oracle-sanctuary

Oracle-sanctuary of Special Importance

“There was one oracle-sanctuary of special importance, which in the universal decline had preserved the ancient cult in its purest form. It was one of the Christ oracles; and on that account it was able to preserve not only the Christ Mystery itself but those of the other oracles as well. For in the manifestation of the loftiest of the Sun-spirits, were also revealed the regents of Saturn, Jupiter, and the other planets. In the Sun oracle the secrets of producing in some particular human being such human etheric bodies as had been possessed by the best of the Jupiter, Mercury, and other Initiates were known. By means of the methods used for this purpose, which cannot be further dealt with here, impressions of the best etheric bodies of the ancient Initiates were preserved in order that they might subsequently be stamped upon suitable individuals. The same process could be employed with the astral bodies of the Venus, Mercury, and Vulcan Initiates.

“At a certain time, the Leader of the Christ Initiates found himself isolated with a few associates, to whom he was able to impart, to a very limited extent only, the mysteries of the cosmos. For those individuals were endowed with the natural ability to permit the least possible degree of separation between the physical and etheric bodies. They were altogether, at that time, the best possible individuals for promoting the further progress of humanity.” ~Rudolf Steiner

Oracle-sanctuary

An oracle-sanctuary may be an ancient mystery school, a spiritual school, or a place where oracles gave predictions, such as the Oracle of Delphi in ancient Greece. It would be a sanctuary if it was a safe place for mystics and oracle to practice their spiritual arts and sciences in peace, and give predictions without interference. They might also take in gifted children who were orphans or were sent by their parents because they were weird. In some cases, the parents wanted them to truly learn the divine arts, in other, they just wanted to be rid of their strange offspring.

Various religions and philosophies had an oracle-sanctuary, sometimes several. Today, probably the closest thing we have to them is some remote monasteries for monks. Most modern spiritual schools are not really sanctuaries and students are often forced to hide their membership in them for fear of losing their jobs in a materialistic world.

The term “Sanctuary” is often thought of as a refuge from the materialistic world, but it has another meaning. It is also the holiest part of a temple or church. So an oracle-sanctuary could be either of those and is usually both.

Christ Oracles

“Christ Oracles” and “Christian Oracles” doesn’t mean the same thing, so it is not clear which Steiner means here. A Christ oracle is an oracle who follows the Way of Christ and is developing his own inner Christ, while a conventional Christian oracle is any oracle that belongs to the Christian faith. But as Steiner is a spiritual teacher, I will assume he means a true Christ oracle who is trying to be one with the Christ spirit and follow the teachings of Christ as given by Jesus is secret to his apostles and closest disciples, but never shared in public or put into writing.

True Christ Oracles could, in fact, belong to any faith. The ancient Greek oracles were, in some cases, Christ oracles. They were not Christians, but they followed the Way of Christ nonetheless. And they sought to help people develop their own spiritual faculties, not to control them as so many Christian churches do.

Christ Mystery

The real teachings of Christ were a mystery, and for the most part, still are. Some were passed on to spiritual schools, primarily the Christian Gnostic schools, many of which had an oracle-sanctuary or two. The more conventional Christian churches, who can only honestly trace their beginning back to St. Paul, not St. Peter or Jesus, know little of those mysteries,

gold sun

Monstrance By LaRedCultural – Own work

although hints of it remain such as in the use of a monstrance to hold the host in some of them. This is quite clearly a solar symbol.

The Sun Oracle

The Sun Oracle was always the highest oracle-sanctuary. When you consider the structure of the solar system, the sun is greater than Venus, Jupiter, or even earth, so the sun oracle is greater than any planetary oracles. Most of the well-known oracles were sun oracles, even if they were thought to be worshippers of some pagan god. Secretly, they all knew the source of spiritual power and energy, the spark that awakens the sleeping soul, came from the Spiritual Sun. And the only oracle-sanctuary we need to turn to for help in our spiritual quest is the Spiritual Sun.

