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Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Sun Oct 03, 2021 7:32 am
by Anthony66
Ashvin,

No I haven't bailed :) I've been reading all the comments on here while continuing with PoF. I'm trying to really understand PoF by taking notes and re-reading sometimes entire chapters. I'm into part 2 now.

One thing I'm still grappling with is this section from Steiner near the end of chapter 5:
What, then is a percept? The question, asked in this general way, is absurd. A percept emerges always as something perfectly definite, as a concrete content. This content is directly given and is completely contained in what is given. The only question one can ask concerning the given content is what it is apart from perception, that is, what it is for thinking?
I feel like I've missed something fundamental. Surely to ask what is a percept is an entirely reasonable question. Is a percept grounded in the ideations of M@L, akin to how BK understands things?

In relation to what you have written above: "precisely through the forms that we come to deeply know the formless", there would be the charge by those (like Rupert Spira) who advocate the "direct path" that one doesn't need to go through the forms to arrive at the ultimate prize, one can go straight (and perhaps more efficiently) to the formless I. How would you respond to that?

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Sun Oct 03, 2021 1:14 pm
by AshvinP
Anthony66 wrote: Sun Oct 03, 2021 7:32 am Ashvin,

No I haven't bailed :) I've been reading all the comments on here while continuing with PoF. I'm trying to really understand PoF by taking notes and re-reading sometimes entire chapters. I'm into part 2 now.

One thing I'm still grappling with is this section from Steiner near the end of chapter 5:
What, then is a percept? The question, asked in this general way, is absurd. A percept emerges always as something perfectly definite, as a concrete content. This content is directly given and is completely contained in what is given. The only question one can ask concerning the given content is what it is apart from perception, that is, what it is for thinking?
I feel like I've missed something fundamental. Surely to ask what is a percept is an entirely reasonable question. Is a percept grounded in the ideations of M@L, akin to how BK understands things?

In relation to what you have written above: "precisely through the forms that we come to deeply know the formless", there would be the charge by those (like Rupert Spira) who advocate the "direct path" that one doesn't need to go through the forms to arrive at the ultimate prize, one can go straight (and perhaps more efficiently) to the formless I. How would you respond to that?

Anthony,

Very good work! A deep understanding of PoF will prove invaluable to all spiritual scientific inquiries.

Steiner in that quote is distinguishing between the bare sense-percept, let's say a "tree", and all meaningful qualities of the the tree discerned by thinking. The Kantian or Schop idealist, i.e. "illusionist", ignores this thinking-sense and then claims the bare percepts as mental images cannot possibly inform us of whatever lays behind the percepts. They create an artificial dualism between percept (object) and concept (subject) to arrive at this conclusion, or rather fail to perceive this inherited dualism already working in their thought. Steiner says no such bare percept exists, because it is always interlaced with thought. For ex, the thought that "there is something behind this percept which I do not see". If we admit the possibility this thought is directing us towards what is behind the percept, i.e. it is an essential aspect of the phenomena perceived, which is the basis of all philosophy and science (despite us always forgetting it), i.e. it is why we do philosophy and science, then the "illusionist" position is inccoherent. It presupposes an aspect of the perceived phenomena, the thought "this is my mental image", which it declares to be real, i.e. not illusion, but already reflecting something about the reality behind the percept. Does that make sense? I just woke up, so if that's as incoherent as I suspect it may sound, I can expand as my more living thoughts incarnate!

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Sun Oct 03, 2021 1:18 pm
by AshvinP
Anthony66 wrote: Sun Oct 03, 2021 7:32 am Ashvin,

No I haven't bailed :) I've been reading all the comments on here while continuing with PoF. I'm trying to really understand PoF by taking notes and re-reading sometimes entire chapters. I'm into part 2 now.

