Spirit and Soul – Perfection and Evolution

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Life is not rigid order, if it were so it would be converted into its opposite, death, as in the case of natural science that to study a vital phenomenon needs to kill it.

Life is a joyous creative chaos made of solves and coagulates, in which forms arise and dissolve only to form new forms, which arise from life to return to life. Because in the immediate future life does not pursue “per-fection”, that is to say, being made beyond all means, to the point where it is no longer possible to take anything away from it. Perfection is the final result obtained in the spiritual world and not in the material world, it must be placed at the end and not during life: to be alive is to evolve. All the kingdoms of nature, mineral, vegetable and animal are more alive on the animo-spiritual plane than they are on the physical one. Indeed, it is necessary to evolve in soul and spirit in order to form the spiritual organs suitable for the perception of this higher life.

Whoever is able to see reality and see through it, knows that this world on the physical plane will never reach perfection. Nevertheless, people who think materialistically have the illusion that perfection can be achieved on the physical plane. This is the source of many other illusions […].

– Rudolf Steiner, GA 177, The Fall of the Spirits of Darkness: Third Lecture: The Search for a Perfect World, Dornach, 1 October 1917.

The illusion is to think materialistically that, being today the physical body the most perfect of man’s present vehicles, it is the only one and that therefore matter is an image of perfection! But this is not so, for such perfection of the physical body is only transitory. The fourth stage among seven stages.

The physical body was created through the sacrifice of the Thrones, the Spirits of Will, already on Ancient Saturn: at that time it was composed of an egg of warmth enshrouded of the will substance of the Thrones themselves. Then were formed the sense organs. Then on the Ancient Sun it became gaseous and the glandular system was added; onthe Ancient Moon it became liquid and the nervous system was added; that is why today, in the fourth planetary metamorphosis of the Earth, it reaches perfection on the physical-solid plane by completing the systems of organs with the skeleton.

The physical body is today the most perfect in human evolution because it is the most ancient, having gone through four metamorphoses. It is the work of art of the Spiritual Hierarchies in Creation.

But precisely for this reason, it cannot go beyond its present physical existence, to do so it must transform itself into something else, transcend itself through the spiritual world. It is the human soul and spirit that contain the future potential of evolution. Respecting the occult law “blessed are the last who will be the first”, in fact the physical body itself will be the last to be perfected. In the seventh metamorphosis of the Earth, the Future Vulcan, the Ego will have transformed the physical body into Spirit-Man. It will come last and will be far more sublime than the material physical body is today.

Undoubtedly, if we consider without prejudice the wonder of our physical organization, we must admit that our body structure is much wiser than anything that can be shown in our inner life, although we can hope that it will advance from its present imperfection to increasing perfection. We can hardly come to any other conclusion, even without clairvoyance, if we simply look impartially at the observable facts.

– Rudolf Steiner, GA 59, Metamorphosis of the Soul, Volume 2: Eighth Conference: Human Consciousness, Berlin May 5, 1910.

There is a spiritual economy that allows everything that has been penetrated by the experience of the material world to return to the spiritual world, enriching it and in turn bringing the new to the material plane. If, on the other hand, there were not a spiritual world that disposes of the future experiences of the beings that compose it, the material world would constantly repeat itself in the same. This is not the case. The continuous accumulation of experience from the material world to the spiritual world is the moral principle underlying evolution.

The life of man, through reincarnations, always finds new conditions of life suitable for his evolution. This is also how the other kingdoms of nature evolve: during decomposition, the elementals, which are the life of the elements, detach themselves from the body of minerals, plants and animals, charged with the experience of past life, and return to nature and the subtle bodies of the Earth. In the spiritual world the experience of life is converted into a project of new material life, subject to ever new experiences. And so on, bringing to completion the process of evolution towards a growing spiritual perfection which for minerals consists of becoming vegetables, for vegetables of becoming animals, for animals of becoming men. So man will become an angel.

The soul is temporary because it tends toward evolution toward the spirit. If understood as the astral body, nothing will remain of it that has not been incorporated into the Spiritual Self. If understood as a triple soul, nothing will remain of it except what will pass to the Ego and thus to the triple spirit. If understood as the Ego, then it is true that it will remain “until the end of days,” but not beyond, for beyond the metamorphosis of the Future Volcano, when we pass through our stage of Exousiai or Elohim, the Ego will be our lower member, which we will then abandon in subsequent evolution evolving the Holy Spirit as the upper member.

The evolution of the bodily members is always towards the soul members, and of the soul members towards the spiritual members, so that progressively the upper pole in the quaternary occult constitution assumes the role of the soul at higher and higher stages, while the central element in the seven-fold constitution is one and there are three central ones in the nine-fold one. The soul is therefore in continuous ascent towards the spirit, since the spirit itself is in continuous ascent towards the divine.

I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

– John 14:6

What will remain in Eternity, outside of cosmic evolution, is therefore the Trinity of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, that is, we can also call them “divine body, divine soul and divine spirit.


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