Migrations are part of the dynamic that arranges to accomodate the development of souls on Earth as part of certain folks, cultures and geographies, depending on their spiritual maturity. An important element underlying migrations is the fact that various geographical areas on Earth are characterized by different etheric conditions and formative forces working on Man.
Migrations take place between epochs and within an epoch. This topic page covers:
- the movement of the center of development on Earth with each epoch (and its corresponding main continent)
- migrations from the Atlantean sub races to different geographies (and the mapping to corresponding racial remnants in the Current Postatlantean epoch
- in the current Postatlantean epoch
- migrations of initiate-priest missions to mix with existing populations and establish new cultures in different geographies
- various migrations in more recent times (such as the Germanic tribes in the period of the 4th to 8th centuries, colonization and immigration into North America in the period of the 17th to 20th centuries)
The spectrum or range of various conditions for the development of humanity (depending on the spiritual maturity of the souls) is arranged by the spiritual guidance of the White Lodge and their Mystery Centers across the world. The goal is that different areas (forces, and races) can accomodate souls at various levels of maturity. This provides a ladder of development as souls incarnate in different races along their path.
At a higher level, the plan aims at accomodating the developmental goals for humanity in the current and next Sixth epoch, whereby the Current fifth cultural age and the next Sixth cultural age are of pivotal importance after the Mystery of Golgotha and the meeting of Two streams of development in the previous fourth cultural age (see also Christ Impulse - meeting of two streams).
- This is illustrated by Schema FMC00.438 on Two streams of development, which is to be put in context as part of The great journey of humanity (PDF file which provides an introductory overview with a selection of Schemas from the site, and zooms into the pivotal phases of the four epochs between the third and sixth epoch on Earth, and the crucial period of the next 3000 years which is pivotal in the transition of humanity between the current and next epochs.)
To understand how migrations fit in, one needs to consider the overall plan and its implementation. This requires to a) overview the period from the middle of the Lemurian epoch over the Atlantean epoch down to the Current Postatlantean epoch, and b) to understand the relationship between Planets hosting beings at various stages of evolution and evolving Human races in this period.
- geographical areas on Earth are characterized by different etheric conditions and formative forces working on Man
- the centers of the abnormal SoF corresponding to the influences of certain planetary spheres, are the main underlying cause for the current racial remnants in the current epoch, their different colour and physiognomy (see Schema FMC00.454 on Human races)
- Schema FMC00.211 shows Sigismund von Gleich's analysis of the human races in the Atlantean epoch, the geography of the cultural ages in the Postatlantean epoch, and the developments in the Lemurian epoch with five geographical focal points for planetary influences on Earth. More info in the Aspects section on Human races
- between epochs also, the location on Earth where the main development of humanity takes places, moves in a certain way .. as humanity follows the group soul in order to develop certain faculties (1909-10-27-GA115)
- mankind needed to migrate westwards in order to deveop speech, from Lemuria to Atlantis
- the Atlanteans had to migrate back eastwards in order to develop the sense of visualization
- to develop concepts in the soul life again a new direction had to be taken eastwards
Migrations from Atlantis
- see Schema FMC00.205 and variants
- two main stages in the Atlantean migrations have to be distinguished (1910-06-12B-GA121)
- the first stage in early Atlantean times caused the division of mankind into the five root races as different groups migrated to particular geographical areas across the world
- a second stage of migrations in later Atlantean times followed as other peoples were dispatched to those geographical areas of the Earth already colonized. The purpose of this second wave was to dispatch in a West-East direction those folk communities who were each under the guidance of an archangel. These archangels or guiding folk spirits that were directing these tribes and communities were at different stages of development. See also Schema FMC00.459
Culture-establishing migrations in Postatlantean epoch
- see Schema FMC00.453 and variants
- the creation of the cultural centers for the different cultural ages in the current Postatlantean epoch, by initiates, from a center in the Gobi desert
- "This cultural civilizing process spread out radially from a point in Central Asia somewhere in the neighborhood of the Gobi and Shamo deserts." (1904-XX-XX-GA090A)
- Note: contemporary sources state Gobi and Shamo are the same desert, whereby 'Gobi' is a Mongolian term and 'Shamo' is the Chinese term for sand desert. The Gobi Desert is the largest desert in Asia and covers extensive parts of north-, northwestern China and southern Mongolia with an approximate surface area of 1.295.000 km2 (extending 1.600 km from East to West and 1.000 km from North to South).
- the migrations in the 4th century with Germanic tribes and various peoples invading Europe and the Roman empire.
- See 1915-07-24-GA162 below which explains the spiritual scientific background for this, see also Two streams of development
- See also Note  in the Discussion area below, which puts it further in perspective of what was to follow
- magyar invasions (after the Normans), see 1904-12-13-GA051
When we know the secret of those currents that fashion Man and the Earth, we can understand the organization of the Earth, the distribution of oceans and continents, the migrations of men.
Schema FMC00.455 illustrates how the development of mankind - and its developmental goals in different epochs and cultural ages - requires different spiritual influences and etheric formative forces mapping to different geographies. As elaborated in 1909-10-27-GA115, this explains the different locations of the central continent for the different epochs (large arrows). Also within our Current Postatlantean epoch, it explains why the cultural center of different ages follows a certain curve (in blue, see also insert upper right from Sigismund von Gleich, see Schema FMC00.211). Observe that both movement follow a similar 'flat U' form at a different level in terms of epochs or cultural ages (for more info, see von Gleich)
Related, for further conditioning of Earth and Man by zodiacal spiritual influences, see Zodiac clock); whereby the Spirits of Form condition the epochs and great transitions of the Earth between them (see Spiritual hierarchies and their eigenperiods)
Schema FMC00.205 sketches the great migrations from Lemurian and Atlantean epoch (from Gunther Wachsmuth). Hence Lemuria and Atlantis are indicated as centers from which these people streamed out in the directions indicated by the arrows. The arrows themselves don't give final destinations but rather indicate directions. Note this has to be projected into the time dimension over very long time periods.
Another presentation with Schema FMC00.205A from Gunther Wachsmuth's 'The Evolution of Mankind'
Schema FMC00.205B is based on a drawing by Gunther Wachsmuth. Northern and Southern migration streams have been partially highlighted.
The link can be made with the statements by Rudolf Steiner that (a) the Jupiter mysteries were available in the Northern stream people of North and West Europe, as well that (b) the Germanic people were intrinsically related with the Persian culture. Furthermore it can also used to imagine another statement that (c) the Southern stream was more linked to the Lemurian epoch cultures (one can think into this: old souls, early descents and many incarnations), and the Northern was more related to the Atlantean epoch and culture (see quote B on Germanic mythology#1905-12-10-GA90B).
Furthermore note how the Black Sea area is really central between Northern and Southern streams (see Colchis Mysteries with the impulse for the intellectual soul in the fourth cultural age which brings these two streams together, see Buddha and Wotan Impulse, eg Schema FMC00.437), but also how it lies central between the East and West.
Schema FMC00.205C shows another map of Atlantean migrations by Francois De Wit, and the relationship with what is told in the Book of Genesis about how Noah and his three sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth, together with their wives, were saved from the flood to repopulate the Earth.
Below right is a map based on geographic identifications of Flavius Josephus (ca 100 AD) for the Sons of Noah: Japheth's sons in red, Ham's sons in blue, Shem's sons in green. Above right is a map by Robert Wilkinson (1823), whereby Shem is associated with southern Asia (red), Ham with Africa (green) and Japheth with Europe and northern Asia (yellow).
These streams can be correlated with Rudolf Steiner's description that "the cultural civilizing process spread out from a point in Central Asia in the Gobi desert." (1904-XX-XX-GA090A). Note that the Semites, and the Hamites (see also Schema FMC00.220 on Human races) in Africa, indeed appear in Rudolf Steiner's coverage (see Schema FMC00.453 below), for consistency with the sons Shem and Ham.
Schema FMC00.453 is a summary of an early (undated) lecture by Rudolf Steiner in 1904, where he describes the plan of the initiates of the White Lodge and the resulting waves of migrations in the Current Postatlantean epoch, missions whereby initiatives mixed with the local populations to establish cultural centers. They can be seen as the "inplanting of the branches" of the current human race as a mixture of these various populations into a soil consisting of intermingling remnant populations of earlier human races of the Hyperborean, Lemurian and Atlantean epochs.
- Timings for these initiate missions and migrations are not given in the lecture, see Schema FMC00.453A for a tentative mapping
- The second migration wave confirms the origin and timing of the ancient Druidic culture in Northwestern Europe, see Druidic and Trotten mysteries. This second wave is described extensively and sketches how the seeds planted lead and eventually result in later civilizations (not necessarily in the same age but later, though it is difficult to outline the exact periods of the ancient cultures).
- The third migration wave, although 'very complicated', is not described as extensively, but mentions the period of the period upto Alba Longa after the fall of Troje around the 12th century BC. Trojan civilization is positioned by historians in the period mapping to the third cultural age. Hence the interpretation that the third wave maps into the third cultural age and the Egyptian culture.