One thing I'm still grappling with is this section from Steiner near the end of chapter 5:
What, then is a percept? The question, asked in this general way, is absurd. A percept emerges always as something perfectly definite, as a concrete content. This content is directly given and is completely contained in what is given. The only question one can ask concerning the given content is what it is apart from perception, that is, what it is for thinking?
I feel like I've missed something fundamental. Surely to ask what is a percept is an entirely reasonable question. Is a percept grounded in the ideations of M@L, akin to how BK understands things?

In relation to what you have written above: "precisely through the forms that we come to deeply know the formless", there would be the charge by those (like Rupert Spira) who advocate the "direct path" that one doesn't need to go through the forms to arrive at the ultimate prize, one can go straight (and perhaps more efficiently) to the formless I. How would you respond to that?

In response to Spira, I will quote Cleric:
Cleric wrote:Let me put this way. The principle that we must exercise our spiritual activity in order to become conscious of the spiritual environment holds true on all levels. I guess this is pretty understandable from the examples of smoking and concentration, even for people with no experience in spiritual practices. The interesting stuff happens once the quietness and serenity of soul is achieved. It is at this point where one becomes, for example, spiritual teacher like, say, Rupert Spira. One has attained to the grounds of Consciousness and he now can give Light to other souls, so that they can also achieve mastery and then peace and immensity.

At this stage it already makes real difference if one will continue to work with focused spiritual activity because in this case we are really on our way to the higher worlds.

It is not true that once we attain to peace, serenity, Love, joy, we have already done our job. Just as with smoking and concentration, if we continue with concentration of the spirit - the Universal Creative - we soon find out that even in these states of quiet and blissful contemplation, seemingly completely free of egoic elements, we're still flowing along certain, admittedly, higher order currents. But they are still currents. And as any other, we need to differentiate from them in order to become conscious of them. In the sea of serenity we no longer have any means to become conscious of these currents because we have cleared out all sources of noise and distractions. We're completely at one with the blissful flow of Consciousness. And this is precisely the issue. Unless we find a form of even higher order spiritual activity, we can never become conscious that this blissful flow is only one of the many more layers of the Worlds within which we are embedded.

When we continue our active concentration, even when in the midst of stillness and serenity, our discoveries continue. Just as our ordinary concentration becomes, in a sense, an organ for perception for all these things that work against our spiritual intent, so through the sustained concentration of our creative spiritual being we begin to feel that even our tendency to free flow in complete bliss on the sea of serenity, is something that drags us along and as such we're not conscious of it. Gradually, this tendency becomes more and more clearly perceptible for us and rises against us as an actual being. This being has been known in all genuine esoteric schools and is commonly called The Guardian at the Threshold. This is no other but our actual self, within which we have been embedded even when in complete serenity and without perceptible traces of egoic structures.

This is probably the greatest insult for a mystic - to dare and state that at the stage that they value the highest, complete mystical union with the flow of Cosmic Consciousness, they don't really overcome the self - it's simply that all traceable perceptions of it have been completely smoothed out and now the reality of the ego has simply spread out and merged quietly and imperceptibly with the Cosmic background, so to speak. If what we speak here is understood, it will be clear that we have absolutely no means to distinguish this completely laminar and blissful ego from the general environment. The only way to distinguish it is if we come to know ourselves as a spiritual being active at an even higher level of consciousness, against which the chameleon ego becomes once again visible as the Guardian at the Threshold.

