The Pure in Heart
By Kim Graae Munch.

If you try to picture the whole human race on the earth and all the bonds of friendship and love that have been woven, you must picture these relationships as a great network or web, which is, moreover, actually present in Devachan [soul world]. … It is from there that the impulse is brought to make brotherliness a reality here on the earth. [The soul is beauty, truth and caring love.] ~Rudolf Steiner, see later: Bonds of Love Between Souls.

I seem to have loved you in numberless forms, numberless times...
In life after life, in age after age, forever.
My spellbound heart has made and remade the necklace of songs,
That you take as a gift, wear round your neck in your many forms,
In life after life, in age after age, forever.
~Rabindranath Tagore, see later: ...loved you in numberless forms, numberless times....

History of the Old Souls

The old souls have followed the Logos from the start of earth, was selected and educated in old Lemuria to walk in the steps of the Logos. They have worked as group souls for the rest of humanity, have lead the tribes until Golgotha. Their souls worked from outside and into man until Golgotha, but at Golgotha the souls died in the outer world to resurrect with Christ into the inner of man. This was especially a shock for the old souls, where they had led the body from above they were now within the body, and it can be likened with a rider trying to tame a horse, and death meant that they had been thrown of.

In the start, the bodies were very primitive and only a select group of people was ready to incarnate in these bodies. These pioneers had to walk the path first to make sure that it was possible for every soul incarnating to walk the path. As time went the bodies became more and more developed and more people could incarnate. The oldest souls acted as teachers for the younger souls, and these again became teachers for souls younger than them, and so forth.

Up through our life, we meet the people we have shared karma with so we can handle our karma, to dissolve it. The more lives we have lived the earlier we have to start our repetition, and the more compressed the lives are. And the problems comes as beads on a string.

There is, therefore, the rule, that the earlier in your life you gain knowledge about the spiritual, the older you are as a soul. I am born into a Rosicrucian family, I have never believed in death, and neither in an outer God. That I was an old soul was, of course, kind of an abstract idea for me, but later I was told that I had been incarnating from the very start. Another experience was when I found out who was incarnated as Peter Deunov/Beinsa Douno, a warm feeling filled me, and I heard the words that we were old friends, and I knew he was with us from the start.

Those who incarnate on Earth comes from four different development waves, we know them through the four human group souls, man, bull, lion, an eagle, where the eagle is the oldest beings, and man the youngest. Man developed from the animals or animal-like beings, where the others are stragglers from earlier development waves.

God is not a magician, he creates through his own example, and we are not developed on an assembly line, we are each an individuality with each our own history, so we can't be alike, and God wants us to be different as it increases the shared wisdom of humanity.

Old Souls in their Current Incarnation

When the old souls were working for the Logos their etheric or astral body contained the powers of the Logoi, but when they were developing themselves they were without these special powers. Today they are all incarnated with their natural powers, to go through the initiation on their own. Many of them have the little pride coming from being the teachers of the Logos, so they have gone through an incarnation where they were the lowest of all, been the odd one out, to learn humility to be able to love themselves without a trace of egoism. As they are strong souls they meet their karma as beads on a string where younger souls handle much less karma, as this is hard enough for them.

The old souls live most of their lives without knowing other old souls, actually feeling quite alone and different, even as a aria, often as a servant and underpaid teacher. They long for company, but are usually disappointed as few understand their thoughts, so they actually feel good alone creating art or making their work to art.

They have karmic relation to the people around them, they are part of their soul group, and have followed them a long time, although some have left and others have come to their group up through time. They have love for them, but they long for a love that are as strong as their own. If the old souls met each other when they were young, they wouldn’t feel alone, they wouldn’t feel different as they had each other to mirror in. The biggest danger would be if they forgot the responsibility toward their soul group with the younger souls and only played with each other, what would be much more fun, they could enjoy each other’s creative ideas, they would be understood.

