Claptrap

Everything current philosophy says about soul and spirit is claptrap in mere phrases.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 192 – Geisteswissenschaftliche Behandlung sozialer und pädagogischer Fragen – Stuttgart, 6 July 1919 (page 268)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

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Why should we consider philosophy at all?

Why should we consider philosophy at all, because after all it only deals with the futile efforts of mankind? Well that is not the case, it really isn’t. What we achieve when we delve deeply into these viewpoints and futile struggles, is something irreplaceable  and infinitely meaningful. For to come to true knowledge of the immortal soul, for knowledge of the spiritual world and the Divine Beings,  philosophy will certainly always be barren, but she will not remain infertile regarding the development of certain other human faculties, for the development of certain human abilities.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 156 – Okkultes Lesen und okkultes Hören – Dornach 19 december 1914 (page 155-156)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

Previously posted on February 26, 2018

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AUGUSTE RODIN – THE THINKER

If students are apt to be bored

If students are apt to be bored by what they have to listen to in preparation for their medical studies, it is not the fault of the natural science but of those who expound it. We should never speak of science as “boring,” but rather of “boring” professors! Truly the fault does not lie with science, for science has undoubtedly good solid matter to offer. However God-forsaken are many of those who expound science to-day, science herself has the co-operation of good Spirits. 

When, however, we turn from these achievements of genuine and scholarly research and listen to what psychologists and philosophers have to say about the soul or the eternal part of man, we very soon realise that, apart from what has come from earlier traditions, it is all words, words, words, which lead nowhither. If out of the deepest needs of his soul a man turns to-day to psychology or philosophy, he will not merely be bored, he will find nothing whatever to answer his questions.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 231 – Supersensible Man: Lecture I – The Hague, 13th November 1923

Translated by Mary Adams

Previously posted on January 15, 2017

You can imagine what a difficult situation one is in, as representative of spiritual science

You can imagine what a difficult situation one is in as representative of spiritual science: One not only has the representatives of the religions against one, but also the whole philosophical world and their followers as well. Every Tom Dick or Harry then comes and says: Well, you claim this or that about the spiritual world; but after all, Kant has already proven – so they say – that nothing can be known about it! – This is actually the most generalizing objection that one can make. Someone can say: I do not want to hear anything that Steiner says, because Kant has already proven that nothing can be known about the Spiritual world.

Source (German): Rudolf Steiner – GA 353 – Die Geschichte der Menschheit und die Weltanschauungen der Kulturvölker – Dornach, May 14, 1924 (page 240)

Translated by Nesta Carsten-Krüger

Previously posted on May 28, 2018

The nineteenth century will one day be described as the most materialistic century in the history of humankind

The nineteenth century will one day be described as the materialistic century in the history of humankind. The people of the twentieth century cannot really imagine how deeply the nineteenth century was entangled in materialism. Only later when people have again become spiritual will that be possible. Everything, even the religious life, was permeated by materialism. Anyone who can look upon human evolution from higher planes knows that in the forties of the nineteenth century there was an extreme low point in the spiritual life. Science, philosophy, and religion were in the grip of materialism.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 104a – Reading the Pictures of the Apocalypse -Part 1 – Lecture Three – Munich, 8th May 1907

Translated by James H. Hindes

Previously posted on September 7, 2015