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The Rudolf Steiner Archive

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The Christmas Conference
GA 260
Part II. The Proceedings of the Conference

XII. Continuation of the Foundation Meeting

29 December, 10 a.m.


My dear friends!

Today our agenda begins by giving us the pleasure of the lecture by Herr Werbeck.

Louis Werbeck gives his lecture on ‘The Opposition to Anthroposophy’.

DR STEINER: Dear friends, let us have a fifteen-minute break before continuing with yesterday's meeting of members.

DR STEINER: My dear friends! Let us hear again today the words which are to resound in our soul both here and later, when we depart and carry out with us what is intended here:

Soul of Man!
Thou livest in the limbs
Which bear thee through the world of space
In the spirit's ocean-being.
Practise spirit-recalling
In depths of soul,
Where in the wielding will
Of world-creating
Thine own
I Comes to being
Within God's I.
And thou wilt truly live
In the World-Being of Man.

For the Father-Spirit of the heights holds sway
In depths of worlds begetting being.
Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones!
Let there ring out from the heights
What in the depths is echoed
Ex Deo nascimur.

Soul of Man!
Thou livest in the beat of heart and lung
Which leads thee through the rhythm of time
Into the realm of thine own soul's feeling.
Practise spirit-awareness
In balance of the soul,
Where the surging deeds
Of the world's becoming
Thine own I
With the World-I.
And thou wilt truly feel
In the Soul-Weaving of Man.

For the Christ-Will in the encircling round holds sway
In the rhythms of the worlds, bestowing grace on the soul.
Kyriotetes, Dynamis, Exusiai !
Let there be fired from the East
What through the West is formed
In Christo morimur.

Soul of Man!
Thou livest in the resting head
Which from the grounds of eternity
Opens to thee the world-thoughts.
Practise spirit-beholding
In stillness of thought,
Where the eternal aims of Gods
World-Being's Light
On thine own I
For thy free willing.
And thou wilt truly think
In the Spirit-Foundations of Man.

For the world-thoughts of the Spirit hold sway
In the being of worlds, craving for light,
Archai, Archangeloi, Angeloi !
Let there be prayed from the depths
What in the heights will be granted
Per Spiritum Sanctum reviviscimus.

Let us once again take hold of these words in meaningful sections. Here we have:

[Rudolf Steiner writes on the blackboard as he speaks. See Facsimile 4, Page XV bottom.]

Practise spirit-recalling

What takes place in the soul of man is related to all being in the cosmos of spirit, soul and body. Thus this ‘Practise spirit-recalling’ especially points to what is heard in the call to the Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones when the manner in which they work in the universe is characterized:

Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones!
Let there ring out from the heights
What in the depths is echoed

We have the right cosmic concept when we picture in our soul how the voices of Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones resound in the universal word and are heard because they find an echo in the depths of the grounds of world existence, and how what is inspired from above and what resounds from below, the universal word, emanates from Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones.

In the second verse we have:

Practise spirit-awareness

This is related to the second hierarchy: Kyriotetes, Dynamis, Exusiai. To characterize them we imagine their voices in the universal word working as expressed in the words:

Kyriotetes, Dynamis, Exusiai!
Let there be fired from, the East
What through the West is formed

The third member of man's existence is:

Practise spirit-beholding

To this we add the indication of how the third hierarchy enters with its work into the universal word:

Archai, Archangeloi, Angeloi!
Let there be prayed from the depths
What in the heights will be granted

[As shown on the blackboard]

Practise spirit-recalling
S. Ch. T.

Let there ring out from the heights
What in the depths is echoed

Practise spirit-awareness

K. D. Ex.

Let there be fired from the East
What through the West is formed

Practise spirit-beholding

A. AA. Ang.

Let there be prayed from the depths
What in the heights will be granted

Here we have the opposite of the first hierarchy in whose case the voices resound downwards while their echo comes up from below. And we have here the voices heard coming from beings who pray for something from below and whose prayer is answered from the heights downwards into the depths. From above downwards: from the heights towards the depths; from the encircling round: East and West; from below upwards: from the depths into the heights.

My dear friends! Something left over from earlier is a letter to the Vorstand of the Anthroposophical Society in Dornach from the Polish Anthroposophical Society which has not been represented here: ‘The working groups in Poland — Cracow, Lemberg, Warsaw — have resolved to found the Polish Anthroposophical Society. The Society shall serve the ideas of Anthroposophy by revealing the treasures of its spiritual teachings to the widest circles and by working among the Polish people in a time of destiny, helping them to recognize their mission. For the celebration of the laying of the Foundation Stone, the newly-founded Anthroposophical Society in Poland sends to the leader and founder of the international Anthroposophical Movement, Dr Steiner, this expression of their highest respect. The Polish Anthroposophical Society urgently requests that he may concern himself with it and not deny it his protection and guidance. For its part, it commits itself ... (the final words were obscured by noise).

For the Warsaw circle:
For the Lemberg circle:
For the remaining circles:
Luna Drechsler as their representative.’

