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Lectures from 1951

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The Sin of the World

Unrevised Lecture by Willi Sucher - 14 September 1951, Wemyss Bay


This concerns the planet Mars. We have already spoken of Saturn and Jupiter. We saw Jupiter in Ram at the Baptism, confirming Johns words, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world. This holds a significance of which I will speak today.

What is the sin of the world? We shall try to see how the Zodiac, as the eternal expression of the divinity, was creative in external evolution. We have also tried to see how the Zodiac is creative in the human head, which as it is now is the outcome of a long period of evolution, though it came into existence very late and immeasurable cosmic evolutions were necessary to evolve it. We recognized it as the Tao symbol of the Divine Architect and also the symbol of the Masons Tool.

Sounding through this cosmic sphere was something that we can only imagine in such a symbolic form. Rudolf Steiner works out the three great stages of pre-Earth evolution in Occult Science, calling them Ancient Saturn, Ancient Sun and Ancient Moon. In turning to the Saturn condition of evolution, we find that only physical existence came into being in a very primitive form, both lifeless and unconscious, while the world of spiritual hierarchies stood around encircling the birth of this new being. This Divine circle was the origin of the Zodiac, which is the symbol of the creative choir of the Divine hierarchies. After a cosmic night, we come to the Sun evolution, when this physical being was endowed with life; and again, after a cosmic night, we are guided further to the Ancient Moon condition, where further endowment of consciousness was kindled.

Meanwhile, the creation spread out into manifold and many diverse conditions of existence. Now with the Earth evolution, we have arrived at the moment when not only the kindling of consciousness is achieved but the human being is also endowed with the I of self-consciousness. This is our fourth stage.

At a certain moment, the faint fluid indications of the human head in Saturn could be seen. Although lifeless, it reflected the surrounding spiritual beings, creating the foundations for the future human head. It was a mask, in a way, but more like a reflecting automaton, similar to the way a mirror reflects the surrounding life without having individual existence itself. With the Sun evolution, the life element was added. Please take all of this symbolically, for there was no real human head, only the creative possibilities. We take for granted the human eyes, eyebrows, nose in the middle, forgetting that it is the sign of the Ram: ^.

It is a miracle that we ignore; but if we could penetrate to the creative forces contained behind this formation, we would reach the hierarchies who evolved them. We know nothing of the functions of the hind brain. We dont know enough about the optic nerve and its mysterious functions; only if we penetrate to this reality with higher capacities can we recognize it.

In Ancient Moon evolution, consciousness was infused into humanity, and we then have the majestic picture of the potential human head infused with consciousness. Consciousness means that a gap appears between the onlooker and the object that is then regarded. This evolutionary step contained the danger that human beings, unlike the animals, would become detached from the universe and thereby develop a primitive egoism, which even so prevails to a certain extent in animals.

From Rudolf Steiners writings on human evolution, we learn how certain spiritual beings during our evolution were delegated to take the lead in this development, and they brought about a split. These were the luciferic powers that were exposed to humanity by the hierarchies and which brought about a kind of cosmic Fall. This split came about in the Ancient Moon evolution and spread across the whole cosmos. There was a body of beings who did not follow the universal detachment, while the Moon world hardened and gave humanity the opportunity to have self-consciousness. These were the luciferic beings, the masters of the Temptation, who worked and brought about the Sin of the world.

Now something else has happened in the cosmic world, for it meant that the harmony of the sphere of the head was disturbed, and an indication of a body first drops out of that sphere, which has something like the tail of a fish.

The human being could be imagined as a round ball with a round head. We take the elongated form of the human being for granted, and therefore we lose its origin. This is the tragedy already prevailing at the time of Christ: that humanity had lost the Divine archetype and its connection with the Divine creative forces. If this had continued, we would have shrunk and hardened into futility. However, Christ brought down the Divine archetype to live in the body of Jesus, and as a result, it can again be grasped and lived through knowledge, through deed, and through inner contact with the Christ Impulse. In this falling away and deviation, we have the Sin of the world. This form we find in ancient monuments, one of which is found on the remains of the Druid Temple at Clyde Bank in Glasgow.

