Page 244



An Outline of Occult Science

acquires a firmness, reliance, and balance, which will not forsake it even after the birth of the second ego; and on the other hand, this latter ego is provided with strength and inner fortitude for its journey. What is required is that man's thinking power shall in all domains conform to facts. In the physical world of the senses, life is the great teacher of the human ego with regard to reality. Were the soul to allow its thoughts to roam aimlessly hither and thither, it would soon be corrected by life, unless it were willing to enter into combat with it; the soul must conform its thoughts to the facts of life. Now, when man leads his thoughts away from the world of the physical senses, he misses the corrective influence of this latter. If his thought is not able to be its own mentor, it will be as unsteady as a will-o'-the-wisp. Consequently, the student's thought must be exercised in such a way that its course and object are self-determined. Inner firmness and a capacity to concentrate strictly on one object: this is what such thinking must of itself engender. And for this reason the thought exercises should not be concerned with complicated objects or those foreign to life, but should, on the contrary, deal with those that are simple and familiar. Any one who succeeds in fixing his mind, over a period of several months and for a space of at least five minutes a day, on such ordinary objects as a pin or a lead pencil, excluding for the time being all other thoughts not concerned with the object under contemplation, will have accomplished much in the right direction. (A new article may be chosen each day, or the same one adhered to for the space of several days.) Even those who feel themselves to be “thinkers” need not despise this method of preparing themselves for occult training, because by fixing the attention for a time upon a really familiar object one may be sure that he will be thinking in accordance with facts, and one who asks himself the questions: “What are the constituent parts of a pencil?” “How are these materials prepared?” “How are they afterwards put together?” “When were