Steiner on left handedness

From: winters_diana
Date: Tue Dec 30, 2003 9:04 am
Subject: Steiner on left handedness

One final comment from me. I have just searched both google and the critics list archives (per Tarjei's suggestion) to locate an indication that Michaela Glockler has renounced or changed her position on switching left-handed children in Waldorf schools. I can find nothing along these lines. The best summary I can find of the traditional policy on left handers in Waldorf is summed up in a post from Dan to the critics list in 1997. If there is more recent info available, I would be very grateful to anyone who can locate it. I know of no evidence Glockler has changed her mind. I am glad to hear that Jan's child did not experience this; as I said, I believe the practice is slowly dying. I would also like to comment to Jan that what follows is not "lies" and "smears," but quotes from anthroposophical publications.
Diana

Dan wrote, April 14, 1997:
Steiner taught that left-handedness is a defect that should be corrected, and prescribed exercises for it.

A teacher:-Asked whether children should be broken of left- handedness. Dr. Steiner: As a rule, yes! Whilst they are young, somewhat before the ninth year, left-handed children can be trained to do all their school work with the right hand. This should be avoided only if it might be harmful, which is seldom the case. The children do not consist of a simple additon of forces but are far more complicated than that. If you try to bring about symmetry between right and left and get the children to exercise both hands equally, it can lead to weakmindedness in later life. The phenomenon of left-handedness is decidedly karmic, in fact a karmic weakness. To take an example: If in a previous incarnation a person has overworked, and overstrained, himself not only physically or intellectually but in his whole life of soul, he brings such a pronounced weakness into his following incarnation that he is not capable of overcoming this weakness that is now in the lower part of his being. (The part of man arising from the life between death and a new life is, in the new incarnation, concentrated particularly in the lower part of his organisation, whereas what springs from the previous life appears more in the head region.) Therefore, what is usually strong becomes weak, and to compensate for this the left leg and left hand are called in to help. The preponderance of the left hand leads to the right frontal convolutions of the brain instead of the left being engaged in speech. If we give way to this too much this weakness may persist into the following (third) incarnation. If we do not give in to it the weakness will be sorted out."
[Steiner "Conferences with Teachers-Volume 4" p. 29]

Audrey McAllen is the A. (I will abbreviate Anthroposophical hereafter) expert on learning disabilities and therapy. In her book "The Extra Lesson" she says "[C]areless handling or over- stimulation of the sensory organism can cause what whould have been a normal right-sided dominance to vary from one side of the body to the other. ...The decision for any handedness change may only be made by the school doctor in consultation with parents and carried out under his supervision." (p. 23).

There is a lengthy discussion of the A. approach to left-handedness in Glockler and Goebel's "A Guide to Child Health," pp. 314-318:
"In Waldorf schools, left-handed children are encouraged to write with their right hands. ... [I]n state schools children are mostly given a free hand on the grounds that branding the children as left- handed and making them change over leads to traumatic problems. ... [W]e see these symptoms as the result of changeover methods based on compulsion and pressure, aggravated by the timescale in which writing has to be learnt in most state schools. ... A further objection is that the speech organs will be impaired. It is however an incorrect notion that the speech centre is developed in the half of the brain opposite to the dominant hand. ... There are three reasons for learning to write with the right hand ... Strengthening the will: Learning to write with the right hand is...an exercise of will for every child; but for the left-handed one it is especially so... Qualities of right and left: It is not a matter of indifference whether it is the right or the left hand which is used for writing. ... Values of right and left are expressed in the words "dexterity" from the Latin dexter, a right hand, and "sinister" from the Latin for left hand. Many more examples of this kind can be found in other languages and cultures. We find a similar disparity when we study the human organism and the distribution of those organs which are not in pairs, like liver, gall, heart and spleen. ... [N]ot only are there cultural and linguistic values given to left and right but related qualities are to be found in the bodily functions. ... Aspects of destiny: A left-handed person enters life with tasks and qualities different from those of a right-handed person. In a lecture to teachers, Rudolf Steiner describes how left-handedness of varying degrees is the result of a former earth-life in which the individual has overtaxed himself either physically or emotionally. The right side is weakened and allows the left to seem stronger. ... If the left-handed child learns to write with his right hand his left side will be relieved of the burden of this activity which is not of its nature."

The "Bulletin of the Remedial Research Group" No. 7-Autumn 1987, from Rudolf Steiner College, Fair Oaks, is mostly devoted to left- handedness. (It contains a notice that it is not for public circulation-Waldorf teachers only.) It has a long reprint from Glockler and Gobel and several other articles. Some quotes: Robert M. Dudney, M.D., says "The increasing occurrence of children preferring the left hand is a symptom of tendencies to cultural decay. ... Some left-handers need no other remediation than learning to write with their right hand. Others require remedial lessons and or medical treatment."
At the May, 1987 Remedial Teachers Conference in the Netherlands, Else Gottgens said: "One of the most vital things is that, on the first day in Class One, the children are told that people all have a writing hand and a drawing hand. With some people, they are the same hand, and with other people, they are two different hands.
Then, using one's authority, we say, 'The hand on that side,' pointing to our writing hand (right side of the body) 'is our writing hand, and we shall all learn to write with that hand, and we are going to start right now. ...' We introduce the straight line and curved line, telling the children 'Later on, we shall find these in writing.' When they first start to draw the straight line and curve, it is good that they hold something beautiful in the left hand--a flower or a crystal."
"Rudolf Steiner's Indication for Changing Lefthanded Children" is reprinted, attributed to the Teachers' Conferences (without volume or page). It is an exercise in which the child follows with his eyes the teacher's finger tracing each arm up and down three times. This is typical of Steiner's quack "therapy." The Bulletin recommends a book: "The Problem of Lefthandedness: For Medical-Therapeutic Eurythmy Work. Excerpts and Contributions, Compiled and with an introduction by Gerda Hueck." Trans. R.E.M. Finser. Spring Valley, NY: St. George Publications.

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From: golden3000997
Date: Tue Dec 30, 2003 2:54 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Steiner on left handedness

Diana wrote:

"Rudolf Steiner's Indication for Changing Lefthanded Children" is reprinted, attributed to the Teachers' Conferences (without volume or page). It is an exercise in which the child follows with his eyes the teacher's finger tracing each arm up and down three times. This is typical of Steiner's quack "therapy."

But why do you have to say "Quack Therapy"? How do you know that this exercise is not efficatious?

As in the material you have brought forth here - the issue is Writing with the right hand. In light of dominance studies some 40 to 60 years later, there seems to be some basis for recommending that children learn to write with the right hand, as it draws on analytic processes which will assist intellectual development through the years.

I personally never heard that the class on the first day was to specify the right hand or that one was a writing and one a drawing hand. This doesn't really sound right to me, because the same children have been drawing with their dominant hands through kindergarten. I knew that Steiner was against training the children to be totally ambidextrous, but I still think of the exercises as harmonizing and balancing in their effects.

Also, the material you just quoted by Audrey McAllen specifies the need for parents and a medical doctor to be involved in these decisions and they should be made carefully and applied with love and discretion. NEVER should an individual child feel singled out for something or be made to consider something like this a "defect". If it makes him or her feel bad about him or herself, then a bigger problem is caused, to my way of thinking. There are many qualities which teachers and parents see in their children that are "problems" or "behavior problems" or "learning problems" and these need to be worked with, for sure, but the child should not be made to feel that he or she is "the problem"!

Maybe it is more of a problem with perspective and letting something like this get blown out of proportion. Maybe it gets worse when people get defensive.

Maybe people need to take more time to really investigate and examine their own techniques before applying them and be more willing to re-think them if necessary.

It takes a lot of communication between parents and teachers and between teachers and teachers to investigate each child's real needs. Sometimes there is too much hurry and not enough time taken. I personally don't think that any First Grade teacher can know enough about his or her children on the first day of class to do anything even remotely remedial. Even with the best case scenario of the teacher being in the school community for some months the previous year, meeting all of the families on a one to one basis and having lengthy discussions with the Kindergarten teacher and other faculty members, a teacher must face his or her class on the first day and honestly say to herself " Oh God, I have no idea who is in front of me and what I should do for them!" This, only the children can teach her in the course of eight years!

: ) Christine

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From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 2:05 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Steiner on left handedness

At 18:04 30.12.2003, Diana Winters wrote:

One final comment from me. I have just searched both google and the critics list archives (per Tarjei's suggestion) to locate an indication that Michaela Glockler has renounced or changed her position on switching left-handed children in Waldorf schools. I can find nothing along these lines. The best summary I can find of the traditional policy on left handers in Waldorf is summed up in a post from Dan to the critics list in 1997. If there is more recent info available, I would be very grateful to anyone who can locate it. I know of no evidence Glockler has changed her mind. I am glad to hear that Jan's child did not experience this; as I said, I believe the practice is slowly dying. I would also like to comment to Jan that what follows is not "lies" and "smears," but quotes from anthroposophical publications.

OK, I'll play the messenger boy here concerning a topic of which I must plead ignorance. Jean Yeager at the Anthroposophical Society of America has received the following response from Michaela Glöckler at the Goetheanum:

Dear Jean

I'm sorry to be late with my answer to your question from December. My view points to practice of the treatment of left-handed children, I've documented in the book: the guide to child health (ISBN-0-86315-390-9) which is now published newly. It is easy to get. It is true, that I speak against a left-handed switching and instead of that, a careful guided learning process of right-handed writing. Rudolf Steiner never recommended the left-handed switching. That means, that the child is able to use his left hand for all things it wants to. But it is helped to learn writing with his right hand. That is not more difficult to learn than to learn to play an instrument with the fingers of the left hand, which is in the beginning for right-handers more difficult. If this left-handed writing process is accompanied with love by teachers and parents, no problem can occurred. But it is necessary, that beside that the child is allowed to use his left hand along his / her wishes.

All the best for 2004

Yours,

Michaela Glöckler

Grit Müller (nach Diktat)
Mitarbeiterin der Medizinischen Sektion

Medizinische Sektion am Goetheanum
Michaela Glöckler, Dr. med.
Leitung
Postfach, CH-4143 Dornach 1
www.goetheanum.ch

Diana Winters just does not get it: that she has been mixing up my desciption of black and white magic, or left- and right-handed occultism, with hand-switching in the classroom. After having pointed out her misunderstanding several times, she wrote:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/anthroposophy_tomorrow/message/967 (scroll down to last paragraph)

I think that's sad. I think it's sad that it isn't possible to interest you in the topic. You are only indignant that your "right-handed magic" was attacked - the actual applications of such, the way ancient superstitions about the left and right hands, play out in real-life classrooms today, for children sitting in desks lined up in rows in the morning, isn't interesting to you.

Trying to clear it up this confusion seems to be of no use. It may be cruel to say so, but I think it's hilariously funny, and my amusement is perceived by her as terrible, terrible cruelty. Perhaps Diana and I are evolving that kinky occult sado-masochistic relationship Catherine MacCoun was fantasizing about when she wrote about Rudolf Steiner and Alice Sprengel in "Work On What Has Been Spoiled."

Anyway, I have sent the story about Diana's confusion to Glocker, who I hope will find this tale about how teaching lefties to write with their right hand has become a method to prevent the profilation of magicians who sacrifice virgins to Satan at midnight so entertaining that I'll get commissioned to write a play about it to be performed at the Goetheanum as a comic relief from Faust and the Mystery Dramas. "A Comedy of Occult Waldorf Errors" or something like that.

Many blissful cheers and laughs to you all,

Tarjei
http://uncletaz.com/

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From: winters_diana
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 8:04 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Hello everyone,

I've read the many replies to my earlier posts and will shortly answer them on critics. I can't handle any more mailing lists, but I guess I better finish what I started. Lots of people wrote to me weeks ago, and I just can't keep up. I know most of you sometimes read critics, or if you don't, you can pop over there if you're interested.

Tarjei, I very much appreciate your looking for this information about left-handedness, and communicating with Michaela Glockler etc. I would like to post her message that you sent here, on critics. Shall I assume that since you have posted it here, on a public Internet board, that this will be okay with her? Or should I expect reprisals? I could speak with her directly I suppose. Still thinking about this because I hate to waste time with a bunch of recriminations from anthroposophists regarding reposting of supposedly "private" mail posted on public forums. Do let me know. I can paraphrase her if it will avoid endless accusations and counter-accusations.

Briefly, though I would to clarify what you write here:

Diana Winters just does not get it: that she has been mixing up my desciption of black and white magic, or left- and right-handed occultism, with hand-switching in the classroom.

<snip>

Trying to clear it up this confusion seems to be of no use. It may be cruel to say so, but I think it's hilariously funny, and my amusement is perceived by her as terrible, terrible cruelty. Perhaps Diana and I are evolving that kinky occult sado-masochistic relationship Catherine MacCoun was fantasizing about when she wrote about Rudolf Steiner and Alice Sprengel in "Work On What Has Been Spoiled."

I have sent the story about Diana's confusion to Glocker, who I hope will find this tale about how teaching lefties to write with their right hand has become a method to prevent the profilation of magicians who sacrifice virgins to Satan at midnight so entertaining that I'll get commissioned to write a play about it to be performed at the Goetheanum as a comic relief from Faust and the Mystery Dramas. "A Comedy of Occult Waldorf Errors" or something like that.

Tarjei, I agree it would be amusing if this were the mistake I were making - and I can also see from my earlier comments how you might have thought that. I have not, however, tried to claim that Waldorf teachers are preventing use of the left hand in their students in order to prevent their dabbling in black magic. Since I used phrases like "applications in the classroom," I can see how you might have thought I am the one making this literal mistake.

Tarjei, I understand what your article was about and that you were not speaking of classroom practices. I also understand that Waldorf teachers, in the classroom, are not attempting to get their students to learn black or white magic - their reasons for switching left handers have nothing to do with this. They may or may not have an interest in magic of any kind, and are rarely trying to teach it to their students.

What I am claiming is that most likely the origin of the practices is the same. Not that some Waldorf teachers switch left-handers, today, consciously, for reasons related to magic, black or white. Many cultural practices and preferences have unexamined origins dating back centuries. Today's younger Waldorf teachers did not grow up in an era when left handed people were suspected of having something wrong with them, and if they are told by Michaela Glockler, for instance, that there are pedagogical reasons that writing with the right hand is preferable, that is probably why they are doing it. But they need to examine why, historically, left handers were often pressured to switch. It is hard not to notice that these practices derive from earlier eras when left-handers were indeed suspected of being defective or even demon-possessed. (Considering how quickly people here accuse anyone who disagrees with them of being demon-possessed or serving a "dark god," these superstitions are far from dead.)

In other words, Tarjei, I am talking about historical origins of things going on in different places - magical lodges . . . classrooms . . . Does anyone here find it terribly humorous to suggest that there are occult explanations for a lot of things going on in society today?! I think not, from the general discussions I read here!

Superstitions persist in many forms long after people are aware of their origin. I doubt Waldorf teachers are ever told in training, or consciously examine for themselves, ideas such as left = sinister = black magic, thus make little Johnny stop using his left hand! (I carp on the left = sinister connection because it is a direct quote from Glockler in support of switching left-handers.) My suggestion is that becoming aware of the unexamined superstition on which a practice was founded should lead to abandoning the practices that today have no use, in fact often cause harm.

The rest of the educational world did this a long time ago - caught on that nothing is wrong with use of the left hand and that children are caused unnecessary pain and confusion by forced switching.

I greatly appreciate your obtaining an updated statement from Michaela Glockler. It makes crystal clear that she has not in any way renounced switching of left handers. It makes no difference if it is done with "love," and it is hardly less abusive if the child is allowed to use his left hand for everything but writing. (That was always the case - unless an adult monitors the child 24/7, how are you going to stop them? The lefties who were switched often went on doing stuff with the dominant hand when the adults weren't watching.)

It is an abusive practice that should not be tolerated in any classroom.
see you later,
Diana

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From: holderlin66
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 9:34 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

--- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, winters_diana wrote:

In other words, Tarjei, I am talking about historical origins of things going on in different places - magical lodges . . . classrooms . . . Does anyone here find it terribly humorous to suggest that there are occult explanations for a lot of things going on in society today?! I think not, from the general discussions I read here!