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 1:21 am
by AshvinP
AshvinP wrote: Sun Oct 03, 2021 1:14 pm
Anthony66 wrote: Sun Oct 03, 2021 7:32 am One thing I'm still grappling with is this section from Steiner near the end of chapter 5:
What, then is a percept? The question, asked in this general way, is absurd. A percept emerges always as something perfectly definite, as a concrete content. This content is directly given and is completely contained in what is given. The only question one can ask concerning the given content is what it is apart from perception, that is, what it is for thinking?
I feel like I've missed something fundamental. Surely to ask what is a percept is an entirely reasonable question. Is a percept grounded in the ideations of M@L, akin to how BK understands things?
Steiner in that quote is distinguishing between the bare sense-percept, let's say a "tree", and all meaningful qualities of the the tree discerned by thinking. The Kantian or Schop idealist, i.e. "illusionist", ignores this thinking-sense and then claims the bare percepts as mental images cannot possibly inform us of whatever lays behind the percepts. They create an artificial dualism between percept (object) and concept (subject) to arrive at this conclusion, or rather fail to perceive this inherited dualism already working in their thought. Steiner says no such bare percept exists, because it is always interlaced with thought. For ex, the thought that "there is something behind this percept which I do not see". If we admit the possibility this thought is directing us towards what is behind the percept, i.e. it is an essential aspect of the phenomena perceived, which is the basis of all philosophy and science (despite us always forgetting it), i.e. it is why we do philosophy and science, then the "illusionist" position is inccoherent. It presupposes an aspect of the perceived phenomena, the thought "this is my mental image", which it declares to be real, i.e. not illusion, but already reflecting something about the reality behind the percept. Does that make sense? I just woke up, so if that's as incoherent as I suspect it may sound, I can expand as my more living thoughts incarnate!

To make the above more clear - let's consider your question, "is a percept grounded in the ideations of M@L?". When you ask this question, you already have a mental image (thought) of "ideations of M@L" as some reality distinct from the percepts. That mental image (thought) is presupposed in the question and the question is only meaningful if it is a mental image reflecting a reality of "ideation of MAL which grounds the percepts", i.e. the mental image is not an "illusion", or part of "the story the meta-cognitive alter tells itself", in more BK parlance. This same exact logic applies to all questions about percepts in the world, which is the basis of any knowing inquiry in philosophy, science, etc. If that is admitted, then the "critical idealist" or "illusionist" position falls apart completely. It is a really simple fact, as you say "something fundamental", which is nevertheless so easy to miss, and you are in good company because Schop, BK, and many other brilliant philosophers have missed it. I would have never thought to consider it until after reading PoF.

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 3:47 am
by Anthony66
AshvinP wrote: Sun Oct 03, 2021 1:14 pm
Anthony66 wrote: Sun Oct 03, 2021 7:32 am Ashvin,

No I haven't bailed :) I've been reading all the comments on here while continuing with PoF. I'm trying to really understand PoF by taking notes and re-reading sometimes entire chapters. I'm into part 2 now.

One thing I'm still grappling with is this section from Steiner near the end of chapter 5:
What, then is a percept? The question, asked in this general way, is absurd. A percept emerges always as something perfectly definite, as a concrete content. This content is directly given and is completely contained in what is given. The only question one can ask concerning the given content is what it is apart from perception, that is, what it is for thinking?
I feel like I've missed something fundamental. Surely to ask what is a percept is an entirely reasonable question. Is a percept grounded in the ideations of M@L, akin to how BK understands things?

In relation to what you have written above: "precisely through the forms that we come to deeply know the formless", there would be the charge by those (like Rupert Spira) who advocate the "direct path" that one doesn't need to go through the forms to arrive at the ultimate prize, one can go straight (and perhaps more efficiently) to the formless I. How would you respond to that?

Anthony,

Very good work! A deep understanding of PoF will prove invaluable to all spiritual scientific inquiries.

Steiner in that quote is distinguishing between the bare sense-percept, let's say a "tree", and all meaningful qualities of the the tree discerned by thinking. The Kantian or Schop idealist, i.e. "illusionist", ignores this thinking-sense and then claims the bare percepts as mental images cannot possibly inform us of whatever lays behind the percepts. They create an artificial dualism between percept (object) and concept (subject) to arrive at this conclusion, or rather fail to perceive this inherited dualism already working in their thought. Steiner says no such bare percept exists, because it is always interlaced with thought. For ex, the thought that "there is something behind this percept which I do not see". If we admit the possibility this thought is directing us towards what is behind the percept, i.e. it is an essential aspect of the phenomena perceived, which is the basis of all philosophy and science (despite us always forgetting it), i.e. it is why we do philosophy and science, then the "illusionist" position is inccoherent. It presupposes an aspect of the perceived phenomena, the thought "this is my mental image", which it declares to be real, i.e. not illusion, but already reflecting something about the reality behind the percept. Does that make sense? I just woke up, so if that's as incoherent as I suspect it may sound, I can expand as my more living thoughts incarnate!
Is Steiner saying percepts in and of themselves are pure givens, and it is only with the attendant thinking that we can infer their nature? In other words, one doesn't import any presuppositions about their nature. If that is so, how does Steiner understand percepts after the operation of thinking? Do they correspond to BK's ideations of M@L?

