THE SON OF GOD and THE SON OF MAN
The Macro and Micro Principles of the Cosmic Christ
THE DOCETIC VISION
It can be said that the principal of Doceticism had its origin in the so-called Apocryphal Gospels/Acts of the Alexandrian gnostics. The Islamic scholar extra-ordinaire, Henry Corbin, begins his treatise on Doceticism and Ismailian Gnosis with a story from the Apocryphal Acts of Peter (sec. XX-XX1). The apostle Peter was describing his experience on the holy mount at the scene of the Transfiguration to a group of people, including several widows, one of whom was blind. Peter says the following.
"Our Lord, willing that I should behold his majesty in the holy mount, I, when I with the sons of Zebedee saw the brightness of his light, fell as one dead and shut mine eyes, and heard such a voice from him as I am not able to describe, and thought myself to be blinded by his brightness. And when I recovered (breathed again) a little I said within myself: Peradventure my Lord hath brought me hither that he might blind me. And I said: If this also be thy will, Lord, I resist not. And he gave me his hand and raised me up; and when I arose I saw him again in such a form as I was able to take in."
Now, the operative words in this experience are "when I arose I saw him again in such a form as I was able to take in."
In another Apocryphal gospel, the Acts of John (sec. 88-89), the brothers James and John were describing the calling of the apostles by Jesus, as follows.
"For when he had chosen Peter and Andrew, which were brethren, he cometh unto me and James my brother, saying: I have need of you, come unto me. And my brother hearing that, said: John, what would this child have that is upon the sea-shore and called us? And I said: What child? And he said to me again: That which beckoneth to us. And I answered: Because of our long watch we have kept at sea, thou seest not aright, my brother James; but seest thou not the man that standeth there, comely and fair and of a cheerful countenance? But he said to me: Him I see not, brother; but let us go forth and we shall see what he would have."
Here, these two apostles in beholding Jesus, describe first seeing a child calling them from the shore, then later again, this same person appears to them as a cheerful man of noble appearance. A few articles later in the Acts of John, John describes his vision of the figure of Jesus during the Transfiguration in varying degrees of transcendence as follows.
"And at another time he taketh with him me and James and Peter unto the mountain where he was wont to pray, and we saw in him a light such as it is not possible for a man that useth corruptible (mortal) speech to describe what it was like. Again in like manner he bringeth us three up into the mountain, saying: Come ye with me. And we went again: and we saw him at a distance praying. I, therefore, because he loved me, drew nigh unto him softly, as though he could not see me, and stood looking upon his hinder parts: and I saw that he was not in any wise clad with garments, but was seen of us naked, and not in any wise as a man, and that his feet were whiter than any snow, so that the earth there was lighted up by his feet, and that his head touched the heaven"
Finally, we can hear this same John of the Apocryphal Acts describe himself in varying degrees of transcendence as follows.
"Thou hearest that I suffered, yet did I not suffer; that I suffered not, yet did I suffer; that I was pierced, yet I was not smitten; hanged, and I was not hanged; that blood flowed from me, and it flowed not; and, in a word, what they say of me, that befell me not, but what they say not, that did I suffer."
For Henry Corbin, Doceticism is not a set doctrine but a tendency for THOEPHANIC VISIONS by the person actively engaged in a spiritual experience of perception of angelic beings. For him,
" There is actual perception of an object, of a concrete person: the figure and the features are sharply defined, and yet it is not given to the perception of the sense organs. This perception is essentially an event of the soul, taking place in the soul and for the soul. As such its reality is essentially individuated for and with each soul; what the soul really sees, it is in each case alone in seeing. The field of its vision, its horizon, is in every case defined by the capacity, the dimension, of its own being."
John in the Acts defines this principal with his simple formula "I saw him again in such a form as I was able to take in." This comment essentially defines Doceticism as a theophanic vision which in every case is proportional to the theophanic dimension or capacity of the soul of the beholder.
Thus, for the gnostic christian, Jesus did not suffer and die to the cross, only the simulacrum of his body, which suffered only in appearance. This is apparent from the following statement from Cerinthus, considered the first gnostic christian:
"After Jesus' baptism the Christ, coming down from that power which is above all, descended upon Him in the form of a dove.....In the end, however, the Christ withdrew again from Jesus...the Christ, being spiritual, remained unable to suffer."
Profoundly, Cerinthus and the other gnostic christians understood the esoteric secret of the incarnation, something which later became unintelligible to the later church councils. However, although the gnostics possessed the tradition of the ancient wisdom, they failed this source when it came to understanding the secret of the crucifixion and death on the cross. This is in part the fault of the Ancient Wisdom itself, which always held that a god could not die to the earth, could not die on the physical plane. This tradition was expressly Hindu and Buddhist, wherein the incarnating spirit of both the Avatara and the Buddha, exited the physical body just prior to death. In fact, the adept actually practiced during his lifetime the technique, called mahasamadhi, of allowing the spirit to travel up the spine and depart the head thru the pineal gland. Even in the 20th century we see in the death of Paramahansa Yogananda, the vital signs of his physical body surviving some 20-30 days after death. The same phenomenon is also well respected in the many preserved bodies of saints of the catholic church.