Bradford comments;

'to suggest that there are occult explanations...' who are you kidding? The unfolding of crawling, standing, speaking, etheric body unfoldment, childhood illnesses- mumps, measles, chick-pox..change of teeth..premature overshadowing of the astral body, premature development of 11 and 10 (even 8 and 9) year old girls...Time and historical differences from the middle ages to the present in the maturity and ripeness of young girls, has radically changed. What type of acceleration is good? Are educators allowed to try to get the Barbie mentality of the premature development of the astral body, caught up with a real ripening of the child? We call this the science of education, with the science of understanding what type of physical/spiritual being has now merged with culture.

The nature of a speeded up culture with MOTH, like electronic light, sound, radio, t.v. and head set baby sitters, speeding up the process of premature adolescence, pressing the biological development into the mystery of the Eustachion and Fallopian relationships to pineal- pituitary and Light, 24/7, has also accelerated adolescence? Well we call this science and sometime we can walk it through for you so you get it.

We call Dr. Steiner's fully researched and first of its kind outline of actual unfolding development of how the uncoiling of the hidden memory of a pre-existing human being, as it unfolds itself, uncoils itself, unwinds itself through his/her etheric memory sheath that is connected to the cultural epochs, that we all experienced in ancient times, part of the scroll of the memory of humanity, we call this a Science. It is not merely the change of teeth and a physical expression, but the inner education of the child is unfolding in itself an etheric memory of mankind. There look the Plant unfolds and at first it is just green like every other plant, but we see, ah-ha, it will be a Rose or a Lily..the etheric is the very nature of us being particpants in mankind and human history. This is a science.

The Waldorf Curriculum is the first of its kind to understand that a child is not a Tabla Rosa or an empty scroll, but hidden in the unfolding development of a child are the lost experiences of ancient times. These would be part of the etheric growth that merges into ripening development with the astral body as children begin showing signs of overshadowing of the astral body as early as the 5th grade.

Here a social wrangling that arises prior to full blown adolescence shows itself. Some parents even promote the leopard skin sexy style short tea shirts and runway modeling of JonBenet Ramsey. Spoiling the emerging astral body and infecting it with premature and false desires for beauty, fame and the latest teen idol. Look at Michael Jackson today. The film "Donnie Darko" is an excellent study in failed education. But excuse us for understanding that Waldorf Education was as close to the science of the unfolding human blueprint as has yet been developed.

Now as to if you - If you - understand that a past incarnation could have found a soul very overtaxed, overindulged, overplayed, exhausting some of its forces and differing, resting, leaning on left handedness as an indicator, if you can grasp such an encompassing idea? Because when we look at the child, we look at a unique stellar composition, a unique system of indentity that has been brought back into manifestation; reconstituted. Bearing in its inherent nature the etheric memory of humanity as it has participated with us, with us in time and is expected, even in the classroom, it is expected that these children might have found their way under very specific destiny factors to your home, to a hospital in your neighborhood.

The incarnation of the child has found parents and collected, brought them together in advance, so that certain capacities that the child would like to develop further, as worked with their Angels before incarnation, finds the right Love - i.e.- hereditary stream to reconstitute itself and carry it's development further.

Given 1/10 of these parameters, the question is, do you understand that someone could very well have overtaxed themselves, over indulged or been very different than the one we see before us in the child? That leaning on the Left hand side was just a faint indicator. We leave it to the teachers and parents to grasp these things.

The only thing Steiner bravely did, was to hand such rich information over to people who fall away from clarity instead of growing towards understanding. The only thing Steiner did was to trust that the higher understanding of humanity would grow toward what the whole of the cosmos knows and the Angel of the child knows. So we are not required to lift our understanding up to the level of Angelic insight in the human sphere, even if it is handed to us. Because it is so hard to lift our intelligence up to humanism in its highest manifesation, we prefer denial.

So, as to understanding about magic and brotherhoods and blah, blah, blah.. I know for a fact that you wouldn't understand an Angelic idea, a gift from higher reason, unless it popped out of fortune cookie at a Chinese restaurant. Then, only then do we consider for 2 seconds of our lives the depth of coincidence and the patterns we might live in.

As for the first time Science of the education of our children and full physical, etheric, astral and ego unfolding scaffolding of psychology and education, you are years away, years of any grasp. In the meantime you cause more harm than good in your children and in your relationships by stubborn blindness.

As the Italians would say... Forrrgettt About it!

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From: eyecueco
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 12:52 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

--- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, holderlin66 wrote:
--- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, winters_diana wrote:

In other words, Tarjei, I am talking about historical origins of things going on in different places - magical lodges . . . classrooms . . . Does anyone here find it terribly humorous to suggest that there are occult explanations for a lot of things going on in society today?! I think not, from the general discussions I read here!

Bradford comments;

'to suggest that there are occult explanations...' who are you kidding? The unfolding of crawling, standing, speaking, etheric body unfoldment, childhood illnesses- mumps, measles, chick-pox..change of teeth..premature overshadowing of the astral body, premature development of 11 and 10 (even 8 and 9) year old girls...Time and historical differences from the middle ages to the present in the maturity and ripeness of young girls, has radically changed. What type of acceleration is good? Are educators allowed to try to get the Barbie mentality of the premature development of the astral body, caught up with a real ripening of the child? We call this the science of education, with the science of understanding what type of physical/spiritual being has now merged with culture.

The nature of a speeded up culture with MOTH, like electronic light, sound, radio, t.v. and head set baby sitters, speeding up the process of premature adolescence, pressing the biological development into the mystery of the Eustachion and Fallopian relationships to pineal- pituitary and Light, 24/7, has also accelerated adolescence? Well we call this science and sometime we can walk it through for you so you get it.

We call Dr. Steiner's fully researched and first of its kind outline of actual unfolding development of how the uncoiling of the hidden memory of a pre-existing human being, as it unfolds itself, uncoils itself, unwinds itself through his/her etheric memory sheath that is connected to the cultural epochs, that we all experienced in ancient times, part of the scroll of the memory of humanity, we call this a Science. It is not merely the change of teeth and a physical expression, but the inner education of the child is unfolding in itself an etheric memory of mankind. There look the Plant unfolds and at first it is just green like every other plant, but we see, ah-ha, it will be a Rose or a Lily..the etheric is the very nature of us being particpants in mankind and human history. This is a science.

The Waldorf Curriculum is the first of its kind to understand that a child is not a Tabla Rosa or an empty scroll, but hidden in the unfolding development of a child are the lost experiences of ancient times. These would be part of the etheric growth that merges into ripening development with the astral body as children begin showing signs of overshadowing of the astral body as early as the 5th grade.

Here a social wrangling that arises prior to full blown adolescence shows itself. Some parents even promote the leopard skin sexy style short tea shirts and runway modeling of JonBenet Ramsey. Spoiling the emerging astral body and infecting it with premature and false desires for beauty, fame and the latest teen idol. Look at Michael Jackson today. The film "Donnie Darko" is an excellent study in failed education. But excuse us for understanding that Waldorf Education was as close to the science of the unfolding human blueprint as has yet been developed.

Now as to if you - If you - understand that a past incarnation could have found a soul very overtaxed, overindulged, overplayed, exhausting some of its forces and differing, resting, leaning on left handedness as an indicator, if you can grasp such an encompassing idea? Because when we look at the child, we look at a unique stellar composition, a unique system of indentity that has been brought back into manifestation; reconstituted. Bearing in its inherent nature the etheric memory of humanity as it has participated with us, with us in time and is expected, even in the classroom, it is expected that these children might have found their way under very specific destiny factors to your home, to a hospital in your neighborhood.

The incarnation of the child has found parents and collected, brought them together in advance, so that certain capacities that the child would like to develop further, as worked with their Angels before incarnation, finds the right Love - i.e.- hereditary stream to reconstitute itself and carry it's development further.

Given 1/10 of these parameters, the question is, do you understand that someone could very well have overtaxed themselves, over indulged or been very different than the one we see before us in the child? That leaning on the Left hand side was just a faint indicator. We leave it to the teachers and parents to grasp these things.

The only thing Steiner bravely did, was to hand such rich information over to people who fall away from clarity instead of growing towards understanding. The only thing Steiner did was to trust that the higher understanding of humanity would grow toward what the whole of the cosmos knows and the Angel of the child knows. So we are not required to lift our understanding up to the level of Angelic insight in the human sphere, even if it is handed to us. Because it is so hard to lift our intelligence up to humanism in its highest manifesation, we prefer denial.

So, as to understanding about magic and brotherhoods and blah, blah, blah.. I know for a fact that you wouldn't understand an Angelic idea, a gift from higher reason, unless it popped out of fortune cookie at a Chinese restaurant. Then, only then do we consider for 2 seconds of our lives the depth of coincidence and the patterns we might live in.

As for the first time Science of the education of our children and full physical, etheric, astral and ego unfolding scaffolding of psychology and education, you are years away, years of any grasp. In the meantime you cause more harm than good in your children and in your relationships by stubborn blindness.

As the Italians would say... Forrrgettt About it!

Bradford,

STOP!
STOP!
STOP!

You are the one who is totally clueless!
If you don't get it about the issue of handedness and think the correct response is your typical jitter-bug of quotations, movie themes, poems and tomes, then you really are beyond help.

You insult Diane who is not a stupid woman, nor someone who has shown any ill will to anyone at anytime, then you top it off with nonsense, utter, absurd mish-mash nonsense.

Is this supposed to be a defense for changing handedness?

Did you, when you had a job in WE, attempt to change the leftie to a rightie?

Why would you defend this?

There is an indisputable correspondence between handedness and which hemisphere of the brain the Broca speech center is located. In 95% of right-handers, the left side of the brain is dominant for language. In 60-70% of left-handers, the left side of brain is used for language. Almost one half of the left-handed population have reversed cerebral lateralization, meaning the Broca Center is in their right hemisphere. 56% to 70% of left-handers have the same lateralization as right-handers. 40% of left handers have reversed lateralization. This gets even more interesting when reseraching inverted and non-inverted writing postures (meaning how the dominant hand is held when writing, in either what would be considered a normal position, or a C-curved position where the hand is bent back toward the body). In one study I have notes on 60% of left handed inverted writers were found to have the same lateralization as right handed writers while 1% of right-handed inverted writer were foundto have the same lateralization as left-handed writers.

There have been just too many studies done world-wide on handedness and the correspondence of the Broca speech center for far too many years for those involved with WE to justify ignorance.

Not only does the Broca area have a direction relationship with handedness, but, also controls voluntary eye movement, head rotation, and motor speech expression.

If the WE instructor gets involved with the handedness of a child in his or her care then that instructor is getting involved with how the brain in that child is developing, and that is not acceptable! Period.

Additionally, when anyone in education starts talking about 'love' instead of craft in one's discipline I find myself quite unhappy. What exactly is the objective, verifiable, measurable, outcome that verifies that 'love' has been used to accompanied a specific 'process' or activity? Yes, of course love should stand behind the practice of one's craft/discipline/profession whether it be that of a doctor, nurse, therapist, teacher, etc., but, 'love' is not the craft itself. That is why teachers in public schools in this country, at least, have to be certified byway of a Practicum after having gone through a degree program in the secular world, i.e., to practice application their craft, not their 'love' for children or teaching.

Please!

I stand with Audrey McAllen on this issue of handedness. If any teacher is going to involve his or herself with the changing of handedness in a child it had better be done as a result of diagnosis by a medical doctor, specifically a neurologist.

Lastly, when you try and defend what is wrong in WE by implying that WE is the result of Steiner's thoroug research, you are just kidding yourself. RS gave certain indications, that is all. He was very busy. He was not a school administrator, nor did he write curriculum. He was a kind responder. When Molte came up to him and said he wanted a school for his factory workers children, Steiner, as usual, responded, to the best of his tiem and ability. He tapped people like W.J. Stein on the shoulder and asked them to join the effort. He trusted them to work out of their intelligence and inner forces from a perspective of spiritual science. He vistied the schools, advised, but, he did not intent what when on to be etched into stone forever. He was a man of his time. He kept up with his time and place. He walked in two worlds. I wish that I could say the same for WE today. If you think that Steiner would just sluff off the brain reserach that has come done in the past decades, think again! And if you think that he would defend what has happened and continues to happen in some schools because of some very unthinking teachers, who lack common sense or imagination, and would even attempt to justify the kinds of things that go on such as what happened to Lisa Ercola's child Olivia, think again! I do not think I can speak for Steiner, but I have studied Anthroposphy and WE depth and have implimented WE mongrams enough into my own curriculum with success and postive outcome to be able to 'get it' about he was trying to do WITH HIS INDICATIONS.

We certainly need to defend Steiner when he has been slandered, but, we are morally and ethically obligated to look objectively at the criticisms being leveled, and when possible (with Peter S. it is not possible because he is using learned propaganda techniques to manipulate WC just like he and his affilates use so many other organizations to fufill their politcal agenda) address these criticisms with thoughtful consideration. The issue of changing handedness in a child in the 21st century is one of those criticisms and WE doesn't have a leg to stand on in this matter.

Does it ever occur to people like you that the kind of absurd defense you have carelessly thrown out here is the very thing that has kept what is good and true and wonderful and healing about WE from reaching the multitude of children who are being destroyed by our schools and society today.

You owe Diane an big apology for the insults you have slung at her here today!

You owe the rest of us an apology for your untamed horse which is trampling the sprouting seedling of intelligent dialogue in the gardent of AT. (You do know that you should be riding it, instead of it riding you, right? :-)

Paulina

...................................................................................................................................

From: holderlin66
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 1:41 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness


--- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com,
eyecueco wrote:

You owe Diane an big apology for the insults you have slung at her here today!

You owe the rest of us an apology for your untamed horse which is trampling the sprouting seedling of intelligent dialogue in the gardent of AT. (You do know that you should be riding it, instead of it riding you, right? :-)

Paulina

Bradford responds;

There Paulina, don't you feel better now that you got all that pent up antipathy off your chest. I sure do. Plus I truly admire how you went much deeper and elaborated some of the background of the Borca organ and the C curve of the hand. Left Brained and Right brained dominance at least brings some of the vast well springs of Waldorf Education up to the level of current research. I applaud the way you were able to kick me with your antipathy, and rise to the occasion. Some times good ole anger brings out the best in us eh? But it has been latent for a long time and I was tired of just watching it flit by without using my swatter.

Now that that is over with, Paulina has given a wonderful opportunity to uncover many of the secrets of education that are just left out of any discussion when it comes to the Child's unfolding development and catching the various indications from the nature of the child. Be glad dear Paulina that I consider your contribution, kicking and screaming at me, a very fine - potent and at times truly marvelous post.

Keep up the good work. Especially with that finely tuned sense of sympathy and antipathy to different modes of expression. It serves you well.

Oh, by the way, I owe no one an apology.

Bradford

...................................................................................................................................

From: eyecueco
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:26 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

--- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, holderlin66 wrote:

Bradford responds;

There Paulina, don't you feel better now that you got all that pent up antipathy off your chest. I sure do.

Actually, I don't have any pent up antipathy, Bradford. I've always been straight forward about my postion on how you express your frustrations of the world not turning on an orbit to your liking.

Plus I truly admire how you went much deeper and elaborated some of the background of the Borca organ and the C curve of the hand.

The C curve is just my own verbal effort to give an image of the inverted hand, it is not a term used in the domain of brain or handedness research.

Left Brained and Right brained dominance at least brings some of the vast well springs of Waldorf Education up to the level of current research.

Really?
How so?

I applaud the way you were able to kick me with your antipathy, and rise to the occasion. Some times good ole anger brings out the best in us eh? But it has been latent for a long time and I was tired of just watching it flit by without using my swatter.

I'm not angry, Bardford, just irritated with your antics.

Now that that is over with, Paulina has given a wonderful opportunity to uncover many of the secrets of education that are just left out of any discussion when it comes to the Child's unfolding development and catching the various indications from the nature of the child.

 

"Secrets of education?"
And to what discussion of the child's unfolding development are you referring?I am of the opinion that in the 21st century we have abundant understanding of the child's unfolding development .If all Waldorf teachers were required, as Sunbridge College now requires, thanks to New York state, to include modern educational psychology courses in the teacher certification program there would be much less of a problem with the likes of the WC folks.

Be glad dear Paulina that I consider your contribution, kicking and screaming at me, a very fine - potent and at times truly marvelous post.

Don't smooze me, Brad. I can be had, but I 'aint' cheap.
Bring it on.

