“The more you investigate these creatures and the manner in which they live, the more you will come to the conclusion that there is a great intelligence in how they work and what they accomplish.” —Rudolf Steiner
While the benefits of Steiner’s research into agriculture and education are increasingly recognized, his research into the nature of bees has had limited impact on beekeeping practices and on our general understanding of nature. Wisdom of the Bees examines Steiner’s insights and research into the nature of bees and their implications for the future of beekeeping.
Today, more than eighty years after Rudolf Steiner presented his lectures on bees, we are confronted with a serious decline of honeybees around the world. This fact alone justifies Wisdom of the Bees, a practical and timely introduction to biodynamic beekeeping. Erik Berrevoets revisits those seminal lectures and reexamines Steiner’s observations and insights in the context of today’s dire situation and provides practical advice for modern beekeeping practices.
Wisdom of the Bees is an accessible and essential introduction to the urgent subject of holistic beekeeping practices.
1. Introduction: A Spiritual Approach to Beekeeping
2. Spiritual Science and Beekeeping
3. A Spiritual Understanding of the Nature of Bees
4. Spiritual Relationships: Bees, Plants, Honey, and People
5. Hives and Hive Management
6. Artificial Breeding
7. Healthy Bee Colonies
8. The Role of the Beekeeper
Appendix: Hive Design Features
Resources for Beekeeping
About the Author
Erik Berrevoets was born in the Netherlands and migrated to Australia in his early twenties. After working for a short time on a sheep station, in encyclopedia sales, and as a waiter, he studied anthropology and sociology, which culminated in a postgraduate degree in rural sociology. Following his studies, he was employed as a researcher for a number of government agencies in areas such as indigenous education and fisheries management. Erik has had a lifelong interest in biodynamic agriculture and the spiritual and cultural dimensions of nature. A formal training course in biodynamic agriculture provided the inspiration for revisiting Rudolf Steiner’s bee lectures and resulted in writing Wisdom of the Bees. For the past several years, Erik Berrevoets has kept both native Australian and European honeybees, reviving a family tradition that goes back at least three generations.