Theosophy is a key work for gaining a solid footing in spiritual reality as described by Rudolf Steiner. It is organized into four parts. First, Steiner builds a comprehensive understanding of human nature: physical bodily nature; soul qualities; spirit being, or I-being; and the higher spiritual aspects. This leads us to Steiner's description of the human being as sevenfold:Material, physical body; Ether body, or body of life forces; Sentient soul body; Mind soul; Spirit-filled consciousness soul; Life spirit; Spirit body. In the next section, Steiner offers an extraordinary overview of the laws of reincarnation and the principles of karma, as we pass from one life to the next. This prepares us for the third section, in which he shows the various ways in which we live-during life on earth and after death and in the three worlds of body, soul, and spirit. Finally, we are given a succinct description of the path of knowledge, along which each person can begin to understand the marvelous and harmonious complexity of the psycho-spiritual worlds in their fullness.
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This title is the first half of what the author originally intended to be a one volume text in two parts. The second part is now published as An Outline of Esoteric Science while this first part remains with the original title, Theosophy, although the author broke away from the organized movement with this name. The book deals with the organic structure of the human being as a dual being with an inner and an outer life; as a threefold being with a body, a personal soul life and a spiritual nature that reincarnates; as a fourfold being with a membership in each one of the three visible natural kingdoms as well as in a kingdom of our own - which in turn connects us with higher kingdoms - as well as a sevenfold and a ninefold being. The etheric body, the astral body as well as other fundamental concepts of spiritual science are thoroughly examined and put in context. The chapter on reincarnation and karma is logically convincing albeit a bit abstract. Very concrete, however, is the chapter describing the human aura and its colors. The chapter describing the discipline of spiritual research is a gem and worth the struggle of a generally gnarly text. In fact, this struggle is part of the authors intentions of inviting the reader to a discipline that will lead to personal experience. A drawback is that it also can lead to mystification and followership amongst people that lack the discipline or the mental faculties to digest this kind of text. For serious students and practicioners of the spiritual sciences, however, this book, along with its companion volume Esoteric Science, is a time tested and performance proven corner stone. Recent books of similar scope are hard to find, but B. A. Brannons books are related in some ways.