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Rudolf Steiner Archive Section Name Rudolf Steiner Archive & e.Lib

The Universal Human

Rudolf Steiner Archive & e.Lib Document

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

Religion/Spiritual Science



The Evolution of Individuality

In these four lectures Rudolf Steiner addresses the evolutionary task facing contemporary humanity, particularly with regard to issues of race and racial conflict. He describes the origins of racial diversity among human beings and vividly describes the dangers of the ever-widening chasm separating different peoples. To avert this threat of the fragmentation of our species, we must strive for an awareness of ourselves and others as spiritual beings with a unique and individual karma.

In the past, human souls felt a strong connection, even union, with the “group soul” — the race or nation — to which they belonged. Today, all such group soul characteristics must be stripped off. Therefore, as Steiner writes. “it is necessary that the anthroposophical movement, in preparing for the sixth epoch, should shed the character of race and seek to unite people of all ‘races’ and ‘nations.’”

That such an inward, spiritual uniting of all human beings in their common humanity can now come about is the fruit of the cosmic sacrifice of the Mystery of Golgotha — which made possible a universal human community of I-beings. From this point of view, as Steiner makes clear in the last lecture, Christ's deed was for the renewal of the common spiritual humanity of all peoples and races, divided in the course of human evolution by the work of Lucifer and Ahriman.

RUDOLF STEINER (1861–1925), philosopher, scholar, scientist, and educator. was the founder of Anthroposophy, a modern spiritual path or science. Out of his spiritual researches, he was able to provide indications for the renewal of many human activities, including education (the Waldorf Schools), agriculture (Biodynamics), medicine (Anthroposophical Medicine), special education (the Camphill Movement), economics, philosophy, and religion. In 1924, he founded the General Anthroposophical Society, which today has branches throughout the world.

Cover art: “Representative of Humanity (detail)” from “The wooden Group,” sculpture by Rudolf Steiner, reproduced by courtesy of the Philosophisch-Anthroposophischer Verlag am Goetheanum, Switzerland.

Cover design: Mary Giddens and Barbara Richey

ISBN 0-88010-289-6


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