The old souls learns meekness through feeling different, and lives as a servant, as only those who understand others can be a true servant, what the young souls can’t. The often prefer to do things themselves, easier to do it themselves than instruct others and the result is better. They are born with love in their soul, they care. But they have to learn to give help to self help, to learn that they can’t handle others problems, others karma, they can’t save the world, bear the burden of the world on their shoulders alone. Their low self esteem makes them ready to give their life for others, makes them sacrifice their own happiness for others. Happiness are often a dream for them, not necessarily something they have experienced. But when they sacrifice their life for others they actually make the young soul to an ungrateful junkie of their service, a kind of vampire. They should understand it should be a joy to help others, if it isn't a joy, the relationship is fundamentally wrong.

The largest problem for the old soul is to understand that they are lovable, because they are! Their soul is beauty, truth and loving care, it’s the stuff the soul consists of. It’s actually a tragedy as most old souls are loved by their surroundings, but they don’t see it, they have been alienated through so many years. They can’t believe it, even when seeing it, and they often obstruct others when they try to show affection or love, not to be disappointed. They have many problems getting anima and animus to love each other, make thought, feelings and inspiration to understand each other, loving their own physical manifestation in the world, filling their heart with joy, love and courage.

Kim Graae Munch

The Teachers of Humanity, the Old Souls - How it started

The old souls are the people who were selected and educated in the start of the earth development to follow the Logos through the creation.

From Cosmic Memory, The Lemurian Race.

The fourth, the Atlantean root race, was preceded by the so-called Lemurian. During its development, events of the very greatest importance occurred with respect to the earth and to men.

The Lemurians

Here, however, something will first be said of the character of this root race after these events, and only then will the latter be discussed. By and large, memory was not yet developed among this race. While men could have ideas of things and events, these ideas did not remain in the memory.

Therefore they did not yet have a language in the true sense. Rather what they could utter were natural sounds which expressed their sensations, pleasure, joy, pain and so forth, but which did not designate external objects.

The Lemurians did not have dwellings in our sense, except in their latest times. They lived where nature gave them the opportunity to do so. The caves which they used were only altered and extended insofar as necessary.

Later they built such caves themselves and at that time they developed great skill for such constructions.

One must not imagine, however, that they did not also execute more artful constructions. But these did not serve as dwellings. In the earliest times they originated in the desire to give to the things of nature a man-made form. Hills were remodeled in such a way that the form afforded man joy and pleasure.

Stones were put together for the same purpose, or in order to be used for certain activities. The places where the children were hardened were surrounded with walls of this kind.

Toward the end of this period, the buildings which served for the cultivation of “divine wisdom and divine art” became more and more imposing and ornate.

Lemuria - Kamari Kandam

The Initiates and their Teachings

These institutions differed in every respect from what temples were later, for they were educational and scientific institutions at the same time. He who was found fit was here initiated into the science of the universal laws and into the handling of them.

If the Lemurian was a born magician, this talent was here developed into art and insight.

Only those could be admitted who, through all kinds of discipline, had acquired the ability to overcome themselves to the greatest extent.

For all others what went on in these institutions was the deepest secret. Here one learned to know and to control the forces of nature through direct contemplation of them.

But the learning was such that in man the forces of nature changed into forces of the will.

He himself could thereby execute what nature accomplishes. What later mankind accomplished by reflection, by calculation, at that time had the character of an instinctive activity. But here one must not use the word “instinct” in the same sense in which one is accustomed to apply it to the animal world.

For the activities of Lemurian humanity towered high above everything the animal world can produce through instinct. They even stood far above what mankind has since acquired in the way of arts and sciences through memory, reason and imagination.

If one were to use an expression for these institutions which would facilitate an understanding of them, one could call them “colleges of will power and of the clairvoyant power of the imagination.”

From them emerged the men who, in every respect, became rulers of the others.

Today it is difficult to give in words a true conception of all these conditions. For everything on earth has changed since that time. Nature itself and all human life were different, therefore human labor and the relationship of man to man differed greatly from what is customary today.

The air was much thicker even than in later Atlantean times, the water much thinner. And what forms the firm crust of our earth today was not yet as hard as it later became.

The world of plants and animals had developed only as far as the amphibians, the birds, and the lower mammals, and as far as vegetable growths which resemble our palms and similar trees.

However, all forms were different from what they are today. What now exists only all in forms was then developed to gigantic sizes. At that time our small ferns were trees and formed mighty forests.

