September 21, 1920
As you are well aware, it is often said today that spiritual science cannot have anything to do with real knowledge, with genuine perception, and that it can only be a matter of faith, a subjective way of believing things to be true. This kind of attitude then leads to a distinction being made between knowledge and belief, as is the general custom. A frequent objection raised against spiritual science working towards anthroposophy is that a kind of subjective knowledge that really can only be a matter of belief — perhaps one should not even call it knowledge but merely the subjective belief that something is true — is to be elevated, jumped up, to the level of certain and exact knowledge, to the level of a genuine science.
This distinction that is made between science and belief is quite a recent development. The view is that science should only concern itself with things perceptible to the senses, or at most with things that can be established and explored on the basis of experiments, and that certain knowledge can solely and exclusively come from such depths. Belief is seen as going beyond the physical realm and it is said that one should never assume that anything that is the subject of belief can be transformed into certain knowledge. Thus we have science on one side, a science limited to the physical world, and a supersensible, non-physical world on the other that may be accepted by anyone who finds it acceptable but cannot be known with certainty and must remain a matter of subjective faith.
Anyone who takes life seriously really ought to feel that the supposed distinction made by so many people between knowledge and belief poses a riddle which must be solved. Fundamentally speaking, however, only initiation science can genuinely show the reason for the efforts that are being made at the present time — and indeed have already been made for a long time, for centuries — to teach humankind the difference between knowledge of the finite, transitory realm of the senses and belief in something that is infinite, permanent, supersensible. You know that everything that is presented here from the point of view of spiritual science working towards anthroposophy is thoroughly scientific in spirit and asks to be considered as fully equal to the science relating to the physical world. It represents knowledge, perception, of the supersensible. Initiation knowledge has to look far back into human evolution, however, if it is to help us understand why in the present age humankind has been taught that there is such a difference between knowledge and faith.
Going back a long way in human evolution we come to a time when People had a primal knowledge — we have discussed this a number of times — that was inherited from the gods, as it were. Such things as proof, as demonstrating the truth of something, were not known then. Knowledge came to people at that time when a power arose in their hearts and minds that was not the power of empty, abstract thinking, or something like that, but a power filled with divine light substance, divine life substance, that felt itself to be in communion with divine worlds. Human beings knew that they were connected with divine spheres; they felt this and perceived it the way we perceive colours and sounds outside us. There was no need for proof, for there was perception of the immediate presence. People knew nothing of proof, nor of logical demonstration. All they knew was that as human beings they were filled with what the gods instilled into them. This certainly was ‘knowledge’ in the earliest stages of human evolution, and it had to do with perception of the divine origin of human beings. Knowing themselves to be united with the gods, and being given the Power by their initiates to look up to this union with the gods, people were also aware of the divine origin of man. They were aware that humankind had descended to earth from the world where it had existed as soul and spirit. The divine and spiritual origin of humankind was taken as a matter of course when this primal knowledge existed all over the globe in the early times of human evolution.
This primal knowledge had to develop further, however. If it had remained as it was, people would in a sense have continued to be filled with the divine spirit for ever, but they could not have achieved freedom, the ability to make free decisions. As soon as their arms moved, they would have had to say: ‘A god within me is moving my arms.’ When they were walking, they would have had to say: ‘A god within me is moving my feet.’ Those early human beings certainty. felt like that. They felt, as it were, that a divine spirit was present inside their skin. That is also the origin of the idea that the human body is a temple. In early times a human being was indeed like the earthly home of a god who who descended to earth to take up his abode among human beings. Human beings had to become independent, however. As a result this primal divine knowledge gradually faded and the divine heritage grew less and less. To achieve freedom, human beings had to develop knowledge, perception, thinking, feeling and will activity out of their own resources. In a way the gods abandoned them, but it was for their own good, if I may put it like this. Divine knowledge withdrew so that human knowledge might develop. In later times the whole path to be taken by the divine knowledge that had once existed all over the globe, the path to earthly and human knowledge, had to be watched over from the mystery centres. It was the task of initiates to regulate the way humankind were to be trained, as it were, so that human beings would find the right way of growing out of that ancient divine knowledge and into earthlY and human knowledge.
