You loving one, you who would find light and illumination in this book, – know that light and illumination has never come to any one through reading and thinking! –
The teaching I have to impart to you here is life, way and truth, but you can only receive it if you allow them to become life, way and truth in yourself.
To show you what is awaiting you if you seek to act in this manner, I deliberately hurried ahead of your present condition and tried to awaken in you now and in advance feelings which can only become true and real for you if you want to walk and bravely complete the way. This way I try to illuminate in my writings from every angle, so that it is hard to miss – it is a way I can only hint at here, and it must be lived through as it ought to be in order to attain the spiritual maturity which was already assumed here in this book when the ‘guidance’ began. –
I think, however, that for good reasons I may say that every tight attachment is wrong on the way to the spirit, even if it is just the commitment to the guidance of the guide.
Every human spirit on this earth carries within himself his own possibilities of effect, and every one will be able to walk his path most securely in his own way – even at the hand of the guide.
No room at all should be given here for the error which maintains that you should know my other teachings before this book can act as a spur to your seeking the way to eternal freedom within your innermost being.
There are those who only will walk a path after precisely visualising its every minor deviation, every hill and valley on the map – and on the other hand, there are those who only need to consider the goal to decide spontaneously to set out on their walk, unconcerned by the nature of the path.
In this way the aforementioned writings may serve, as it were, as ‘map’ to some, whilst to others they can only later become companions on their path.
Yet the nature of the work assigned to me in these days requires that everything I may give in my own forms of expression makes up a unity in itself, and thus this book cannot be separated from what I have previously imparted and what I will have to say in future.
The scree of thought has so frequently obstructed the path to the spirit that it often appears lost to the most honest and courageous seekers. – Indeed there are many today who think that everything that has ever, in the history of mankind, been spoken of the path is merely deplorable illusion. –
Just as at the foot of high mountains in the alpine world the foreign walker is surrounded by a host of guides who all promise to take him to the peak, so in our days the seeker wanting to embark on the path to the spirit is called from all sides, and each of those who calls him promises solemnly that he will take him to his goal.
All too many entrust themselves to a guidance which itself does not know the path, and I have not yet found any who have reached the goal in this way. –
It is no wonder the path to the spirit is regarded as lost when the few who have found it under certain guidance are often treated with amusement, as though they had fallen prey to pious deception! –
There is a bitter necessity to show today’s world that there is nevertheless a true path to the spirit and that the walker on this path can indeed reach his goal.
However, the walker must possess a modicum of judgement and may only embark upon this path, which is after all invested with danger, when capable of giving the guidance offered that agreement from the heart which is awoken in each human spirit on meeting true guidance – unless he has long ago lost the habit of listening to this inner confirmation. –
Many shy away from embarking upon the path because for millennia the oppression of gloomy doctrines has burdened mankind with the teaching that the path to the spirit is a path of world negation and willingness to suffer.
These doctrines have brought upon mankind catastrophe, illusion and violation of what is most sacred, and still it continues to rage…
That what is noble and good, in which name such seeds of catastrophe have flourished on earth, has truly been dearly paid for by mankind! –
It was certainly in good faith that the path to the spirit was imagined to be passable only by paying the price of ‘world negation’ – and this good faith persists…
But however greatly emphesized was the supposed necessity to flee the world in order to attain the spirit, one quickly saw oneself in all these teachings compelled to make room with much lamenting for life itself – life which is the outpouring of the spirit – and truly shows itself to be more victorious than all doctrine. – –
Let it also not be thought that such doctrines really only convey the pure, unadulterated wisdom of great teachers of mankind!
The only one who can be named in this context was that Indian royal son who believed he could not cure his decadent surroundings other than by preaching the suffering of the world whose redemption could only be attained by renunciation.
But even this one teaching still leaves, for important reasons, the question unanswered whether in the beginning it did not take on the form through which it was passed on, as the booty of a monastic brotherhood which had won a reputation for ‘holiness’ through it? –
Wherever the pestilential bacillus of quietist castration of action and the dreamy flight from the world have been nurtured in other teachings, one can be sure that one is merely encountering a false understanding of wise teachings.
In the second century of our calendar the lament was already heard that the accounts describing the life and teaching of the exalted Master from Nazareth could scarcely any longer be held to be authentic!
And what things did a subsequent age in its naivety add and take away from it! –
Despite all this, even today some things still remain which truly show anything but a teacher glorifying a flight from the world. –
It is pointless basing oneself here on the ‘word of the scripture’ – the same ‘scripture’ which caused the Master to complain that he was being called a ‘glutton and drunkard’ because he ate and drank with those who invited him – the same ‘scripture’ which narrates as his first ‘miracle’ on the occasion of a wedding when he turned water into wine after the guests, in the judgment of the steward, had already had ‘enough to drink’. – –
He who has eyes to read and does not see the battle between the deluded doctrine of renunciation of the world and the Master’s true teaching on every page of the accounts that have come down to us, a battle which took place even before the text we now know came into existence, – is beyond help!