Traces of this gnostic Doceticism survived briefly in the works of Origen and Manichaeism, but found a foothold in the doctrines of the judeao-christian tradition of Ebionite Christianity. Ebionism had two major doctrines that ran counter to Pauline Christianity. First was the primacy of brother James as Bishop of Jerusalem over peter as Bishop of Rome. There was an ancient tradition that it was Saul who pushed James to his injury from the pinnacle of the temple and while surviving the fall, had him beaten to death with a fuller's club. This may be a karmic source to the hostility to Pauline Christianity.
The second doctrine was that of the True Prophet as incarnated in Adam. For the Ebionites, the first man was the first form or vehicle of the True Prophet, sort of an Adam-Christos, which for Anthroposophists, would be akin to Adam and his sister-soul, the Nathan Jesus soul. The True Prophet was foretold by Moses in a succession of epiphanic forms, in the incarnations of Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses and Jesus. Judaism was a prophetic mystery stream and when this Ebionite tradition was carried over only a few centuries later to Islam, there appeared in Ismaili gnosis the doctrine of the Imam and its spokesperson, the prophet. (The Gnostic thread that also carried over to Manichaeism had a similar succession of True Prophets in Adam, Seth, Noah, Jesus, Buddha, Zoroaster and Mani).
By the time the Koran was written down we see a docetic verse that says,
"They slew Him not nor crucified, but it appeared so unto them, and lo! Those who disagree concerning it are in doubt thereof; they have no knowledge thereof save pursuit of a conjecture. They slew Him not for certain."
Thus, the docetic vision, carried forward thru Gnosticism, Ebionism and finally into Islam, does not deny the hypostatic union of the Christ spirit in Jesus of Nazareth, but denies that the Christ spirit died to the cross. Like Cerinthus, for them the penultimate words of Jesus on the cross "MY God, MY God, why has thou LEFT (forsaken) ME" are literally true. The Nathan-Christ spirit must have fled the body of the Solomon Jesus before the physical death on Golgotha.
THE FLEEING NAKED YOUTH
This docetic problem still exists to this day. It is Nicene Creed dogma for the catholic church that the two natures of Christ were united in one person, which godly person suffered and died on the cross. Like wise, for anthroposophy, it is dogma that the Christ was the first god to suffer death on the physical plane. In a lecture 2 April 1922 Steiner says,
"Thus the Mystery of Golgotha meant this for the gods: a greater wealth of knowledge through the wisdom of death. If a god had not passed through death, the whole Earth would have become entirely intellectual, without ever reaching the evolution which the gods had planned for it from the very beginning.
"But the esoteric element which Christ gave to his initiated disciples consisted therein, that He told them: What took place on Golgotha, is the reflection of superterrestial events and of the relationship between the worlds of the gods connected with Saturn, Sun, Moon and the present Earth, and Ahriman. The cross of Golgotha cannot be looked upon as something earthly, but as something having a meaning for the entire universe - this was the content of esoteric Christianity.
"We must learn to fathom what the Christ himself taught to his initiated disciples after his resurrection, and we must take for granted that he could impart such teachings only after having passed through an experience, here on earth, which he could not have had in the divine world - for until the Mystery of Golgotha death did not exist in the divine worlds. No being of the divine worlds had passed through death - Christ is the first-born who passed through death from the world of the hierarchies, connected with the evolution of the Earth that went through Saturn, Sun and Moon.
"The secret of Golgotha is the inclusion of death into life. Before Golgotha, the knowledge of life did not include death."
Thus, it is a basic tenant of anthroposophic esoteric christianity that both the Cosmic Christ and Jesus of Nazareth suffered death on the cross. Otherwise the Gnostic/Islamic principle of Doceticism is valid and Jesus was just another Avatara or True Prophet.
Now the problem arises when one tries to reconcile this basic tenant with other lectures of Dr. Steiner, notably, those of the GOSPEL OF ST. MARK (1912) and BACKGROUND TO THE GOSPEL OF ST. MARK (1910). In Mark 14:51 we read "and a youth was among His followers who wore a linen cloth about his body; and they seized him, but he left the linen cloth and fled naked." Now Dr. Steiner in his GSM 23 Sept. 1912 says,
"Who was this youth? Who was it who escaped here? Who is it that appears next to Christ Jesus nearly unclothed, and then slips away unclothed? This is the youthful cosmic impulse, it is the Christ who slips away, who now only has a loose connection with the Son of Man...It is the entirely naked, new cosmic impulse of earth evolution."
And later Steiner relates that the youth found in the tomb (Mark 16:1-6) after the resurrection of Jesus was,
"Also this same youth, ...the youth who slips away from the people at the moment when they condemn the Son of Man, who is there again when the three days are over, and from now onward is active as the cosmic principle of the earth."
Therefore, we have two Jesus beings, one is called Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of Man and the other is called the Cosmic Christ, the being who is the "new cosmic impulse of earth evolution." However, how are we to see the historical event of the death of a god on the cross, the basic tenant of both exoteric and esoteric christianity, if in fact, the Cosmic Christ abandoned the Son of Man on the cross in the spirit form of the fleeing naked youth, prior to the crucifixion?
As Oskar Kurten said in his article THE SON OF MAN AND THE COSMIC CHRIST,
"How then are we to understand the Cosmic Christ?...Christ could not possibly have separated from Jesus in Gethsemane but remained united with him even beyond death...it would be a complete contradiction to everything Steiner says concerning the Mystery of Golgotha, if we were to conclude that it had been only the human being, Jesus of Nazareth, who as the Son of Man, suffered death on the cross."
