticed a slight change in his breathing. I approached his bed; he was awake. He looked at me & asked whether I was tired. This question touched me. His pulse was not as strong as it had been, but much faster. I called Dr. Noll in order to speak with him about what ought to be done. Herr Steiner was not astonished to see him there in the middle of the night & greeted him amiably. “I don’t feel too bad” he said “I just can’t sleep.” We turned the light out again. At 4 am, he called me because the pain had reappeared. He said, “As soon as the day comes, we want to continue the treatment that I suggested”…Naturally, we didn’t wait for the day to come but did what was necessary. But then the situation changed quickly – his pulse grew weaker, his breathing more rapid. And we had to experience how his life was gradually extinguished…He went as though it were the obvious thing to do. It seemed to me as though the dice had been thrown for a last decision. When they fell, there was no struggle, no attempt to remain upon the earth any longer. He gazed calmly into the space before him for a time, said a couple of tender words to me, consciously closed his eyes & folded his hands”

Again from “The Life and Work of Rudolf Steiner’ by Guenther Wachsmuth: In the lofty darkened space of the studio stood the bier of him who had completed this earthly life, surrounded by a sea of flowers, by the light of candles, the death watch by his side day & night. Many hundreds of persons came in soundless silence for the last visit, went back into life comforted, trusting, having received in their affliction assurance of the virtuousness of the Spirit, of rebirth. On the 3rd day the body was brought into the great workshop, to lie in state finally in the lecture hall, at the place from which he had for decades proclaimed the knowledge of the spirit. At the request of Frau Marie Steiner, Fredrich Rittelmeyer conducted the funeral service which was the gift of Rudolf Steiner to the Christian Community.

The next morning the coffin was carried away for cremation. When it was passing by the newly erected structure of the new Goetheanum, the workers at the building stood still on the scaffolding & greeted the master builder & friend. At the cremation ritual, Albert Steffen united us with our beloved teacher in a picture of his being which only the artist could draw in such shining perfection. He spoke of “the friend of God and leader of humanity”. And what has come into being in us earthly persons through the leadership & schooling of Rudolf Steiner as a certitude, what we are called upon to do in his spirit, he summarized in the following words:

“He has again showed the world to us in such a way that we know it has come forth out of god. He has died in such a way that we feel: Christ lives in this death. May his immortal Spirit be resurrected in our deeds. We will, as well as we can, make them holy.”

“To create centres of peace & love in which the Christ can resurrect.”
~written on the urn that holds the ashes of Rudolf Steiner

What a blessing to receive the teachings of this great initiate. May we continue our connection with him in the spiritual worlds & ever enliven our Michaelic work with The Christ & the Being of Anthroposophia.

~Hazel Archer-Ginsberg

***

Upcoming Events & Festivals 

The Hidden Holy Night-Cosmic New Year

Toni Carmine Salerno

Deeply embedded in our cultural tradition of ‘Ringing out the old & Ringing in the new’ on the eve of the New Year, lives many celestial synchronicities, which change every year, but for the last 70 years, with 30 more to go – at Midnight, we are directly ‘downstream’ from the star Sirius.

Because Sirius is the brightest star in our sky, next to the Sun, in antiquity it was known as ‘The Shining One’. The ancient Egyptians called Sirius ‘Isis’ (Sothis) & built their calendar around the rising & setting of this magnificent star. It is interesting to note that our time now is a recapitulation of ancient Egypt (the 3rd cultural epoch) What can we take from that time & make it new?

 Nassa Lemit

The Egyptians believed that Sirius had a tremendous effect upon life on our planet. In particular, they felt that Sirius could open a portal into the spiritual world, so they oriented the pyramid at Giza to the Sirius light.

The Sirius system is directly “upstream” of our solar system within the galactic arm of our Milky Way Galaxy (the Orion arm). And of all the stars in our skies, only Sirius exactly matches the length of our solar year, 365.25 days. This exact correlation has led some to surmise that Sirius is related to our Sun as a binary star. Sirius imprints upon us, like the Sun, a realignment of our own vibrational patterns, touched by the perfection of this Golden Proportion.

