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the scholar teaches class.....

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  • Tarjei Straume
    Last week, Walden and Staudenmaier were discussing a message of mine to this list on PLANS list, in a thread entitled talking about us:
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 13, 2003
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      Last week, Walden and Staudenmaier were discussing a message of mine to
      this list on PLANS' list, in a thread entitled "talking about us:

      Re: talking about us [] Peter Staudenmaier
      [] Dec 07, 2003 11:06 PST

      Hi again Walden, you wrote in your other posts:

      "Why would Tarjei say something that is factually incorrect? I have been
      reading this list for a couple of years now and I have not heard Peter
      always insist that anthroposophy is a fascist right wing ideology. Nor have
      I heard anthroposophists characterized as such. The anthroposophists I know
      personally are definitely NOT right of centre."

      I think the problem here is mixing up specifc statements with general
      statements. When I write that many German, Swiss, and Austrian
      anthroposophists in the 1920's and 1930's shared a number of right-wing
      beliefs, some latter-day anthroposophists think I am saying that all
      anthroposophists everywhere and at all times have been rightwingers. While
      there are certainly right-wing anthroposophists today, including a number
      of neo-fascist anthroposophists (mostly followers of Werner Haverbeck, the
      most important post-war far-right anthroposophist), it appears that most
      contemporary anthroposophists in the contexts that I know well, including
      Germany and the United States, are more or less liberal or left-leaning.


      Staudenmaier is subtle. I did some checking, including the exchanges I had
      with him on the WC in June-August 2001, and he has not spelled out that
      anthroposophists are generally right wingers. I did confront him with
      statistics in 2001, however, showing that the voting record among Norwegian
      anthroposophists is overwhelmingly left wing. To the best of my
      recollection, Peter Staudenmaier and Peter Zegers disputed this on the
      ground that they did not have access to verification, and Peter S. argued
      against the relevance of statistics.

      But there are obviously anthroposophical fascists and right wingers. I was
      recently confronted with this on Starman's list, where I was even denied
      freedom of speech because politics is declared off-topic. But Starman and
      some of his sidekicks did express some disturbingly hawkish views and made
      it clear that liberal and left wing are dirty words. And Starman's major
      argument to make aggressive militarism compatible with anthroposophy is
      extremely foggy: He argues that because Steiner endorsed the Baghavad Gita
      (which is supposedly pro-Pentagon?), he must have favored war. (I wonder
      what Gandhi would have made of this bullshit.)

      Peter Staudenmaier openly claims to be a historian:

      "I experience this a lot, especially with other historians."

      Someone ought to call this pompous bluff of his. No historian practices
      libellous propaganda with an agenda to destroy a movement. And where are
      the history books he has written?

      Staudenmaier ponders:

      I stumbled on something today which lit a light bulb here at Walden Pond.
      This one sentence by Tarjei from his web site (who is monitoring this list)
      might well be the missing link I so very much wanted to find. Here's the
      deal: One person views history as, well... history in the mainstream sense
      while the other views it as occultism. Tarjei, from his site:

      "...I told Peter Staudenmaier that the roots of anthroposophy are to be
      found in the spiritual world, and that in order to understand this
      properly, an occult conception of historical events must be taken into

      Yes, that is one of several factors that make it virtually impossible for
      anthroposophists who share this view to understand what I write about their


      On the contrary: This is one of several factors that make it so much
      easiere for anthroposophists to recognize the utter falsehood of
      Staudenmaier's outrageous allegations. The history of ideas must be seen in
      the light of ideas, and spiritual impulses must be viewed in the context of
      spiritual influences. If such ideas and influences are assumed to be
      illusions arising from chemical processes in the brain, hallucinations and
      the like, and spiritual history is nothing but anthro-babble and gibberish,
      a charletan playing "historian" will be staring at an empty void.


      Staudenmaier continues:

      "There is no such thing as "an occult conception of historical events", and
      even if there were, historians would be obligated to disregard it as
      incompatible with scholarly methods."

      A subjective opinion presented as an objective fact.

      "The most capable scholarly analysts of occult movements, from
      Goodrick-Clarke to Webb to Godwin to Gardell, carefully avoid taking
      occultist narratives at face value, particularly regarding historical

      No wonder Staudenmaier was so ill at ease about me having read
      Goodrick-Clarke and Webb when researching my 1996 article about
      Nazi-occultism that he claimed later (long after I had unsubscribed from
      the WC for the last time) that I was lying about having read
      Goodrick-Clarke! This is what I commented on my website at
      http://www.uncletaz.com/peterbull.html which Peter S. is referring to. My
      original WC post about the occult history of anthroposophy can be picked up
      at http://www.uncletaz.com/aproots.html

      And here comes a beauty from Peter S:

      "I take it then, that facts, dates, etc. are of little importance when
      history is studied with an "occult conception of historical events.""

      Facts and dates are of utmost importance in occult history, but the
      spiritual events behind such external phenomena are added. This shows where
      Staudenmaier's homework needs some improvement.

      Tarjei Straume

      "The worst readers are those who proceed like plundering soldiers:
      they pick up a few things they use, soil and confuse the rest,
      and blaspheme the whole." - Friedrich Nietzsche, Mixed Opinions and Maxims
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