Kurten proposes a strictly Steiner like solution to the dilemma by separating out from the Son of Man those higher spiritual forces of the Cosmic Christ, which withdrew from Christ Jesus on the cross, in the image of the fleeing youth. However, he wrongly concludes that these higher forces of the Cosmic Christ, after death, reunite with the risen Christ to "live in their triune oneness as the spirit of the earth in human souls ON EARTH." There was no cosmic merger of the three separate microcosmic and/or macrocosmic principles (manas, buddhi and atma) of the Christ being living in or on the earth. Only the macrocosmic ego of the Cosmic Christ lives in or around the earth. The other three higher spiritual forces to which Dr. Steiner referred actually live outside the earth and in the sun sphere, which is a matter to be taken up later.
The anthroposophic bible scholar, Edward R. Smith, in his book, THE DISCIPLE WHOM JESUS LOVED, says that the fleeing naked youth was in fact the risen Lazarus-John personality, in whom, like Kurten, those higher spiritual forces of the Cosmic Christ, have united. And it was also the risen Lazarus-John who appeared in the tomb after the resurrection. This certainly is a plausible explanation considering that Lazarus not only experienced a personal initiation by Jesus, but was actually raised from the dead, creating possibilities for higher than normal angels to incarnate in him. However, Lazarus can only be considered a temporary carrier of these higher principles until the time of the resurrection, at which time these principles were disbursed into the etheric and astral spheres surrounding the earth.
For me the solution comes from an evaluation of the correspondences of the macrocosmic principles of the Cosmic Christ and the microcosmic principles of Jesus Christ, the Son of Man.
THE SON OF GOD and the SON OF MAN
Ever wonder why our personal memory only extends back to a certain age in early childhood? Maybe 3 or 4 years old. My parents told me that I rode a 20 inch bicycle at age 2 and 3. Later, when I was 4 or 5 I got a new bike and I couldn't ride it, I had to learn to ride it all over again with training wheels. Why shouldn't riding a bike be like swimming, that once learned, never forgotten? Was it because I was two different persons, and had no link between the two?
In a very real sense, we are two different persons living two very different stages of life. The first person and age is from birth to the emergence of our personal ego at which time our personal memory begins. I look back at these first 2 or 3 years as my age of 'cosmic memory.' During life I have a feeling about certain things that I know occurred during these years but, I have no memory recollection of the events. For example, when in my local church, I frequently think of seeing angels during mass, something that I know happened in my early years, but have no memory of it. Likewise, my cosmic memory tells me that as a child, when sitting alone in the bathtub, I had lots of little friends there, with me. That's why I carried on the practice later in childhood of having little plastic men to play with in the tub.
In all of us, there is a 'crossing over' that occurs during the transition from the short life of the cosmic memory to the emergence of the personal ego at age 3 or 4. From that time onwards, the cosmic memory is forever lost and our ego self-consciousness begins. This second person and second age of life lasts until death. Our personal life memories extend back only to the beginning of this second life.
In that most remarkable of little books, THE SPIRITUAL GUIDANCE OF HUMANITY, Dr. Steiner describes how the development of the infant for up to three years is lead by the forces of higher angels. In a microcosmic recapitulation and reflection of the three sacrifices of the pre-incarnated Christ, these spiritual angels teach the infant, first to stand up and walk, to orient itself in space. Second, to learn how to speak, in the Noam Chomsky sense, to learn language. And third, to think with human reason. The capacities to stand up, speak and think are not hereditary, but come from our soul, out of ourselves. But what goes into the infant as influences come from the higher spirits. As Steiner says,
"once we are no longer soft and malleable as children, we can no longer stand to have the forces of the spiritual world continue to affect us directly...higher forces that have a decisive influence on us in childhood can work on us for THREE YEARS....if we could somehow remove the I from a person...and replace it with an I that is connected with the spiritual worlds, after three years this persons body would fall apart. "
After these three years, these higher forces give way to the incoming ego consciousness and our personal memory begins our cosmic memory fades into the subconscious. So we may say there are two distinct periods in a human life. In the first three years, the child is lead thru physical development by higher forces and over the remaining years of lifetime, the child/adult is led thru life out of his own personal ego forces. In the microcosmic man, we may refer to these two stages, respectively, as the Son of God and the Son of Man.
What are these "higher forces" that lead the child's life for three years and are so powerful, that if they didn't leave, the physical body would be destroyed?? Steiner is very non-committal about naming them, but he leaves a few telling hints. He says that "what lives within us (in childhood) is truly a higher, divine human being and we can feel ourselves pervaded by this being as by a living presence of whom we can say THIS IS MY INNER GUIDE...this higher I is connected to the spiritual hierarchies...and has been there all along." The spiritual hierarchies to which Steiner refers are those of the Archons, Archangels and Angels, working in us as the higher principles of atma, buddhi and manas.
In one sense, we can say that at birth our microcosmic atma unfolds, guiding the development of the fetus thru ontogeny. After birth, our personal buddhi and manas unfold during the life of the cosmic memory until the birth of the personal ego. At the same time, our mother's heriditary etheric and astral bodies sheath our personal ego, until, at second teeth, our personal etheric body forms and later at puberty, our personal astral body forms. It is the presence of these three higher angelic hierarchies that guide our embryonic and early childhood development that can only last a few short years and must leave actively working in the physical body. After their withdrawal, they still continue to work in us, however inactively, only during sleep.