- See also 1904-07-26-GA090A and Schema FMC00.453A for a second exposure with additional info on the same topic
Schema FMC00.453A provides a summary table of the three waves of migrations in the Postatlantean epoch, with a tentative mapping to the cultural ages to position them historically in time. For the underlying rationale, see lectures and comments with Schema FMC00.453. It shows that seeds were planted much before the culture in a certain geography rose to the highlights in the period commonly described as characteristic for the cultural ages.
- The 1904-07-26-GA090A lecture explicitly confirms  what is in the undated 1904-XX-XX-GA090A lecture, that the first stream of migrations that went to ancient India already went out to Egypt. It also describes  the early seeds planted for the 'waiting' Northwestern European culture as part of the first and second migrations, see Druidic and Trotten mysteries and Germanic mythology.
- For that context of , see the left part of the table - more info on Two streams of development
- Though one of both lectures is undated, the two lectures are definitely distinct (and so not two versions of the same lecture) as both come from separate lecture notes by Marie von Sivers (who also numbered them as separate).
Schema FMC00.211 gives a schematic overview of Sigismund von Gleich's analysis of the human races in the Atlantean epoch, the geography of the cultural ages in the Postatlantean epoch, and the developments in the Lemurian epoch with the five geographical focal points for planetary influences on Earth (from RSL). The schema's illustrate a spiral movement, geographically speaking, in how the races or cultural ages 'roll off'.
Lecture coverage and references
is an excellent lecture called 'the migration of the races' that provides a detailed map of the main evolutionary currents (more than in any other lecture). It was first officially published in 2018 in volume GA090A, though it was published before in 1929 in Gaia-Sophia. More details about origin in that volume (p. 552): the date is unknown, and the titel 'About the migrations of the races' was seemingly added later.
The following extract was rephrased/SWCC from the introduction:
If we want to have a picture in our minds of the migrations of the current fifth Aryan root race, we must realize at the very outset that it is difficult to see clearly in this chaos. Descendants of many earlier races have continued to exist among us, these interminglings are difficult to unravel .. and that is the soil into which the branches of the current fifth Aryan root race were implanted [in the current Postatlantean epoch].
Thus we have to do with the product of various earlier streams:
- the Lemurian-Aryan
- the peoples of Southern Asia are remains of the population of the Lemurian epoch, whose descendants are still to be found in the interior of Australia.
- the Atlantean-Aryan
- in the previous fourth Atlantean root race there was a population which spread out like rays and was itself mixed with descendants of other races.
- remains of the Atlantean root race are to be found in Western and Northern Asia and in Southern Europe.
But all these civilizations have absorbed into themselves an even more ancient civilization:
- the Hyperborean
there are even remains of the hyperborean civilization in Siberia, Scandinavia, Northern Russia, and China
In a third phase, colonizers went to Southwest Asia, Egypt but also to Greece and Italy. Legends still retain memories to the initiates who came from Asia. Orpheus who came to Greece, Theseus, Kadmos; Moses initiated in Egypt. These all have taken place approximately at the same time. Human adepts, but workshipped as semi-gods.
The Europeans also came over from Atlantis to Western and Central Europe and here there developed a quite different teaching. Groups of people settled who were not yet advanced enough to be chosen to found new civilisations, but yet possessed in germinal form what in India came to expression in so magnificent a way, but which here remained at a much earlier stage. What had its start in Europe moved ever further and further towards Asia. A common teaching formed its foundation, but in Europe this remained at a somewhat primitive level.
Three different sub-races developed in Asia. Taking their start from Atlantis, a colony led by initiates traveled over to Asia. A special result of this was the ancient Indian civilisation, a second, the ancient Persian; the third result was the Egyptian-Chaldean civilisation: they all had a common initiation-source.
In Europe however groups always remained behind which fell away from what culminated with such magnificence in the three great civilisations. These separate cultural streams were distributed in Europe in the most varied way.
In Europe too there were initiates who formed Mystery Schools towards the end of the period of which we are speaking: they were called Druids: Drys means Oak. The strong oak was the symbol of the early European priest-teachers, for what dominated the peoples in the North was the thought that their old form of culture would necessarily have to decline. There the Twilight of the Gods was taught and the future of Christianity came to magnificent expression through these Northern prophets in what later became the Siegfried Saga. This may be compared with the Achilles Saga.
So think of Europe, Central Asia and Egypt as sown with the seed of what had developed under the influence of the Initiation Schools. These Initiation Schools sent out from their midst the founder of the Fifth [Fourth] Sub-Race, who had long been prepared in the shelter of the Mysteries. This is the personality who in the Bible is called Abraham. He came from Ur in Chaldaea and developed as an extract of the three older civilisations. The task which was represented in Abraham was to carry into the human realm all that had been held in veneration in the outside world; to create initiates who laid great value on what was human, in order to found the cult of the personality.
Out of the three Ancient Civilisations, through the initiation of the Jewish Patriarchs, this Fourth Civilisation, the primal Jewish, was derived. This we have as the Fourth Sub-Race, for there belong to it also the civilisations of Ancient Greece and Rome. The civilisations of Greece and Rome (Roman law) both become great just through this personal element, until eventually this thought incarnated, reaching its culmination in Christianity. So it is in this lesser racial branch that the actual stream of the Fourth Sub-Race makes its appearance. The Graeco-Latin stream is a higher form of the Judaic; here the cult of the personal is intensified. There is no contradiction between this descent to the deepest point and then the ascent.
Into all these streams others penetrate, for instance the Mongolian tribes. What originally came over from the West was related to what came with the Huns from the East. So from East and West something came together that was related: the Mongolian and Germanic tribes. Those who originated from the West were left-behind descendants of the Atlanteans, as were also the Mongolians from the East. Fundamentally both streams were related. It is always one stream which crosses another. Both, however, have a common native ground since they both originated from Atlantis.
the limited extract below just contains a few of the relevant phrases on migrations, for a longer extract see: Human races#1905-11-09-GA054
Part of the former Atlantean population migrated from Atlantis to Europe and farther to Asia and established colonies, a part stayed behind, so that we have the most manifold stages side by side.
.. if you consider the past spiritual-scientifically .. you find that our white civilised humanity originated from the fact that certain parts separated themselves from the Atlanteans and developed higher under other climatic conditions.
Certain parts of the Atlantean population stayed behind just on the former stages, so that we have to observe remains of the different Atlantean races in the population of Asia and America. However they have changed and differ from the original Atlantean population.
A part of this sub-race - it was very unlike the modern Jewish population but was still called Semitic rightly because of certain processes - moved to Asia and developed the intellectual culture which spread then over Europe, southern Asia and over the population of northern Africa.
Moreover, another train of Atlanteans went to America. There were rests of Lemurians and of Atlanteans who intermingled in many respects.
We can understand our race if we pursue it in two currents ..
- we have that current at first, which moves from the west, maybe from England to Asia. It probably gave cause for the Indian, the Near Eastern-Semitic, for the Indo-African-Semitic races as well as for the Arabian-Chaldean race.
- .. another current that did not progress so far which came maybe only to Ireland or Holland, or also to the area that the ancestors of the ancient Persians inhabited. There we have a belt of related population through the area of the Persians via the Black Sea to Europe.
Thus, we can verify two zones of human population.
- One extends from India over here and encloses the southern peninsulas of Europe;
- the other encloses the zones located to the north with different gradations. There we have the Aryan one and the different Semitic gradations in Asia and Africa; then in Greece and Italy the Greek-Latin population. However, we have to imagine them also in such a way that it originated from the mixture with the northern belt which also encloses the Persian population and everything that developed, like from undergrounds, the Slavic and the Germanic populations in the west, and that which provides the basis more or less of all, the ancient Celtic population. We can imagine that we had an ancient Celtic population in the west of Europe. This part of the current of peoples lies farthest to the west, while the Persian population is that part which went the farthest to the east.
- The Slavic and the Germanic peoples stand between; intermingled with the southern belt, these established the Greek-Latin race. You can prove it in the languages that a relationship of the population exists, which expresses itself the strongest in the deep relationship of the languages in the northern belt.
A new epoch commenced at the time of the migrations of the peoples and of the invasions. The heritage of the Graeco-Roman civilisation was taken over by the races of the North: the Celts, the Germanic peoples and the Slavs. We ourselves are living in this epoch. It is a later transformation of the Graeco-Roman culture, brought about by the invigorating impulses of new races under the influence of Christianity mingled with the leaven of the East which was brought into Europe by the Arabs. The essential mission of this epoch of civilisation is to adapt man to the physical plane to develop reason and practical logic, to immerse intelligence in physical matter so that matter may be understood and finally mastered. In this hard and difficult task which is reaching its culminating point in our own day, man has temporarily forgotten the higher worlds whence he came.
