Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Review: Pastoral Medicine (On Autism and Clairvoyance)

Pastoral Medicine: The Collegial Working Of Doctors And Priests: Eleven Lectures Delivered In Dornach In September Of 1924 Pastoral Medicine: The Collegial Working Of Doctors And Priests: Eleven Lectures Delivered In Dornach In September Of 1924 by Rudolf Steiner
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Two types of mental abnormality:

The clairvoyant. St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross characterize this type. Their "I" is disconnected from the lower bodies, causing them to have dim senses and to be able to notice fine details of things. They initially experience a kind of "presence," but it can progress to a waking experience of the spiritual worlds. This can come with illness, since for it to happen, the I needs to "suck up" the astral and etheric bodies from the physical body. It can occur in the gut. But the illness often is "perpetually cured" in a kind of stalemate. This "cure-force" can even affect others around them, giving the legend of miraculous cures around saints and the relics of their bodies.

The psychopath. This type of person has an I that has "sunk down" in the lower bodies. This causes a lack of will, responding to people with rants about random details instead of answering questions, wandering, a massive attention to detail, and an affinity for the sound of certain words. They are often very clever in the first seven years of life, but this is a sign that the I has descended prematurely. As such, too much "astrality" can descend into the organs, over-charging them, so to speak. This causes an "insensitive" body. The etheric body is not doing its job of separating and linking astral and physical. This person, in a nutshell, is resting in the occult forces of the physical world where the clairvoyant is resting in the spiritual world. The psychopath has "gone beneath" everything; the clairvoyant has soared above it. They are mirror pictures of each other.

For the person worried that they're a "psychopath," I sympathize. I suspect that autism has a lot to do with it, and I have high-functioning autism. But there is hope. The idea is that you need to strengthen the I. This would not only make life more bearable, but it would perhaps let you experience the other side, the condition of clairvoyance (in which the I, astral and etheric bodies are stronger). Elsewhere, Steiner gives several pieces of advice for strengthening the I. Here are some of them:

- Spending thirty minutes only thinking about something you have chosen to think about, and nothing else.

- When making a decision, weigh the pros and cons in your head so that they each speak to you as if they were making their case. Then, choose the stronger case.

- Suppress wishes just for the sake of suppressing them.

- Make judgments of people independent of how they relate to yourself. Judge from how their actions fit together.

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