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art of spiritual development

The Art of Spiritual Development Throughout History

The Art of Spiritual Development

“When a son of Noah possessed the third part of the world after the Flood, this Art broke into Chaldaea and Persia, and then spread into Egypt. The Art having been found out by the superstitious and idolatrous Greeks, some of them who were wiser than the rest betook themselves to the Chaldeans and Egyptians, so that they might draw the same wisdom from their schools. Since, however, the theological study of the law of Moses did not satisfy them, they trusted to their own peculiar genius, and fell away from the right foundation of those natural secrets and arts. This is evident from their fabulous conceptions, and from their errors respecting the doctrine of Moses. It was the custom of the Egyptians to put forward the traditions of that surpassing wisdom only in enigmatic figures and abstruse histories and terms. This was afterwards followed by Homer with marvelous poetic skill; and Pythagoras was also acquainted with it, seeing that he comprised in his writings many things of the law of Moses and the Old Testament. In like manner, Hippocrates, Thales of Miletus, Anaxagoras, Democritus, and others, did not scruple to fix their minds on the same subject. And yet none of them were practiced in the true Astrology, Geometry, Arithmetic, or Medicine because their pride prevented this, since they would not admit disciples belonging to other nations then their own.” ~Paracelsus

The Art of Spiritual Development in Chaldaea and Persia

The name Paracelsus might make you think that he was an ancient philosopher of Greece himself, but in truth, Paracelsus was a sixteenth-century Alchemist and theologian. Frankly, I think he has some things confused in the passage quoted above, yet I think it is useful as a timeline for how spiritual and mystical truth spread throughout the ancient world.

He starts by informing us that the mystic Art was brought to Chaldea and Persia by a son of Noah, or at least by those traveling with him. He doesn’t explain how this knowledge came to Noah and his sons. I think we can assume, however, that it was the knowledge of Atlantis.

While most intellectuals and academicians of today laugh at the idea that Atlantis ever existed, they do so by ignoring abundant evidence. Specifically, there are ruins in South America, particularly the area that is now Peru, where fantastic ruins are found that go back more than ten thousand years. It is clear that a great civilization once existed there, and is probably the place that Plato called Atlantis.

In any case, mystery schools did get created in Chaldea and Persia that taught the great truths and the path to ultimate Wisdom. Please note that they, like other such schools, did not teach Wisdom, but the path to gaining Wisdom. True Wisdom is never found in a book or scroll. The Art of Spiritual Development was not Wisdom itself, but the methods for awakening and developing the spirit and soul so that they could gain Wisdom by growing to and reaching for higher levels of consciousness where such Wisdom exists. Continue reading “The Art of Spiritual Development Throughout History”

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gives his mind

One Who Gives His Mind to God Achieves Truth

“But he that gives his mind to the law of the most High, and is occupied in the meditation thereof, will seek out the wisdom of all the ancients, and be occupied in prophecies. He will keep the sayings of the renowned men: and where subtle parables are, he will be there also. He will seek out the secrets of grave sentences, and be conversant in dark parables. He shall serve among great men, and appear before princes: he will travel through strange countries; for he hath tried the good and the evil among men. He will give his heart to resort early to the Lord that made him, and will pray before the most High, and will open his mouth in prayer, and make supplication for his sins. When the great Lord will, he shall be filled with the spirit of understanding: he shall pour out wise sentences, and give thanks unto the Lord in his prayer. … Many shall commend his understanding; and so long as the world endureth, it shall not be blotted out; his memorial shall not depart away, and his name shall live from generation to generation. … If he die, he shall leave a greater name than a thousand: and if he live, he shall increase it. … Hearken unto me, ye holy children, and bud forth as a rose growing by the brook of the field: And give ye a sweet savour as frankincense, and flourish as a lily, send forth a smell, and sing a song of praise, bless the Lord in all his works. … All the works of the Lord are exceeding good, and whatsoever he commandeth shall be accomplished in due season.” ~Ecclesiasticus

Gives His Mind

He (or she) that gives his mind to God is a fortunate person. Such people eventually learn the truth and wisdom by doing this. Not the so-called truth that is really the opinions of educated people, but the absolute truth, the truth of God. He seeks the wisdom of the ancients because he knows that is was real Wisdom, the Wisdom of Sophia, the wisdom of God. Again, this wisdom is absolute. Debating it would be pointless since it is not opinion, but indisputable truth. God does not deal in opinions and theories. God knows only truth, God is Truth.

I belong to several “Spiritual” groups on Facebook, and I regularly see individual posting speculative nonsense such as, “What if this is heaven, and when we die we go somewhere worse,” or “What did God doesn’t want obedience, but rebels?” It is not just that such questions are generally quite foolish, and rarely worth responding to, but that it shows these people are not seeking truth at all, but sharing speculations instead. Sad.

Occupied in Meditation

The meditation referred to here is not the kind that has become so popular these days, primarily through the Transcendental Meditation school. This is not about repeating some ancient Sanskrit words that are meaningless to most of us, but about contemplating God, reality, the worlds of spirit, and the Divine Soul. You don’t develop your muscles by ignoring them. Likewise, you don’t develop your soul by ignoring it. Unfortunately, while there are many competent schools and teachers for training the physical body, there are only a few who truly know how to awaken and train the soul. I personally belong to, and recommend Cosolargy as a real spiritual school and not one just taking advantage of a popular fad to make money. To be one who “gives his mind to God” means we have to meditate on God, not on meaningless chants.

