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Lectures from the Golden Blade, 1962

Golden Blade, 1962: Lecture 2: Paths to the Spirit in East and West

Paths to the Spirit in East and West

The second of the two lectures described above (page 1)

[From a shorthand report, unrevised by the lecturer. Published by permission of the Rudolf Steiner-Nachlassverwaltung, Dornach, Switzerland.]

R u d o l f   S t e i n e r


Y

ESTERDAY I tried to show the methods used by Eastern spirituality for approaching the super-sensible world. I pointed out how anybody who wished to follow this path into the super-sensible more or less dispensed with the bridge linking him with his fellows. He preferred to avoid the communication with other human beings that is established by speaking, thinking and ego-perception. I showed how the attempt was first of all made not to hear and understand through the word what another person wished to say, but actually to live in the words themselves. This process of living-in-the-word was enhanced by forming the words into certain aphorisms. One lived in these and repeated them, so that the soul forces acquired by thus living in the words were further strengthened by repetition.

I showed how in this way a soul-condition was attained that we might call a state of Inspiration, in the sense in which I have used the word. What distinguished the sages of the ancient Eastern world was that they were true to their race; conscious individuality was far less developed with them than it came to be in later stages of human evolution. This meant that their penetration of the spiritual world was a more or less instinctive process. Because the whole thing was instinctive and to some extent the product of a healthy human impulse, it could not in ancient times lead to the pathological disturbances of which we have also spoken. In later times steps were taken by the so-called Mystery centres to guard against such disturbances as I have tried to describe to you. What I said was that those in the West, who wish to come to grips with the spiritual world, must attempt things in a different way.

Mankind has progressed since the days of which I was speaking. Other soul forces have emerged, so that it is not simply a matter of breathing new life into the ancient Eastern way of spiritual development. A reactionary harking back to the spiritual life of prehistoric times or of man's early historical development is impossible. For the Western world, the way of initiation into the super-sensible world is through Imagination. But Imagination must be integrated organically with our spiritual life as a whole. This can come about in the most varied ways: as it did, after all, in the East. There, too, the way was not determined unequivocally in advance. To-day I should like to describe a way of initiation that conforms to the needs of Western civilisation and is particularly well suited to anyone who is immersed in the scientific life of the West.

*

In my book, Knowledge of the Higher Worlds, I have described a sure path to the super-sensible. But this book has a fairly general appeal and is not specially suited to the requirements of someone with a definite scientific training. The path of initiation which I wish to describe to-day is specifically designed for the scientist. All my experience tells me that for such a man the way of knowledge must be based on what I have set out in The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity. I will explain what I mean by this.

This book, The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity, was not written with the objects in mind that are customary when writing books to-day. Nowadays people write simply in order to inform the reader of the subject-matter of the book, so that he learns what the book contains in accordance with his education, his scientific training or the special knowledge he already possesses. This was not basically my intention in writing The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity. For this reason it will not be popular with those who read books only to acquire information. The purpose of the book is to make the reader use his own processes of thought on every page, In a sense the book is only a kind of musical score, to be read with inward thought-activity in order to be able of oneself to advance from one thought to the next. This book constantly expects the reader to co-operate by thinking for himself.

Moreover, what happens to the soul of the reader, when he makes this effort of co-operation in thought, is also to be considered. Anybody who works through this book and brings his thought-activity to bear on it will admit to gaining a measure of self-comprehension in an element of his soul-life where this had been lacking. If he cannot do this, he is not reading The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity in the right way. He should feel how he is being lifted out of his usual concepts into thoughts which are independent of his sense-life and in which his whole existence is merged. He should be able to feel how this kind of thinking has freed him from dependence on the bodily state. Anyone who denies experiencing this has fundamentally misunderstood the book. It should be more or less possible to say: “Now I know through what I have achieved in the thought-activity of my soul what true thinking really is.”

The strange thing is that most Western philosophers utterly deny the reality of the very thing that my Philosophy of Spiritual Activity seeks to awaken in the soul of the reader. Countless philosophers have expounded the view that pure thinking does not exist, but is bound to contain traces, however diluted, of sense-perception. A strong impression is left that philosophers who maintain this have never really studied mathematics, or gone into the difference between analytical and empirical mechanics. The degree of specialisation required to-day will alone account for the fact that a great deal of philosophising goes on nowadays without the remotest understanding of mathematical thinking. Philosophy is fundamentally impossible without a grasp of at least the spirit of mathematical thinking. Goethe's attitude to this has been noticed, even though he made no claim himself to any special training in mathematics. Many would deny the existence of the very faculty which I should like readers of The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity to acquire.

