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Spiritual Science as a Foundation for Social Forms

Rudolf Steiner Archive & e.Lib Document

Sketch of Rudolf Steiner lecturing at the East-West Conference in Vienna.

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Spiritual Science as a Foundation for Social Forms

On-line since: 15th June, 2009


  1. Reference to Rudolf Steiner's return from Stuttgart where, from July 24 until August 1, 1920, he had been giving lectures for the teachers of the Waldorf School, for the general public and the Anthroposophical Society.
  2. The Waldorf School: Founded by Emil Molt (1876–1936) in the year 1919 for the children of the workmen in the “Waldorf-Astoria” cigarette factory and the public as a coeducational elementary and high school under the leadership of Rudolf Steiner, who had also appointed the teachers and had given them preparatory courses.
  3. Dr. Walter Johannes Stein: 1891–1957, Dr. Caroline van Heydebrandt: 1866–1938; both teachers in the Waldorf School from 1919.
  4. See Preface and Introduction to Goethe's Naturwissenschaftliche Schriften, edited by Rudolf Steiner. Introductions to all the volumes written by Rudolf Steiner under the same title, Dornach, 1926.
  5. Rudolf Steiner: “The Portal of Initiation” contained in Four Mystery Play, GA 14 (Toronto, Steiner Book Centre, 1973).
  6. “Stimmen der Zeit,” Freiburg i. Br., 1918–1920, Otto Zimmermann SJ, Josef Kreitmaier SJ, Konstantin Nopels SJ.
  7. Max Kully: 1878–1936, Catholic minister of Arlesheim near Basle. Reference to a calumnious article against Rudolf Steiner that he wrote in a Catholic Sunday paper, July 6, 1920.
  8. Rudolf Steiner: The Mission of the Folk-Souls, GA 121 (London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1970).
  9. Lenin: 1870–1924, founder and leader of Bolshevism; Trotski: 1879–1940, Lenin's closest associate.
  10. Rudolf Steiner: From Jesus to Christ, GA 131 (London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1973).
  11. Rudolf Steiner, Occult Science, an Outline, GA 13 (Spring Valley, Anthroposophic Press, 1972).
  12. Ludwig Buechner: 1824–1899, doctor of medicine; Jacob Moleschott: 1822–1893, physiologist; Carl Vogt: 1817–1895, zoologist.
  13. Rudolf Steiner: Towards Social Renewal, GA 23 (London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1977).
  14. Words by Pylades in Goethe's play, “Iphigenie auf Taurus.”
  15. Rudolf Steiner: Wisdom of Man, of the Soul, and of the Spirit, GA 115 (New York, Anthroposophic Press, 1971); Human and Cosmic Thought, Human and Cosmic Thought, GA 151 (London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1967); Kosmische und menschliche Geschichte, Vol. I and II, GA 170/171 (Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Verlag, 1964). Not translated.
  16. Rudolf Steiner: Knowledge of the Higher Worlds and Its Attainment, GA 10 (Spring Valley, Anthroposophic Press, 1983).
  17. Mechthild von Magdeburg: 1207–1290, mystic; St. Theresa, 1515–1582, Spanish saint; Johannes vom Kreuz (Juan de la Cruz): 1542–1591, mystic and theologian, reformer of the Carmelite Order; Meister Eckhart: 1260–1327, Dominican mystic; Johannes Tauler: 1300–1361, student of Meister Eckhart, mystic, Dominican preacher.
  18. Charles Webster Leadbeater: 1847–1934, prominent personality of the Theosophical Society.
  19. Oswald Spengler: 1880–1936, The Decline of the West, Munich, 1922.
  20. Dr. Roman Boos's descriptions, given on August 13, 1920, were not recorded. He reported orally on them to Dr. Steiner.
  21. Refers to a news report carried by the French, German and Swiss press, according to which the German Foreign Minister, Simons, had supposedly told a reporter of the “Impartial” that he was a follower of the reforms suggested by Rudolf Steiner (the threefold social organism). See, among others, “Basler Nachrichte,” 1920, #345, August 14, in which an article is quoted from the “Vossische Zeitung” of August 6. In the lecture of April 22, 1921, in answer to a particularly crude article in which Simons was described as “the favorite disciple of the Theosophist, Steiner,” Rudolf Steiner made the following comment: “In the weekly magazine which is primarily the mouthpiece of widespread public opinion, we note in the last issue that public sentiment was being worked up against Simons' policies. It goes without saying that neither anthroposophical spiritual science nor the threefold movement have anything to do with Simons' politics. It is out of a spirit of deep untruthfulness that anthroposphical spiritual science is lumped together with Simons' policies.”