The modern higher mammals did not exist. On the other hand a great part of humanity was on such a low stage of development that one cannot but designate it as animal.

What has been described here was true only of a small part of mankind, The rest lived their life in animalism. In their external appearance and in their way of life these animal men were quite different from the small group. They were not especially different from the lower mammals, which resembled them in form in certain respects.

Varying development speed between old and young souls

From Rudolf Steiner, lecture 15 february 1909. Disease Karma and Healing.

If we go back into the past to the remote Lemurian time, we find the most varied stages of development among the human beings then incarnated. All the souls embodied at that time have since repeatedly experienced reincarnations during the succeeding Atlantean and post-Atlantean periods.

These souls have developed with varying rapidity. Some have made relatively slow progress through their incarnations and still have long distances to travel in the future.

But there are also souls who have developed rapidly, who, one might say, have utilized their incarnations to better advantage and are therefore at a stage of soul-spiritual development that will be attained by normal men only in the far distant future.

Nevertheless, we may say that however advanced these individual souls may be, however far they may tower above normal men, they have still followed the same path in earthly evolution as the rest of humanity but have merely advanced more rapidly.

The old souls are the Michael Stream

From The Individuality of Elias, John, Raphael, Novalis Steiners last address

That you yourselves, my dear friends, in so far as you truly and honestly incline to the Anthroposophical Movement, belong to these souls — this I have endeavoured to make clear to you in the lectures of the last weeks and especially also in the lectures where I spoke to you directly of the karma of the Anthroposophical Society. We can however carry these considerations a little further, and that is what I want to do today.

Let us now bring before our souls beings who are intimately connected, and will always be intimately connected, with the Michael stream, in the sense in which we have described it here.

This will be the fundamental characteristic of the Manus of the Sixth Root Race. Such Beings have to undergo all kinds of Initiation, to be initiated again and again.

Hence the Fifth Root Race from its outset has always had Initiates, men who were so initiated as to enable them to walk their own freely willed path. This was not the case during the Lemurian period, nor even in Atlantis.

Both in Lemuria and Atlantis, those who helped mankind forward, those who ruled and guided mankind, those who were political leaders and leaders of great religious communities, were under the influence of Higher Beings. They were directly dependent upon Higher Beings, Beings who had gone through their own development on other planets.

It is not until the Fifth Root Race that mankind is left free. Then we have Initiates who have a connection with Higher Beings, but to whom such comprehensive guidance is not given. More and more freedom is allowed to the Initiates of the Fifth Root Race in matters of detail. Guidance is given along general lines, not only to the Initiates but to those who are stimulated by them. Impulses are given to them but yet in such a way that it is out of their own spirituality that they have to carry things out ...

Development of thought power for the old souls in Atlantis

From Atlantis and Lemuria by Rudolf Steiner

The chief leaders of the fifth Atlantean sub-race gradually prepared their charges so that-in later days, and after the mode of life then obtaining in Atlantean times had fallen into disuse they might be ready to start afresh and regulate their lives entirely in accordance with thought power.

We have now to visualize that about the close of the Atlantean period there were various groups of man-like beings on earth : there were in the first place the ' Messengers of the Gods.' whose spiritual development far excelled that of the great mass of humanity ; and these taught spiritual wisdom and performed god-like acts. Secondly. there was the great mass of humanity itself, at that time destined to gradual extinction, where thought-power was as yet but dull, although these people possessed certain natural abilities which are lost to man in the present day. And, thirdly, there was a little group, whose thought-power was being developed.

The members of this little group, as they increased in intelligence, forfeited those natural gifts ; but on the other hand, they became capable of thoughtfully apprehending the principles made known to them by the 'Messengers of the Gods'; and having enjoyed the assistance given them by these ' Messengers ' were now fit to undertake their own guidance.

It was from among the most capable members of this third group that the Manu (this being the name by which these principal leaders are known in theosophical literature), selected the fittest in order to form the new race, and those fittest were chosen from among the fifth sub-race.

As far as the sixth and seventh sub-race were concerned thought power had, in their case, wandered to a certain extent into bypaths-so to speak and no longer admitted of being developed to the best advantage. But what was now imperatively needed was that the best qualities characterizing the best type should be utilized to the fullest, and this was done when the leader of those fittest took this little group to a sequestered spot-the place was in Central Asia-and there separated them from all intercourse with those who were less advanced, or who had gone astray.