Let us imagine a reader who simply sets about working through The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity within the framework of his ordinary consciousness in the way I have just described. He will not of course be able to claim that he has been transported into a super-sensible world; for I intentionally wrote this book in the way I did so as to present people with a work of pure philosophy. Just consider what advantage it would have been to anthroposophically orientated science if I had written works of spiritual science from the start. They would of course have been disregarded by all trained philosophers as the amateurish efforts of a dilettante. To begin with I had to concentrate on pure philosophy: I had to present the world with something thought out in pure philosophical terms, even though it transcended the normal bounds of philosophy.

However, at some point the transition had to be made from pure philosophy and science to writing about spiritual science. This occurred at a time when I had been asked to write about Goethe's scientific works, and this was followed by an invitation to write one particular chapter in a German biography of Goethe that was about to appear. It was in the late 1890's and the chapter was to be concerned with Goethe's scientific works. I had actually written it and sent it to the publisher when another work of mine came out, called Mysticism at the Dawn of the Modern Age. This book was a link between pure philosophy and philosophy based on Anthroposophy. When this came out, my other manuscript was returned to me. Nothing was enclosed apart from my fee, the idea being that any claim I might make had thus been met. Among the learned pedants there obviously was no interest in anything written — not even a single chapter devoted to the development of Goethe's attitude to natural science — by one who had indulged in such mysticism.

I will now assume that The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity has already been studied with one's ordinary consciousness in the way I have suggested. We are now in the right frame of mind to guide our souls in the direction briefly indicated yesterday — along the first steps of the way leading to Imagination. It is possible to pursue this path in a form consonant with Western life if we simply try to surrender ourselves completely to the world of outer phenomena, so that we absorb them without thinking about them. In ordinary waking life, you will agree, we are constantly perceiving, but in the very act of doing so we are always permeating out perceptions with concepts. Scientific thinking involves a systematic interweaving of perceptions with concepts, building up systems of concepts and so on. In acquiring a capacity for the kind of thinking that gradually results from reading The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity, we become capable of such strong inner activity that we are able to perceive without conceptualising.

There is something further we can do to strengthen our soul-forces so that we are enabled to absorb perceptions in the way I have just described: that is, by refraining from elaborating them with concepts in the very act of absorbing them. We can call up symbolic or other kinds of images — visual images, sound images, images of warmth, taste, and so on. If we thus bring our activity of perception into a state of flux, as it were, and infuse it with life and movement, not in the way we follow when forming concepts, but by working on our perceptions in an artistic or symbolising manner, we shall develop much sooner the power of allowing the percepts to permeate us in their pure essence. Simply to train ourselves rigorously in what I have called phenomenalism — that is, in elaborating the phenomena — is an excellent preparation for this kind of cognition. If we have really striven to reach the material boundaries of cognition — if we have not lazily looked beyond the veil of sense for metaphysical explanations in terms of atoms and molecules, but have used concepts to set in order the phenomena and to follow them through to their archetypes — then we have already undergone a training which can enable us to keep all conceptional activity away from the phenomena. And if at the same time we turn the phenomena into symbols and images, we shall acquire such strength of soul as to be able, one might say, to absorb the outer world free from concepts.

Obviously we cannot expect to achieve this all at once. Spiritual research demands far more of us than research in a laboratory or observatory. Above all an intense effort of will is required. For a time we should strive to concentrate on a symbolic picture, and occupy ourselves with the images that arise, leaving them undisturbed by phenomena present in the soul. Otherwise they will disappear as we hurry through life from sensation to sensation and from experience to experience. We should accustom ourselves to contemplating at least one such image — whether of our own creation or suggested by somebody else — for longer and longer periods. We should penetrate to its very core, concentrating on it beyond the possibility of being influenced by mere memory. If we do all this, and keep repeating the process, we can strengthen our soul forces and finally become aware of an inner experience, of which formerly we had not the remotest inkling.