At a time when much of the original divine knowledge had faded and the mysteries had assumed the task of guiding human beings — by and large instructing them in such a way that the right transition could be made from primal wisdom to human knowledge and ultimately freedom — it happened that a certain number of people came together from the far reaches of the earth to look for a way in which the purpose of guiding humankind in the right way, purposes originating in the mystery centres, could be crossed. Human associations were formed, in a way, that considered it their mission to go against the proper course of progress. We really have to use spiritual science if we want to consider the activity of a widespread association of human beings in post-primeval times. History does not go that fax back and there are no documents to bear outer witness to that time. Such an association developed and adopted the mystery knowledge in a certain way, still using the methods that had been employed in the mysteries to maintain contact with the divine source and origin. By that time however the mystery centres where honest work was being done had long since been concentrating on guiding the transition from the divine knowledge of the ancients to human and earthly knowledge. Thus there was a time in earthly history when the rightful representatives of mystery knowledge were totally involved in guiding the transition from the divine knowledge of the ancients to human and earthly knowledge. That was the healthy feeling and attitude, healthy for that time. Mingled into this was an element arising because a well organized association wanted to restore to humankind an antiquated primal divine knowledge at a time when it was out of date, when the murmur of ancient divine knowledge was no longer supposed to reach human ears. At a time when they had grown beyond the state where they had divine knowledge, people found that there Was a group that still wanted the old knowledge to be widely accessible.
Why did the members of this association in post-primeval times want such a thing? They wanted to strike at the root, as it were, of the knowledge then evolving. They did not want humanity to achieve freedom. Efforts were indeed made in post-primeval times to prevent humankind from developing the faculties that would lead to freedom, and for that purpose the aim was to strike at the root of earthly and physical knowledge. These people, who may be called the 'enemies' of human evolution in post-primeval times, made the distinction between human knowledge and divine knowledge, a divine knowledge that was no longer legitimate at the time. To deluge human beings with divine knowledge, which they had grown out of by that time, meant to induce a dreamy, visionary state of conscious awareness. Vast masses of people lived in that kind of fanciful, visionary state in post-primeval times. Their inclinations to develop human knowledge were stifled. The reason why human knowledge came to be so deficient in many respects as time went on—I have given many examples of this — and why defects have even crept into the development of speech and language, was that a form of divine knowledge was presented to people in a way that appealed to their vanity.
Let us investigate the influences that made people endeavour to befog the minds of the masses and strike at the root of the new knowledge that was evolving and also at the root of a language that arose from the depths of human nature. It has to be said that the individuals concerned were totally under the influence of luciferic powers. Luciferic powers were alive in them, luciferic powers that did not want human thinking, feeling and will activity to descend as far as the earth, as it were. Human beings were supposed to grow more and more physical, but these individuals wanted to keep theft) spiritual, to stop them from achieving their mission on earth. The individuals concerned were the spiritualists of post-primeval times. They were against human progress. The divine intention was that human beings should find ways of letting their souls and spirits enter more and more deeply into physical bodies. The individuals of whom I am speaking wanted to prevent this, however. Considering this in present-day terms — because it is difficult to give an accurate characterization of the state human beings had reached during the post-primeval period — we might say that more than a little of a certain unconscious untruthfulness was apparent in those individuals. The impulse to descend into the material world, to make it part of oneself, had of course been given through the mysteries. The Lucifer-dominated individuals of post-primeval times certainly could not deny this. They therefore did not call themselves 'spiritualists' but actuallY ‘protagonists of the material world’ — to put it in present-day terms; these words would have to be translated into the terms in which people thought in primeval times. They told people: 'You will come to materiality if you follow us, if you make use of the power we provide in the form of later divine knowledge, if you use it to strengthen your soul and spirit. You will then find yourselves the conquerors of all that this earth holds for you; you will conquer the earth quickly and easily when you have a share in the power of the gods.' The Lucifer-dominated leaders of certain parts of humanity gave themselves the honourable title ‘fighters for the material world.’
