Chapter V. Knowledge of the Higher Worlds
pencils invented, etc.?” will surely be adapting his perceptions to realities more than he who meditates on the descent of man, or asks himself what life is. Simple thought exercises prepare us better for an adequate concept of the world in its Saturn, Sun, and Moon stages of development than those based on learned and complicated ideas. For the important thing is not at all just to think, but to think in conformity with facts by means of an inner force. Once one has been trained to accuracy by means of an obvious, physical sense process, the desire to think in conformity with facts will have become habitual, even if thought does not feel itself under the control of the physical sense-world and its laws; we then lose the tendency to let our thoughts drift about aimlessly. And as in the world of thought, so in the realm of the will, the soul must become the ruler. In the physical sense-world it is life that rules. It urges upon man this or that as a necessity, and the will feels itself constrained to satisfy these same wants. In following higher training, man must accustom himself to obey his own commands strictly, and those who acquire this habit will feel less and less inclined to desire what is of no moment. All that is unsatisfying and unstable in the life of the will comes from the desire for things of the possession of which we have formed no distinct concept. Discontent such as this may, when the higher ego is desirous of emerging from the soul, throw that person's whole inner life into disorder; and it is a good exercise to give oneself for the space of several months some command to be carried out at a specified time of day: “To-day, at this or that particular hour, you will do this or that thing.” Thus we gradually become able to command the time at which a thing is to be done and the manner in which it is to be performed, so as to admit of its being accomplished with utmost exactitude. Thus we lift ourselves above the bad habit of saying, “I should like this,” and “I want the other,” while exercising no thought of the possibility of its accomplishment.