Spiritual science for unity

Spiritual Science for Wisdom and Unity

“Through occult science man gains the conviction that from a higher standpoint the weal and woe of the individual is intimately bound up with the weal and woe of the whole world. This is a means by which man comes to see that he is inflicting an injury on the entire world and every being within it, if he does not develop his own powers in the right way. If a man makes his life desolate by losing touch with the unseen, he not only destroys in his inner self something, the decay of which may eventually drive him to despair, but through his weakness he constitutes a hindrance to the evolution of the whole world in which he lives. … He may yield to the belief that there is nothing invisible, …but such an illusion is only possible on the surface of consciousness and not in its depths.” ~Rudolf Steiner

Individual and World of Spiritual Science

We live in an age where the individual is emphasized over that of the community and the world as a whole. We allow individuals to have “rights” that conflict with the good of the planet and the people on it. Worse, we have now decided in some places that corporation also have the rights of individuals including the right to force certain religious beliefs on their employees. It should not take much thought or imagination to realize that the ultimate end of this emphasis on individuality will be total chaos.

The other side of the coin is a world where the individual is of little significance. Everything is for the community, the state. This is the world of the ant colony or bee hive. In some ancient times, we lived like that also. In some ways, we still do which seems to be a paradox with our emphasis on individuality and individual rights.

Importance of Community

As Mr. Steiner notes, the individual must be a part of the community and the world. But it is also true that the community must function for the benefit of each individual, not just a privileged few like the queen bee. This is a difficult and delicate balance to achieve.

Doing that is always an important part of spiritual science. It is only possible for the spiritually awakened. Through a knowledge of spiritual science, which Steiner calls occult science, we know how to behave in a way that benefits us as well as the whole world. As part of that, however, we recognize that there may be times when we have to give up our right in order to do what is best for the whole. At other times, the whole may have to allow some individual rights that don’t benefit the world, but only the individuals that occupy it. Balance is the key. Continue reading “Spiritual Science for Wisdom and Unity”

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Individuality is not a Defect

“Ruysbroeck says that the Friends of God (i. e. the interior Men) ‘cannot with themselves and all their works penetrate to that imageless nudity.’ Although they feel united with God, yet they feel in that union an otherness and difference between themselves nd God; and therefore’the assent into the Nought is unknown to them.’ They feel themselves carried up towards God in the tide of His all—subduing Fire of love; but they retain their selfhood, and may not be consumed and burned to nothing in the Unity of Love. …
“We find in Ruysbroeck’s works indications of a transitional state, in which the soul ‘is guided and lost, wonders and returns, ebbs and flows,’ within the ‘limitless nudity,’ to which it has not yet holly surrendered itself.” ~Evelyn Underhill

Individuality as One

It seems that Ms. Underhill, as with many spiritual teachers, believes that the final goal of spiritual development is the loss of all individuality and the complete merging with the Godhead. This is a popular theme in some spiritual writings and spiritual schools. But is that really the ultimate Goal?

If somebody gives you something, it is probably his intention that you use it and not discard it at your earliest convenience. The same is true of the gifts God gives us. One of the greatest of those gifts is individuality. Of course, individuality misused becomes a curse. But used correctly is a great gift.

Consider what we would be like without it. Think of a bee hive where the bees have almost no individuality. The sole purpose of the workers is to care for the queen and the eggs. They don’t get to decide what they want to do. They don’t get to decide which hive they want to be part of. They are what they are born into and will remain so for their entire life. Ants are much the same. Yet even bees and ants have just a hint of individuality or they would be getting in each others way all trying to do the same thing at the same time.

Working Together

Synergy is the ability of two or more beings to work together for the benefit of all. The curious thing about synergy is that it works best when each member of the group has his own responsibilities. Synergy only works with those who are individuals.

