There are seven grades of human consciousness: trance consciousness, deep sleep, dream consciousness, waking consciousness, psychic, super-psychic and spiritual consciousness. Actually these are in all twelve stages of consciousness; (3) the five others are creative stages. They are those of the Creators, of the creative Gods. These twelve stages are related to the twelve signs of the zodiac. The human being must pass through the experiences of these twelve stages. He ascended through the trance, deep sleep and dream consciousness up to the present clear day consciousness. In the succeeding stages of planetary evolution he will reach still higher stages. All those which he has already passed through he will also retain within him. The physical body has the dull trance consciousness as this was gained by man on Old Saturn. The human etheric body has the consciousness of dreamless sleep, as this developed on Old Sun. The astral body dreams in the same way as one dreams during sleep. Dream consciousness derives from the Old Moon period. On our present Earth, man achieves waking consciousness. The ego has clear day-consciousness.
Higher development consists in this, that one casts out what is in one’s own being in the same way as man has cast out the snake, thereby retaining the snake on a higher level in his spinal cord. With still further development human beings will not only cast out stones, plants and animals into the world, but also stages of consciousness. In a stock of bees, for example, there are three kinds of beings which have a soul in common. (4) Seemingly quite separated beings carry out a common work. In the future this will also be the case with man; he will separate off his organs. He will have to control consciously from outside all the single molecules of his brain. Then he will have become a higher being. This will also be so with his stages of consciousness. One can imagine a lofty being who has put forth from himself all twelve stages of consciousness. He himself is then present as the thirteenth and will say: I could not be what I am, if I had not separated off from myself these twelve stages of consciousness. The twelve apostles represent the stages of consciousness through which the Christ passed. This can be recognised in the thirteenth chapter of St. John in the description of the Washing of the Feet, (5) which indicates that Christ is indebted to the apostles for his attainment of the higher stages of consciousness: ‘Verily, Verily, I say unto you, the servant is not greater than his lord’.