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13 Holy Nights – Part 1: 24-31 December

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The Light of the World – William Holman Hunt (1851–1853)




Following the indications regarding the Four Weeks of Advent, here are the indications given by Rudolf Steiner to his pupil Herbert Hahn to work esoterically in the Twelve Holy Nights. The translation is edited by Laura Zanutto, then revised by Mark Willan and with the fundamental contribution of a German native speaker who wants to remain anonymous. The translations have been further revised.

Essentially there are two versions of the Twelve Holy Nights practiced in the anthroposophical movement:

1. The version by Herbert Hahn, which comes directly from Steiner;

2. The version by Sergej Prokofieff, which is the result of a reworking of Steiner's Christological indications.


As we shall see, both sequences have a profound meaning that we shall see in parallel. In general we can say that Hahn'sversion proceeds according to the zodiacal sequence of the anticipation of the future year, i.e. from Capricorn-January toSagittarius-December which is essentially the sequence of incarnation (starting however from Capricorn); whileProkofieff's version proceeds according to the zodiacal sequence of the excarnation current, i.e. from Pisces to Aries. Inessence, Hahn's sequence is linked to the cycle of the year lived as an initiatory experience, that is, to the becoming sacred of Time; while Prokofieff's sequence is linked to the occult constitution in twelve limbs, which includes the ten SpiritualHierarchies (from man to Seraphim) and the two Persons of the Trinity (the Holy Spirit and the Son). The description ofAdam Kadmon's celestial anatomy, the zodiacal melotesia, closely follows Prokofieff's meditations.


In summary, in the Twelve Holy Nights, the entire history of mankind is recapitulated from the Lemurian Era, to Christmas Eve, the Ancient Feast of Adam and Eve; to Christmas, the birth of the Adamic soul of the Jesus of Luke's Gospel; to the Epiphany with the arrival of the Three Kings to the Jesus of Matthew's Gospel to arrive at the Christmas of Christ, the descent of the Solar Spirit into Jesus of Nazareth at Baptism in the Jordan. In each of these Holy Nights, the forces of theZodiac descend to Earth, starting with the Pisces, who represent incarnate humanity, and culminating in Aries, the Lamb of God, with the Spiritual Sun as Thirteenth in the Circle of the Twelve Zodiacal Signs, that is, the Son.

By "night" we mean from the sunset of the previous day to the dawn of the next day starting from the Holy Night ofDecember 24/25, to the threshold of which one will have come to consciousness through the process described in the FourWeeks of Advent. Each night brings with it a Symbol and a Mystery, which are the key to the meditation of the HolyNight in question.


To go further into the Holy Nights, you can read:

1. The 4 weeks of Advent

2. 13 Holy Nights - Part One: 24-31 December

3. 13 Holy Nights - Part Two: 1-6 January

4. Book - The Thirteen Holy Nights and Anthroposophical Christmas

5. Kristina Kaine - Kristina Kaine - The 12 Holy Nights - Part One: 24-31 December

6. Kristina Kaine - Kristina Kaine - The 12 Holy Nights - Part Two: 1-6 January

7. Rudolf Steiner - Esoteric indications on Christmas for Herbert Hahn

To the Twelve Holy Nights, we then add a final 13th Night, which although not present in Hahn's original writings, has come through oral tradition in the anthroposophical movement, albeit with different nuances and in a sense implicit inProkofieff's version.


HAHN – PROKOFIEFF – HOLY NIGHTS PHASES – ZODIAC – MONTH –ZODIAC – HIERARCHY

  1. 24/25 December – Christmas Eve – Capricorn – January – Pisces – Humanity

  2. 25/26 December Christmas / Night of John – Aquarius – February – Aquarius – Angels

  3. 26/27 December – Nights of the White Lily – Pisces – March – Capricorn – Archangels

  4. 27/28 December – Nights of the White Lily – Aries – April – Sagittarius – Principalities – Archai

  5. 28/29 December – Nights of the White Lily – Taurus – May – Scorpio – Elohim

  6. 29/30 December – Nights of the Sword – Gemini – June – Libra – Virtues

  7. 30/31 December – Nights of the Sword – Cancer – July – Virgo – Dominions

  8. 31/01 January – Nights of the Sword – Leo – August – Leo – Thrones

  9. 01/02 January – Crown Nights – Virgo – September – Cancer – Cherubim

  10. 02/03 January – Crown Nights – Libra – October – Gemini – Seraphim

  11. 03/04 January – Crown Nights – Scorpio – November – Taurus – Holy Spirit

  12. 04/05 January – Night of Grace – Sagittarius – December – Aries – Son

  13. 05/06 January – Epiphany / Night of Adam Kadmon – Spiritual Sun – All year round – Spiritual Sun – Father


General scheme of the two sequences of the Holy Nights

We will also meditate on the Zodiacal Virtues as described by Madame Blavatsky and later confirmed by Steiner together with the powers that result from the practice of the corresponding Virtue. Beware, however, the Virtues are not what the sign of the zodiac possesses from the very beginning, at the birth of the one born in the sign, rather they are those qualities of the soul that derive from the sublimation of the character traits typical of the sign. These Zodiacal Virtues are linked toHahn's zodiacal sequence, both of Steiner's indications being intimately linked to the time sequence of the rhythm of the year, with the succession of months:


Virtue to develop – Acquired Power

April – Aries – Devotion becomes Power of Sacrifice

May – Taurus – Balance becomes Progress

June – Gemini – Perseverance becomes Trust

July – Cancer – Altruism becomes Purification

August – Leo – Compassion becomes Freedom

September – Virgo – Courtesy becomes Touch of the Heart

October – Libra – Contentment becomes Detachment

November – Scorpio – Patience becomes Intuition

December – Sagittarius – Speech Control becomes Sense of Truth

January – Capricorn – Courage becomes Power of Redemption

February – Aquarius – Discretion becomes Power of Meditation

March – Pisces – Magnaminity becomes Love


The Zodiacal Virtues in order of Sign

What we dream about in the Holy Nights represents the spiritual meaning of what will happen in the waking life of the corresponding month of the following year, beginning in January (Capricorn). It is therefore important to be well awake during the day in order to prepare ourselves for the Holy Night, and at the same time to be prepared to accept the spiritual impulse in Imaginations woven by the Spiritual Hierarchies during the night. Tiziano Bellucci points out that Steinertouches on a similar theme when Steiner talks about the logs that the druids burned during the Holy Nights, forming imaginations in the fire, giving divinatory clues about the coming year.


How to meditate the Holy Nights

By virtue of what has been said, in the Thirteen Holy Nights, 12 + 1, the possibility opens up for those who are on the esoteric path of spiritual science to prophetically experience the events that will happen in the year to come. Such revelations can come in two ways: unconsciously, that is, through dream activity, or consciously, through meditation.Only those who are on the esoteric path are allowed to experience both modes, dreaming and meditative.

