Separation of the Moon

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According to Rudolf Steiner, the Moon-exit, the separation of the Moon from the Earth, took place in the course of the Earth evolution during the Lemurian period. Much earlier, during the Hyperborean period, the Sun had separated. The descriptions of the biblical creation story begin at about this time of the separation of the Sun. The Moon separation occurred after the seven Elohim, the direct Creator Spirits of the Earth, had ascended to the common Yahweh consciousness through their common creative activity. This prevented the progressive hardening of the Earth caused by the lunar forces, which would have made future earthly incarnations of man impossible. One of the essential further consequences of the separation of the Moon was the separation of the sexes.

„With the Sun, essentially, the Elohim have gone out from the Earth to move their scene outwards, to work from the circumference. But not all. Something of the Elohim remained, so to speak, united with the Earth, even when the Earth still had the lunar forces in its body. And that which at that time remained united with the Earth from the spiritual Elohim forces is that which is connected in a certain way with all the good effects of the lunar forces. For we must also speak of the good effects of the lunar forces. After the separation of the Sun, everything on Earth, especially man, would have been driven into mummification, into hardening, into lignification. Man would have died for the Earth. The Earth would have become barren if it had retained the lunar forces in its body. Within the Earth these lunar forces would not have been beneficial. Why did they nevertheless have to remain with the Earth for a time? For the reason that humanity had to endure, so to speak, all earthly conditions, because humanity in its most efficient representatives had to pass through this lunar condensation. But then, when the Moon had separated from the Earth, the forces which would otherwise have brought about death on Earth for mankind were beneficial. After the lunar forces had gone out, everything was refreshed again, so that even the weaker souls could come down and incorporate themselves into human bodies. Thus the Moon became the Earth's benefactor by becoming its neighbour. What it could never have been in the Earth itself, it became as its neighbour. Those beings who directed this whole series of processes are the great benefactors of man. Which beings were they? Well, those who were connected with the Moon, who then tore the Moon out of the Earth, as it were, in order to lead man on within the evolution of the Earth. We see from the Genesis account that the Elohim were the great directing powers. And what of these Elohim forces brought about that great and mighty fact of the Moon's departure, and thereby brought about the actual nature of man, was nothing other than what had also brought about the cosmic advancement of the Elohim to Yahweh-Elohim, what had led up the nature of the Elohim to Yahweh-Elohim. This remained united with the Moon, which then also led the Moon out of our Earth. Therefore we may say: with that which we find as the lunar body within our creation is intimately connected that which we call Yahweh-Elohim.“ (Lit.:GA 122, p. 169ff)

„As long as the Moon was within the Earth, what one can call the reproductive power of the animal beings was quite different from what it was later, after the Moon had flown out. I have told you that during the time when the Moon was still within the Earth, the Moon gave those forces to the Earth which are, so to speak, the maternal forces, the feminine forces. So that we can imagine: There was a time when the Moon was still inside the Earth. I will only show you schematically how that was.

Plate 8 from GA 347, p. 149
Plate 8 from GA 347, p. 149

When the Moon was still inside the Earth, it was not in the centre but a little to the outside (see drawing, left). If you look at the Earth today, you will notice that on one side, more towards where Australia lies, there is a lot of water on the Earth, while on the side where Europe and Asia lie, there is a lot of land. So that the Earth does not actually have land and water equally distributed, but the Earth is such that it actually has the most land on one side and the most water on the other. So the matter on the Earth is not equally distributed (see drawing p. 149, right). It was not evenly distributed when the Moon was still inside the Earth. The Moon was located on the side where the Earth tends to be heavy. Of course, if there is a solid substance, it is heavy there. So that I must draw the thing as I have marked it there with white chalk.“ (Lit.:GA 347, p. 149f)

Rudolf Steiner described the separation of the Moon very vividly in the Workers' Lectures:

„Later, however, a state of affairs, an event, occurred which was of very special importance. This history could have continued for a long time; but everything would not have become as it is now on earth. Everything would have remained as it is now, with clumsy animals together with air-capable animals inhabiting a living earthly body. But one day something special happened. You see, if we take this living formation of the earth (see drawing), it happened that one day a young one really, one might say, formed from this earth and went out into the space of the world. This thing happened in such a way that a small outgrowth came into being; it withered away and finally split off.

Plate 3 from GA 354, p. 36
Plate 3 from GA 354, p. 36

And instead of this one, a body arose outside in the space of the world, which had the air-like substance that is in the surroundings inside, and had the thick liquid outside. So an inverted body split off. While the Lunar Earth continued to have its inner core thick and its outer air thick, a body split off that had the thick on the outside and the thin on the inside. And in this body, if one approaches the matter not with prejudice but with proper investigation, one can recognise the Moon of today. Today one can already know quite precisely, just as one can find, for example, the sodium in the air, what the air is made of. So one can know quite precisely: The Moon was once inside the Earth! What is out there circling around as the Moon was inside the Earth and has separated from it, has gone out into the space of the world.

And with that, a whole change occurred both with the Earth and with that which went out. Above all: The Earth lost certain substances, and only now could the mineral substance form in the Earth. If the lunar substances had remained in the Earth, the mineral substance would never have been able to form, but it would always have been a liquid and moving substance. Only the Moon's exit brought death to the Earth and with it the mineral kingdom, which is dead. But it was with this that today's plants, today's animals and man in his present form became possible.“ (Lit.:GA 354, p. 36f)

In the time from the separation of the Sun to the separation of the Moon, man first embodied himself in the fire-mist that surrounded the Earth like a fine atmosphere. With the exit of the Moon, this changed and the body became denser.

„Then the Moon separated from the Earth. A great upheaval took place as a result. A large part of the warmth has gone out of the things that are around the human being. These things have become coarser and denser. Man must live in this cooled environment. He can only do this if he changes his own materiality. But this condensation of matter is at the same time linked to a change of form. For the condition of the fire-mist on Earth has itself given way to a quite different one. The consequence of this is that the higher beings described no longer have the fire-mist as a means of their effectiveness. They can therefore no longer exert their influence on the spiritual expressions of human life, which was previously their main field of activity. But they have received power over the human formations which they themselves had previously created out of the fire-mist. - This change of effect goes hand in hand with a transformation of the human form. One half with two organs of movement has been transformed into the lower half of the body, which has thus become mainly the bearer of nourishment and reproduction. The other half was turned upwards, as it were. The other two organs of movement have become the beginnings of hands. And those organs which previously served for nourishment and reproduction are transformed into organs of speech and thought. Man has erected himself. That is the direct consequence of the Moon's exit. And with the Moon all those forces have disappeared from the earthly body by which man could still fertilise himself during his time of fire-mist and bring forth beings of his own kind without external influence. The whole of his lower half - that which is often called lower nature - has now come under the intellectually formative influence of the higher beings. What these beings were previously able to regulate in man himself, because the mass of force now secreted in the Moon was still united with the Earth, they must now organise through the co-operation of the two sexes. From this it is understandable that the Moon is regarded by the initiates as the symbol of the power of procreation. These forces cling to it, so to speak. And the higher beings described have a relationship with the Moon, are to a certain extent gods of the Moon. Before the separation of the Moon they worked through its power in man, afterwards their powers worked from outside on the procreation of man.“ (Lit.:GA 11, p. 123f)


References to the work of Rudolf Steiner follow Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works (CW or GA), Rudolf Steiner Verlag, Dornach/Switzerland, unless otherwise stated.
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