Those individuals created a certain schism between human evolution as it was intended and the wrong notions which they presented to humanity, notions that the ideal was to conquer materiality rather than coming to be at home in it gradually. They said people should make certain divine powers their own by having supersensible knowledge at the wrong time, and that they should use this knowledge to conquer the material world that is perceptible to the senses.
Today we have the reverse picture of what existed in those primeval times. Certain confessions have started to oppose the regular progress of science, the acquisition of knowledge. Science has had its roots damaged, as it were. The result is that science and language show Certain defects throughout the course of Earth evolution. Science has nevertheless come about, for sufficient numbers of people who were under the influence of the true mysteries and corrupted initiation knowledge stood up against the individuals whose real aim was to strike at the root of knowledge and eradicate it. Science has come about. It has taken the road I have often characterized in detail. It reached the level it did by the middle of the 15th century, when the fifth post-Atlantean epoch began, and it has continued to the present time. According to present-day initiation knowledge, however, science has now reached a further turning point. Today it is ripe to enter into human freedom, as it were. Essentially modern science still considers only physical things to be valid and exact; it is only prepared to consider things that are perceptible to the senses or may be established on the basis of experiments. As I have often said, this science is now ripe to develop to a point where it can grasp Imagination, the inspired, the intuitive world; where it can find its ways to experience, to grasp the spirit. This science is ordained to grow and in growing to assume the form of spiritual vision. It is ripe for this today.
For the regular progress of science it will however be necessary for humanity to develop an inner attitude that wants to use the same conscientious approach to investigation and research that is used in botany, physics, chemistry and so on to explore the outer world of the senses and make outer science triumph. People must want to use that same attitude when it comes to the inner life of human beings. We must want the attitude and approach used in outer science to be transformed into a way of taking hold of the supersensible world in a living way. I have pointed the way in my Knowledge of the Higher Worlds, in Occult Science 53Die Geheimwissenschaft im Umriß 1910. GA 13. English translation: Occult Science. An Outline. G and M. Adams tr. London Rudolf Steiner Press 1969. and other books of this kind. It has to be clearly understood that the true aim we have at the bottom of our hearts, the only viable aim for spiritual science working towards anthroposophy, differs from Jesuitism, which is more or less its polar opposite. The difference is that Jesuitism in particular wants to keep science, knowledge as such, at the level of pure experimentation and observation. Take a look — but a careful look — at the scientific literature from Jesuit sources. The approach, the way of thinking, is as materialistic as it can be. It aims to keep knowledge entirely in the world of the senses, and strictly separate the knowledge that can only be obtained by observation based on the physical senses and by experimentation from anything that is a matter of belief or revelation. The reasoning is that no bridge shall ever be built between outer knowledge or science and anything to do with faith. Spiritual science working towards anthroposophy on the other hand is aiming to do just that, to find the way from a science of the physical, sense-perceptible world to a science of the spirit. This science of the spirit would however apply the same stringent standards as the outer science of the sense-perceptible world.