Keep up the good work. Especially with that finely tuned sense of sympathy and antipathy to different modes of expression. It serves you well.

Ok, clueless, here is your assignment:

1. Take a piece of unlined paper.
2. Take a pencil.
3. Take a straight edge
4. With the paper turned horizontally, draw a line across the paper with the straight edge.
5. On one end (left or right, who cares) write 'Antipathy' and on the opposite end mark the line 'Sympathy'.

Now, look at that line. SEE all that empty space running across that papge between the two words in opposition to each other?

OK, next...

6. Take a ruler, and using short verticle lines divide the empty horizontal space into 1/2" divisions, better yet, 1/4", 1/8" or 1/16" divisions.

When finished look at all the varying vertical positions that are represented by those vertical pencil mark between 'Sympathy' and 'Antipathy'.

Can't speak for you, but I don't function from either extreme end, and if you cannot identify objectively which point along that continum I am speaking from on the issue of handedness, then please don't just cop out by throwing around meaningless terms such as 'antipathy', 'sympathy', and 'anger'.

Oh, by the way, I owe no one an apology.

Oh, Brad, you really should just go into town and have a beer. Try the Continental Club. Some of the musicians featured there are really worth hearing. I know at least one who can teach you a thing or two about sympathy.

Paulina

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 2:33 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Laughing my you know what off!!

My 10-year-old just peered over my shoulder, seeing my fascinated attention to this message, and read a bit of Bradford-ese:

uncoiling of the hidden memory of a pre-existing human being, as it unfolds itself, uncoils itself, unwinds itself through his/her etheric memory sheath

He comments:
"I don't remember that."

Me (startled):
"You don't remember what?"

He says:
"I'm not sure about the pre-existing part, but I definitely don't remember unwinding an etheric memory sheath before I was born."

I'll try to get back to you later Bradford :)
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Sune Nordwall
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 6:32 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

Hi Diana,

Thought you had gone, as you said you would. Glad to see you're still here!

You write:

Hello everyone,

I've read the many replies to my earlier posts and will shortly answer them on critics. I can't handle any more mailing lists, but I guess I better finish what I started. Lots of people wrote to me weeks ago, and I just can't keep up. I know most of you sometimes read critics, or if you don't, you can pop over there if you're interested.

You wrote here. Why not post your answers here, and send a CC to the WC instead?

I'd very much appreciate an answer here on this list to my answer to you.

Best wishes,

Sune

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Sat Jan 17, 2004 6:00 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Sune:

Glad to see you're still here!

<snip>

I'd very much appreciate an answer here on this list to my answer to you.

Sune, I appreciated the Christmas greetings, and I'm sorry not to reply. I will try. Various people wrote to me both here and offlist and it is very time-consuming. I re-read your post to me from a couple of weeks ago, and I have to say, I find you difficult to follow at times. (I confess I almost never follow your links. There are too many.) Best I can tell, you want me to explain in a general way, how I can possibly have anything to do with other Waldorf critics, if I appreciate Peter Staudenmaier's contributions. You quote me thanking Peter on the WC list for his contributions and say that you have sympathy for me as a person, except for this.

Sune, I really don't think it would be very helpful for me to attempt to summarize Peter's views versus your views, post a long analysis of who said what when, and whether one of you is "lying." I do not believe Peter is lying, but I am happy to admit that both you and Peter know more on these topics than I do. I do find Peter's work convincing, and don't believe he has ever "forged" anything or misrepresented Steiner. I believe you have been asked a number of times to document evidence that Peter "forged" something. I notice in your last post, it is now a "spiritual forgery." This is just a concept I really cannot work with! You will have to forgive me if on these higher spiritual realms, I wander cluelessly. I do not know what a "spiritual forgery" is so I cannot judge whether Peter might be guilty of it :) On the mundane, earthly level, it seems to me you would have quite a bit of work to do to justify your claims of either "forgery" or "libel."

If you want me to get into the topic, you will have to ask me something more specific than just, in general, how dare I ever say anything nice about Peter Staudenmaier?
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Sat Jan 17, 2004 5:23 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Bradford, I appreciate your reply, but have no idea what you are talking about, and probably can't make what you would consider meaningful spiritual contributions to this. (This comes as no surprise to you.)

As best I can discern, you have been a Waldorf teacher, but are not at the present (you just can't be, or you couldn't spend all day writing this stuff)? When you taught, did you try to make the left-handed kids use the right hand?

The Waldorf Curriculum is the first of its kind to understand that a child is not a Tabla Rosa

I hope the "Tabla Rosa" is perhaps an obscure Rosicrucian reference (in a later post you refer to an "etheric scroll" we bring with us at birth?), and not your misspelling of "tabula rasa" (the "blank slate"). If you are referring to the blank slate, Waldorf is certainly not the "first of its kind" to view the child as "not a tabula rasa." Philosophers, educators, scientists, poets - parents - have debated this for centuries. Nobody believes today that the child is a tabula rasa. Try Steven Pinker.

What Waldorf does is fetishize a particular, supposedly universal course of spiritual development that is actually of Eurocentric derivation. Teachers straining to peer into children's souls determined to see a revelation of ancient spiritual truths are really asking a great deal of a child.

hidden in the unfolding development of a child are the lost experiences of ancient times.

This is a romantic notion imposed on Waldorf children – which many resist (explaining some of the behavior problems, IMO). No – do not ask the children to provide you a glimpse of "lost experiences of ancient times." Get your spiritual fix some other way! (this list seems to work pretty well for you).

Some parents even promote the leopard skin sexy style short tea shirts and runway modeling of JonBenet Ramsey.

I don't have a daughter – if I did, I'd have a problem with all the sexy clothes for little girls. Why do you go on and on about JohBenet Ramsey?

I know for a fact that you wouldn't understand an Angelic idea, a gift from higher reason, unless it popped out of fortune cookie at a Chinese restaurant.

Oh – isn't the stuff in fortune cookies true? My 10-year-old thinks it may be.

Ok, Brad, I don't talk to angels, and you do. You better hope I'm not your karma. Maybe next time I'll be the teacher, and you'll be the left-handed kid.

Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:37 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

At 17:04 15.01.2004, Diana wrote:

Tarjei, I very much appreciate your looking for this information about left-handedness, and communicating with Michaela Glockler etc. I would like to post her message that you sent here, on critics. Shall I assume that since you have posted it here, on a public Internet board, that this will be okay with her?

I have no idea. I didn't write to her; Jean Yeager did and sent me the correspondence.

Or should I expect reprisals?

Don't have a clue, but I doubt it.

I could speak with her directly I suppose. Still thinking about this because I hate to waste time with a bunch of recriminations from anthroposophists regarding reposting of supposedly "private" mail posted on public forums.

Supposedly private mail? Could you explain? If I subscribed to the Waldorf Survivors list as a mole under an assumed name and published what I found juicy, how would Dan and Gary react?

Do let me know. I can paraphrase her if it will avoid endless accusations and counter-accusations.

I'll forward your question, being the messenger boy again. When do I get a promotion and raise for playing the gopher?

Tarjei, I agree it would be amusing if this were the mistake I were making - and I can also see from my earlier comments how you might have thought that. I have not, however, tried to claim that Waldorf teachers are preventing use of the left hand in their students in order to prevent their dabbling in black magic. Since I used phrases like "applications in the classroom," I can see how you might have thought I am the one making this literal mistake.

OK, I'll temporarily grant you the benefit of the doubt.

It is hard not to notice that these practices derive from earlier eras when left-handers were indeed suspected of being defective or even demon-possessed.

There you go! So you do indeed believe that thwe hand-switching is linked to the technical expressions used to describe occult practices!

(Considering how quickly people here accuse anyone who disagrees with them of being demon-possessed or serving a "dark god," these superstitions are far from dead.)

Benefit of the doubt withdrawn.

In other words, Tarjei, I am talking about historical origins of things going on in different places - magical lodges . . . classrooms . . . Does anyone here find it terribly humorous to suggest that there are occult explanations for a lot of things going on in society today?! I think not, from the general discussions I read here!

Personally, I find it amusing when people associate occultism with something spooky that goes bump in the night. They've ben reading too much of Stephen King.

Superstitions persist in many forms long after people are aware of their origin. I doubt Waldorf teachers are ever told in training, or consciously examine for themselves, ideas such as left = sinister = black magic, thus make little Johnny stop using his left hand! (I carp on the left = sinister connection because it is a direct quote from Glockler in support of switching left-handers.) My suggestion is that becoming aware of the unexamined superstition on which a practice was founded should lead to abandoning the practices that today have no use, in fact often cause harm.

In other words, you do assume that switching lefties into righties (or whatever they were doing or not doing) was founded on the "unfounded superstition" of black and white magic and the technical expressions used for such practices: "left-handed" and "right-handed" ?

The rest of the educational world did this a long time ago - caught on that nothing is wrong with use of the left hand and that children are caused unnecessary pain and confusion by forced switching.

I have to plead ignorance of pedagogy and educational practice, whether it's Waldorf, Montessory, public or whatever.

Cheers,

Tarjei
http://uncletaz.com/

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Thu Jan 15, 2004 12:50 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

I wrote:

I have no idea. I didn't write to her; Jean Yeager did and sent me the correspondence.

Oh shit, sorry about that: I did send Glocker a copy of my mail to Jean Yeager, so I have written to her. But I don't know who she is or what she thinks or how she reacts.

Tarjei

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Sat Jan 17, 2004 5:29 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Tarjei:

I have no idea. I didn't write to her; Jean Yeager did and sent me the correspondence.

Right – if I understand correctly, it was sent privately, between two individuals, or three. And you had no compunction about popping it up on this public list. This is what you insist Waldorf critics should never do – right? I agree with you, actually, just noting there is a bit of a double standard here.

I'll forward your question, being the messenger boy again. When do I get a promotion and raise for playing the gopher?

Thanks! We'll consider your compensation :) What would you like to be promoted to?

(I wrote:)
It is hard not to notice that these practices derive from earlier eras when left-handers were indeed suspected of being defective or even demon-possessed.

Tarjei:
There you go! So you do indeed believe that thwe hand-switching is linked to the technical expressions used to describe occult practices!

Tarjei – think about the meaning of "derive from earlier eras." Sometimes something widely believed in an earlier era carries over, filters down, and is applied in various contexts, long after people have forgotten why it was originally done. A general cultural belief. A piece of the Zeitgeist. (Isn't that an actual spiritual being?) :) Yes? It doesn't mean the teacher does it specifically because she wants to stop her children from black magic – the teacher probably doesn't know or care about magic, black or white. It means – perhaps – that she believes something is bad about left-handedness. It was so for centuries. It was assumed. Well into the 20th century, lefties were switched, the reasons evolving slowly from old beliefs about left-handedness being a mark of the devil. The practice continued with various justifications, and only slowly dropped off. It has dropped off in Waldorf schools, too – but much more slowly. Teachers often don't know the origins of some things they are teaching, or methods they are using – even Waldorf teachers who have usually had a big serving of anthroposophy in teacher training. (I've talked to a number of Waldorf teachers who tried hard to keep their hands over their ears, so to speak, during all the anthroposophic indoctrination in their teacher training classes.)

But regardless of the individual teacher's level of understanding of it, Waldorf pedagogy is occult derived. Please don't say it's not so, always yak-yakking here about Steiner reading the Akasha. A prejudice against the left-handed would carry influence longer than it might elsewhere. The movement is a bastion of resistance to change from outside influences, and rejects many scientific advances. That's fine. Can't have it both ways, though. If you want to reject modern science (which debunked the need to make a left- handed child use their right hand) for occult beliefs about bad qualities associated with left-handedness, why hoot at me for suggesting the occult connection? (Y'all on this list chat late into the night about the occult origin of everything else in the world!!)

Bradford went on an on about karmic weakness. This is the Steiner version of left handedness being some sort of defect. It's an improvement over stuff like mark of the devil. In the era of disability and remediation, left-handedness became a "weakness." Many things previously considered "sinful" became "diseases."

Benefit of the doubt withdrawn.

LOL!! Really. I sat here laughing when I saw my benefit of the doubt withdrawn! You are so funny, Tarjei, I like you a lot. You can dish it out and you can usually take it :)

Personally, I find it amusing when people associate occultism with something spooky that goes bump in the night. They've ben reading too much of Stephen King.

I've never read Stephen King.

In other words, you do assume that switching lefties into righties (or whatever they were doing or not doing) was founded on the "unfounded superstition" of black and white magic and the technical expressions used for such practices: "left-handed" and "right-handed" ?

Tarjei – you put "unfounded superstition" in quotes. If you think the left/bad, right/good scheme is not an unfounded superstition, but instead an "occult truth," an insight into deeper spiritual realities that dogged materialists like me can't access – if this is so, then why would it be wrong to apply this insight in a pedagogical context? Why would you fight me on this? Isn't the rest of Waldorf derived from occult insights? Bradford seems to think so. I sat in Waldorf faculty meetings for 2 ½ years, and correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe I heard the teachers mention that Waldorf pedagogy derived from Steiner's occult insights.

cheers to you too,
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Sat Jan 17, 2004 6:33 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

At 14:29 17.01.2004, Diana wrote:

Tarjei:

I have no idea. I didn't write to her; Jean Yeager did and sent me the correspondence.

Right – if I understand correctly, it was sent privately, between two individuals, or three. And you had no compunction about popping it up on this public list. This is what you insist Waldorf critics should never do – right? I agree with you, actually, just noting there is a bit of a double standard here.

It was sent as a response to your inquiry. When it comes to subjects about which I must plead ignorance, I only post what I'm told as the gopher and messenger boy I am. Double standard? The private lists you're referring to weren't mine. Wasn't it the owners/moderators who complained?

Thanks! We'll consider your compensation :) What would you like to be promoted to?

Internet guru with an occult twist.

Well into the 20th century, lefties were switched, the reasons evolving slowly from old beliefs about left-handedness being a mark of the devil.

What is your source of reference here, about left-handed people bearing the
mark of the devil in former centuries?

The movement is a bastion of resistance to change from outside influences, and rejects many scientific advances.

What movement is that?

That's fine. Can't have it both ways, though. If you want to reject modern science

If I have expressed a desire to reject modern science, please quote me, Diana, or demonstrate instances when I have uttered such things. I do object to certain applications of science for ethical reasons, such as weapons production (especially weapons of mass destruction), cruel animal research, and there are areas such as cloning that I know too little about, but not because I refuse to learn about it. I consider blind and unbridled enthusiasm for every aspect of modern science to be questionable and potentially dangerous. Is that what you mean?

(which debunked the need to make a left-handed child use their right hand) for occult beliefs about bad qualities associated with left-handedness, why hoot at me for suggesting the occult connection?

Because in occultism, left and right are technical expressions, just like they are symbolic expressions in politics. If you mix these things up indiscriminately, you'll end up claiming that anthroposophists must be politically conservative because "left-wing" is a dirty word.

I've never read Stephen King.

You don't have to. Christian bookstores are full of warnings against the spiritual world, and interest in it will lead to seances and Satan-worship and even worser things and you'll get gobbled up like a cookie in the mouth of the apocalyptic beast.

In other words, you do assume that switching lefties into righties (or whatever they were doing or not doing) was founded on the "unfounded superstition" of black and white magic and the technical expressions used for such practices: "left-handed" and "right-handed" ?

Tarjei – you put "unfounded superstition" in quotes.

Of course. Good and evil exist, gods and demons exist, black and white magic exist. It's superstitious to believe that it doesn't exist.

If you think the left/bad, right/good scheme is not an unfounded superstition, but instead an "occult truth," an insight into deeper spiritual realities that dogged materialists like me can't access – if this is so, then why would it be wrong to apply this insight in a pedagogical context? Why would you fight me on this?

You still don't get it! Left and right are technical terms in occultism, just like they are symbolic terms in politics. The British are not evil because they drive on the left hand side of the road. And Americans are not good because they drive on the right. Nobody believes that or has ever believed that. The Swedes switched from left hand traffic (like the British) to right hand traffic (like most of the rest of us) overnight in 1967. Nobody said it was cruel and should be forbidden. I may not know much about pedagogy, but I know a little about traffic.

Isn't the rest of Waldorf derived from occult insights?