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 4:22 am
by AshvinP
Anthony66 wrote: Mon Oct 04, 2021 3:47 am Is Steiner saying percepts in and of themselves are pure givens, and it is only with the attendant thinking that we can infer their nature? In other words, one doesn't import any presuppositions about their nature. If that is so, how does Steiner understand percepts after the operation of thinking? Do they correspond to BK's ideations of M@L?

What he is saying in that particular portion of the text is as I describe it above. He is basically pointing out flaws of the "idealist" philosophies in the Kantian tradition which consider the phenomenal world and its meaning as a sort of "dream world" which we can never awake from (until presumably after physical death, but then cognition is no longer possible for them). In that portion, Steiner is not asserting anything about the underlying nature of the percepts or "MAL", although he may have already mentioned prior that thinking is what weaves us into the Center of the Cosmos from our point way out on the 'periphery'.

Steiner wrote:In thinking, we have that element given us which welds our separate individuality into one whole with the cosmos. In so far as we sense and feel (and also perceive), we are single beings; in so far as we think, we are the all-one being that pervades everything. This is the deeper meaning of our two-sided nature: We see coming into being in us a force complete and absolute in itself, a force which is universal but which we learn to know, not as it issues from the center of the world, but rather at a point in the periphery. Were we to know it at its source, we should understand the whole riddle of the universe the moment we became conscious. But since we stand at a point in the periphery, and find that our own existence is bounded by definite limits, we must explore the region which lies outside our own being with the help of thinking, which projects into us from the universal world existence.

Apart from PoF entirely, Steiner's position is not in accord with BK's on "MAL". For one thing, BK's position of MAL is just a vague abstract concept of some "instinctive" mental stuff which has evolved "meta-cognition" through its "alters". What does any of that really mean? How is it "instinctive" - like a crocodile we observe in nature, like a human infant, like something we cannot really imagine? What is "meta-cognition" - is it only abstract repreesentational thinking? does it encompass non-representational thinking like imaginative or intuitive? Is it a term used to denote a relative perspective (i.e. our infant self was not "meta-cognitive" from our current perspective, but we are also not "meta-cognitive" from a more integrated perspective)? What is "MAL" and "alters"? MAL is just as abstract as "God", which can mean a million different things to a million different people, and "alters" are just a symbol for a "living being", whatever those happen to be. When we reflect on these abstractions with the living thinking that Steiner is pointing us towards in PoF, we see how little concrete meaning they convey to us.

Steiner is interested in approaching the spiritual realms as we would approach any other scientific inquiry - with patience, discipline, impartiality, and precise systematic Thinking. I suppose you know that the results of his own spiritual scientific research point to realms with living spiritual beings who give rise to the phenomenal relations in the physical plane, including our own inner desires, feelings, and thoughts. I also hold Jung sensed this spiritual structure was the case for his "collective unconscious" as well. BK once said he "agreed with everything Jung has written", but if that is true then it seems he just tuned out all of the spiritual stuff. Or, maybe he has actually come around to a more spiritual view lately, although I have not seen that reflected in any interviews or articles so far. So, in general, without any further information, I would say no, Steiner's SS view does not correspond with BK's view at all.

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 11:54 am
by Cleric K
Anthony66 wrote: Mon Oct 04, 2021 3:47 am Is Steiner saying percepts in and of themselves are pure givens, and it is only with the attendant thinking that we can infer their nature? In other words, one doesn't import any presuppositions about their nature. If that is so, how does Steiner understand percepts after the operation of thinking? Do they correspond to BK's ideations of M@L?
I'll add something to what Ashvin already said.

