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The Double

a new paradigm for understanding the human psyche

The Doppelganger
An image, called "The Doppelganger" is from a drawing that Rudolf Steiner did for the stained glass in his building.  more


Some readings for our adventure into understanding ........

The Double...the Doppleganger...

In our adventure we will look into ourselves and those around us and try to understand what is functioning inside our body and mind.

Because we our going to look inside ourselves with our own mind we are doing something really difficult. Just imagine trying to find a blue elephant in a blue room illuminated with blue light!

Moving around our blue room we would occasionally bump into some thing - a foot, a knee, a tail, a trunk. We could also talk to others about what we had touched but it would be extraordinary difficult to get an impression of the overall animal by this process...

So here are some readings. These are pieces written by others who have discovered aspects of the Doppleganger in themselves and in Society. Some have spoken about it, others have written about it. All the authors have discovered it in different ways and present their wisdom from within different value systems.

There are areas of overlap between the authors and their views. Each is presenting only part the part of the picture that they have seen.

It is our job in the lecture series to find ...

  1. A simple way of explaining the Doppleganger in words we can all agree upon.
  2. The best possible explanation of the Doppleganger - a theory that can be sent out into the world to find a home in people's minds.
  3. The best techniques to apply the wisdom we have gained about the Doppleganger to the counseling situation.
  4. A way to structure the material we have used, discussed and agreed upon into a book.

Here are the readings, and short notes about them.

Jung talks of Number 1 and Number 2 personalities. Of Shadow and Self. But unlike some of the esoteric authors in these readings he does not suggest that there are real, living, spiritual worlds in which we also belong. This makes Jung the esoterist for materialists.

Steiner presented most of his material as lectures. There are thousands of transcribed lectures and perhaps ten books and plays which Steiner has written.

Lectures are dynamic things. The "Spirit of Place" the audience and the mood of the day all affect the material. So it is not surprising that much of Steiner's transcribed (and translated from, German) material is turgid and confusing at best and contradictory at worst.

The "Geographic Medicine" lecture in the attached readings is - in my estimation - one of his best lectures. It covers the Doppleganger idea in a way he never again referred to in his numerous lectures on medicine, education, or anywhere else.

I find his geographical musings about the Doppleganger as immensely interesting because it fits ever so well with aboriginal ideas which suggest that our geographic Totems ARE our bodies.

The material that I have put into the reading assumes that the reader understands basic esoteric concepts about the spiritual worlds that are around and through us.

This material also assumes that the reader has some basic concepts of the spiritual worlds. Leadbeater writes well and his explanation of the Doppleganger is expressed in dynamic rather than historical concepts. It is as valid and accurate as any other description of the Doppleganger concept.

Leadbeater trouble coming to an accommodation with his Doppleganger throughout his life; the edges of his problem can be seen in this reading.

Using Steiner's occult terminology Ravencroft tells us about the Doppleganger's world ... the time, space and spiritual reality we - and our Dopplegangers - live inside.

It is a fascinating world that holds us enthraled inside out TV set, our political system and in fact the very essence of materialism.

The Nazis brought the Doppleganger's world into physical reality by knowingly working with the forces that come from this world.

Monkey, Journey to the West
Many of us have seen the TV series. Perhaps we will look at some extracts from DVD in our lecture series.
The mythological monkey in the book (which in its original form is in 3 volumes of 100 chapters) moves from boundless, uncontrollable human monkey energy to a level of self control by subjugating himself to Tippitaka, the Buddhist monk in the story.

The bandits in the reading are the Doppleganger's desires that we need to acknowledge and control. The story suggests that one cannot kill desires, they go with being human (well, monkey!)

Grimm's tale is an allegory. The beast with the goats feet (i.e. Rumpelstiltskin) can take over your life, your heritage and your future ... if you let it. But to know of its existence, to know its name, gives one the opportunity to control it.

That's the moral of the tale. I guess (in the same way) the purpose of this lecture series is to work out a way to give knowledge of the Doppleganger to others who have not had the opportunity to join us in our deliberations. And in this way help them with their lives.

Aldous Huxley
A little quote from his 1930's Novel "Eyeless in Gaza" published in the 1950.

From chapter XLVI this little piece is typical of the sort of reference to the Doppleganger that one comes across in literature. We read such bits consider them for a minute and than put them aside and ignore them. Which is exactly what Huxley did on the other 499 pages of his novel.

Yet, consider, this is what all of the hundred chapters in 'Monkey, The Journey to the West' is about.

About the educational process and the way our Doubles and personalities come together during our schooling years.

Other readings of importance, not yet included in the material.

1. Huna. The Hawiannan magical/religious system that uses an understanding of the Doppleganger for magic and healing.

2. Voodoo and other magical systems that use hypnotism to access the Doppleganger's world.

3. Aboriginal Totems. There is fascinating material to be explored here. It appears that aboriginal culture understandings of the workings, ways and world of the Doppleganger was used to give everyone a direct link to the physical environment in a way that made for great personal and social stability through ecological understandings.

See also

Colin Wilson talks about the achievements of author Stan Gooch - psychologist and visionary writer Stan Gooch has developed a theory of the Double very similar to that being proposed here.

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text content by Steven Guth
page uploaded 14 September 2003, last modified 7 November 2009