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A New World Picture

The Road to Humaneness and Neighbourly Love

The direct speech of life

Why do I experience adversity and suffering? What do the things that happen to me during my life mean? And what should I learn from them?

With his spiritual science Martinus provides us with an analytical tool so that we ourselves can find the answers through investigating our daily experiences. That is, through life’s direct speech to us.

The explanation lies in a more profound understanding of what are causes and what are effects in our lives. Spiritual science provides the old saying "what you sow, you will reap" with a logically substantiated explanation adapted to the consciousness of the modern human being of today. The statement should be understood absolutely literally because the ultimate and most profound cause of everything we meet in life lies within ourselves.

If we feel that we have been treated badly and unfairly by others, we ourselves have subjected others to something similar, either in this life or in a previous one. If we contract an illness it is because we have previously, in all ignorance, subjected our body to harmful physical or mental influences. And if we have a strong feeling of sympathy for other sufferers, it is an ability we have developed because we ourselves have previously experienced corresponding sufferings.

Life is thus a continuous learning process in which the law of karma or the law of fate functions as the most pedagogical tool imaginable. Our own actions and our own mentality are constantly held up like a mirror in front of us. We realise that nothing actually ever happens by chance, and nothing is ever unjust - even if it seems to be.

A being whose courage has been won through loving all living things cannot be fettered no matter how much one would like to enslave him.
(The Courage to Face up to Life 2, Kosmos no. 4, 1969)

The mental change of course

Through this direct speech of life we gradually realise how we have to develop in order to have a happier and more satisfying life. This will come about by us changing our actions and way of thinking in a humane direction. Martinus calls this the “mental change of course”. He does this because the focus of our lives shifts from self-centredness and self-pity to care for others, from being "for oneself" to being "for one’s neighbour", from feeling like a victim of the actions of others to taking personal responsibility for one’s own humane development.

In time this mental change of course will create nothing less than a new humane, peaceful world culture, predicts Martinus. Even though we already find elements of this new culture in some people, we have to understand that it will take a long time - perhaps thousands of years - before it will have a profound influence on the world. This is due to the fact that it arises through an organic process of development and maturation in every individual.

Such a process takes its own natural course through the gradual garnering of experience and the building up of new, humane talents. For this reason it cannot be accelerated by artificial methods. According to Martinus we will each have many physical incarnations before we become what he calls “real human beings”, that is to say, human beings with an all-encompassing faculty for neighbourly love and a perfect, logical and intellectual faculty of thinking.
Insight leads to happiness and zest for living.

Even though this development takes a really long time - both for ourselves and for others - spiritual science, with its insight into the laws of life, gives us access to a powerful source of happiness and zest for living. We gain an overview that shows us that we can have complete confidence in the process of evolution.

Life proves to be a long journey during which we can enjoy the experiences on the way, both the pleasant ones and - on reflection - the unpleasant ones. This is because we realise that all experiences are necessary in order to lead us forward towards greater humaneness.

Spiritual science provides insight into the course of the journey up till now, during which we have had innumerable incarnations in the animal kingdom. And it shows us that we have taken part in evolution as unconscious actors on the great stage of life. At the present moment we are in a phase where we are "sphinx beings" of a sort. We are neither animals nor real human beings, but have both animal, egoistic sides and a dawning humane, neighbourly loving consciousness. The continuation of the journey will be enormously exciting because we will become better and better at making conscious choices on the stage of life. We will gradually acquire sufficient knowledge and experience to direct our lives in such a way as to promote

The kind of thought that undermines courage the most is martyrdom. Martyrdom is one of Man’s worst enemies because it is a life-lie. No martyrdom actually exists. No one can actually suffer injustice, and no one can do injustice.
(The Courage to Face up to Life 2, Kosmos no. 4, 1969)

Individual training

Martinus’ suggestions as to how we can work on our personal development sound very simple. He shows that through life’s direct speech to us we are each assigned areas requiring individual practice. Every time we meet adversity, stress, illness and other kinds of suffering, it is a signal telling us that there is something about our way of acting and being that we have to learn to do in a different way. This demands that we listen and that we use our willpower to make the necessary changes.

In turn we will experience that the reward will be greater and greater the more we are able to be caring, forgiving and loving towards other living beings. This holds true in relation to our own organism, where a healthy way of living and happy, positive thoughts are of far greater significance than we usually imagine.

We also have an excellent guide in our conscience, which, in Martinus’ words, constitutes a "shining mental sphere" in our consciousness. Conscience, as a rule, gives us a clear signal when we fail to live up to our own humane ideals.

In an answer to a question in Kosmos no. 3, 1933 (the Danish edition) Martinus gives us concrete instructions about things we would all benefit from practising in order to develop our own mentality by using our willpower:

  • Remove the concept of “enemies” from your consciousness.
  • Never retort against anger, slander or other forms of unpleasantness directed towards you.
  • Never say anything evil about anyone or anything.
  • Be absolutely truthful and honest in all the situations of life.
  • Be absolutely uninfluenced by flattery, praise and criticism.
  • Never take part in killing, wounding or mutilating.
  • Never let your thought deviate from focusing on how you best can serve your fellow beings. In so doing you will be practising the very highest form of yoga or the most perfect training of the part of your development that is within the scope of your will and that, together with the other part of the refining of your nature by life itself, will ultimately lead you forward to becoming a moral genius and transform you into a perfect being, a God-like human being.  (Kosmos no. 3, 1933)