Our magical midnight of New Beginnings marks the moment when the energies of Sirius, directly overhead, & the forces of the Sun shining thru the earth from the other side, bring transformational re-alignment. The Golden mean holds the codes of perfection which are eternal. To be in conscious attendance of the positional relationship of the Sun & the star Sirius in the mid-heaven at midnight -visualizing the Earth – & all life – in its ultimate perfection – enables us to receive the empowerment of the Spiritual world directly into our consciousness

***

Behold the Sun
At the midnight hour;
Build with stones in the lifeless ground,
Thus in decay and in the night of Death
Find the Creation’s new beginning,
Young morning’s strength;
Glory in the heights the eternal Word of Gods;
Shelter in the depths the Powers of Peace.
In darkness dwelling, create a Sun.
In matter weaving, know the joy of Spirit”! ~Rudolf Steiner Schmidt Number: S-1456

On New Year’s Eve our folk soul briefly releases us & consequently what we then think is perceived by the highest hierarchies & has the power in it to be brought into reality” ~Rudolf Steiner in conversation with H. Hahn, reported in Das Goetheanum, # 3, Jan 4, 1990

***

“It is really the case that what was taught the Mystery-pupils at Ephesus concerning the primeval Word lies in the opening sentences of the John Gospel. It is indeed very fitting for Anthroposophists to turn their attention today, on this Cosmic New Year’s Eve, to these secrets which rest in the lap of time; for in a certain sense, that which stood here on the Dornach hill as the Goetheanum had become the centre of anthroposophical activity. The pain we feel today must continue to be pain, and will do so in everyone who was able to feel what the Goetheanum was intended to be. But to one who is striving upwards in his knowledge towards the spiritual all that takes place in the physical world must be for him an external manifestation, a picture of the spiritual which lies behind it. We as human beings striving after spiritual knowledge must be able to turn what has caused this pain into an opportunity for looking spiritually into a revelation which leads us into greater and greater depths. This Goetheanum was to have been a place in which one hoped to have spoken, and in which we have spoken again and again of those things which are connected with the opening words of the John Gospel:

In the Primal Beginning was the Word — the Logos — and the Word was with God, and a god was the Word.”

Then the Goetheanum was destroyed by fire. This terrible picture of the burning Goetheanum arises before us. The pain may give birth to the summons to look ever more deeply into that which lives in the power of our thought, into this burning Goetheanum of New Year’s Eve. That is an experience, painful though it is, which leads us into greater and greater depths. That which we wished to have founded in this Goetheanum, which is connected with the John Gospel, these already form an enclosure within these burning consuming flames. And it is an important impulse which we may grasp: Let these flames be for us the occasion to look through them to other flames, those flames which once long ago consumed the Temple of Ephesus. Let us look upon them as a summons to us to try and fathom that which stands at the beginning of the John Gospel. Urged by this painfully sacred impulse, let us look back from the John Gospel to the Temple of Ephesus — which once was also burned down — and then in the Goetheanum flames, which speak indeed so painfully we shall receive a monition from that which streams into the Akasha with the burning flames of the Ephesian Temple.

Herostratus burns  the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus

Even today, if we look back on that night of misfortune, to those fierce flames of the Goetheanum conflagration, do we not still find in them the molten metals of the musical instruments which speak a language so pure and holy? Do we not find in these molten metals those musical instruments which conjured into the flames those wonderful colours — variously speaking colours — colours closely connected with the metals? Through connection with the metals something arises like memory in the earth-substance. This memory we have of that which was consumed with the Temple at Ephesus. And just as these two conflagrations may be connected, so the longing to investigate the meaning of “In the Primal Beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and a god was the Word” may be connected somewhat with the words which again and again were made clear to the pupil at Ephesus: “Study the mystery of man in the small word, in the micrologos; thereby thou shalt make thyself ripe to experience in thyself the mystery of the macrologos.”

Saat Chion

Man is the microcosm as contrasted with the world which is the macrocosm, but he also bears within him the mysteries of the cosmos, and we can decipher the cosmic mystery contained in the first three verses of the John Gospel if we bear in mind in the right sense that into which, as into many other things also, the flames of the Goetheanum condensed, as if in written characters:

Behold the Logos
In the burning fire
Seek the solution
In the house of Diana.”

 The Akashic Record of the fire of last New Year’s Eve speaks these words very clearly, together with many others; and they make on us the demand to establish in the microcosm the micrologos, so that man may gain the understanding of that out of which his whole being has been formed — the macrocosmos — through the macrologos. ~Rudolf Steiner, Mystery Centres, Lecture IV, Dornach, December 1923

Jean Mignon

***

The Christmas Conference:

World History in the light of Anthroposophy, Lecture VIII: The Burning of the Ephesian Temple and the Goetheanum, Dornach 31st December 1923 Morning

The Envy of the Gods — The Envy of Human Beings

***

Mieke Filmich.

“Our end-of-year festival will begin with Frau Dr. Steiner giving us a recitation of the beautiful Norwegian legend of Olaf Åsteson, of whom we are told that at the approach to Christmas he fell into a kind of sleep which lasted for thirteen days; the thirteen holy days that we have explored in various ways. In the course of this sleep he had significant experiences, that he was able to narrate when he awoke.

