By Rudolf Steiner
1914. Contents: issues of View; Mysteries and their knowledge; Greek Sages earlier than Plato; knowledge of the Mysteries and fable; knowledge of Egypt; Gospels; Apocalypse; Jesus His old historical past; St. Augustine and the Church.
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Extra resources for Christianity as Mystical Fact and the Mysteries of Antiquity
Rather it is the “eternal” itself that the mystai seek to possess; they have first to awaken the eternal to existence within them, and then they can speak of it. 8 That is the meaning too of Sophocles’ fragment: Thrice blessed when they come to the realm of shades who have seen these rites! 9 That is why to speak of the Mysteries is at the same time to tell of dangers. For is not to lead someone to the door of the Underworld to rob that person of happiness, of the very meaning of life? A terrible responsibility is incurred by such an act.
For such people, however, the spirit comes to birth out The Mysteries and Pre-Socratic Philosophy 29 of the clash of the elements. Indeed it is the spirit that brings the elements into equilibrium. Thus, in human beings nature transcends herself: all things are one, and it is the same power that made conflict and opposition that now, in its wisdom, reconciles them once again. Humanity lives in an eternal duality, in the contradiction between the flux of time and eternity. Through the eternal Logos human beings attain to individual existence, and must henceforward fashion their higher being.
The presence of the daimon within is a sign of one’s own eternal self, and this one can no longer be limited to the role of informing one’s own particular personality; the personality as such is simply one mode of appearance for the daimon, which cannot in principle be confined to a single personal manifestation. It has the power to inhabit many personalities and may shift from personality to personality. The important idea of reincarnation arises self-evidently from the premises of Heraclitus’ thought.