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Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Book for an elder

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  • Michael Howell
    Dottie Perhaps this. Anthroposophy 101 The current issue of *Renewal: A Journal for Waldorf Education* [Spring/Summer 2006, Vol. 15 No. 1] includes an
    Message 1 of 104 , Sep 4, 2006
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      Dottie
       
      Perhaps this.
       


      Anthroposophy 101

      The current issue of *Renewal: A Journal for Waldorf Education*
      [Spring/Summer 2006, Vol. 15 No. 1] includes an extraordinary
      editorial column by Ronald Koetzsch, PhD. He tells about his stand-up
      comedy routine "The Beeswax Conspiracy" that he performs at Waldorf
      schools. His show includes his "five-minute introduction to the basic
      ideas of Spiritual Science" that he calls "Anthroposophy 101." He
      publishes it for the first time in the column.

      Anthroposophy is notoriously difficult to pin down. You won't find a
      creed anywhere. Everything is in 40 books and 6000 lectures by Rudolf
      Steiner, but it isn't organized, and in any given lecture Steiner
      jumps around from topic to topic. Anthroposophists are rarely able to
      give a short or even truthful answer to a direct question about their
      world-view.

      Koetzsch has done the public a great service by summarizing the
      doctrine succinctly. With the exception of one contradictory sentence
      (see below), this summary should be given to every parent who
      expresses interest in Waldorf.

      *** quoted text follows

      1) Behind every material phenomenon and process, even those that
      appear inert and lifeless, is a spiritual reality with consciousness,
      thought, and intention. We live in a conscious universe. This
      spiritual dimension of reality is primary and creative and the
      material manifestation derivative. Spirit survives the transformation
      and disappearance of the material. This is a counterpoise to the
      materialistic view of the primacy of matter.

      2) The invisible, spiritual world comprises a multiplicity of beings.
      These include: the elemental spirits that ensoul the phenomena and
      processes of the natural world; the group souls of the minerals,
      plants, and animals; the souls of the so-called dead--human beings
      who are in the life between death and rebirth; the folk souls of
      different ethnic and national groups; and the nine celestial
      heirarchies--from the angels and archangels up through the cherubim
      and seraphim. The hierarchies are manifestations of attributes of a
      single creator God, but are also independent beings.

      3) The human being is a creation of the celestial hierarchies. With
      conscious intent and out of self-sacrificial love, they have created
      the human being and the world as a manifestation of cosmic wisdom.
      The human being is the crowning jewel of the creation. The entire
      universe has been brought into being so that the human being might
      come into existence. We are not the chance product of an impersonal,
      mechanistic evolutionary process.

      4) The human being, in fact the entire cosmos, is a work in progress.
      The aeons-long, divinely guided process of creation and development
      is still going on and will go on indefinitely into the future.

      5) Each individual human being is going through his own unique
      history and spiritual development. This individual destiny is
      realized over multiple earthly incarnations. Each human individuality
      has an undying spiritual essence that incarnates or takes on human
      form in different cultures at successive points in history. One's
      circumstances and personality in one life are largely determined by
      one's karma, the carried-over effects of one's decisions and deeds in
      former lives.

      6) Part of our individual and collective human task at this stage in
      history is to rediscover, as something intimately experienced and
      known, the spiritual dimension of reality. Every human being has the
      potential, though conscious striving and self-discipline, to directly
      perceive and experience the spiritual world.

      7) Another part of our task is to become able to act in freedom and
      out of selfless love for other beings.

      8) Human culture needs to be transformed according to a spiritual
      vision of the human being. Every domain of human thought and
      activity--education, medicine, agriculture, social, economic and
      political life, art, architecture, religious life, care for the
      elderly, and so on--must be renewed on the basis of a spiritual
      understanding of the human being. Only if we do this will the
      development of humanity and of the Earth continue in a positive way.