The picture, then, is as follows: The science of the physical, sense-perceptible world is the root. Supersensible knowledge is to evolve from the same impulses that govern botany, physics, chemistry and so on, except that they will be applied in a different field. In certain quarters it was foreseen that this was to come. It was however in the interests of these people to prevent it happening, and they therefore introduced something into human evolution that now presents itself as a sharp contrast. This is the sharp contrast I have spoken of earlier: the distinction made between ancient ways of knowing that in the regular course of events became human knowledge, human science, and a divine knowledge used to drug human minds. The sharp distinction between knowledge and belief was presented to human minds and the true aim turned into its opposite. Knowledge of the sense-perceptible world was to be firmly retained and given great emphasis. It simply has to be admitted that Jesuit literature on materialistic science is extraordinarily brilliant in the clarity of its reasoning, its sheer readability. The Jesuit literature on the material world is much more brilliantly written than the works of many others writers on the subject today. Father Erich Wasmann's 54Wasmann, Erich, entomologist. Major researches on ants. The MS of the lecture is not quite clear at this point, and the German editors have added the words in [ ]. work on ants, for example, is really good, you will gain more from reading it than from the pedantic, uninspired writings of other scientists. Many more examples could be given. The [work of the] Jesuits would be excellent if they confined themselves to the material world; it is a deliberate aim [of the Jesuits] to use their description of the material world to encourage people to associate knowledge with the materialistic aspect of the physical world only. The intention is to pretend to human minds that the methods used to gain knowledge cannot be used to investigate the supersensible world. In ancient times Lucifer-dominated individuals suggested that human beings would gain mastery of the world if they made use of ancient divine knowledge, yet evolution had already gone beyond this point. Now we have late followers of those people from post-primeval times pretending to the world that it is not possible to extend knowledge to the supersensible sphere and that knowledge cannot go beyond the sense-perceptible world. In those early times the intention had been to drug people with supersensible knowledge. Now human beings of the same ilk want to use all possible means to push humanity into the physical world; they want human beings to be stuck in that world and grasp the supersensible world only with the nebulous impulse of faith. In post-primeval times the aim had been to inundate humankind with an excess of supersensible knowledge. Today those late followers want human beings to have less than the right amount of knowledge in this sphere. Past intent was to provide supersensible knowledge that was no longer appropriate. Present intent is to let people have only sense-bound knowledge, making the supersensible world an area where every individual may hold whatever views he or she likes.
What would be the outcome if the group of people to whom we are referring were to achieve some kind of victory? These are the people who deliberately make a sharp distinction between knowledge and belief. There are of course large numbers of easily led people who come across the diatribe on the 'clear distinction between faith and knowledge' and repeat it; they merely repeat it. What is all this about? The aim is to do the opposite of what those individuals in post-primeval times did in their way. In the old days the intention was to prevent humanity from descending completely and taking up its mission on earth. Today the intention is to keep people tied to that mission on earth to prevent their further development, for which the earth would provide the basis. The very people who are now supporting materialism call themselves ‘spiritualists’, or priests of some faith or other, representatives of the supersensible world. In those ancient times the people offering a life in the spirit that was no longer justifiable called themselves materialists. They did so from the point of view which I have characterized. Today a large number of people who really wish to keep humanity bound to the material world call themselves representatives of the spiritual world. The most powerful source of materialism today does not lie in the ideas put forward by Buechner, Moleschott or Vogt. The most powerful source is Rome and anything that is in any way connected with this centre of materialism. They achieved their aims not by saying: ‘I want to encourage materialism’, but by keeping people bound to materialism. This is done by letting them develop faith merely as a nebulous impulse towards supersensible spheres and making sure that no impulse enters into humanity that could lead to comprehension of the supersensible sphere. The idea that Rome might lead the way in conquering the supersensible sphere for humanity is the historical untruth of the present age. This must be clearly and firmly understood. It must also be understood that Protestantism as it has evolved out of Roman Catholicism in recent times contains much that is of Roman Catholic origin. The desire to keep supersensible knowledge nebulous by making it a matter of faith, so that people cannot comprehend the supersensible world, has strongly persisted in the Protestant church. Quite apart from this, the signs of the times may be read to indicate clearly that Rome will overcome the Protestant element, and Rome will continue to make great efforts in the direction I have characterized.
