Just let us look more closely at all those people who today with special eagerness are seeking a spiritual helper, those who, inwardly uplifted, are awaiting him. In their opinion they themselves are already thoroughly prepared spiritually to recognise him and to hear his word!
On calm observation we notice a great many factions. Christ’s Mission, for instance, affected so many people in a strange way. They formed a false picture of it. As usual, this was due to their wrong self-assessment, their presumption.
Instead of the former veneration and the preservation of a natural gulf and sharp demarcation towards their God, there has arisen on the one hand a plaintive begging which always wants only to receive, but on no account to contribute anything itself. They certainly accepted the “pray”, but refused to acknowledge that this was also coupled with “and work” – “work on yourself”.
Again, on the other hand, people imagine they are so self-reliant, so independent, that they can do everything themselves, and with a little effort even become Divine.
There are also many people who only demand and expect God to run after them. Inasmuch as He had already once sent His Son, He proved thereby how greatly concerned He is that mankind should draw near to Him, indeed that He probably even needs them!
Wherever one turns there is nothing but presumption to be found in all things, no humility. True self-assessment is lacking. –
In order really to be a human being, and begin his ascent as such, it is first of all necessary for man to descend from his artificial height.
Today, spiritually puffed up, he is sitting in a tree at the foot of the mountain, instead of standing with both feet firmly and securely on the ground. Thus unless he first comes down or falls from the tree he will obviously never be able to climb the mountain.
Meanwhile, however, all those who went their way calmly and sensibly on the ground beneath his tree, and upon whom he looked down so haughtily, have probably arrived at the summit.
But events will come to his aid; for in the very near future the tree will fall. When he is so roughly shaken down from his precarious perch, perhaps man will then once more come to his senses. But for him it will then be high time, he has not a single hour left to waste.
Many now think that life can continue in the old way, as it has done for thousands of years. Stretched out comfortably in their armchairs, they are awaiting a strong helper.
But how do they depict this helper! It is really pathetic!
In the first place they expect or, just to be quite correct, demand that he should prepare the way upward to the Light for each individual! He must exert himself to build bridges to the path of the Truth for the adherents of every religious faith! He must make it so easy and intelligible that everyone can understand it without effort. His words must be so chosen that their rightness will immediately convince
one and all.
As soon as man must exert himself and think for himself, then the helper is not a proper helper. For if he is called to lead and to show the right way through his word, he must then naturally also exert himself for men. It is his duty to convince men, to awaken them! After all, Christ also gave His life.
Those who think in this way today – and there are many who do so – need not begin to trouble themselves, for they are like the foolish virgins, they face the “too late”!
The helper will surely not awaken them, but will let them sleep quietly on until the gate is closed and they can find no entrance into the Light, because they cannot free themselves in time from the sphere of matter, for which the word of the helper showed them the way.
For man is not as valuable as he imagined. God does not need him, but he does need his God!
Since in their so-called progress mankind today no longer know what they really want, they will at last have to experience what they must!
As they both seek and criticise in a supercilious way, this type of people will pass by, just as even at that time so many also passed by Him for Whose coming everything had already been prepared through the revelations.
How can one possibly envisage a spiritual helper thus!
He will not budge an inch to make concessions to mankind, and wherever he is expected to give he will demand!
That man who is capable of serious reflection, however, will immediately recognise that just this strict and uncompromising demand for attentive thinking contains what is best, and what mankind, already so deeply entangled in spiritual indolence, need for their salvation! It is just by demanding spiritual alertness right from the beginning, together with an earnest volition and self-exertion for the understanding of his words, that a helper easily separates the grain from the chaff already at the outset. An automatic working lies in this, as it is in the Divine Laws. Here, too, men receive exactly according to their actual volition. –
But there is yet another class of people who fancy themselves particularly alert!
Naturally these have formed an entirely different picture of a helper, as can be read from reports. It is no less grotesque, however, for they expect him to be … a spiritual acrobat!
In any case, thousands already suppose that clairvoyance, clairaudience, clairsentience, etc., indicate great progress, which is really not so. These arts, whether acquired, cultivated, or even a natural gift, can never rise above the constraint of this earth, thus they only operate within low limits, can never claim to any height, and are therefore almost worthless.
Is that the way to help the ascent of mankind – showing them, or teaching them to see and hear, ethereal things which are on the same level as they are?
