Blood is a special fluid

From Anthroposophy

Blood is more than just a bodily fluid. The mineral substance analyzed after removing blood from the human organism, is no indicator for the functions of spiritual fluid in the body of Man.

In medicine blood is considered as a transport mechanism connecting different body systems, transporting oxygen and nutrients to all parts of the body, and removing waste products. It also has an extra cellular matrix called plasma with formed elements floating in it. Four blood groups A, B, AB and O are differentiated based on the antigens in the red blood cells and the antibodies in plasma. Blood tests are performed through medical diagnostics to analyze the traces of many substances as indicators for health, eg iron, blood sugar, cholesterol, etc.

However blood is a special fluid, in that:

  • blood is the carrier of the human 'I' in its warmth. It was with the appearance of the warm blood that blood-based relationships were initiated through the influence of the Jehovah SoF in mid Lemuria.
  • blood carries the egotistic Luciferic influence in the mineral blood fluid. In the initial cosmic plan, blood was not intended to become a mineral fluid as it is today, but this happened through the Luciferic influence. The blood carries the cosmic breathing around across the three subsystems of Man.
  • the blood contains all four kingdoms of nature. The I can currently only penetrate into the forces of the mineral kingdom, the other kingdoms are represented by the forces of the spiritual beings from the three Elementary Kingdoms. (see 1907-12-04-GA098 below)


Other aspects to be shed light on are:

  • the quote from Faust, and why blood is linked in legends and traditions of old to the evil or devil
  • blood relations and primordial or blood-relationships-based-love, and the difference between marriage between relatives and non-relatives
  • preparations in the Mysteries will give us a link to the symbolism of the Last Supper and the legend of the Holy Grail
  • the Mystery of silver discussed the link with warmth and previous generations, and how Christ worked on the blood of Jesus purifying it during the three years

Illustrations


Lecture coverage and references

The quote from Faust was the title for two lectures, 1906-10-25-GA055 and 1906-11-30-NOGA and 1907-01-11-NOGA (NOGA stands for lecture not in the GA today), an introductory quote to set the scene, from 1906-10-25-GA055 (SWCC)

.. in Goethe's Faust, when Faust, representing striving man, enters into a pact with evil powers, represented by the emissary from hell, Mephistopheles. Faust is to sign the pact in blood. At first he regards this as a joke, but Goethe undoubtedly meant the words spoken by Mephistopheles at this point to be taken seriously: “Blood is a very special fluid.”

.. I naturally cannot go into what every commentator has said about this particular passage, but it amounts more or less to what is said by Professor Jacob Minor. Like others, he regards Mephistopheles' remark to be ironic, but Minor adds: “The devil is an enemy of blood.”

He goes on to point out that as blood invigorates and sustains human life, the devil, being an enemy of the human race, must of necessity be also an enemy of blood. Minor is quite right when he further demonstrates that in sagas and legends blood always plays the kind of role it plays in Goethe's Faust. The oldest version of the Faust legend clearly describes how Faust makes a slight cut in his left hand with a penknife, dips a quill in the blood in order to sign the agreement, and as he does so, the blood, flowing from the wound, forms the words: “Oh man, escape!”

This is all quite correct, but what about the remark that the devil is an enemy of blood and for that reason demands the signature written in blood? Can you imagine anyone wishing to possess the very thing he abhors?

The only reasonable interpretation of the passage is that Goethe, as well as earlier writers of Faust legends, wishes to show that the devil regards blood as especially valuable, and that to him it is important that the deed is signed in blood rather than in neutral ink. The supposition must be that the representative of the powers of evil believes, or rather is convinced, that he will gain a special power over Faust by possessing at least a drop of his blood. It is quite obvious that Faust must sign in blood, not because the devil is his enemy, but because he wants to have power over him. The reason behind this passage is a strange premonition that if someone gains power over an individual's blood, one gains power over the person. In short, the feeling is that blood is a very special fluid and it is the real issue in the fight for an individual's soul between good and evil.

and also several other aspects are illuminated, requiring study of the full lecture

The pictures of the external world made inward through the brain are absorbed by the blood and transformed into vital formative forces. These are the forces that build up the human body; in other words, blood is the substance that builds the body. We are dealing with a process that brings the blood into contact with the outer world; it enables it to take from it the most perfect substance, oxygen. Oxygen continually renews the blood, endowing it with new life. ..