I don't think the textbooks are written by occultists if that's what you mean. Rudolf Steiner based everything he did on occult insights because he was an occultist, and helping to found the first Waldorf school was one of them. Beyond that, what you people at the WC and the PLANS are reading into this and how it corresponds with reality in Waldorf is beyond me. It's not within my field of expertise.

Bradford seems to think so. I sat in Waldorf faculty meetings for 2 ½ years, and correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe I heard the teachers mention that Waldorf pedagogy derived from Steiner's occult insights.

Of course. Anything wrong with that? The physical world is, after all, the projection or external expression of an occult, or spiritual, reality behind it. Without the spirit, without the occult, we would not exist.

This does not mean that everything goes bump in the night.

Cheers,

Tarjei
http://uncletaz.com/

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Sat Jan 17, 2004 8:29 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Tarjei:

The private lists you're referring to weren't mine. Wasn't it the owners/moderators who complained?

Never mind. I don't remember who complained. I am probably guilty of lumping all anthroposophists together here J

What would you like to be promoted to?

Internet guru with an occult twist.

You're that already, think outside the box, Tarjei.

What is your source of reference here, about left-handed people bearing the mark of the devil in former centuries?

I'll do another post tomorrow. I'm no historian and can't vouch for their accuracy, but it's certainly all over the web. Meanwhile, here's Michaela Glockler herself:

"Qualities of right and left: It is not a matter of indifference whether it is the right or the left hand which is used for writing. ... Values of right and left are expressed in the words "dexterity" from the Latin dexter, a right hand, and "sinister" from the Latin for left hand. Many more examples of this kind can be found in other languages and cultures."

[Glockler, Michaela and Wolfgang Goebel. A Guide to Child Health. Trans. Polly Lawson. Edinburgh: Anthroposophic Press, Floris Books, 1990, p. 314]

The movement is a bastion of resistance to change from outside influences, and rejects many scientific advances.

What movement is that?

Anthroposophy. Waldorf.

If I have expressed a desire to reject modern science, please quote me, Diana, or demonstrate instances when I have uttered such things.

Let's not get into this – again, perhaps I was unfairly responding to you as a representative of anthroposophy. (Steiner, of course, spoke against modern science frequently, and on this list, you are recently arguing that Steiner was a saint and couldn't have been wrong or even had human imperfections. But never mind.) I don't know where you, Tarjei Straume, stand on all modern science.

I am tempted to get this list into a serious tizzy sharing my views on cloning. Very tempting, but time's a-wasting. :)

In my comments about "rejecting modern science," I was referring to the fact that Waldorf has been slow to catch up with the modern understanding that left-handedness is a normal variation and does not require any form of pedagogical or medical correction.

Let's see . . . I'm with you on weapons production, Tarjei.

Because in occultism, left and right are technical expressions,

And technical expressions have no derivation? They come out of the ether? Actually, they probably come out of that old pictorial consciousness, excuse me, Pictorial Consciousness, that anthroposophists love to evoke, those glorious dreamy days of the "old atavistic consciousness" . . . where left handers were seen as defective. IMO the basis of it is simple. (Now these are just my musings, don't ask me to back it up.) Left handers are different, because there are far fewer of them, and people always think something is wrong with someone who is different and feel threatened. It's the same reason they tossed babies born with deformities (and sometimes twins) off clifftops.

I read one interesting theory of the fear of the left-handed: we originally began shaking hands with the right hand in order to show that we have no weapon concealed, or if we did, we'd need to draw it with the left hand, and for most of us (the right-handed), that would be clumsy. But if a person offered the left hand to shake, they could still get at their sword with the right hand; hence if someone offered you their left hand to shake, it was seen as threatening.

I've never read Stephen King.

You don't have to. Christian bookstores are full of warnings against the spiritual world,

Tarjei, I don't go in Christian bookstores very often either. But I was raised Christian Scientist, and they are always freaking out that occultists are hexing them or something. They call it "animal magnetism," and they also believe, similar to anthroposophy, that thoughts are real deeds and someone can harm you at a distance by thinking bad thoughts about you.

Of course. Good and evil exist, gods and demons exist, black and white magic exist.

Love that pictorial consciousness. Good and evil, black and white, left and right.

The physical world is, after all, the projection or external expression of an occult, or spiritual, reality

I'm just curious, do you use the words "occult" and "spiritual" as synonyms? I see the sense in which you mean this, but I think there are more commonly understood meanings as well. I do not just mean that to some people "occult" means things that go bump in the night, but also, some spiritual people are not so interested in all the things that are supposedly "hidden," uncovering secrets and conspiracies, as occultists seem to enjoy.

To things that go bump in the night, Tarjei,
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Sun Jan 18, 2004 7:19 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

At 05:29 18.01.2004, Diana wrote:

What would you like to be promoted to?

Internet guru with an occult twist.

You're that already, think outside the box, Tarjei.

That would be off-topic. But try that one on Joel. He also likes to tell people how to think.

The movement is a bastion of resistance to change from outside influences, and rejects many scientific advances.

What movement is that?

Anthroposophy. Waldorf.

Can you cite a few scientific advances that the anhtoposophical movement as a whole, and the Waldorf movement as a whole, has rejected that shouldn't have been rejected and why?

(Steiner, of course, spoke against modern science frequently, and on this list, you are recently arguing that Steiner was a saint and couldn't have been wrong or even had human imperfections. But never mind.) I don't know where you, Tarjei Straume, stand on all modern science.

Can you quote Steiner where he spoke against 'modern science', or are you getting it mixed up with his critique of materialistic thinking in modern science?

And while you're at it, can you quote me saying that Steiner was never wrong and did not have human imperfections, or are you getting this mixed up with my argument that Steiner was not a cruel sadomasochist, which is not a human flaw, but a subhuman perversion?

In my comments about "rejecting modern science," I was referring to the fact that Waldorf has been slow to catch up with the modern understanding that left-handedness is a normal variation and does not require any form of pedagogical or medical correction.

Let's see . . . I'm with you on weapons production, Tarjei.

So you reject modern science then?

Because in occultism, left and right are technical expressions,

And technical expressions have no derivation?

Technical expressions belong in scientific contexts. We're talking about spiritual science here.

They come out of the ether? Actually, they probably come out of that old pictorial consciousness, excuse me, Pictorial Consciousness, that anthroposophists love to evoke, those glorious dreamy days of the "old atavistic consciousness" . . .

If you read Steiner meticulously, you will discover that he took a firm stand against the reawakening of atavistic clairvoyance, which properly belongs to bygone eras. If "anthroposophists" like love to evoke that sort of thing, they are not students of Steiner's approach to the supernatural.

where left handers were seen as defective. IMO the basis of it is simple. (Now these are just my musings, don't ask me to back it up.)

I'm not like you and Joel, so I don't tell anyone what to think, how to pray, what to write, or what to "back up." This left- and right-handedness is, as I have said, outside my field of competence; I'll leave the debate to the experts. The jury may still be out, I don't know.

Left handers are different, because there are far fewer of them, and people always think something is wrong with someone who is different and feel threatened. It's the same reason they tossed babies born with deformities (and sometimes twins) off clifftops.

So perhaps Waldorf teachers would have liked to toss left-anded children off clifftops when switching them wasn't successful if they'd get away with it?

I read one interesting theory of the fear of the left-handed: we originally began shaking hands with the right hand in order to show that we have no weapon concealed, or if we did, we'd need to draw it with the left hand, and for most of us (the right-handed), that would be clumsy. But if a person offered the left hand to shake, they could still get at their sword with the right hand; hence if someone offered you their left hand to shake, it was seen as threatening.

By the same token, I hope all right-handed people who shake my hand use their left hands for their handkerchiefs so I won't get all their germs. People should not shake hands with the same hand they sneeze and cough into. Fear of left hands may be linked to fear of germs.

I'm just curious, do you use the words "occult" and "spiritual" as synonyms?

Yes, basically.

I see the sense in which you mean this, but I think there are more commonly understood meanings as well. I do not just mean that to some people "occult" means things that go bump in the night, but also, some spiritual people are not so interested in all the things that are supposedly "hidden," uncovering secrets and conspiracies, as occultists seem to enjoy.

So the spiritual people you describe here are interested in spiritual phenomena that are not hidden, i.e. imperceptible to the five physical senses? Their God or guardian angel or whatever is a being they can see with their eyes and hear with their ears and perhaps record on a video or a tape recorder?

Secrets and conspiracies are things that interest everybody, not only anthroposophists.

To things that go bump in the night, Tarjei,
Diana

OK, Sleep with your light on and catch the spooks on camera to make sure they're not occult.

Cheers,

Tarjei
http://uncletaz.com/

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Sun Jan 18, 2004 9:57 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

At 05:29 18.01.2004, Diana wrote:

(Steiner, of course, spoke against modern science frequently,

And Steiner says:

"There would be one way, to be sure, of avoiding mention of the personal element: that of presenting, explicitly, every detail that proves that the statements in this book really agree, with every forward step of modern science."
- An Outline of Occult Science, Preface to the First Edition

"- Our present time cannot speak about the facts of nature in the same way as Jacob Boehme spoke about them. But today also there is a point of view which brings the way of thinking of Jacob Boehme close to a conception of the world that takes account of modern science. One need not lose the spirit when one finds in nature only what is natural. It is true that today there are many who think that one must slip into a shallow, dry materialism if one accepts the “facts” discovered by natural science without further ado. I myself stand completely upon the ground of this natural science."
- Mysticism at the Dawn of the Modern Age, Epilogue

"The author of this book is sure that any person, taking his stand on the basis of the science of the present day, will find that it contains nothing that he will be unable to accept. He knows that all the requirements of modern science can be compiled with, and for this very reason the method adopted here of presenting the facts of the supersensible world supplies its own justification."
- Theosophy, From the Prefaces to the First,Second, and Third Editions

"Let us really follow in the footsteps of these explorers who appear as monumental figures in the development of modern science!"
- Christianity As Mystical Fact, Points of View

"In modern Science man is understood as a true reality only in respect of his physical nature. He must be recognized further as etheric, astral and spiritual or ‘Ego’ man and then Science will become the basis of religious life."
- Cosmology, Religion and Philosophy, Chepter 1: The Three Steps of
Anthroposophy

"Someone can easily believe, for example, that some statement or other contradicts certain facts established by modern science. In reality, there is no such thing as a scientific fact that contradicts spiritual science; but there can easily seem to be contradictions unless scientific conclusions are consulted abundantly and without prejudice. The student will find that the more open-mindedly he compares spiritual science with positive scientific achievements, the more clearly is complete accord to be seen."
- Knowledge of the Higher Worlds, Preface to the Third Edition

Tarjei Straume
http://www.uncletaz.com/anthrocritics.html

"The worst readers are those who proceed like plundering soldiers: they pick up a few things they use, soil and confuse the rest, and blaspheme the whole." - Friedrich Nietzsche, Mixed Opinions and Maxims

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Sun Jan 18, 2004 9:03 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Tarjei:

Can you cite a few scientific advances that the anhtoposophical movement as a whole, and the Waldorf movement as a whole, has rejected that shouldn't have been rejected and why?

<snip>

Can you quote Steiner where he spoke against 'modern science',

No. I'm not here for a far-ranging discussion on everything wrong (or right) with Waldorf, or to dice up everything Steiner said pro and con on modern science. Such discussions have occurred on the critics list many, many times and can easily be found there. I'm trying to finish this business with you re: left-handers in Waldorf schools. (I see quotes up ahead. Sorry, I just don't have time for a quote war.)

I can quickly suggest people check out this recent post on critics.

And while you're at it, can you quote me saying that Steiner was never wrong

Nope. That's between you guys. I was just explaining why I may have assumed (perhaps incorrectly, if so I apologize), from your recent postings here, which I have only skimmed and not followed these intricate arguments in-depth, that what Steiner says on science, as on most topics, you are likely in sympathy with. (A convoluted sentence, hopefully you get my drift – as another poster here said, I sometimes read Tarjei posts and think ruefully that your English is better than mine.)

If you read Steiner meticulously, you will discover that he took a firm stand against the reawakening of atavistic clairvoyance,

Oh, I know he did.

One frequent area of confusion, I think, is that when anthroposophists talk about "anthroposophy," they each have their own interpretation, or often a very personal relationship, to the ideas, to their own understanding of the movement, etc., including fierce disagreements with other anthroposophists. They pick and choose among appealing Steiner quotes - and become very offended when someone points out that other Steiner quotes contradict their personal favorites.

When critics speak of "anthroposophy," we take an outsider's perspective, and speak of what we hear, see, and understand we hear anthroposophists saying – in public forums, in faculty meetings at Waldorf schools, etc. This difference leads anthroposophists to often bristle at us and say, "That's not anthroposophy." Who are we to judge what's anthroposophy, not being anthroposophists? We take a more sociological, descriptive approach: "Anthroposophists often say or do so-and-so," and that, to us, is . . . anthroposophy. The movement. The public pronouncements, the observable reality. (Not that we observe it without bias, but that's just the position we are in.) I think most critics would readily admit we can't make sense of your internal squabbles.

Anyway – that was a preface to saying, sure, Steiner spoke against atavistic clairvoyance, belonging to a bygone era, not suited to modern consciousness etc. But if you're a fly on the wall listening to anthroposophist chatter, clearly there is great nostalgia and palpable longing for said bygone eras. Lip service to "not appropriate today" - but we can sure have a good time talking about those fantastic days of yore when humans perceived spirituality directly, "lived into" the pictures they perceived, watched etheric scrolls uncoiling, wandered in a dreamy spiritual haze, etc.

As I've said elsewhere, I understand this nostalgia. The personal appeal to me is probably half the reason I keep reading this stuff. Once upon a time, events that we can only read about in myths and fairy tales were "living reality." Nowadays, we must struggle with our "modern consciousness" to understand in a new wa . . . bummer!

It also looks to me like this state of consciousness is what Waldorf teachers aim to induce in their students. Part of that "recapitulation of pictorial consciousness" thing? And, if the teacher herself is on a journey of initiation with her students, presumably there is some value, to her as well, in this experiential recapitulation of the pictorial consciousness.

as I have said, outside my field of competence; I'll leave the debate to the experts. The jury may still be out, I don't know.

The Waldorf world has not noticed that the jury is not still out on left handers. Elsewhere in education, it's a closed issue. Left handers are left alone.

So perhaps Waldorf teachers would have liked to toss left-anded children off clifftops when switching them wasn't successful if they'd get away with it?

Oh, I thought you were trying very hard not to tell me what I think? Where did I suggest Waldorf teachers wanted to toss anyone off a cliff? Quote me please?

I hope all right-handed people who shake my hand use their left hands for their handkerchiefs so I won't get all their germs. People should not shake hands with the same hand they sneeze and cough into. Fear of left hands may be linked to fear of germs.

Yes, I came across that theory too. Preparing food and eating with right hand, hygiene with left, thus don't offer me your left hand.

So the spiritual people you describe here are interested in spiritual phenomena that are not hidden, i.e. imperceptible to the five physical senses? Their God or guardian angel or whatever is a being they can see with their eyes and hear with their ears and perhaps record on a video or a tape recorder?

Certain people claim so, certainly. I know, I know, they're not really spiritual, they can't possibly be anthroposophists, etc. . . .

If you recall, to many Christians, the central event occurred when Christ appeared on earth in the flesh, died, and rose in the flesh. Nothing hidden or imperceptible to the five physical senses, no need to perceive realities that other people can't see; had they had video they could've recorded it, yes – or so the story goes.

Secrets and conspiracies are things that interest everybody, not only anthroposophists.

No, that's not so, Tarjei. It's a certain mindset, and it gets very depressing. A great many people have no use at all for such thinking. I admit, I am probably here because I find it fascinating, in a morbid way.

I think occultists would do well to try to move past the obsession with secrets and conspiracies. I think it's a holdover of days of persecution, it's like an inferiority complex or something. You do not have to hide your doctrines anymore - I feel certain Steiner would agree. In the Waldorf world, it was a strategy that perhaps was once necessary, but now is counterproductive. You can get plenty of customers now without having to deal with a lot of angry people complaining that they were duped and deceived. You don't need those people; openly proclaiming the doctrines will draw in many like-minded. Dornach should issue a ruling on this!