Seek the Wisdom of the Ancients

It is a good idea to seek the wisdom of the ancients. Not all ancients are worthy of such seeking, though. It is the adepts of the ancient mystery schools that we should emulate, not the barbarians. We should also not be seeking the wisdom of those ancient schools in books. The books can do little more than send us down the right path. We have to follow that path for some time before we reach the Great Wisdom for ourselves. This wisdom and truth must be experienced by each of us. It is never found in books. Not that there is anything wrong with books. I have written several myself (check the “Shop” menu tab)! But books can only teach so much, then the rest must come from experience.

Serve Among Great Men

There have been times in human history when the spiritually enlightened people, did serve as consultants and advisers to kings, generals, and other powerful leaders. That is not true today, but it could become true tomorrow. And by “tomorrow,” I mean at some future time when things change. Currently, the vast majority of people are so Materialistic and Capitalistic that it is hard for many of us to see much hope for such a change. We need to remember, though, that the simple fact that some of us are recognizing the folly of clinging to these failed philosophies is progress. The one who “gives his mind to God” sees this.

As we continue to develop our spiritual faculties with the help of the Light from the Spiritual Sun, we will see more and more of us rejecting materialism. As horrible as it is in other ways, the coronavirus pandemic may actually help in this regard. As people are forced to stop their normal lives for several weeks, some will realize that the constant running on the treadmill of Capitalism really gets them nowhere except old, sick, and burned out. And usually with barely enough money to live on if they retire. It started out well with businesses being created to serve people, but it has degenerated to people as the slaves of big business. We need to get back to the ways of the ancients and let the awakened rule, or at least advise the rulers.

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nag hammadi

Nag Hammadi Library and the Return of Gnosticism

If the Nag Hammadi texts had not been discovered, it is more than probable that the correct renewal of interest in Gnosticism would not have taken place. There will always be those who do not see eye to eye with mainstream ideas, so it is highly unlikely that Gnostic thought would have died out altogether. However, the texts that were found give new impetus to research into the early Gnostics. …

“The perennial questions of life needed answering. ‘How can a good God ________? What if for instance an A-bomb does destroy” Where do you go when you are dead?’ When this is added to the existence of a new freedom, both financial and moral, there was a need for a different way of thinking. … One of the core beliefs of Gnosticism became more prevalent. The only hope for humanity was to acquire the information it needed so that it could perfect itself and evolve out of its current physical state. … People began to realize that we had let the knowledge of our own Christ Consciousness pass us by.” ~Bernard Simon

Nag Hammadi Library

Almost everyone who has the slightest interest in spiritual matters has heard of the Dead Sea Scrolls, but before the discovery of those scrolls, another important library of ancient Gnostic writings was found: the Nag Hammadi Library. Like the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Nag Hammadi books were found in Egypt in 1945. Some of the books include the Gospel of Thomas and the Gospel of Philip. These and other books found were thought to have been completely destroyed by the orthodox Christian church. They are controversial because they contradict many things commonly believed by Christians at that time, and even today despite this finding. They include, for example, a statement that the belief that Mary, mother of Jesus, was a virgin.

The library is a collection of Coptic translations written about 1,500 years ago of even older documents. This puts them among the oldest copies of these gospels and other scriptural writings. But as Mr. Simon notes, their importance may be that they help reawaken interest in Gnostic teachings which help answer so many of the common questions of Christians and others that are not answered in the Bible. Of course, just as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, you need to understand the allegory used or much of the meaning will be lost.

How Can God

Mr. Simon says that the Nag Hammadi library and other Gnostic literature can answer the common question asked by Christians and others: “How can God ________?”. For example, “How can God allow evil in the world?” and “Why does God create death and disease?”. Those questions, and similar ones, are usually answered in the traditional Christian churches with the vague non-answers, “Who are we to understand God?” or “Who are we to question what God does?” While those answers do make a valid point, they don’t satisfy the curious and leave them disappointed. Gnostic scripture does have an answer, and it isn’t vague. The Gnostic answer is that the True God, the God of Spirit, did not create the physical world of matter. The realm of matter was created by the fallen angels known in Gnostic literature as the Demiurge. While there is some difference between various Gnostic sects and schools, they generally do not talk about the Demiurge as a truly evil being or group of beings, but simply beings who made a bad choice, an egotistical choice. Continue reading “Nag Hammadi Library and the Return of Gnosticism”

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