Finally — it is important not to misunderstand what I am going to say — it is possible to form a picture of something experienced only in our inner being, if we recall especially lively dream-pictures, so long as they derive from memories and do not relate directly to anything external, and are thus a sort of reaction stemming from within ourselves. If we experience these images in their fullest depth, we have a very real experience; and the point is reached when we meet within ourselves the spiritual element which actuates the processes of growth. We meet the power of growth itself. Contact is established with a part of our human make-up which we formerly experienced only unconsciously, but which is nevertheless active within us. What do I mean by “experienced unconsciously?”

Now I have told you how from birth until the change of teeth a spiritual soul force works on and through the human being; and after this it more or less detaches itself. Later, between the change of teeth and maturity, it immerses itself, so to speak, in the physical body, awakening the erotic impulse — and much else besides. All this happens unconsciously. But if we consciously use such soul-activities as I have described in order to observe how the qualities of soul and spirit can penetrate our physical make-up, we begin to see how these processes work in a human being, and how from the time of his birth he is given over to the external world. Nowadays this relation to the outer world is regarded as amounting to nothing more than abstract perception or abstract knowledge. This is not so. We are surrounded by a world of colour, sound and warmth and by all kinds of sensory impressions. As our thinking gets to work on them, our whole being receives yet further impressions. When unconscious experiences of childhood come to be experienced consciously, we even find that, while we were absorbing colour and sound impressions unconsciously, they were working spiritually upon us. When, between the change of teeth and maturity, erotic feelings make their first impact, they do not simply grow out of our constitution but come to meet us from the cosmos in rays of colour, sound and warmth.

But warmth, light and sound are not to be understood in a merely physical sense. Through our sensory impressions we are conscious only of what I might call outer sound and outer colour. And when we thus surrender ourselves to nature, we do not encounter the ether-waves, atoms and so on which are imagined by modern physics and physiology. Spiritual forces are at work in the physical world; forces which between birth and death fashion us into the human beings we are.

When once we tread the paths of knowledge which I have described, we become aware of the fact that it is the outer world which forms us. As we become clearly conscious of spirit in the outer world, we are able to experience consciously the living forces at work in our bodies. It is phenomenology itself that reveals to us so clearly the existence of spirit in the outer world. It is the observation of phenomena, and not abstract metaphysics, that brings the spiritual to our notice, if we make a point of observing consciously what we would otherwise tend to do unconsciously; if we notice how through the sense-world spiritual powers enter into our being and work formatively upon it.

Yesterday I pointed out to you that the Eastern sage virtually ignores the significance of speech, thought and ego-perception. His attitude towards these activities is different, for speech, perception of thoughts and ego-perception tend at first to lead us away from the spiritual world into social contact with other human beings. We buy our way into social life, as it were, by exposing our thoughts, our speech and our ego-perception and making them communicable. The Eastern sage lived in the word and resigned himself to the fact that it could not be communicated. He felt the same about his thoughts; he lived in his thinking, and so on. In the West we are more inclined to cast a backward glance at humanity as we follow the path into the super-sensible world.

*

At this point it is well to remember that man has a certain kind of sensory organisation within him. I have already described the three inner senses through which he becomes aware of his inner being, just as he perceives what goes on around him. We have a sense of balance, which tells us of the space we occupy as human beings and within whose limits our wills can function. We have a sense of movement, which tells us, even in the dark, that we are moving. This knowledge comes from within and is not derived from contact with outside objects that we may touch in passing. We have a “sense of life,” through which we are aware of our general state of health, or, one might say, of our constantly changing inward condition.

It is just in the first seven years of our life that these three inner senses work in conjunction with the will. We are guided by our sense of balance: and a being that, to begin with, cannot move about and later on can only crawl, is transformed into one that can stand upright and walk. When we learn to walk upright, we are coming to grips with the world. This is possible only because of our sense of balance. Similarly, our sense of movement and our sense of life contribute to our development as integrated human beings.

Anybody able to apply laboratory standards of objective observation to the study of man's development — spirit-soul as well as physical — will soon discover how those forces that form the human being and are especially active in the first seven years free themselves and begin to assume a different aspect from the time of the change of teeth. By this time a person is less intimately connected with his inner life than he was as a child. A child is closely bound up inwardly with human equilibrium, movement and processes of life. As emancipation from them gradually occurs, something else is developing. A certain adjustment is taking place to the three senses of smell, taste and touch.