      9) Among the myriad spiritual beings, there are certain powerful
      entities who oppose the divine plan. In other words, there are "bad
      guys" out there as well as "good guys," and the former are very
      skilled at drawing people away from the path of development intended
      by the higher spiritual beings, away from the realization of freedom
      and love. These adversarial powers are necessary, however, because
      without evil there would be no choice for human beings and hence no
      true freedom.

      10) The incarnation of the Christ, a divine being intimately
      connected to the Father God, in the human being, Jesus of Nazareth,
      in Palestine 2000 years ago, was a unique and pivotal event in human
      history. At a point when the adversarial forces threatened to
      overwhelm humanity, the suffering, death on the cross, resurrection,
      and ascension of Christ Jesus made possible the continued spiritual
      development of the human being and of the Earth. Despite this
      important Christological element, however, Anthroposophy is not a
      church, a religious sect or denomination, and is not connected to
      any. The resurrection forces of the cosmic Christ have been and are
      still today available to all human beings, regardless of culture,
      religion, nationality, or ethnic group.

      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Tuesday, September 05, 2006 10:30 AM
      Subject: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Book for an elder


      Hey Friends,

      My 81 year old neighbor and his 91 year old best
      friend are interested in learning about Rudolf Steiner
      and what his thoughts are in regards to God and
      Christ.

      The 91 year old is at an important transition in his
      life and he is starting to be afraid of not knowing
      what is before him once he leaves this life. He's a
      bit of a dogmatic person from what I hear but it seems
      that he's starting to want to know more than what
      Catholism can give him at this late time in the game.
      My 81 year old neighbor is a little frustrated with
      his worries but he finds himself interested in Rudolf
      Steiner because his friend is.

      They came across him because my wonderful neighbor who
      needs to know everything that is going on in his
      neighborhood came across one of my fliers sitting on
      my desk at work. He showed his friend and the rest is
      history as they say. So now both men went to their
      dictionaries and then to their encyclopedias and came
      back with the variety of words used to describe Rudolf
      Steiner and they both want to know more. They want the
      literature from the conference and I am thinking it is
      difficult for one who has not familiarized himself
      with the terminology of astral, etheric and so forth.

      So, I am wondering if one has a book in mind they
      might reccomend for them. I was reading How To Know
      Higher Worlds and I thought that this might be okay as
      it kind of walks one through it little by little. But
      then I was thinking 'what does a 91 year old man not
      need to contemplate at this late date'? As he is
      contemplating his life I am concerned he might think
      'oh God, I'm screwed'. Both are gay men with a flare
      for drama and the 91 year old is a bit depressed due
      to not having a sense what might be waiting for him on
      the other side.

      So, any thoughts on a book that might be encouraging
      and thoughtful about what awaits us once we cross
      over. I was thinking I would give him my Paramahnsa
      Yoganandas' book on being a Yogi.

      It's interesting for me to watch my neighbor watch me
      hem and haw about what book and the conference
      lectures. They have both saved the flier from the
      conference as well. I showed him my Autobiography of
      Rudolf Steiner and he raised his finger and his eye
      brow, pursing his lips and nods his head: hmmmm.

      Isn't it interesting to be around people who start to
      be a bit honest about not knowing if there is anything
      past this life? And then choosing the words that allow
      them to find out for themselves through study versus
      telling them what is what according to my
      understanding: )

      Thanks for any help,
      Dottie

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    • oealan
      ... I am not sure if I want to read on :( :( Love Adrian ... Hello Adrian. Personally, between translations and the time period, I wouldn t put any merit to
      Message 104 of 104 , Sep 13, 2006
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        >>> Having children `at our disposal for demonstration'!!!!!

        I am not sure if I want to read on :( :(

        Love Adrian

        -------

        Hello Adrian. Personally, between translations and the time period, I
        wouldn't put any merit to the words "at our disposal". Could be as
        well you're simply not interested in reading on, which is fine of
        course.


        alan
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