So you see that if one wishes to achieve something in the world that goes against the normal progress of humanity one calls oneself by the opposite name, as it were. Humanity must learn to get beyond putting its trust in mere names, and it is indeed in the process of doing so. Humanity must go to deeper sources than merely living in words and phrases. Basically this is already beginning to happen. Imagine someone calls and you are brought a visiting card on which it says ‘Ernest Miller’. Surely you would not expect to see someone come through the door whose clothes are covered in flour. Nor would you expect ‘Richard Smith’ to come straight from shoeing horses. If you have lived in a village you may still recall people saying ‘There comes the miller’ — and that would have been a genuine miller — or 'There comes the smith', meaning a real blacksmith. There names were still more than an outer label. The names we bear have taken a road where it is no longer possible to draw conclusions as to the nature of the individual who calls himself by a particular name. The words that make up people's names give no clue as to the essential characteristics of the person or persons concerned. The name Smith does not tell us whether the person called by that name is a smith or not, nor can we conclude someone is a miller when we hear that his name is Miller. That is the road names have taken. The rest of the language will follow the same road, and people will have to learn to develop their ideas on principles other than words or phrases. You can draw no conclusions as to the nature of a person from the fact that his visiting card says he is Mr Miller. In the same way you will have to get used to the fact that the characteristics of words will not tell you what your ideas about the world ought to be.
If you seriously act in a way that is in accord with the urgent
necessity of the present time you find yourself little understood. If I
were to present the things I have to present by way of spiritual science
in a way that meets the modern desire for scientific terminology, I
would not be doing what I have in fact always made efforts to do. This
is to present a subject from all kinds of different angles, sometimes
more in their material aspect and at other times more in their spiritual
aspect, always remembering the principle which Goethe expressed as
follows: ‘The truth will certainly never be found exactly half-way
between two contradictory statements.’ 55Literally Goethe said the
‘It is said that the truth lies halfway between two contradictor), opinions. Far from it! The problem lies in between, it cannot be beheld; life, for ever active, calmly thought’ Maximen und Reflexionen).
The MS of the lecture had been quoted verbatim in the earlier German edition but has been found to be incomplete and therefore was revised for the German edition on which this translation is based. At the stage we have now reached in our evolution it simply is no longer possible to think that a particular content can be adequately defined by using words to give a one-sided characterization. The subject has to be characterized from different aspects, and the procedure used to characterize it in words must be similar to that used to make a photographic record of a tree, for instance, by taking pictures of it from a variety of angles. The photographs will look very different, but putting them together one sees something that conveys the tree as a whole.
Read the various courses of lectures and you will see that I have adhered to the principle and presented the subject matter from many different angles. If we wish to present the things human beings need today, things that will serve the progress of humankind, we must get into the habit of proceeding in this way. There are certain groups of people who are against this and want to continue to use rigid terminology. Human concerns cannot be defined in rigid terms and that is why we now see forms of socialism developing that want to go further into terminology definition but can only lead to destruction. Concerning events in Eastern Europe, people think the danger has passed now that the Poles have won; before that the Bolsheviks had the upper hand for a time, but the whole has been the most dreadful tragicomedy of human behaviour. The present war between Russia and Poland provides a good demonstration of the extent to which human beings have lost their moral fibre today.
My book Towards Social Renewal was genuinely based on the social life of the present time and the style was chosen to meet the needs of this present-day life. Yet people come and ask for word definitions more or less the way words are defined in most schoolbooks nowadays — much to the detriment of education and training. Words have more and more come away from the original inner experience, and it is increasingly necessary to draw one's conclusions as to the reality from other sources than the words used. After all, when we hear the name Miller we do not base our conclusions as to the nature of the individual on an analysis of the name Miller but on quite different aspects. It will be necessary for human beings to come away from words and judge the existing world by other criteria.
This had been in preparation for a long time, but it has not always been applied in a sense that would be in accord with human evolution. The outcome has been that widespread societies now say: ‘We declare ourselves for Christ’, yet after all the word used need not apply to the spirit they say they are worshipping. The point is not that something or other is called the Christ and that people have ideas about this Christ. The point is the real nature of the spirit towards whom human feelings are turning. And if one develops a very mundane image of this Christ, if one even undergoes militaristic initiation during one's training to learn how the soul has to be prepared before one forms an idea of the Christ, if one is shown the image of Jesus the King, seeing oneself and other followers as King Jesus' army, it may happen that having created such a material image of Christ one then gives the name of Christ to quite a different spirit. The truth is that one's soul is then turned towards quite a different spirit who is wrongfully called Christ. This happens a great deal nowadays and it happens in such a way that people sometimes have a peculiar awareness of it.
