George O'Neil The Text is Meditation

   George O'Neil although once a major figure in the Anthroposophical Movement in America is practically unknown today. O"Neil and his wife Gisela led study groups in New York City, Spring Valley, and California. Older Anthroposophists often recall fondly the intense study groups and lectures that George held. He and his wife would regularly contribute to the Anthroposophical Newsletters.

   George's main document, "A Work-book on the Philosophy of Spiritual Activity"  was a mimeographed, colorful handout printed in 1961. George was the first to discover and spell out the wave-forms of Steiner's main book  and more importantly how the Philosophy of Freehood, which has no meditation suggestions, was the equivalent to Knowledge of Higher Worlds which is replete with recommended exercises. By living in pure thought-waves the meditator enters into pure-thinking, a state where one start to clean up one's soul life. To develop the capacities Steiner had, one needs to think like Steiner.

   In Knowledge of Higher Worlds, Steiner gave  indications about the importance of reading meditatively important works such as  the Imitation of Christ by Thomas ad Kempis, the Bhagavad Gita, Hegel's Logik, and the New Testament. Thus text study is an important part of the Anthroposophical path. Meditation, however, is the other.  Unrecognized today, is the further level O'Neil went  in showing how one can enter into pure thinking when recalling a Steiner text in its organic form.

  

   Why is George"s work so obscure? Few of George's students grasped the significance of these diagrams and the importance of immersing oneself in the thought-patterns in the text. When George died only one of his students survived him.  Just Florin Lowndes  went on to publish and edit a series of books based on George's research. From George's Newsletters articles, Lowndes culled together two books in O'Neil's honor: The Human Life and The Enlivening of the Chakra of the Heart. Based on George's  Work-Book on the Philosophy of Freedom handout and other private notes, Lowndes expanded upon and published Das Erwecken Des Herzdenkens, a book which contains nearly every quote Steiner gave on the nature of the Logik of the Heart. Thus we have three books derived from O'Neil's work.

   George experienced that by meditating on the Philosophy of Freedom, one can open up super-sensory knowledge or vision. By repeatedly meditating on the paragraphs  in their Heart-Logik forms, one builds spiritual capacities and the ability to see in tableau form and to experience the BEINGS beyond the forms. It doesn't matter actually which text of Steiner one chooses.  O'Neil continued to research the Heart-Logik formations in many of Steiner's books such as Theosophy, Occult Science, and Knowledge of Higher Worlds.

   It seems George never left behind his own heart-thinking translation with proper paragraph structures and sentence-count. He also left very little on how to meditate on a Steiner book.

  

 

  His journal has never been made public by his student Lowndes, and Lowndes has never fully disclosed what George taught him. Lowndes in his book writes about the levels and stages of the experience of meditating on the Philosophy of Freehood. But what we do know is that those who have figured out this meditation have had both positive and negative results. In some cases the spiritual experiences they had were without proper grounding and soul-hygiene.  So it seems that if this meditation is done at a very intense level, it could be dangerous. Luckily most people read Steiner in very intellectual way, never entering into the thought-streams of the heart-thinking.

  There are other unforeseen problems such as that Steiner had his own issues and energies which over the course of his career affected his books. For example, when such a sensitive figure as Owen Barfield said that his favorite Steiner book was GA 2, maybe it was because Steiner's youthful energies were not tainted by the tragedies and mistakes he made later in his life. It is a truism that an author's earliest works are cleaner than his later works. Kind of like a Martin Luther phenomenon. - I know: heresy! - But it is worth considering if there is some truth to this.

   Look at the constant battles raging in Anthroposophy today and the well-earned reputation of the unbridled arrogance of branch members. How often does one hear people talking as if they were speaking for Rudolf Steiner when they have zero spiritual abilities. Or even worse when they behave like Stalinists toward Steiner never finding any insight why this Anthroposophy has been relegated to the "has-been" pile of spiritual movements. Like the Swedenborgians. (To be fair to Steiner it is not unusual for a great individual to be recognized centuries after his death. Since he died in 1925, we still have at least another 9 years, or maybe 109 years until Steiner's special way of thinking becomes fully incorporated into civilization.)

  This may be why George was so careful to NOT publish anything. He knew these matters required a careful touch, and that these meditations in wave-forms could be playing with fire.  Steiner gave his own warnings about reading his books carefully and in their proper order, saying that one could become mentally ill if this was not heeded. 

  George's work could be best served by having people experiment with this new form of meditation. Also it would be helpful to have a team of translators who could render accurate translations of Steiner's basic books.  Recent English translations deviate greatly from the German original thanks to the free-style British translation school of Bamford and Gollogly (Steiner Press) who maintained that simplified translations would attract the average person to Anthroposophy.  There is much work to be done if Steiner and George are to be honored in the right light, and the Logik of the Heart is to be recognized in the world.