Understanding these Testing Times: Part 2
Three Spiritual Festivals 2017
Dear friend and co-worker,
In our Autumn 2016 letter, 1 we discussed the testing time that humanity is passing through as energies descend to earth from a variety of sources. Chief amongst these is the force from Shamballa – the centre where the Will of God is known, and an explanatory booklet on this theme is enclosed. The Shamballa force is so powerful that its direct impact on human consciousness in the early twentieth century inspired great ideologies and new ways of thinking, but also stimulated many barriers to the free circulation of those ideas in the lower worlds. The consequent ‘burning up’ of these obstacles was the underlying esoteric cause of the two World Wars.
In more recent times, two further direct impacts of the Shamballa force have taken place, inspiring spiritually sensitive people with the will-to-serve the Divine plan. However, another effect of these impacts has been a welling up of the self-will or of the will-to-power in some nations and individuals. This lower response to the Shamballa force is characteristic of the developed lower nature and is due to the sense of separativeness conditioning the lower mind or intellect. Given that the development of the intellect is one of the major goals for humanity in this period of evolution, this is not a completely unexpected reaction.
Viewed esoterically, the unfoldment of the intellect is governed by the Law of Cleavages which stimulates the ability to separate and divide, thereby enabling consciousness to make comparisons and choose between them – in other words, to discriminate. Until human nature is sufficiently refined, choices are often led by desire for self-empowerment over that which empowers the good of the whole. But as desire gives way to love this will steadily change as the Law of Cleavages is superseded by another great law – the Law of Loving Understanding.
This latter law is destined to govern humanity’s future evolution and its influence is already growing as we move into the Aquarian Age. It will lead to the “development of a world-wide international spirit and the recognition of one universal faith in God and in humanity. It will also work out as the major expression of divinity upon the planet.”2 We are already witnessing those who are responsive to the Law of Loving Understanding as it is expressed through the highest human demonstration of the Shamballa force – the will-to-good. It is to be seen in all who demonstrate a new and potent type of livingness and dedicate their lives to serving humanity.
An interesting aspect of this progress will be a closer affinity between the fields of religion, science and philosophy. The search for truth and meaning can never be attained by any of these departments alone, and it is the task of philosophy to bring religion and science together in mutual respect and harmony. Western philosophy has been an outstanding success in helping to produce the independent thinker, but in order to evolve further it cannot depend on the intellect alone – it requires the wisdom of the heart. The very word ‘philosophy’ comes from the Greek philosophia – from philo meaning "loving" and sophia meaning "knowledge or wisdom”. We have then, the “love of knowledge and wisdom,” and one cannot be a lover of wisdom without engaging the heart.
In this connection, the great legacy of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity should, as Rudolf Steiner remarked, have been the ending of intellectual western philosophy. He said, “It will not be possible to evade this theory of relativity for the physical world, but precisely this fact will drive us to a knowledge of the spirit. What is significant about the theory of relativity is the fact that it proves the necessity of a science of the spirit that is to be sought in spiritual ways, independent of observation in nature. That the theory of relativity forces us to think in this way constitutes its value within the development of world conception.”3 Indeed, there can be no sensible philosophy constrained to the intellect; for it operates in the world of maya and illusion where, in Steiner’s description of relativity theory, “Everything is only in relation to something else”.
While creative and promising thinkers are emerging in the field of philosophy, a shift towards esoteric philosophy and “thinking in the heart” is needed if sense is ever to be made of the nature of reality. The energy of love is focused in the heart and it is here, within the context of the unified whole, that the true relationships between all things are revealed. By meditating and thinking truth into human hearts and minds, all have the opportunity to serve in this connection.
The needed destruction of obstacles to humanity’s evolution will continue as the Shamballa force works out into expression through human consciousness. The great opportunity now present is to work with the prevailing energy in its purest form as the will-to-good – and the three spiritual festivals are marvelous opportunities to do so with added power. The annual Arcane School conferences take place in this period of heightened opportunity, with the keynote: Let the group evoke the Shamballa Force and demonstrate the will-to-good in new and potent livingness. As always, you are warmly invited to attend. Programme details are enclosed.
In the light of group livingness,