The dead are perpetually working into our physical world

You must remind yourselves that as well as living through his life here between birth and death, man passes again and again through the life between death and a new birth. Just as here on earth we have experiences through the instrumentality of our body, we also have experiences between death and a new birth, and these experiences are by no means without significance for what we do during our earthly existence in the physical body. But neither are they without significance for what happens on earth as a whole.

For only part — and indeed the rather lesser part — of what happens on the earth originates from those who are living in the physical body. The dead are perpetually working into our physical world. The forces of which man is unwilling to speak to-day in the age of materialism are nevertheless at work in the physical world. Our physical environment is fashioned and permeated not only by the forces emanating from the spiritual world, from the Beings of the higher Hierarchies, but forces proceeding from the dead also penetrate into what surrounds and overtakes us here. So that a full and complete survey of man’s life is possible only if we look beyond what can be told us by knowledge obtained through the senses and through history, here on earth.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 196 – Some Conditions for Understanding Supersensible Experiences – Dornach, 18th January 1920

The modern materialistic world conception is a product of fear and anxiety

The age of intellectualism dulled the sight of what lay in man’s inner being, but it was unable to do away with the fear. It thus came about that man was and still is under the influence of this unconscious fear to the degree of saying, “There is nothing at all in the human being that transcends birth and death.” He is afraid of penetrating deeper than this life of memory, this ordinary life of thought, which maintains its legitimacy, after all, only between birth and death. He is afraid to look down into what is actually eternal in the human soul, and from this fear he postulates the doctrine that there is nothing at all outside this life between birth and death. Modern materialism has arisen out of fear, without having the least intimation of this. The modern materialistic world conception is a product of fear and anxiety.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 207 – Cosmosophy 1: Lecture I – Dornach, September  23, 1921

Previously posted on January 18, 2014

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Painting by Nataliya Gurevich