Region of liking and disliking
The region of liking and disliking (or of pleasure and displeasure) is the fourth and middle area of the astral world. From this region are taken those soul forces which in the astral body of man and animals strive primarily for the preservation and well-being of the physical body. In the life after death, when passing through this region, man must give up his desire for the physical body. Suicides who have artificially deprived themselves of their bodies and thereby cut off their earthly destiny experience a very strong pain of deprivation in the process.
„The region of liking and disliking in the world of the soul, which has been called the fourth above, imposes special trials on the soul. As long as it dwells in the body, it participates in everything that concerns this body. The weaving of pleasure and displeasure is linked to it. It causes it well-being and comfort, displeasure and discomfort. During physical life, man feels his body as his self. What is called self-feeling is based on this fact. And the more sensually inclined people are, the more their sense of self takes on this character. - After death, the body is missing as the object of this feeling of self. The soul, which has retained this feeling, therefore feels as if it were hollowed out. It is afflicted with a feeling as if it had lost itself. This lasts until it is recognised that the true human being does not lie in the physical. The effects of this fourth region therefore destroy the illusion of the bodily self. The soul no longer learns to feel this corporeality as something essential. It is healed and purified of the inclination to corporeality. Through this it has overcome what previously strongly chained it to the physical world, and it can fully develop the powers of sympathy that go outwards. It has, so to speak, come away from itself and is ready to pour itself sympathetically into the general world of the soul.
It should not go unmentioned that the experiences of this region are experienced to a special degree by suicides. They leave their physical body artificially, while all the feelings connected with it remain unchanged. In natural death, the decay of the body is accompanied by the partial death of the feelings attached to it. In the case of suicides, in addition to the agony caused by the feeling of sudden hollowing out, there are the unsatisfied desires and wishes because of which they have emptied themselves.“ (Lit.:GA 9, p. 115f)
- Rudolf Steiner: Theosophie. Einführung in übersinnliche Welterkenntnis und Menschenbestimmung , GA 9 (2003), ISBN 3-7274-0090-0 English: rsarchive.org German: pdf pdf(2) html mobi epub archive.org
References to the work of Rudolf Steiner follow Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works (CW or GA), Rudolf Steiner Verlag, Dornach/Switzerland, unless otherwise stated.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org URL: www.steinerverlag.com.
Index to the Complete Works of Rudolf Steiner - Aelzina Books
A complete list by Volume Number and a full list of known English translations you may also find at Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works
Rudolf Steiner Archive - The largest online collection of Rudolf Steiner's books, lectures and articles in English (by Steiner Online Library).
Rudolf Steiner Audio - Recorded and Read by Dale Brunsvold
steinerbooks.org - Anthroposophic Press Inc. (USA)
Rudolf Steiner Handbook - Christian Karl's proven standard work for orientation in Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works for free download as PDF.