  22. See Lecture III of this volume.
  23. See the lecture of March 18, 1920; printed in “Menschenschule,” Pamphlet 6, 1958.
  24. Hermann Grimm: 1828–1901, Goethe-Vorlesungen, Vol. 2, Berlin, 1877.
  25. This law was first proclaimed by Julius Robert Mayer (1814–1878), doctor and scientist. See Rudolf Steiner: Erdensterben und Weltenleben, GA 181, Lecture XII (not included in English translation of this cycle). Dornach, 1967.
  26. Adolf von Harnack: 1851–1930. The quotation literally says: “Not the Son, but only the Father belongs in the Gospel, as Jesus proclaimed it.” In Das Wesen des Christentums, Leipzig, 1900.
  27. Rudolf Steiner: “Durch den Geist zur Wirklichkeits-Erkenntnis der Menschenraetsel: Philosophie und Anthroposophie. Vier Maerchen (aus den Mysteriendramen). Anthroposophischer Seelenkalender. Der Seelen Erwachen, 7.u. 8. Bild,” Berlin, 1918. Compiled upon requests by friends and published in book-form for the German soldiers on the front.
  28. See Lecture III of this volume.
  29. See Note #4.
  30. See Lecture II of this volume.
  31. See Note #17.
  32. See lecture by Rudolf Steiner, “Urteilsbildung in den drei Gliedern des sozialen Organismus” in Gegenwart, 1950/51, #7 and 8/9. Not translated.
  33. Johann Gottlieb Fichte: 1762–1814. The quotation literally says: “The kind of philosophy one chooses depends ... on what kind of human being one is ... A philosophical system is not just a pile of inanimate household goods that one can either dispose of or accept any way one likes; it is ensouled by the soul of him who has it.” In “Erste und zweite Einleitung in die Wissenschaftslehre und Versuch einer neuen Darstellung der Wissenschaftslehre,” 1779.
  34. Rudolf Steiner: Spiritual Guidance of Man and Humanity, GA 15 (New York, Anthroposophic Press, 1970).
  35. Max Dessoir: 1867–1947. Compare this with Rudolf Steiner: Von Seelenraetseln, GA 20 (Dornach, 1960). Not translated.
  36. Hans Vaihinger: 1852–1933, Die Philosophie des Als-Ob. System der theoretischen, praktischen und religioesen Fiktionen der Menschheit auf Grund eines idealistischen Positivismus. Berlin, 1911.
  37. Wilhelm Jerusalem: 1842–1910, who in 1908 published a translation of Pragmatism by William James.
  38. Rudolf Steiner: Zeitgeschichtliche Betrachtungen, Part I, GA 173 (Dornach, Rudolf Steiner Verlag, 1966). Not translated.
  39. Appeared in “The Morning Post,” London, July 12–30, 1920. Also published in pamphlet form, The Causes of World Unrest, London, 1920.
  40. Bimetalism: The policy of using two metals (mostly gold and silver) jointly as a monetary standard. In most cases, replaced by the gold standard since the second half of the nineteenth century.
  41. Rudolf Steiner: Egyptian Myths and Mysteries, GA 106 (New York, Anthroposophic Press, 1971).
  42. See Note0 #4.
  43. Rudolf Steiner: Inner Nature of Man and the Life Between Death and a New Birth, GA 153 (London, Anthroposophical Publishing Co., 1959).
  44. Scotus Erigena: 810–877 A.D. Translator of the writings by Dionysius Areopagita; author of “De divina praedestinatione,” “ De divisione naturae.” In 1225, the Vatican ordered all his writings burned.
