I’m tired and my thinking is muddy today, but there are a number of ideas I want to explore. I’ve been jotting down notes lately when I haven’t had time to write—just getting the general ideas down—and I’m struck by how nutty it sounds. If someone stumbled upon these notes they would surely look as nutty to them as some of Steiner’s writings look to me.
In his first lecture Steiner talks about the way in which breath is related to metabolism:
…Of all the relationships humans have to the physical world, the most important is breathing. Breathing begins the moment we enter the physical world. Breathing in the mother’s body is a preparatory breathing; it does not bring people into complete relationship with the physical world. What we properly call breathing begins only when the human being leaves the mother’s body. This breathing is extremely important for the human essence, since the entire three-part system of the physical human is connected to it.We include the metabolic system as one of the members of the three-part physical human being. However, the metabolism is intimately connected with breathing—the breathing process is connected metabolically with blood circulation. In the human body, the blood circulation absorbs the material of the external world that has been brought in through other means, so that, on the one hand, breathing is, in a sense, connected with the metabolism. Breathing has its own functions, but in this way it is also connected with the metabolism.
And it occurs to me that blood is the sacred substance within us where earth and sky influences mingle. We breathe in sky and eat the earth. Our lungs and intestines feed the blood with these elements. Our blood carries our environment to every cell in our bodies. I need to study the emerging field of epigenetics (as yet the library carries nothing on this subject) because I feel like there’s something important there. We bring our environment inside, but then somehow through enzymatic interactions with that environment, genes can express themselves differently. I understand so little about the subject, but I really sense there’s something significant to it. As I’ve said somewhere before, I believe genetics to be environment that has been internalized and codified. We are continuously internalizing our environment, fluidly shaping genetic expression based on the part of the matrix we consume and digest. When conditions remain the same for generations it makes sense for the body to codify the particular genetic expressions which are a response to those conditions.
Nowadays the mix of earth and sky in our blood is not a healthy one. We’re not eating our own soil—our own patch of the matrix—food comes from somewhere else and is starved for the soil. The plants can only uptake a few doctored nutrients—mostly nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium unnaturally introduced—and the most beneficial elements of the earth remain unavailable. We can’t fully internalize the earth and that leads to an imbalance. We always have the local sky influences in us, but not the local earth. Maybe that’s why we are too cerebral and rational—we’re able to innovate, yet our innovations are disconnected from the earth. Therefore we act destructively towards the earth.
Here are the ways we internalize our place in the matrix—through eating the earth and drinking the water, breathing in the sky, absorbingly the sun through our skin and eyes, and using our senses to absorb nature via metaphor. There’s probably more, too. I don’t yet understand the electrical and magnetic properties of life, but maybe we are absorbing both earthly and cosmic energies through those forces, I don’t know.
Another interesting tidbit from the Secrets of the Soil book. One chapter was about the amazing effects of sound. One guy discovered that the frequencies of birdsong causes a plants pores or stomata to open. He developed a nutrient-rich foliar spray and used it in conjunction with recordings at birdsong frequency to allow the plants to absorb the food well, leading to spectacular yields. It brings home to me the sacredness of sound. How beautiful to imagine the birds singing the plant kingdom awake every morning. And how sad and scary to think about our dwindling bird populations.
Another chapter in the Secrets of the Soil book was about antennae of various sorts, and it got me seeing every tree, plant, and blade of grass as some form of antenna—and wondering if the human dome-shaped skull isn’t an antenna of sorts (it mentioned that horns and antlers seem to have some properties of antennae).