The achievements of Atlantis did not perish with it. The most important elements of everything that existed in the adepts' nursery was kept by a small core group of people when they left. This small group, guided by Manu, went into the area where the Gobi desert is today. There they recreated the earlier civilization and teaching, but now more for the thinking mind. The earlier powers of spirit were transformed into thoughts and signs. From there, from this centre, the different lines of civilization then went out like radii, like rays.
includes qualitative description ages current epoch
Then came the time in which an especially advanced portion of the human race, who lived in a region which today is on the bed of the ocean in the neighbourhood of present Ireland, first experienced that definite union with the etheric body and thus an increase of the intelligence. This portion of humanity began to journey eastwards under the guidance of the most advanced leader while gradually immense volumes of water submerged the continent of Atlantis.
The advanced portion of these peoples journeyed right into Asia, and there founded the centre of the civilisation that we call the Post-Atlantean Culture. From this centre civilisation radiated out; it proceeded from the groups of people who later moved farther to the east. There in Central Asia they founded in India the first civilisation, which still had an echo of the culture attained in Atlantis.
[the following extract clearly describes the bifurcation in the developmental streams]
The ancient Indian had not yet such a consciousness as we have today, but the capacity for it arose when these two points of the brain of which I have spoken coincided. Before this union there still lived a picture-consciousness in the Atlantean, through which he saw Spiritual beings. In the murmuring of the fountain he not only heard a clear language, but the Undine, who has her embodiment in the water, rose for him out of the spring: in the currents of air he saw Sylphs; in the flickering fire he saw the Salamanders.
All this he saw and from it have arisen the myths and legends which have been preserved with most purity in the parts of Europe where there remained remnants of those Atlanteans who did not reach India. The Germanic Sagas and Myths are the relics of what was still seen by the old Atlanteans within the vapoury masses. The rivers, the Rhine, for instance, lived in the consciousness of these old Atlanteans as if the wisdom, which was in the mists of ancient Nivelheim had been cast down into their waters. This wisdom seemed to them to be in the rivers, it lived within them as the Rhine Nixies or similar beings.
So here in these regions of Europe lived echoes of the Atlantean culture, but over in India another arose, that still showed remembrances of that picture world. That world itself had sunk from sight, but the longing for what was revealed in it lived on in the Indian. If the Atlantean had heard the voice of Nature's wisdom, to the Indian there remained the longing for the oneness with Nature, and thus the character of this old Indian culture is shown in the desire to fall back into that time where all this was man's natural possession. The ancient Indian was a dreamer. To be sure, what we call reality lay spread all around him, but the world of the senses was “Maya” in his eyes. What the old Atlantean still saw as hovering spirits was what the Indian sought in his longing for the spiritual content of the world, for Brahma. And this kind of going back towards the old dream-like consciousness of the Atlantean has been preserved in the Oriental training to bring back this early consciousness.
What are these seven kings? We remember that the original history of Rome leads back to ancient Troy. Troy represents a last result of the ancient priestly communities who organised states by the laws of the stars.
(p 17 in 1987 ed)
Atlantis – Wanderungen nach dem Osten – Wirkungen
Als unsere Vorfahren aus der alten Atlantis nach dem Osten hinüberwanderten, da war dieses Ereignis zugleich verknüpft mit dem Verlust des alten Hellsehens und mit dem Erringen der äußeren sinnlichen Wahrnehmung, mit dem Erringen von Fähigkeiten wie Zählen, Rechnen, Urteilen.
p 140 ed 1981
Atlantis – Ausgewanderte Völker
Die Atlantier, die mehr nach dem Westen hinübergezogen waren, wurden durch die damaligen Verhältnisse innerlich neutrale Naturen, kalt, gleichgültig; das wurde die kupferfarbige Bevölkerung Amerikas. Die anderen, die mehr nach Süden hinüberwanderten, wurden zur schwarzen Negerbevölkerung, und jene, die sich mehr nach dem Osten wandten, bildeten später die gelb(braune), malayische Bevölkerung.
Towards the end of the Atlantean period, the external and internal human conditions proved to be most favorable in a certain region of the earth's surface which was in the vicinity of present Ireland. This region is now covered with water. At that time the conditions there were especially favourable and in this region the most highly gifted of the Atlantean races developed, a race that was especially endowed with the capacity to rise to an independent human self-consciousness.
The leader of this people, which in spiritual science literature is usually designated the ancient Semites, was a great initiate who sought the most highly developed individuals of this people and migrated with them to the east through Europe as far as Asia into a region occupied now by the present Tibet. Thither migrated a relatively small but spiritually very highly developed fraction of the Atlantean peoples.
Toward the end of the Atlantean period, it so happened that gradually the westerly portions of Atlantis disappeared and became covered by the sea. Europe in its present form gradually arose. In Asia, the great Siberian regions were still covered with extensive bodies of water, but, especially in the south of Asia, there were regions of land which had already appeared, differently formed, however.
Some of the less advanced of the great mass of people joined with this germinal group which migrated from west to east. Many went with them a long distance, others not so far. But the peopling of ancient Europe came about for the most part through the migrations of great hordes of people out of Atlantis who settled there.
Other great groups of people who had been driven from other parts of Atlantis, even some from ancient Lemuria, had come into Asia at a still earlier period and now encountered each other during this migration. Thus peoples variously endowed and of very different spiritual capacities settled in Europe and Asia.
The small number who were led by that great spiritual individuality, Manu, settled there in Asia in order to foster the greatest possible spirituality. From there streams of culture flowed out into the various regions of the Earth and among the various peoples.
People who at that time migrated from west to east into the regions later called Germany were those who had retained, more or less, some degree of clairvoyance and who were still able at a certain time to perceive in the spiritual world.
And simultaneously with the migrations of that greatest of initiates and his followers into Tibet, whence he sent forth the first cultural colony into India, initiates who fostered the spiritual life in the Mysteries were left behind everywhere among the people of Europe.
Mysteries existed among these people, the Druid Mysteries, for example, but men no longer have any knowledge of them — for what is recounted is merely fantastic rubbish. It is a significant fact that at that time when the higher worlds were mentioned among the Druids or among the peoples of the regions of western Russia and Scandinavia where the Mysteries of the Trotts existed, there was always a large number who knew of these spiritual worlds.
Something similar also took place during the transition from the fourth epoch to ours. When one who with spiritual vision can review the course of time has passed back through the ages we have considered, the Graeco-Roman, the Babylonian-Egyptian, the ancient Persian and the ancient Indian and beyond the time of the great flood, he comes into the Atlantean epoch. We need not now consider it in detail but we must at least under-stand how this Atlantean civilization passed over into our own. There, too, the greater part of the Atlantean population was not sufficiently mature to develop farther, it was incapable of coming over into our epoch. A smaller part, living in a region near to our present Ireland, developed to the highest flower of the civilization of Atlantis and then journeyed towards the East.
We must clearly understand that this was only the principal stream.
There were always peoples who emigrated from the West to the East, and all the later peoples of Europe, of northern and central Europe, proceeded from the stream which then went from the West to the East. Now that most advanced part of the Atlantean population was under the guidance of a great leader of humanity and eventually settled down as a very small tribe of chosen individuals in Central Asia. From this point the colonists migrated to the various regions of civilization mentioned, to ancient India, to Persia, Egypt, Greece, etc.
This was the case also when our culture originated. Let as think of the time before the Atlantean flood. We have said that it was in the last third of the Atlantean epoch — which men experienced on the land now covered by the Atlantic Ocean — when a small group was formed in the neighbourhood of the present Ireland, which had reached the highest stage of Atlantean civilization, and this group then migrated to the East, whence all later civilizations have proceeded. Let us keep this clearly in mind, let us think of this portion of the earth which now forms the ocean west of Ireland, let us think of a migration of people starting from there and going towards the East and from it a number of tribes proceeding, which then populate Europe. All that is contained in the population of Europe originated in this way. The most gifted portion of the Atlanteans wandered towards central Asia; from there proceeded the various civilizations up to our own, as we have described. So we see that our present civilization originated in a small group of Atlanteans.
Atlantis, however, had seven consecutive stages just as our own civilization has seven stages which we know as the ancient Indian, ancient Persian, Assyrian-Babylonian-Chaldean-Egyptian-Jewish, the Graeco-Latin, our own and two further ones.
It was in the fifth stage when this emigration began; so that the specially chosen population of Atlantis which lies at the foundation of our culture is taken from the fifth Atlantean race, for in Atlantis we may speak of races.
A sixth and a seventh followed. These were, so to speak the lukewarm races. They also survived the great flood but there was no living sprouting force in them. They were related to the fifth Atlanteans civilization somewhat as the bark which is lignified and hardened is related to the sappy stem. These two races which followed the actual root-race were incapable of developing, they were overripe, so to speak.