One way to think about it, is that perceptions are like the negative picture of ideas (knowing, meaning). In other words, everywhere we perceive something, we have absence, vacuum of ideas. We need to really stir our Imagination here. We can practically imagine how perceptions exercise a specific kind of suction on our thinking being. It's like perceptions are vacuum sinks that try to suck out the ideal thinking element which will fill the voids. The more the ideal element flows into the voids, the more the balance is restored.

Imagine a perception of a rectangle. It exercises the mentioned suction on our spiritual being. The act of thinking is like flowing our spiritual essence into the void that sucks us in. When we fill it, our essential being ('made of' meaning/knowing/idea) assumes the shape of that void and we experience it from within - that is, we experience the meaning of the concept of rectangle. In this way, the answer to the question "what happens with percepts after the act of thinking" would be that they no longer exist. Our meaningful essence has filled them and assumed their 'shape' which we experience as knowing from within.

To this it might be objected that after we think about the rectangle, even though we experience the concept of it, we still see it quite clearly - the visual stimuli don't at all disappear! The solution to this riddle is that perceptions are very compound.

Some time ago, in another context I gave an example to findingblanks with thinking about a pencil. You may want to take a look at it.

In short, we may say "I look at the pencil but even after I experience the meaning of 'pencil', the perception is still there. If I have filled the perception-void with the concept, why is the perception still there?" The reason is that there are in fact infinite number of ideas that are being sucked in through the visual perception. The concept of 'pencil' is only one of them. So the visual perception really exercises the suction of all possible ideas, like wood, yellow, paint, graphite, peeled, hexagonal, etc. and of course - pencil. 'Pencil' is only one of them and when we flow our thinking essence into this void it really is filled - yet all other infinity-minus-one voids remain and the perception invites us to fill them with meaning too.

This process takes much more complete form when we observe thinking. Our thoughts-forms are also perceptions filled in with our thinking essence. In fact, it is our active essence that gives the shape of the already filled voids of thought-forms. But if this is the case, if thought-forms were voids shaped exactly as our meaning, why do we still perceive them? There shouldn't be any perception of them, as it should have been perfectly filled with meaning?

The reason we can at all speak of thought-perceptions is because even though we think actively and create the primary void filled with the meaning projected in it, this void is part of a more general environment and its 'surface' can never be completely perfect.

Let's try to clarify this. Let's imagine ourselves in a Godly state, where there's nothing but our innerly experienced Cosmic Spirit. If at that stage we were to think the thought 'circle', our spirit would assume the 'shape' of the meaning of 'circle'. Our whole reality would consists of the meaning of 'circle' - there would be no need for thought-perception of it, because we experience the perfect meaning of it - our spirit is one and the same with the idea, the meaningful quality of 'circleness' through and through. There's nothing that a perception could add to the idea that we experience as the entire meaning of our Divinity. In fact, if there was a perception of 'circle' this would immediately mean that there's also a question to be asked. If we have a perception in our Divine mind then this means that there's at least one more idea present - the idea of perception. In the first state, our whole Universe was made of the meaning of 'circle'. Now in addition to that, we experience also the idea of 'reflection', something which I have thrust out of myself in order to symbolize the meaning of 'circle' which was previously my complete reality. In certain sense I must suck out (not in) my own spiritual essence and create a void shaped as circle. If we fill it completely with our spiritual essence everything becomes the invisible meaning of 'circle' again. But we don't allow this to happen. We resist the suction and we keep the void open. Now this void exists for our Divine being similarly to the pencil. We can now experience many other ideas in relation to it. In certain sense the void tries to suck in from our meaningful essence an infinity of possible ideas that can try to approximate its shape (every idea except 'circle', which would close the void perfectly). For example, we can try to fill the void with meaningful essence in the shape of a 'hexagon'. It's like saying: "this thing (we can't address it with its real concept because that would immediately fill the void perfectly and the perception would vanish) looks to me like a hexagon." The void sucks in our ideal nature into itself and we assume the meaning-shape of a hexagon. Yet, just like the pencil, the perception doesn't completely disappear because the idea that we experience is not a perfect fit. The hexagon fills the circle but there are six sectors of the circle that remain:
Image
Now these sectors will continue to exercise suction on our essential being, which would suggest infinity of other shapes of meaning that could fill the sectors. If we imagine this process even further we can picture how a whole Universe of perceptions and meaning can sprout forth.