This has nothing to do with the actual ascent of the spirit, and is to equally little purpose for earthly happenings! They are minor spiritual tricks, nothing more, interesting to the individual, but utterly useless to mankind as a whole!
That all such people wish for the same kind of helper, but one even more proficient than themselves, is indeed readily understandable. –
Yet there are a great many who carry matters much further in this respect, even to the point of absurdity. And who are nevertheless perfectly serious about it.
For example, one of the fundamental conditions they impose to prove he is genuine is that a helper … must be immune from catching a cold! He who does so is already disqualified; for in their opinion this does not correspond to an ideal helper. At all events, a strong helper must as a first essential be completely above these trifles with his spirit.
This may sound fanciful and ridiculous; but it is only based on facts, and suggests a faint repetition of the former cry: “If Thou be the Son of God, save Thyself and come down from the cross!” – They are already calling out the same today, even before such a helper is in sight at all!
Poor, ignorant men! He who trains his body so one-sidedly that it is rendered temporarily insensible under the power of the spirit is by no means great or eminent. Those who admire him are like children of former times, watching with open mouth and shining eyes the antics of travelling clowns, and filled with a burning desire to emulate them.
And a great many so-called spirit-seekers or God-seekers of today are no further advanced in the spiritual field than the children of bygone days were in this quite earthly field!
Just let us consider a little further: The vagrants of olden times, of whom I have just spoken, developed themselves increasingly and became acrobats in circus and music-hall. Their skill grew prodigious, and even now thousands of sophisticated people watch these feats every day in perpetual wonder, often inwardly shuddering.
Yet do they themselves gain anything from it? What do they take away with them after such hours? Although many an acrobat even risks his life during his performances. Nothing whatever! For even at the peak of perfection all these things will always remain strictly limited to music-hall and the circus. They will always serve only to amuse, but never lead to any advantage for mankind.
Yet people now look for such acrobatic feats in the spiritual field as the standard by which to measure the great helper!
Let such people keep their spiritual clowns! They will soon enough experience where this leads! They have really no idea what they are actually pursuing thereby. They imagine that only he is great whose spirit so controls his body that it no longer suffers illness!
All such development is one-sided, and one-sidedness brings only what is unhealthy and diseased! These things do not strengthen the spirit, but only weaken the body! The balance necessary for healthy harmony between body and spirit is disturbed, and as a result such a spirit finally severs itself much sooner from the maltreated body, which can no longer provide the strong healthy resonance needed for earthly experience. But then the spirit lacks this experience, and enters the beyond while still immature. It will have to live its earth-life once again.
These are spiritual tricks, nothing more, performed at the expense of the earthly body, which should in reality help the spirit. The body belongs to an epoch in the spirit’s development. But if it is weakened and suppressed it cannot be of much use to the spirit either; for its radiations are too feeble to provide the full power that the spirit needs in the World of Matter.
If a man wishes to suppress an illness he must spiritually bring about the pressure of an ecstasy on the body, just as in a minor degree fear of the dentist may suppress toothache.
The body may be able to stand such intense stimulation once, perhaps even several times, unharmed, but not continually without suffering serious damage.
And if that is the practice or advice of a helper, he is not worthy to be a helper; for he is thereby transgressing the Natural Laws in Creation. Man on earth should cherish his body as property entrusted to him, and strive to achieve healthy harmony between spirit and body. To disturb this through one-sided suppression is neither progress nor ascent, but a decisive obstacle to the fulfilment of his task on earth, as in the World of Matter in general. The full power of the spirit as regards its effectiveness in the World of Matter is thereby lost, since this definitely calls for the strength of a physical body which is not enslaved but which harmonises with the spirit!
He who is accounted master on such grounds is less than a pupil who knows nothing whatever of the tasks of the human spirit, nor of what is required for its development! He is even detrimental to the spirit.
They will come soon enough to the painful recognition of their folly.
Every false helper, however, will have to undergo bitter experiences! His ascent in the beyond can only begin when the very last of all those whom he has held up or even led astray by spiritual trifling has come to recognition. As long as his books and writings continue to influence men on earth, he will be held fast in the next world, even if in the meantime he has come to a better understanding there.
He who recommends occult training gives men stones instead of bread, thereby proving that he has not even the faintest idea of what actually takes place in the beyond, still less of the complete mechanism of the Universe! –