This cataclysm, which ran its course in storms and upheavals of the elements of air and water, led to the disappearance of that continent inhabited by the human race before the Indian civilization — ancient Atlantis, situated between Europe, Africa, and America. It also led to the migration of peoples westwards and eastwards: westwards to settle in America and eastwards in the various countries of Europe, Asia, and Africa which had gradually assumed their present form.
p 70 ed 1979
Darin bestand der Übergang von der atlantischen Zeit zur nachatlantischen, daß der Blick der Menschen von der geistigen, astralisch-ätherischen Welt abgeschlossen und beschränkt wurde auf diese physische Welt. (Vorher) lebten sie zwischen göttlich-geistigen Wesenheiten.
Connected with this we find the following remarkable fact: we find that several emigrations left the Atlantean continent; that they consisted of human beings who, having hardened in various ways, went in different directions;
- those in whom the bones had hardened journeyed westward, and their last descendants were found when America was discovered.
- Those whose nutritive system had hardened went principally to Africa;
- others (the Malays) went towards Asia.
- Then there are those who formed the ancestors of the Mongolian race.
- The last to migrate were those who dwelt in the neighbourhood of the Ireland of today; those who had kept themselves pliant the longest. These wandered from the West towards the East, and left behind them certain communities of people all over the continent of Europe. The most advanced journeyed towards Asia, and there mixed in various ways with others who had come by different paths.
Only those people, who migrated from their homes in the neighbourhood of Ireland were really mature enough to be receptive of what the earth had to offer to their outward sight; and as they traveled from the West to the East they populated the various countries they passed through in which remnants of those people were found who had gone by other paths. With these they mingled, and from this union the various civilizations originated, while from those who were most backward when migration took place has sprung the European civilizations. GA105/19080811
We know that there was a realm in the neighbourhood of Ireland where dwelt the most advanced beings of the Atlantean epoch, those who were best prepared to pass through an advanced development. These now journeyed from the West to the East, populating Europe, where some remained at a particular stage of evolution, while others went further. The most advanced passed on to the neighbourhood of Central Asia, others into Africa. There were already in these parts some people left over from the older Lemurian and Atlantean epochs; these now mixed in diverse ways, and from them arose the people whom the Greeks represent in many artistic forms as the Satyr, the Hermes, and the Zeus types.
Let us now try to enter into the mentality of those who migrated from the West towards the East. They had risen in a certain way up to the point where they were fitted to enter upon a further development. They had not become ossified, and had within them the germs of a more perfect development, but they had retained a comparatively strong clairvoyant capacity. Among all the people who had gone forth from Atlantis the Europeans were most gifted with clairvoyance; it was less strong among those who peopled Africa. Those who had emigrated earlier into Asia, and who were among the most advanced, came upon a still older people who were in possession of a still older clairvoyance, so that there was much clairvoyance in those parts.
Then there was a certain small colony consisting of the most advanced men of the Atlantean epoch who had settled near the Gobi desert. What kind of people were these, and what do we mean when we say they were the “most advanced?” It means those least able to see into the spiritual world, for advancement consisted in their having proceeded from the spiritual world and having entered into the physical world. They were the people who felt constrained to say: “Formerly we had connection with the spiritual world, but we have it no longer.” This loss filled their hearts with sorrow; they longed for the spiritual world from which they had come and which they valued more than that in which they now dwelt.
Conditions varied among the different European populations. Under certain conditions many could still see into the spiritual worlds. When the Mysteries still existed in Europe, and Initiates — who through occult development could rise in full consciousness to the spiritual world — spoke of those worlds and of the beings dwelling there, or of the varied parts men had to play after death; when the initiates brought all this in mighty pictures before the people by means of myth and legend, they found some who understood them, for some still had vision. The peculiar conditions of life and of environment in ancient Europe caused even uninitiated persons to experience the spiritual world. Though they could not come in contact with the higher Gods they believed in the spiritual worlds and trusted in them. These worlds were real to them, hence they felt their humanity in a quite different way from other peoples. Let us try to enter into the feelings of these ancient Europeans. They said: “I am indeed connected with the Gods.” Through consciousness of this a strong sense of personality developed in them, a special sense of the divine worth of the human personality, and, above all, a strong sense of freedom. We must picture this state of feeling vividly, for it was this consciousness of the personality which the people of Europe took with them when they went south and peopled the Grecian and Italian peninsulas. We can note stragglers from those who were possessed of this feeling, particularly among the ancient Etruscans. Even in their art we can observe this strong sense of freedom, for it had a spiritual foundation. Before the rise of the true Roman kingdom there was an Etruscan population in the Italian peninsula which had a high degree of freedom in its system of government; on one hand it was somewhat hierarchical, and, on the other, free in the highest sense. Each town made provision for its own freedom, and an ancient Etruscan would have felt any kind of confederacy, in our sense of the word, as unbearable. Everything which passed southwards in the peninsula as a sense of freedom, or a feeling for personality, sprang from the causes we have mentioned.
Those other people who had gone the farthest into Asia included a small company from whom the divine spiritual world had withdrawn the most. In its place they had acquired something else, something that had been saved from the world, which had withdrawn into profoundest darkness — this was the ego, or the “I am.” They felt that what was preserved within them as the “I am” was the eternal core of their being, and that it had sprung from the spiritual world; they felt all the forms they had previously seen were like a sacred memory, and that their strength depended upon this firm core which remained within them. As yet they did not perceive the ego in its complete form; this only came later, but those who were the most advanced, who had descended most deeply, developed a certain tendency which they might have expressed as follows: What we have to treasure above all else is the consciousness of our divinity, consciousness of that in which is to be found the deepest memories of our soul. Even if this soul has forgotten the divine beings which once it knew, we can find the way back to them by looking within our own being — by being conscious of our ego. In short, the consciousness of a formless God was now evolved, a God who does not appear in outward form, but who must be sought within man's innermost being. This conception, which is a very old one, was transformed in the course of man's further development into the commandment: Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven image or likeness of thy God.
In the great migration towards the East there was another group which moved more towards Asia Minor and Africa, where the Chaldean and Egyptian civilizations were founded. Through them a further step forward was made in the conquest of the physical plane. Here the condition of the people was such that they no longer regarded what is of the senses as merely hostile or illusory. When they looked up to the stars they said: “Those stars are not Maya, they are not mere appearances!” They thought much about the stars, and studied how one star approached another and what changes took place in the constellations. They felt the stars were an outward expression of the ruling Gods; they were a script which the Gods had written what they saw was not merely appearance but a revelation of the Gods.
Now, there was formed within the third age of civilization a small company which separated off in a certain way and absorbed all that could be gained from ancient tradition as well as from recent knowledge. This small company, whose Initiates had preserved the ancient wisdom and the earlier companionship with the Gods, knew how to impart what they had gained as experience from the spiritual world, and they had also absorbed the wisdom of the Chaldeans — the writings of the Gods in space — as well as the wisdom of Egypt, which expressed the union of spirit with that which is physical. This group of people, who, in a certain sense, may be called the “chosen people,” had to make preparation for the greatest period in the world's history; they are the people of the Old Testament, who in their Testament possessed the greatest and most significant document regarding long-past events and also those that were to come. It is not only an error in learning, but a farce, when some historical work is thought even to approach the Old Testament in value; for it portrays in mighty pictures man's descent from divine heights, and shows at the same time how historical experiences are connected with cosmic events. All this is contained in the Old Testament, and, above all, its contents correspond exactly with the events of evolution.
Emigrations had taken place from Asia and Africa; these mingled with other streams coming from the North. Those that came from the East brought the firm conviction of the worthlessness of Maya, of the need to change the material kingdom of men into a kingdom of the spirit; these mingled with others who had gained a stronger feeling of personality. Those with the greatest spiritual force, who had remained longest behind in the emigration from West to East, met in Asia Minor and in the Grecian and Italian peninsulas; here the fourth age of civilization was built up, and the conquest of the physical world advanced another stage.
The regions of Atlantis were destroyed through colossal deluges. Human bodies had different forms at that time, but the souls that live in us today lived also in the ancient Atlanteans. Those were our souls. Then the water-catastrophe caused a movement of the Atlantean peoples, a great migration from west to east. We ourselves were these peoples. Toward the end of Atlantis all was in movement. We wandered from the west toward the east, through Ireland, Scotland, Holland, France, and Spain. Thus the peoples moved eastward and populated Europe, Asia, and the northern parts of Africa.
It must not be imagined that those who, in the last great migration, wandered out of the west into the regions that have gradually developed into Asia, Europe, and Africa, did not encounter other peoples. Almost all of Europe, the northern parts of Africa, and large parts of Asia were already inhabited at that time. These areas were not peopled from the west only; they had already been settled earlier, so that this migration found a strange population already established. We may assume that when quieter times set in, special cultural relations arose. There was, for instance, in the neighborhood of Ireland, a region where, before the catastrophe that now lies thousands of years behind us, there lived the most advanced portions of the entire population of the earth. These portions then migrated, under the special guidance of great individualities, through Europe to a region of central Asia, and from that point cultural colonies were sent out to the most diverse places. One such colony of the post-Atlantean time was sent from this group of people into India, finding a population that had been seated there from primeval times and had its own culture. Paying due heed to what was already present, these colonists founded the first post-Atlantean culture. This was many thousand years ago, and external documents tell us scarcely anything about it. What appears in these documents is much later. In those great compendiums of Wisdom called the Vedas, we have only the final echoes of a very early Indian culture that was directed by super-earthly beings and was founded by the Holy Rishis. It was a culture of a unique kind, and we today can form only a feeble idea of it because the Vedas are only a reflection of that primeval holy Indian culture.
