The materialistic world-conception may not be true, but for all that it contains an inner truth. Of this inner truth it can be said: What the materialistic world-conception describes regarding man would become actual fact if this world-conception were to gain the day. And it lies with men by means of a different world-conception, to prevent this materialism from being victorious.
The matter is not so simple as to enable it to be said that the materialistic world-conception is false; the point is that it lies in the hands of men to gain the victory over it through deeds, not through feeble thoughts of refutation. The more men there are who open their eyes to the spiritual world, the more there will be who realise that the fulfilment of materialism can be frustrated and the greater will be the possibility of frustrating it.
Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 254 – Significant Facts Pertaining to the Spiritual Life of the Middle of the XIXth Century: Lecture III – Dornach, 7th November 1915
Translated by Dorothy S. Osmond