These twenty lectures of Dr. Steiner's on Spiritual Science and
Medicine were given at the request of a number of practicing Doctors
in Medicine. Some thirty doctors and students attended.
The lectures took the form of answers to questions handed to the
lecturer at the time, which accounts for their somewhat loose
construction. Dr. Steiner's invariable method was rather to stimulate
the mental and spiritual faculties of his listeners than merely to give
information. In these lectures his aim was not to submit hypotheses,
but to lead his listeners to medical, therapeutic intuition.
The following quotation taken from two lectures given by Dr. Steiner
on “Anthroposophical Medical Research” in London may stand as an
“Some three thousand years ago, during the flowering of the most
ancient Greek culture, there existed schools that were very different
from those of today. The basis of these ancient schools consisted in
the belief that man had first of all to develop new faculties in his
soul before he could become capable of attaining to true knowledge
“Now it was just because, in these ancient times, the more primitive
soul-faculties did not incline towards the dreamy and visionary, that
it was possible to experience, in the so-called mysteries, the
spiritual foundations from which all forms of learning arose.
“This state of things came to an end more or less contemporaneously
with the founding of our Universities — during the twelfth,
thirteenth, and fourteenth centuries. Since that time we learn only in
a rationalistic way. Rationalism leads on the one hand to keen logic,
and on the other hand to pure materialism.
“During the course of the last few centuries a vast store of external
knowledge has been accumulated in the domain of biology, physiology,
and other branches of research which are introductory to the study of
medicine; indeed an amazing mass of observations, out of which an
almost immeasurable amount may yet be obtained!
“But during these centuries all knowledge connected with man which
could only be gained with spiritual vision, sank completely out of
“It has therefore become actually impossible to investigate the true
nature of health and disease.
“In order to emphasise this remark, I may mention that even at the
present time (according to the descriptions given in my books) it is
possible so to raise the faculties of the soul that the spiritual
nature of man may be clearly distinguished from the physical. This
spiritual part of man is, for the spiritual observer, just as visible
as the physical part is for the man who observes with his outer
senses; with this difference, however, that our ordinary senses have
been and are incorporated into our bodily organism without our
co-operation, whereas we must ourselves develop the organs of
RUDOLF STEINER — London 1924.