In the latter Atlantean time men were different one from another, some having retained a high degree of clairvoyant ability. This faculty did not vanish suddenly, but was still present in many of the men who took part in the great migration from west to east. In others, however, it had already disappeared. There were advanced persons and retarded persons and, in accordance with the whole nature of evolution at that time, we can understand that the least advanced were those who were the most clairvoyant, for in a certain way they had remained stationary and had preserved the old Atlantean character. The most advanced were those who had already achieved a physical perceiving of the world, thus approaching our form of day-consciousness. It was they who, ceased to see the spiritual world clairvoyantly at night, and who during their waking hours saw objects with sharper contours. That little handful of whom we have already spoken, who were led by the greatest initiate (generally known as Manu *) and his pupils deep into Asia and thence fructified the other cultures, just this handful, being composed of the most advanced men of that time, first lost the ancient gift of clairvoyance for the ordinary relationships of life. For them the true day-consciousness, in which we see physical objects sharply contoured, became ever clearer. Their great leader led this group farthest into Asia, so that they could live in isolation; otherwise they would have come too closely in touch with other peoples who still preserved the old clairvoyance. Only because they remained separated from other peoples for a time could they grow into a new type of man. A colony was established in inner Asia, whence the great cultural streams could flow into the most varied peoples.
Northern India was the first country to receive its new cultural current from this center. It has already been pointed out that these little groups of cultural pioneers nowhere found un-populated territory. Earlier still, before their great migration from west to east, there had been other wanderings, and whenever new stretches of land rose from the sea, they were peopled by the wanderers. The persons sent out from this colony in Asia had to mix with other peoples, all of whom were more backward than they who had been led by Manu. Among these other peoples were many persons who had retained the old clairvoyance.
It was not the custom of the initiates to establish colonies as this is done today; they colonized in a different way. They knew that they had to start with the souls of the persons whom they met in the lands that were to be colonized. The emissaries did not impose what they had to say. They reckoned with what they found. A balance was reached that took into account the needs of the old inhabitants. This reckoned with their religious views, which were based on the memory of earlier epochs, and also with the old clairvoyant disposition. So it was natural that only a handful of the most advanced could develop true concepts. The great masses could form only ideas that were a sort of compromise between the old Atlantean and the post-Atlantean attitudes. Therefore, we find in all these countries, in India, in Persia, in Egypt, whenever the different post-Atlantean cultures appeared, religious ideas which for that age are less advanced, less cultivated; which are nothing but a sort of continuation of the old Atlantean ideas.
Those are the peoples of Europe of whom we were able to say in the last public lecture that their strong feeling of personality was from the beginning their essential feature. ... Thus for example there was that particular part of the population that stayed in Europe whose characteristics were as I have described, and they led an independent existence up till much later times. They did not concern themselves about other people; but those that migrated into the regions already colonised by peoples with various shades of dark skin, and mixed with them, acquired every possible shade of skin colour. ... Therefore in western Asia and partly in North Africa and the countries of Europe, too, in earlier times, you find a people with a strong inner ego-feeling, but who on the whole were not given to losing themselves in the outer world; their inner character was strong and firm, but it did not set its imprint on the bodily nature. ... In fact the European peoples had not as yet quite descended into their physical bodies. They turned their feeling of personality inward. And we would find this more and more the further back we went.
was further developed in Sigismund von Gleich (see References below)
[Movements <-> group soul <-> faculties]
It was under the influence of a group soul that man had to develop speech. In what manner do group souls operate on earth? In animals the current of the group soul passes through the spinal cord horizontally, and these force currents are in continual motion. The force currents running downward from above move constantly around the earth, as they did around the Old Moon. They don't remain in one spot but move around the earth retaining their vertical direction of influence. If men were to learn to speak under the influence of a group soul, they could not remain in one place, they had to migrate. They had to move toward the group soul. Never could they have learned to speak if they had remained in one spot.
What direction, then, would men have to take if they were to learn to speak?
We know that the etheric currents flow from right to left and the physical ones from left to right, and this is the case not only in Man but on the Earth as well. Now, where are the group souls that endow man with speech? Let us look at the Earth in its peculiar development. Man learned to speak at a time when his outer structure was already complete. Strong currents were therefore needed because the larynx had first to be transformed from a soft substance that in no way resembled a larynx. This called for special conditions on Earth.
Suppose we stand facing east. There flow in us from left to right the currents connected with the formation of the physical body. This current exists outside us as well; it was present during the formation of the Earth.
- Running from north to south are those strong currents that produce solid physical matter.
- From the other direction, from the south, flow the etheric currents that lack the tendency to solidify the Earth.
This explains the lopsidedness, the lack of symmetry on the Earth. In the northern hemisphere we find the great continents, in the southern, the vast oceans; the tendency of the earth was asymmetrical.
From the south the current acts that is of the same nature as the one that runs from right to left in Man, but while the current from back to front streams outward, the one from front to back originates in the sentient body and enters the sentient soul.
[speech: Lemuria -> Atlantis]
With all this in mind we understand why the attainment of speech called for a current passing outward from within; this current had to encounter a group soul current in order that the two could be dammed up in man's own organism. Man had to move toward a current that could act upon his astral element. He could therefore go neither toward the north nor toward the south, but had to take a direction at right angles to these. It was latitudinally that man had to proceed when he was acquiring speech, that is, from east to west. At that time he inhabited ancient Lemuria, where today we have the ocean lying between Asia and Africa. Thence, in order to learn to speak, he migrated westward into old Atlantis, to meet the group soul that was to engender speech in him. There he had to develop the organism suitable for speech, and thus it was in old Atlantis that he learned to speak.
The next step was to develop the sense of visualization by means of the speech Man had acquired, but in order to do this he could not continue in the same direction. He had to proceed in a way that would cause the same current to act from the opposite direction. Recall here what was said in the last lecture concerning the origin of sound and of visualization. Sound comes into being when we subconsciously convert a melody into a harmony, ignore the fundamentals themselves, and mentally hear only the harmony produced by the harmonics (overtones); visualization arises when we push back and disregard this harmony of the harmonics as well. So, if we are to develop the sense of visualization, we must destroy on the one hand what we had built up on the other. We must face about and proceed in the opposite direction. One element of speech has to be suppressed, the harmonics must be pushed back, if we are to develop visualization.
The old Atlanteans had to face about and migrate eastward; by doing this they were able effectively to develop the sense of visualization. This could not have been accomplished if they had continued westward. It was the tragic fate of the American aborigines to migrate in the wrong direction. They could not hold their ground, but had to yield to those who had migrated properly and returned to them only later.
In this way a great deal becomes clear. When we know the secret of those currents that fashion man and the Earth we can understand the organization of the Earth, the distribution of oceans and continents, the migrations of men. Anthroposophy leads us into that life through which the outer world becomes transparent and comprehensible.
[Current epoch - development in the first cultural ages]
Evolution proceeds. Humanity was not destined to stop at visualizations but to achieve concepts as well, and in order to accomplish this it had to ascend from mere visualizations to the soul life proper. After the sense of visualization, the sense of concepts had to be developed, and again a new direction had to be taken. In order to gain the life of visualizations, humanity — or as much of it as comes into consideration — moved eastward, but pure concepts could be acquired only by returning in a westward direction.
We could similarly present the migrations of peoples in the four post-Atlantean periods from an anthroposophical viewpoint, and you would see a wondrous interplay of spiritual forces at work upon the whole shaping of man, and of what comes to expression in forming the Earth.
What is now Europe, Asia, Africa, became gradually colonized by the descendants of the Atlanteans. Various folk established their abode in these continents. They stood at varying degrees of development, but also at varying degrees of depravity. In the midst of these migrating peoples marched the initiates, the guardians of the oracle mysteries.
p267 ed 1962
Damals erhielt die Erde durch diese Stürme ein neues Antlitz. Auf der einen Seite kamen Europa, Asien und Afrika allmählich zu den Gestalten, die sie gegenwärtig haben. Auf der anderen Seite Amerika. Nach diesen Ländern gingen große Wanderzüge. Verschiedene Völker schlugen da ihre Wohnsitze auf. Sie standen auf verschiedenen Höhen der Entwickelung, aber auch auf verschiedenen Höhen des Verderbnisses. Und in ihrer Mitte zogen die Eingeweihten, die Behüter der Orakel-Geheimnisse. Diese begründeten in verschiedenen Gegenden Stätten, in denen die Dienste der Venus, des Jupiter und so weiter in gutem, aber auch in schlechtem Sinne gepflegt wurden.
