BD 2091 30.09.1941
Danger of accepting established traditions ....
It is incomprehensible when a person supports a traditionally adopted teaching which would barely stand up to serious scrutiny. Only someone hungry for truth scrutinises every teaching and will indeed be successful insofar as that he will be able to differentiate between misguided teachings and the truth and correspondingly decide for or against existing doctrines. He will accept what he recognises as truth and retain it as a precious possession. But he will also disassociate himself easily from that which seems untrue to him, he will consider it worthless and thus he will not hesitate to give it up, to reject it. And only then will he value the doctrine and be imbued by it. And since it came alive in him he will stand up for this teaching, whereas traditionally adopted teachings are lifeless possessions, for they are accepted and kept due to some sense of duty. The person dare not voice his own opinion and strictly adheres to the teaching people imparted to him. Such a doctrine cannot lead to spiritual maturity in a person, for only that which he recognises as truth refines his nature. But in order to recognise the truth of a teaching the person must weigh up all pros and cons. If this is his serious will, he will recognise the truth and his work will begin .... to enlighten his fellow human beings as well. However, a person can only endorse that teaching which he himself regards to be true. Hence he must have examined it first before he can pass a teaching on. A certain sign of the value of a teaching is when it can be imparted to a fellow human being with complete confidence. If a person is so penetrated by it that he is capable of imparting a teaching understandably and acceptably then it can also be assumed that he has seriously examined it himself, for he cannot explain something that is still unclear to him, nor would it stand up to serious scrutiny and would therefore be discarded by himself as worthless. Thus, when it is being discussed, the battle of words will be won by that person who had formed an opinion about a doctrine and thought about it himself. He will find it easy to inform his fellow human being because he will have mastered the content of what he wants to pass on, whereas an adopted doctrine becomes more a game of words, because it cannot stand up to closer inspection and is therefore not suitable to be passed on. In that case people can only ever adhere to the wording of a teaching; however, the meaning of the wording causes confusion among people, just as, vice versa, the imparting of a teaching which was recognised to be true will lead to bright light and realisation in a fellow human being. This is why the acceptance of traditional religious doctrines must be warned against time and again, for they offer little or nothing at all to people. But something that should make people happy must be equally acceptable for all people, provided they are permeated by the desire for truth and see in it a mission to pass on what is imparted to them. They are fully capable of differentiating between truth and lies, thus a thoughtless acceptance of established traditions will be out of the question ....