"Because spiritual science, in communicating spiritual truths, does not teach morals, but gives a basis for practical morality, it will build a bridge leading into the spiritual world for the man of to-day. It may well be that those who stand at the apex of our present culture, the leading personalities in industry and learning, those who have the greatest influence, will smile at these small conventicles of spiritual science, and also at all that is investigated here. But let them think what they like! At one time there was also a mighty world of Roman culture that ancient, imperial Rome, the ruins of which we still admire. In the ancient gigantic Coliseum incense was burned to drown the smell of flesh which arose where the Christians had been torn to pieces by wild beasts. That was ancient Rome, above, in the daylight. And below? Let us descend into the catacombs! There we find the first followers of Christianity, of the Mystery of Golgotha, persecuted and despised. There below, hidden away, they worship Christ; there they perform their symbolic rituals. Down there the first Christian communities are founded. Although small in number and despised, they never doubt. Down below a little flock, despised and outcast; up above, a mighty throng who have great influence. Yet a few centuries later ancient Rome has disappeared; and those who were there below, in the under-world, have ascended. In the same way spiritual science will ascend in a few centuries, will rise above industry, learning, and the various concerns of humanity to-day. Yet if, in your little conventicles, you compare yourselves with those of subterranean Rome, do so, not with a feeling of pride, but with humility. And if you picture to yourselves how the brilliant science of our present day will melt away before spiritual science, then picture this to yourselves in humility only. If you take this feeling with you and carry it with you from this hour, so that it always remains alive within your souls, you will help to spread universal human love, and you will enter into a new culture.
I call upon all the good spiritual forces that they may watch over this newly-founded Group, and may help you to attain your goal and facilitate your work."
from The Dedication of an