Wednesday 15 February 2023

"The head changes its function" - what happens with heart-thinking (Final Participation)

That's what Rudolf Steiner meant when he said "Hearts must begin to have thoughts". 

The head changes its function. It becomes the place where the thoughts the heart has, are reflected back to us, where we can perceive them...

Instead of the head being the place where thoughts originate at the behest of sense-perception. 

Slightly edited from a passage in an unpublished novel called The Intraterrestrials, by Stanley Messenger, 1995-6. 

This may be helpful in understanding the Steiner-derived concept of heart-thinking, and what it entails. 

The existing situation (in this era of the Consciousness Soul) is that the conscious thoughts in our head (our brain) derive from sense perceptions, including memories that derive from sense perceptions. That is, our head-thinking originates from the six senses of sights, hearing, touch, taste, smell, and proprioception (perception of inner viscera). 

Heart-thinking is not like this: it is non-perceptual - it is direct-knowing. Therefore, we 'Just Know' heart thinking - although it can be translated into words, pictures or other perceptions. 

The idea is that in Owen Barfield's idea of Final Participation; the function of head-thinking switches from a basis in awareness of our perceptions, to awareness of our heart-thinking. 

And, primarily, this head-thinking awareness is therefore direct - wordless, pictureless, touchless - a case of Just Knowing what is in our heart-thinking.  

In other words: In Primary Thinking we become aware of what we Just Know. 

Note: if any of the above terminology is unfamiliar or unclear, I suggest doing a word search on this blog, using the search box in the upper left corner of the page. 


Francis Berger said...

I am not as knowledgeable about Steiner and Barfield as you are, but the nature and process of what you have outlined here resonates with me on an intuitive level. I've begun to conceptualize it as "silent knowing".

Inquisitor Benedictus said...

The greatest classic of Eastern Orthodox spirituality, the Philokalia, has this theme as its central message, viz. the "coming down" of thoughts from the head into the heart.

Bruce Charlton said...

@IQ - I admire the Philokalia and its influence, but it is saying something quite different from what I am trying to communicate here.

@Frank - Glad to hear it. I feel the same. But I still find it hard to do - partly because it cannot be done by any technique, method, training or habit. It only happens when the motivation is also right - and That is much harder to manage.