Easter 1991 – Christian Rosencreutz in relation to Easter
This Easter, as a result of suggestions from a number (in the community – editor), we took up thematic material concerning Christian Rosencreutz in relation to Easter. Since Rudolf Steiner’s death day fell at the same time, we also took up Rudolf Steiner’s life.
We took up 1911 in Rudolf Steiner’s life. We shared the fact that he had to sever his relationship with the Theosophical Society.Notable was that he took up the theme of the Bodhisattvas – Buddha. He noted the singular incarnation of the Christ and the absolute impossibility of a young boy becoming the current Christ as had been claimed by the Theosophists. The Bodhisattva-Christ theme blended with the question of the etheric and how the etheric becomes the basis for the evolution of the human soul or how the human soul transforms and evolves the etheric to the state of the life-spirit or Budhi. Confusion of Christ with Jesu Ben Pandira, with this Jesus, was spoken to. The singular and important reality of Jesu Ben Pandira was addressed. He appeared as one of the numerous incarnations of a Bodhisattva who will become our guide later as the Maitreya Buddha.
On Good Friday afternoon, we took up The Mysteries, the incomplete poem by Goethe. It seems to me worthwhile to write a few words about this poem. I would like to share a few thoughts about the significance of how this initiation of Christian Rosencreutz appeared in the soul of Goethe. Rudolf Steiner points to the fact that it is Goethe who gives us the memory of this thirteenth century incarnation and initiation of Christian Rosencreutz in a mystery center somewhere in Europe. From the indications of Rudolf Steiner, this circumstance, this initiation was overshown by the Buddha and other initiates. At the initiation, we have an instreaming of the wisdom elements from the seven reincarnated Holy Rishis of ancient Indian times. At this initiation, we are told of five other initiates. There were twelve initiates all together. As noted, seven were the reincarnated Rishis. Four of the latter five were leaders in the post-atlantean cultural epochs. The one and last initiator carried the impulse of the present, the element of consciousness soul.
When, as just mentioned, the seven Holy Rishis were again active, we have the working of the etheric archetypes of man that were brought over from the Mysteries of Atlantis. These ether bodies worked and shone into the life of the Rishis. These etheric archetypes were poured into the ether body of Christian Rosencreutz at the time of his initiation. We can follow these etheric archetypes backwards from Atlantis to the Solomonic-Kingly impulses which were brought over from the Old Moon Evolution. In these ether bodies lie a potential for the instreaming wisdom of the Old Moon. The Solomonic-Kingly Moon impulse is carried into the etheric bodies of the Atlantean initiates and then into the Rishis and now this wisdom element was infused into the ether body of Christian Rosencreutz. In addition, we can consider the working of Zarathustra and Hermes in this ether body. We might contemplate the work of Apollo in this ether body at the time of initiation. The initiator contributing to the ether body – for the future I can not conjecture.
Next, it seems to me that it is a possibility to ask how was Christian Rosencreutz initiated? What we have been told by Rudolf Steiner was that he was a very young man. He grew up and was tended in an extremely sensitive fashion. He was delicate and came to a point where he no longer could consume food. He had to be nourished solely by what came to him by his senses. I surmise that for almost three days, he lay in a death-like condition. At this time, I gather that his higher members were outside of his body. During this time, like the southern initiations, the twelve initiators worked into his ether body. I gather that the imaginations in the souls of the initiators passed through the senses or in relation to the physical body. The imaginations were placed (intoned) into his loosened etheric organization, but placed so that they could pass into the physical body and irradiate the astral body. At this time, the picture I live with is of the twelve working into this semi-unconscious human being. It is an initiation where a zodiacal (astral) impulse is brought to this individual and placed in the ether body by the twelve initiators. This to me bespeaks the fact that the initiators imprint the etheric organism with rejuvenating impulses so that the etheric can work into the physical sense life of Christian Rosencreutz. The wisdom working of the Rishis, the cultural impulses of the other five, suggests to me that what the etheric body does was being transformed to receive the astral of Christian Rosencreutz, but also to work into the physical body – a body already very delicate. Christian Rosencreutz was enlivened in his etheric organization which had been withdrawing from the digestive-nourishing system. A new digestive nourishing was necessary for further life, as well as an awakening in sense life. This is new for the initiated who has to bring the past to the present and lay the basis for the future.