I'll post some of the left-handed lore I've found on the web soon, trying to make it presentable without spending hours. I don't vouch for its historical accuracy. It seems a clear picture that negative associations with left-handedness are found throughout the world in myth, lore and superstition. Actually, I'm half-afraid to post it and watch Bradford go on a tear, and actually reinforce rather than help to end justifications for persecution of the left-handed.
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Mon Jan 19, 2004 3:40 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

At 06:03 19.01.2004, Diana wrote:

Tarjei:

Can you cite a few scientific advances that the anhtoposophical movement as a whole, and the Waldorf movement as a whole, has rejected that shouldn't have been rejected and why?

<snip>

Can you quote Steiner where he spoke against 'modern science',

No. I'm not here for a far-ranging discussion on everything wrong (or right) with Waldorf, or to dice up everything Steiner said pro and con on modern science. Such discussions have occurred on the critics list many, many times and can easily be found there.

I know that during the almost eight and a half years of the WC list with doubled-up public archives, allegations of Steiner being opposed to science and rejecting it have been piling up there. I just wrote two posts here packed with Steiner-quotes that testify to the opposite. That's the kind of quotes that you rarely or never see on the WC list, with the exception of those few that can be twisted to suggest something entirely different. Steiner considered anthroposophically oriented spiritual science to be an extension of modern natural science - a discipline that is firmly grounded in modern natural science.

I'm trying to finish this business with you re: left-handers in Waldorf schools.

Go ahead, finish the business. But don't get left- and right-handed occultism mixed up in it.

(I see quotes up ahead. Sorry, I just don't have time for a quote war.)

I guess that's Peter Staudenmaier's department.

I can quickly suggest people check out this recent post on critics:

The latest version of Dan Dugan's Waldorf horror story?

And while you're at it, can you quote me saying that Steiner was never wrong

Nope. That's between you guys.

Between 'us guys'? You're the one who wrote:

"you are recently arguing that Steiner was a saint and couldn't have been wrong or even had human imperfections."

That makes it something between you and me, Diana, especially when I have never argued what you say.

I was just explaining why I may have assumed (perhaps incorrectly, if so I apologize), from your recent postings here, which I have only skimmed and not followed these intricate arguments in-depth, that what Steiner says on science, as on most topics, you are likely in sympathy with.

No need to apologize to me. What you're describing here is however common practice in the morally bankrupt PLANS-WC cult with regard to Steiner and other anthroposophical texts.

(A convoluted sentence, hopefully you get my drift - as another poster here said, I sometimes read Tarjei posts and think ruefully that your English is better than mine.)

That's impossible. I'm Norwegian born and raised and speak English only on rare occasions, and then mostly with people who speak only broken English.

One frequent area of confusion, I think, is that when anthroposophists talk about "anthroposophy," they each have their own interpretation, or often a very personal relationship, to the ideas, to their own understanding of the movement, etc., including fierce disagreements with other anthroposophists. They pick and choose among appealing Steiner quotes - and become very offended when someone points out that other Steiner quotes contradict their personal favorites.

Sound like the PLANS-WC people. They pick and choose among seemingly repugnant or scandalous Steiner quotes and become very offended when someone points out that other Steiner quotes contradict their personal favorites.

When critics speak of "anthroposophy," we take an outsider's perspective, and speak of what we hear, see, and understand we hear anthroposophists saying - in public forums, in faculty meetings at Waldorf schools, etc. This difference leads anthroposophists to often bristle at us and say, "That's not anthroposophy."

It probably isn't anthroposophy. If what has been spoken from some Waldorf pulpit is watered-down anthroposophy, there would be no anthroposophy left at all when the PLANS people have distorted it even further.

Who are we to judge what's anthroposophy, not being anthroposophists?

Good question.

We take a more sociological, descriptive approach: "Anthroposophists often say or do so-and-so," and that, to us, is . . . anthroposophy.

I see.

The movement.

The movement is the entirety of people worldwide taking an active interest in anthroposophy and adopting its Weltanschauung. It includes anthroposophically oriented institutions such as Waldorf schools, but is not limited to it. There are Waldorf critics here in Norway who are writing Waldorf and AS horror stories just like PLANS, but they are constantly talking about Steiner's ideals and intentions and so on, because they are anthroposophists of sorts and therefore part of the Anthroposophical Movement. (These people have been participating on a Scandinavian anthro-list that I may tell you all about in another post. I have recommended the PLANS-WC cult to them, but I don't think they're interested in English language lists.)

The public pronouncements, the observable reality. (Not that we observe it without bias, but that's just the position we are in.) I think most critics would readily admit we can't make sense of your internal squabbles.

That's not surprising. According to the PLANS-WC cult, all anthroposophists are brainwashed, blind followers of a rigid doctrine, incapable of self-dependent critical thinking. How can it be possible for such creatures to squabble about anything?

Anyway - that was a preface to saying, sure, Steiner spoke against atavistic clairvoyance, belonging to a bygone era, not suited to modern consciousness etc. But if you're a fly on the wall listening to anthroposophist chatter, clearly there is great nostalgia and palpable longing for said bygone eras.

The world has become so extremely complicated and challenging and in many respects, unpleasant, with all the woes of the whole world concerning every one of us that longing for bygone eras is only natural. Like the longing for the Old West when men were men and the good guys and the bad guys were easy to distinguish. Anthroposophists are no exception. They are human too.

Lip service to "not appropriate today" - but we can sure have a good time talking about those fantastic days of yore when humans perceived spirituality directly, "lived into" the pictures they perceived, watched etheric scrolls uncoiling, wandered in a dreamy spiritual haze, etc.

And with no self-consciousness, no sense of 'I'. Everyone was part of a group soul, like a pack of wolves. I've heard that some people long to become werewolves too. That's why the movie "Wolf" with Jack Nicholson and Michele Pfeiffer was so popular.

As I've said elsewhere, I understand this nostalgia. The personal appeal to me is probably half the reason I keep reading this stuff. Once upon a time, events that we can only read about in myths and fairy tales were "living reality." Nowadays, we must struggle with our "modern consciousness" to understand in a new way . . . bummer!

Exactly.

It also looks to me like this state of consciousness is what Waldorf teachers aim to induce in their students.

What? Are the Waldorf teachers trying to make students into werewolves?

Part of that "recapitulation of pictorial consciousness" thing?

I don't know what that is, because I'm basically ignorant of Waldorf pedagogy, but it sounds like pre-history to me. Evolution past.

And, if the teacher herself is on a journey of initiation with her students, presumably there is some value, to her as well, in this experiential recapitulation of the pictorial consciousness.

Are there any Waldorf teachers on this list who can enlighten me about this "experiential recapitulation of the pictorial consciousness" in the classroom?

as I have said, outside my field of competence; I'll leave the debate to the experts. The jury may still be out, I don't know.

The Waldorf world has not noticed that the jury is not still out on left handers. Elsewhere in education, it's a closed issue. Left handers are left alone.

Like I said, I wouldn't know. Everything pedagogical has become an enormous political issue here in Norway what the public schools are concerned. The politicians sit debating on the TV for hours and hours how they're going to change everything around. I may be wrong, but I'm left with the impression that nothing is a closed issue in pedagogy/education, and that the jury is still out on just about everything.

So perhaps Waldorf teachers would have liked to toss left-anded children off clifftops when switching them wasn't successful ifthey'd get away with it?

Oh, I thought you were trying very hard not to tell me what I think? Where did I suggest Waldorf teachers wanted to toss anyone off a cliff? Quote me please?

Pardon me, but it looks like you're trying to cheat here, Diana, by using the same words I used when they were justified, where they do not apply. You see, you did indeed tell me what you think when you wrote, "think outside the box, Tarjei". It was a command, grammatically anyway. That's why I could say that you were doing like Joel: telling people what to think. It may have been unfair of me, but it was justified.

Secondly, I did not say that you suggested Waldorf teachers wanted to toss anyone off a cliff, so your call for me quoting you on that is unjustified. I wrote:

"So perhaps Waldorf teachers would have liked to toss left-handed children off clifftops when switching them wasn't successful if they'd get away with it?"

It was a question based upon my logical conclusion of your statement about cruel and superstitious practices of the past, where you lumped the assumed origin of hand-switching, which has been practiced in Waldorf schools, together with tossing babies born with deformities off cliffs. You wrote:

"Left handers are different, because there are far fewer of them, and people always think something is wrong with someone who is different and feel threatened. It's the same reason they tossed babies born with deformities (and sometimes twins) off clifftops."

I believe this quote justifies my conclusion.

Secrets and conspiracies are things that interest everybody, not only anthroposophists.

No, that's not so, Tarjei. It's a certain mindset, and it gets very depressing. A great many people have no use at all for such thinking.

Oliver Stone is not an anthroposophist, but he did make the movie "JFK," didn't he? It's about conspiracy. Watergate was a conspiracy. Make a simple search on this word through any search engine and you'll see how hot it is.

The PLANS-WC cult has its own set of conspiracy theories, and it always involves anthroposophists, with Rudolf Steiner as the sinister Grand Master. There's been all kinds of talk about the "SWA [Steiner-Waldorf-Anthroposophy] mafia". Sharon has been spinning tales, to the best of my recollection, about secret chambers in the Goethanum basement and weird occult Crowley-inspired dark rituals performed by Steiner in subterranean corridors. There's been talk about the goal of Waldorf education being making the students reincarnate as "anthroposophical beings" and Steiner-clones who will become a master race and rule the earth and make life miserable for non-anthroposophists.

I understand that you find it depressing.

I admit, I am probably here because I find it fascinating, in a morbid way.

If I believed PLANS-WC conspiracy theories, it would be morbid to me too. I'm not saying that you believe in those conspiracies, but the PLANS-WC cult does paint a very morbid and sinister and ugly portrait of the Anthroposophical Movement.

I think occultists would do well to try to move past the obsession with secrets and conspiracies.

An occultist is a clairvoyant spiritual researcher. They don't need to spin tales about conspiracies any more than the FBI does. (The FBI does spin tales, but only to fool the public and get a higher budget; not tales they believe in.)

I think it's a holdover of days of persecution, it's like an inferiority complex or something.

That's what I would say about the PLANS-WC cult and how they portray anthroposophists

You do not have to hide your doctrines anymore - I feel certain Steiner would agree.

What have I been hiding from you, Diana? Have I been lying to you or refused to answer any of your questions or something?

In the Waldorf world, it was a strategy that perhaps was once necessary, but now is counterproductive. You can get plenty of customers now without having to deal with a lot of angry people complaining that they were duped and deceived.

I'm working on that right now, Diana. As I mentioned earlier, I sell telephone services for ACN. The giant competitor in Norway, however, Telenor, which holds 85 per cent of the market and owns all the lines (remember AT&T?), keeps doing illegalities and lying to people. It's a big problem. They steal customers from us even without their knowledge!

I know this has nothing to do with Waldorf administration, but neither do I. How many times do I have to say this?

You don't need those people; openly proclaiming the doctrines will draw in many like-minded. Dornach should issue a ruling on this!

I can only guess, but I don't think 'Dornach' rules anything outside the Goetheanum property, except copyright and things like that.

I'll post some of the left-handed lore I've found on the web soon, trying to make it presentable without spending hours. I don't vouch for its historical accuracy. It seems a clear picture that negative associations with left-handedness are found throughout the world in myth, lore and superstition. Actually, I'm half-afraid to post it and watch Bradford go on a tear, and actually reinforce rather than help to end justifications for persecution of the left-handed.

I don't think Bradford is dangerous. Besides, a little tear and flame and fighting can be good for the soul. That's something i learned from the PLANS-WC cult.

Cheers,

Tarjei Straume
http://www.uncletaz.com/anthrocritics.html

"The worst readers are those who proceed like plundering soldiers: they pick up a few things they use, soil and confuse the rest, and blaspheme the whole." - Friedrich Nietzsche, Mixed Opinions and Maxims

...................................................................................................................................

From: winters_diana
Date: Tue Jan 20, 2004 11:59 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Tarjei:
I know that during the almost eight and a half years of the WC list with doubled-up public archives, allegations of Steiner being opposed to science and rejecting it have been piling up there. I just wrote two posts here packed with Steiner-quotes that testify to the opposite.

A quote war isn't useful because there are quotes to "prove" either position. If a person says two contradictory things, one doesn't negate the other, it's the contradiction that would need explanation. And the way I read many of your favorite Steiner-on-science quotes, he is not speaking as a supporter of modern science, but trying to give "spiritual science" legitimacy and respectability. It doesn't matter if someone says they support modern science when they continue proclaiming many things that directly contradict it, espouse a method that is plainly not scientific, or, when asked to show how or where science backs up spiritual claims, suddenly insist the scientific method is all wrong.

The latest version of Dan Dugan's Waldorf horror story?

Thanks for fixing my link. But you have made the usual obstinate mistake: that isn't Dan Dugan's story. Check the name. It's Nicole Foss's story. Did you miss this? Do you think all these people are making these stories up? Or being coached by Dan Dugan behind the scenes?

I'm Norwegian born and raised and speak English only on rare occasions, and then mostly with people who speak only broken English.

Present company included? :)

There are Waldorf critics here in Norway who are writing Waldorf and AS horror stories just like PLANS, but they are constantly talking about Steiner's ideals and intentions and so on, because they are anthroposophists of sorts and therefore part of the Anthroposophical Movement.

Yes, there are even anthroposophists who have noticed that Waldorf is covering up some horror stories. Imagine. <sarcasm> Look at it from the point of view of the rest of us: Waldorf schools are run by anthroposophists. Past that point, you can understand why people who feel they have been burned are impatient with theological subtleties and internal disputes, and not too interested in what is "really" anthroposophy. Honestly! Here you are talking to someone (me) who is actually fairly interested in what is "really" anthroposophy. Your average Waldorf parent is not. Bizarre situation eh?

(These people have been participating on a Scandinavian anthro-list that I may tell you all about in another post. I have recommended the PLANS-WC cult to them, but I don't think they're interested in English language lists.)

Well, I was going to ask you to connect us, but since I started replying to this the other night, I've now read ahead to this story, and perhaps you needn't bother trying to hook us up!! What a riot.

I do hope someone is willing to share the secret of anthroposophical nipples. I'm sure this is the same breast enhancement secret Dottie is guarding so coyly!!!

The world has become so extremely complicated and challenging and in many respects, unpleasant, with all the woes of the whole world concerning every one of us that longing for bygone eras is only natural.

I agree.

And with no self-consciousness, no sense of 'I'. Everyone was part of a group soul, like a pack of wolves. I've heard that some people long to become werewolves too. That's why the movie "Wolf" with Jack Nicholson and Michele Pfeiffer was so popular.

I agree. I mean – not that in the days of hazy clairvoyance, people had no "I" – I really wouldn't know - but I agree that a longing to belong ("group soul" expresses it nicely) is behind this nostalgia. Actually, didn't Steiner say the human head was always trying to turn into a wolf? Anyone got that lecture lying around? J

Part of that "recapitulation of pictorial consciousness" thing?

I don't know what that is, because I'm basically ignorant of Waldorf pedagogy, but it sounds like pre-history to me. Evolution past.

Yes, only they're suppposed to "live into" it, or live through it – or remember living through it, since (reincarnation) all the kids were once there anyway. And, maybe you didn't realize this, but it's not the "prehistory" that is taught in other schools.

Are there any Waldorf teachers on this list who can enlighten me about this "experiential recapitulation of the pictorial consciousness" in the classroom?

Er, read Bradford's posts, Tarjei.

Left hands-
I'm left with the impression that nothing is a closed issue in pedagogy/education, and that the jury is still out on just about everything.

Listen to all these news programs very closely then, and come back and tell us if you ever hear anyone debating switching left handers. I'm glad you admit you are not informed on this topic.

cliff-tossing:

Pardon me, but it looks like you're trying to cheat here, Diana, by sing the same words I used when they were justified, where they do ot apply.

Okay. Sorry.

You see, you did indeed tell me what you think when you wrote, "think outside the box, Tarjei". It was a command, grammatically anyway.

See, this is why I applaud your facility with English syntax etc., Tarjei :) "Think outside the box" could also be a suggestion.

my logical conclusion of your statement about cruel and superstitious practices of the past, where you lumped the assumed origin of hand-switching, which has been practiced in Waldorf schools, together with tossing babies born with deformities off cliffs. You wrote:

"Left handers are different, because there are far fewer of them, and people always think something is wrong with someone who is different and feel threatened. It's the same reason they tossed babies born with deformities (and sometimes twins) off clifftops."

