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An Outline of Occult Science

the physical body. And if we go on to observe the harmonious co-operation of the part with the whole, we shall find that it is certainly true that this principle of man's being is perfect and it does not affect the question that in certain parts something apparently useless appears, or that disturbances of structure or functions may take place. It will even be found that such disturbances are in a way only the necessary shadows of the wisdom-filled light which is poured out over the whole physical organism. Now compare with this the astral body as the medium or vehicle of pleasure and pain, desires and passions. What uncertainty rules in it with regard to pleasure and pain; how the desires and passions, of which it is the scene, run counter to the higher goal of man; how senseless they often are. The astral body is only now on its way to attain the harmony and inner poise already possessed by the physical body. Similarly it might be shown that the etheric body is certainly more perfect in its own way than the astral but less perfect than the physical body. And it will equally result from a corresponding study of the ego that this, the real kernel of man's being, is now only at the beginning of its evolution. For how much has already been accomplished of its mission, that of transforming the other principles of man's being in order that they may become a revelation of the ego's own nature? The result of an outer examination of this kind is intensified for the occult student by something else. It might be pointed out that the physical body is attacked by diseases. Now occult science is in a position to show that a large proportion of all diseases owe their origin to the fact that the perverse actions and mistakes of the astral body are transmitted to the etheric body, and indirectly through the etheric, destroy the perfect harmony of the physical body. The deeper connection, which can here be only hinted at, and the true cause of many of the conditions of disease, elude that kind of scientific observation which confines itself solely to the

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