As for the unconscious mode, since the activity of the etheric body is less disturbed by the impressions of the senses in this early winter, at the moment of falling asleep, the lower pole of the physical-etheric body opens to the impressions ofthe Hierarchies. The dreams made in these Holy Nights will therefore be taken as dreams by the content, at least in part, premonitory.

As far as the meditative mode is concerned, it is necessary to prepare oneself during the day, with a waking consciousness well awake and directed towards the atmosphere of the Holy Night that one will experience, reading Steiner's instructions. The vigil before the Holy Night itself represents the Advent of the single Holy Night. Once the sun has set or before you fall asleep, you have to create enough space and time to meditate, according to the stages:

1. Concentration, through the liberation of the inner space from soul instances (wandering thoughts, contrasting emotions, cravings etc.);

2. Imaginative meditation of the Symbol and Mystery of the Holy Night (highlighted in bold in the translation text);

3. Erasing the imagination thus constituted and contemplation of the empty space created, with its forces;

4. Exit from meditation.

You meditate sitting down, the body relaxed, constant breathing in four steps (inhalation, pause, exhalation, pause). The room must be warm enough, silent enough so that the body becomes a support for meditation, without the sensory impressions standing out. The feet must rest completely on the ground, better if with comfortable footwear (even just socks), the whole body must be at ease. The forearms rest on the thighs, the hands slightly open on the knees. The back ofthe chair, even slightly padded, helps the back to stay straight and the head so well upright on the neck. Eyes ajar. The lighting must be similar to natural lighting.

A piece of advice: light a candle at the beginning of the meditation to sanction the beginning of the act, thus creating the space and time of "enlightenment" of the consciousness. The lighted candle can be placed in front of the meditator's sight, so that it is the first and last thing one sees. As you leave the meditation, you slowly open your eyes, remain in the meditator's position until you feel ready to dissolve the position by blowing out the candle (with a candle extinguisher or with wet fingers, never with a breath).

Make a brief note, in a chronologically ordered diary, of all the images and words that you sustain during or after meditation. The same goes for the dream images as well as for the signs and synchronicities that may come to us during our waking life during the days of the Holy Nights.


For the Holy Nights

On December 24th the 12 Holy Nights begin. The 12 Holy Nights are symbols for the 12 forces of the soul that live in us.And so this indication is valid forever, not only for the 12 Holy Nights.

On January 1st, at noon we have the Sun as close to the Earth as possible and that is why there are five and a half days before and five and a half days after, which is the time of the 12 Holy Nights.

On these evenings, the darkest of the year, we are closer to the Spirit of the Sun, and this means that the Spiritual Sunshines from the inside of the Earth, makes everything transparent and illuminates everything from the inside, not like afterwards, when the Sun illuminates the Earth from above, from outside.

One must undertake these 12 perfectly awake and well aware Holy Nights. It is important that on the first evening(December 24) you stay awake until one or two in the morning. On the other nights, if possible, trying to go to bed regularly, at the same time, it is of paramount importance to live a regular rhythm at this time; if this is not possible inactive life, one should try to do so internally; those who cannot remain silent in external life should constantly try to be inwardly aware of the sacredness of time. It is important to carry out daily tasks without losing sight of this awareness, the sacredness of time, not allowing anything unhealthy, no unpleasant, threatening or worrying movements to enter the soul, always remaining vigilant and rigorous with oneself in this sense.

During the experience of Christmas, with its 12 Holy Nights, we sow the seed for the next 12 months. Therefore these 12days are important, if for example we make mistakes on the first day, we sow a seed, which will germinate negatively in the blood in the first month.

We must try to spend the 12 holy days correctly, according to the law, because every year we need to work on our rebirth and we cannot lose a year.


Comment

It should be noted that this time of year, formed by the Twelve Holy Nights, is very special. It is in fact the difference between the Solar Year and the Lunar Year:

  • The Solar Year consists of 365 days, which carries within itself the physical rhythm of man;

  • The Lunar Year consists of 354 days, which carries within itself the physical rhythm of the woman;

  • 365 – 354 = 11

The result is a difference of 11 days, 12 if we consider the leap year. This means that the Twelve Holy Nights are therefore placed in a temporal limbo, where both time and space assume a state of stillness that is reflected in the stillness of the etheric body of the Earth and therefore of man. The Earth "holds its breath" and thus the etheric body of man remains in astate of stillness. The soul of the Earth is now towards the Center of the Earth itself, where the I of Christ resides.

Since the body of rhythm is also the body of time, when the rhythm of the etheric body slows down, there is less activity of the physical body which is therefore less inclined to imprint physical perceptions in the senses. This protects the etheric body by refining its perception, which is therefore directed towards the interior, in the supersensible. The etheric body thus becomes capable of experiencing the process that brought to completion the transition "from Jesus to Christ", as summarized throughout the year according to the calendar of holidays. This experience of the forces of Christ changes the composition of the blood, becoming progressively more permeated by the forces of Christ.

In the period of the Holy Nights there can be no lessons of the Esoteric School, as well as ritual meetings of the variousWestern esoteric orders, since the Masters withdraw to the Eternal East, the Spiritual Sun, returning only from January 7onwards. In Steiner's words:

The reason why no ceremony can be conducted in the meetings of our esoteric fraternities during the days of Christ's apparition, between December 24 and January 6, is that those we call the Wise Masters of the East retire during this period to their sanctuary in order to gather from there the strength that will be given to the whole of humanity, as well as to our esoteric fraternities.

- Quoted from an instruction lecture given in Hanover on December 31, 1911, published in Freemasonry and Ritual Work,SteinerBooks, 2007, p. 313.

If, absurdly enough, a ritual ceremony was celebrated in one of the Twelve Holy Nights, the sacrifice made would be in vain and paradoxically would go the other way. This is because the Teachers are not present and cannot pass the act of service to the Archangels. Instead, this is the time of year when it is desirable to pray and meditate, remembering the way of Abel. In fact, in the Community of Christians the Act of Consecration of Man is celebrated on each of the days of theTwelve Holy Nights.


24/25 December - 1st Holy Night - January – Capricorn

On Christmas Eve, when Christ is born into the soul, the soul asks: Can I be heard with all my weaknesses, my faults and my passions?

Symbol: The Stable of Bethlehem, in whose humility and poverty the Light of the World was born. The Voice of Silence penetrates the soul and teaches us to joyfully affirm the good in us and in others.

Capricorn. The Divine Spirit was born in the Matter. Spirit and Matter. The Alpha and Omega touch and life is born.

Mystery: The soul yearning in the darkness of a forest without paths.


