Social and Anti-Social Forces

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Social and Anti-Social Forces: A lecture by Rudolf Steiner

Berne, December 12, 1918 (CW 186)

The social impulse lulls us to sleep in relation to others, while the assertion of one’s individuality keeps us awake. What, then, is the anti-social force? There is a need for anti-social forces to work inwardly while social impulses find their expression in outer structures. Above all, the interest of one human being in another is the backbone of all social life.

About the Author

Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925) was born in the small village of Kraljevec, Austro-Hungarian Empire (now in Croatia), where he grew up (see right). As a young man, he lived in Weimar and Berlin, where he became a well-published scientific, literary, and philosophical scholar, known especially for his work with Goethe’s scientific writings. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he began to develop his early philosophical principles into an approach to systematic research into psychological and spiritual phenomena. Formally beginning his spiritual teaching career under the auspices of the Theosophical Society, Steiner came to use the term Anthroposophy (and spiritual science) for his philosophy, spiritual research, and findings. The influence of Steiner’s multifaceted genius has led to innovative and holistic approaches in medicine, various therapies, philosophy, religious renewal, Waldorf education, education for special needs, threefold economics, biodynamic agriculture, Goethean science, architecture, and the arts of drama, speech, and eurythmy. In 1924, Rudolf Steiner founded the General Anthroposophical Society, which today has branches throughout the world. He died in Dornach, Switzerland.

Additional information

Weight 8 oz
Dimensions 5 × 0.1 × 8 in




January 2003






CW 186


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