We can imagine how out of this that what we regard as the human form was created on Earth. Such details of Ancient Moon evolution will be worked out in future installments (see Isis Sophia II, Outline of a New Star Wisdom). We can return to the ancient Persian culture when Zarathustra spoke of Ahura Mazdao, the mighty Being in the Sun. He saw another Being known to us as Ahriman. The Sun Being was the external, the moral, Being or Master of Light. Ahriman drags humanity down, working in darkness and through coldness in order to deprive human beings of enthusiasm, turning them into machines. Ahriman is a mighty Principle working against Ahura Mazdao. Zaruana Akarana was the Persian name for the Zodiac, which, as the totality of the Father Divinity, held these two Beings in His hands.

The Persians experienced Ahura Mazdao in the seven higher constellations of Ram, Bull, Twins, Crab, Lion, Virgin, Scales and Ahriman in the five lower constellations of Scorpion, Archer, Goat, Waterman and Pisces.

In our head we are in the cosmos, while in our lower metabolism we are on the Earth. This we can see in the figure in the Zodiac, where the higher half of the figure is in the light constellations and the limbs in the dark constellations.

Mars constitutes the memory of Ancient Moon. It is a monument in the cosmos, pointing back to that time. It also exerts its influences on people by working into the blood and breathing systems during embryonic development, preparing for self-consciousness. Mars brings about that strife in us wherein we can distinguish ourselves as separate from an object, and by this constantly created tension we have the opportunity to awaken self-consciousness.

To watch the movement of Mars through the sky also means entering into and listening to the wisdom of Mars speaking of the Fall. The Wisdom Word of Mars explains what happens in the human realm. Let us look back at the Events in Palestine through the three years ministry of Christ. Mars explains to us what prevailed on the Earth as the Sin of the world. Christ brought the cosmic archetype of the human being to Earth, with the whole Zodiac and forces of the planets. He did not follow the events in the sky, but He answered the problems of the planets and stars and fulfilled the consciousness of the I AM on Earth.

We will now work out the movements of Mars during those three years from the Baptism, when Mars was in the constellation of Ram and in conjunction with Jupiter, just after 6 January 31 AD.

Jupiter starts on a new cycle of evolution from its point in Aries. It takes much inner activity to understand the language of the stars. You will not find what I tell you in general astrology. These things cannot be pulled down into practical life without great sin, for we deliver what is sacred into the hands of Lucifer and Ahriman the hands of human egoism. We must be reserved and silent, as it means hard inner labor, such as Rudolf Steiner underwent, to discover these profound mysteries and hear the language of the spheres.

We know that the Kyriotetes had carried the archetypal human head into being, and that Mars had to prepare the human ancestor to achieve consciousness through strife. Mars would try to cover up the forces of Ram at such a time, through the fire of rebellion and by hiding the mysteries of Ram through dispute and disharmony, though still working in the direction of evolution. By holding back and creating tension, Mars strengthens the forces that would pull forward in evolution. That was the time of the Temptation, immediately after the Baptism.

Perhaps we can imagine the brain in the darkness of the head as something like a blackboard on which the earthly world prints its messages by way of the medium of the senses. Through this activity, we create a world of illusion and thereby we achieve a certain independence from the cosmos and from the outer world and a feeling of selfhood. Mars has brought this about. Thus we obtain objective information through our senses and translate them into concepts. However, if we can speak of this blackboard, isnt even the blackness an illusion? Arent we living in a world of ready-made concepts? We do not penetrate to its core. It is Mars in Ram that reveals that there is another temptation: that of the lie, of a deliberate misrepresentation. This is found in modern science. Science continuously reaches the borders of the spiritual world and yet refuses to recognize it. These two great opposing forces of Jupiter and Mars were both present at the time of the Temptation: Lucifer, the Master of Illusion, and Ahriman, the Master of the Lie.