If we then ask what type of a body is this, I take it we are dealing with what we call the phantom body. This is a “transparent body”. Rudolf Steiner speaks of the human phantom as being born on the old or in Saturn evolution. It is there that the senses are born, giving rise to the phantom of man as a sense being. This phantom evolves through the evolution. It gives rise to the configuration and form of man. We can think of it as that which is the configuration spoken to as the ark of Noah. It also is a basis for the temple of Solomon where the configuration of the human organism can be configured to carry the Holy of the Holies so that the soul and spirit can indwell the temple-body.
This Ark-Temple phantom, sense phantom connected with digestion is in this initiation enlivened. It is transformed so that life can be brought to the senses. The senses can then become capable of working in such a ways that they can be active in the world and also give a kind of artistic rendering of this world in the process of sense experience. This makes it possible to be able to be in the world and grasp what is in the world, penetrate it and bring imaginations of the spiritual world through sense experience. This, I take it, is what was being prepared in this initiation.
We are told that Christian Rosencreutz does not live long thereafter. I understand that he died at about twenty. This is in the time when the sheaths of the soul are being constructed in the body. All of this I would surmise as the fact that the physical-etheric-astral organization is unfolding. These bodies were worked into and transformed by the twelve by their giving imaginative knowledge for the astral body, inspirational content for the etheric body and the beginning of intellectual content for the physical body. The phantom as body is structured – it becomes a temple – an arc which can be resurrected for the soul. The senses have to become rejuvenated so that the veil of maya can be penetrated while here on earth. The Buddha impulse with the emphasis on maya here is being reversed. The Buddha path becomes soul content which can be brought to the temple for the awakening of the Holy of Holies. This process we can consider helps to bring the mighty domain of the Holy Spirit, the spiritual domains, into relation with the sense world.
If we now then view this initiation as a re-enlivening of the senses – the original phantom of man – for entry into the world of life in the sense world, we then are entering the world of the Nirmanakaya, where the Buddha is at work. We can see why Goethe could find his way towards such an initiation. We can further consider that this initiation stands behind and in relationship to Goethe’s life and his own unconscious initiation. Rudolf Steiner indicates this occurred around eighteen, nineteen years of age when Goethe *was so ill. I take it that at that time he had either a gastric or a pulmonary hemorrhage. Goethe himself went through a circumstance with illness so that the archetype of Christian Rosencreutz’s initiation could approach him. Out of the memory of this illness and healing, I gather Goethe wrote the poem “The Mysteries” where the 13th century initiation is given in poetic form.
With this line of thought, we have a basis for considering the rejuvenation of the phantom of man. We have this, of course, as an archetype unfolded at the events of the Mystery of Golgotha. We can recall the Crucifixion and the Entombment. We can recall the fact that that which was in the tomb disappeared. We are given the picture that the body of Jesus disappeared from the Tomb. Christ Jesus then appeared to those who are on the way to Emmaus. They met the Individual who they did not recognize. He was then recognized at the meal time. He was recognized as the Jesus, as the configuration, the form of Jesus, when the disciples were eating. This revelation of the phantom form at eating, the articulation of the new human phantom form into the human being in the process of eating, in the presence of the archetype of the phantom created by Christ, through the Jesus – it seems to me that we have this portrayed here in this initiation. By this means, we have in more modern times, in the life of Christian Rosencreutz, in the life of this human being, the reenactment of the event, of the events of the disappearance from the tomb and the reappearance to the disciples with the breaking of the bread at Emmaus. Of course, we are told from Rudolf Steiner that there was actually a consuming of the physical body of Jesus. The earth consumed the body at that time by an earthquake. So that in fact, the body did disappear. The physical body, as such, did and was consumed by the earth. We also can consider with this consuming of the body that there is a kind of a physical burial with the earth receiving the substances of this body. There was also a liberation of the phantom organization of the Christ Jesus. The phantom, as just noted, played a role in sense and in digestive life so that the spiritual can be apprehended in the physical body.
