Fanaticism is the worst thing in the world

Fanaticism is the worst thing in the world, particularly in education, — a fanaticism which makes a man press on in one direction and push ahead regardless of anything but his one aim, reduced to precise slogans.

But if one looks at the world, without prejudice one will concede: views and opinions are but views and opinions. If I have a tree here and photograph it, I have one view of it; the view from here has a definite form; but the view is different from here, and again different from over there; so that you might think it was not the same tree if you only had the pictures to go by. In the same way there are points of view in the world, there are outlooks. Each one only regards one aspect of things. If you know that things must be looked upon from the most manifold standpoints you avoid fanaticism and dwell in many-sidedness, in a universality.

Source: GA 305 – Spiritual Ground of Education: Lecture IX: The Teachers of the Waldorf School – 25th August, 1922 | Oxford

Translated by Daphne Harwood

Previously posted on September 28, 2013

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