Self-knowledge -- Sources

Source texts from the books by Jozef Rulof for the article ‘self-knowledge’.
By Ludo Vrebos, based on the books by Jozef Rulof.
These sources presume the prior reading of the article ‘self-knowledge’.

Setting to work ourselves

At a contact evening a member of the audience asks what the then writer Paul Brunton had to offer in order to get to know ourselves:
Mr Reitsma asks: ‘How do I get to know myself?
There you have the question, which keeps occupying us.
Paul Brunton, who is close to you, has written a new book about this, entitled: ‘The Secret Path’, in which he reveals a practical method, especially suitable for the Western human being, in order to get to know himself.
He calls this process ‘transfiguration’.
Paul Brunton wishes to achieve this by:
a) self-analysis
b) a daily ten minute concentration
c) a breathing technique and body yoga, as fakirs, magicians and yogis practise this
The dedicated pupil must bring his thoughts and feelings under control, which, according to Paul Brunton, can be achieved in a few years by means of a strong will and the daily ten minute concentration.
Then, according to him, intuition comes forward, which prepares the way for the pupil to his Divine ‘ego’.
Now my question is: Can this be achieved in one life in your opinion?’
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
Jozef replies that we have a mass of knowledge about the human being at our disposal by means of his 27 books:
Jozef says: ‘You will read in the books how you get to know yourself, and then you will already have begun with it!!
What are all the things you already know about your life?
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
That knowledge goes much further than Paul Brunton, because he did not have any direct contact with spiritual masters:
And Paul Brunton has not yet achieved this; at least he does not know our laws and does not possess any spiritual contact either.
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
The masters completely analyze the human being and the life for us:
There are no secrets for the cosmos, the masters can now analyse the life and as a result of this you will get to know yourself!
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
Jozef indicates that people will not get far with ten minutes of concentration per day:
What do you want to achieve with all those methods, Mr Reitsma, with that concentrating ten minutes a day?
Nothing, if your concentration does not always continue, your life is not tuned into the books.
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
Anyone who wishes to gain the knowledge about life and death under the own power will not get any further than the own grade of feeling:
You have it much and a thousand times easier than all those yogis and fakirs, because we continually possess the contact and they do not.
They must now try this under their own power and will not come further than they possess in own feeling and consciousness!
You will read this once more in the books ‘Spiritual Gifts.’
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
Jozef indicates that we make progress by doing good, by loving:
Do good and then you will continue and love, what you can love and the Spheres of Light will be open to your life.
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
The lectures of his spiritual master Zelanus give us a panorama, but we are first faced with mastering spiritual feeling:
As a result of the lectures by master Zelanus you will already enter the ‘All’, but now you already want to master that ‘All-consciousness’?
First master spiritual feeling, that is enough for this life; then the spatial, but you know that too, we already talked about that; you therefore know that difficulty!
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
In order to achieve the knowledge about life after death under the own power, thirty lives are needed:
To achieve what Paul Brunton talks about requires thirty lives.
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950
Spiritual expansion does not come by means of a breathing technique:
And what do you hope to achieve by means of a breathing system?
Spiritual expansion perhaps?
Spiritual awakening, a higher love?
Come on, don’t make me laugh, that is all very well for the East, not for our life, because we know, that we must make it by means of hard work and serving and not by anything else.
Questions and Answers Part 1, 1950


