Sensitive Chaos

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Sensitive Chaos: The Creation of Flowing Forms in Water and Air

Water is more than a mere flow of energy or a useful means of transport. Why does water in streams and rivers always take a winding course? Do common principles and rhythms guide the movement of water—whether in the sea, in a plant, or in our human blood?

More than ever before, today we need “water consciousness” and we can begin with this essential and classic book on water as the universal bearer of living, formative processes. Beginning with simple flowing phenomena of water and air, Schwenk gradually builds up, with the help of marvelous photographs and drawings, the “letters” of an alphabet that will allow us to “read” the living meaning of water.

Schwenk gradually brings the spiritual, formative processes to light, and we come to see the creative word in the universe. This is an important work for a deeper understanding of a fundamental element of life.

A perennial bestseller since its initial publication, Sensitive Chaos is essential reading for anyone interested in the mysteries of life on Earth. Lavishly illustrated.

“Long before the advent and popularity of the chaos theory, Theodor Schwenk had understood the relations between chaos, the emergence of form, and the sensitive dependence of initial conditions that characterize the chaotic state in nature and in theory. His important work has never been surpassed.” —Ralph Abraham, University of California professor of mathematics and author of Chaos, Gaia, Eros: A Chaos Pioneer Uncovers the Three Great Streams of History

“From space, the Earth is seen as a water planet; less than thirty percent is land. Our sister planets Mars and Venus were made of the same stuff when they started, but are now drier than any conceivable desert on Earth. We know that without water there can be no life, but also it is true that without life, there can be no water. In Sensitive Chaos, Theodor Schwenk teaches us about this wonderful connection between water and life. So movingly and well told is his tale that you will not want to put the book down until the end.” —James Lovelock, scientist and author of Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth

“Theodor Schwenk is a seminal exponent of an alternative reading of nature…. To study this book is a transforming experience in which meaning and beauty are restored to our world.” ” —Kathleen Raine, author of Defending Ancient Springs and Golgonooza: City of Imagination

About the Author

Theodor Schwenk (1910–1986) was a pioneer in water and flow research. He founded the Institute for Flow Sciences for the scientific study of water’s movement and life-giving forces. A well-known author and lecturer, he contributed original insights and methods to the production of homeopathic, anthroposophic medicines. He developed “drop-pictures” for analyzing water quality and methods for healing polluted, “dead” water. Schwenk gained public recognition with the publication of Sensitive Chaos: The Creation of Flowing Forms in Water and Air.

Jacques-Yves Cousteau (1910–1997) was a French naval officer, explorer, conservationist, filmmaker, innovator, scientist, photographer, author and researcher who studied the sea and all forms of life in water. He co-developed the Aqua-Lung, pioneered marine conservation and was a member of the Académie française.

Additional information

Weight 24 oz
Dimensions 8 × 0.75 × 9 in


Johanna Wrigley, Olive Whicher


Walther Roggenkamp


Jacques Cousteau




September 2008






Rudolf Steiner Press


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