It is a diabolic confusion of human feeling which has spread for millennia as slave of an evil morality across vast lands and successive generations, entangling man in the delusion that the path to the spirit can almost be bartered, as though one demands tribute from earth-bound life and allows no man to walk upon this path who is not willing to renounce life.
Yet as long as human spirits, who once through the choice of their own will left their ‘paradise’, must here on this earth unite with the human animal in order to find their way back to the spirit, their exalted task will always:… “Be lord of the earth and make it subservient to you!” – for only as lords and masters of their earthly existence can they in conscious action give strength to those powers needed, if they want to embark on the path to the spirit at the guide’s hand. – – –
Those who flee the life of this earth instead of learning to master it have truly not overcome ‘the world’!!
It means giving a ridiculous overestimation to the joys made possible by our existence in the body of an earthly creature, if you were to value them so highly that they might be seen as the ‘price’ for your spiritual enlightenment. –
You are making in this way your god into a ‘savage’ who allows his genuine gold – to be bartered for beads! – –
Certainly mastering the earth also means: mastering its joys; but mastering is never: – renunciation!
Like one whose whole mind is filled with a great purpose so that he still only hears his inner voice in the midst of the madding crowd, so too shall you not seek to ‘shout down’ the noise of the instincts of the animal of this earth within you, rather you shall only listen to yourself in the midst of their racket!
There are deep powers concealed within your earthly instincts, and you perceive them often enough if, more frequently than you would like, you succumb to them!
But these instincts are demanding you to be their master, and if you cannot be their master, and instead kill your instincts, you are only slaying your best servants…
You can only master your instincts when you can at any time entrust yourself with alert will to them without fearing that they could drive you further than you would be driven! –
If you have achieved this, you have won the highest resilience your earthly life can give you for your spiritual development…
You can only return into your essential, eternal spiritual being once you are able to use here all the effective powers at your disposal in this form of existence bound as it is to the animal body!
Everything else is but a dream corresponding to nothing truly real!
Many have dreamt up an ‘inner world’ in this way which often displayed all the beauty of a genuine work of poetry but also contained no other truth at all than that which belongs to fiction.
Others have sought in ecstasy to approach their eternity and believed they found it in this way.
They did not suspect that they had simply succumbed to a deceptive game of secret physical powers which they had themselves aroused and unbound through their false striving without mastering them. –
If I may counsel you as one who speaks of something he knows to its profoundest depths, – then keep well away from all teachings which rely only on mystical dreaming and the supposed ‘knowledge’ of clairvoyants; – but avoid even more all teachings which would lead you into ecstasy and into the abandonment of your fully alert consciousness!
The spirit of eternity from which your innermost being originates and in which it wants to be at home again, is the most real of all that which can be called ‘real’! –
It never reveals itself to dreamers and fantasists!
You must seek it within you with the same alertness and with the same fervour which already fills each explorer seeking to discover intuited powers in outer nature!
Yet do not seek far away from yourself!
You have got to discover your innermost. –
Most of those who claim to have sought in vain wandered far and wide; they believed they had to find something completely strange and thus they concealed from their own eyes that which was and is the nearest of all things and most genuine to them. –
Only in yourself, in the innermost part of your inner being does the path begin which will lead you to your eternal homeland!
You will certainly, if you want to find it, have to dedicate on each day a small period to inner immersion, yet you must not forget that this immersion is only of use to you if it gives wings to the rest of your daily work instead of paralysing it!
Whoever does not feel within himself; in his search for the innermost reality, the day to day growth of the powers for outer deeds and actions, is on the wrong track…
The path to the essential spirit is basically so simple that you will do well to ‘simplify’ yourself in the whole manner of your thinking and feeling!
This is the sense of the words spoken by the exalted Master when he taught: “If you become not as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” –
Most brains have become too complicated to be able to comprehend the mystery of man without consciously switching to reacting in the simplest way.
Manifold are the means you can use to awaken yourself again to spiritual life, but on reaching the goal of your efforts you will simply wonder why you did not recognise earlier what will then appears to you as the simplest of all things and the most self-evident. –
You are even now not separated from spiritual life, but still asleep in you is that simple power of recognition which could reveal it to you; and through your false belief that spiritual reality can be reached through your thinking you fail to awaken this unique power within yourself which would give answers to all your questions were it awakened within you…
What I give you here in this book are the means to awaken this power within you.
It is necessary to ‘tune’ your inner feelings ‘like a harp’ so that the pure basic chord can sound forth within you which alone can tear this power from its sleeping state.
Even if at first it only dares express itself hesitatingly and softly within you, you will never any longer be capable of losing it, if it has spoken once to your consciousness.