I believe this quote justifies my conclusion.

No, it doesn't. I am speaking about the evolution and persistence of superstitions, sometimes for centuries. In the later periods they rarely take the blatant and drastic forms they originally took – and the people holding onto the superstititons often have no idea of the dark origin of their belief. There is no implication they would do the same thing. The implication is that the practice has a history, and that Waldorf teachers need to learn what it is, in order to better evaluate and place in context advice they still receive about left-handers. Most Waldorf teachers who have looked into the matter, I believe, realize it is misguided and discontinue their "loving" harassment of the left-handed children in their class. Most Waldorf teachers are not sadists. When sadistic elements of childrearing and pedagogy – which persist in Waldorf – are identified, that's usually when society moves on, and finds better, more humane ways to treat children. I'm sure Waldorf could do the same.

Steiner himself, I believe, spoke for progress. Waldorf is shot through with the brutal German/Prussian childrearing culture, the teacher as an authority the child should "reverence," assumptions about the passive nature of the child (despite Bradford's feverish dissertations on the tabula rasa). I think Steiner meant to lighten things up a bit with his talk of love and light.

Steiner said children under age 7 were like "sacks of flour," uncurious, rarely asking questions. He was describing, IMO, children raised to be seen and not heard (perhaps his own upbringing? don't know), and many of his prescriptions are not useful with today's children, who are raised very differently. He spoke, at least on some occasions, in favor of kindness to children. It's just that kindness, in his day, would have have meant something very different than it does today.

Bradford, I think "sacks of flour" is even worse than "blank slate," personally. It meant somewhat the same thing though – the context of Steiner's remark was that you can make any kind of impression you want on a small child, the same way a sack of flour will retain any shape you impress in it, without responding.

I looked for quite some time for an official Steiner pronouncement about corporal punishment, and I finally found it. (If anyone's interested I'll find the quote.) Steiner was opposed to corporal punishment and did tell Waldorf teachers not to do it. Unfortunately, a lot of practices in Waldorf, I believe, though I cannot document it, simply derive from common practices of his day, which were often what we would consider fairly brutal to children. Children were and are subjected to corporal punishment in some Waldorf schools today – 80 years after Steiner told them not to do it. These practices persist because . . . things persist. Unexamined things persist.

There – not eloquently stated (re-write it in the Queen's English if you like, I'm a semi-literate American.)

Perhaps a sensory experience will give everyone a "picture consciousness" of this problem. Try eating your next meal, or the next time you have to write anything long hand, using your non- dominant hand. Come back and tell this list what it felt like. Perhaps it will give you a "picture" of why this is a very unkind thing to do to a child.

The PLANS-WC cult has its own set of conspiracy theories, and it always involves anthroposophists, with Rudolf Steiner as the sinister Grand Master. There's been all kinds of talk about the "SWA [Steiner-Waldorf-Anthroposophy] mafia".

I agree with you to some extent. The term SWA has always made me cringe.

Sharon has been spinning tales, to the best of my recollection, about secret chambers in the Goethanum basement and weird occult Crowley-inspired dark rituals performed by Steiner in subterranean corridors. There's been talk about the goal of Waldorf education being making the students reincarnate as "anthroposophical beings" and Steiner-clones who will become a master race and rule the earth and make life miserable for non-anthroposophists.

Well, I'm not going to get into a quote war on Sharon either! Sharon knows her stuff. Contact her if you want to find her research behind any of her claims, otherwise you are just as guilty of distortion as you accuse us. The last part above refers to a Steiner quote about a future age in which everyone who hasn't seen the light of spiritual science will have to join groups to be told what to "think, feel, will and do." A little chilling if you are not an anthroposophist! Contact her, I bet she has it at her fingertips.

But I do think it has been overquoted. Steiner must have been running a fever, that one is really over the top. But he did say it. His pronouncements about future ages on other planets are highly quotable and, I admit, Waldorf critics are always tempted to take them and run with them, since they do, you must admit, make you all look like a bunch of fruitcakes. In a future age, the physical body will become plant-like, and we will not reproduce sexually, but via the larynx. On Venus, we will live like bees in a colony.

Probably critics should lay off those, probably many Waldorf teachers have never heard of that stuff.

I said:

You do not have to hide your doctrines anymore - I feel certain Steiner would agree.

What have I been hiding from you, Diana? Have I been lying to you or refused to answer any of your questions or something?

I refer to Waldorf PR and recruitment, not to you, Tarjei, I know you aren't involved in Waldorf. This is a public list and I spoke in an aside to Waldorfers who might be listening, as some certainly are.
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Tue Jan 20, 2004 1:23 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

At 20:59 20.01.2004, Diana wrote:

Tarjei:

I know that during the almost eight and a half years of the WC list with doubled-up public archives, allegations of Steiner being opposed to science and rejecting it have been piling up there. I just wrote two posts here packed with Steiner-quotes that testify to the opposite.

A quote war isn't useful because there are quotes to "prove" either position. If a person says two contradictory things, one doesn't negate the other, it's the contradiction that would need explanation. And the way I read many of your favorite Steiner-on-science quotes, he is not speaking as a supporter of modern science, but trying to give "spiritual science" legitimacy and respectability.

He is "trying to"? Frankly, I don't think "critics" have any understanding whatsoever of what Steiner was trying to say.

It doesn't matter if someone says they support modern science when they continue proclaiming many things that directly contradict it, espouse a method that is plainly not scientific, or, when asked to show how or where science backs up spiritual claims, suddenly insist the scientific method is all wrong.

Steiner did no such thing, but was faithful to the scientific discoveries, achievements and method of his own day. What you're describing is distortions.

The latest version of Dan Dugan's Waldorf horror story?

Thanks for fixing my link. But you have made the usual obstinate mistake: that isn't Dan Dugan's story. Check the name. It's Nicole Foss's story. Did you miss this? Do you think all these people are making these stories up? Or being coached by Dan Dugan behind the scenes?

I've never had a problem with Waldorf horror stories per se. The problem I have is the stubborn and agressive unwillingness to accept that there are many Waldorf schools in the world where horror stories do not occur., and if a Waldorf school is without horror stories, they're supposedly hiding a bunch of them in the basement or something.

I'm Norwegian born and raised and speak English only on rare occasions, and then mostly with people who speak only broken English.

Present company included? :)

Curiously, I still get mistaken for an American even by Americans when I speak English, but it may have something to do with my theatrical background. Or all them Humphrey Bogart movies like Scarface used to say.

Yes, there are even anthroposophists who have noticed that Waldorf is covering up some horror stories. Imagine. <sarcasm>

Like I said, I've never had a problem with Waldorf horror stories per se. That's not what baited me to the WC list when I was dumb enough to subscribe there. I joined that list because of charges against Anthroposophy and Rudolf Steiner and the utter persverion and blasphemy that spiritual science was subjected to in the hands of those thugs.

Look at it from the point of view of the rest of us: Waldorf schools are run by anthroposophists. Past that point, you can understand why people who feel they have been burned are impatient with theological subtleties and internal disputes, and not too interested in what is "really" anthroposophy. Honestly! Here you are talking to someone (me) who is actually fairly interested in what is "really" anthroposophy. Your average Waldorf parent is not. Bizarre situation eh?

To be honest, Diana, I find it very difficult to take your word for it when you say that you are "actually truly interested in what is really anthroposophy." I don't think you are a dishonest person at all, but on this particular claim, I don't believe you.

Perhaps a sensory experience will give everyone a "picture consciousness" of this problem. Try eating your next meal, or the next time you have to write anything long hand, using your non- dominant hand. Come back and tell this list what it felt like. Perhaps it will give you a "picture" of why this is a very unkind thing to do to a child.

For the record: I once broke my right hand thumb in high school and wrote with my left hand until it healed, even at an exam. A little awkward, but my teachers were positively pleased and I suffered no harm, and I could easily have continued with the adjustment if necessary. I was 17, and I understand switching has been done at a much younger age. My mother's aunt actually lost her entire right arm in her youth and had to adjust.

I read a mail from a man who had been swtitched as a child and claimed no discomfort and no suffering because of it.

So I still have no personal position on this issue.

Well, I'm not going to get into a quote war on Sharon either! Sharon knows her stuff.

Sharon has not understood a single sentence of what she has read by Rudolf Steiner or about anthroposophy, Diana. Not one word. She writes a lot of crap. And the more she reads about anthroposophy, the more crap she writes about it. Perhaps I shouldn't be, but I'm amazed that you fall for Sharon's garbage and swallow it whole.

Contact her if you want to find her research behind any of her claims, otherwise you are just as guilty of distortion as you accuse us. The last part above refers to a Steiner quote about a future age in which everyone who hasn't seen the light of spiritual science will have to join groups to be told what to "think, feel, will and do." A little chilling if you are not an anthroposophist!

Nonsense. Steiner described future spiritual evolution, corresponding to the Apocalypse of St. John, when humanity will be divided in two groups: Those who accept the Christ Impulse and those who reject it. Those who reject the Christ will not be able to achieve selflessness and will therefore be dragged down by their own selfish desires. Spiritual science, or anthroposophy, can help people to find the Christ. What Sharon is describing is a gross perversion and distortion of this. "Chilling if you are not an anthroposophist"? That's stupid!

Contact her, I bet she has it at her fingertips.

If you think Sharon has something to contribute to the understanding of Steiner's works, invite her to Anthroposophy Tomorrow.

But I do think it has been overquoted. Steiner must have been running a fever, that one is really over the top.

And Paul must have been very ill on his way to Damascus. Joan of Arc was insane, but she didn't get her medication, poor girl. Francis from Assissi probably had a brain tumor or something.

But he did say it. His pronouncements about future ages on other planets are highly quotable and, I admit, Waldorf critics are always tempted to take them and run with them, since they do, you must admit, make you all look like a bunch of fruitcakes. In a future age, the physical body will become plant-like, and we will not reproduce sexually, but via the larynx. On Venus, we will live like bees in a colony.

Of course that doesn't make sense to people who have not made the necessary effort to understand these things, and if the desire to ridicule is fuelled by hostility and aversion, the distortions are increased in matching proportions.

"For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?" - 1 Corinthians 1:18-20

I refer to Waldorf PR and recruitment, not to you, Tarjei, I know you aren't involved in Waldorf. This is a public list and I spoke in an aside to Waldorfers who might be listening, as some certainly are.

How would I know if anything in your posts is addressed to me if so much of it is to Bradford or invisible Waldorfers?

Tarjei
http://uncletaz.com/

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From: dottie zold
Date: Wed Jan 21, 2004 10:24 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

Diana

Well, I'm not going to get into a quote war on Sharon either! Sharon knows her stuff.

Tarjei
Sharon has not understood a single sentence of what she has read by Rudolf Steiner or about anthroposophy, Diana. Not one word.

Dear Tarjei and Diana,

I have found Sharon to be amazing! AND she does not get the 'spirit' of what Steiner was saying. She has so much outer knowledge, and is able to connect the dots in a way that I find absolutely astounding, and unfortunately she misses the boat because she is unwilling to consider the spiritual worlds as a reality. She gathers her information and it stays just that information; good information and sometimes great information but that is all it rises to. She actually is on parr with Barbara G. Walker in my mind. And I am not real sure from the books I have read whether or not she is a spirit believer or an aetheist. But it doesn't matter because she has all the FACTS right and I can use them.

It seems to me, Diana, you contemplate it or at least are willing to think on it. I do not know if you always have or its just been over a period of time that you have been interacting with the Steiner students. Just as you have been an impact on the Steiner students with your accounts of ugly Waldorf experiences.

And I have found Sharon to find only that which she is looking for, which really does not serve the truth if that is indeed what she is looking to get. But she sure is filling herself with Steiners work even if she doesn't truly inwardly get it in her outer mind. Who knows truly unto what end this will lead her in the future or if it will connect at some point within. It'd be a shame to study just to prove something wrong yet sometimes what we think we are doing is having a completely different affect on our spirit. Even if you do not believe in one:)

Love,
Dottie

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From: winters_diana
Date: Wed Jan 21, 2004 11:35 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Hi Dottie!

I think people have all kinds of different ways of understanding the world and finding their place in it and finding meaning. When anthroposophists bemoan the fact that some people are "unwilling to consider the spiritual worlds as a reality," they are implying that what they have experienced and understood as "reality" is everybody's reality. I feel that it is really not necessary to go around slotting this person or that person as "spiritual" or not depending on whether they subscribe to your belief system. There happen to be a lot of belief systems out there. How people arrive at certain ones, and why other people reject them, or want to argue about them :) is fascinating, and my suspicion is that it has little to do with how inherently "spiritual" they are.

I don't mean this to sound terribly testy toward you, Dottie, I really admire your recent explorations and would like to sincerely urge you on!

I have found Sharon to be amazing! AND she does not get the 'spirit' of what Steiner was saying. She has so much outer knowledge, and is able to connect the dots in a way that I find absolutely astounding, and unfortunately she misses the boat because she is unwilling to consider the spiritual worlds as a reality.

It seems to me, Diana, you contemplate it or at least are willing to think on it.

Of course I do. Doesn't everybody? Why do anthroposophists think they are the only people in town who wonder and work on these questions? I don't try to "know higher worlds" a la Steiner's plan these days, no - I find it a tad narrowly defined. :)

I do not know if you always have or its just been over a period of time that you have been interacting with the Steiner students.

I'm not sure what you mean - I'm writing another post to Tarjei detailing some of this in response to his statement that I must not be honest when I say I am genuinely interested in anthroposophy. I was raised very religiously so of course I had thought about spiritual matters long before I ever heard of Rudolf Steiner or Waldorf. I don't interact with Steiner students these days, unless you mean former ones, such as some of my son's friends (or on-line with adults who are former Steiner students).

And I have found Sharon to find only that which she is looking for,

I don't want to speak for Sharon, but I think it is true that Sharon set out to find something - something that nobody had bothered to even mention the existence of to her before she uprooted her life to join a Steiner community, not even knowing it was a religious movement. After it had all gone wrong, you too might set out to find the reasons. You catch people in a different frame of mind if you explain to them what you are offering before they buy houses, write tuition checks, etc. You can get lots more spiritual receptivity that way. Honesty is a very good spiritual value IMO.

It'd be a shame to study just to prove something wrong yet sometimes what we think we are doing is having a completely different affect on our spirit. Even if you do not believe in one:)

I agree with you if you are saying that none of us know where our researches or searches will lead us, into or away from particular belief systems (or sympathies and antipathies, to borrow some of Joel's favorite phrases). Especially if many lifetimes are factored in. I really could see where, if multiple lifetimes were part of the picture, critics and anthroposophists might alternate incarnations. :)
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: Daniel Hindes
Date: Wed Jan 21, 2004 5:35 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

Diana wrote:
A quote war isn't useful because there are quotes to "prove" either position. If a person says two contradictory things, one doesn't negate the other, it's the contradiction that would need explanation. And the way I read many of your favorite Steiner-on-science quotes, he is not speaking as a supporter of modern science, but trying to give "spiritual science" legitimacy and respectability. It doesn't matter if someone says they support modern science when they continue proclaiming many things that directly contradict it, espouse a method that is plainly not scientific, or, when asked to show how or where science backs up spiritual claims, suddenly insist the scientific method is all wrong.

A quote ware might not be useful, but I would like to see the quotes that show Steiner to be against science. I quite simply doubt they exist, and you certainly haven't shown us any. And I mean quotes with sources that I can check to verify context and accuracy. If you are going to publicly claim that Steiner was against science, you have the responsibiliy to back that claim up if someone calls you on this. Otherwise you are just blowing hot air. Now if your friends Dugan and Staudenmaier have already done so much work establishing the fact, it should be fairly simple to cut and paste the quotes that they have used to establish this and present them here. Now I am aware that, for example, Staudenmaier has stated in a few places that Steiner was against science, but I have not found any quotes to support his assertion. His examples to establish this all seem to involve wacko anthroposophists doing strange things (and without any cited sources for those claims either).

This isn't the WC list. If you are going to make claims, you will be asked to back them up. And sidestepping the questions of "proof" shows more a biased opinion than any actual knowledge on the matter.

Daniel

...................................................................................................................................