.. The “I” turns its vision inwards into a person's being, and its will outwards to the world. This twofold direction manifests itself in the blood, which directs its forces inwards, building up a person's being, and outwards towards the oxygen. When humans fall asleep they sink into unconsciousness because of what the consciousness experiences within the blood, whereas when they, by means of sense organs and brain, form mental pictures of the outer world, then the blood absorbs these pictures into its formative forces. Thus, the blood exists midway between an inner picture-world and an outer world of concrete forms.

This becomes clearer if we look at two phenomena. One is that of genealogy, that is, the way conscious beings are related to ancestors, the other is the way we experience external events. ..

.. The important fact to bear in mind is that in ancient times a dim clairvoyance existed out of which arose sagas and legends, and that the clairvoyant consciousness is based on unmixed blood, whereas our awakened consciousness depends on mixed blood. ..

.. therefore, it is a destructive process that gave rise to the modern human wakeful day-consciousness. The kind of spiritual life that resulted from intermarriage has been destroyed in the course of evolution; while the very thing that destroyed it, that is, marriage between strangers, gave birth to the intellect and today's lucid consciousness.

Also 1908-11-10-GA107:

.. the blood flowing in the arteries, and sustaining the living body, is not what flows out when I make the prick and take out a drop. For the moment blood comes out of the body it changes to such an extent that we have to admit it is something quite different; and what flows out as coagulating blood, however fresh it is, is no proof of the living essence within the organism. Blood is the expression of the ego, a member of the human being that is at a high level. Even as physical substance blood is something that you cannot examine physically in its totality at all, because when you are able to see it, it is no longer the blood it was when it flowed in the body. It cannot be looked at physically, for the moment it is exposed to view and can be examined by some method similar to X-ray, you are no longer examining blood but something that is the external image of blood on the physical plane.


In the lecture 1907-12-04-GA098 on the Elementary Kingdoms, we learn

.. It is the blood which first makes man a human being; all the kingdoms are contained within it. But the I can for the present, penetrate with its cognitive forces only into the mineral kingdom; it must leave the other kingdoms to the Beings of the Elementary Kingdoms.

and also

..the group-souls of the animals reside on the astral plane, but there is another species of Egos, dwelling upon the astral plane, which work upon the human being and vitalize his blood, when the I of man has abandoned it. ...

.. The Beings of the third Elementary Kingdom have a warmth body on the astral plane. During the night, they permeates the blood of Man which warmth — and at the same time. These Beings, belonging to the third Elementary Kingdom, are the companions of the Group souls of the animals — they belong to the same region.

In our astral body, in addition to our I, live spiritual beings whose I dwells upon the astral plane. These Beings permeates the astral body just as maggots live in cheese. This is the third Elementary Kingdom: it is the kingdom which forms impulses and passions of an animal nature [in us].

Blood as a symbol in the Mysteries – two spiritual preparations

1906-07-29-GA097 is the key lecture with Wagner and purified blood but also contains this element

We shall come to perceive what blood really signifies when we learn to understand a great revolutionary change that took place once in the mysteries. ... When the ancient blood relationships began to be broken, a significant event took place in the mysteries. ...

.. In the high mysteries, blood relationship was replaced by the partaking of two spiritual “preparations.” In the lower mysteries outward symbols were used instead of these; and the outward symbols were Bread and Wine. In the two spiritual preparations was a substance that was like blood. They were substances that worked spiritually in a somewhat similar way to the way blood works physically in the veins. As the old clairvoyance gradually disappeared, men began instead to partake of these spiritual preparations. When they had learned all that is contained in the whole wisdom of theosophy, they received these symbols out of Ceridwen's Cup. That was the purified blood that could be given to man from the chalice that opened down to him from above. This Mystery in this true essence passed into the care of a very small community. ...

It was known in the Mysteries that what streams upwards in the Chalice of the Flower lives also in the blood of man. The blood needs, however, to be made clean and pure again, it must be as chaste as the sap that flows in the blossom. ...