Now please don't take this as the literal mechanism of Creation. It is true that the above analogy contains something fundamentally essential, something which in the past was known only by Initiates in the deepest secrecy of the Mystery schools, but there are so many, many, many more things to be known for this to become true knowledge.

So in the light of the above we can glimpse at the mystery of idea and perception and also why even our own thoughts are not perfect mirrors of meaning. We do fill voids with the concepts of our human thinking but they don't fit the voids perfectly, there are 'sectors' left and that's why we perceive our thoughts. The thought perceptions basically tell us "we, your thought perceptions, exist only because the meaning that you think doesn't yet fit the Divine Cosmos perfectly. We stand here as 'cut out sectors' testimony that you must keep refining your spiritual essence, such that it can assume better and better the true shape of the Cosmos, with less and less 'sectors' being left out.

It should be noted that this holds true even for simple qualities as, say, 'red'. Even if we imagine that our human consciousness was filled entirely with pure perception of red, when we fill the void with our intellectual concept of 'red', this wouldn't make the redness disappear. The reason is that our intellectual concept of red is very imperfect fit for the red void that tries to suck in our human spirit. It is in fact possible that we reach the point where color is filled nearly perfectly with meaning and practically the perception ceases to exist. This is achievable only through the highest form of cognition - Intuitive consciousness - where we live in color as in a Cosmic Being - we live and experience reality from the meaningful perspective of a Divine being, whose shadow in our human state we perceive simply as the quality of color. The more this Divine perspective becomes a perception, the more it means that the ideal essence through which we try to fill the perceptual voids is imperfect and there's a lot left out, which continues to remind us: "I, the color perception, continue to stand in front of you because your concept of color doesn't yet capture my true essence. Only in the highest of worlds, you're free enough from your human form, such that you can assume the shape of the Divine spiritual essence that can fill me completely, and then you'll know my Divinity from the inside."

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 1:54 pm
by AshvinP
Cleric K wrote: Mon Oct 04, 2021 11:54 am It should be noted that this holds true even for simple qualities as, say, 'red'. Even if we imagine that our human consciousness was filled entirely with pure perception of red, when we fill the void with our intellectual concept of 'red', this wouldn't make the redness disappear. The reason is that our intellectual concept of red is very imperfect fit for the red void that tries to suck in our human spirit. It is in fact possible that we reach the point where color is filled nearly perfectly with meaning and practically the perception ceases to exist. This is achievable only through the highest form of cognition - Intuitive consciousness - where we live in color as in a Cosmic Being - we live and experience reality from the meaningful perspective of a Divine being, whose shadow in our human state we perceive simply as the quality of color. The more this Divine perspective becomes a perception, the more it means that the ideal essence through which we try to fill the perceptual voids is imperfect and there's a lot left out, which continues to remind us: "I, the color perception, continue to stand in front of you because your concept of color doesn't yet capture my true essence. Only in the highest of worlds, you're free enough from your human form, such that you can assume the shape of the Divine spiritual essence that can fill me completely, and then you'll know my Divinity from the inside."

Simply amazing, Cleric, thank you!

1 - I hope it as clear to others as it is to me that what is written above by Cleric is not the sort of concrete explanation for perceptions you find anywhere else in standard philosophy. How it is a living explanation and not a dead one (for the record, I put my own explanations in the mostly "dead" category for now). In the modern age, intellect really flips these things upside-down. Some may read the above and feel it is "abstract" (or "weird" and "strange") while the concept of "the percepts are the meta-cognitive alter's dream world" feels more concrete to the modern intellect. This is a major bad habit we need to break. I can say it definitely gets easier with time and, eventually, we start to wonder, "how could I have ever thought about all of philosophy and science in that upside-down way??".

