Neill Reilly presents portraits (rather than biographies) of five remarkable individuals. These are short, subjective, affectionate sketches. The author relates fond remembrances of five departed souls in deeply personal portraits that are nevertheless meaningful even for those who have never heard of these people who chose a life of service. Readers can test the facts presented here and determine their usefulness as inspiration for living a better life. If the author seems too fond of his subjects, he readily pleads guilty as charged.
The five “Michaelic” individuals portrayed are Professor Fritz Koelln, John Fentress Gardner, Lee Lecraw, Marjorie Spock, and William Ward. As students of Rudolf Steiner’s Spiritual Science, they each sought to bring new light to philosophy, education, and the arts for the future.
The term Michaelic refers to the qualities expressed by the Archangel Michael, who fights the dark forces that work to suppress human hope, goodness, loving kindness, and true community. Michael is often depicted as armored and resolute, giving no quarter to evil. He is intimately connected with Christ as Earth’s guiding light. Each of these five individuals represents well-lived, Michaelic lives. Like the book’s cover image, Archangel Michael assumes a balanced stance, with one foot restraining the head of Satan and his sword at the ready. Such balance and focus is critical to all human endeavors, especially those related to spiritual life and contributions to education and society.
These five brief portraits offer inspiration to all who aspire to live a deeper and more balanced life, one that pours much-needed loving kindness and selfless service into our world.
C O N T E N T S
Fritz Carl August Koelln
John Fentress Gardner
About the Author
Neill Reilly was born and raised on Long Island, New York. He graduated from Bowdoin College with a B.A. in Philosophy and from The Waldorf Institute at Adelphi University with an M.A. in Waldorf Pedagogy. Neill taught high school English for seven years at the Kimberton and Garden City Waldorf schools and at a Catholic high school and coached basketball, track, and lacrosse. He also directed plays. After teaching, he worked as a salesperson at Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers, Jefferies and Company, and numerous financial technology firms including EJV, NEON, and TIBCO. He is married with two children. Neill is also the author of Songs and Dreams: By Seeking We Are Found (Lindisfarne Books, 2017)