Comment

December 24th, Christmas Eve, is the Christmas of the human being with Adam and Eve, in the Earthly Paradise.Traditionally, on this night, Saint Eve and Saint Adam are celebrated. This traditional recurrence reminds us that the"original sin" is not only to be remembered for the Expulsion from Paradise, but also the moment when man acquired independence from the gods, the Elohim, through the influence of light. Lucifer is the "Bearer of Light" by opening his eyes to man, an act that becomes "original sin" at the moment when this Light is held in man for his selfishness, thus confusing the messenger with the message, that is, the Bearer with the Light, the Light of Christ "Christus verus Lucifer"of the Rosicrucians. While Lucifer wants to bring the Light so that we can disincarnate, disinterested in matter, Christ comes with his Light into matter, precisely in the darkest hour in which all matter is more solid, darker.

Winter is the solidification of the being of the Year, it is the moment in which the Physical World finds itself most isolated from the condition of Earthly Paradise. This is what is indicated in the Mystery. It is the same sentiment of Dante's "In the midst of the walk of our life I found myself in a dark forest, for the straight path was lost. It is the hour in which thePhysical World shows itself in all its bare nakedness, exposing all its defects, previously covered by the magnificent blanket of Mother Nature's productions. Now Nature is dying, wandering around like an old witch (which we shall see later in the Befana). Man finds himself naked before the harsh reality of winter. Even the Stars have fallen in the form of snow. Thus, when all seems lost to man, the Light of the World is born in the Stable of Bethlehem.

Capricorn is a divided yet united being: terrestrial in its goat part, aquatic in its fish part. Its duality is not a limit but the expression of a conquest of the high and the low, whose point of union is the individual consciousness. It is the being who, alone, climbs the Mountain of initiation, succeeding in elevating himself to the depths of the ocean depths. TheSpirit touches Matter, which is condensed spirit, and from their union a new life is born, the child. To Capricorn is associated the virtue of Courage, for it is necessary to confront both the heights and the abysses. Perseverance in Courage results in the Power of Redemption, that is, the ability to spiritualize matter.


Adam Kadmon: Pisces

From the point of view of the hidden constitution in twelve members of Adam Kadmon, man, the future Tenth Hierarchy, brings the forces of the Region of Pisces. Christ is the Ichthys, the fish that makes disciples the apostles, the "fishermen of souls", especially referring to Peter and his brother Andrew. When in the Hyperborean Era, the Sun broke away from theEarth, Christ separated from the Earth: it was the Age of Pisces. The Earth became the dark half irradiated by the bright half, the Sun. When the Solar Spirit of Christ joined the Earth and became the Ego, at that moment, the seed of the future evolution of the Earth into the Sun itself was laid. This will take place when the Age of Pisces is again. The Mystery ofGolgotha anticipates the Age of Pisces, which began in 1400 and which we are still in today (until about 3500).

The Initiation of Pisces consists in the understanding of this connection between the Sun and Earth in the Age of Pisces past, present and future. Zarathustra was the Master of Wisdom who received this initiation in the Persian Epoch, which was then awakened when the I of Zarathustra experienced the same initiation as Jesus of Nazareth by John the Baptist.Man will become the Tenth Hierarchy, superior to the Seraphim, the Spirits of Liberty, at the moment when Christ, theFish, is born completely in the sea of the human soul. The removal of the Sun has had as a consequence the vertical polarization of the human organism which, penetrated by the I first and then by Christ, has made man become an erect being: the Pisces correspond in the melotesia of Adam Kadmon the feet and therefore the possibility of taking vertical relationship with the Earth.


25/26 December - 2nd Holy Night - February – Aquarius

Night of John. The Eagle of the Soul hovers high on its wings, looking back from a great height and observing its own life. Now man recognizes the laws of Karma.

Mystery: choose the narrow and difficult path or the wide and simple way. It is difficult for the one born of the flesh to find the path of the spirit.

Bhagavad Gita: a selfish life or a life dedicated to humanity?


Comment

The 25th of December is the Christmas of Jesus of Nathan's lineage, which is told in Luke's Gospel. He is the heavenly soul of Adam who, untouched by the Expulsion from Paradise, becomes incarnated on Earth for the first time. He is the child Jesus who is visited by the Shepherds, shrouded in an angelic host, a manifestation of the body of the transformations of the Buddha, the Nirmanakaya Buddha. The Angels are the ancient pagan gods who came to praise the coming of the Adam still in the form of an Angel, on Earth. The atmosphere is what in the Meditation of the FoundationStone is called Remembrance in the Spirit (Memory in the Spirit): the Shepherds in the deepest humility come to theChild Jesus worshipping him. It is the animal forces of the past, the purified astrality that recognizes in the Nathanic Jesus the Second Adam who came to Earth to redeem the human being from his condition of deprivation from the EarthlyParadise.

The Shepherds also represent the understanding of the laws of Karma, inscribed precisely in the astral body, and which must be fulfilled by overcoming the passions, that is, the flock of sheep which the Shepherds lead. It is also called theNight of John the Evangelist, represented with the Eagle, because it is from spiritual heights that one can contemplate past incarnations. John is Lazarus who has his initiation under the sign of death, the Scorpio, but is initiated by Christ himself who makes him rise, thus transforming the stagnant sign of the Scorpio into that of the pure air of the Eagle.

This meaning is also preserved in the myth with Ganymede, the cupbearer of the gods, who is kidnapped by Zeus in the form of the Eagle. The cupbearer is the one who unites all the gods at a banquet, making them share wine, the symbol of life; the gods are the forces of the Planets that act in the birth chart as well as in the succession of the seven-year-olds in the biography. Ganymede sees Zeus in his divine form and dies, becoming however eternal in the form of the constellation Aquarius. To Aquarius is associated the virtue of Discretion, that is the understanding of external limits, which when internalized becomes Meditative Power, that is the dissolution of internal limits.


Adam Kadmon: Aquarius

The Angels are the Hierarchy enlightened by the Aquarius Region. Now finding themselves in the condition that man will have only in the Future Jupiter, their inferior body is the etheric body, which in the elements corresponds to water. TheAngel in the Physical World can assume likenesses, of his own will, through water. Since the etheric body is the seat of life, the Angels take the name of Sons of Life. Both the Ancient Moon and the Future Jupiter will take place in the etheric water. In the Ancient Moon, where the densest state was the water of the etheric world, the Angels passed their human stage. The man who was in the animal stage, received from the Angels the liquids of his body, blood and sap. The etheric body is also the seat of memory, so that the Guardian Angels are carriers of the future memory of each individual man.

It was John the Baptist who received the initiation of Aquarius, being himself such. He could perceive the Earth as transparent, thus seeing the reality of Christ. Baptism served to make men experience a momentary detachment of theetheric from the physical, so that they too could contemplate the Sun that would come into the world. The Baptist used to stand with his legs in midwater: the legs are the part of man's body associated with the Aquarius, the two columns that rise, raising and detaching man from the Earth.

