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Rudolf Steiner Archive

Calendar of the Soul

Northern Hemisphere
Week 36

Within my being's depths there speaks,
Intent on revelation,
The cosmic Word mysteriously:
Imbue your labor's aims
With my bright spirit light
To sacrifice yourself through me.

Southern Hemisphere
Week 10

To summer's radiant heights
The sun in shining majesty ascends;
It takes my human feeling
Into its own wide realms of space.
Within my inner being stirs
Presentiment which heralds dimly,
You shall in future know:
A godly being now has touched you.

—Translation by Ruth and Hans Pusch

See GA 40 for full calendar and German text.

The Fall of the Spirits of Darkness
GA 177

Description of Contents

Lecture 1

Dornach, 29 September 1917
Insight into the events taking place in Russia at the time. Metaphysical world influencing current events. Suchomlinov's failure as a sign of the times. Papal Peace Note. Connection between materialistic attitudes and powers of destruction.

Lecture 2

Dornach, 30 September 1917
Discrepancy between intellectual and moral development. The human organization in sleep and in the waking state. Wisdom-filled impulses projecting from the realm of sleep into everyday life. The spiritual and social impulse in the works of Johann Valentin Andreae. Humanity getting younger, with Lloyd George as typical representative of his time.

Lecture 3

Dornach, 1 October 1917
Present habits of thinking not in accord with reality. The Christ's words: ‘My kingdom is not of this world.’ Search for perfection is materialistic illusion — Woodrow Wilson as ‘saviour of the world’. Right attitude to the truths of spiritual science when these are made known — deviations from this. Two measures which had become necessary with regard to private interviews.

Lecture 4

Dornach, 6 October 1917
The elemental spirits of birth and death. Their activity in the service of the gods. Rule over these spirits passing into human hands — a similar process in ancient Atlantis. Inevitable transformation of virtues into faults, and of constructive powers into destructive ones. Ricarda Huch instinctively aware of this. A modern tendency: to take a stance rather than go through the effort of finding the truth.

Lecture 5

Dornach, 7 October 1917
Changes in the way the environment is experienced from ancient Greece to the present time. Earth dying and bodies withering away, these facts reflected in Eduard Suess's geological work and in Franz Brentano's psychology. Inner life of man separating from physical body. Augustine's and Calvin's dogma of predestination. Eugenics as an echo of Atlantean practices. Psychopathology as a sign of the times. Medicines used to ‘get rid of the spirit’.

Lecture 6

Dornach, 8 October 1917
Living world of thought around us and dead thoughts within us. The head as a legacy from old incarnations of the earth — rest of the body as manifestations of cosmic hierarchies condensed by luciferic influences. Spiritual bonds with environment and interpretation of dreams during fourth postAtlantean epoch. Need for inspired ideas on social aspects — Jacob Boehme and Saint-Martin aware of this. Importance of intuitive and prophetic faculties for teaching profession.

Lecture 7

Dornach, 12 October 1917
Lack of ‘weight’ in the usual historical texts. Luther as someone belonging to the fourth epoch who lived at the beginning of the fifth. Consciousness awakened on account of deception in the past. Need to overcome illusion in future. Trial by fire as part of the inner path today. Significance of karma concept in education. Harmful nature of premature intellectual development. Right attitude to those who hold different views. Relationship between teacher and pupil as an inner relationship.

Lecture 8

Dornach, 13 October 1917
Present desire to find simple, unified concepts. Inadequacy of such concepts in the face of reality. Rudolf Kjellen's and Albert Schaeffle's analogy between organism and State not acceptable. Social life of the whole earth as an organism. Abstract theories refuted by reality. West looking to the past. Wilsonianism. East breaking with the past. Abstract nature of theosophical ideals and the need for genuine knowledge.

Lecture 9

Dornach, 14 October 1917
Battle between the Archangel Michael and the ahrimanic powers from 1841 until the autumn of 1879. Fall of the spirits of darkness and its consequences: individual people taking hold of materialistic impulses — statement made by Henri Lichtenberger as symptomatic of this. Bacterial diseases and Moon influences as consequences of similar battles in earlier periods of earth evolution. Examples of ahrimanic way of thinking in modern science. Influence of spiritual world on actions of people today. Mirroring of events in the world of the spirit in this world. Soloviev and perception of the Russian folk spirit.

Lecture 10

Dornach, 20 October 1917
Many ideals far removed from reality. Certain ideas spread in the eighteenth century and their consequences. Wilhelm Weber's Dreizehnlinden. Prejudice, ignorance and fear helping the ahrimanic powers. Modern science studying the past, and ;the need to gain perception of what lies in the future. James Dewar's views as example of inadequacy of views held at the time. Activity of ahrimanic spirits in monistic theories. Need to bring spiritual thinking into physical sciences. Need to transform education. Significance of happy childhood memories for adult life.

Lecture 11

Dornach, 21 October 1917
Growing inwardness of inner life — science-based civilization becoming more external. New impulses in education to counteract ahrimanization of inner life. Relationship of humans and animals to Sun and Moon currents. Thoughtfully told tales based on animal and plant world as an educational necessity — partly achieved in Brehm's work. Impoverishment of ideas through specialization. Example of a genuine connection made between impulses to observe given in spiritual science and a specialist field: Roman Boos' book on the Collective Agreement. A valuable essay by Boos contrasted with empty phrases used in another essay in the same issue of the journal Wissen und Leben.

Lecture 12

Dornach, 26 October 1917
Spirits of darkness cast down, and this the cause of events which happened at the time. Mission of spirits of light in earlier epochs of earth evolution: promotion of blood bonds; mission of powers of darkness: to free human beings from those bonds — the situation reversed in nineteenth century. Darwinism as an impulse from the past; Goethe's theory of metamorphosis as a power for the future. Human beings tied to the earth through heredity, getting free of the earth by becoming spiritual. Indianization of Europeans living in America and the way to overcome this tendency.

Lecture 13

Dornach, 27 October 1917
The intentions of the spirits of darkness: greatest possible development of human acumen and limiting human relationship to the spirit to spiritistic methods. Michael's victory provides possibility for human beings to connect with the spirit — counteraction from spirits of darkness. Events in nineteenth century as consequences of the battle in the world of the spirit. Oswald Marbach and Goethe's Faust. Woodrow Wilson as ‘world schoolmaster’. Goethe's achievement brought to expression in a poem by Marbach.

Lecture 14

Dornach, 28 October 1917
Angels and Archangels and their role in history and in the human organism. Physical reproduction to cease in the sixth or seventh millennium. Aims of spirits of darkness in relation to humanity growing younger. Fritz Mauthner and Darwinism. Discrepancy between life of thought and life of will — its effect on modern social democracy. Relative newness of history as a science and need to bring in the life forces of anthroposophy. Maeterlinck's book on bees. Illusory talk of democracy. Francis Delaisi on democracy and world of finance. Alexandre Millerand and Raymond Poincar as examples of financial concerns influencing political activities.

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