This higher I, this inner guide is of course our personal buddhi principle working unconsciously in us during early childhood. As such, it is directly connected to the higher archangelic hierarchies. It has to leave the body when our personal ego arrives because we have not evolved far enough to let the higher I live within us for an entire lifetime. We can only experience glimpses of it. This higher I, when properly developed, will also become our Christ within us. In the microcosm, Christ is the buddhi spirit of humanity. As our personal ego evolves unselfish love, we replace our personal I with the higher I of Christ, not my ego, but the Christ within me. That is why Steiner said "to know the forces at work in childhood is to know the Christ within us."
Dr. Steiner further describes these two periods in the life of a man in BGSM ch. six as follows:
" Two periods of development, each very different from the other, are apparent in man's life between birth and death in every incarnation. One of these periods lies between birth and the point at which an individual's memory begins. Just think how much is taken in during the first three years of life; yet modern man has no remembrance at all of how the impressions were made. It is only at the point from which memories begin that he gradually detaches himself from his environment as an independent being."
In the Pauline sense, this first period, the cosmic memory coming over from our life-before-birth, can be called the "Son of God." The second period, from the crystallization of the self-conscious forces into the new ego and after the beginning of memory, lasting until the end of life, can be called the "Son of Man." Dr. Steiner says that,
"This is the spirit which in Pauline christianity is called 'the Son of Man'. Here is a concept which you must grasp-the concept of the Son of Man, who can be found in a human being onwards from the point in his life to which his later memory extends, and includes everything he has acquired from the civilization around him."
Thus, for humanity the period of the son of god lasts from birth until ages 3/4 and the period of the son of god, lasts from ages 3/4 until death. For the Christ being this pattern was reversed. We may think of the life of the Nathan Jesus of Nazareth from age 12 to the incarnation at age 30 as His period of the Son of Man and His life from the baptism until His death on the cross as the period of the Son of God.
CHRIST AS THE SON OF GOD WITHIN THE SON OF MAN
Dr. Steiner says the folowing about these two persons:
"This can most easily be expressed by the two concepts which in earlier times designated these two beings within us. The one is the concept of the being of spirit-and-soul in the first three years of childhood, the being who is now no longer really adapted to the external nature of man and is, moreover, unable to unfold ego-consciousness: this being of spirit-and-soul was called in olden times the Son of God. And the being whose physical body today is so constituted that ego-consciousness can awaken within it was called the Son of Man. —— The Son of God within the Son of Man. —— The conditions prevailing today are such that the Son of God can no longer become conscious in the Son of Man, but must first be separated if the ego-consciousness of today is to arise. It is the task of man, through conscious absorption of the realities of the spiritual world, so to transform and make himself master of his external sheaths that the Son of Man is gradually permeated by the Son of God. When the earth has reached the end of its evolution, man must have consciously achieved what he has no longer been able to achieve from childhood onwards: he must have completely permeated what he is as Son of Man with the divine part of his being. What is it that must completely permeate and flow through his human nature? What is it that must pour into every part of the physical, etheric and astral bodies, so that the whole Son of Man is permeated with the Son of God? It is that which lives in the first three years of life, but permeated with the fully conscious ego —— this it is that must spread through the whole man"
In the incarnation of the Christ being, we also see the same correspondence. The indwelling Cosmic Christ spirit could only live in the physical body of Nathan Jesus also for three years. This is His period of the Son of God. In the same sense that in the microcosm for human childhood, there lived a higher spirit which guides the infancy of a child, so too in the macrocosmic life of Christ, there lived for three years, a higher spirit that guided His life. That higher spirit was THE FATHER.
In the same sense that the buddhi spirt lives in the child for three years and then departs, so too the Father spirit lived in Jesus for three years and finally departed during the agony on the cross. And, in Christ, the Son of God merged with the Son of Man, in reverse order. The Father forces incarnated during the baptism lived along side and in union with the other macrocosmic principles of manas and buddhi. But for the Cosmic Christ, his buddhi was the Father living in Him for three years, hence the saying " I and the Father are one." For us as humans, our higher I or higher ego is the Christ. For Christ, His higher ego or buddhi, was the Father spirit within him.
In a very real sense, what caused the destruction of the physical body of Jesus of Nazareth was the supreme forces of the Father spirit living in the Son of Man. Steiner says here,
"In the normal man of today these two forms of consciousness are separate: indeed they must be separate, for thy are incompatible. Nor were they any more compatible in Christ Jesus himself; after those three years, death was bound to supervene. ...These circumstances...came about because these two lived within each other....the living together of the Son of God and the Son of Man"
However, slowly, slowly, the Son of Man and the Son of God separated. Dr. Steiner remarked in his GSMK lectures that,
" toward the end of His life Jesus of Nazareth was more and more alone, and the Christ became ever more loosely connected with Him. Although the cosmic element was there until the moment pictured as that of the sweating of blood in Gethsemane and Christ at this moment was fully united with Jesus of Nazareth, now through the failure of human beings to understand this connection, the link was loosened."
