The effect of colours

Also the colours in the child’s surroundings are important. They exercise quite a different influence upon a small child than upon an adult. Many people think that green has a calming effect upon children. But this is quite wrong. A fidgety child should be surrounded with red and a calm child with green or blue-green. 

The effect of red upon the child is as follows: If you look upon a bright red and then turn your gaze away quickly to a piece of white paper you will see its complementary colour, which is green. … By this I mean to, illustrate the tendency which the eye has to produce the opposite colour. The child also attempts to do this; inwardly he seeks to unfold the activity which calls forth the counter-colour. This is an example showing how the environment can influence a child.

In a similar way the child is influenced by everything which surrounds it, in addition to many, many things which I shall explain later, in another connection. All this contributes to a very great extent to the development of the child’s physical body.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 100 – Theosophy and Rosicrucianism: Lecture V: Metamorphoses of Our Earthly Experiences in the Spiritual World – Kassel, 20th June 1907

Previously posted on September 23, 2016

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The effect of the spiritual knowledge on the character

The effect upon character is one of the most important results that can accrue from spiritual knowledge. Abstract intellectual knowledge is like an artificial root; it has been constructed by the intellect — no plant can grow from it. This is true of all the scientific knowledge that men respect and revere to-day, useful though it be, and by no means to be disparaged. From a real root grows a real plant; and from a real knowledge, whereby man can unite his spirit with the Spirits of the World, grows little by little the complete man who knows what true selflessness — selfless love — is, and what egoism is, and from this understanding derives impulses to act and work in life — the impulse, where it is right, to be selfless; or again, where he perhaps has need to draw forth something from his own being in preparation for life — there, openly, without any disguise, to develop egoism.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 231 – Spiritual Knowledge: A Way of Life – The Hague, 16th November 1923

Translated by Mary Adams

Prfeviously posted on August 30, 2016

Humanity is unaware of the influence of its emotions on the environment

It is not for nothing, not futile that the anthroposophical movement has reminded people of the invisible worlds, of which they are a part, on which they always exert influence. A person can’t utter one single word, can’t have a thought, without their feelings influencing the environment. In the same manner that our actions cause an effect in space, so do our emotions; they travel through space and influence people and the entire astral world.

Under ordinary circumstances, the human being is not aware that a stream of action goes out from him, that he is a cause whose effects can influence the environment. He is not aware that this can also cause harm, that he sends streams of sympathy and antipathy, of passions and desires into the world, which can work on other people in a very harmful way. He is unaware of what he is bringing about with his emotional life.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 88 – Über die astrale Welt und das Devachan – Berlin, October 28, 1903 (page 27)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

After death

When, after death, we go through our previous earthly life in reverse order, we feel the effects which our actions, will impulses, and thoughts had on other people as well as other creatures. During that period,  we do not feel what we have personally felt while in the physical body, but what we have caused other souls and other entities to feel.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 174b – Die geistigen Hintergründe des Ersten Weltkrieges –Dornach, March 15, 1916 (page 166)

Anonymous translator

Previously posted on June 9, 2017

Kind words have a direct effect on us

The kind words spoken to us have a direct effect on us, just as color affects our eyes directly. The love living in the other’s soul is borne into your soul on the wings of the words. This is direct perception; there can be no question here of interpretation. […] We live with the souls of others just as we live with colors and sounds. Anyone who does not realize this knows absolutely nothing of our inner life. It is very important to understand these things.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 169 – Toward Imagination: Lecture 3: The Twelve Human Senses – Berlin, 20th June 1916

Translated by Sabine H. Seiler