In his lectures “Popular Occultism” Rudolf Steiner described the system of the seven main lotus flowers as follows:
“There are seven such astral organs. The first, the two-petalled lotus flower, is in the region of the bridge of the nose; the second, the sixteen-petalled, is at the level of the larynx; the third, the twelve-petalled, at the level of the heart; the fourth, the eight to ten-petalled, near the navel; the fifth, the six-petalled, a little lower down; the sixth, the four-petalled, still below, the swastika, which is connected with all that is fertilization; the seventh cannot simply be spoken of. These six organs have the same meaning for the soul world as the physical senses have for the perception of the sense world. “
GA 94, p. 173
“The individual mental and spiritual organs that are formed can be called comparatively“ lotus flowers ”, according to the form that supersensible consciousness has to make of them (imaginatively). (Of course you have to be clear that such a designation has nothing more to do with the matter than the expression “wing” when one speaks of “lungs”.
The astral body is affected by very specific types of inner immersion in such a way that one or the other spiritual and spiritual organ, one or the other “lotus flower” is formed. After all that has been said in this book, it should be superfluous to emphasize that one does not have to think of these “organs of observation” as something that in the imagination of one’s sensual image is an imprint of one’s reality.
These “organs” are supersensible and consist in a certain form of soul activity; and they exist only insofar and as long as this soul activity is practiced.
Something that can be viewed as sensible is as little in man with these organs as there is some “haze” around him when he thinks. Anyone who wants to imagine the supersensible in a sensual way ends up in misunderstandings. “
GA 13, p. 345)
“The difference between physical and astral organs is that man’s physical sense organs are passive; they let everything act on them from the outside. The eyes, ears and so on are initially in a state of calm, they have to wait until something is offered to them, light, sounds and so on.
In contrast to this, the spiritual organs are active, they encompass the object like a bracket. ”
GA 95, p. 41ff
“The lotus flowers are internal movements, they are within the human being.”
GA 95, p. 146.
“The lotus flowers only perceive when they are moving, when they are grasping an object. The vibrations excited by the turning of the lotus flowers then cause a touch of the astral matter, and this is how perception arises on the astral plane. ”
GA 95, p. 112
“One should not imagine these organs as something that has an imprint of its reality in the imagination of its sensual image. These organs are supersensible and consist in a certain form of soul activity; and they exist only insofar and as long as this soul activity is practiced.
Something that can be viewed as sensible is as little in man with these organs as there is some “haze” around him when he thinks. Anyone who really wants to imagine the supersensible in a sensual way gets into misunderstandings. ”
GA 13, p. 345
“These organs develop through the exercises the teacher gives the student, just as the senses of the physical body are developed through practice. You must not believe that any tumultuous processes, sorcery and the like can lead a person to develop these sense organs. They are only intimate processes, a learning within the thoughts, which have the power to develop such organs. ”
GA 98, p. 29f
“The place of experience is – as mentioned here – one’s own astral body. Because that is the case, the spiritual student in the supersensible world first sees what he knows best: himself. However, not in physical form, but in mental activity that is constantly changing. In order to get from there to a perception of the spiritual environment, further training is required: “(it) … that higher activity comes about through which we rise from the soul to the spirit, where that which appears to us only as inner life in Thinking, feeling and willing, now appear in the outside world, carried by spiritual beings. ”
GA 115, p. 56