Ancient myths : their meaning and connection with evolution by Rudolf Steiner

By Rudolf Steiner

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The Egyptian of the Osiris-age, especially of the earlier Osirisage, said as follows: ‘The true human being only enters me with puberty, for I then take in what formerly I saw in Imaginations. ’ In the doctrine of the Old Testament this was transformed into the conception: The Elohim or Jahve have breathed into man the living breath (Odem), the air. There the essence was lifted out of the direct living experience and became doctrine, theory. This was necessary, for only so could mankind be led — and that is the meaning of the Old Testament — be led from that living in union with the outer world, which still had an inner connection between the microcosm, man, and the macrocosm, the world, to their further evolution (of which I will speak later).

Rhea and Chronos are described as Titans — What are they actually? Now for some centuries mankind has lost practically all consciousness of what lies at the foundation of all this. Let me remind you that you know how a few hundred years ago the human being was brought into connection with three fundamental elements. You can still find this knowledge in Jacob Boehme and Paracelsus, even up to the time of Saint Martin. Jacob Boehme still gives: Sal == Salt; Mercur == Quicksilver; Sulphur == Sulphur.

To look back in this way to earlier ages when the Gods walked among men, had a distinct reality for these ancient peoples, since they knew that the human being stood as microcosm to macrocosm in a different way from in their own time. The old atavistic clairvoyance actually faded away in the fourth post-Atlantean epoch. This was what it was sought to express through the Greek mythology, what it was also sought to express through the Osiris-mythology of the Egyptians. Lecture II 5th January, 1918.

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