A detailed observation of the way a child comes to grips with life is extraordinarily interesting. This can be seen most obviously, of course, in early life, but anybody trained to do so can see it clearly enough later on as well. I refer to the process of orientation made possible by the senses of smell, of taste and of touch. The child in a manner expels from himself the forces of equilibrium, movement and life and, while he is so doing, draws into him the qualitative senses of smell, taste and touch. Over a fairly long period the former are, so to speak, being breathed out and the latter breathed in; so that the two trinities encounter each other within our organism — the forces of equilibrium, movement and life pushing their way outward from within, while smell, taste and touch, which point us to qualities, are pressing inwards from without. These two trinities of sense interpenetrate each other; and it is through this interpenetration that the human being first comes to realise himself as a true self.

Now we are cut off from outer spirituality by speech and by our faculties of perceiving the thoughts and perceiving the egos of others — and rightly so, for if it were otherwise we could never in this physical life grow into social beings. [See previous lecture.] In precisely the same way, inasmuch as the qualities of smell, taste and touch wax counter to equilibrium, movement and life, we are inwardly cut off from the last three — which would otherwise disclose themselves to us directly. One could say that the sensations of smell, taste and touch form a barricade in front of the sensations of balance, movement and life and prevent our experiencing them.

What is the result of that development towards Imagination of which I spoke? It is this. The oriental stops short at speech in order to live in it; stops at thought in order to live in it; stops at ego-perception in order to live in it; and by these means makes his way outward into the spiritual world. We, as the result of developing Imagination, do something similar when we absorb the external percept without conceptualising it. But the direction we take in doing this is the opposite to the direction taken by an oriental who practises restraint in the matter of speech, thought-perception and ego-perception. He stays still in these. He lives his way into them. The aspirant to Imagination, on the other hand, worms his way inward through smell, taste and perception; he penetrates inward and, ignoring the importunities of his sensations of smell, taste and touch, makes contact with the experiences of equilibrium, movement and life.

It is a great moment when we have penetrated the sensory trinity, as I have called it, of taste, smell and touch, and we stand naked, as it were, before essential movement, equilibrium and life.

*

Having thus prepared the ground, it is interesting to study what it is that Western mysticism so often has to offer. Most certainly, I am very far from decrying the elements of poetry, beauty and imaginative expression in many mystical writings. Most certainly I admire what, for instance, St. Theresa, Mechthild of Magdeburg and others have to tell us, and indeed Meister Eckhardt and Johannes Tauler; but all this reveals itself also to the true spiritual scientist. It is what arises if one follows an inward path without penetrating through the domain of smell, taste and touch. Read what has been written by individuals who have described with particular clarity what they have experienced in this way. They speak of an inner sense of taste, experienced in connection with the soul-spiritual element in man's inner being. They refer also to smell and touch in a special way. Anybody, for instance, who reads Mechthild of Magdeburg or St. Theresa rightly will see that they follow this inward path, but never penetrate right through smell, taste and touch. They use beautiful poetic imagery for their descriptions, but they are speaking only of how one can smell, taste and touch oneself inwardly.

It is indeed less agreeable to see the true nature of reality with spiritually developed senses than to read the accounts given by a sensual mysticism — the only term for it — which fundamentally gratifies only a refined inward-looking egotism of soul. As I say, much as this mysticism is to be admired — and I do admire it — the true spiritual scientist has to realise that it stops half-way. What is manifest in the splendid poetic imagery of Mechthild of Magdeburg, St. Theresa and others is really only what is smelt, tasted and touched before attaining to true inwardness.

Truth can be unpleasant, perhaps even cruel, at times. But modern man has no business to become rickety in soul through following a vague incomplete mysticism. What is required to-day is to penetrate the true mysteries of man's inner nature with all our intellectual powers — with the same powers that we have disciplined in the cause of science and used to effect in the outer world. There is no mistaking what science is. It is respected for the very method and discipline it demands. It is when we have learnt to be scientific that we appreciate the achievements of a vague mysticism at their true worth but we also discover that they are not what spiritual science has to foster. On the contrary, the task of spiritual science is to reveal clearly the true nature of man's being. This in turn makes possible a sound understanding of the outer world.

Instead of speaking in this way, as the truth demands of me, I could be claiming the support of every vague, woolly mystic, who goes in for mysticism to satisfy the inward appetite of his soul. That is not our concern here, but rather the discovery of powers that can be used for living; spiritual powers that are capable of informing our scientific and social life.