Example of a young soul by Steiner

Luigi Morelli: Karl Julius Schröer and Rudolf Steiner: Anthroposophy and the Teachings of Karma and Reincarnation.

The year 1888 was clearly a turning point in Steiner’s life in relation to his faculties of karmic perception. Steiner had been touched by the poems of Fercher von Steinwand, and had an opportunity to meet the reclusive poet. In him he recognized someone whose strong individuality could not be explained by his environment. Steiner felt that, although advanced in age, Steinwand was the youngest in spirit of all the people around him. “His facial expression and every gesture revealed to me a soul being who could only have been molded at the time of Greek paganism and its influence on the development of Christianity at the beginning of the Christian era,” is Steiner’s comment in his autobiography.(1)

1) Rudolf Steiner, Autobiography, Chapter 20. Friedrich Zauner has continued the poet’s characterization and come to the conclusion, agreed upon by T. H. Meyer, that he was the reincarnation of Dionysius the Areopagite. This had played an important part in Aquinas’ education. See Rudolf Steiner’s Core Mission: the Birth and Development of Spiritual-Scientific Karma Research, T. H. Meyer, 2009 (translated 2010) (Forest Row, UK: Temple Lodge, 2010) 44.

Old Souls Before and After Golgotha

Golgotha, the Grail, Christian Rosencreutz

The old souls acts as group souls for each their group of younger souls before Golgotha. The souls hovered above the bodies before Golgotha as the bodies wasn't ready to contain the souls. At Golgotha the souls entered the bodies and it was especially a problem for the old souls as it limited them significantly, they couldn't teach their students in their soul group as they could before.

Christ was the group soul of humanity, he have hovered above the bodies of humanity from the start, lead them from animal to a body the soul could incarnate in. He was both an individual god, but contained also all the souls that have lead each body from outside through long times. Humanity couldn't recognize him when he was incarnated, only his nearest disciples and a number of other highly developed understood who he was. He knew humanity better than they knew themselves. He knew precisely who they were, so he didn't take it personal, he was sad on their behalf. They were children.

When Christ died the outer gods died, they no longer were outside man. When Christ resurrected the gods resurrected inside man, the soul incarnated inside the body, they didn't hover above man like before. This was a shock both for the body and the soul, the soul can be likened with a rider trying to tame a wild horse, the ego.

Old heroes like Hector and great philosophers like Empedocles were group-soul's for large groups of younger souls. For them it was a great shock to incarnate into a body after Golgotha. They were in the same situation as Christ, they were still the teacher of the group, but many in the group didn't recognize them or wouldn't accept them as their wise older brothers, or expected more of them than they could give. These old souls, teachers, had to find out how to work as teachers again, and it was hard.

I think many old souls who have been in the hands of narcissists have been in the hands of very young persons from their group, that they had to learn to teach, instead of sacrificing themselves for these young souls. They loved really these young souls, but they couldn't find out how to help them, they often sacrificed their own lives for them instead of teaching them through their own example. See also Esoteric Earth History.

From The Gospel of St. Mark, Lecture 1.

Hector and AchillesConsider one of his [Homer] characters, Hector. If you have any time available, you ought to study the figure of Hector in the Iliad — how plastically he is described so that he stands as a complete personality before us; how we see his affection for his paternal city, Troy, his wife Andromache, his relationship to Achilles, and to his armies; and how he commanded them. Try to call up this man before your minds, this man who possessed all the tenderness of a husband, and who clung in the ancient way to his home city of Troy, and who suffered such disillusions as only really great men can. Remember his relation with Achilles. Hector, as presented by Homer, is a towering figure from very ancient times, a man of great all-embracing humanity, for of course what Homer is describing belongs to a period well before his own, in the darkness of the past. Hector stands out above all the others, all those figures who seem mythical enough in the eyes of modern men.