It was during this sweating of the blood, that this Father spirit fully merged into the personal ego of Jesus of Nazareth, such that " I and the Father are one." This merger of the higher and lower egos fully penetrated His physical body, later causing the atma in the phantom body to arise as the "new Adam." Now, for the first time, one can speak of the former Jesus of Nazareth as the true "Cosmic Christ" in the sense that His former personal ego has been transformed into a MACRO-cosmic ego.
After the departure of the naked fleeing youth Steiner remarks that "all that was left was the Son of Man." This is a strong statement and does not really reflect the whole picture, which was that still within the Son of Man was the macrocosmic Ego of the Father, existing now as the higher ego/buddhi principle of Jesus.
Steiner uses several different terms for the cosmic qualities of this Cosmic Christ and they are confusing. One is the "youthful cosmic element" and another is just the "cosmic element". In his description, Steiner lumps together the triune principles of the ego, manas and buddhi of the Cosmic Christ into a confused term of "youthful cosmic impulse." If we take them separately, we can describe two terms. One is the newly formed MACROCOSMIC EGO of the Christ after the sweating of blood in the garden. The other term we can call the "cosmic element" and it was only this element that slipped away with the naked fleeing youth. This "cosmic element" consisted of the three MICRO-COSMIC principles, manas, buddhi and atma, of the Cosmic Christ. This cosmic element was preserved in the naked fleeing youth to be dispersed later after the resurrection. At the time of the sweating of blood in the garden, the only MACROCOSMIC principle living in the Christ being was the newly formed EGO, while the three higher principles were personal to the Christ and in no sense macrocosmic.
Although the three-fold principles of the Cosmic Christ departed in the figure of the fleeing naked youth, the forces of the Father, as working into the macrocosmic ego, never left Christ Jesus until the death on the cross. The sixth saying from the cross "MY God, My God, why has thou forsaken Me?" is a symbol for the ego of Christ lamenting the departure of the Father spirit in him just before the instant of physical death. Maybe it was to this secret that Cerinthus and the other gnostics were referred when saying "In the end however, the Christ spirit departed."
How do we reconcile the docetic vision of the Gnostics with the confusion created by Dr. Steiner when he says that the Son of God as the "youthful cosmic element' departed Christ BEFORE the death on the cross. How can we have this bifurcated spiritual being and still have the legacy that "God died on the cross"?
It was only the "youthful cosmic element" consisting of the three micro-cosmic principles of the Christ that departed with the naked fleeing youth. These three principles are the youthful impulses of the Christ that will manifest within humanity over the next thousands of years. The MACROCOSMIC EGO of the Christ, which was fully penetrated during the sweating of the blood at the garden, remained with the Son of Man as he dies to the cross during the crucifixion. The Christ being bifurcated. The Son of Man, with His macrocosmic ego, died on the cross, fulfilling the legacy of a god dying to the cross. The Son of God, as the youthful element, departed in the figure of the naked fleeing youth, to preserve those microcosmic principles for future humanity. These three forces continued to "hover around Him " and they later returned to the tomb after the resurrection.
It is here that Oskar Kurten makes his error. For him, these higher forces of the Cosmic Christ that return to the tomb, reunite with the risen Christ to "live in their triune oneness as the spirit of the earth in human souls ON EARTH." However, as we have described, only the Macrocosmic ego of the risen Christ remained on earth. His other forces of manas, buddhi and atma live came to live the earths atmosphere and on the sun. These are gifts to the future mankind as now explained.
CHRIST DIED TO THE SUN
To begin, lets understand about the birth of the Christ spirit in the body of Jesus of Nazareth during the baptism at Jordan. Dr. Steiner says in THE FIFTH GOSPEL (lec. III) that,
"In the fifth gospel this relates to the life of the Christ as conception does to the human being on earth. The life of Christ from then until the Mystery of Golgotha may be compared to the life of the embryo in its mothers womb. The Christ spirit may be said to have gone thru embryonic life between the baptism by John and the Mystery of Golgotha. The Mystery of Golgotha itself, that is, the death of Jesus, has to be seen AS THE BIRTH OF THE CHRIST SPIRIT ON EARTH....the continued life of the Christ in the EARTH SPHERE after Ascension or Pentecost has to be compared to what the human soul experiences in Devachan."
Then, to understand about the death of the Christ spirit during the crucifixion, we read in the lecture series KARMIC RELATIONSHIPS Vol. VIII, Steiner says,
" Christ dies to the sun...He went forth from the sun as we human beings go forth from the earth when we die...after His cosmic death, Christ left His Spirit-Man (atma) on the sun and around the earth, His Life-Spirit (buddhi). So that after the mystery of Golgotha the earth was swathed as it were by the Life-Spirit of the Christ....and bringing down His ego and His spirit-self (manas) to the earth "
This is how to think of it. We humans DIE TO THE EARTH and GO TO THE SUN. When we die, we leave our physical body here on earth, our etheric body disperses into the atmosphere and our astral body crosses the first threshold into purgatory, the moon sphere. After our penance is served there, we leave our astral shell in purgatory and then cross the second threshold into the sun sphere to live in lower and higher heaven/devachan. Thus, our personal ego joins our spiritual trinity of manas, buddhi and atma to sojourn in the spiritual worlds of the sun sphere and slightly beyond, until the moment of cosmic midnight, when we then retrace our path thru the spheres, in a downwards spiral to incarnate again on earth. Thus, after death we basically travel from the earth, to the moon and to the sun and return again for our next incarnation.