Olaf Åsteson, Olaf the son of earth, experiences various secrets of the cosmic All whilst he is transported into the macrocosm during the thirteen shortest days. And the nordic legend which has recently been extricated from old accounts, tells of these experiences Olaf Åsteson had between Christmas and New Year up till the 6th January. We often have reason to remember this former manner in which the microcosm took part in the macrocosm, and we can then take these things further. First of all, however, let us hear the legend of Olaf Åsteson, the earth son, who during the time in which we are now, experienced the secrets of cosmic existence in his meeting with the earth spirit. Let us listen to these experiences.

The Dream Song
I
Come listen to my song!
The song of a nimble youth.
Of Olaf Åsteson will I sing,
Who lay and slept so long.
II
He laid him down on Christmas Eve
And soon lay deeply sleeping.
Nor could he awaken
Until the people went to church
Upon the thirteenth day.
Of Olaf Åsteson will I sing,
Who lay and slept so long.
He laid him down on Christmas Eve
And he slept long indeed!
He could not awaken
Until the bird was on the wing
Upon the thirteenth day.
Of Olaf Åsteson will I sing,
Who lay and slept so long.
Olaf could not awaken
Until the sun shone o’er the peaks
Upon the thirteenth day.
Then saddled he his nimble horse
And rode in haste to the church.
Of Olaf Åsteson will I sing,
Who lay and slept so long.
The priest was at the altar
Reading holy mass
When Olaf alighted at the gate
To tell the many dreams
That had passed through his soul
When he did sleep so long.
Of Olaf Åsteson will I sing,
Who lay and slept so long.
Then old and young they all gave heed,
To Olaf’s words they harkened
That told them of his dreams
Of Olaf Åsteson will I sing,
Who lay and slept so long.
III
‘I laid me down on Christmas Eve
And soon lay deeply sleeping.
Nor could I awaken
Before the people went to church
Upon the thirteenth day.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
I was borne up into the clouds
Thrown down to the ocean’s depths,
And whosoever will follow after
Good cheer he will not find.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
I was borne up into the clouds
Then hurled into murky swamps,
And I saw the horrors of hell
And also heaven’s light.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
I had to go through deep, dark clefts
Where heaven’s rivers rushed and roared.
The power to see them was not mine
Yet I could hear their roaring.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
My coal-black horse he did not neigh,
Nor did my good hounds bark,
The bird of morning did not sing
For a wonder lay on all.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
I had to travel in spiritland
Through stretch on stretch of thorny heath,
My scarlet mantle was torn to shreds
The nails of my feet likewise.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
Then I came to the Gjallar Bridge
Suspended in the windblown heights,
Studded it is with rich red gold
And the nails thereon have sharp points.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
The spirit snake he struck at me
The spirit hound bit me,
And lo! the bull did bar the way.
These are the three beasts of the bridge,
Most wicked are they all.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
The hound he is a snappish beast
The serpent waits to strike,
The bull is ready to attack!
And no one may pass o’er the bridge
Who will not honour truth!
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
I passed o’er the Gjallar Bridge
On dizzy heights and narrow.
I who had waded in the swamps . . . .
Behind me now they lie!
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
I had waded in the swamps
There seemed no foothold I could find
As I passed o’er the Gjallar Bridge
Earth did I feel within my mouth
As the dead who lie in their graves.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
To the waters then I came,
’Twas where the icy masses gleamed
Like unto flames of blue. . . .
And God did guide me in my steps
That I did not come close.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
So I went on the wintry way
And saw on my right hand:
Like unto paradise it was,
Light shining far and wide.
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.
God’s Holy Mother then I saw
Amidst most wondrous glory!
‘Now take thy way to Brooksvalin,
the place where souls are judged!’
The moon shone bright
And all the paths led far away.

IV
In other worlds I tarried then
Through many nights and long;
And God alone can know
The suffering I saw there —
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
I could see a young man
Who in life had killed a child.
Now he must carry him always
And stand in mud to his knee
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
Also I saw an old man
Wearing a cloak of lead;
Thus was he punished,
The miser on earth,
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
And men appeared before me
Wearing apparel of fire;
So does their dishonesty
Weigh on their poor souls
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
Children I also saw,
Glowing coals beneath their feet,
In life they did their parents ill,
Now must their spirits feel it
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
And to a house I had to go
Where witches toiled in blood;
This was the blood of those
Who had enraged them whilst on earth,
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
Now there came riding from the North
Wild hordes of evil spooks,
Led by the Prince of Hell,
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
This horde riding from the North
Was the wickedest ever seen;
And the Prince of Hell rode out in front,
And he rode on his coal-black steed
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
Yet now came a host from the South
Bringing holy calm,
And at their head rode Saint Michael
At the side of Jesu Christ
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
The souls weighed down by sin
Had to tremble in anguish and fear!
Their tears ran down in streams
To hear of their wicked deeds
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.
Michael stood in majesty
And weighed the souls of men
Upon his heavenly scales,
And near him, judging, stood
The Lord of Judgment, Jesu Christ
In Brooksvalin, where souls
World judgment undergo.