2 - Cleric has just pointed to a fundamental aspect of the [qualitatively meaningful] explanation for our in-breathing (suck in) and out-breathing (suck out) process. Of course it is not the whole image with all the details, but it goes further than any physicalist (or idealist who adopts physicalist) explanation for what is actually happening with our respiration. For metaphysical idealism, the fact that real explanations are the qualitatively meaningful ones should come as no surprise. And even a major aspect of the explanation for why we blindly follow the physicalist explanation is implied within his simple illustration - we are filling the void of "respiration" with abstract concepts which give the illusion they fit the void perfectly or near perfectly, so there is no more need to continue asking questions and fill the void with concrete meaningful ideas.

3 - From my perspective, what was written is pretty advanced conception of what is going on. From Cleric's perspective, that is the most basic a, b, c. So we should be clear that these sort of imaginative explanations for the world we live in are only some of the first fruits for the spiritual scientific path. If anyone feels this is "evangelizing", then they should remember that 99.999% of spiritual scientific claims are never mentioned on this forum and probably never will be. That is because what is most important are not the specific claims, but that we find the cognitive tools to discover the explanations for ourselves from within, out of the infinite strength of our own Thinking activity. That is what PoF is all about and why Steiner felt it was the most important of all his works.

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 6:24 pm
by Lou Gold
Cleric K wrote: Mon Oct 04, 2021 11:54 am It should be noted that this holds true even for simple qualities as, say, 'red'. Even if we imagine that our human consciousness was filled entirely with pure perception of red, when we fill the void with our intellectual concept of 'red', this wouldn't make the redness disappear. The reason is that our intellectual concept of red is very imperfect fit for the red void that tries to suck in our human spirit. It is in fact possible that we reach the point where color is filled nearly perfectly with meaning and practically the perception ceases to exist. This is achievable only through the highest form of cognition - Intuitive consciousness - where we live in color as in a Cosmic Being - we live and experience reality from the meaningful perspective of a Divine being, whose shadow in our human state we perceive simply as the quality of color. The more this Divine perspective becomes a perception, the more it means that the ideal essence through which we try to fill the perceptual voids is imperfect and there's a lot left out, which continues to remind us: "I, the color perception, continue to stand in front of you because your concept of color doesn't yet capture my true essence. Only in the highest of worlds, you're free enough from your human form, such that you can assume the shape of the Divine spiritual essence that can fill me completely, and then you'll know my Divinity from the inside."
I appreciate this view, Cleric. It evoked in me thoughts of the artwork of Mark Rothko. There's both agony and ecstasy in the artistic quest, which also can provide a rich meditative experience for the viewer. Oscar Wilde noted, "Mere color, unspoiled by meaning, and unallied with definite form, can speak to the soul in a thousand different ways." Perhaps, the knowing of Divinity from the inside is what drives onward and outward the evolution of art -- the making of a painting, a poem, a melody, a philosophy, a technology, etc -- and makes perfection an ongoing evolutionary process.

Image

Re: Anthroposophy for Dummies

Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2021 9:09 pm
by Cleric K
Lou Gold wrote: Mon Oct 04, 2021 6:24 pm Perhaps, the knowing of Divinity from the inside is what drives onward and outward the evolution of art -- the making of a painting, a poem, a melody, a philosophy, a technology, etc -- and makes perfection an ongoing evolutionary process.
Yes Lou,
and things go on a whole new level when we begin to understand that we ourselves - individually, collectively, planetarily, Cosmically - are an artwork in the making. Up to this point, Nature has brought us to self-consciousness. From now on we must become free co-artists and co-creators, such that we fully consciously partake in the Divine artwork, and such that the Divinity concealed in Nature, and which is our innermost spiritual essence, can be expressed more and more fully through our thoughts, feelings and deeds.