Re: Koetzsch's Anthroposophy 101
Sep 04, 2006 09:08 PDT
Dan Dugan wrote:
10) The incarnation of the Christ, a divine being intimately connected
to the Father God, in the human being, Jesus of Nazareth, in Palestine
2000 years ago, was a unique and pivotal event in human history. At a
point when the adversarial forces threatened to overwhelm humanity,
the suffering, death on the cross, resurrection, and ascension of
Christ Jesus made possible the continued spiritual development of the
human being and of the Earth. Despite this important Christological
element, however, Anthroposophy is not a church, a religious sect or
denomination, and is not connected to any. The resurrection forces of
the cosmic Christ have been and are still today available to all human
beings, regardless of culture, religion, nationality, or ethnic group.
*** end quoted text
Koetzsch comments that these ideas are "part of the foundation of
Waldorf Education." "One need not subscribe to this view, but
understanding it will perhaps help one comprehend Waldorf Education
within its larger context."
The ringer sentence is in No. 10: "Despite this important
Christological element, however, Anthroposophy is not a church, a
religious sect or denomination, and is not connected to any." After
the refreshingly clear explanation of the beliefs of a group that
couldn't, after reading the above, be categorized as anything other
than a religious sect, why was it necessary to make a flat-out
contradiction? It's unfortunate that Koetzsch felt he had to repeat
the traditional Anthroposophical denial.
Koetzsch is close to joining Eugene Schwartz in a pantheon of heroes
of the coming-out of Anthroposophy in the 21st century.
What you like to overlook Dan, is number 6), quoted next below, which is
true, and which then undercuts all your assertions to the contrary. It
is here, of course, where the discourse* concerning "Steiner's racial
theories" must begin if it is to be at all intelligent.
[*see discussion of discourse and debate below]
"6) Part of our individual and collective human task at this stage in
history is to rediscover, as something intimately experienced and known,
the spiritual dimension of reality. Every human being has the potential,
though conscious striving and self-discipline, to directly perceive and
experience the spiritual world."
Previously on this list, I have laboriously explained again and again,
that it is possible (and often probable) that many in Waldorf and the
Anthroposophical Movement take this world view described above and put
it in their souls in the place where religion often resides. Many
others do not. Most of those within the Anthroposophical Movement are a
mix, a very human mix, of belief and knowledge.
Steiner did not do this (as do many of his students), and for this
reason was able to put Anthroposophy forward as something quite distinct
What is sad in this regard, and with respect to this list, is that few
here will admit that their relationship to Scientific Materialism and/or
Secular Humanism is the same. That is to say that many in Western
culture, several of whom write to this list, take the scientific
paradigm and place that in their souls in the place religion used to
occupy, such that they too have a mixture of belief and knowledge.
This mixture of belief and knowledge is ever present as well in public
schools. But since so many in Western culture are in denial of the fact
that scientific theory is itself a belief system, it is a common
hypocrisy to hold that which speaks of the spirit, or of religion, as
somehow less than the religion of Scientism.
This is nothing new historically, for there is always in any culture
(modern Western culture included) a paradigm or world view that
considers itself superior to all others. In point of fact, the only
real difference today is that some many such paradigms seem to compete
with each other. If we look deeper, we will find that it is precisely
those questions which science avoids trying to answer (or so says Peter
F.) which makes for the trouble, for the deepest yearnings of the soul
are for meaning, and Scientific Materialism has pretty much driven the
questions of human beings regarding these deeper meanings out of the
For example, there are people today (such as HBO's Bill Maher) who
denigrate anyone who finds problems with what should technically be
known as neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory. Maher is an excellent
example of someone who has never really carefully thought about the
problem and who is unfamiliar with the science, yet holds to the belief
that human beings are descended from apes, and that the world is the
outcome of blind chance.
Many scientists play this game as if no one actually questions their
views - that is they will appear and tell the story that there is no
discussion going on anywhere that conflicts with their evolutionary
views, except for some Christian fringe. So someone like Maher, a true
believer in evolution, will pronounce that no one with a rational mind
could disagree with the theory.
For any member of the list with an open mind, here is a good place to
http://www.natureinstitute.org/txt/rb/dogma/dogmadoubt.htm and this
website as well:
Now before those who are waiting to pounce on the above, and insert all
manner of why Wendt is wrong statements into the above do so, they
should know I could care less. During the time I have been silent for
the last several days, I've been reviewing what goes on here and come to
the conclusion that this is actually not a place of discourse, although
it does give a semblance of being a place of debate.
In discourse there would be respect for the different points of view,
and a desire to exchange views in such a way that one or another member
of the discourse might change their mind and/or learn something new. In
a debate, the sides are already taken, and one simply presents one's
reasons for one's view, and then the other debaters offer their reasons.
Yet, the reason I say there is here only a semblance of debate, is
because it is closer to the truth to see that much of what is said
amounts to claims the other guy (or girl) doesn't know what they are
talking about. That is not debate, it is simply an assertion, which if
repeted with enough frequency and intensity amounts to little more than
an word fight in a school yard on the order of: yes you are, no I'm not,
yes you are, no I'm not - etc. etc. etc.
Such activity is pointless, although I have observed here, especially
after I seemed to quit the field of battle, several self congradulatory
interchanges, as if the claims that Wendt is wrong become more true or
more real if the collective mind here comes to agreement that this is so.
The truth, however, is never a matter of popularity or vote. For
example, that "leading scientists agree", a statement often seen in the
press, means nothing more than the idea that the priests of scientism
have a shared set of dogmas, and do not properly practice that aspect of
the discipline connected to doubt. Would that even a bit of such a mode
of operation penetrate into this aethereal space - what a breath of
fresh air would arise. Alas, here on this list are a collection of
folks who like to act as if they know everything about natural science,
philosophy, medicine farming, social life, history and Waldorf and
Anthroposophy, and shame on (kick them off the list for talking about
the person instead of the theme being lamely debated at the level of ten
year olds) anyone who suggests that such a view is a great and dangerous
Unfortunately, the same level of hubris often exists within the
Anthroposophical Movement, such that the true believers here on this
list and apt companions for the true believers there - all brothers and
sisters of "don't bother me with facts, or real thinking, my mind is
already made up". In that, however, all are just human, for we are all
quite far from realizing our true human potential - all struggling and
striving human beings, finding ourselves on apparently opposite sides of
matters and questions of meaning connected to the deepest places of our
I look forward to the day we graduate from the school yard and actually
learn how to have a respectful and shared discourse as striving
journeyman thinkers with much to learn from each other.