V
Blessed is he who in earthly life
Gives shoes unto the poor;
He does not need, with naked feet,
To walk on the heath of thorn.
Thus speaks the Balance,
And World truth
Sounds forth in spirit heights.
Blessed is he who in earthly life
Unto the poor gave bread!
For nothing of harm can come to him
From the hounds of spiritland.
Thus speaks the Balance,
And World truth
Sounds forth in spirit heights.
Blessed is he who in earthly life
Gave corn unto the poor!
The horns of the bull are no threat to him
When he crosses the Gjallar Bridge.
Thus speaks the Balance,
And World truth
Sounds forth in spirit heights.
Blessed is he who in earthly life
Unto the poor gives clothes!
He need not fear the freezing wastes
Of ice in Brooksvalin.
Thus speaks the Balance,
And World truth
Sounds forth in spirit heights.

VI
And young and old they all gave heed,
To Olaf’s words they harkened
That told them of his dreams.
You have slept long indeed. . . .
Awaken now, O Olaf Åsteson!

This legend brings us tidings of ancient knowledge and insight into the spiritual worlds, which we shall regain once more through what we call the spiritual-scientific world outlook.

The human soul has slept long indeed, but world spirits will approach and call to it, ‘Awaken now, O Olaf Asteson!’ — Only we have to prepare ourselves in the right way, so that it does not happen that we are faced with the call, ‘Awaken now, O Olaf Åsteson!’ and have not the ears to hear it. That is why we are engaged in spiritual science, so that we shall have the ears to hear, when the call to be spiritually awake sounds in human evolution.

~Rudolf Steiner, Art as Seen in the Light of Mystery Wisdom, Lecture 4, COSMIC NEW YEAR, Dornach, 31st December 1914

***

“…Two cycles interpenetrate at this time of the year, approximately around New Year’s Eve.

The approach of New Year’s Eve may therefore appear to us like the approach of a messenger from the spiritual world, revealing to us the mysteries connected with the end of the year and bringing us the following message: The secret of existence consists in the fact that cycles INTERPENETRATE

“Behold, in the midst of the dark cold winter season the vegetable consciousness unites with the mineral consciousness of the earth. Let this be a sign to you that the earth too has its own cycle, namely the great cosmic year mentioned by Zarathustra, which goes from one Cosmic New Year’s Eve to the other, and which we must understand if we wish to grasp the course of human development.”

Zarathustra speaks of twelve thousands of years. He described the course of one Earthly Year, and divided it into four seasons representing the course of human evolution upon the earth. This is deeply rooted in the spiritual mysteries.

The thirteen days from the 24th of December to the 6th of January are the days in which the plants’ consciousness unites with the mineral consciousness. If the human being can transfer himself into the consciousness of the plants, he can see and dream of many mysteries which pass through his heart in many forms — he can have dreams such as that of Olaf Åsteson.

If we develop such feelings and moods, we obtain the right attitude towards the aims of our spiritual knowledge; these warm feelings which stream through our heart are a preparation for the New Cosmic Year, and they enable us to await it worthily, to look forward to that cosmic New Year’s Eve which brings a new cosmic year. In future incarnations, when our souls will pass through the great Cosmic New Year, we shall experience it in the right way if the end of the year which closes the small cycle of twelve months becomes a symbol for the great end of the year which closes a cycle of twelve thousand years.

This is the secret of our existence. The things which take place upon a small scale always correspond to the things which take place upon a large scale, and upon a large scale the things are the same as upon a small scale. The small scale, the course of one year, can only be grasped if it becomes a symbol for the great cosmic course, for the cycle which encompasses thousands of years.

The year is an image for the Aeons. And Aeons are the reality of symbols which we encounter in the course of one year. If we really understand the year’s course, our hearts will be deeply moved to the mysteries of the cosmos, at this time of the year which marks the beginning of a new year. Let us try to attune our soul so that it can look into the new year conscious of the fact that it can bear within it the year’s course as a symbol for the great COSMIC course, which encompasses all the mysteries pursued by spiritual Beings who surge and weave through the universe from aeon to aeon, in the same way in which the Lesser Gods pursue the mysteries connected with the development of the vegetable and mineral Kingdoms during the course of one year. ~Rudolf Steiner THE YEAR’S COURSE AS A SYMBOL FOR THE GREAT COSMIC YEAR 31st of December, 1915.