The contact evenings were held in the hall ‘Ken U Zelven’ (’Know Thyself’):
Do you know yourself as a human being?
It says here: ‘Know Yourself.’
Questions and Answers Part 2, 1951
Jozef makes a distinction between the knowledge about the human being which we can get from his books and mastering that knowledge themselves:
You have twenty books there, you can now read them from me.
But you can read two thousand of them, and then you will still not be conscious, because you must master it.
Questions and Answers Part 2, 1951
That mastering does not happen by means of reading, that requires a fight against the lower characteristics in ourselves:
If you say: ‘I still doubt myself, and I am willing, but it is still not working.’
My dear child, all those people are really fighting a battle here.
But you do not believe that either and I do not believe it either.
Because there are plenty there, and enough and sufficient, they are thinking, but they still do nothing for it.
They read, madam, and they think it is all wonderful and stand talking and also already know a lot; and they kick left and right from themselves.
Left and right, they kick away from themselves.
And he says: ‘Yes, they are those little devils in me.’
If you know that those things are there, they are the snide remarks we make to each other, why we hack those things ...
But that does not go suddenly.
To conquer a small characteristic, madam, is a fight for life and death.
But once you have mastered that ...
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
It is turning oneself inside out in order to conquer the destructive character traits:
Do you understand it, madam?
They are all busy groaning here.
Who is not groaning here?
If you begin with this battle, you are busy groaning, you pull yourself inside out.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
Jozef talks about ‘bowing’ as a necessary condition for getting to know ourselves and growing spiritually.
Bowing is accepting, and the opposite of ‘being in rebellion’.
How do I get to know myself?
How does the human being learn to bow.
Bowing is everything.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
We do not get bowing to everything that comes to us just like that by reading books:
What are the first foundations for Socrates?
How do I get to know myself?
Sir, what is the first foundation for that?
Yes, Mr Götte.
(Gentleman in the hall): ‘To know what your origin is and what you live for.’
No, no no no, you do not need to read any books at all.
It is not working: where the origin lives and what you are and what you are like; I have just told you it already: first bowing to everything, to suffering, to sorrow.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
By this Jozef also means accepting the death of a fellow human being.
For him the deceased person receives spiritual ‘wings’, the human being soars like a spiritual personality out of that material body:
You can say, you stand here now, you are having a nice seat together, you still talk to each other, but if you cannot bow to that death, that Grim Reaper ...
You know all that, and you know the laws, and you have already been ‘behind the coffin’; yes, indeed, you would like that.
Now you must all soon, one by one, prove what you can do, now we want to see that.
I will certainly not stand and weep with you at the grave.
For me the human being gets his spiritual ‘wings’; he does not yet have Great Wings, because they are still broken-winged.
You only get the Great Wings and the spiritual ‘wings’ if you prove to me ... if the proverb by Socrates has and will get meaning for your life of feeling and personality: how do I get to know myself?
The first foundation of that is: how will I learn to bow to everything?
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
During the war Jozef met people who looked death in the eye and accepted it without collapsing:
And then I met people during the war who had more and a thousand times more than you here, and everyone.
I do not know how you must act soon.
But we have already got and seen it from many people, who did not collapse, and stood before the firing squad and were shot down.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
And on the other hand, he knew people who read his books, but who collapsed when they themselves were confronted with the death of a loved one:
And people read books here, they master something, and bow to nothing, sir.
They do not think, they think completely off the mark.
They just go around it.
Oh sir, they talk there in society, and then they have: ‘Oh sir, just go away.
Your wife is dead?
Oh sir, just carry on.’
His wife is alive, isn’t she?
‘Yes, your wife is alive, sir, will I tell you something?
Do you want to read books?’
After four months they have to prove it themselves, sir, and they collapse.
Boasting, sir, there in the office.
Sir, if you come to the other side and you stand there and you want to convince people and you have not yet proved it yourself; sir, that sphere will not even be there.
You do not even have another side, madam and sir, and no hold and no bottom under your feet, because you had to first prove that here, and you have to prove that there, and everywhere, by bowing.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
Jozef indicates that he also had to accept physical diseases instead of overwhelming another person:
And how did you think now that I learned to think when master Alcar began with me?
Just to overawe the human being: I know everything, I have been on the other side, I write books, they paint, and I may disembody, and I fly through space?
Oh madam, I must first still be able to experience a perfectly ordinary dose of scarlet fever, a lovely dose of pneumonia, in order to prove that I can bow to a delicious slap right in my face, now in the lungs.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
There are members of the audience who ask what they will be like in the All, the ultimate destination of our soul.
However, they forget that it is about whether they try to live truth in their daily lives:
The human being asks what he will be like in the Divine All and forgets what he will be like here in the truth.
If you begin about cosmology, we are now talking about the cosmology in the Diligentia, about the universe, about the universe ...
Madam, every thought is universally deep, master Zelanus says and the masters say, and that is the truth.
Prove first what you can do.
We can boast and shout and make a fuss.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
There are people who want everything for nothing, but cannot conquer any own character trait:
The human being wants to imitate me by possessing gifts.
I wished you could do it, and that you could really do it; then you would get everything free from me, if you do it just like that.
But in one week you will be completely finished, out of society, then Rosenburg will expect you.
And we all know Rosenburg here in The Hague, that is a mental institution, a psychiatric institution.
But the human being wants this, and the human being does that, and the human being does this, and the human being wants everything; yes, from another person!
But when he comes to stand before that coffin, that dying of a characteristic ...
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952

Love for the life

We get to know ourselves especially in the contact with our fellow human being.
If a disorder in ourselves arises which threatens to prevent us from understanding and loving our fellow human being, then we can set to work to not give any space to that disorder:
Ladies and gentlemen, is it true or not, if you can understand each other and you can bow your head with each other, and you really watch out so that you do not experience any disturbances, then you will have a heaven as a paradise.
And then you certainly do not need to be rich, then it will really not matter whether you have money.
But then a walk in nature is worth more than a theatre, than a big dinner, and a cinema, and a car, madam, because standing on your own two feet in Mother Nature and the unity, the seat, and the conversation, and the laughter, and the feeling of that fine soul next to you because you understand each other ...
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952
We can love all the people if we approach everyone as a divine soul and life and distance ourselves from the human character:
If you can really do that, madam, and you go into that human being, you descend into that human being, you really talk to a deity, a living God and you renounce that Herman, that Nico, or that Pietje, and Klaasje, and Kees - and whatever all those people are called - and we are not concerned with ourselves, but we still see each other as life, then you will experience paradise.
Questions and Answers Part 3, 1952