The essential secret of the high mysteries passed into the hands of Templars in Northern Spain, the Guardians of the Grail.

Lemuria blood warmth and the start of the I with Jehovah impulse

1907-04-01-GA096

In the blood warmth which lives in the human being, and in pre-Lemurian times lived outside the human being, we have the medium by which the spirit of the earth enters into the human being himselfthe

1906-10-25-GA055 - blood special fluid (link with the 'I', blood relations and primordial love, two blood circuits and breathing - link with heart)

This primordial love, which arose when the souls began to descend into physical bodies, thus faces us in a descending,course of development; this love streamed into the human beings at the moment which the Bible describes in the words: “And God breathed into man's nostrils the breath of life and he became a living soul.”

But something else arose at that time. Man became a living soul, and consequently a being who breathed through his lungs. The air which he thus breathed in, produced his red blood. The I-nature expressed itself in the red blood.

As long as the blood was a common element shared by many, the I too was a common I. We see this in the Jews, where a whole nation was ruled by a group-soul. But the human beings gradually developed and emancipated themselves from the blood of their relatives.

When the first breath of air entered the human being it formed the first foundation of his blood.

But long epochs of time passed by before mankind reached the degree of maturity enabling it to influence the blood so that the primordial love could be replaced by a love for mankind as a whole.

Imagine the course of human development as described just now: The primordial love would gradually die out; love among relatives, the love of a mother for her child, and so forth, would have to decrease; the blood has not the power of encompassing the whole of humanity with a tie of love, so that the power of the Ego, the power of selfishness would grow ever more ... An event had therefore to occur which replaced the primordial love with another kind of love, calling into life a spiritual love, and this event is Christianity.

The appearance of Christianity prevented that which would otherwise have taken place: the disintegration of the whole of humanity into single human atoms. The human beings must indeed become more and more independent, for this lies in the development of their blood, but that which was driven apart naturally, must once more be led together spiritually, through a new power which is able to exercise its influence without the love connected with the blood: This new power is Christianity.

The Mystery of Golgotha thus acquires a fundamental significance for the whole evolution of humanity. If we understand this, we also understand the meaning of the words: the Blood of Christ. This is not something which can be experienced or investigated externally, but something which must be considered as a mystical fact.

Blood relations and primordial love

Excellent lecture reference is 1907-06-27-GA100.

First the difference is sketched between marriage between relatives and non-relatives

This lecture complements the earlier 1907-03-25-GA096

Mineral blood fluid is Luciferic, the pure blood is spiritual

From 1911-12-31-GA134, (SWCC), a lecture advised to read in full, we learn that the mineral blood substance is an effect of the Luciferic infection, and that originally blood was intended to be on the border between the spiritual and mineral.

In between the spiritual and the material, as it were mediating between the two, stands the blood. And in blood we have something which has directly undergone, as substance itself, the Luciferic influence.

... The substance of nerve and muscle and bone owes its existence to the fact that certain bodies of man are irregularly put together. Upon the substances as such Lucifer has no influence; for these substances arise as the result of what he has done, they are there because he has displaced, disarranged, the bodies. Where Lucifer approached the human being he brought about a disarrangement between the bodies.

But upon the blood as matter, as substance, Lucifer works directly. Blood is the one case - and therefore a “special fluid” - where in the material substance itself we have evidence that present-day man is not as he was really intended to be, is not as he would have been but for the Luciferic influence.

For blood has become something quite different from what it should have been.

.. Matter arises when spiritual form comes to a kind of boundary or limit and there breaks and scatters; this pulverised form then shows itself as earthly matter. It really only occurs directly in this way in the mineral world, for the other substances are changed and modified through being taken hold of by other things that intervene. The substance of blood, however, is a unique substance.

Blood substance was originally destined to come first of all to a certain limit. Suppose you have here (a) purely spiritual form-rays of the blood substance, and here (b) its force is exhausted. Now according to the tendencies originally inherent in it, blood substance was not meant to be dispersed and sprayed into space, but at the boundary (b) it was to become just very slightly material and then spray back into itself, directly back again into the spiritual. Blood ought only to have come so far as to form as it were a skin of substance, fine and slight, it ought only to have come to the point of beginning to be material. It should be forever shooting out of the spiritual for a moment, becoming matter just to the extent of being materially perceptible, then again shooting back into the spiritual and being received up again into it.