***

On New Year’s Eve it is always fitting to remember how past and future are linked together in life and in the existence of the world, how past and future are linked in the whole life of the Cosmos of which man is a part, how past and future are linked in every fraction of that life with which our own individual existence is connected, is interwoven through all that we were able to do and to think during the past year, and through all that we are able to plan for the coming year

What we are striving for in Anthroposophical Spiritual Science is this: To receive with goodwill all that is seeking to enter through spiritual revelation from another world — from a world, however, which bears within it this world of ours — and to clothe these revelations in terms by which they can be communicated to humanity. These revelations are nothing less than that which definitely (in a certain respect) guarantees the future of mankind.

As long as questions of this kind are not considered with due earnestness, we have not arrived at the right understanding of the Cosmic New Year’s Eve. At the present moment, it is essential to reach this right understanding. It is essential for us to extend our sympathies — alas, our sympathies often arise from egoistic sources — to the great human relations, and to feel for the whole of mankind that human sympathy which impels us to make a spiritual movement like this effectively fruitful for the evolution of mankind.

May you experience, my dear friends, at this very time, that it is the Spirit of the Cosmos itself, which has been seeking entrance. May you experience during the coming night, that this Spirit which seeks to enter humanity, shall here so be served that the souls of those, who will to feel with and who will to think with Anthroposophical Spiritual Science, may feel their union with this new Spirit which wills to enter the world — the Spirit which alone can bring to the earthly world, the world that is destroying itself — the new upbuilding impulse out of Heaven. In this hour, a symbolic hour every year, demanding that we experience it as the decisive hour between past and future — in this hour may you unite your souls with the new Spirit; may you so experience in your souls the contact of the past year with the coming year, that the Cosmic Year which is passing away, may contact itself with the dawning Cosmic Year.

But the passing Cosmic Year will still send many an after-effect into the future; destructive forces into the spheres of Spirit, of Equity, of Economics. Therefore it is all the more needful, that as many men as possible shall be seized in the innermost depths of their souls by the New Year of the Spiritual Future, and shall develop a Will which may be the foundation of a new spiritual world, a world to be built into the future evolution of mankind”.

~Rudolf Steiner The Cosmic New Year, lecture 4, 31st December, 1919

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Van James

May we all meet in consciousness the spiritual powers that avail themselves to us on this Cosmic New Year’s Eve

In Peace, Unconditional Love & Good Will

 ~Hazel Archer Ginsberg

Current Festival Events

7th Holy Night: Spirits of Wisdom

30 December 2016 – Astro-Weather: Can you spot the thin crescent Moon at the twilight time? Look low in the southwest just after the Sun goes down. The Moon is located about three fists at arm’s length to the lower right of shiny Venus. A similar distance to the Moon’s upper right look for sparkling Altair

Josephine Wall

Although Saturn passed on the opposite side of the Sun from Earth less than three weeks ago (on December 10), it already appears low in the southeast during morning twilight. The ringed planet lies above the horizon 45 minutes before sunrise. It is the brightest point of light in this part of the sky

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Patrica Lamb

Rudolf Steiner’s Lectures on this day

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

7th Night of Hanukkah

1816 – The Treaty of St. Louis signed between the United States the Council of Three Fires (united tribes of Ottawa, Ojibwa, and Potawatomi) living on the Illinois & Milwaukee rivers. The tribes, their chiefs, & their warriors had to relinquish all right, claim, & title to land which connected Chicago & Lake Michigan with the Illinois River. Today, Indian Boundary Park in West Ridge, Chicago commemorates this Treaty. In exchange the tribes were to be paid $1,000 in merchandise over 12 years

1825 – The Treaty of St. Louis between the United States & the Shawnee Nation. In this treaty, the Shawnee gave up their lands to the United States near Cape Geredeau. In return for Cape Geredeau, the United States government gave the Shawnee a sum of 11,000 dollars & leased to them a blacksmith shop for five years providing all tools & 300 pounds of iron annually

1853 – Gadsden Purchase: The United States buys land from Mexico to facilitate railroad building over  a 29,670-square-mile region of present-day southern Arizona & southwestern New Mexico

1903 – A fire at the Iroquois Theater in Chicago, Illinois kills at least 655

1916 – This is the 100 year anniversary of the deathday of Grigori Rasputin, the Russian mystic, spiritual healer & monk, whose name became proverbial for the intrusion of occult influence on politics – murdered in the midst of the WW1. Rasputin was the spiritual & medical adviser to Tsar Nicolas II of Russia, the last Russian Emperor, his wife Alexandra, & their daughter Anastasia. He called himself the “secretary of the Tsar’s soul”. He prophesied that his death would lead to the demise of the Tsardom. And so it was, that 2 months after his death, in the February Revolution of 1917, the monarchy was abolished, & the Bolsheviks took power in Russia. The royal couple was murdered & only Anastasia survived exiled in the West, never recognized as the true heir.  Rasputin’s murder was initiated by the British secret service at a decisive phase of the war to prevent a peace treaty. His reputation became fraught with accusations of decadence, so it’s interesting to read some statements about him from Rudolf Steiner. Even more intriguing are the after-death messages from Helmuth von Moltke’s soul that Steiner transmitted to Eliza Moltke his widow, which speak to Molke’s encounter with Rasputin’s soul in the after-life.