When we have come to grips with the forces that dwell in our senses of balance, life and movement, then we have reached something that is first of all experienced through its transparency as man's essential inward being. The very nature of the thing shows us clearly that we cannot penetrate any deeper. What we do find is quite enough to be going on with, for what we discover is not the stuff of vague mystical dreams but a genuine organology. Above all, we find within ourselves the true nature of balance and movement, and of the stream of life. We find this within ourselves.

When this experience is complete, something unique has taken place. In due course we discover something. An essential prerequisite is, as I have said, to have worked carefully through The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity. The Philosophy is then left, so to speak, on one side, while we pursue the inward path of contemplation and meditation. We have advanced as far as balance, movement and life. We live in this life, balance and movement. Parallel with our pursuit of the way of contemplation and meditation, but without any other activity on our part, our thinking in connection with The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity has undergone a transformation. We have been able to experience as pure thought what a philosophy such as this has to offer; but now that we have worked upon ourselves in another sphere, our inner soul life; this has turned into something quite different. It has taken on new dimensions and is now much more full of meaning. While on the one hand we have been penetrating our inward being and have deepened our power of Imagination, we have also lifted out of the ordinary level of consciousness the fruits of our thinking on The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity. Thoughts which formerly had a more or less abstract existence in the realm of pure cerebration have now become significant forces. They are now alive in our consciousness, and what was once pure thinking has become Inspiration. We have developed Imagination; and thinking has been transformed into Inspiration.

What we have attained by these two methods in our progress along this road has to be clearly differentiated. On the one hand we have gained Inspiration from what was, to begin with, pure thought. On the other hand, there is the experience that comes to us through our senses of balance, movement and life. We are now in a position to unite the two forms of experience, the outer and the inner. The fusion of Inspiration and Imagination brings us to Intuition.

*

What have we accomplished now? I can answer this question by approaching it from the other side. First of all I must draw attention to the steps taken by the Oriental seer, who wishes to advance further after being trained in the mantras and experiencing the living word and language. He now learns to experience not only the rhythms of language but also, and in a sense consciously, the process of breathing. He has, as it were, to undergo an artificial kind of breathing by varying it in all kinds of ways. For him this is one step up; but this is not something to be taken over in its entirety by the West.

What does the Eastern student of yoga attain by consciously regulating his breathing in a variety of ways? He experiences something very remarkable when he breathes in. As he does so, he is brought into contact with a quality of air that is not to be found when we experience air as a purely physical substance, but only when we unite ourselves with the air and so experience it spiritually. A genuine student of yoga, as he breathes in, experiences something that works upon his whole being, an activity that is not completed in this life and does not end with death. The spiritual quality of the outer air enters our being and engenders in us something that goes with us through the gate of death. To experience the breathing process consciously means taking part in something that continues when we have laid aside our bodies. To experience consciously the process of breathing is to experience both the reaction of our inner being to the drawing in of breath and the activities of our soul-spiritual being before birth: or let us say rather that we experience our conception and the factors that contribute to our embryonic development and work on us further within our organism as children. Breathing consciously means realising our own identity on the far side of birth and death. Advancing from the experience of the word and of language to that of breathing means penetrating further into an inspired realisation of the eternal in man. We Westerners have to experience much the same — but in a different sphere.

What in fact is the process of perception? It is only a modification of the breathing process. As we breathe in, the air presses on our diaphragm and on our whole being. Brain fluid is driven up through our spinal column into our brain. This establishes a connection between breathing and cerebral activity. Breathing, in so far as it influences the brain, works upon our sense-activity in the form of perception. Drawing in breath has various sides to it, and one of these is perception.

How is it when we breathe out? Brain fluid descends and exerts pressure on the circulation of the blood. The descent of brain fluid is bound up with the activity of will and also with breathing out. Anybody who really makes a study of The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity will discover that when we attain to pure thinking, a fusion of thinking and willing takes place. Pure thinking is fundamentally an expression of will. So it comes about that what we have characterised as pure thinking is related to what the Easterner experiences in the process of breathing out.

Pure thinking is related to breathing out, just as perception is related to breathing in. We have to go through the same process as the yogi, but in a more inward form. Yoga depends on the regulation of breathing, both in and out, and in this way comes into contact with the eternal in man. What should Western man do? He can transform into soul-experience both perception on the one hand and thinking on the other. He can unite in his inner experience perception and thinking, which would otherwise only come quietly together in a formal abstract way, so that he has the same experience inwardly in his soul and spirit as he has physically in breathing in and out. Breathing in and out are physical experiences. When they are harmonised, we experience the eternal.