But do not believe that you can force it to awaken!
You can only create afresh each day the preconditions, and must tarry patiently until sooner or later awakening arrives spontaneously within you.
The most important precondition is the directing of your every thought and striving towards extreme simplicity of feeling. –
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they shall inherit the kingdom of heaven!”
– You are dragging around with you a massive weight of cerebral riches which only rob you of the free, light attitude you must maintain if you are to find the ‘kingdom of heaven’ within you!
Only in this sense should you ‘flee from yourself ’ , should you ‘lose yourself ’ so that you might find yourself in conscious reality, for your thoughts long ago became a substitute for yourself, and you do not yet know that you are yourself something different from your thinking which chokes you with its riches. –
But you should be master even over your thinking, whereas now you are today its impotent slave!
What I said earlier about your instincts, I must repeat here in the context of your thoughts:
Being master does not mean renouncing the services of one’s servant!
But your servants must never become your masters. –
Fill yourself with a calm confidence, for whoever would attain a goal must above all believe in himself and in his power to attain it! –
Do not start by asking yourself a thousand questions to which you can only receive answers when you live the teaching I give you!
Here practical action is expected of you, and the result of this action is a new being, not different thinking and believing!
Calmly let be what you might have been thinking or believing until now!
If you transform into deed and life those things I impart to you, you yourself will one day be able to tell yourself what until now was truth in your belief, and what was deception.
Questions to which you cannot give answers yourself have not even then found their ultimate answer when you hear an answer from another party…
Your whole being and thinking must find its deepest foundations within yourself. –
Maintain in you a joyful calm in every situation in life, and if you cannot yet manage this, train yourself to do it!
You will say to me that your daily work brings daily occurrences which even the wisest of men could not accept with calmness and joy.
I fully accept that it still seems to you like this today.
But you will learn to judge differently when you understand how to change yourself. – –
The things and events of this earthly life are for us only what we make of them in our imagination. –
I certainly do not expect from you that a grave fate full of suffering should freely bring you ‘joy’.
The great things in life almost never rob you of your calm; indeed, one can say that enduring difficulties even has helped many to gain the calm I commend unto you.
It is always the everyday matters of little importance which take your calm away from you; – things and events which even after a brief passage of time become most insignificant.
You should not flee from the world, and therefore you must make an effort to maintain within you a state of the soul which enables you to take everyday things with composure.
Many things you cannot change in the external existence, even if your changes were for the benefit of all.
Only inside yourself do you have an almost unlimited power, and more and more your power will prove itself to you, the more you learn to use it within you. –
No prince has ever been so foolish to expect in foreign lands the obedience he is entitled to expect in his own land.
Thus you too should not expect any more from without what you can only arrange in yourself, in your inner realm, according to your desire and will.
Certainly, external occurrences will always be capable of agitating you the first moment they collide, but the second moment should see you returned into your might, forcing all the powers within you to calmness, even though they do not want to obey your first call.
You will save yourself a lot of suffering in this way and thereby become a source of joy for yourself! –
I give unto you every teaching so that you might become a richly flowing source of joy for yourself!
I seek to awaken the ‘artist’ in you who can fashion an eternally divine image from you. –
You are yourself the ‘artist’ here and the work at the same time!
For too long now the ‘artist’ in you has delayed fashioning yourself – indeed, you forgot a long time ago that it is you yourself alone who can bestow upon yourself your eternal form.
You have always regarded the form you were given by chance from without as an unavoidable necessity.
I would see you free of such belief!
What befell you externally by way of the favour or disfavour of the stars is not a ‘fate’ you cannot escape – rather, it should spur you towards supreme tension so that you might bend favour and disfavour alike to your exalted goal! –
The ‘artist’ within you uses his material for fashioning just as he finds it, and his art is demonstrated by making use of both the advantages and the disadvantages of his material to serve his work in the best way. –
You must yourself only learn to feel within you the ‘artist’ of this work, even though hitherto you have believed you needed to be drily calculating life in order to comply with it!
You have so much to win if you seek to follow my advice, and you can confidently tell yourself that you have nothing at all to lose.
Use this book in the manner it is meant to be used and it will be of great use to you!
You can not promise yourself any benefits from a fleeting read, rather only when your ‘reading’ has become experience for you! – –
But then, I believe, this book will become your friend, a friend you will never want to be without and who will consecrate your own house into a temple for you…
The more you learn to feel within yourself, at the hand of my guidance, the visions I show to you here, the more you will also comprehend the ultimate meaning of my words, just as, the other way round, the words seek to lead you, by reliving them, to the acquisition of these visions by the soul.
May both these paths bring blessings upon you!
May you make yourself capable of living up to that appeal which the priests of an ancient sacred temple once had carved above its entrance: