Steiner Online Library Spiritual Science for Human Evolution

The Spiritual Hierarchies
GA 110

Table of Contents

  • Lecture I April 12, 1909, Morning
    • The ‘Plan of the World’ always existed. Primeval world wisdom — The Holy Rishis. Mystery Schools — Stanzas of Dzyan. Rosy cross. The Western Rishis. The Christ Impulse. Buddha and Christ. Explanation of Pain and Death — Healing. The Vision to the Stars and its meaning in olden days compared with now. Dionysius the Areopagite. The Hierarchies — Angels to Thrones and Saturn. The Bhagavad Gita.
  • Lecture II April 12, 1909
    • The Elements. Warmth is twofold, inward and outward. Fire separates light from smoke. Light is invisible. Our duty and power to release the world bewitched. During man's life he is a place of transition for elemental beings. Bhagavad Gita does not in quoted passage refer to the human self, but to the elementals. Elemental messengers of higher hierarchies. First Class are the fire elementals bound in air, water, earth. Second Class: day and night elementals released by man's activity and chained by his sloth and callousness The Third Class: elementals of the waxing and waning moon are released by optimism and chained down by discontent. Fourth Class: the summer and winter elementals are released by piety and chained by materiality.
  • Lecture III April 13, 1909
    • Earth, Moon, Sun, Saturn. Angels, Archangels, Archai. Saturn — a realm of invisible warmth. Herakleitos. On Saturn inner warmth becomes outer warmth. Production and dissolution of warmth; inhalation and exhalation of warmth — exhalation as fire; resemblance to expansion and contraction in breathing. The Rishis teaching: fire, sucked in becomes the Ego of the Archai. The Archai beginning to leave the exhaled warmth outside without re-inhaling it leads to manhood consciousness, objective consciousness and consciousness of self. Saturn dissolved by the Thrones. Pralaya or night. The karma of the Archai on Saturn brings ancient Sun into existence. Warmth divides into light and smoke or air. Archangels appear on Sun and secure a habitation. They have an inner body of warmth inherited from Saturn which divided into an inner body of light and an outer body of smoke. Exhalation, the Suns day; inhalation, the Suns night. On Sun, the warmth eggs of Saturn are hatched and pictures with inner life are produced, which were the densest bodies used by the Archangels.
  • Lecture IV April 13, 1909
    • The eggs of warmth on Saturn were created by the thought of the Archai; now-a-days thought goes no further than the astral. Evolution is a system proceeding from taking and to giving. On Saturn the Thrones gave their own warmth to the Archai, similar to the silkworms. The Archai gave personality to the warmth. The expansion of the Archangels. They are met by Cherubim. In the Sun-nights when in the atmosphere light has left the air, in the air the Cherubim reflect the figure which becomes the germ of the animal kingdom. The Zodiac.
  • Lecture V April 14, 1909
    • Old Saturn was as large as a globe having as its centre the sun of to-day and reaching as far as present Saturn. Evolution from Saturn to Vulcan. The Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones come from an earlier solar system. They have been in the vicinity of the highest godhead of all, namely the Trinity. Seraphim receive the ideas of the Trinity, Cherubim ponder over them, Thrones transform them into action. These are called the first three-fold Hierarchy. The work of the second threefold hierarchy described. The Spirits of Wisdom transformed old Saturn to old Sun and condensed Saturn to such a size that when it became Sun, it was of a size that would have its centre in the present Sun and reach as far as the present Jupiter. The planets are boundaries of the ancient worlds. The Spirits of Motion condensed the old Sun to a watery globe called Moon, whose size from the present Sun as its centre would reach to the present Mars. The creation of Moon was different from the others, it implied later a splitting into two globes so that the Sun contracted and was surrounded by another body, in the orbit of the present Mars, and in the periphery of the original single body. The origin of Evil and the Fight in Heaven. The Planetoids.
  • Lecture VI April 15, 1909
    • Uranus and Neptune are quite different from the others. The Ptolemaic and Copernican systems. The names of the Planets Mercury and Venus have been interchanged. The range and mission of the Angels, Archangels, Archai, Spirits of Form, etc. The Sons of Venus or Mercury incarnated in Lemuria or Atlantis to become the teachers of men. The Sons of Venus were Spirits of Personality, Dyani Buddhas who guided humanity in Lemuria. The Sons of Mercury guided nations and races, they are the beings of Mercury.
  • Lecture VII April 16, 1909
    • Habitations and nature of the Hierarchies (continued). Physical body of an Angel is in water, etheric and astral body of an Angel are in air and fire Spirits of Personality from Astronomical views, descended to Lemuria and ensouled the physical body Archangels from Mercury, descended into Atlantis and inspired the physical and etheric bodies. Oracles. Manu the Sun-Oracle. The Rishis In Post-Atlantis, Angels descended from Moon and ensouled physical, etheric and astral bodies.
  • Lecture VIII April 17, 1909
    • Jupiter or Sun Eagle or Scorpion. Saturn's rings. Mars or Ancient Moon. Aquarius the Waterman. Earth, Taurus the Bull, Chaldea, the ‘I am’, the voice and propagation.
  • Lecture IX April 18, 1909
    • Saturn, Sun, Moon are repeated at the beginning of the Earth. The Saturn and Jupiter of to-day. The Milky Way. Our World System is not round but bean shaped. The origin of a planet. The Zodiac and the animal forms of man's body formed on old Saturn. The Giant Ymir. Adam Cadmon of the Kabbala. If you want to understand the centre, investigate the circumference. The formation of worlds is the preparation of karma. As in big things so in small — so in the nations. The time described when one person takes on the karma of a nation. Hermes. This happens on every planet. From taking we advance to giving, e g, the Thrones, etc. It is greater to give than to receive. Man's development in Kamaloka. The astral must be spiritualised before we can see into the spiritual worlds. When the astral body is completely transformed the etheric body becomes a counterpart of it. This is Nirmana Kaya when no remnants are left in the astral world. Zarathustra penetrated the astral body of Hermes Dharmakaya.
  • Lecture X April 18, 1909
    • Leonardo's ‘Last Supper.’ Goethe. Cologne Cathedral. Matter contracts towards a central point and then disappears but reappears at the circumference. We cannot grasp this so long as our mind remains in the space of three dimensions. Uranus and Neptune have nothing to do with the creation of our world and their Moons are retrograde. Uranus, and later Neptune withdraw during the Mars development. All that lies outside us was generically called Ouranos — the Heavens. Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones are the only beings that have the direct light of God, and have had it from the beginning. The second Hierarchy see God only in His revelations. Masked priests in the Mysteries endeavoured to test, frighten, and lure the Neophyte. Between Jupiter and Mars adverse Spirits of Motion create obstacles in evolution. Some of the Angels refuse to be tempted and they join with Sun. Luciferic beings impress into the astral body of Lemurians the results of the fight in the Heavens. The Angels are the first to have the possibility of error and of evil and free will. Michael and the Dragon. The Bull of Mithra. The Spirits of Motion were ordered to throw themselves athwart evolution. During Lemuria, Atlantis, and later, the Ego was in a cloud but assailed by Luciferic Angels. Other Angels, and Archangels then came to help and guide man. They descended into the physical, etheric and astral and a being was prepared to receive the Ego. The Ego and the blood of Moses and Jesus of Nazareth. Christ never interfered with man's free will. He did nothing to propagate theory. He did not act by teaching but by His deeds and death. St. Paul. Lucifer cannot enter the Ego. The Advent of Christ. The redemption of Luciferic powers makes man stronger. It is the Truth that makes free, from this comes Love. Love can only come through Freedom. Arch-messengers or Archangels perform the tasks allotted them but man will fulfil his own task. Man will be the Hierarchy of Freedom and Love.

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"You can see from this, my dear friends, what mischief will be set on foot if the truths of Spiritual Science are withheld. For man will be exposed to the forces of evil, and he will only be protected from it by giving himself up to the spiritual life of the good. To withhold the spiritual life of goodness from men is to be no friend to humanity. Whoever does this, be he Freemason or Jesuit, is no friend to humanity. For it means handing men over to the forces of evil. And there may be a purpose in doing so. This purpose may be to confine goodness to a small circle, in order by the help of this goodness to dominate the helpless humanity who are thus led by evil into the follies of life."

—Rudolf Steiner,
Spiritual Science Notes On Goethe's Faust, Vol. II, No. 273-8.

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In 1912 Rudolf Steiner offered a “calendar of the soul” with weekly verses that express how the changing seasons in both the outer natural world and our inner lives help humanity evolve. Download and read the verses in four translations with commentary by Eloise Krivosheia of the Los Angeles Branch of the Anthroposophical Society.


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