Die nachatlantische Menschheit hat sich physisch aus denjenigen atlantischen Vorfahren herausgebildet, bei denen schon eine solche Verfestigung der körperlichen Gestalt eingetreten war, daß diese den nunmehr naturwidrig gewordenen Seelenkräften nicht nachgaben. Diejenigen Menschenformen, welche bildsam geblieben waren, wurden zu Körpern für solche Seelen, welche in hohem Maße den schädlichen Einfluß des gekennzeichneten Verrates erfahren haben. Sie waren zu baldigem Aussterben bestimmt
see quote A on: Human races#1910-06-12B-GA121
When the face of the Earth was changed as a result of the Atlantean deluge, the people then living on the continent of Atlantis moved from the West across to the East in two main streams, one taking a more northerly, the other a more southerly course.
- One stream in this great movement of Atlantean peoples through Europe towards Asia spread to the region around the Caspian Sea,
- while another passed through the land we now call Africa.
Over in Asia a kind of confluence of these two streams took place, as when two currents meet and a vortex is formed.
[editor: see the green and blue flows on Schema FMC00.205B, and relation with the great war and conflict on Turanian stream (1910-09-01-GA123)]
The people who had spread to the East after the great Atlantean catastrophe were at very different stages of evolution; it can be said that the level of moral and spiritual development was highest in those who went farthest East. The dawning faculty of external perception was like the opening of a new world, revealing with ever greater clarity the grandeur and splendour of the outer world of the senses. This faculty was especially characteristic of the people who settled to the North of present-day India, in the regions extending to. the Caspian Sea, as far as the Oxus and Jaxartes. In this region of Asia there had settled groups of people from whom many racial streams spread out in different directions, one such stream being the ancient Indian people whose spiritual view of thc world has often been characterized.
Soon after the Atlantean. Flood, indeed to some extent - while it was still in process, the sense-awareness of external reality had already developed among this group of people in Middle Asia. But at the same time, in the human beings who had incarnated there, a kind of memory-knowledge persisted, a living recollection of what they had experienced in the days of Atlantis. This characteristic was strongest in those who went down into India. They had, it is true, great understanding of the splendour of the external world; their faculties of observation and sense-perception were more developed than those of the other peoples, but. at thc same time their remembrance of the ancient spiritual powers of vision in Atlantis was vivid and strong. Hence there arose in them an intense longing for the spiritual world which they remembered; it was easy for them to gaze again into that world — but they also had the feeling that what was presented to the external senses was maya, illusion. And so in these people too the impulse arose not to pay particular attention to the outer world of sense but to do everything possible to enable the soul — now through development deliberately induced, through yoga — to rise to the realm where it could receive the revelations which in the days of old Atlantis had come directly from the spiritual world.
This tendency to despise the outer world, to regard it as illusion and to follow only those impulses which led to the spiritual, was less strongly developed in the people who remained farther North. But they were in a very tragic situation. The innate qualities of the ancient Indian people were such that it was comparatively easy for any one of them to undergo a definite training in Yoga enabling him to rise once again into the realms he had known in Atlantean times. It was easy for such a man to overcome, what he regarded as illusion. He overcame it in acts of cognition, and his supreme conviction was this: The sense-world is maya, is illusion; but if I make efforts to develop my soul I shall reach the world lying behind the sense-world! Thus it was through an inner process that the Indian succeeded in overcoming what he regarded as maya.
The character of the more northerly peoples was different. They were the Persians, the Medes, the Bactrians — known in history as Aryans in the narrower sense. In them too there was a strong tendency towards the development of external perception, external intellectuality. But the urge to achieve through inner development, through some form of Yoga, what the Atlanteans had experienced quite naturally, was not particularly marked. Recollection of the past was not strong enough in these more northerly peoples to become a striving to overcome, through knowledge, the illusion of the outer world. Their attitude of soul was not the same as that of the Indians. The attitude of an Iranian, a Persian, a Mede, might be expressed in modern words somewhat as follows: If we once dwelt in the spiritual world, experiencing and perceiving realities of spirit and of soul, and now find ourselves transplanted into the physical world we see with our eyes and grasp with the brain-bound intellect, the cause of this does not lie in man alone; what has to be overcome cannot be overcome merely in the inner being of man. Nothing much would result from that ! An Iranian would have said: It is not only in man that a change has taken place; Nature herself and everything on the Earth must also have changed when man descended from divine-spiritual realms. It cannot therefore be right to leave the surrounding world just as it is, saying simply: This is maya, illusion, but WC will disregard it and rise into the spiritual world! In that way we shall, it is true, bring about a change in ourselves but not in the world around us. — Therefore the attitude of an Iranian did not allow him to say: maya is outspread around me; I will transcend it, will overcome it in my own being and so reach the spiritual world. — No, he said: man belongs to and is a member of the world around him. Therefore if that which is divine in him, and has descended with him from divine-spiritual heights, is to be transformed, not only what is within him must be changed back to its former state, but also everything in the outer world around! — And this was what gave the people the impulse to take an active and vigorous share in transforming thc world.
Whereas in India men said: The world has fallen; what it now presents is maya—in the more northerly regions they said : True, the world has fallen, but it is our task to change it in such a way that it becomes spiritual again. Contemplation, contemplative understanding — this was basically characteristic of the Indian people. Their attitude was simply that sense-perception is illusion, maya. Activity, physical energy, the will to transform external Nature — these were the basic characteristics of the Iranian and other peoples living in regions North of India. They said: The world around us has fallen from the Divine but man is called upon to lead it back again to the Divine! And the innate traits of the Iranian people were sublimated and charged with measureless energy in the spiritual leaders who went forth from the Mysteries.
What took place towards the East and South of the Caspian Sea can only be adequately understood, even outwardly, by comparing it with conditions still farther to the North, that is to say in the regions bordering on the Siberia and Russia of to-day, and extending even into Europe. Here there were people who had preserved much of the ancient clairvoyance and in whom a kind of balance could be held between the faculty of the old spiritual perception and that of material perception, of the new intellectual thinking. Very many among them were still able to look into the spiritual world. This faculty of vision — which had already degenerated and become, as we should say nowadays, a lower astral clairvoyance had in its character a certain effect upon the general evolution of mankind. That this lower form of clairvoyance produces a very definite type of human being, a definite trait of character in those endowed with it, was clearly evident in these people. It was innate in them to demand from surrounding Nature what they needed for their sustenance while expending the minimum of effort themselves. They knew that divine-spiritual Beings are present in the plants, the animals, and so on, because they actually beheld them; they knew that these Beings are the powers behind all physical creation. But this knowledge prompted them to demand that without any effort on their own part the divine-spiritual Beings by whom they had been placed in existence should provide for their sustenance. Many things could be quoted as expressions of the disposition and tenor of soul prevailing in these peoples with their decadent, astral clairvoyance.
In the period which it is important for us to consider now, all these peoples were nomadic, having no settled habitations; they wandered about as herdsmen, without preference for any particular locality, careless with what the Earth had to offer and only too ready to destroy anything around them when they needed it for their sustenance. These people were not called upon, nor indeed were they qualified, to do anything to raise the level of culture, to transform the Earth.
Thus there arose what is perhaps one of the greatest antitheses in the whole of post-Atlantean evolution: the antithesis between these more northerly peoples and the Iranians.
see further on: Turanian stream
When the Atlantean catastrophe took place, great bodies of people gradually wandered from Atlantis, that ancient continent which lay where the Atlantic Ocean is today, towards the East, and peopled the continents now known as Europe, Asia and Africa.
- We shall not at present consider the few who went westward, whose descendants were found in America by its discoverers.
- When the Atlantean catastrophe took place, the body of people which then migrated towards the East did not consist merely of the four castes which settled down in India and there gradually differentiated themselves, but there were seven castes, and the four which appeared in India were the four higher castes. Besides the fifth, which was completely despised and which in India formed, as it were, an intermediate body of the population, besides these pariahs there were other castes which did not accompany them as far as India, but remained behind in various parts of Europe, Asia Minor and especially Africa. Only the more highly developed castes reached India, and those who remained in Europe had entirely different qualities.
Indeed, one can only understand what took place later in Europe when one knows that the more advanced sections of humanity in those days reached Asia, and that in Europe, forming the main body of the population left behind, were those who furnished the possibility for very special incarnations.
[betrayal mysteries in Atlantean epoch]
If we wish to understand the special incarnations of souls in the most ancient European times in the general mass of the population we must take into account a remarkable event which took place in the Atlantean epoch. At a certain stage in Atlantean development great secrets of existence were betrayed; these were great truths, concerning life, which are of infinitely greater importance than all those to, which post-Atlantean humanity has since attained. It was essential that this knowledge should have been limited to small circles, but owing to the violation of the mysteries, great bodies of the Atlantean population became possessed of occult knowledge for which they were not yet ripe. In consequence of this, their souls were at that time driven, as one might say, into a condition which was a moral descent, so that there remained on the path of goodness and virtue only those who later went over to Asia.
