The Bridge between Universal Spirituality and the Physical Constitution of Man
3 lectures, Dornach, December 17-19, 1920 (CW 202)
Rudolf Steiner addresses the following topics in these lectures:
1. Soul-and-Spirit in Man’s Physical Constitution: The physical organism of man is considered today to consist of more or less solid-fluid substances; but as well as his solid, physical body, man has within him as definite organisms, a fluid body, an air-body and a warmth-body. — The connections of these organisms with the members of man’s whole being and with the different Ethers. — Thought and Tone; Ego and circulating Blood. — Man in the sleeping state. — Man’s relation to the universal Spirituality. — Imagination, Inspiration, Intuition. — The circumscribed view of the human organism prevailing today is unable to build any bridge between the physical body and the soul-and-spirit.
2. The Moral as the Source of World-Creative Power: Recapitulation of previous lecture. — Connection of the moral world-order with the physical world-order. — The moral world-order has no place in the natural scientific thinking of today. — The positive effect of moral ideals and ideas and the negative effect of theoretical ideas on the four organisms in man. — The materialistic conception of the imperishability of matter and energy. — Matter and energy die away to nullity; but man’s moral thinking imbues life into substance and will. — The natural world dies away in man; in the realm of the moral a new natural world comes into being; thus are the moral order and the natural order connected. — Absence of spirituality in the modern picture of the world which is based on the Copernican system. — Kepler and Newton. — We need a spiritual view of the universe. — The sun is not a globe of burning gas but the reflection of a spiritual reality revealed in the physical. — The moral power developed by man rays out and is reflected as the spiritual Sun. — Julian the Apostate. — The connection of the spiritual Sun with the physical sun is the Christ-Secret.
3. The Path to Freedom and Love and Their Significance in World-Events: Man as a being of Thinking, Action and Feeling. — The connection of the life of thought with the will. — Pure thinking: irradiation of the life of thought by will. — This leads to Freedom. — Irradiation of the life of will by thoughts leads to Love. — The meaning of the ancient expressions: Semblance, Power, Wisdom. — To speak of the imperishability of matter and energy annuls Love. — The significance of Freedom and Love in world-happenings.
This book contains translations of three lectures from Der Mensch in Zusammenhang mit dem Kosmos 2: Die Brücke zwischen der Weltgeistigkeit und dem Physischen des Menschen. Die Suche nach der neuen Isis, der göttlichen Sophia (GA 202).
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.