Muddled, fantastic speculations

Many of our contemporaries have received the idea more or less superficially that spiritual science is something that lies far away from all practical life and cannot at all intervene anyhow in this practical life of the daily routine. You do not find the idea as seldom as it expresses itself in the words: oh, this spiritual science, it is something for single people who are tired of life who do not deal with anything practical and have time enough to deal with all sorts of muddled, fantastic speculations as the spiritual-scientific ideas are.

I do not deny from the outset that strictly speaking such a reproach is even justified with many theosophical/anthroposophical phenomena that it is often true that those who deal with theosophical/anthroposophical matters and ideas really face the everyday life as strangely as possible. However, even among those who have hard to fight and to work in the everyday life and bring themselves through only with pain and misery, those are found who are driven from inner sympathy, from the yearning of their hearts to spiritual science. Among them many a man will be for whom this duality — the everyday occupation, the everyday work from morning to night and then the merging in the great ideas has something marvellous. 

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 56 – Knowledge of Soul and Spirit: Lecture XI: Occupation and Earnings – Berlin, 12 March 1908

SteinerRudolf_midlife

How can joy and love become impulses of the daily work again?

A human being who works on a small part in the factory will never have the abandon for the product that the former craftsman had; this is past retrieval. It is never possible in future with our complex conditions that a merry song penetrates the field of work. The song has faded away, the song that joins the product!

We ask, is there another impulse, which can replace it? Let us look at the time when more and more factories were built and more and more human beings were herded together in the sites of modern misery. If we let all that pass by, we realise — even if many things have changed — that one means to attach the future development simply to the past, when joy and love were still the impulses of work. However, humanity could create no substitute that attaches the human being again to the product. This can also not brought back. However, something else can be done. What can replace it? How can joy and love become impulses of the daily work again? How can one create them?

Of course, some people will argue, create impulses for a work that is dirty, bad, and hideous! — There are such impulses. Remember only what mothers do if they do the work because of love for the child. Remember what the human being is able to do if he does anything because of love for other human beings. There is no love for the product of the work necessary; there it needs a tie between human being and human being. You cannot bring back the love for the product within humanity, because it was bound to primitive, simple relations. However, what the future must bring back is the big, all-embracing understanding and love from human being to human being. Not before any human being finds the impulse for his activity from the deepest impulses which only a spiritual world movement can give, not before he is able to do the work because of love for his fellow men, it is not possible to create real impulses for a future development in the sense of the human welfare.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 56 – Knowledge of Soul and Spirit: Lecture XI: Occupation and Earnings – Berlin, 12 March 1908

download

Picture / True being

Truth is, we never bring our real and inmost Ego with us from the spiritual world into the physical and earthly; we leave it in the spiritual world. Before we came down into earthly life it was in the spiritual world, and it is there again between our falling asleep and our awakening. It stays there always, and if by day — in the present form of human consciousness — we call ourselves an ‘I,’ this word is but an indication of something which is not here in the physical world at all; it only has its picture in this world.

We do not see ourselves aright if we say: ‘Here am I, this robust and real man, standing upon Earth; here am I with my inmost being.’ We only see ourselves aright if we say: ‘Our true being is in the spiritual world, and what is here of us on Earth is but a picture — an image of our true being.’ It is entirely true if we regard what is here on Earth, not as the real man himself, but as the picture of the real man.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 228 – MAN AS A PICTURE of the LIVING SPIRIT – London, 2nd September 1923

Translated by George Adams

Previously posted on April  26, 2019

Highly developed and, at the same time, colosally stupid

Through the perverse conditions of our modern culture we have reached the point where a man in his special subject can be a most highly developed being and, at the same time, colosally stupid where the great problems of man kind are concerned, understanding absolutely nothing about them. 

We have in our midst nowadays this curious phenomenon — that someone who has only passed through the primary school, and perhaps has not done this very satisfactorily, and has been dragged rather than brought up, has more sensible things to say about general human conditions than the man who has passed through higher education and excels in his own sphere. 

Today we must fight this phenomenon if we have any idea of sending into the depths those impulses which alone can bring improvement, impulses which do not lead merely to the superficial measures sought by those unwilling to take the path demanded by reality if anything is to happen. Naturally today we have let the evil go so far that we no longer have the personalities fit to build the foundations for a college of the kind, and are in the terrible situation of possessing no teachers for general human culture. 

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 192 – Social Basis For Primary and Secondary Education: Lecture III: Social Basis For Primary and Secondary Education – Stuttgart, 1 June, 1919

Intelligence-Stvenson

Harmful to mankind

Care must be taken that a certain knowledge is not placed at the service of one part of mankind, but at the service of mankind as a whole. As soon as man does not permeate the best knowledge with this sentiment it will become harmful to mankind.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 181 – Anthroposophical Life Gifts: Lecture IV: The Eternal and the Imperishable – Berlin, 9th April 1918

Previously posted on November 26, 2020

eNbtQQiY_400x400