[population in Europe]
- You must not, however, imagine that the whole population of Europe consisted only of people in whose souls, were individuals who through being misled in the Atlantean epoch had suffered a moral downfall.
- Here and there in this European population were others who during the great emigration to Asia had remained behind to act as leaders. Thus, all over Europe, Asia Minor and Africa there were people who simply belonged to castes or races providing the requisite conditions for misguided souls to live in their bodies and there were also other better and more highly developed souls who remained behind to guide those who did not go on to Asia. The best places for these souls who had to assume the leadership at that time — in the age in which they Indian and Persian civilisations developed — were the more northerly parts of Europe, the regions where the oldest mysteries of Europe have flourished. Now they had a kind of protective arrangement as regards what had previously taken place in old Atlantis. In Atlantis temptation came to the souls described, through wisdom, mysteries and occult truths being given them for which they were not ready. Therefore in the European Mysteries the treasures of wisdom had to be guarded and protected all the more. For this reason the true leaders in Europe in post-Atlantean times withdrew themselves entirely and they preserved what they had received as a strict secret.
[Europe - Brahmins]
We may say that in Europe also there were persons who might be compared with the Brahmins of Asia, but these European Brahmins were not outwardly known as such by anyone. In the strictest sense of the word they kept the sacred secrets absolutely secluded in the Mysteries, that there might be no repetition of what had once taken place in the Atlantean epoch among the souls whom they were now leading onwards. Only through wisdom being protected and most carefully guarded did it come about that these souls were able to uplift themselves; for differentiation does not take place in such a way that a certain portion of humanity is destined from the beginning to take a lower rank than another, but that which is made lower at a certain time is to develop higher again at another period. But the conditions must be formed for this end to be attainable. Hence it came about that in Europe there were souls who had fallen into temptation and had become immoral, but they were now guided according to wisdom which proceeded from deeply hidden sources.
[Europe - Warriors]
Now, the other castes who had gone to India had also left members behind in Europe. The members of the second Indian caste — the Warrior caste — were those who then chiefly attained to power in Europe. Where the wise teachers — that is, those who corresponded to the Indian Brahmins — entirely withdrew, and gave their counsels from hidden sanctuaries, the Warriors came out among the people, in order to improve and uplift them according to the counsels of those ancient European priests. It was this second caste that wielded the greatest power in Europe in primeval times, but in their way of life they were guided by the wise teachers who remained hidden.
Thus it came about that the leading personalities in Europe were those who shone by virtue of the qualities of which we spoke yesterday — valour and bravery. Whereas in India, wisdom was held in the highest esteem and the Brahmins were revered because they explained the sacred writing; in Europe bravery and valour were the most valued and the people only knew of the divine mysteries through those who were filled with valour and bravery. The civilisation of Europe continued under these influences for thousands of years and gradually souls were improved and uplifted. In Europe, where souls existed who were the successors of the people who had undergone temptation, no real appreciation of the caste system of India could develop. The souls were mingled and interwoven. A division, a differentiation into castes such as existed in India did not arise. The division was rather between those who guided in an upper class, who acted as leaders in various directions, and the class that was led. The latter consisted principally of souls who had to struggle upward.
[Europe: gradual moral improvement]
When we look for the souls which gradually struggled upwards out of this lower class, and which from being tempted developed higher, we find them chiefly in a part of the European population of which modern history tells but little. Century after century this people developed in order to rise to a higher stage, to recover again, as it were, from the heavy set-back the souls had received in the Atlantean epoch. In Asia there was a continuation in the progress of civilisation; in Europe, on the other hand, there was a change from the former moral collapse into a gradual moral improvement.
The people in Europe remained in this condition for a long time, and improvement only came about through the existence of a strong impulse in these souls to imitate that which they saw before them. Those who lived and worked among the people as the braver among them were, looked up to as ideals and patterns, as leaders or chiefs, they were those who were called Fürsten (princes) and were imitated by the people at large. Thus the morality of the whole of Europe was raised through those souls mingling as leaders amongst the people.
[development of soul vs race]
Thereby something else became necessary in European development. If we wish to understand this, we must distinguish between the development of a single soul and that of a whole race. The two must not be confused.
A human soul can develop in such a way that in one incarnation it embodies itself in a particular race. If in this race it gains certain qualities, it may re-embody itself in a later incarnation in an entirely different one; so that we may find incarnated in Europe at the present day souls which in a previous incarnation were embodied in India, Japan or China. The souls do not by any means remain in the same race, for soul development is quite different from race development, which goes its peaceful way forward.
see also: Two streams of development, and Wotan Impulse
These two streams had to meet, had to work upon one another in the evolving humanity.
What would have happened if only the Latin knowledge had developed further?
Well, this Latin knowledge would have been able to pour itself out over the successors of the primitive European population: up to a certain time it has even done so. It is hypothetically conceivable, but it could not really have happened, that the original European population should have experienced the after-working of the dried up, fading knowledge.
For then, what these souls would have received through this knowledge would gradually have led to men's becoming more and more decadent; this drying, parching knowledge would not have been able to unite with the forces which kept mankind living. It would have dried men up. Under the influence of the after effects of Latin culture, European humanity would in a sense have been parched and withered. People would have come to have increasingly refined concepts, to have reasoned more subtly and have given themselves up more and more to thought, but the human heart, the whole human life would have remained cold under these fine spun, refined concepts and ideas.
I say that that would be hypothetically conceivable, but it could not really have taken place. What really happened is something very different. What really happened is that the part of humanity that had life but not knowledge streamed in among those people who were, so to say, threatened with receiving only the remains of the Latin heritage.
Let us envisage the question from another side.
- At a definite period we find distributed over Europe, in the Italian peninsula, in the Spanish peninsula, in the region of present France, in the region of the present British Isles, certain remains of an original European population; in the North the descendants of the old Celtic peoples, in the South the descendants of the Etruscan and ancient Roman peoples. We meet with these there, and in the first place there flows into them what we have now characterised as the Latin stream.
- Then at a definite time, distributed over various territories of Europe, we meet with the Ostrogoths, the Visigoths, the Lombardi, the Suevi, the Vandals, etc. There is an age when we find the Ostrogoths in the south of present Russia, the Visigoths in eastern Hungary, the Langobardi or Lombard's where today the Elbe has its lower course, the Suevi in the region where today Silesia and Moravia lie, etc. There we meet with various of those tribes of whom one can say: they have ‘life’ but no ’knowledge.’
Now we can put the question: Where have these peoples gone to? We know that for the most part they have disappeared from the actual evolution of European humanity. Where have the Ostrogoths, the Visigoths, the Langobardi, etc. gone? We can ask this.
In a certain respect they no longer exist as nations, but what they possessed as life exists, exists somewhat in the following way. My dear friends, let us consider first the Italian peninsula, let us consider it still occupied by the descendants of the old Roman population. Let us further imagine that on this old Italian peninsula there had been spread abroad what I have designated Latin knowledge, Latin culture; then the whole population would have dried up.
If exact research were made, it would be impossible not to admit that only incredible dilettantism could believe that anything still persists today of a blood relationship with the ancient Romans. Ostrogoths, Visigoths, Lombardi, marched in, and over these there streamed the Latin heritage — though merely mentally as seed of knowledge — it streamed over-the life-without-knowledge, and this gave it substance for continuing. Into the more southern regions there came a more Norman-Germanic element. Thus there streamed into the Italian peninsula from the European centre and the East a life-bearing population. Into Spain there streamed the Visigoths and the Suevi in order later to unite with the purely intellectual element of the Arabs, the Moors. Into the region of France there streamed the Franks and into the region of the British Isles, the Anglo-Saxon element.
The following statement expresses the truth. If the southern regions had remained populated by descendants of the old Romans, and the Latin culture had gone on working in them, they would have faced the danger of completely losing the power of developing an ego-consciousness. Hence the descendants of ancient Rome were displaced and there was poured into this region where Latinism was to spread, what came from the element of the Ostrogoths and Lombardi. The blood of Ostrogoths and Lombardi as well as Norman blood absorbed the withering Latin culture. If the population had remained Romans they would have faced the danger of never being able to develop the element of the Consciousness-soul.
Thus there went to the south in the Langobardi and the Ostrogoths what we can call the Wotan-Element, Spirit and Life. The Wotan-Element was, so to say, carried in the blood of the Langobardi and Ostrogoths and this made the further evolution and unfoldment of this southern civilisation possible.