For the Cosmic Christ, the process was just the reverse, for He DIED TO THE SUN and WENT TO THE EARTH. The Cosmic Christ, as a macrocosmic being, also has His higher principles of atma, buddhi and manas. When He left the sun sphere to incarnate in the Son of Man during the baptism, He died to the sun, as we die to the earth, but instead of leaving his physical body, as we do here on earth, He left His ATMA, on the sun.
Because of this occult fact, it was not the MACRO-cosmic atma of the Son of God that penetrated the physical body down to the bones during the sweating of blood in Gethsemane, but His MICRO-cosmic atma, into which the Forces of the Father had worked thru the macrocosmic ego of the Cosmic Christ. Dr. Steiner had said many times that the forces of the Cosmic Christ FULLY PENETRATED the physical body of Christ Jesus, the final and deepest penetration coming during the sweating of blood during the agony in the Garden of Gethsemane, at a time when the Son of God and the Son of Man were still fully united. But this must only be understood to mean the microcosmic atma that penetrated, since the macrocosmic atma forces had been left in the sun sphere.
Was this microcosmic penetration sufficient to accomplish the goal of a creating the etheric Phantom Body of a New Adam? Yes, because the penetration occurred when the Father forces of the Son of God were united in the Son of Man. Even though the forces of the Son of God later departed in the fleeting naked youth, the atmic act was consecrated in the sweating of the blood.
The active Father forces, working thru the macrocosmic ego of the Son of God, replaced the atma of the Son of Man, to accomplish the same deed. It was in effect a replacement between the forces of the Father for the abandoned atma forces of Christ Jesus, left on the sun for the future development of humanity. It can be better understood in relation to the future of humanity, when the macrocosmic atma of the Cosmic Christ will be used for the other purposes of: (1) the resurrection of the dead at the end of this manvantara cycle during the reunification of the earth planet into the sun and (2) the reunification of the sun and earth at the end of the Vulcan manvantara. (which purpose will be discussed later)
The other principles of the Cosmic Christ were dispersed as follows. After the death of the Son of Man on the cross, the macrocosmic ego of the Cosmic Christ, DIED TO THE EARTH, and became part of the earth's interior, the earth as Holy Grail chalice. The macrocosmic MANAS of the Cosmic Christ, was deposited in the earth's atmosphere as the so-called "Fifth Gospel", as the tableau of imaginations of the Cosmic Christ. This tableau contains the etheric memory of the living Christ and was also LEFT TO THE FUTURE OF MANKIND. The macrocosmic BUDDHI of the Cosmic Christ, was deposited above the earth's atmosphere, and also LEFT TO THE FUTURE OF MANKIND, as the sphere of the returning Etheric Christ.
Now simply said, the fleeing naked youth is a symbol for the higher spiritual principles of the Cosmic Christ, the macrocosmic manas and buddhi, which were left in the earths atmosphere for the future use of mankind. (And not united in some triune oneness as described by Mr. Kurten)
In our first conclusion, we have the four higher cosmic principles of the Cosmic Christ as follows:
7. atma, in the sun;
6. buddhi, in the etheric atmosphere surrounding the earth;
5. manas, on earth, but in a surrounding astral sphere, above earth, as the Fifth Gospel; and
4. MACRO-cosmic ego, in the center of the earth, as sun seed, forever united with the planetary evolution of earth as future planetary spirit of the earth and as the Holy Grail of our solar system.
THE MACROCOSMIC EGO of the COSMIC CHRIST
However, it is important to understand the difference between the Microcosmic and Macrocosmic principles in the Cosmic Christ. In the above scheme, only no. 4, the Ego of Christ is Macrocosmic as to humanity and this solar system. The manas, buddhi and atma of the Cosmic Christ are microcosmic. Dr. Steiner explains this difference in his lecture the COSMIC EGO AND HUMAN EGO (9 Jan 1912),
"The Christ is quite radically different from other beings who share in earth evolution. The Christ was not directly connected with earth evolution, but with the sun evolution. He is a being who remained behind , not only during Moon evolution, but also during the Old Sun evolution. His evolutionary conditions were such that this macrocosmic Christ being evolved the macrocosmic ego outside earthly conditions. He was a macrocosmic being from the beginning of earth evolution, on. The Christ, then, is a four membered being, including His macrocosmic ego, just as man himself is microcosmically a four membered being."
In the same vein, Dr Steiner in his lecture of 18 Nov 1911 reprinted in the book ESOTERIC CHRISTIANITY AND THE MISSION OF CHRISTIAN ROSENCRUTZ says,
"Since the Saturn stage, throughout the Sun and Moon stage, man has developed his physical, etheric and astral bodies. The ego could only appear on earth in a body that was sufficiently prepared for it and then develop further under the nuturing influence of the Christ impulse because Christ is macrocosmically what our ego is to us microcosmically... ..Christ is a macrocosmic being at the fourth stage of His macrocosmic development, as man is microcosmically at the fourth stage. So you should keep macrocosmic and microcosmic principles apart, but be clear about the fact that the first four macrocosmic principles include of course all the higher microcosmic principles."
