These essay of Rudolf Steiner first appeared in 1904. They were written for a periodical to begin with. In the essays Steiner talked by use of a terminology that he coined for the Occident on top of one has been taken from Oriental literature of the Theosophical Society.
The gist that follows is from Paul Marshal Allen's introduction to the work Cosmic Memory (1959). Some of Steiner's topics are continued in the books Theosophy and Geheimwissenschaft im Umriss.
"Writings like these about the Akasha Chronicle cannot fail to appear as wild phantasy . . . we include some points relating to Atlantean humanity." - Marie Steiner-von Sivers (1867-1948), Steiner' second wife
One needs to evaluate what is worth striving for. If you understand your true goals, the next stage is learning to put many of them to good and savoury use. It matters to gain resources on which to develop more individuality wisely. That freedom has to be worth striving for.
One editor to another: "How to develop others may pay."
"When correctly understood, the truths of the science of the spirit will give man a true foundation for his life, will let him recognize his value, his dignity, and his essence, and will give him the highest zest for living. For these truths enlighten him about his connection with the world around him; they show him his highest goals, his true destiny." - Rudolf Steiner.
The man whose vistas we look into, could experience the spiritual world and transmit to others concrete, detailed information. He journeyed from Norway, Sweden and Finland in the north to Italy in the south to transmit the information he had reached: Man is of exalted origins and has to struggle to gain better understanding. And that is no small work in a life-time.
In certain ways Steiner tried to reach the utmost possible - in matters of style, even, also when he lectured and described his outlooks in city after city on the European continent. He also worked as an editor of Das Magazin fur Litteratur, a well-known literary periodical.
He laid the foundation for a spirited educational movement in the light of the science of the spirit. By this is meant: He learnt how to develop certain clairvoyant insights, and teach his means to others. He attracted men and women to his movement, the Anthroposophical movement, and got help to build a centre at Dornach near Basel in Switzerland. It's stage, the Goetheanum stage, was one of the finest in Europe. It may still be. A Clinical and Therapeutical Institute at Arlesheim, Switzerland, came into being too.
Getting something out of his readings today demands willingness to understand on our part - when we read him. It is also sound counsel to sleep on his thoughts in order to consider them better, eventually.
At the age of twenty-five, Steiner had shown his comprehensive grasp of details of knowledge in the Goethe-Schiller Archives, and in 1891 he received his PhD at the University of Rostock. In somewhat enlarged form, his thesis appeared under the title, Wahrheit und Wissenschaft (Truth and Science), as the preface to Steiner's chief philosophical work, Die Philosophie der Freiheit, 1894. Later he suggested The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity as the title of the English translation of this book. ◇
For nearly twenty years, observations on current affairs, reviews
of books and plays, along with comment on scientific and philosophical
developments flowed from his spirit and pen.
Many enigmas must be evaluated and freedom is worth striving for
Today the Goetheanum is the world headquarters of his movement that means to improve the future of mankind. It encompasses Waldorf Education (or Rudolf Steiner Education)
NOTE. The Goethanum that Steiner talks about, was the First Goetheanum, a timber and concrete structure designed by him. This building was destroyed by arson on New Year's Eve, 1922/1923. During 1923, Steiner designed the Second Goetheanum, wholly built of cast concrete. It lies in Switzerland. (Wikipedia, "Goetheanum")
Careful effort should be made to preserve as much as possible of what is good for man, for animal and plant life on the planet.
The atomic age makes re-evaluation and methodical upgrading of essential knowledge much to be desired. No single area of inherently sound knowledge ought to be left out of consideration. Nor should the important human enigmas.
His educational movement has documented that many of his ideas can
be grasped by the simplest people and put into practice too. His methods
of Bio-Dynamic Farming and Gardening have become much popular in many
countries. Steiner has also left the world many indications of new
directions in Mathematics, Physics, Painting, Sculpture, Music Therapy,
Drama, Speech Formation, Astronomy, Economics, and Psychology.
If you succumb to deep impressions, you may have to work on them too!
The philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche made a deep impression on Steiner, and many who have read the lecturing Rudolf Steiner have been impressed and experienced a kind of awakening within themselves. Here is a quote to brood on for those who like:
"At that time [long, long ago] the body consisted of a soft malleable mass . . . One must by no means think that the egg-man . . . was brooded. . . . He could . . . (concentrate) heat. He was thus in a position to supply the young organism with the warmth which it needed for its maturation." - Rudolf Steiner, Ibid, ch 7. ✪
Articles and much else in life need to be evaluated from one's impressions and good judgement in combinations. Skills can be developed for it.
Ideas from Paul Marshal Allen's introduction to the work Cosmic Memory, 1959.
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