Now take this one figure. ... Hector was a living person who strode through Troy, and Achilles and the other figures were equally real. They still stand before us as personages of real earthly life. We look back to them as people of a different kind from ourselves, who are difficult to understand but whom the poet is able to bring before our souls in every detail. Now let us place before our souls a figure such as Hector, one of the chief Trojan commanders, who is defeated by Achilles. In such a personage we have something that belongs to the old pre-Christian age, something by which we can measure what men were before the time when Christ lived on earth.

Hamlet... The real figure underlying Hamlet, as presented by Shakespeare, is Hector. The same soul that lived in Hamlet lived in Hector. It is just by such a characteristic example as this, and the striking way the two different souls manifest themselves, that we can interpret what happened in the intervening time.

A personality such as that of Hector stands before us in the pre-Christian age. Then comes the intervention of the Mystery of Golgotha in human evolution, and the spark it kindled in Hector's soul causes a figure, a prototype of Hamlet, to arise, of whom Goethe said, “This is a soul that is unable to deal with any situation and is not equal to its position, who is assigned tasks but is unable to fulfill them.”

... Why does Shakespeare choose particular qualities in Hamlet and sharply emphasize them, qualities that perhaps Hamlet's own contemporaries would not have noticed? Because he observes them against the background of the era. He feels how different a soul has become in its transition from the old life to the new. Hamlet, the doubter, the skeptic, who has lost the ability to cope with the situations with which he meets in life, the procrastinator and waverer, this is what Hector, once so sure of himself, has become.

... I have mentioned two characteristic figures, in both of whom we can perceive that when great men of earlier times reappear in a modern post-Christian age, they are shaken to the very depths of their souls and can only with difficulty adjust themselves to life. Everything that was within them in the past is still within them.

For example, when we allow Hamlet to work upon us, we feel that the whole force of Hector is in him. But we feel that this force cannot come forth in the post-Christian era, that it then meets with obstacles, that something now works upon the soul that is the beginning of something new, whereas in the figures of antiquity something was coming to an end. So do these figures stand plastically delineated before us; both Hector and Empedocles represent a conclusion.

EmpedoclesBut what is working on further in mankind must find new paths into new incarnations. This is revealed with Hector in Hamlet and also with Empedocles in Faust, who had within him all the abysmal urges toward the depths of nature. Because he had within him the whole nature of Empedocles, he could say, “I will lay aside the Bible for a time and study nature and medicine. I will no longer be a theologian.” He felt the need to have dealings with demonic beings who made him roam through the world leaving him marveling but uncomprehending. Here the Empedocles element had an after-effect but was not able to adjust itself to what a man must be after the new age had begun.

... If we inquire what happened between the two incarnations of such individualities, the answer always is the Mystery of Golgotha, which was announced by the Baptist when he said, “The time is fulfilled, the kingdoms of the spirit, or the kingdoms of heaven, are passing over into the kingdom of man.” Yes, the kingdoms of heaven did indeed powerfully seize the human kingdom, but those who take this in an external sense are unable to understand it.

They seized it so powerfully that the great men of antiquity, who had been in themselves so solid and compact, had to make a new beginning in human evolution on earth. This new beginning showed itself precisely with them, and lasted until the end of the old epoch, with the Mystery of Golgotha. At that time something that had been fulfilled ebbed away, something which had presented men in such a way that they appeared as rounded personalities in themselves.

Then came something that made it necessary for these souls to make a new beginning. Everything had to be transformed and altered so that great souls appeared small. They had to be transformed into the stage of childhood, for something quite new was beginning. We must inscribe this in our souls if we wish to understand what is meant at the beginning of the Gospel of St. Mark by the words “a beginning.” Yes, truly a beginning, a beginning that shakes the inmost soul to its foundations and brings a totally new impulse into human evolution, a “beginning of the Gospel.”

FaustWhat then is the Gospel? It is something that comes down to us from the kingdoms we have often described, where dwell the higher hierarchical beings, among whom are the angels and archangels. It descends through the world that rises above the human world. So do we gain an inkling of the deeper meaning of the word Gospel. It is an impulse that descends through the realms of the archangels and angels; it comes down from these kingdoms and enters into mankind. None of the abstract translations really covers the matter adequately.