Thus we can consider this initiation of Christian Rosencreutz as laying a very crucial archetype for mankind at present. We can consider it working into the life of Goethe. We see that it is a potential archetype for the unfolding of the human being in a new sense directed spirituality, an enlivened inspirited consciousness in sense perception. This I gather gives rise to the new phenomenology pointed to by Rudolf Steiner in the life of Goethe.
There is another initiation, a second initiation, of Christian Rosencreutz. This is the initiation that is recorded in the Chymical Wedding. Here I think we should look at “Fama of the Brotherhood”. In the case of the 14th century incarnation – 1378 – and 15th century initiation – 1439 – Christian Rosencreutz lived for more than a hundred years. The initiation was recorded in the next century in the 16th century by Valintinus. It was then that the “Fama” was written where the initiation of the group of seven around Christian Rosencreutz is recorded.
On a number of occasions we here in the Fellowship have gone over the seven days of initiation of Christian Rosencreutz in the 15th century. We have repeatedly reviewed this seven day initiation. Christian Rosencreutz foresaw this initiation as a bodily experience. In this case, in the Chymical Wedding, we have the union between the soul, soul life, soul-spirit life, spirit and the physical organization. We have the transformation of the chem, the substance of the earth, of the alchem, of the dark earth in the union with the soul. We have here a kind of resurrective process. I gather the bodily vision was given by the phantom – this phantom has to be united with the soul by the forces at work in nature and underlying the life of the soul – etheric forces. The soul-purified and transformed enters the life process of the body and nature to unite with the phantom for a further life on earth. Through this the earth substances in nature and in man can be transformed.
When we approach this domain of the etheric, we do not use the number twelve, as in the case of the twelve initiators from the 13th century. We now need the number seven. We need to consider the seven planets, we need to consider the seven days. We need to consider the seven steps or the seven towered structure that has to be ascended in order that this etheric organization can be structured so that then the physical-phantom can be raised into this domain where the soul is actually reigning as soul, as the all-soul being of man and the world.
In previous years we have discussed this seven stepped, seven day initiation in the Chymical Wedding. This year what seems to me to be important is that we begin to consider what stands in the “Fama”, in the “Fama” of the Rosicrucians Brotherhood.
In the “Fama” we are told how Christian Rosencreutz gathered seven pupils around him. He was the eighth in relation to seven. It is told how he gathered three brothers, Ja, Jo, and Gb, around him. It was through working with Christian Rosencreutz that these three were able to receive the imaginations given by the spiritual world. Christian Rosencreutz then worked with four other brothers, PD, RC, B, and G in order that they could bring an intellectual knowing process to meet the imaginations. I gather that it is the work between the imagination and the intellectual-imaginative process that we then have the birth of the unusual figures that appeared a century or two later in the figures of the Rosicrucians. These seven were initiated by Christian Rosencreutz.
In reviewing this group of seven around the eight, the planetary numbered seven around the single eight, we have a grouping of the four and the three. Notable is that we have the higher form of man, of God addressed in the three brothers. The sounding of these three reminds me of Jehova or I could say the sounds that point to higher man. This higher man can then be brought in relationship to lower-man or to the usual four-fold make up of earthly man. The four-foldness is addressed as PD, RC B and G. Very notable is that these are all consonants. In the higher man, we hear vowels. It is as though the unutterable sounding name of the Triune Domain, that is Jehova, is expressed with the three and the lower bodily nature is expressed in the consonants with the four.
What we are told is that Christian Rosencreutz died and was entombed in a space. The space is described as sevenfold. The periphery at the circumference of the seven is, I take it a base for a triangle. There are seven triangles which meet in the center. Within this space there is an above and a below. There is that which streams into the light and that which streams into the darkness. The sevenfoldness reaches, as it were, between upper and lower man. The space is seven folded. In the center of this space is a kind of a tomb, an altar. On top lies a bronze cover – below the immortal remains of Christian Rosencreutz. His incorrupted body lies in this tomb, below this brass cover.