When the Russian Tsar & Tarina used the inner experiences of Rasputin for the purposes of government, the people had a right to be afraid of that, because revelations from the spiritual world should only have a role in spiritual life, not in the political field. In this field only what has become our sound reason by way of the spiritual revelations should intrude. Rasputin had not developed sound reasoning, although he had revelations”. ~Rudolf Steiner 14 Feb. 1920 Dornach

Rasputin worked directly on the will. That should not be. But people want that. He really is an unrestrained man, the ‘Rasputin’ (Russian: one without a path) Everything said about him is true, but he is nevertheless a God-Seer, that is an occult term for a grade of initiation. It is only thru him that the spiritual world, the Russian Folk-Spirit, can now take effect in Russia, thru nobody else.” ~Rudolf Steiner according to Assya Turgeneva in the early years of WWW1, recorded in her book Erinnerugen an Rudolf Steiner

1936 – The United Auto Workers union in the Flint, Michigan, stages its first sit-down strike. Workers occupied several General Motors plants for more than forty days, & repelled the efforts of the police & National Guard to retake them.  A wave of strikes followed, but were put-down by the end of the decade, as the courts & the National Labor Relations Board ruled that sit-down strikes were illegal & that strikers would be fired

2009 – A segment of the Lanzhou–Zhengzhou–Changsha pipeline ruptures in Shaanxi, China, and approximately 40,000 US gal. of diesel oil flows down the Wei River before finally reaching the Yellow River

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7th Holy Night:  December 30-31, Constellation of Virgo, Virgin (ruling the abdomen & digestive system) The Sphere of the Kyriotetes, Spirits of Wisdom, Dominions

Rudolf Steiner

The imagination of the Heavenly Virgin, as an indication of the cosmic being of the The Divine Sophia – the Archetypal Wisdom of the World – depicted in the 12th chapter of the Apocalypse of St John, as the woman clothed with the Sun, wearing a crown of stars & standing on the sickle moon with the dragon at her feet – reveals to us its profound connection with this Hierarchy. The ancients knew that the 12 stars corresponded to the Old Saturn evolution (Steiner’s planetary seal shows 9 stars- the process of a gradual formation of the Zodiac); the Sun image reflects the Old Sun phase (the Virgin gives birth to the Sun & is then clothed by the Sun: a picture of the birth of the etheric body) & the sickle moon to the Old Moon evolution (resulting in the origin on Earth of silver, the metal that testifies to the overcoming of the lower Moon-Forces by the higher forces of the Sun)

We find all these qualities in the being of the Mary of the Luke Gospel , an earthly reflection of this Heavenly Sophia – the twin soul of the Nathan Jesus. The Mary of the Matthew Gospel was the earlier incarnation of Eve the 1st earthly woman.

Sophia Calder

In the 5th Gospel, Rudolf Steiner tells us that at the Baptism, the 2 Marys became united to create a vessel for The Divine Sophia, in the same way that the 2 Jesus children, united at the steps of the Temple in Jerusalem, to create the perfect vessel for The Christ.

After this merging, the Mary of the Matthew Gospel became the earthly reflection of the Divine Sophia, opening the way for humanity to become the lowest member of the Sobornal (collective) being of the Sophia. Rudolf Steiner named her Anthroposophia, the force of the Wisdom that lives in the soul of humanity. This archetype carries the contemplation of the sacrifice offered by the Thrones (8th Holy Night) to the Cherubim (9th) to induce the Kyriotetes to radiate out their essence of Wisdom, which for us becomes the virtue depicted by the ‘Mother of God’ as selfless giving.

In order to receive the experience of the Christ, this Wisdom had to ‘pierce Mary’s heart like a sword’ (Luke 2:35) so that there might pour forth from Mary-Sophia the highest virtue of true giving, into the hearts of humanity. At the foot of the cross, John the disciple Jesus loved, is asked by Christ-Jesus to take this Sophia-Wisdom-the Mother of God-into his ‘house’ or soul. Thru this he becomes known as ‘John the Divine’ because he is embodied by the Divine Sophia, which enables him to write his Gospel & the Book of Revelations. This is also outpictured in his later incarnation, as ‘The Chymical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz‘.