We experience thought-perception in our everyday lives. As we bring movement into our soul life, we become aware of rhythm, of the swing of the pendulum, of the constant movement to and fro of perception and thinking. Higher realities are experienced in the East by breathing in and out. The Westerner develops a kind of breathing process in his soul and spirit, in place of the physical breathing of yoga, when he develops within himself, through perception, the vital process of transformed in-breathing and, through thinking, that of out-breathing; and fuses concept, thought and perception into a harmonious whole. Gradually, with the beat of this rhythmical breathing process in perception and thinking, his development advances to true spiritual reality in the form of Imagination, Inspiration and Intuition.

In my Philosophy of Spiritual Activity I indicated as a philosophical fact that reality is the product of the interpenetration of perception and thinking. Since this book was designed to deal with man's soul activity, some indication should also be given of the training that Western man needs if he is to penetrate the spiritual world. The Easterner speaks of the systole and diastole, breathing in and out. In place of these terms Western man should put perception and thinking. Where the Oriental speaks of the development of physical breathing, we in the West say: development of soul-spiritual breathing in the course of cognition through perception and thinking.

*

All this should perhaps be contrasted with the kind of blind alley reached by Western spiritual development. Let me explain what I mean. In 1841 Michelet, the Berlin philosopher, published Hegel's posthumous works of natural philosophy. Hegel had worked at the end of the eighteenth century, together with Schelling, at laying the foundations of a system of natural philosophy. Schelling, with the enthusiasm of youth, had built his natural philosophy in a remarkable way on what he called intellectual contemplation. But he reached a point where he could make no further progress. His immersion in mysticism produced splendid results in his work, Bruno, or concerning the Divine and Natural Principle in Things, and that fine piece of writing, Human Freedom, or the Origin of Evil. But for all this he could make no progress and began to hold back from expressing himself at all. He kept promising to follow things up with a philosophy that would reveal the true nature of those hidden forces at which his earlier natural philosophy had only hinted.

When Hegel's natural philosophy appeared in 1841, through Michelet, the position was that Schelling's expected and oft-promised philosophical revelations had still not been vouchsafed to the public. He was summoned to Berlin. But what he had to offer contained no spiritual qualities to permeate the natural philosophy he had founded. He had struggled to create an intellectual picture of the world. He stood still at this point, because he was unable to use Imagination to enter the sphere of which I have been speaking to you to-day. So there he was at a dead end.

Hegel, who had a more rational intellect, had taken over Schelling's thoughts and carried them further by applying pure thinking to the observation of nature. That was the origin of Hegel's natural philosophy. So Schelling's promise to explain nature in spiritual terms was never fulfilled, and we got Hegel's natural philosophy which was to be discarded by science in the second half of the nineteenth century. It was not understood and was bound to remain so, for there was no connection between phenomenology, or the true observation of nature, and the ideas contained in Hegel's natural philosophy. It was a strange confrontation: Schelling travelling from Munich to Berlin, where something great was expected of him, and it turned out that he had nothing to say. This was a disappointment for all those who believed that through Hegel's natural philosophy revelations about nature would emerge from pure thinking. The historical fact is that Schelling reached the stage of intellectual contemplation but not that of genuine Imagination; while Hegel showed that if pure thinking does not lead on to Imagination, it cannot lead to Inspiration and to an understanding of nature's secrets. This line of Western development had terminated in a blind alley.

There was nothing — nothing permeated with the spirit — to set against Eastern teaching, which only engendered scepticism in the West. Anyone who has lovingly immersed himself in the true Schelling and Hegel, and has thus been able to see, with love in his heart, the limitations of Western philosophy, should turn his attention to Anthroposophy. He should work to bring about an anthroposophically orientated Spiritual Science for the West, so that we come to possess something of spiritual origin to compare with what the East has created through the interaction of systole and diastole.

For us in the West, there is the spiritual-soul rhythm of perception and thinking, through which we can rise to something more than a merely abstract science. It opens the way to a living science, which on that account enables us to live in harmony with truth. After all the misfires of the Kantian, Schellingian and Hegelian philosophies, we have come to the point where we need something that can show, by revealing the way of the spirit, how truth and science are related. The truth that dwells in a spiritualised science would be a healing power in the future development of mankind.

Translated by J. N. and C. W.




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