Thus we can say that the part of mankind which has been race, which, as race, was the successor of the old Europe, — of the Europe from which the Roman influence proceeded and which itself became the successor of Rome, wholly for the south, largely for the north — has simply died out. Their blood no longer persists. Into the empty space left, there has poured in what came from Central Europe and the European East. One can therefore say: the racial element both of the European South and West is the Germanic element which is present in various shadings in the British Isles, in France, in Spain and in the Italian peninsula, though in this last completely inundated by the Latin influence. The racial element therefore moves from East to the West and South, whereas the knowledge-element moves from South to North. It is the race-element which moves from the East to the West and South and along the West of Europe to the North, and gradually flows away towards the North. If one would speak correctly, one can talk of a Germanic race-element,-but not a Latin race. To speak of a Latin race is just as sensible as to speak of wooden iron; because Latinism is nothing that belongs to race, but something that has poured itself as bloodless knowledge over a part of the original European people. Only materialism can speak of a Latin race, for Latinism has nothing to do with race.
In 1309 the matter was quickly dealt with — the Pope was transferred to Avignon and the next decades witnessed the endless quarrels between popes and anti-popes associated with this transference of the papal court. And a victim of this conflict within the Church was the Order of the Templars, which had been loosely associated with the Papacy, though of course its relationship to Christianity was totally different. The Order was suppressed in 1312 shortly after the removal of the Pope to Avignon. This is a turning point in modern history and we must consider this turning point not only in respect of its factual content, but as a symptom, if we wish gradually to discover the reality concealed behind it.
Let us now turn our attention to other symptoms of a similar kind at the time of this turning point in history. As we survey the continent of Europe we are struck by the fact that its life, largely in the Eastern areas, is profoundly influenced by those events which operate in the course of history after the fashion of natural phenomena. I am referring to the continuous migrations, beginning with the Mongol invasions in the not far distant past, which poured in from Asia and introduced an Asiatic element into Europe.
When we link an event such as the transference of the Papacy to Avignon with these invasions from the East we establish important criteria for a symptomatology of history. Consider the following: in order to understand not the inward and spiritual, but the external and human tendencies and influences which were connected with the event of Avignon and prepare the ground for it, you need not look beyond a coherent complex of human acts and decisions. But you will find no such coherent pattern of events when you consider the time between the Mongol invasions and the later penetration of the Turks into Europe. But when studying any historical event, a complex of facts of this kind, you must consider the following if you really wish to arrive at a symptomatology of history.
We must realize that, during this continuous confrontation, a colonizing activity began which carried the peasants from Central to Eastern Europe and in later years from the Rhine to Siebenbürgen. These peasant migrations, through the mingling of Central and Eastern European elements, had a profound influence upon the later development of life in these areas.
is a lecture titled Migrations (The migration of people in the past and the present) - but more in a social rather than a historical context
Today we should really learn to feel that in the great masses which are not led, but misled by their leaders, there is something which asserts itself as a remnant from that time which is designated — but erroneously — as the migration of the people. At that time, certain barbarian tribes came to the fore, as it were, and they absorbed the very impulses which the more highly developed nations were no longer able to receive.
During the present time we also have a migration of people; this migration, which is forcing its way to the surface, does not start from any definite place, but it comes from the whole sub-stratum, the proletarian sub-stratum of humanity. This is the essential point. It is necessary to, face this migration of people, to meet it.
Let us take the following hypothesis. Suppose that everything which is described in history books as the migration of people had really taken place — all these migrations of the Goths, the Huns, and later on, of the Mongolians, the migrations of the Vandals, the Suevi, etc. Imagine that these tribes had not encountered the stream of Christianity, when they migrated from the East to the South-West. Imagine that this stream of Christianity had not come; think what a difference this would have made in the world! The whole subsequent epoch can only be thought of, if we bear in mind the fact that these barbarian tribes came over from the East to the South West, and that they encountered the stream of Christianity.
Today the proletarian element rises out of the depths. And this proletarian element must be met with a spiritual element which comes from above! You might say that aspiritual-scientific influence should be exercised upon social conditions, upon the conception of the world.
Those who do not wish to believe that a new spiritual revelation comes towards this migration of people, which now follows a vertical, and not a horizontal direction, those who remain by the old spiritual revelation suited to the horizontal direction, in short, those who prefer to remain by the Roman way of propagating Christianity and do not wish to become acquainted with the new revelation of Christ Who passed through the Mystery of Golgotha, those people lose a great deal; they lose as much as might have been lost in the Middle Ages if the barbarian stream, which rolled from the East to the South West had not encountered the spreading current of Christianity.
Also at that time, the cultured men of Greece and of Rome stood between the current of Christianity and the barbarian stream.
Today all the people who cling to old ideas, under the guidance of the so-called intelligentsia, particularly under the guidance of modern science, which has proved so unfruitful in the social field, today all these people stand between,the spiritual stream which should flow down to the proletarian stream and this current which flows upwards.
The highlands of Turan are the starting point of the Egypto-Chaldean and Greek cultures.
See also Schema FMC00.453A. The GA096-GA097 lectures on Turanian stream describe the Turanian adept school of the White lodge.
Take, for instance, the people who over-ran the Roman Empire — the Goths, the Vandals, the Lombards, the Herules. Before the migrations had begun, thus before the fourth century A.D. which is for us such an important turning-point, these men had spiritual life away in the East which culminated in a certain religious insight, in certain religious ideas, which pervaded everything; and the effects of these experiences influenced every aspect of daily life. Before the migrations began these people have had a long period of settled life. It was while they were thus settled that they first experienced the southern oriental peoples, from whom the Indian, Persian and succeeding cultures sprang, had experienced at a much earlier time; they experienced what we can call a religion which was closely connected with the blood relationships of the people.
Thus European life from the 4th century A.D. onwards is the scene of a continuous spiritual struggle. The Archai contend with the backward Exousiai, the Spirits of Form who had remained behind, for the possession that had once been rightfully allotted to them in the course of world-history.
Everything that happened in the Middle Ages in a West-to-East direction and also in an East-to-West direction, all the surging migrations of the peoples, all the mutual antagonisms and hostilities from the Hunnish wars to the Turkish wars, from the tribal migrations to the Crusades, where everything always takes either a West-to-East or an East-to-West direction — all this is the physical, the historical reflection of a spiritual struggle taking place behind the scenes of world-history. Historical happenings on Earth can be understood in their reality only when we see them as reflections of what is being enacted in the super-sensible, spiritual world between the Beings of the Higher Hierarchies.
Thinking of one aspect of this fact, we can speak, to begin with, of two currents or streams.
- One which I shall mark yellow in the diagram, brings about the manifold movements again from West to East;
- the other stream presses forward and again back, so that these two streams constantly interpenetrate.
A reflection of what was taking place in the spiritual world is to be seen in the struggles arising from migrations of the peoples, in the struggles whereby ancient culture was partially destroyed but in which that culture was permeated now by human individuality.
We can devote ourselves to the following study, by asking:
What would have resulted from civilization if the different peoples had not begun their migrations, surging over into Europe from Asia and frequently settling in Europe, and if in these wanderings the factor of individual personality had not asserted itself — many a time with violence?
We see how within these migrations, whole tribes were permeated by a common spirit. But if we follow history we find that everywhere within these separate, yet homogeneous tribes inspired by one common spirit — Ostrogoths, Western Goths, Lombards, Heruli, Franks, Marcomanni, and so on — single personalities were stirred by the impulses of individuality. Everywhere we see happenings which on the one side represent the continuing stream of the impulses of the old, no longer really lawful Spirits of Form, and on the other, the now lawfully established Spirits of Personality, the Archai.
If history were related accurately, with more attention given to the influence of spiritual forces in what is for the most part described merely as tribal warfare, then it would be clear how these two forms of thought-impulses in humanity actually dominated life in the days of the folk migrations.
1893 - Beinsa Douno - as Peter Dunov
Ph. D thesis at Boston University: "Migration of Teutonic Tribes and Their Conversion to Christianity"
on the migration and Christianization of the Germanic tribes, see also wikipedia page
Note  - On the Atlantean migrations
Feedback from a reader:
- Schema FMC00.205B: North-Africa and West-Asia were part of the Caucasian-Jupiter stream (GA054, GA107, GA121), not of the mercury-venus stream.
- on those who stayed behind:
- "a part stayed behind" 1905-11-09-GA054 and "that particular part of the population that stayed in Europe" 1909-05-03-GA107
- "left behind them certain communities of people all over the Continent of Europe" 1908-08-10-GA105,"from those who were most backward when migration took place has sprung the European civilizations" 1908-08-11-GA105, "some remained at a particular stage of evolution" 1908-08-13-GA105
Note  - Preparation of the central European culture (II)
see also: Folk souls#Note .5B1.5D - Preparation of the central European culture .28I.29
In context of:
- Human races
- Folk souls
- Planets hosting beings at various stages of evolution
- Atlantean epoch
- Current Postatlantean epoch
References and further reading
- Sigismund von Gleich:
- Der Mensch der Eiszeit und Atlantis (mit besonderer Berücksichtigung der Urgeschichte der Mongolen, Abessinier und Basken) (1936, 1990)