Every complete system of the spirit has seven parts. As students of anthroposophy know, humans are currently in the fourth large stage of evolution. And because we are only in the fourth stage of evolution, it may be challenging to understand how the fifth through seventh stages may be so incredibly different in dimension and consciousness. The subsequent stages are much more that a reorganization of the elements we experience in the fourth stage of evolution.

Machines are devices that devolve humans and separate them from nature and their natural being and are a cheap substitute for true transcendence and unity with the wisdom of the world and the cosmos. Human contemplative thinking calls us back to ourselves in an experience that is qualitatively different from when we are engaged in logical analysis or problem-solving. In contemplative thinking, we enter our own interior sacred space, which is characterized by stillness and receptivity towards an inspiration transcendent of the analyzing, problem-solving mind. No machine can do this.

The true mind is in the heart, and it is only when it takes its place there that we regain our connection with the world and the cosmos. When we center ourselves in that deeper intelligence of the heart, we are also centered in our essential freedom. It is, above all, the inner quality of freedom that should guide us as we go towards a future in which it seems we shall be increasingly hemmed in on all sides by an ever more pervasive machine “intelligence” which, while purporting to serve us, ties us into ever-greater bondage.

The fiery spear of Michael is a spiritual tool that is used to hold Lucifer (dragon) at bay so that his evil might be changed to good. This type of outcome makes the spear and sword of Michael into a spiritual weapon that vanquishes evil and leads the battle for the good. But to apply that type of spiritual logic to the spear that pierced the side of Jesus on the cross is difficult for some to understand.

It takes faith to develop the capacities to believe that there is a spiritual world or that there is life after death, let alone the belief in repeated human earth incarnations, or what is generally called reincarnation. It takes a willingness to believe that human karma and reincarnation exist. The modern materialistic thinker has no proof that an after-life exists or that spiritual beings populate a realm where human beings can live after death.

Modern science does not recognize the four elements of fire, air, water, and earth. The solid, liquid, and gaseous forms of matter are not elements. The Greek concept of nature was based on the recognition of the four elements. Somewhat as a fifth, ether was added. Aristotle said of ether: “It is that which is different from earth, water, air, and fire; it is eternal and eternally revolves in a circle.” The elements have their origin in the center, the ethers in the periphery. The former are central, the latter peripheral; the former are point-like, individual; the latter universal, comprehensive. Mathematically speaking, one could say they relate to each other like plus and minus, positive and negative.

“The time will come…when quite different tendencies will come up … and people will say: It is pathological for people to even think in terms of spirit and soul. ‘Sound’ people will speak of nothing but the body. It will be considered a sign of illness for anyone to arrive at the idea of any such thing as a spirit or a soul. People who think like that will be considered to be sick and – you can be quite sure of it – a medicine will be found for this. . . . The soul will be made non-existent with the aid of a drug.