The Guardian Angel is God in the eyes of the profane. In truth he is the comparison that man will come to be in the FutureJupiter: the Angel is the image of the Spiritual Self (Manas) that is reflected in the astral body. Such is the image ofAquarius. The Age of Aquarius (which will begin in about 3500) will be the time when the Spiritual Self will come to mankind, as before this time came to the initiates, through the choir of Angels who will send imaginations to the SpiritualSelf of man in the Russian-Slavic 6th Epoch. The first step towards this "Manas culture" is the vivification of thinking from the dead physical brain to the etheric brain. This is the precondition for man to perceive the signs sent as synchronicity by the Guardian Angel.


26/27 December - 3rd Holy Night - March – Pisces

The Three Nights of the White Lily.

The soul recognizes that it cannot linger upwards and is pulled downwards again, as it still has much earthly weight in itself.

The soul consciously begins to purify the earthly body, considering every food a "Holy Viaticum". "I am the bread..."

"We come from bread, we live from bread along the path of formation and return to bread."

Mystery: Never forget the Goal of Destinations along the wide paths in the Earthly Kingdom.


Comment

This is the first night of the White Lily. The White Lily, flower with six petals, is the symbol that defines this first part ofthe Holy Nights, which runs from December 24 to 31. In fact we will see that together these 7 nights + 1, form theHexagram, the symbol of the macrocosm and therefore of the paradisiacal soul of Adam before the formation of spiritual individuality, the I, represented instead by the Pentagram, the symbol of the microcosm. The 8th Night represents the culmination and the end of the process of formation of the Hexagram. The purity of the Lily, that is, of the soul before incarnation, when still widespread in cosmic spaces, is also the symbol that describes the astral body and therefore theShepherds.

From another point of view, the Holy Nights from 24 to 31 December represent the Post-Mortem period: if the FourWeeks of Advent are the recapitulation of past lives, then contemplated in the 1st Holy Night, the 24th represents death(the Expulsion from the Earthly Paradise) and so the following Holy Nights are but the ascent to the celestial spheres ofthe Planets in post-mortem life: Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn, to arrive at Cosmic Midnightwhich corresponds to Midnight on December 31, the Night of New Year's Eve.

Fish is associated with bread as food in the Gospels: just think of the miracle of the multiplication of loaves and fish. In the Night of Pisces, it is the food that must be taken as a sacred act. "Man lives not only by bread" is the way in whichChrist is able to partially overcome Ahriman's temptation to transform stones into bread. However, if it is true that man lives "also of spirit" as long as he is in a physical body he will have to eat bread. This is the Ahrimanic Sting, which remains and binds the body of man to earthly matter and therefore to materialism. Therefore, it is necessary to appeal to the sense of the sacred in order to make sacred also food, that is, that which binds us to the earthly sphere. The Christ-Fish comes to transmute even the Bread into a sacrament "This is my body offered for you in sacrifice", it is the matter filled with life and transmuted by the solar forces into nourishment. By nourishing the body one can cultivate the spirit.

The virtue of Pisces is Magnanimity which, if practiced, becomes Love, which we shall find again in the following night.Zarathustra as Master of Wisdom or Mahatma "Great Soul" sacrifices his I so that the vehicles of Jesus of Nazareth maybe inhabited by Christ. Christ, like Fish, gives himself to humanity by being himself the Love in Person of the Trinity.

Adam Kadmon: Capricorn

The Region of Capricorn is linked to those who on the Ancient Sun were human, the Archangels. They are therefore called Spirits of Fire. Their very being was interwoven with the Light of the Sun, which detached itself from the masses of Saturn and Jupiter. If initially they woven the outer light, now they weave the inner light. The Midnight Sun that contemplates itself clairvoyantly at Christmas has around it a golden crown composed of the 12 Archangels, these are the Ameshaspentas of Zarathustra, whose rays then solidified in the 12 cranial nerves in the body of man.

It is the Archangels themselves who inspired the Twelve Holy Nights, having first accepted the impulse of Christ in thePersian Epoch. Mary in Luke's Gospel received the announcement from the Archangel Gabriel. The Archangel Michael, in whose time we find ourselves, inspires universality and cosmopolitanism, just as he helps man to reach living thought.Capricorn forms the knees in the melotesia: they are the cranial vault of the limbs, so that when man will be Archangel on the Future Venus, the head will be formed from these.

Christ has a special bond with the Archangels, since he enters the body of Jesus of Nazareth through their Region ofCapricorn: in this way Christ comes not to baptize with water, but with Fire. Indeed, Fire is the element with which theArchangel forms his lowest vehicle in the Physical World. They inspire language and thus form the Spirit of the People ofthe nations of Earth. The spiritualization of language leads to an understanding of the inspired language of the Archangel.The Guides of Humanity in the Russian-Slavic Sixth Epoch are Archangels and will communicate about Christ with inspirations to the Vital Spirit.

In the cycle of the year, it is at this time that the Natural Darkness is at its peak: Ahriman, the Prince of This World, acts from the earthly sphere with the vain hope that every December he can triumph over the Spiritual Sun. But every year it isMichael who overcomes the Dragon of Matter, allowing the Spiritual Sun to manifest at its darkest hour. Ahrimanhimself, having fallen behind during the Ancient Sun, opposes the Archangels who were then human. Ahriman is then represented as Satan, the Goat of the Evil One, an aspect of Capricorn. The Seventh Epoch of Culture, the American, will be the Era of Capricorn, in which there will be the greatest opposition between the Natural Darkness and the SpiritualLight and which will end with the War of All Against All.


27/28 December - 4th Holy Night - April – Aries

Consciously purify the astral body: dislike and sympathy are transformed into Love. Passions and cravings are silent. The strength of Christ penetrates with His light and His strength into what is luciferic in us.

Mystery: the work on ourselves serves the well-being of all. The archangel Uriel places us before a mirror in which we see ourselves as we are.

Comment

The Archangel Uriel, the one who dispenses initiation, places us before our luciferic double that resides in the astral body.Without the recognition of our own faults we cannot proceed in the purification of the astral body and therefore subjective passions will never approach the objective love with which we must approach Christ. Beyond pleasure and sorrow, there is necessity (karma) or freedom (free will), which the initiate recognizes and works to conquer. "The Kingdom of Heavenis taken by force, and the willing ones take it" (Matthew 11:12). Selfishness in itself undeniably exists, the only way too vercome the luciferic selfishness is to extend the limit of selfishness to embrace in wider and wider circles the neighbour, until, by expansion of its own limit, it is transmuted into its opposite, altruism, the virtue that we will find again the night of Cancer.