  45. See Note0 #13.
  46. Sophie Cheftele, “Les forces morales aux Etats-Unis (l'eglise, l'ecole, la femme),” Paris, 1920.
  47. The source of this quote could not be found.
  48. Rudolf Steiner: Oswald Spengler, Prophet of World Chaos, in GA 198 (New York, Anthroposophic Press, 1949).
  49. David Lloyd George: 1863–1945, British statesman, prime minister from 1916 until 1922.
  50. Eugene Clemenceau: 1841–1929, French statesman.
  51. Philipp Scheidemann: 1865–1939, German secretary of state, later minister president.
  52. Gerhart Hauptmann: 1862–1946, playwright; “Die Weber,” Berlin, 1892.
  53. Johann Gottlieb Fichte: Appellation an das Publikum ueber die ihm beigemessenen atheistischen Aeusserungen, 1799.
  54. Rabindranath Tagore: 1861–1941, Indian poet and religious philosopher.
  55. Francis Bacon: 1561–1626, English philosopher and statesman, founder of empiricism; Thomas Hobbes: 1588–1679, English philosopher; Adam Smith: 1723–1790, English philosopher and sociologist; John Stuart Mill: 1806–1873, English philosopher and political economist, one of the founders of positivism; Henry Thomas Buckle: 1821–1862, English writer on social history.
  56. David Hume: 1711–1776, English philosopher and statesman; John Locke: 1632–1704, English philosopher.
  57. Rudolf Steiner: The Riddles of Philosophy, GA 18 (New York, Anthroposophic Press, 1973).
  58. Mary Baker Eddy: 1821–1910, founder of Christian Science.
  59. Herbert Spencer: 1820–1903, English philosopher; Jeremy Bentham: 1748–1832, English Jurist, founder of philosophy of utilitarianism.
  60. Ralph Waldo Trine: 1866–1958, American author.
  61. Woodrow Wilson: 1856–1924, president of the USA from 1913 until 1921. In an address to Congress on January 8, 1918, he outlined a “Program of World Peace,” condensed in fourteen points.
  62. Prinz Max von Baden: 1866–1929, became German chancellor in the fall of 1918; on October 5, 1918, he directed a peace offer to President Wilson based on the latter's “Fourteen Points.”
  63. Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel: 1770–1831; complete edition of Hegel's works, Berlin, 1832–1844.
  64. Eduard von Hartmann, 1842–1906.
  65. Reference to Alfons Lehmen, SJ: 1847–1910, and his book Lehrbuch der Philosophie auf aristotelisch-scholastischer Grundlage, Vol. I, Freiburg i. Br., 1917. Compare with this the lecture of July 10, 1920, reprinted in “Blaetter fuer Anthroposophie,” September, 1953. Not translated.
  66. Heinrich Marianus Deinhardt: 1821–1879, “Beitraege zur Wuerdigung Schillers. Briefe ueber die aesthetische Erziehung des Menschen.” Published by G. Wachsmuth, Stuttgart, 1922.
  67. Orison Swett Marden: 1850–1924, American author.
  68. Reference to the first Course of the School of Spiritual Science at the Goetheanum from September 26 until October 16, 1920.
  69. Ludwig Graf von Polzer-Hoditz: 1869–1945; his lecture was later published under the title, “Der Kampf gegen den Geist und das Testament Peters des Grossen,” Stuttgart, 1922.
  70. Friedrich Wilhelm Schelling: 1775–1854.
  71. Friedrich Hoelderlin: 1770–1843.
  72. See Lecture IV of this volume.
  73. Karl Rosenkranz: 1805–1879, philosopher and literary historian. Hegel's Leben, Berlin, 1844.
  74. Rudolf Steiner: Der Baugedanke des Goetheanum, Gesamtausgabe Stuttgart, 1958.
  75. Literally, this sentence says: “What is rational, is real; and what is real is rational.” From preface to Hegel's Grundlinien der Philosophie des Rechts, 1821.
