The Battle for the Spirit: The Church and Rudolf Steiner
This book is a collection of some of the writings, lectures and broadcasts of Canon Shepherd, a man perhaps best known for his book A Scientist of the Invisible (1954) which is an introduction to the work of Rudolf Steiner. This made a great impression at the time because this well-respected Archdeacon and Canon of the Church of England was prepared to come forward and testify positively to the contribution made by Rudolf Steiner to the evolution of humanity.
David Clement, who compiled this collection, introduces it with an excellent biography of the author. The first part of the book contains articles written for The Birmingham Post which are all short and which serve as guide to the Christian cycle of the year. They are a help for understanding the festivals. They are easily readable; some of them have a humorous element: for example, in order to illustrate the meaning of one of the parables of the New Testament, Canon Shepherd gives to the Pharisee and the Publican English names – Mr. Robinson and Mr. Smith.
Individual articles could be read again and again at the appropriate time of the year. – The second part contains longer articles and lectures. They reveal how sensitive Shepherd was to the needs of the various audiences he was addressing, and his ability to express himself in a fitting and relevant way. One article worthy of note is an exposition of the Council of Constantinople, where the Western Church asserted that man is a duality of body and soul as distinct from a trinity that includes the spirit. Shepherd shows how this has influenced the churches’ attitude to knowledge of the spirit today.
About the Author
Arthur Pearce Shepherd, DD was Archdeacon of Dudley from 1934 until 1951. Shepherd was educated at Cardiff High School and Jesus College, Oxford; and ordained in 1911. After a curacy at All Saints, Northampton he was Assistant Secretary for Young People’s Work at the Church Mission Society.
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