 Matthaus Merian

So on this 7th Night let us look within, to find the realm of The Virgin, & feel our connection to the being of Anthroposophy. May we seek to acquire the Wisdom that gives birth to The Christ within

 ~Hazel Archer Ginsberg

Jan de Kok

Virtue: Courtesy becomes steadiness of feeling

Current Festival Events

 

6th Holy Night: Scales-The Sphere of the Dynamis, Spirits of Movement

29 December 2016 – Astro-Weather: New Moon occurs at 12:53 am CST. At its New phase, the Moon crosses the sky with the Sun & so remains hidden in our star’s glare. A new lunar month begins & unlike a solar calendar month, which averages 30.437 days long, a lunar month (from one new Moon to the next) averages 29.531 days. This means that, on average, you’ll see the Moon in the same phase about one day earlier every calendar month.

Zenobia Warwick Goble (1862-1943)

Uranus reached opposition more than two months ago, but this outer planet can still be seen climbing high in the south around 6 pm CST, halfway to the zenith. It reaches its stationary point in southern Pisces today, when it lies east-southeast of Zeta Piscium.

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Rudolf Steiner’s Lectures on this day

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

6th Night of Hanukkah

Nicolas Cordier

The Feast Day of King David, ancestor to Jesus.  There are various Old Testament reports on David: God is angered when Saul, Israel’s king, unlawfully offers a sacrifice,  & later disobeys a divine instruction to not only kill all of the Amalekites. Consequently, he sends the prophet Samuel to anoint David, the youngest son of Jesse of Bethlehem, to be king instead.

God sends an evil spirit to torment Saul. Saul’s courtiers recommend that he send for David, a man skillful on the lyre, wise in speech, & brave in battle. So David enters Saul’s service as one of the royal armor-bearers, & plays the lyre to soothe the king whenever the evil spirit is upon him.

War comes between Israel & the Philistines, & the giant Goliath challenges the Israelites to send out a champion to face him in single combat. David, sent by his father to bring provisions to his brothers serving in Saul’s army, declares that he can defeat Goliath. Refusing the king’s offer of the royal armor, he kills Goliath with his sling. Saul inquires the name of the young hero’s father.

Saul sets David over his army. All Israel loves David, but his popularity causes Saul to fear him (“What else can he wish but the kingdom?”). Saul plots his death, but Saul’s son Jonathan, one of those who loves David, warns him of his father’s schemes & David flees. He becomes a vassal of the Philistine king Achish of Gath, but Achish’s nobles question his loyalty, & he is left behind to guard the camp when the Philistines march against Saul. Jonathan & Saul are killed, &David is anointed king over Judah. In the north, Saul’s son Ish-Bosheth is anointed king of Israel, & war ensues until Ish-Bosheth is killed.

With the death of Saul’s son, the elders of Israel come to Hebron & David is anointed king over all Israel. He conquers Jerusalem, previously a Jebusite stronghold, & makes it his capital. He brings the Ark of the Covenant to the city, intending to build a temple for God, but the prophet Nathan forbids it, prophesying that the temple would be built by one of his sons. Nathan also prophesies that God has made a covenant with the house of David: “Your throne shall be established forever.”

During a battle to conquer the Ammonite capital of Rabbah, David seduces Bathsheba, & causes the death of her husband Uriah the Hittite. In response, Nathan prophesies the punishment that shall fall upon him: “the sword shall never depart from your house.” In fulfillment of these words David’s son Absalom rebels. The rebellion ends at the battle of the Wood of Ephraim. Absalom’s forces are routed, & Absalom is caught by his long hair in the branches of a tree, & killed by Joab, contrary to David’s order. Joab was the commander of David’s army. He laments the death of his favorite son: “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you”. When David is old & bedridden, Adonijah, his eldest surviving son & natural heir, declares himself king. Bathsheba & Nathan go to David & obtain his agreement to crown Bathsheba’s son Solomon as king, according to David’s earlier promise, & the revolt of Adonijah is put down. David dies at the age of 70 after reigning 40 years, & on his deathbed counsels Solomon to walk in the ways of God

1170 – Deathday of Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, assassinated inside Canterbury Cathedral by followers of King Henry II

1809 – Birthday of William Gladstone, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

1835 – The Treaty of New Echota is signed by the United States, taking back all the lands of the Cherokee east of the Mississippi River.  The ‘treaty’ was not approved by the Cherokee National Council nor signed by Principal Chief John Ross, & yet it became the legal basis for the forced removal known as the Trail of Tears

 1890 – Wounded Knee Massacre on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, 300 Lakota killed by the United States 7th Cavalry Regiment