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Wed Jan 21, 2004 4:31 pm
Subject: Inquire Within

At 20:59 20.01.2004, Diana wrote:

Sharon knows her stuff. Contact her if you want to find her research behind any of her claims, otherwise you are just as guilty of distortion as you accuse us.

At 19:24 21.01.2004, Dottie wrote:

I have found Sharon to be amazing! AND she does not get the 'spirit' of what Steiner was saying. She has so much outer knowledge, and is able to connect the dots in a way that I find absolutely astounding, and unfortunately she misses the boat because she is unwilling to consider the spiritual worlds as a reality. She gathers her information and it stays just that information; good information and sometimes great information but that is all it rises to. She actually is on parr with Barbara G. Walker in my mind. And I am not real sure from the books I have read whether or not she is a spirit believer or an aetheist. But it doesn't matter because she has all the FACTS right and I can use them.

To Sharon's credit, perhaps, she reminds me of Christina Stoddard who wrote a couple of books in the 1930's under the pseudonym "Inquire Within."

What you should keep in mind here is the paradox that today, Rudolf Steiner is portrayed as a right-wing, pan-Germanist, fascist anti-Semite, but in the 1920's, he was portrayed as a Zionist Jew and a secret political agent for Moscow. This portrayal continued throughout the 1930's when fascism and anti-Semitism flourished not only in Germany, but also in France and Britain and in the rest of Europe.

For this reason, you must not be misled by my comarison of these two Steiner-critics (Christina Stoddard and Sharon) to the point of thinking that Sharon's arguments would support a national socialist agenda. Sharon is serving the PLANS-WC cult and the left-wing agenda of Peter Staudenmaier in the same manner that Christina Stoddard was serving the cause of fascism in the 1930's. But the arguments related to Steiner's occultism have some striking similarities, and they are eaually off base and severly distorted and twisted.

Christina Stoddard wrote two books in the 1930's under the strange pseudonym "Inquire Within": "Light-Bearers of Darkness" (1932) and "The Trail of the Serpent" (1936). I do have the latter on my shelf, and I have previously quoted from one of its chapters in my very first response to the PLANS-WC argumentation, when I had barely heard of that organization (or cult):

http://www.uncletaz.com/allegations.html

In this article, which is based upon a dialogue between myself and Tom Mellett at the Steiner98 list, I quote the beginning of 'Chapter IX, Rudolf Steiner and Anthroposophy,' from "Trail of the Serpent," where "Inquire Within" quotes an article from the British fascist newspaper "Patriot." (Scroll down to "The Anti-Semitic, Fascist-Communist Zionist ".)

I think this entire chapter is worth quoting under the circumstances, so you can all see the striking parallell between Sharon and Christina Stoddard, or "Inquire Within." With this in mind, I can understand very well that you find Sharon amazing, because "Inquire Within" had also done her thorough homework on Freemasonry, Cabalism, Gnosticism, Syrian cects, Rosicrucians, Weishoupt's Illuminati, Carbonari, Karl Marx,, Anthroposophy and Theosophy, Alesiter Crowley and the Golden Dawn, Yoga, and secret societies in Tibet, America, and China.

The parrallel between Sharon and "Inquire Within" certainly has its limits, because the latter appears to have written the two books in question under the auspices of certain sections of Freemasonry who may have represented Rudolf Steiner's most powerful enemies.

Before I venture to quote the ninth chapter in "Trail of the Serpent" in a later post, I'd like to share with you some results I have found through a quick search on the internet:

http://mirrorh.com/timelinead19.html

1932 - Council of Nine - "We were amazed to discover that links between the modern phenomenon of the Council of Nine and various occult organizations and esotericists such as Synarchy, Aleister Crowley and Alice Bailey had already been brought together with a 'Council of Nine' as far back as the 1930s. Under the bizarre pseudonym of 'inquire within'', research by Christina Stoddard, former head of a schismatic Golden Dawn order called the Stella Matutina, appeared in two books, Light-Bearers of Darkness (1935) and The Trail of the Serpent (1936). They sounded a warning about the creation of new religious belief systems by apparently independent - but in fact connected - groups. Stoddard herself, like Schwaller de Lubicz and Alice bailey, held extreme right-wing views, but even she was disturbed by what she saw as the increasing iron grip of Synarchy on the esoteric world.

"Stoddard discussed Saint-Yves's Synarchist objectives, specifically the control of the three pillars of society, political, religious and economic institutions. She pointed out that this seemed to be happening in the religious sphere. Unlike the days when Christianity was the only sanctioned religion in the West, there were many different belief systems, making this area harder to control. To reverse this trend, the religions must first be unified, not by trying to supplant them, but by absorbing their main elements and effectively creating a new global religion. The best way of achieving this goal would be for some authoratative and charismatic leader to take control by explaining that God or the gods have, over the course of history, revealed certain truths to different people, which manifested as apparently disparate religions. But they all emanated from the same God. All that was needed was an understanding of the fundamental principles and the higher levels of spirituality to which mankind may now aspire. Tellingly, Stoddard gave as the prime example of this Synarchist synthesis the doctrines of Alice A. Bailey.

"The Trail of the Serpent describes a secret rivalry between Reuben Swinburne Clymer and H. Spencer Lewis, who both claimed to be the legitimate head of American Rosicrucianism. Clymer (a 32nd degree mason), claimed that he had been given his authority by no less a person than the social reformer Paschal Beverly Randolph (1825-75) - a friend of Abraham Lincoln - whom the European Rosicrucians had authorised to take the Order to America in 1852, many years before H. Spencer Lewis founded AMORC. The resulting dispute led to Clymer taking the matter to court, which found in his favor and accepted his registration of the title 'Rosicrucian' in 1935.

"Clymer claimed that the doctrines of his society, the Fraternitas Rosae Crucis, were endorsed by a secret order that directed it from France - called the Council of Nine. He published a letter from them in 1932, which proclaimed:

This is the new Dispensation, and the work of the Spiritual and Mystical Fraternities must be re-established throughout the world, so that all peoples may be taught the Law and thereby enabled to apply it towards universal improvement as the only means of saving mankind... We, the Council of Nine, have selected your organization, as one of the oldest in America, to help do this work.

[The Stargate Conspiracy, Lynn Picknett & Clive Prince, pp. 287-288]"

http://theocrasy.topcities.com/33westcott.htm

Miss Stoddard was one of the "Ruling Chiefs" of the Mother Temple of the Stella Matutina and R.R et A.C.14 Stoddard informs us that the Stella Matutina was a by-product of the research initiated by the Quatuor Coronati Lodge. As the "Members of Forty" in the Mother Research Lodge received enough occult information to organize debased sub-Masonic lodges, they assisted Masons of degenerate character who would carry out the work. Stella Matutina was founded by two Englishmen near the beginning of the 20th century, each respectively members of the formerly opposed lodges, the Grand Orient and English Grand Lodge. The Grand Orient Mason was Aleister Crowley (1875-1947), who had been initiated into the 33rd degree in Mexico. (A photocopy of Crowley's Grand Orient credentials is in Appendix 2, Fig. 28.) The other co-founder was 33rd degree English Grand Lodge Mason, Dr. William Wynn Westcott (1848-1925), a London coroner.(15) These sub-lodges became known as co-Masonry, since women were permitted to join. Soon, via the sub-lodges, witchcraft and drug abuse spread everywhere, even into the highest circles of society. Satanic jewelry became commonplace. Rituals incorporating mind-altering drugs, orgies and blood sacrifice were discreetly carried out in the heart of the London slums and on remote ancestral estates.

http://www.hermeticgoldendawn.org/Documents/Bios/GDhistory.htm

In addition to the Paris temple, the supporters of MacGregor Mathers established family temples in London (1900, 1913, 1919), and Edinburgh (1912). There was also a hybrid group known as the Cromlech Temple (1913) which was a joint effort created by the Edinburgh A.O. temple and some Anglican clergymen. Some individuals who were initiated into the A.O. would later establish new magical groups. Dion Fortune, a student of psychology, left the Order in 1922 to form the "Fraternity of the Inner Light." Paul Foster Case would later go on to create his own organization, the "Builders of the Adytum. Meanwhile, Dr. Felkin established the Smaragdum Thalasses Temple of the Stella Matutina in New Zealand in 1912. The New Zealand Order became known by the Maori name of Whare Ra or “the House of the Sun.” Back in England, Felkin established three more temples of the S.M. in 1916. These included the Hermes Lodge in Bristol, the Merlin Lodge, and the Secret College in London. The primary focus of Felkin’s group was on astral traveling. Felkin’s abilities as the leader of a magical Order were somewhat lacking compared to Mathers. He went searching all over Europe for the Secret Chiefs of the Order in physical form. The teachings of the Order suffered as a result from public exposure by Miss Stoddart.

http://freemasonry.bcy.ca/anti-masonry/miller_e/miller_e.html

Occult Theocrasy relies heavily on the published works of self-described 33° freemason, Domenico Margiotta; the hoaxers Dr. Karl Hacks and Leo Taxil and their creations, Diana Vaughan and Dr. Bataille;3. the imaginary Miss. Vaughan's promoter, Adriano Lemmi; anti-mason, Samuel Paul Rosen (1840-1907), theosophist, Alice Bailey (1880-1949); Taxil's supporter, Clarin de la Rive; antisemite, Nesta H. Webster and the still anonymous "Inquire Within".

"Inquire Within" and her authorship is also of great interest to neo-Nazis:

http://www.stormfront.org/rpo/CHURCH.htm

http://www.stormfront.org/rpo/POLITIC1.htm

Sweet dreams,

Tarjei
http://uncletaz.com/

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From: winters_diana
Date: Thu Jan 22, 2004 5:06 am
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Tarjei, I gotta drop the arguments about science, just lack of time.

To be honest, Diana, I find it very difficult to take your word for it when you say that you are "actually truly interested in what is really anthroposophy." I don't think you are a dishonest person at all, but on this particular claim, I don't believe you.

No doubt we mean different things when we say we are "really interested in anthroposophy," but I am honest in my claim and not trying to say anything cynical or coded by that. I assure you my interest in anthroposophy is genuine. I had never heard of anthroposophy before the local anthroposophists opened a Waldorf school three blocks from my house. We literally wandered in off the street with our 3-year-old one rainy weekend afternoon, seeing the "Open House" sign on the street. (It was something to do to keep an active preschooler entertained, and it seemed fortuitous because we were starting to look for a preschool.) We were entranced by the atmosphere, the wholesome activities, I believe I already referenced the tissue paper butterflies!! the soft lights and pastel colors, the felted gnomes and knit bunnies, the teacher in her apron reciting a fairy tale, and we were warmly encouraged to come back. They did not serve the kids oreos and purple koolaid, they spoke against TV, which we rarely allowed our son to watch, and they did not show videos. We said, "Where do we sign?" When they asked me to help in the classroom, I thought it would be wonderful. (And in fact it often was.) (So you see, they practically hired me off the street, what a mistake that was.) J

Within a few weeks, I fully understood that the place was run on, by, and for anthroposophy. I also realized that other parents, who did not spend hours a day at the school as I did, did not understand this. I was not deterred or alarmed by this – I thought anthroposophy sounded fascinating. I was thrilled in fact, I was very interested in anything alternative (and was not nearly as cynical about anything New Age as I am now). I had joined a new movement and there was much to learn and much work to be done. I was not opposed to anything New Age, I can read Tarot cards and I had gone to Goddess worshipping circles and similar stuff (didn't everybody?), I had been reading about homeopathy, and I would have told you of course I wanted "holistic" education for my son. Most Waldorf parents are seeking something nontraditional in education – something gentler, less rigid. (Ha!!!) I joined the anthro study groups and went to faculty meetings (which also include much Steiner study). Before that year was out, I had decided to become a Waldorf teacher. Of course, there was the problem of . . . Steiner. I worked really hard, I studied and asked questions, I tried really hard to believe. I did exercises and meditations. I read all this stuff, Tarjei, many volumes of Steiner (much of it on my own), over the course of the 3 years we were involved with the school. I planned to become a Waldorf teacher, I went to conferences and worked with 3 different teachers. For a long period, I thought surely these people must be misinterpreting Steiner, and when I had my own class, I would do things right. Even well past the point we were disillusioned with the school and knew we couldn't keep our child in there, I was still a sincere student of anthroposophy. It was only these people who were screwing up what should be a beautiful thing, I told myself. (In other words, maybe they weren't "really" anthroposophists?)

It took MONTHS – no – YEARS for me to begin to accept that the beautiful dream was just that, and that the problems really were systematic and could not be understood without reference to the underlying belief system, and the culture that comes out of it. The stories from too many schools were too similar.

So, of course when I read it now I have a quite different perspective than when I started, but I truly cannot be accused of not having studied anthroposophy seriously and sympathetically, and attempted to "do the work" (as critics are always told we cannot possibly have done; we supposedly only repeat what we hear from Dan Dugan). I read anthroposophy and participated in study groups (3 of them) for about 4 years before I ever heard of Dan Dugan. (I wanted to be a Waldorf teacher and I was told explicitly that would require an in-depth and very difficult study of Rudolf Steiner, because everything in the classroom is based on Steiner's indications.) I am usually trying not to laugh on the critics list, when anthroposophists condescend to me that I obviously know very little about anthroposophy or Waldorf schools. I am wrong, they say, to imagine that anthroposophy explains what happens in Waldorf classrooms. Tell that to the teachers I worked with.

Obviously, my motivations for continuing to study it have changed a lot now, but they are entirely sincere. I do not aim to trash a movement, hurt individuals, destroy other people's spirituality (which I doubt is that fragile anyway). I am not an "Opposing Power" (referring to this list's charter) nor working for dark gods – I am a very ordinary mother (with an interest in education; I've tutored reading for a long time). I do want to understand – what happened to me, my son, many of my son's friends, the other children I saw trying to make sense of their experience, many other people with whom I have since discussed Waldorf in different parts of the world.

Yes, my interpretations changed fairly drastically over time, as I became clearer on the source of the problems (and, after our son transferred, we saw the way schools work that are not run by adherents to an unusual and totalizing belief system). My fascination with anthroposophy has not changed at all. Perhaps it is sick, obsessive (friends think so; they would be much more comfortable if I joined another cult rather than continuing to fret about this one; everybody's into something like this, Feng Shui, Buddhism, you name it). C'est la vie in this the New Age. I think because I was raised very religiously I will always be drawn to similar systems and communities and interested in religious belief systems. In my observation the many "New Age" religions are not much of an improvement over the hellfire and brimstone I was raised with.

For the record: I once broke my right hand thumb in high school and wrote with my left hand until it healed, even at an exam. A little awkward, but my teachers were positively pleased and I suffered no harm, and I could easily have continued with the adjustment if necessary. I was 17, and I understand switching has been done at a much younger age. My mother's aunt actually lost her entire right arm in her youth and had to adjust.

I read a mail from a man who had been swtitched as a child and claimed no discomfort and no suffering because of it.

It varies by individuals, obviously. A small percentage of people are completely ambidextrous, fully comfortable with either hand, and others have varying amounts of difficulty using the non-dominant hand. Some people can easily write with one hand and do everything else with the other. For others, it is more difficult, for some it is virtually impossible and very painful. I fall in that category and so do many people. It really is genetic, though I realize the mere thought of genes determining anything gives people here the shivers; sorry, some things are genetic. So some people can be "switched" without trauma, probably, but many cannot. It is unnecessary and unnatural anyway. I don't know if it's easier when you're older or younger – perhaps that varies among individuals as well.

It is also quite different to do it temporarily for an obvious reason like breaking your thumb – rather than, as a small child, to have this painful and confusing thing forced on you for no apparent reason.

Steiner described future spiritual evolution, corresponding to the Apocalypse of St. John, when humanity will be divided in two groups: Those who accept the Christ Impulse and those who reject it.

Ayyyyiiiiiiiiiieeeee. Once again, that's how you get me to run for the hills, Tarjei, dividing humanity into those who accept Christ and those who don't, no thank you, been there and done that. What a stupid threat it is, why do religious people think it is progress to divide humanity into camps this way, it is very primitive thinking if you ask me. Hey, ask me again next lifetime.

Of course that doesn't make sense to people who have not made the necessary effort to understand these things,

I repeat that I have made strenuous efforts to understand many of these things. I admit I find it hard to maintain open-mindedness toward Steiner's more ludicrous predictions.

and if the desire to ridicule is fuelled by hostility and aversion, the distortions are increased in matching proportions.

