Rudolf Steiner, Austrian philosopher and teacher of anthroposophy, developed a theory of personal development with the goal of achievement of integrity, based on seven-year cycles. These cycles have their own link in astrology.
Every seven years the planet Uranus, which symbolizes revolutionary changes and development of individuality, changes the astrological sign, and then there are often crucial changes in our lives, such as divorce, change of job, moving, termination of some relationships, etc.
This is the beginning of everything, the basis on which our structure will be built are created. Infant already carries the potential of intelligence, creativity and personality. During this early phase, the instincts of hunger, the need for love, protection and support are the most prominent. The first year is the most important for the development of brain cells, the brain of the child develops at a high speed. In the first cycle, we go through a learning process that involves motoric movements, speech, attitude towards ourselves and our environment. We accept basic knowledge of what is useful, fun or harmful.
We are completely dependent on the people who take care of us. If there is no emotional support and concern at this age, it is a trauma that manifests in adulthood when a partner leaves us or distances himself emotionally.
Many feelings of fear, addiction and insecurity have a root in this phase of the life cycle.
Child begins to discover the concepts and the connection of ideas and emotions. There are also significant physical changes. This is the period of entering new maturity. Child creates its own inner world. This is the world of heroes, danger and vivid imagination.
As the thymus fades, and sex organs begin to develop, the person passes into the turbulent world of puberty and adolescence. Occupations and activities that the child will deal with in adulthood are revealed. The habits learned in the first cycle now become part of the character of the growing child.
14 -21 YEARS
We become more aware of ourselves. It can be said that we are developing self-awareness. The range of emotional interests spreads in different directions, there is an interest in music, art, literature and people.
It has been found that the ability to distinguish subtle tones of colors and sounds develops in puberty. This is the time of awakening of independence and separation from parents.
It is also the time of search for life, for independence, the realization of some choices. Awareness of sexuality is also emerging.
Since this is a turbulent period of life for most of us, there will probably be times of intense and unforgettable experiences. There are major changes, from physical, emotional, moral to cognitive. We often go through the experience of loss.
The world of carefree childhood fades, and experiences brings the first significant emotional wounds. We choose partners to satisfy personal needs, cherish a romantic view of the world and we are not always aware of who is opposite of us.
This is a period in which we mentally and emotionally enter the adult age. We started building the foundations of our career and intimate relationships with the hope that our achievements will enable us to be respected in the adult world.
We want to be something to somebody, and emotional maturity implies that one does not lose his will and independence by entering a relationship. We become aware of the problems that arise in relation to others. The need for freedom on one hand and the desire for attachment on the other can create an internal conflict. In this period we start facing problems and pain that we experienced at the earliest childhood, and this is mostly reflected in the area of intimate relationships, the life in the role of a partner and the way we deal with problems. If we don’t detect some of our early and internal conflicts now, this confrontation will be much more direct in the cycles that are coming.
As the years go by, changes become more subtle. In this cycle, the creative processes of the mind are the most active. Researchers have their greatest inventions in these years. The centers of the brain are at the peak of their effectiveness at the age of about thirty-five.
Most of the great religious teachers and artists have come to great revelations and achievements precisely during this cycle. Now we study ourselves and emotional influences that have shaped our personality more.
There is a desire to share with others what we have acquired and learnt so far. We estimate the results of previous achievements. Our relations, career, adopted habits and the way of interaction with others, it is all subjected to observation, revision and changes.
There are big changes in this cycle. We summarize the past life experience, create new ideals and we try to find direction in life. In this period, there is often a strong restlessness. Neglected aspects of life and of our own personality call for recognition. We are followed by the feeling that we have reached the middle of life, followed by a fall. We change partners, life guidelines, priorities, we also experience great personal changes that started in the previous cycle.
Many even at this age are still at the level of emotional maturity of a child, they feel fear of abandonment, jealousy, and possessiveness. In this period there are frequent divorces.
This cycle is followed by physical changes that lead us towards mental or spiritual peaks. All unresolved internal conflicts or childhood traumas will undoubtedly be on the list of our tasks, and the problems will be most visible through the challenges that we encounter in professional or love life. Now we have to learn to live with ourselves in a new way.
This is the time of spiritual reflection and revision of our life purpose. If we have not understood who we are until this stage and achieved our goals, then depression, insanity, and internal turmoil will affect our lives and our dreams.
This is a period of inner peace and acceptance. We are at peace with ourselves, and we accept where we are and what we have accomplished. Usually, the life situation begins to change at this stage. A great change has begun, both regarding our outward expression, as well as in the way we feel in close relationships and toward our close ones. Part of the problem is that we have lived most of our life as a young person, and that way of living life is now difficult to abandon, but also necessary because our body slows us down.
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Now we have deeper acceptance and understanding of people in our lives. We perceive and accept differences between ourselves and others.
It seems as if we're standing at a big crossroads. Where do we want to go now?
If during your life you did not work on solving the difficulties, weaknesses or pain that live in you, then this period can lead to a lot of confusion and encounter with your own shadows that you have never faced before.
There are fewer external pressures, and a new level of maturity is easier to achieve. If you solve the problems that you encountered in the previous cycle, there is a new awareness of the subtle sides of life and the relationship with those you love changes.
During the previous three periods, a new core developed. There is a synthesis of the survived. If you have developed through self-awareness, you are able to see that your present life is a continuum of a long past, in which the life experiences of our ancestors which have affected our life, have been preserved. From this new 'me', the widespread perception of life comes the wisdom.