My hand is made up of billions of cells. Each cell is an individual. Yet despite that individuality, my hand can function as a whole. And that hand is just one part of my body. It two is an individual of sorts, yet can function as part of the entire body despite that individuality. Our internal organs such as the liver and lungs operate with even more individuality than that hand, yet still function as part of the whole body. Continue reading “Individuality is not a Defect”

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Continuous Wave of Individuals Makes One Whole

“It is known that all matter has a dual nature, both acting as a seemingly solid particle (although never actually quite being solid) and as a wave of energy. …
“Alan Watts, the British philosopher, perhaps said it best when he stated, ‘you and I are as much continuous with the physical universe as a wave is continuous with the ocean.’
“The ocean is a helpful metaphor here, as we can see seemingly different waves, … and yet, can we truly say they are separate? Can we actually define where one wave ends and the rest of the ocean, along with all other waves, begins? … It’s harder to see perhaps when we’re looking at rocks, trees, animals, and humans.” ~Ziad Masri

Matter Duality

We are probably all aware of the dual nature of the worlds of matter. Hot and cold, male and female, light and dark, and so on. At a more fundamental level, matter itself is dual in that it can seem to be either waves of energy or solid particles, depending on the conditions. The key to it, according to modern quantum physics, is observation. A thing is just waves of possibilities until it is observed. Then it seems to solidify and move in certain ways that are predictable and expected.

The real question to ask then is has anything really changed at all? Did the physical wave actually become a solid (ish) particle, or is our brain-mind just filtering out the possibilities and choosing one, thus making it appear to be the new reality? Our minds are shaped to a large degree by what we observe, yet by observing things, we change them with our mind. Whether that change is external or internal really doesn’t matter. As far as we are concerned, it is only our internal impression of things that forms the “real world”.

Continuous Wave

Most people in the world value individuality. They often value it more than being part of any group. Yet most of these individuals are members of various groups, either intentionally or as an accident of birth. We are born in a particular country. We are members of a particular race. We probably are part of some religion through our parents. As we get older, we may switch to a different faith, or lose it completely. In all of these things, we are still members of various groups.

We generally don’t see this group membership as voiding our claim to be an individual. We see it more as if we are an individual link that is part of a chain. Being part of one or many chains doesn’t prevent the link from still existing as an individual link. Yet in truth, few of us can function as complete individuals with no reliance on others. We have to be links in chains, members of groups. Like a continuous wave is an individual, still it is part of the ocean. Continue reading “Continuous Wave of Individuals Makes One Whole”

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Individual Spiritual Awakening and Uniting with God

“Union must be looked upon as the true goal of mystical growth: that permanent establishment of life upon transcendent levels of reality, of which ecstasies give a foretaste to the soul. Intense forms of it, described by individual mystics, under symbols such as those of Mystical Marriage, Deification, or Divine Fecundity, all prove on examination to be aspects of the same experience. …
“Oriental mysticism insists upon a further stage beyond that of union, which stage it regards as the real goal of the spiritual life. This is the total annihilation or reabsorption of the individual soul in the infinite.
“In the mystics of the West, the highest form of Divine union impels the self to some sort of active, rather than of passive life.” ~Evelyn Underhill

Mystical Union

Mystical union with God is the goal of most spiritual schools and spiritual students. They may not call it that. They may call it reaching the highest level of consciousness. Or they may call it universal consciousness. They all mean the same thing. In a way, Gnosis is also another name for this since the only way to achieve true and complete Knowledge is to achieve Unity, at least temporarily. But this union doesn’t mean an end to individuality. Every grain of sand on a beach is still an individual. Every cell in your body remains an individual while being part of the whole body. A pearl necklace is still made of individual pearls. Melting them into one big blob would not improve them in any way.

Union VS Annihilation

Some people thing that this union results in annihilation of the self. Some Oriental religions teach that the stage of annihilation of self is the true goal. These are the ones who teach that the complete destruction of ego is necessary for any significant spiritual growth.

Here in the West, we generally don’t teach annihilation, and Cosolargy is no exception. In fact, we think the ego can be useful when properly controlled.

The ego is the part of us that wants to do things. It is the ego that wants to take action. So if we are to have an active mystical life, we cannot annihilate the ego and become zombie-like sheep. Governments, of course, wish that more of us did annihilate the ego. It makes it so much easier to control. Which is why such Oriental teachings are being encouraged in the West these days. Continue reading “Individual Spiritual Awakening and Uniting with God”

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