I will give you an example to show how absurdly a person may err when he judges merely by externals. He might say: ‘I know of a man who was a great adherent of the anthroposophical conceptions. Now the Anthroposophists declare that health is always improved by their teachings and even that life is prolonged by them. Fine teaching this! The man died at forty-three!’ So much they know: that he dies at forty-three; they have seen it. But how much do they not know? They do not know the age at which the man would have died had he known nothing of Anthroposophy. Perhaps, without Anthroposophy, he might have died at forty! If the span of a man’s life reaches to his fortieth year without Anthroposophy, it may very well extend to his forty-third with Anthroposophy. Inasmuch as Anthroposophy penetrates into life, its effects will also show themselves in life.
Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 112 – The Gospel of St. John – Lecture VII – Cassel, 30th June 1909
Previously posted on 5th January 2014