In reality the word Gospel should indicate that at a certain time something begins to flow in upon the earth which formerly flowed only where there dwell the angels and archangels. Something descended to earth that shook the souls of men and shook the strongest souls most. It is here noted that this was the beginning, and the beginning has a continuation. The beginning was made at that time, and we shall see that fundamentally the whole development of humanity since then is a continuation of that beginning when the impulse began to flow down from the kingdom of the angeloi, or what we call the “ev-angel” or Gospel.

The "Initiates of the Grail" or "Servants of the Grail" is also the old souls, those who walk with Christ. The Holy Grail

The old souls By Peter Deunov - the Enemies of Darkness

There are hints about the New Humanity in the New Testament and specially in Revelation. The Evangelist John, two thousand years ago, saw the woman pregnant with this great idea, the New Humanity, and fixed the number of the chosen ones, the bearers of this idea at 144 000 persons. If you add these numbers 1+4+4 = 9, the number 9 signifies an evolution of men who have all the positive, noble qualities.

Some would say that these l44 000 persons are in heaven. No, they are now here, on earth; they are incarnated among the intelligent people. Some of them are writers; others, poets or men of science; and all of them push humanity forward on the path toward the new idea, toward the Divine.

These are the enemies of darkness, of the fetters that enchain humanity. And the world-wide unrest, this great change that is coming, is due to them. They will turn this world upside down.

Bonds of Love Between Souls

By Rudolf Steiner, June 7 1909 Budapest, Rosicrucian Esotericism

“Threads from soul to soul are woven here in the physical world as the result of the manifold circumstances of existence. Bonds of friendship, of love, and so on, are firmly knit, and every contact made between one human being and another has significance and reality not only for this physical world but also for the spiritual world. Indeed, it may be said that the more spiritual the relationships here have been, the more significant they are for the world of Devachan [the soul-world]. When the individual dies, everything that is physical in these relationships of love and friendship falls away from them and only what was of the nature of soul and spirit remains.

(…) If you try to picture the whole human race on the earth and all the bonds of friendship and love that have been woven, you must picture these relationships as a great network or web, which is, moreover, actually present in Devachan. When a clairvoyant gazes at the earth from the standpoint of Devachan, he perceives this web of spiritual relationships that a human being finds again when he passes into Devachan after death. He is involved in all the spiritual relationships he himself has woven.

(…) In Devachan, souls confront each other directly. The relationship of soul to soul is far more intimate and inward than it is in the physical world. Recognition of loved ones is not particularly difficult here, for each soul bears his inner, spiritual reality inscribed as it were upon his spiritual countenance. He himself proclaims his name, indeed, in a much truer form than is possible here, as the basic tone, which, as it is said in occultism, he represents in the spiritual world.

(…) Companionship in Devachan is, to say the least, as intimate as any life here on earth. Fellow feeling in Devachan is much more alert, much more intimate than it is on earth; one experiences another’s pain there as one’s own. On earth, greater or less personal prosperity is possible at the costs of others but in Devachan that is out of the question. There, the misfortune caused by someone to another human being in order to better himself would reverberate upon him; nobody could prosper at the expense of another.

Adjustment starts from Devachan. It is from there that the impulse is brought to make brotherliness a reality here on the earth. A law that is a matter of course in Devachan is a task that has to be fulfilled on earth.”

...loved you in numberless forms, numberless times...

By Rabindranath Tagore:

I seem to have loved you in numberless forms, numberless times...
In life after life, in age after age, forever.
My spellbound heart has made and remade the necklace of songs,
That you take as a gift, wear round your neck in your many forms,
In life after life, in age after age, forever.

Whenever I hear old chronicles of love, it's age old pain,
It's ancient tale of being apart or together.
As I stare on and on into the past, in the end you emerge,
Clad in the light of a pole-star, piercing the darkness of time.
You become an image of what is remembered forever.

You and I have floated here on the stream that brings from the fount.
At the heart of time, love of one for another.
We have played along side millions of lovers,
Shared in the same shy sweetness of meeting,
the distressful tears of farewell,
Old love but in shapes that renew and renew forever.

Today it is heaped at your feet, it has found its end in you
The love of all man's days both past and forever:
Universal joy, universal sorrow, universal life.
The memories of all loves merging with this one love of ours -
And the songs of every poet past and forever.

Krishna & Radha