We are told that the altar —tomb — in the center of this room, has this brass plate inscribed in Latin. The inscription is “This compendium of the universe, I made in my lifetime to be my tomb.” We are told that this space, this room had no light, but was shone on by a sun. This sun enlightened the whole space as well as the altar. On entering this room, this space, one was also entering the door, entering into the being of Europa. We can say that this is a space in which the incorruptable remains of Christian Rosencreutz lay entombed, a being who had died, but was still present. The physical remains, a living physical remnant entombed in the space, which is also the space of the being of Europe. This is the domain where one can meet the being of Europe. This is the Being who, in a way, gives the quality that is to be found in Europe. This spiritual being is met in this space. This is a space where the eternal remains of Christian Rosencreutz are to be found. It is in this Europa, this region of the world, with these incorruptible remains, that an entire evolution is to begin. The age of the consciousness-soul is now to unfold in this region of the world. Needed is the resurrected phantom of Christian Rosencreutz. The seven are initiated as the door to the future of Europe.
We are told how those who were the brothers, I take it seven, could enter this space. It is possible to treat this space as a book. This was the space where there are inscriptions that had been etched by the deeds and activities of those who were initiated with him. In this space, with the brass plate bearing the words of Christian Rosencreutz, it is possible to remove the brass and find the fair and worthy body. This body is whole and unconsumed. The body holds a book containing a eulogy. The eulogy is as follows:
“A Grain Buried in the Breast of Jesus. C. Ros. C., sprung from the noble and renowned German family of R.C.; a man admitted into the Mysteries and secrets of heaven and earth through the divine revelations, subtle cogitations and unwearied toil of his life. In his journeys through Arabia and Africa he collected a treasure surpassing that of Kings and Emperors; but finding it not suitable for his times, he kept it guarded for posterity to uncover, and appointed loyal and faithful heirs of his arts and also of his name. He constructed a microcosm corresponding in all motions to the Macrocosm and finally drew up this compendium of things past, present and to come. Then having now passed the century of years, though oppressed by no disease, which he had neither felt in his own body nor allowed to attack others, but summoned by the Spirit of God, amid the last embraces of his brethren he rendered up his illuminated soul to God his Creator. A beloved Father, an affectionate Brother, a faithful Teacher, a loyal Friend, he was hidden here by his disciples for 120 years.”
It seems to me that what we are meeting here are those who were initiated into the mysteries of the seven. We enter into cosmic space, ethereal space where the incorruptible body of Christian Rosencreutz now remains. It is here that his book of life can be read. Here, the Akasha can be contemplated. It is possible for those who are initiated now to really contemplate his true being and his deeds. From here those who are initiated by Christian Rosencreutz, can act into the world. We also meet the spirit of Europe – the Archangel of Europe.
As we know from Rudolf Steiner, all men can look to the etheric body of Christian Rosencreutz – I take it to the phantom and the resurrected organization of Christian Rosencreutz. We can find a connection with him through this etheric, this resurrected, this phantom-ether body which can work on us.