As a human, our ego principle was a gift poured out from the cosmos by the Holy Spirit and the Spirits of Form. The sphere of the ego descended during the middle of the Atlantean Age and since that time, humans have absorbed from it their microcosmic ego, which over time has now become hereditary as the ego is now implanted during fetus development. However, as a microcosmic principle, the destiny of our human ego is limited to the existence of this Fourth Earth manvantara. Although we may be able to partially evolve the higher principles of manas, buddhi and atma during earth evolution, the evolution of these higher principles depend on Luciferic beings, which are only microcosmic in development. These higher principles are in a sense only grafted unto humans.
Most Anthroposophists find this difficult to understand, because in effect, the Cosmic Christ as presently membered is a lower spiritual being than say, Lucifer. Because the luciferic beings have as a whole already developed their fifth manas principle and some have partially developed their sixth and seventh principles, they stand higher than man and higher, in this respect, than the Christ. Dr. Steiner says that this is the basis for the position of the anti-christ against the Christ in the future of humanity, because, the anti-christ will have more fully developed its higher principles. However, these luciferic beings have only developed these higher principles MICRO-cosmically, whereas the Christ has developed His ego MACRO-cosmically, which is infinitely more important than all microcosmic principles combined.
Another problem I find most Anthroposophists have is Dr. Steiner's statement that as presently membered, "the Christ is a macrocosmic being at the fourth stage of His macrocosmic development." I really have never met any Anthroposophist who really understands what this means, cosmically. Most Anthroposophists say that because He is the world creator Logos described in the prologue of the John gospel, that He is a fully developed twelve membered being and has always been such. But this certainly is not the case. We can clearly determine this from two of Steiner's lectures.
First, in the lecture series, MATERIALISM AND THE TASK OF ANTHROPOSOPHY (3 June 1921) Dr. Steiner describes the Logos of the John gospel as follows:
"This was what the Gospel of John was supposed to state. This was basically what the church fathers of the first christian centuries struggled for... What we see as earth does not originate from the Father God nor from the nature spirits. It comes from the Son, from the Logos, whom the Father let spring forth from Himself so that the earth might be created by the Logos. And the gospel of John was written in order to indicate: the earth was not created by the Father God. The Father god made the Son come forth from Him and the Son is the creator of the earth."
However, it seems that ths effort to make clear that the Father God did not create the earth and its natural forms became misplaced in Anthroposophy. It was carried to far. Most Anthroposophists today believe that the creative powers of the Logos extend back to the beginnings of creation and time, back to the Saturn Age. Thus, taking these words of the John gospel to far. "In the beginning was the Word..and the word was God. All things were made thru Him." For most Anthroposophists, these words take the Cosmic Christ as Logos back to Steiner's Age of Old Saturn. However, this is again certainly not the case.
The Father God was the creator during the ancient manvantaras of Old Saturn, Old Sun and Old Moon. However, as J. Scotus Erigena made clear in his DIVISIONS OF NATURE, the Father God created and left. The Father God is now absent from the evolution of our solar system. The creator of our solar system, the Solar Logos, along with the other six Elohim, was the Christ Logos. However, it must be made very clear that His work as Solar Logos began only AT THE BEGINNING OF THE 4TH EARTH MANVANTARA, and not before. When John writes in his prologue "in the beginning was the Word", the beginning for this author was the beginning of the Earth manvantara, not the beginning of the creation of our solar system or for that matter, the beginning of the universe as we know it. And when Dr. Steiner says that " Now adays people pay no attention to the fact that the Gospel of John clearly states that the Logos is the creative principle, not the Father God", Steiner is referring to the creative principle as beginning the Earth manvantara, not before.
Dr. Steiner qualifies the former statement saying,
"He (the Father god) should be acknowledged as one with the Christ but as that aspect of the Trinity that was active until the earth was formed, whereas the actual ruler of the earth is the Christ, the Logos... The world of the resting Godhead, insofar as it is nature, the earth is declining..as far as its mineral kingdom is concerned."
Now these above comments of Dr. Steiner are in reference to a review of the ancient wisdom written by the Celtic bard, J. Scotus Erigena, in his book, the DIVISIONS OF NATURE. However, Steiner at no time disagrees with this ancient wisdom of the old Celtic initiation schools extant in Ireland in the ninth century, saying that, "He is a characteristic representative of what extended from an earlier age, from the time preceding the 4th century", his "church fathers of the first christian centuries" that struggled to make clear the meaning of John's gospel.
The second lecture of Steiner's to look at concerning the claim that the Christ is a 'fully developed twelve membered being and has always been such' is again that gem of wisdom contained in COSMIC EGO AND HUMAN EGO (9 Jan 1912), saying,
"The Christ being is a being who in a certain sense is like the human being, only that man is microcosmic and has brought his four principles to expression microcosmically, and hence has his ego also microcosmically as earth-ego-but the Christ as cosmic Ego. His evolution was such that He was great and significant because the perfect development of this ego, which He brought down to earth. And he had not the fifth macrocosmic principle, and not the sixth, for HE WILL EVOLVE THESE ON JUPITER AND VENUS, IN ORDER THAT HE MAY GIVE THEM TO MAN. Now each macrocosmic principle has an inner relationship to the corresponding microcosmic principle; the fourth macrocosmic principle in the Christ corresponds to the fourth microcosmic principle in man, and the fifth in the Christ will correspond to the Spirit-Self in man."