A perpetual surging forth from the spiritual and shooting back into it again — that is what blood should have been. Its inherent tendencies are directed to this end. Blood was designed to be a perpetual flashing up of light in the material. It was really intended to be something entirely spiritual.

Force of iron in blood to drive out fear and anxiety


1923-10-05-GA229 (SWCC)

.. the August meteor showers stream down into the human shining in the astral light .. trigger a change that occurs in the human blood.

This human blood is in truth not such a material thing as present-day science imagines, but is permeated throughout by impulses from soul and spirit, is rayed through by the force which is carried as iron into the blood and wages war there on anxiety, fear and hate.

The processes which are set going in every blood-corpuscle when the force of iron shoots into it are the same, on a minute human scale, as those which take place when meteors fall in a shining stream through the air. This permeation of human blood by the anxiety-dispelling force of iron is a meteoric activity. The effect of the raying in of the iron is to drive fear and anxiety out of the blood.

And so, as the gods with their meteors wage war on the spirit who would like to radiate fear over all the earth through his coiling serpent-form, and while they cause iron to stream radiantly into this fear-tainted atmosphere, which reaches its peak when autumn approaches or when summer wanes — so the same process occurs inwardly in man, when his blood is permeated with iron.

.. then millions of tiny meteors are scintillating inwardly in their blood.

The blood of Christ at Golgotha, and the purity of the blood

1909-04-15 - notes from memory by Mathilde Scholl:

Hate is the most extreme expression of the I. And where is the I to be found? In the blood. Even our physical blood undergoes a change when this gate, this hardening process of the I, this becoming wooden, is transformed into love. If chemists only had sufficiently fine instruments they could detect the difference in the blood of, say, an ancient Indian and a Francis of Assisi. This spiritualization is expressed even in the physical. In the blood that flowed for humankind at Golgotha we have a symbol of 'hatelessness' through which we are able to transform every feeling of hate into love.

1914-02-10-GA148 (SWCC) mentions the etheric nature of the blood at Golgotha and how the etheric tableau of Man after death is affected by these forces

.. the part played by the blood in the physical body of Christ Jesus. The blood is one of the physical components of the body, and in the case of an ordinary human being it dissolves away at death in the physical Elements. This did not happen to that part of the blood in the body of Christ Jesus which flowed from the wounds on Golgotha. This blood was ‘etherised’, was actually taken up into the etheric forces of the Earth. The blood that flowed from the wounds on Golgotha became Ether-Substance. And perceiving this Ether-Substance gleaming and glistening in the ether-body after death, man knows it to be the young, fertile life by which he is borne onwards into the future.

These quickening, freshening life-forces pour into the human ether-body from yet another source. The Fifth Gospel reveals that after the body of Christ Jesus had been laid in the Grave, an undulating earthquake produced a rift in the earth into which the body of Christ Jesus fell. The rift then closed again, and as described in the Gospel of St. John: the clothes lay scattered around the empty Grave, hurled about the empty sepulchre by the tempest.

This is what flows into the human ether body: What had been received into the rift in the earth poured through the blood now agleam in the Ether, making this gleaming blood visible in the human ether-body. The ether-body expands after death and man sees it as a ‘firmament’ against which everything else stands out in relief. And the feeling arises: The body of Christ Jesus, empty of blood, spreads through the expanding ether-body like a basic substance. The body which had fallen into the chasm passed into the Earth, and the etherised blood now reveals itself in the tableau of the human ether-body, filling the tableau with life. And from this revelation arises the certainty: Mankind does not perish, but lives on as the spiritual essence of Earth-existence when the Earth falls away, just as the corpse falls away from the indwelling spiritual being on man. True, the ‘I’ and astral body guarantee freedom and immortality for man; but he would live on only for himself, he would pass over to Future Jupiter only to find himself in an alien world if the forces poured by the Christ Impulse into the Earth-sphere were not carried over to Future Jupiter.

Discussion

The 1911-12-31-GA134 quote above can be directly connected with the fact that Christ worked on the blood of Jesus purifying it during the three years, see the Mystery of silver.

Related pages

References and further reading