Uriel or Auriel means "Light of God", the Gods of Light have a particular connection with the end of March and the beginning of April. In this period the solar gods, like the Persian Mithras, rose in the spring vegetable forces. Easter is at the same time, so that the Solar Spirit itself rises again. Uriel is the Initiator, the one who begins the disciple of esotericism by leading him to the Threshold of the Spiritual World. It is in the cave of the interiority that both initiation takes place, as in the Mysteries of Mithras, and the birth of the paradisiacal soul of the Nathanic Jesus. Plato uses the metaphor of the cave showing the difference between those who believe the world of shadows, the Maya of the PhysicalWorld, and those who instead go back to the source before the Light, the ideas that inhabit the archetypal world. Such is the difference between the profane and the initiate.

Lucifer is also the Great Initiator of humanity, but he must be understood correctly. If Uriel places in front of us the mirror our defects, revealing the luciferic shadow, Lucifer has opened our eyes only to be able to live at the expense of our astral body. It is Christ who redeems the Great Initiator, subtracting the luciferic dominion over what was pronounced in theAncient Mysteries, illuminating them with the New Mysteries of Anthroposophy.

Aries is the sign of the Initials, just as Uriel dispenses initiation. The initiatory purpose of Aries is to break down limitations, continuously expand the limit of consciousness by introducing the new. However, this must be commensurate with the real abilities of the candidate, who will be initiated when he will be able to sacrifice, "make sacred". The Virtueof Aries is the Equilibrium that when practiced leads to Sacrifice. This is the Initiation of the Aries, "Behold the Lamb ofGod, who takes away sins from the world".


Adam Kadmon: Sagittarius

Sagittarius, as Centaur, represents the dual human nature, in whose lower part it is still bestial. The infant crawls on all fours, but will have to overcome gravity to get up on two legs. The animal forces, lunar, are horizontal; the human forces, solar, are vertical. Every man, in the course of his individual and collective evolution, constantly struggles to become himself, having to place the lunar forces at the service of the solar ones. The Archai or Principalities draw their forces from the Region of Sagittarius, and are responsible for the formation both of Time (Spirits of Time), in which evolution unfolds, and of Personality (Spirits of Personality). It is the human personality which, by expressing spiritual individuality, makes us humans, men, whose erect station is an expression of its solar origin. The Elohim shape the Ego that allows man to go back to the spiritual world, the Archai give a personality to relate to the physical world.

The arrow of Sagittarius can only be shot when the man finally reaches the standing position. The arrow is the thinking that penetrates the world. When the bow touches the arrow, it bends, like the animal under the forces of the moon. When the arrow is shot, thought is objectified and the bow becomes straight. The Archai were human in the Ancient Saturn, whose activity of thought is given to man as thought. The arrow is similarly the lightning bolt, the lightning which is the state of matter that Archai can use to manifest themselves. The arrow, as thought of the Ancient Saturn, becomes the will in the Future Volcano, when man himself will be an Archai.

The thighs are the part of the human body that corresponds to Sagittarius, which unite the middle part of the body with the lower part. In the Age of Sagittarius, the Seventh Epoch of American Culture, it will be the Archai who will send impulses to man. Then humanity as a whole will be divided like a Centaur, having a selfish, animal and lunar race, and an altruistic, human and solar one. These two human races will lead to the War of All Against All, in which only Christ, manifested through the Archai Guides of Humanity, will be able to show the way. Such guides will prefigure the Man-Spirit in intuitions.


28/29 December - 5th Holy Night - May – Taurus

Consciously purify the body of thought.

Discipline the thought. Focus on positive things. Convert the black doves of thought into white doves, because our thought can be compared to a dovecote, until it is consciously conducted with discipline. We must close this dovecote to negative and strange thoughts.

Mystery: The purification of the Temple through Jesus Christ.

Comment

The body of thought is the rational soul, a soul that arises through the mediation of the etheric body. It is responsible for our thought, whose rigidity is dissolved by the exercise of positivity: the raven of putrefaction hides the dove of the GoodNews. The Temple of the human head must be purified from all that is foreign to it. The thought of the material brain is electricity, a decaying light which dies in the compression of matter. However, this is not the thought that belongs to man, it is only his lower reflection that characterizes in particular the fall of civilizations, from the middle of the FourthEpoch of Greek-Roman Culture to our Fifth Epoch of European Culture.

The thinking of the human being, originally, is living, as it has its own matrix in the etheric brain, in turn woven from the cosmic ether from which it was formed during the descent of the human soul in incarnation. While material thought reasons by oppositions, dualistically, living thought is capable of recognizing identity in diversity, unity in multiplicity, inharmonious holos, the whole. Here is holistic thinking as a prefiguration of this thinking which, acquiring the perception of the Ether World, becomes living again. If in the Fourth Epoch, especially in the Greek people, an atavistic etheric vision persisted, which saw the world populated by gods (Angels) and demigods (elemental beings), the new etheric vision will be fully conscious.

Living thought will be able to redeem the materialism rampant in culture. It will be man, with the help of the ArchangelMichael, who will definitely win over the Dragon Ahriman. On the relationship between Michael and man will depend the redemption or not of Ahriman, which will end only in the fateful time of 666, the Sixth Metamorphosis of the FutureVenus, in the 6th condition of Life and 6th condition of Form. Michael is the Archangel of the Sun, "Face of God", that is, he shares his Face with Christ, the Second Person of the Son. Michael is the herald of cosmic thinking, woven in the cosmic ether that connects in a matrix all beings that inhabit the Cosmos. Michael respects the human being with his abilities, therefore he does not impose his presence, he only waits for the coming of man who wants to raise his thinking to living again.

The Virtue of Taurus is the Equilibrium which, when practiced, leads to Progress. The equilibrium in every dualism allows to escape both Lucifer and Ahriman. The encounter with Michael and therefore with Christ, occurs only between the two Columns, Jakin and Boaz. In this way what appears as fixity is in reality a dynamic equilibrium that allows the progressive ascension towards ever higher spheres.


Adam Kadmon: Scorpio

In Adam Kadmon one reaches the Region of Scorpio to which the Elohim or Podestà or Exusiai, the Spirits of the Planets, are linked. It is the Spirits of the Form who give identity to all that exists. On the Ancient Saturn the Elohim had in their custody all that had been elaborated by superior Hierarchies. What the Thrones send from the centre to the periphery and, conversely, what the Virtues send from the periphery to the centre, is mediated by the Spirits of Form. They are the free creators of the Cosmos in the Metamorphosis of the present Earth, to which they have given a closed form. The forces ofScorpio are in fact paralyzing forces. The Elohim are interwoven with the Light created by the Vital Spirit of theArchangels, yet their essence is in the Spiritual Light of the Spiritual Sun.

Such forces are also the forces which concretize identity. Indeed, it was the Elohim who gave part of their substance to form the I of man in the middle of the Lemurian Era. Immediately after the androgynous humanity, Adam-Eva, was separated into two sexes, man-Adam and woman-Eva. At the same time, part of the reproductive force was internalized by structuring the brain in the two male and female hemispheres. Spiritual love (Agape) and sensual love (Eros) are both expressions of the Elohim, which however were confused due to the intervention of the luciferic spirits. The mixing of these two aspects according to occult methods subjects the I, prematurely penetrated into the Astral World, to Luciferic Elohim, who are responsible for the differentiation of man into races. Such practices obscure self-consciousness. In the mid-Atlantic Era, in the Era of Scorpio, man acquired the mineral substances in his physical body, hardening and being able to set foot on the mainland.

The sign of Scorpio becomes the Eagle when it sublimates its selfish nature. The Scorpio shuns the light, committing suicide when exposed to it with no possibility of escape, the Eagle, on the contrary, yearns for the light, being able to stare into the sun with his eyes. Both these natures are present in the human I: consubstantial to the spiritual nature of theElohim, however, it is confined in a body with an individual form, where it blends with the personality and acts in a selfish way. The Eagle is the I that consciously recognizes its spiritual nature, the Scorpio is the I that, trapped in the personality, performs selfish gestures. In the Expulsion from the Earthly Paradise, the I not only acquired freedom but was enveloped by a luciferic astral that made it able to attach itself to the transient and illusory nature of things.

As death reigns in the world of Scorpio, life reigns in that of the Eagle. Scorpio kills spiritual life to generate physical forms; the Eagle is a physical form in which spiritual life is reborn. The Scorpio kills himself for having repented of having betrayed, like Judas Iscariot, while at the opposite pole we find John-Lazzaro, resurrected by Jesus Christ himself.Between the two there is Peter, capable so much of denying Christ three times before the cockcrow, that he is the stone ofthe Church. The cockcrow is a reference to the return of Hermes-Mercury, herald of the Sun, and therefore of the wisdom of Lucifer redeemed by Christ. The Church of Peter, the Catholic Church, sees Lucifer as Evil, identified and mixed withAhriman-Satan. Not understanding the ambivalent role of Lucifer, that is, of the Good Thief Dismas, redeemed on the cross, the Church of Peter is destined to dissolve into the Church of the future Age of Aquarius, that is, the Church ofJohn. The Cross will give way to the Rose+Cross. Christian Rosenkreutz , John reincarnated, in fact received the initiation of Scorpio which allowed him to spiritualize the Christianity of the time (1250) in Rosicrucianism.


29/30 December - 6th Holy Night - June – Gemini

Now follow the three Nights of the Sword.

The Night of Peter. Night of the Consecration of the Sword.

Each of us must forge our own sword of discernment. Each of us must unite with increased willpower the two sides, theImmortal, the Eternal and the Perishable, so as to recognize the truth.

Mystery: Merging the Son of God with the Son of Man - Unity!


Comment

The three Nights of the Sword represent the human Ego: in its dualism it is represented in the Apocalypse as a double-edged sword coming out of the mouth of a Son of Man of the First Apocalyptic Seal (corresponding to the AncientSaturn). The I, as we have seen, is both the maximum evil and the maximum good, the Scorpio-Eagle, on this ambivalence, Lucifer acted through the astral substance, making the I identify from time to time with pleasure or sorrow, and its transitory nuances. The first night the Consecration of the Sword represents the foundation of the Church on Peter:"And I say to you: You are Peter and on this stone I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.To thee I will give the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and all that thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and all that thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven" (Matthew 16:18-19).

The esotericist consecrates the double-edged sword of his I to Christ, so that it is an instrument for discerning good from evil, rather than the mixture of Good and Evil. But Good and Evil must be correctly understood: Evil is the identification with material reality which crystallizes the inferior I of astral nature, the personality, to the detriment of individuality.Good is instead the correct relationship between individuality and personality, so that the I illuminates the astral, precisely with discernment of the contrasting passions that stir the astral inhabited by luciferic spirits. The personality is mortal as long as closed within itself it experiences only the illusory and ephemeral material reality, the Maya, believing it to be the truth. Individuality is immortal by its birth, but it can be obscured by personality, remaining completely passive.

The dualism good/evil normally understood is not the influence of Lucifer, identified with good, and of Ahriman, identified with evil. But the Truth that makes one free is in the right middle way, the Christ between Lucifer and Ahriman.Only the synergy of personality and individuality can allow man to fulfil his cosmic mission of being spiritual incarnated in a human body on Earth. Only here on Earth, with the sufferings of incarnation, is it possible to know and overcome the secret of Death, learning to morally discern Good from Evil. In this, man is the twin of himself. The Greek myth of theDioscuri, born from the egg of Leda, tells of how one was mortal, Castor, and the other immortal, Pollux. Castor was the son of the King of Sparta, Tindaro, while Pollux was the son of Zeus, in the form of the Swan. Castor dies but Pollux, sacrifices himself to give immortality to both, becoming, through Zeus, eternal in the constellation of Gemini.

The Sign of Gemini is also the sign of the two children Jesus, the Jesus of Luke's Gospel and the Jesus of Matthew'sGospel: the Nathanic Jesus is Adam's heavenly soul, the Solomonic one is Zarathustra reincarnated. The Mystery of theTwo Children Jesus, represents the fusion of Adam's heavenly soul with the I of Zarathustra, bringing the two Jesus intoJesus of Nazareth at the Presentation in the Temple at the age of 12. This Mystery then sublimates again in a further fusion, the one that leads from Jesus to Christ: it was in fact this twin of himself, Jesus of Nazareth, the highest initiate, who received his divine "twin", the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity, Christ at the moment of Baptism in the Jordan.Only Jesus of Nazareth could have accommodated this divine being without disintegrating his vehicles.

The Son of God is what in man was formed by the Hierarchies before the Mystery of Golgotha, the three bodies with their physical, etheric and astral cosmic evolution. The Son of Man is that which through the I-Christ emerges as the triple eternal spirit: Manas-Self Spiritual, Buddhi-Vital Spirit and Atma-Man Spirit. Unity is the state that Nature, in its differentiation, governed by the Planetary and Zodiacal Gods, can find in the Spirit of the Sun, who illuminates everything and everyone with the same loving intensity. Thus man, divided into his human and bestial nature, finds unity in the Spirit of Christ.

The Virtue of Gemini is the Perseverance that when practiced leads to Trust. The instability of the relationship between mortal personality and eternal, un-natal and im-mortal individuality is only possible in perseverance. This constancy of intent, the consecrated sword, allows one to have Trust, that is to have Faith.


Adam Kadmon: Libra

The Spirits of the Movement, the Dynameis or Virtues, receive their strength from Libra. From their strength comes movement. It is the Virtues that give internal dynamism to the whole Cosmos, which holds its equilibrium precisely on the reciprocal movement of the Planets in the solar system. The Spirits of Movement in the Ancient Moon balanced theSun and the Moon, the two luminaries, so that a cosmic balance was formed. They are the regents of the Ancient Moon, but their action extends to the Earth, where in fact the Libra comes into being as an instrument made by man, unique in the Zodiac, which occupies a central position, dividing Virgo and Scorpio, at first adjacent. The claws of Scorpio have been transformed into the plates of Libra thanks to the action of the Virtues.

Balance is therefore the movement, not the stasis. In man, the pelvis makes it possible to stand on both legs and at the same time carry around, towards destiny, the upper part of the body. The Virtues collaborate with the Spirits of Will, theThrones, who confer the external movement of the planets. The Thrones radiate from the centre towards the periphery, theVirtues from the periphery towards the centre, thus leading to the dynamics of the Earth, the movement of entire continents. The Cherubim, or Spirits of Harmony, coordinate the internal and external movement in the whole. It is in theVirtues that we begin to see the differentiation in the Cosmos, a process that is deepened with the Elohim and then theThird Hierarchy. The First Hierarchy and the Spirits of Wisdom, the Dominations, confer homogeneity on the Cosmos; while from the Spirits of the Movement onwards, the Cosmos becomes heterogeneous.

For it is not from the equal that harmony can arise, but from diversity. When diversity is recognized in its potentiality, it carries out its mission, and thus fulfils its eurythmic gesture in cosmic choreography. It is the Spirits of the Movementwho allow the Music of the Spheres to exist, in that they radiate the possibility that the cosmic orchestra may be made of several musical instruments instead of just one; while the Cherubim are the conductors of this orchestra. The Harmony ofthe Cosmos is reflected on Earth in the delicate dynamic balances of ecosystems: here where the chemical ether regulates the dynamic balances. It is also the ether of number and sound. Ecology, is the "science of the house", the Earth, which will become an "ecosophy" when penetrated by the relationship between the Spirit of Christ and Gaia, the Earth as a living being.


30/31 December - 7th Holy Night - July – Cancer

The Serpent to the Sword's Hilt. Wisdom. Devote yourself to high readings. It is the night of the Great Commandment.

Mystery of activity: Who rules our souls? Who is the Lord of our soul, the author of our actions? We have the freedom to strengthen the good will within us.


Comment

On the second Night of the Sword, the Luciferic forces of the Serpent, the currents of Astral Light must be converted intoWisdom. The Seeker of Light, the esotericist, must be a Warrior led by Michael to win Lucifer. The Great Arcane of Magic is the image of Lucifer and at the same time of Sophia, which for the profane are so mixed up that they are indistinguishable. When man becomes able to distinguish Lucifer from Sophia, then he can perform the White Magic aimed at freeing man's spirit. Now the warrior is a Wizard.

Sophia falls into matter because she wants to keep something for herself of the Pleroma, the memory of the IneffableFather before the Manifestation: in so doing she generates the false god Yaldabaoth, the one who, full of pride, self-elects himself Creator. A false god who creates the Seven Archons, fallen angels, who imprison the sparks of light, the souls of men. Christ, brother and bridegroom of Sophia, comes to redeem his condition, while giving Gnosis to men. Only with Gnosis, spiritual knowledge, is it possible to find the key that opens the doors of the spiritual prison into which man's soul has fallen.

When man comes into contact with Gnosis, he can release his spark from the dominion of the Arconti, rejoining Sophia,Wisdom, freeing every part of him from his fallen nature. However, he cannot do so if he does not recognize that Gnosisis originated from Christ. Love is the Great Commandment: "love one another as I have loved you". (John 15:12). That ofJohn is the Gospel of Gnosis, as is his Church. And always John, reincarnated in Christian Rosenkreutz, brings to man theRosicrucian path of initiation, practicable today, in which the first step is the study of the natural sciences, of Nature, and therefore recognize that "everything in Nature is a symbol" as Goethe said. From natural science understood in its living sense, Goethe's science, one arrives at the inner perception of natural phenomena, to the Eternal World and from this to the Threshold of the Wisdom of Man, Anthropos-Sophia.

The Virtue of Cancer is Altruism, that is, the opposite of Luciferic egoism, which when practiced leads to Purification, that is, the precondition for the manifestation of Sophia in the astral body. From the relationship with theAnthroposophical Being, the esotericist understands that "Love is but Wisdom reborn in the I" as Steiner said, whereWisdom, Sophia, is but the redeemed Lucifer, the future Holy Spirit or Paraclete, the Comforter. In the Apocalypse, in theFifth Seal, this appears with the image of the Woman Dressed in the Sun who, with her head crowned with Stars, crushes the head of the Serpent under the Moon, while she gives birth to the Sun Son. Here is the Anthropos-Sophia. Sophia is pregnant with Christ. In the constellation of Cancer there is a star cluster known as Praesepe, here is the image of the cosmic nativity. And it is in the Era of Cancer, the Ancient Indian Era that humanity was born as a physical being onMother Earth.


Adam Kadmon: Virgo

It is the Spirits of Wisdom, the Kyriotetes or Dominations, who are linked to the Region of Virgo. The Dominations are the regents of the Ancient Sun, however, their action extends to the Ancient Moon and for this reason they have as their symbol Virgo, that is, the luminous side of the Moon. In man they form the viscera, whose metabolic activity is able to support the whole organism, receiving and processing nourishment.

Divine Sophia has here her relationship with the highest spirit of man, the Man-Spirit. The metabolism is in fact internalized will. In her Apocalyptic image, the head adorned with twelve Stars indicates the activity of the Dominations from the Zodiac toward the center of the heat mass of the Ancient Saturn. The Sun in the womb of Sophia indicates the activity of the Dominations when they gave the germ of the etheric-vital body of the human being during the Ancient Sun.The Moon under the feet of Sophia indicates the activity of the Dominations during the Ancient Moon from which they formed the Silver, whose mirroring power symbolizes how the Moon was purified to reflect the Sun's rays in purity

Sophia has her earthly incorporation in Mary, the Mother of the Jesus of Luke's Gospel, the one who will conceive the Nathanic Jesus, the heavenly soul of Adam, virginally conceived as the fruit of a sacred union (hierogamy). Sophia thus incorporated was half of Adam's heavenly soul, being the heavenly soul of Eve, before temptation. She as a Virgin, never incarnated before, came to join the other Mary, the old bride of the Gospel of Matthew, at the moment of her Baptism in the Jordan. And so, as rejuvenated, Mary now finds herself to be Mary-Sophy, the new Isisophia, Bride and Virgin. ThenMary becomes "Immaculate", a comparison of Virtue, as a sharer of Divine Wisdom, present in eternity (Goethe's EternalFeminine). She becomes the mediator between man and the divinity of the Son.

When the Dominations contemplated the Sacrifice of the Thrones accomplished in the Ancient Sun and offered to theCherubim, they gave themselves in their substance of Wisdom: it is from contemplation of this cosmic sacrifice that Mary draws her Virtue, which Christ accomplishes even more sublimely at the moment of the Mystery of Golgotha.


31 December/1 January - 8th Holy Night - August – Leo

The Cross on the Hilt of the Sword. Sacrifice. The tongue, encircled with the sword of the Christic force, speaks the truth without hurting. It is the night that drives away terror.

Mystery: the knight, the fighter with the spear of the will and the sword of knowledge. The dog as a symbol of obedience.Behind him Death and the Devil! To a certain degree of knowledge, every wrong move quickly leads to perdition. Victory is achieved through the Fullness of God and untiring loyalty to the tasks of the Lion.


Comment

Now the Sword can be transformed, revealing its true essence when reversed: the Sword becomes the Cross of Sacrifice.The cosmic struggle between Lucifer and Ahriman for the soul of man is won by the Mage-Warrior, the one who juggles both the astral and the etheric, both the celestial and material spheres. If before the tip of the sword was turned toward the sky, where Lucifer was to be vanquished, now it is turned toward the Earth, putting in its right place the lower astral ego.The figure is that of the Mystical Knight, the Templar who brings together both the Sword and the Cross. Here the Word becomes powerful again, capable of becoming the Sword of the I, the same as the First Seal of the Apocalypse "In the right hand he held Seven Stars, from his mouth came out a sharp double-edged sword and his face resembled the Sun when it shines in all its power. (Revelation 1:16).

Perhaps it will intrigue the dog suddenly mentioned as a symbol of obedience, but this night, being the passage between the end of the being of the old year and the beginning of the new, is related to the Mystery of the Alpha and Omega, indicated in the First Night. This Mystery is the Mystery of the Tarot, particularly in the Tarot de Marseille. The MysticalKnight, the Knight of Swords (last Court Charter in the Minor Arcana), who rides a white steed, becomes the Fool, (Arcanum 0) who goes through the various metamorphoses in the course of the Major Arcana pushed by the dog (Sirius),becoming first of all the Wizard or Apprentice (Arcanum I°). This Mystery of the Tarot, connected with Christmas, has been illustrated several times by Rudolf Steiner: if in the Holy Nights the whole journey in the Zodiac is recapitulated, it is in the Tarot that the images of the Book of Life unfold, from the Alpha to the Omega. The Wizard forms with the position of his body an Aleph, or Alpha, while the World, the last Major Arcanum (Arcanum XXI°), forms an Omega.

Behind the Fool who moves in the sequence of the Arcana, up to the Tower or House God (Arcanum XVI°), there areDeath (Arcanum XIII°) and the Devil (Arcanum XV°). Death is Ahriman, the Bad Thief, while the Devil is Lucifer, theGood Thief, the Hanged One (Arcanum XII°), the one who is overthrown like the Sword in the Cross is the newChristopher. Now that Lucifer and Ahriman are in check, the divine lightning strikes the Tower, destroying all that is still is impermanent and thus revealing the Fullness of God (the Sirius Star, Arcanum XVII°) the regained Edenic consciousness of the Reintegration, with the loyalty of the Lion, whose mouth is opened by the Force (Arcanum IX°), and who finds himself haloed in the last Arcanum of the World. Both the Star and the Force are the Sophia. The Virtue of Leo is Compassion, in which resides the true Force, which when practiced leads to Freedom, the realization of the mission of life in the World.

December 31st at midnight is the moment when the Spirit of Time (Archai) of the past year passes the baton to the angel of the future year, there is a moment when one passes through a non-time: that is the moment when one yearns for the connection with the Higher I, formulating a creative purpose:

It is particularly important that we commit ourselves on New Year's Eve (New Year's Eve). On this night we release the Spirit of the People, for a moment, and what we think will be taken by the Higher Hierarchies and brought back (to us during the course of the year) as a force for realization.

- Rudolf Steiner


Adam Kadmon: Leo

First of all, it is interesting to note that this night, together with Christmas night (St. John's Day, 2nd Holy Night, 25/26December) are the only ones where the zodiac signs correspond between Hahn's sequence and Prokofieff's sequence. In a certain sense, we could see such correspondence as the fact that in order to reach the Age of Aquarius, it is necessary to penetrate the Solar Mystery of Leo, the same of the Archangel Michael, assigned to the Lion Fire, as well as theEvangelist Mark, the one who allowed the conversion of the Egyptian Mysteries of Ormus into Christianity.

The Spirits of Will, the Thrones, draw their strength from the Region of Leo. They are the regents of the evolution of theAncient Saturn. The Thrones took part of their substance of Man-Spirit, and formed an "egg of heat" which formed the germ of the physical body of the first human beings. The man of the Ancient Saturn was composed of heat ether eggs, their individualisation and reunion at the beginning, middle and end of the evolution saturnia is always determined by the action of the Region of Leo.

It was the Cherubim who accepted this "making sacred", and the sacrifice was the impulse of all subsequent solar and lunar evolution. In the body of man it is from the Region of Leo that the Heart is formed, the cup capable of hostingChrist. Jesus, the Messiah, himself was the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. A clarification concerns the heart, and its formation on the Ancient Saturn, unlike the blood circulation, which began only on the Ancient Sun, and is therefore subsequent to the role of the heart as the center of circulation. The heart was born on the Ancient Saturn as the organ of sense, that is, ofthe sense of inner soul warmth. Courage springs from the Region of Leo, of which the Thrones themselves are interwoven: in the substance of their sacrifice was contained the courage of all that would still be manifested in evolution.Thus, the Thrones are Spirits of Courage, whose substance poured into the Cosmos has given rise to the Sea of Courage.

This is indeed the night that drives away the terror in the courage to embark on the New Year. Man draws courage from the Region of Leo, whose courageous attitude is the right attitude towards the trials of destiny (Karma). However, the courage of struggle is also compassion (the Virtue of Leo). Every summer, when the outpouring of the Earth's breath has reached its peak, the solar radiation decreases and the heat increases. The Canicola, is in conjunction with the heliacal stature of Sirius, the Star of the Dog, which rises on the horizon, precisely in the sign of Leo (here is another facet of the bond between the obedient dog and Leo): this all-pervading warmth is the memory of the explosion of courage of theThrones on the Ancient Saturn.


You can learn more about the period before the Holy Nights with The 4 Weeks of Advent


We will continue in the next article with the following 5 Holy Nights, from 1 to 6 January, from New Year's Eve toEpiphany: The 13 Holy Nights - Second Part: 1-6 January


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