Many years ago I had a conversation in Marburg one day with a Protestant clergyman who had travelled a great deal. 56Christlieb, Max, a friend from Rudolf Steiner's time at Weimar who had done much to make The Philosophy of Freedom more widely known when it had just been published. See also Rudolf Steiner and Christlieb Ludwig Kleeberg, Wege und Worte, 2. Aufl. 1961 S. 76 ff. This also refers to the Marburg occasion. We talked of the way the real idea of the Christ has gradually disappeared from modern theology, of the way this modern theology is on the one hand using certain initiation ceremonies to bring Christ down and make Him a physical Jesus even in the picture one has of Him, and how on the other hand certain theologians see Christ only as the ‘simple man of Nazareth’. This Protestant theologian, a man who had travelled widely and seen something of the world, then said to me: 'The younger generation of theologians really no longer have the Christ, they really should no longer called themselves Christians or followers of Christ; they really ought to call themselves Jesuits, except that that name already has another meaning, because all they are left with is Jesus.' Those were not my views but the views of a Protestant theologian who has travelled a great deal. To stop you from developing prejudices and taking too poor a view of theologians, let me add that the man was a Swabian and was also married to a Swabian, a lady from Stuttgart to boot. That is just to stop you from getting prejudiced.
We have tried to see how the separation of knowledge and belief came about. This separation of knowledge and belief also prevents people from knowing that there is a life before birth, or before conception. I also spoke of this yesterday. 57‘Die groflen Aufgaben von heute im Geistesleben, Rechtsleben und Wirtschaftsleben. Eine dritte Gegenwartsrede.’ (Major presentday tasks in cultural life, the sphere of rights and in economic life. A third topical talk.) Publ. in Rudolf Steiner: Drei Gegenwartsreden (Three topical talks), Heft 8, Dornach 1952. To be published in GA 335. All that is permitted is belief in life post mortem, i.e. after death, for that is an idea that can be presented to human minds even if one reckons only with egotistical elements in the human soul. The concept of life before birth, the life we have gone through between our last death and our birth into the present life, needs perceptive insight if it is to be grasped; it is no good putting one's money on egotistical soul instincts if one wishes to teach it. The way people are here on earth is that they do not care to know what they have gone through before; egotistical reasons make them interested to know what will happen after death, however. It is easy to preach on what people may expect after death, therefore, for that appeals to the egotistical instincts in their souls. It is difficult to preach on life before birth; instead one must assume that human beings desire to know the truth and want to live a life that is worthy of human beings. This will of course lead us to see education and then also the whole of life on earth in a new light. Life on earth must be seen as the fulfilling of a mission we have been given before we descended from the spiritual world into physical existence.
This new approach that simply must come to be widely accepted in the outside world, an approach that will also have to create new social forms, has many enemies. You can guess this from various hidden trends. I want to end today be telling you something — this is something I am forced to do — of the murky sources and origins of the elements that want to destroy our spiritual science. The sheer effrontery is staggering and there will be more and more of this unless souls come awake to a much greater degree than has been the case until now.
You know, and our friends here have fought against it, that the abominable slander has been spread about all over Germany and beyond of German officers being betrayed to the Entente due to the efforts of the Threefold Order people and so forth. 58See conclusions of lectures given on 11 and 17 January 1920 in Geistige und soziale Wandlungen in der Menschheitsentwickelung. GA 196, S. 52 & 82 ff. (Cultural and social changes in the evolution of humanity). No record of translation into English. I have recently been supplied with copies of some of the abominable documents that are widely distributed at present — fake letters reputedly written by our people, cunningly designed to spread the most dreadful slander, and faked interviews. Their character will be obvious to you as soon as I tell you that one of them concludes with the words: ‘D.H. is not in fact part of the Steiner fraternity. He has merely infiltrated the organization to spy on them, to get on to their tricks. He has reported his findings to a small group of patriotic people, and the word is that Steiner is committing high treason and is in league with the Entente.’ That is just a small sample of the murky work that is being done, and it it much more widespread than you would think.