1890 – Deathday of Spotted Elk (Lakota: OH-PONG-GE-LE-SKAH) highly renowned chief of the Miniconjou, Lakota Sioux. He was killed by the US Army at Wounded Knee Creek, Pine Ridge Indian Reservation South Dakota, with at least 250 members of his tribe

Leonid Pasternak 1928

1926 – Deathday of Rainer Maria Rilke, a Bohemian-Austrian poet & novelist,

1972 – Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 crashes on approach to Miami International Airport, Florida, killing 101

1975 – Bomb Explodes at LaGuardia Airport in New York City, killing 111 people & injuring 74

 

1989 – Czech writer, philosopher & dissident Václav Havel is elected the first post-communist President of Czechoslovakia. Havel first rose to prominence within the Prague theater world as a playwright. He used the absurdist style to critique communism. After participating in Prague Spring & being blacklisted he became more politically active & helped found several dissident initiatives such as the Committee for the Defense of the Unjustly Prosecuted. His political activities brought him under the surveillance of the secret police & he spent multiple stints in prison, the longest being nearly four years. Havel’s Civic Forum party played a major role in the Velvet Revolution that toppled communism in Czechoslovakia in 1989. He assumed the presidency & was reelected in a landslide the following year. Havel was instrumental in dismantling the Warsaw Pact & expanding NATO membership eastward. He was very controversial, granting general amnesty to all those imprisoned under communism. Havel’s political philosophy was one of anti-consumerism, humanitarianism, environmentalism, civil activism, & direct democracy. He supported the Czech Green Party from 2004 until his death. He received numerous accolades during his lifetime including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Gandhi Peace Prize, the Philadelphia Liberty Medal, the Order of Canada, the Four Freedoms Award, the Ambassador of Conscience Award,& others. He is considered by some to be one of the most important intellectuals of the 20th century. The International airport in Prague was renamed to Václav Havel Airport Prague in 2012

1997 – Hong Kong begins to kill all the nation’s 1.25 million chickens to stop the spread of the potentially deadly ‘bird flu’.

1998 – Leaders of the Khmer Rouge apologize for the 1970s genocide in Cambodia that claimed over one million lives

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6th Holy Night:  Constellation of Libra, Scales (ruling the kidneys & lumbar region) The Sphere of the Dynamis, Spirits of Movement, Virtues or Mights 

♈ ARIES
♉ TAURUS
♊ GEMINI
♋ CANCER
♌ LEO
♍ VIRGO

LIBRA

♏ SCORPIUS
♐ SAGITTARIUS
♑ CAPRICORN
♒ AQUARIUS
♓ PISCES

In Libra we come to the center of the Zodiac, the balance between the below -the lower signs which we have just traversed, considered the ‘dark signs’ where humanity still needs work; & the above – the upper zodiac, referred to as the ascended signs, where we are headed in our evolution.

From the Sphere of the Dynamis, the Spirits of Movement, dwelling in the Sun, bring the entire solar system into a state of mutual equilibrium. The reciprocal balance of the individual planets under their guidance finds a living expression in what Pythagoras called the ‘Music of the Spheres’, which reigns in the cosmos. On Earth they work from the periphery to balance the forces of the Thrones raying out from the center of the Earth, giving us such beautifully diverse landscapes.

These forces began to manifest on Old Moon, when the job of the Sprits of Movement was to bring a right relationship to the bodies of the Sun & Moon, which had separated from each other, creating a position in the cosmos that resembled a giant pair of scales needing to be balanced.

When The Christ Being made his descent thru the Constellation of the Scales, the 3rd pre-earthly deed was accomplished, counteracting the threat in the thinking life, to redeem the human astral body (thinking, feeling, & willing). If Christ had not sacrificed his own perfected Astral Body or Spirit-Self, uniting once again with the Nathan Soul, the human Ego would not have been able to come thru, & a balance between these 3 soul forces would have been broken, creating a separation into 3 races of human being: Thinking would have manifested in a type of Eagle-human; Feeling into a Lion-type; & Willing in a Bull-like human; creating in the astral body a dragon-like nature.

This sacrifice made it possible for the Dynamis to advance, evolving upwards into the ascending aspect of the Zodiac. Humanity will also advance when we take our thinking to the next level, in freedom. This is possible when we open to the opportunities availed us thru the Christ-Impulse, the work of Michael, our current Time Spirit, & our connection to Anthroposophia.

Today as I endeavor to stand in balance with my thinking, I am indebted to our devoted community of Anthroposohers, brought together thru our beloved teacher Dr. Rudolf Steiner. Let us seek to bring the highest evolution to bear.

Until Soon

Xox  ~Hazel Archer Ginsberg

Jan de Kok

Virtue: Contentment Becomes Self-Composure

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Current Festival Events