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Chapter V. Knowledge of the Higher Worlds

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a certain definite effect. A healthy-minded person will take care that that which fills him with this feeling does not express itself outwardly or manifest itself in deeds. Thus the sense of shame is a force urging man to conceal something within himself, not allowing it to be outwardly apparent. If we consider this well, we shall find it possible to understand why occult science should ascribe more far-reaching effects to another inner experience of the soul, very closely allied to this feeling of shame. Occult science finds that within the hidden depths of the soul a kind of secret feeling of shame exists, of which man in his life of the physical senses is unaware. Yet this secret feeling acts much in the same way as the conscious feeling of shame of ordinary life to which we have alluded; it prevents man's inmost being from confronting him in a recognizable image, or double. Were this feeling not present, man would see himself as he is in very truth; not only would he experience his thoughts, ideas, feelings and decisions inwardly, but he would perceive these as he now perceives stones, animals and plants. This feeling, therefore, is that which veils man from himself, and at the same time hides from him the entire spiritual world. For owing to this veiling of man's inner self, he becomes unable to perceive those things by means of which he is to develop organs for penetrating into the psycho-spiritual world; he becomes unable to so transform his own being as to render it capable of obtaining spiritual organs of perception. If man aims however to form these organs of perception through correct training, that which he himself really is appears before him as the first impression. He perceives his double. This self-recognition is inseparable from perception of the rest of the psycho-spiritual world. In the everyday life of the physical world the feeling of shame here described acts in such a manner as to be perpetually closing the door which leads into the psycho-spiritual world. If man would take but a single step in order to penetrate into that world, this instantly appearing but unconscious feeling

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