Furthermore from Cologne on the Rhine: ‘For the celebration of the laying of the Foundation Stone in 1923 I wish you and ... (unclear) that the significance of this laying of the Foundation Stone may be revealed to all the world. With cordial greetings, Gottfried Husemann.’

My dear friends, I now consider that for the moment the Vorstand has put before you the main concerns that had to be brought to you. In the next few days there will still be the matter of a draft of some By-Laws or rules of practice to be attached to the Statutes. But now our main concern, before any other discussions, is that our dear friends should have a chance to express what they wanted to say. Here is a list of those who wish to speak or report, and I think it would be best, in order to save time, not to proceed along given lines — for if you do this you waste time — but to bring to completion what our respected, dear friends have to say. So I would like to ask whether you agree that those friends who have already asked to speak should now have their say.

They are Herr Leinhas, Dr Kolisko, Dr Stein, Dr Palmer, Herr Werbeck, Dr Lehrs, Miss Cross, Mademoiselle Rihouët, Mr Collison, Frau Hart-Nibbrig, Herr de Haan, Herr Stibbe, Herr Zagzwijn, Frau Ljungquist.

Dr Wachsmuth points out that these requests to speak were made at the beginning and referred to general matters, not specific themes.

DR STEINER: Then let me ask for the names of those friends who now wish to say something. It is naturally necessary, for the further progress of the meeting, that those friends or delegates who are concerned about something should express this. So now in a comprehensive, general discussion let me ask all those who wish to do so to speak about what concerns them with regard to the Anthroposophical Society which has been founded here.

MR COLLISON: Later on could we please speak about education.

DR STEINER: Would anyone like to speak about something entirely general? If this is not the case, dear friends, then let us proceed to the discussion of more specific aspects. According to the programme we have a discussion on the affairs of the Society and on educational questions. Perhaps someone first has something to say with reference to Herr Werbeck's lecture and so on?

Herr Hohlenberg wishes to speak.

DR STEINER: Herr Hohlenberg will speak on the subject of the antagonism we face.

Herr Hohlenberg does this.

DR STEINER: The best thing will be if I leave what I have to say on this subject till the conclusion of the discussion. A good deal will still be brought forward over the next few days.

The next person who wishes to speak about the affairs of the Society, and also the Youth Movement, is Dr Lehrs. May I invite Dr Lehrs to speak.

Dr Lehrs speaks about the Free Anthroposophical Society.

DR STEINER: My dear friends! I do not want a misunderstanding to arise in respect of what I said here a few days ago. Dr Lehrs has understood me entirely correctly, and any other interpretation would not be correct. I did not mean that what was suggested then no longer applies today. I said that I had naturally felt it to be tragic that I had to make the suggestion of creating a division between the Anthroposophical Society in Germany and the Free Anthroposophical Society. But this suggestion was necessary; it was the consequence of the situation as it was then. And now it is equally necessary that this Free Anthroposophical Society should continue to exist and work in the manner described by our young friend from various angles. So please consider Dr Lehrs' interpretation of what I said a few days ago to be entirely correct.

I assume that Herr Hans Ludwig Pusch wishes to speak to what Dr Lehrs has said, so may I ask Herr Hans Ludwig Pusch to speak now.

Herr Hans Ludwig Pusch speaks about the aims and endeavours of German young people in Hamburg.

DR STEINER: Could I ask you to continue with your report at this point tomorrow. We have to keep to the times on the programme.

We shall continue this meeting tomorrow after Dr Schubert's lecture on ‘Anthroposophy, a Leader towards Christ’. May I now ask those friends who wish to speak, or who feel they must speak for definite reasons, to let me know this evening after the lecture so that I can gain an impression of the number of speakers and make room in the agenda. Please bear in mind that we must make the most fruitful use of the days at our disposal. Apart from what has already been announced in connection with my three last lectures, it will also be necessary to have some smaller, specialist meetings with the doctors present here. Other smaller meetings will also have to be planned.

Now let me announce the next part of the agenda: This afternoon at 4.30 the Nativity Play; in the evening at 8.30 my lecture. Tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock the lecture by Dr Schubert on ‘Anthroposophy, a Leader to Christ’. This will be followed by the continuation of today's meeting which we have had to interrupt in the middle of a speech. Unfortunately we shall probably have to do this again to enable us to carry out the proceedings in a rational manner. The meeting is now adjourned till tomorrow.

I still have a few announcements to make and would ask you to remain in your seats. First of all, please do all you can to avoid crowding at the entrance. I have been told that older people who are more frail than the young have been put in danger, so please avoid this and give consideration to others.

Secondly, Dr Im Obersteg, Centralbahn Platz 9, Basel, who has frequently arranged rail and sea travel for us, has offered to make the necessary arrangements for those who need them for their return journey. In our experience Dr Im Obersteg's service is exceptionally reliable. Chiefly it will be a matter of taking over ship and rail tickets for the western countries such as Norway, Sweden, England, Holland, France, Spain, Italy and so on. You can either go direct or arrange it through us. Will those who have wishes in this respect please approach Dr Wachsmuth.