With this said, we might now contemplate the phantom body and the resurrected body. We are told that human beings can make their way to Christian Rosencreutz. I would like to think that we can follow Rudolf Steiner’s indications of a number of individualities who worked in connection with this ether body of Christian Rosencreutz. These other individualities I consider connected with other streams, but come into connection with Christian Rosencreutz. One of these streams I would connect with the stream of Eabani-Aristotle. In Rudolf Steiner’s lectures that follow the Christmas Foundation meeting, he speaks of individualities in relationship to Christian Rosencreutz and Rosicrucianism. Rudolf Steiner speaks of a number of individualities who I would think come out of the more philosophical, Aristotelian stream. They make their way to Christian Rosencreutz. This is my surmise at the moment, It would have to be developed more fully. In these Rosicrucian lectures, given after the Christmas Foundation meeting, Rudolf Steiner refers to Raimon Lull. He was an individual who worked intensely in relationship to the cosmos. Other individuals referred to in these lectures were Amos Comenius, Pico della Mirandala, Agrippa of Nettesheim, Raimand of Sabunda and an herb gatherer. Rudolf Steiner also speaks in this cycle of lectures (January 1924) of the quiet brotherhood that gave the human physical-bodily gestures that brought movement in relationship to Christian Rosencreutz. The herb gatherer he speaks of, I gather can be assumed to be Kagutski. He is one of the last related to the elemental world of nature – and alchemy as an Aristotelian. All these are spoken of in the lectures on Christian Rosencreutz. I hope we can look more carefully at these individualities to see if we can contemplate how the Aristotelians, the philosophical impulse, the philosophical- Aristotelian, the scientific impulse makes its way to Christian Rosencreutz.
There is still another description of the Rosicrucian impulse. This Rudolf Steiner has given in the book on the Temple Legends. Here he tells how Christian Rosencreutz initiated ten individuals. These ten work in such a way that they come into contact with the imaginations of Christian Rosencreutz. In this discussion, Rudolf Steiner then goes on to discuss the Temple Legend in relationship to the Rosecrucian stream. Here we are not involved with the number twelve or the number seven, but the number ten. Here we are dealing with the number ten or the description of the hierarchical world which will and should include man of the future. As we know, this Temple Legend goes back to the Legend of Cain and Abel. It brings all that is of the domain of the astral, the etheric in relationship to the ego. The legend does not seem to point to the story of the phantom body or the resurrected body. In the Temple Legend, the whole future of man is pointed to. The events around the Solomonic Temple lead into the future so that man can erect a temple of the entire earth. The whole of earth, the being of man, and the social processes that are involved with this, all have to be made into a temple so that the holy of holiest can be evident on the earth, in man, and in social process. As we know, the Temple Legend brings us in relationship to Hiram. It brings us in relationship to the mystery of Mani. We can say it brings us into the mystery where the soul becomes pure soul, becomes enspirited. We have to follow out the temple process so that the soul of man exists on earth, transforming earth, his own physicality, and the social process connected with this. All three have to become a revelation of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. This, I would tentatively consider to be initiation process that is spoken to as a very quiet initiation process that occurred somewhere in Europe. This initiation is referred to in the 1924 lectures – the fifth lecture. It does not say specifically that the initiator is Christian Rosencreutz. I would like to assume it to follow out this line of consideration. This may be related to the initiation of the 14th century incarnation. The initiation occurred somewhere in Middle Europe in a very quiet way. I would like to consider this as another initiation in the work of Christian Rosencreutz. It occurred on the etheric plane. I will assume that it is associated with the erecting of the temple, making the whole of evolution into a temple process where one can say, the Godly, the Triune element can become manifest. I take it this temple is now not the ark, not the Temple of Solomon, but the Temple of God. It is the temple which was that which was foreseen, when the impulse of wisdom that flowed over from the Moon could anticipate the coming of the impulse of the Sun or the Impulse of Love, so that the temple could also be an indwelling of that Sun principle and lead that onto what we call the region of the Holy Spirit. Or, we can say, to the Pentecostal inflaming from the region of the Holy Spirit, from the region of Lucifer. This is the impulse of freedom, of the building and construction which comes out of the individualization of each human being who can come into the region of freedom. Such individuals can begin the process of constructing the temple, from the earth, man and the social process. This latter initiation process brings the Rosicrucian stream into the domain of the Holy Spirit. I take it that this is where we have to speak of the inspirited body – not the phantom body, not the resurrected body, but the inspirited body. This latter body I would speak of as the body of the word – the Logos body. One can almost say it is the body built out of the Logos in knowledge.
Perhaps in our next efforts of Easter, we can continue this path, seeking the region of the Holy Spirit as it becomes manifest in the festival of Freedom, the Festival of Knowledge, the festival of World Temple building, that is the Festival of Pentecost.