What claims to be “humble” or “simple” today is often supreme arrogance

More and more generally it is being said that people should steep themselves in the very simplicity of the Gospels and not attempt to understand the Mystery of Golgotha by entering into the complexities of spiritual science. Those who feign unpretentiousness in their study of the Gospels are the most arrogant of all, for they despise the honest search for knowledge demanded in spiritual science. So arrogant are they that they believe the highest revelations of the spiritual world can be garnered without effort, simply by browsing on the simplicity of the Gospels. What claims to be “humble” or “simple” today is often supreme arrogance. In sects, in religious confessions — it is there that the most arrogant people are to be found.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 193 – Influences of Lucifer/Ahriman: Lecture Three – Bern – 4th November, 1919

Translated by Dorothy S. Osmond

Previously posted on March 13, 2018


Lack of humility is due to nothing else than lack of knowledge

Lack of humility is due to nothing else than lack of knowledge. A penetrating, comprehensive knowledge of man in his connection with the events of the world and of history will certainly not lead to excessive self-esteem; far rather it will lead the human being to look at himself objectively. It is precisely when a man does not know himself that there rise up in him those feelings which have their source in the unknown regions of his being. Instinctive, emotional impulses make themselves felt. And it is these instinctive, emotional impulses, rooted as they are in the subconscious, that make for arrogance and pride.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 236 – Karmic Relationships: Esoteric Studies – Volume II – Dornach, 23rd April 1924

Translated by G. Adams, M. Cotterell, C. Davy, & D. S. Osmond

humility word in mixed vintage metal type printing blocks over g

Previously posted on April 25, 2018

Some think modern science will bring all the truth  

When we look out into the world today we see something that has already been there for many years: a tremendous amount of destructiveness. There are forces at work that give us an inkling of the abysses into which western civilization is still to plunge. Looking at those individuals who externally are the cultural leaders in the various fields of life, we notice how they are enmeshed in a terrible cosmic sleep. They think, and until recently most people thought, that until the nineteenth century mankind was childlike and primitive in its insights and views, and that now that modern science has entered into all the various fields truth has at last arrived, truth that must be upheld forever.

People who think like this are, without knowing it, living in a state of tremendous arrogance. On the other hand, here and there amongst mankind today there are some inklings that things are perhaps not as the majority would like to imagine.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 260 – The Christmas Conference- Part Two: The Procedings of the Conference – Dornach, 1st January 1924

Translated by Johanna Collis

Previously posted on March 19, 2016


There is no greater arrogance than to say that one only needs to be a good person, and then everything is in order. After all, one must first know how to do it; how to really be a good person.  Rejecting wisdom, with our present-day consciousness, would be a sign of great arrogance. True understanding of what is good requires that we intrude deeply into the secrets of wisdom. That would of course be inconvenient because we would have to learn much. 

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA-number unknown

Anonymous translator

Previously posted on December 29, 2017


Not the person who does not know anything about the higher worlds can determine whether it exists or not, but he who actually has knowledge about it. [….] The spiritual researcher says nobody can decide what another person may or may not know, but each can only decide for him- or herself what he/she knows. […] It is alleged that Anthroposophy leads to spiritual arrogance, because it claims that it has access to knowledge that rises above ordinary knowledge. But just the opposite is true. There is no greater pride than that which would decide not only about what he doesn’t know, but even would decide on what human beings may or may not know. The real pride is actually expressed in that which defines itself as the norm for all people.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 56 – Die Erkenntnis der Seele und des Geistes – Berlin, October 10, 1907 (page 18)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

Previously posted on April 11, 2017