Another very pretty example comes from someone in this area 59Rohm, Karl, editor of the journal Der Leuchtturm, Lorch (Württemberg). whom I once called a swine in a public lecture — because everything this person is instigating against me simply cannot be called by any other name. This person is now using the black art of printing to spread things against me in an article headed ‘Threefold Order Plagiarized’. This says no less than that a lady had created a threefold order some time ago. (The lady was not quite careful enough, however, for she failed to find out from the literature that my threefold order was known before that in certain circles; she gives a time that is somewhat later than the time when I was talking to a great many people about the threefold order in question.) This lady, then, is said to have created a threefold order and to have sent the manuscript to a philanthropic society; it is then said to have gone to Hamburg where the person Concerned kept it for four weeks rather than two, and that I probably read it in that time and took the threefold idea from that manuscript. Of course the lady cannot very well say that there is any agreement between the threefold order I am presenting and whatever she had put in her manuscript. She therefore maintains that the threefold idea was plagiarized from her manuscript, but that it has been messed about. Oh yes. He's pinched my watch, but that one looks quite different! She has now written a work about her threefold order. According to her this consists of the golden section ‘state, cultural sphere, church’, with everything again determined by the golden section. So we get a centralized state and within it two parts — exactly the same as postulated in the threefold order; so the threefold order is a botch job. — if you want to get an idea, let me recommend this work to you; the title is 3:5, 5:8 = 21:34. The secret of clearing the debts in reasonable time’ [English rendering of the original German title] by Elisabeth Mathilde Metzdorff-Teschner, 60Further details in E. Uehli, ‘Die gestohlene Dreigliederung’ in Dreigliederung des sozialen Organismus 2. Jahrg. Nr. 11 (Sept. 1920). published by the author in 1920. Maybe you could make amends by saying: ‘We have been working for the threefold order, but we really only did this in Mrs Elizabeth Metzdorff-Teschner's name.’ That is another thing she expects of us, and she is writing letters to all kinds of people.
That is Mr Rohm's source, and the things he writes are now reaching Switzerland where they are presented to the people by every Roman Catholic parish priest. No one of course has even the least idea of the actual source. These articles say something very different, and people find it quite easy to believe, for the idiocy at the source of it is not apparent. That is the way people work nowadays and they know very well what they are doing. They are deliberately working against the sincere efforts that are being made to serve the true progress of humankind. In Switzerland it is above all the Roman Catholic Parish priests who are using that style, reprinting everything that comes from the centres run by Mr Knapp 61Knapp, Alfred, established 'Internationaler Orden fiir Ethik und Kultur' (International Order for Ethics and Culture). and others, everything disgorged from the rubbish bins of Mr Rohm and so forth. I cannot help remembering that until recently there have been — and indeed still are — many people even among anthroposophists who are faithful subscribers to Mr Rohm's Leuchtturm [Lighthouse]. They keep dishing up Mr Rohm's views, keep coming up with one thing or another
I am sorry, I had to give you some small samples — there are plenty more — so that you can see the methods that are used.
The strength inherent in spiritual science working towards anthroposophy should give anthroposophy the strength to gain more than just names from words—a feeling for the truth. Once you have a feeling for the truth you will find the road, and it lies in a very different region from what people generally find comfortable in the present time. It is a road to be sought in the kind of way I have described today. It would be more comfortable in this day and age to talk of other things rather than refer to the powerful adversaries who are responsible for distinction being made between knowledge and belief and who aim to block the road by which knowledge of the sense-perceptible world can become knowledge of spheres beyond the senses.