Mars moves on to Lion in a superior conjunction with the Sun. When we see the human form in the Zodiac, we realize that Lion works into the region of the human heart, and again Mars tries to cover up these forces. The Master of Illusion cries, Forget the heart! and indicates that future evolution is cut off. The human head is a product of the past and has passed through decadence. It is a shrunken relic of the cosmos the oldest member of the human body. This head has to be sacrificed to bring about the future, while the heart must become the head.

Our head has become the one-eyed and color-blind onlooker all that is left of the wonderful cosmos that once was. However, the heart is still youthful and holds the capacity of a connection with the whole cosmos. We breathe 25,920 times in 24 hours. This relates to the years of the movement of the precession of the vernal point through the Zodiac. Therefore, the heart is alive, and the head must die. But the Master of Illusion whispers, Forget that! Become your own self. Become selfish. Retain what you have gotten and keep it for yourself. Was not John the Baptist beheaded after this conjunction of Mars and the Sun in Lion? Lucifer would say, No need to sacrifice your head.

John was obviously on good terms with Herod and could have escaped his fate. Herod came to see and talk with him, but Herodias interfered and demanded Johns head. In fact, John really sacrificed his head. Overlooking the dark aspect of Herodias and the tragedy, John performed a deed of significance for the whole of humanity. He sacrificed the old, as we all must do to recreate the new. We must make our heart feeling so crystal clear that we can live in any community.

John sacrificed his physical head, but by doing so he became the spiritual guide of the twelve apostles. The insertion of this story for the Gospels were most artistically conceived shows the significance of it with the feeding of the five thousand, which followed immediately after it. The Spirit of John the Baptist, out of the sphere of the heart, lived spiritually after his death among the Apostles.

Mars is the objective announcer of Events, an interpreter, but not an instigator of events, as is the function of all the planets. Mars then moved forward to the Event of the Feast of Tabernacles. We remember the confusion, the division, and the outcry both for and against the Messiah. The Tempters now come toward Christ and lead Him toward the Events of Golgotha. Thus we can read through the Events of Mars and its movements, the Sin of the world and how Christ takes on the Sin of the World Himself and transforms it.

Answers to questions:

  1. We can no longer become social with the forces of the head, but only with the heart do we have the possibility of going out to other beings. The Spirits of Motion endowed us with the capacity of consciousness, with a soul and our astral body. However, the luciferic beings took hold of this and disturbed it, though the spiritual powers permitted it for the sake of our freedom. The luciferic powers are powerless alone to establish a universe and need human beings. They were only delegated to tempt, with the potentiality of creating a separate universe. There really was a sacrifice for the sake of human evolution. The difficulty is to translate spiritual realities into human language. Lucifer's cosmos was the starry world. Ahriman aimed at solidifying the Earth. Inevitably, they took hold of human beings as well.
  2. The embryo is really the Sin of the world, for the ovum has a cosmic character. It swims in the water and has descended into Ancient Moon. Christ overcame Lucifer at the Temptation, and Ahriman at Golgotha (death and resurrection). For us this only becomes possible if we partake in the Being of Christ. Not I, but Christ in me. However, so far we are removed from that; as far as we are removed from the Christ realization in our being, so far are we subject to Lucifer and Ahriman. Then again, the potential to realize the Christ in us is in us.
    If we could telescope our incarnations, we would realize more. Inasmuch as we even absorb but a little of Christ, so can we continue. Ahriman and Lucifer will be overcome in the totality of time, but it is our individual effort that must complete it in actuality.
    At the time of these Events, Saturn was in Twins, indicating the cell division and individuality that realizes consciously the I. Saturn is calling, Seek, humanity, for the I AM. When Mars passes through the lower dark constellations, these are recorded in the Gospels. We cannot expect the greatest Event of Earth evolution to be simple. If we would really listen to what goes on in the Heavens, it would be a guidance, an enunciation for moral deeds on Earth. This is quite different from the making of destiny. The stars are quite objective, and we need their Wisdom to bring our house in order here on Earth.


©Astrosophy Research Center 2012 ‒ ISBN 1-888686-11-1
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