  76. Professor Paul Menzer: “Abbau der Universitaeten?” in “Hallische Nachrichten,” August 18, 1920.
  77. Ludwig Plate, 1862–1937.
  78. The Phyletic Museum of the University of Jena was founded in 1907, and according to its foundation-charter was "intended for the development and dissemination of the teaching of evolution as well as morphology and anthropology." Already in 1886, Ernst Haeckel had tried to realize the plan of the museum with the help of the so-called Ritter-Foundation, but had failed because of the Opposition of the donor, Paul von Ritter. It is quite possible that on the occasion of his sixtieth birthday, Haeckel talked about this planned museum in Dr. Steiner's presence. For Haeckel's birthday, his students and friends collected money for a marble bust. More money was collected than was needed. In 1894, this surplus of 10,000 marks still existed when the museum was established. It was then included in the capital of the foundation. In a footnote to a letter from Haeckel to Carneri on March 23, 1907, the publisher of the letters writes, “The construction of the Phyletic Museum in Jena was of great significance for the popularization of the teaching of evolution. For a long time, Haeckel had been envisioning such a ‘public-spirited center of education,’ namely, a collection ... in which the most pertinent facts of phylogeny would be suitably placed together, ... preparations, pictures and explanations would aid the public's understanding. The necessary fmancial means came together through donations.” Rudolf Steiner was aware of all these matters.
  79. Refers to the article by E.F.: “Haeckel und — Plate,” in the “Berliner Tageblatt,” evening edition of August 19, 1920.
  80. The writer of the article, E.F., bypasses the true facts with his report. Compare with this Heilborn's description on pp. 12 and 13 of his pamphlet, Die Lear-Tragoedie Ernst Haeckels: “One of Plate's first official actions after his move was the demand that Haeckel immediately clear out his study in the zoological institute. The elderly scientist was at that moment suffering from severe rheumatism. In order to be able to comply with Plate's request, Haeckel had to have himself carried into the institute ... This hasty move then took place in the custodian's and Haeckel's daughter's presence; a move that required the transport of letters, documents and books across to the Phyletic Museum. In two days, this was accomplished. Haeckel was just surveying his new workroom when the recently appointed director of the museum, Plate, appeared, announcing that he was requisitioning the„assistant's room for his ... 84 cages of live mice that he had brought with him ... for the purpose of genetic tests. Haeckel ... protested against this because of the unavoidable dirt and smell of such a breeding center and asked whether the mice couldn't be housed somewhere else in Jena besides the brand-new museum. Haeckel suggested ... a room in the zoological institute for this purpose. Plate, however, did not like this, because the foul smell would be too irksome for him in the adjacent laboratory. When Haeckel remarked that surely he had a voice in the matter of the arrangements in the Phyletic Museum, which was to serve purposes other than the raising of mice, especially since the museum had cost him two years of work and a great part of his own fmancial resources, Plate declared as if with the full weight of his office, ‘I am sole director of the Phyletic Museum since April 1 and you have to submit to all my orders without exception.’ A bitter exchange of words ensued and the elderly Haeckel finally said, ‘You treat me like an assistant who is twenty years younger, not like your teacher who is thirty years older!’ Plate left without a word ... This was the first tribute of gratitude on the part of the ‘sincerely devoted old pupil’ and the first expression of his ‘special joy over furnishing the museum together with Haeckel according to the latter's intentions!’”
  81. Ottokar Lorenz: 1832–1904, Austrian historian.
  82. Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche: 1844–1900.
  83. See Note0 #9.
  84. See Lecture VII of this volume.
  85. See Note0 #54.
  86. Thomas Huxley: 1825–1895.
  87. Friedrich Hegel: Grundlinien einer Philosophie des Rechts, 1821.
  88. Johann Gottlieb Fichte: Grundlage des Naturrechts, 1796.
  89. A.W. Lunatsharsky: 1875–1933, Russian author and politician.
  90. In Matthew 24:35; Mark 13:31; Luke 16:17.
  91. Thomas Aquinas: 1226–1274; compare Rudolf Steiner: The Redemption of Thinking, GA 74 (Spring Valley, Anthroposophie Press, 1983).
  92. Erich Ludendorff: 1865–1937, German general.
  93. Alexander Helphand, died in 1924, Russian socialist, for a time a political refugee in Germany. He played an important role in bringing about the Bolshevic revolution as well as the peace of Brest-Litovsk (1918).
  94. Ernest Haeckel: Anthropogenie oder Entwicklungsgeschichte des Menschen, Leipzig, 1891, p. 871.
  95. Max Christlieb: 1862–1916.
  96. In “Soziale Zukunft,” #5–7, Dornach, 1920.
  97. Rudolf Steiner: Spiritual Science and Medicine, GA 312 (London, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1948).
  98. Goethe: Tasso I, 2.
  99. See Note #90.
  100. See Note #24.
  101. William James: 1842–1910. American psychologist and philosopher.
  102. See Note #36.
  103. The second part is unknown.

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