What this means is that the Christ is not a fully developed cosmic being, but more structured as follows in our second conclusion;
7. Microcosmic atma, in the sun sphere;
6. Microcosmic buddhi, in the etheric atmosphere surrounding the earth;
5. Microcosmic manas, on earth, but in a surrounding astral sphere, above earth, as the fifth gospel; and
4. MACRO-cosmic ego, in the center of the earth, as sun seed, forever united with the planetary evolution of earth as future planetary spirit of the earth, as the Holy Grail of our solar system.
The spheres of our present human microcosmic manas, buddhi and atma are the spheres of imaginations of beings that lived during the Old Moon manvantara. The record of their thoughts, feelings and will were preserved and passed on and over to the Earth manvantara during the recapitulations of Saturn, Sun and Moon. Preserved as cosmic imaginations for our Earth evolution, they become our higher spheres of imagination, inspiration and intuition, to which we ascend after we complete our cycle of self-consciousness during the evolution of our sentient soul, mind soul and consciousness soul. However, as great as these gifts are, they are still only microcosmic in nature. They are gifts from partially evolved microcosmic beings like ourselves.
When the Cosmic Christ gave up His macrocosmic ego to mankind during His death on the cross of Golgotha, He gave us a chance to participate in His ego, during Earth evolution. As the Cosmic Christ is a macrocosmic being at His fourth (ego) stage of His macrocosmic evolution, so is man a microcosmic being living, at his fourth-ego-stage of his microcosmic evolution. However, to the extent that we absorb His cosmic ego within us, the Christ within me, so we also participate in His macrocosmic evolution.
What this means is that Christ will come again to us during the Jupiter manvantara wherein He will develop His fifth macrocosmic principle of Manas. Like wise, Christ will come again during the Venus manvantara wherein He will develop His sixth macrocosmic principle and so into the last seventh Vulcan manvantara, wherein His atma, preserved on the sun, will also be given to mankind. Thus, during the Jupiter manvantara, the macrocosmic Manas principle of the Cosmic Christ will also be given to humanity in the same sense that His macrocosmic ego was given to mankind during His death on the cross. And, during the Venus manvantara, the macrocosmic Buddhi principle of the Cosmic Christ will also be given to humanity. And during the Vulcan manvantara, the macrocosmic Atma will be given to the earth and humanity for that transition of the earth into a new sun. In each manvantara, the Cosmic Christ retrieves his microcosmic manas, buddhi and atma, left behind in the earth and sun spheres and transforms them, into macrocosmic principles, for the benefit of humanity. And as humans, during our future evolutions, we participate in His cosmic evolution to the extend that we take the Christ impulse within us.
Lets not misunderstand here. During each manvantara there will be two choices for humanity. First, in the same sense that during the Earth manvantara the Spirits of Form sacrificed their macro-cosmic egos to spread out over humankind, so likewise, during each of the next three manvantaras, a spirit group will also sacrifice their manas, buddhi and atma, to spread out over mankind, so as to implant these higher principles. However, coincident with these evolving events of the Divine Plan, there will also be the second choice, that of taking in the corresponding impulses of the Cosmic Christ.
As Dr. Steiner said (above in CEAHE)
" Thus the Christ being is a being who in a certain sense is like a human being...He had not the fifth macrocosmic principle and not the sixth, for He will evolve these on Jupiter and on Venus, in order THAT HE MAY GIVE THEM TO MAN."
Finally, we can see how the fully developed Cosmic Christ will evolve with us over the next three manvantaras as follows:
4. MACRO-cosmic ego, achieved during Earth evolution.
5. MACRO-cosmic manas, to be achieved during Jupiter evolution
6. MACRO-cosmic buddhi, to be achieved during Venus evolution;
7. MACRO-cosmic atma, to be achieved during Vulcan evolution.
Thus, mankind has the opportunity to evolves its higher three principles in union with the Cosmic Christ. At the beginning of each new manvantara, all levels of being go up a notch. At the present time, The Cosmic Christ is membered as a nine-fold cosmic being, who will become 10 fold during the Jupiter manvantara, 11 fold during the Venus manvantara and finally, a fully developed twelve-fold being during the Vulcan manvantara. At this future time, the 12 fold-ness of the Cosmic Christ will reach up to the constellation of Aries, the Mystical Lamb.
In a lecture of 28 Oct 1923 Dr. Steiner said,
"In the pineal gland, the optic thalamus secretes out of itself the so-called brain sand, the mineral element of the head....It is actually in this mineral deposit that the spirit-man (atma) is anchored; and this immediately shows that what is living cannot harbor the spirit, but that the spirit in man needs something non-living as its center, which means that above all else it must be a spirit with independent life."
Likewise, it is in the mineral deposit of gold forming a non-living center of the earth to which is anchored the atma of Christ that He left on the sun. As Judith von Halle said " The etheric part of the Jesus body was drawn down to the center of the earth. And this part of the etheric body, the buddhi part, helps in the Christ's work of drawing towards a new-in fact His first and only Physical body: the earth body, the earth itself. The descended Crist laid a sun seed into the inmost earth: the potential for it to become a sun itself in the future." In the last Vulcan manvantara, the spiritual alchemy of the earth's gold and the Christ's atma in the sun will join to transform the earth into the new sun of the next cycle of planetary evolution.
28 Jan 02 &06