Sometimes, I agree, the desire to ridicule is fueled by hostility and aversion. Sometimes a desire to ridicule is a natural response to something . . . ridiculous.

"For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

Yes so I've heard – thanks anyway.

How would I know if anything in your posts is addressed to me if so much of it is to Bradford or invisible Waldorfers?

Tarjei, just ignore it if it isn't relevant to you. There is no way these discussions could proceed at all without moving on and ignoring many interesting points – unless you have 14 hours a day for this as Bradford seems to.
Diana

[Continues in another thread]

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From: winters_diana
Date: Thu Jan 22, 2004 1:25 pm
Subject: Re: Steiner on left handedness

Daniel wrote:

A quote ware might not be useful, but I would like to see the quotes that show Steiner to be against science. I quite simply doubt they exist, and you certainly haven't shown us any. And I mean quotes with sources that I can check to verify context and accuracy. If you are going to publicly claim that Steiner was against science, you have the responsibiliy to back that claim up if someone calls you on this. Otherwise you are just blowing hot air. Now if your friends Dugan and Staudenmaier have already done so much work establishing the fact, it should be fairly simple to cut and paste the quotes that they have used to establish this and present them here. Now I am aware that, for example, Staudenmaier has stated in a few places that Steiner was against science, but I have not found any quotes to support his assertion. His examples to establish this all seem to involve wacko anthroposophists doing strange things (and without any cited sources for those claims either)

Daniel, I merely redirect you to my previous statement:

(I wrote) "It doesn't matter if someone says they support modern science when they continue proclaiming many things that directly contradict it," and perhaps that will get you started.

Do you think the methods in "How to Know Higher Worlds" are "science"? Are the descriptions of ancient "Atlantis" science? Are the predictions of future "incarnations" of our planet as "Venus" and "Saturn" science? Are karma and reincarnation science? Do you really need me to find these quotes for you?

Get real. Dugan and Staudenmaier did not have to do "so much work" to establish the incompatibility of "spiritual science" with what the rest of us consider science. All they had to do was crack open a random volume of Steiner off the shelf.

I originally stated that the movement as a whole is skeptical of or insulated from scientific advances, thus being slow to catch on that switching left handed children isn't done anymore elsewhere. If you'd like the original Steiner quote on left-handedness, I can find that for you – or you can easily find it yourself at the bobandnancy site, where this idiocy is still being promoted. Yes Daniel, I "claim publicly" that saying that left-handedness is due to karmic weakness is not science.

Tarjei then tried to start a discussion of whether Steiner was "against science," and I said I didn't have time. I don't have an obligation to have this discussion just because your feathers are ruffled by obvious statements about Rudolf Steiner's relationship to modern science.

Diana

[Continued in another thread]

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From: Daniel Hindes
Date: Thu Jan 22, 2004 5:18 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

Diana wrote:
(I wrote) "It doesn't matter if someone says they support modern science when they continue proclaiming many things that directly contradict it," and perhaps that will get you started.

Do you think the methods in "How to Know Higher Worlds" are "science"? Are the descriptions of ancient "Atlantis" science? Are the predictions of future "incarnations" of our planet as "Venus" and "Saturn" science? Are karma and reincarnation science? Do you really need me to find these quotes for you?

Daniel replies:
If this is what you believe, then the correct statement is, "much of what Steiner wrote appears to me to go against modern science." Steiner repeatedly said that he felt his work was in accodance with the methods of science. It is, of course, entirely acceptable to doubt this and claim it untrue. If that is your position, then I would encourage you to state it as such. Simply stating that "Steiner was against science" is a misrepresentation of Steiner's own position. Say instead, "Although Steiner repeatedly reiterated his support for modern science, I feel that the bulk of his work is incompatible with such a stance." While it may take more words, it accurately represents your views. Stating "Steiner was against science" does not accurately represent Steiner's views. This may appear a minor point, but I feel that honesty is important.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Diana wrote:
Get real. Dugan and Staudenmaier did not have to do "so much work" to establish the incompatibility of "spiritual science" with what the rest of us consider science. All they had to do was crack open a random volume of Steiner off the shelf.
---------------------------------------------------
Daniel replies:
Very well. I am inclined to agree that Dugan and Staudenmaier have not done much work in their attempts to misrepresent Anthroposophy. The quotes they have they mostly got from other longtime opponents of Anthroposophy in Europe. I find it somewhat dishonest for them to pretend that they found them entirely on their own. Staudenmeier's first article had a bare minimum of Steiner quotes, all taken from secondary sources. His subsequent work benefitted from the work of Peter Zegers in Holland, where I am guessing he got his sudden familiarity with the arcana of Steiners 300-odd volumes of work, a familiarity that would ordinarily take years of research. However, he merely has a list of useful quotes, he does not actually know the contents of the books they are taken from, and has never, to my knowledge, addressed the question of whether they accurately represent the central themes and general thesis of the works they are taken from. He pretends to great knowledge, and appears quite erudite. But has he really read 50 odd Steiner books cover to cover in an attempt to understand their contents?

Diana wrote:
I originally stated that the movement as a whole is skeptical of or insulated from scientific advances, thus being slow to catch on that switching left handed children isn't done anymore elsewhere. If you'd like the original Steiner quote on left-handedness, I can find that for you – or you can easily find it yourself at the bobandnancy site, where this idiocy is still being promoted. Yes Daniel, I "claim publicly" that saying that left-handedness is due to karmic weakness is not science.

Daniel replies:
And you might have noticed that I did not challenge you in this observation. It is not my intention to simply be contentious for the sake of being contentions. I only brought up issues where I believe there are misstatements. Now to your example, you imply that because Steiner appears to be against science in one recommendation, we can infer that Steiner was against science. While this makes for good rhetoric, I do not believe that it makes for good logic. Generalizing from one example is not scientific. Even several dozen examples would not suffice. It would be necessary to examine the work of Steiner as a whole. Nor is it logical to judge Steiner by the behaviour of his followers (though I should note that you have not done this here). If you want to judge Karl Marx's thinking, you do not look at Central American leftists or even Russian communists. You examine the work of Karl Marx.

Diana wrote:
Tarjei then tried to start a discussion of whether Steiner was "against science," and I said I didn't have time. I don't have an obligation to have this discussion just because your feathers are ruffled by obvious statements about Rudolf Steiner's relationship to modern science.

Daniel replies:
Were it that simple. You made a blanket statement, as a statement of fact, and I objected. It does not matter what caused you to make this statement. And I would suggest that a casual disregard for truth and a lack of responsibility for your own statements is not a sign of knowledge or an open mind. Implying that it is my problem becacause my feathers were ruffled is, again, a cheap way out. This isn't the WC list. If you make claims that I feel are incorrect, I will ask you to substantiate them. Here you cannot rely on a gallery chanting "but we all know it is so". I am asking you here to prove it, or back down from your statement.

Daniel Hindes

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From: dottie zold
Date: Fri Jan 23, 2004 7:16 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: Steiner on left handedness

Diana wrote:
I think people have all kinds of different ways of understanding the world and finding their place in it and finding meaning. When anthroposophists bemoan the fact that some people are "unwilling to consider the spiritual worlds as a reality," they are implying that what they have experienced and understood as "reality" is everybody's reality.

Hey Diana,

Glad you are sticking around:)

Just for clarity I am a christian and can't speak for anthroposophist and how they feel. All most all of the people I am in contact with, Buddhists, Islamist, Hinduist, Christians, Anthroposophist, Zenists:) tend to hold a very similar spiritual reality. And in this spiritual reality they have come to know a basic: we are more than the body and live on after death. And they have also come to know, even those on a beginning journey, there are ways to 'know' this reality.

Now Anthroposphists may have a particular view of how this spiritual world plays out because it feels self evident to them along with their particular studies, which include all the great religions of the world for the most part.

When I speak of Sharon not considering a spiritual reality it is not as a judgement rather as a statement of my experience of her. She is really great at getting all the facts and does indeed miss the meat of what she is gathering. And, so what? Where a problem comes in, is when her 'facts' get twisted in her interpretation of the thing she rejects exists: spiritual world/unseen world/or whatever you want to call it.

Diana
I feel that it is really not necessary to go around slotting this person or that person as "spiritual" or not depending on whether they subscribe to your belief system. There happen to be a lot of belief systems out there.

Dottie

I don't think I have seen anyone do that here at least to my knowledge nor on the former Ark. Who cares if they subscribe to my paritucular belief system whatever that is. My personal belief system consists of a fact I have found to be true: there is a spiritual reality that is unseen by the naked eye but yet can be felt if one so wishes to check it out.

And Apops as a whole look to all the great religions for learning. They are not set to one particular group of beliefs that anihilate the others; they are inclusive.

Diana
I don't mean this to sound terribly testy toward you, Dottie, I really admire your recent explorations and would like to sincerely urge you on!

Dottie

Diana, I kind of grew up on the wc list. Testy is a small word compared to what I experienced over there. I trust you.

Dottie:

It seems to me, Diana, you contemplate it or at least are willing to think on it.

Diana:
Of course I do. Doesn't everybody?

Dottie

I don't think so. And I think 'so what if they don't'. But we can also at why a man like Peter Staudenmaier, unbeliever in the spiritual worlds, thinks he knows of what a man like Dr. Steiner, believer in spiritual worlds, thinks. I mean to the point he claim Steiner was an aethist at one point in his life. I mean truly Diana how ridiculous. And to prove his point he looks to the book A Philosophy of Freedom and claims only the apops who defend Dr. Steiner on the critics don't know of this fact: they are ignorant of their own history and he, Peter, knows better.

Diana
Why do anthroposophists think they are the only people in town who wonder and work on these questions?

Dottie

I don't think they do. And I have'nt heard anyone ever say something like this. Just because apops hold true to what they find or study does not mean they judge others to not be working on spirit questions. If anything, it seems to me, they know that all spirits for the most part work on these questions, even if it is not known outwardly to a person living their lives unawares of this spiritual reality. Dr. Steiner had a great respect for many of the great philosophers who did not hold the spirit worlds as a reality. He dug where their minds took them as they truly fought to come to an understanding. And Peter uses these thoughts as his proof of Steiners aetheist moments as well.

Diana
I don't try to "know higher worlds" a la Steiner's plan these days, no - I find it a tad narrowly defined. :)

Dottie

Yeah, well that book is a hard book for many people once it gets past a certain point. I even find it hard for many of his students to embrace the simple Cristic understanding that call us to a higher degree of reverance for all.

Have you read the book? I was truly inspired by the various ideas of reverance to all that is around us. It seems to me that the critics took that to mean we had to obey others and so forth. I feel they miss the heart part of how when one lives a reverant life towards all living beings grace abounds in so many ways and we are truly enriched in our lives as we grow older. It doesn't take being an anthroposophists to understand this concept.

And what is so great about Steiner is this I just found in A Philosophy of Freedom:

No outside authority, however benign or exalted, can motivate a free deed. Steiner emphatically rejects obedience. It is not an appropriate motivating force to free individuals. If my moral decisions merely conform to social norms and ethical codes, "I am just a higher form of robot." Instead of trying to obey, I should strive "to see why any given principle should work as a motive." Even the most high minded obediance is not free unless I have first decided for myself why this code should govern me at this moment.

I find you to be a great thinker and I thought of you when I bought this book called Intuitive Thinking As a Spiritual Path. I may not be aa great thinker in the minds of all but I can recognize them:) I was thinking this would be a good book for many people apops or not. It's amazing to lift oneself out of everyone elses thoughts and to think ones own and to know the route one has taken to know ones own thought. I imagine many other great philophers must speak to the same thing although I have not read them.

Diana
I don't want to speak for Sharon, but I think it is true that Sharon set out to find something - something that nobody had bothered to even mention the existence of to her before she uprooted her life to join a Steiner community, not even knowing it was a religious movement.

Dottie

And that is something that many people on this list and also those who dared to speak up on the critics can empathize with. I know I definitely can and I have heard others say the same thing.

Where the problem comes in is that Sharon wants to show the occult understandings of Steiner when she has none. She can show the words and that is all. And for someone like me that is great. But she does a great disservice to Steiner because how she interprets his work was not his intent. Peter Staudemaier does the same thing but he is well aware of his own agenda. He has not been hurt the way Sharon feels inside for her and her family. He is a man who has lost all self respect when he can knowingly put words together that do not represent the words of the man he deems to understand. His two word quotes and rest inuendo bespeaks ill of him and I truly do not understand why he would do that. The only thought I have is that he is such a conservative hard fought aethist that aims to prove his point by taking Steiner on. Only he can't because he has no leg to stand on other than his quippy 'if it does not fit you must aquit' way of bespeaking history.

Sharon on the other hand is an extremely bright caring woman who has a lot to offer and she was deeply hurt by her particular warldorf school in many different ways not the least being that she was a FreeThinker (atheistic leanings) and was not cleared that this scholl has religious/spiritual underpinnings.

But I think she does herself a huge and I mean huge disservice in that she tries to interpret from her particular set of beliefs that of a man who holds the opposite to be true. I have a great respect for her and it does sadden me that she seems not to be able to realize how her belief sets get in the way of correctly interpreting what Dr. Steiner was sharing. She does not have to agree with him, and can completely go the opposite way, but to say she knows what he was intending to say really does her and others who may not know of her hardened hurt heart, regarding this particular experience) a diservice.

Diana
After it had all gone wrong, you too might set out to find the reasons.

Dottie

Again, I am right there with you as are others who so spoke in favor of Lisa and others. And you will find many who can understand this.

Where the issue is, is that in order to show their point one has to demonize Steiner. One has to take Steiners words out of context to show that Steiner thinks giving children medicine and allowing them to die is part of their karma.

Diana
Especially if many lifetimes are factored in. I really could see where, if multiple lifetimes were part of the picture, critics and anthroposophists might alternate incarnations. :)

Dottie

And this is why I refuse, or at least hope to refuse, judging others by who they are today. I take in the concept that these are all my teachers and how I react or treat them is my way of living this particular concept.

And it may seem funny to you and then to others but I agree about the possibility of alternating in the manner you speak above. And this thought keeps me humble. And it is true that Dr. Steiner speaks of this very concept which is where I picked it up from. And that is reverance towards others, for the mystery is not revealed and is in fact hidden. Go figure:)

Dottie

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From: winters_diana
Date: Sat Jan 24, 2004 7:07 am
Subject: steiner on science, or why are left handers mistreated?

Well, Peter Staudenmaier and Peter Farrell have saved my butt on this one, and I am very grateful, since I worship in the great Cult of Peter (all hail Peter!) :)

Seriously thank you to both Peters.

I do not mean to offend you, Daniel, but it honestly is not a topic that interests me greatly. The parts that interest me, I can find in a jiffy. (Pages are dog-eared.) :)

I think Peter S. is correct that it is you, rather than me, who took a rather concrete statement such as "Steiner spoke against" something and demanded I defend it as if I had, or should have, written a dissertation on Steiner's overall position on a rather large topic. I alluded to Steiner's attitudes toward science in a discussion of why some of his followers today continue to believe (against scientific evidence) that left-handedness is a defect requiring remediation. I am not, therefore, required to write a treatise on Steiner's views on science, or the compatibility of his views with science.

I do maintain that if you speak "for" science on Monday, or declare your own work to be based on the scientific method, but on Tuesday you proclaim that in the future humans will live on Venus, you are likely to be remembered as a person whose views were not compatible with modern science, and not many people (outside a very small group of loyal followers) will even be interested in straightening out why you held such contradictory positions. Still to my own argument it is irrelevant. Inarguably the movement has been slow to notice, or care, that "science" today does not support "remediation" of left-handedness. I should have perhaps left people to wonder for themselves whether this attitude might have anything to do with the founder's stated positions regarding modern science.

I would suggest there may still be a tendency among anthroposophists and Waldorf teachers to reassure themselves that, although they recognize that some of their methods aren't supported by "science," that's just because science hasn't caught up with them spiritually. This attitude itself, of course, is anti-scientific, and if Steiner really thought the scientific method should be used (I do "get" that he viewed himself as applying the scientific method to spiritual researches), then these people would really be working against Steiner's own indications. I suggest, though, that the contradictions are just too much to work with, in practical terms, for people "on the ground" (i.e., Waldorf teachers), and the result is that people usually do what they were taught or encouraged to do by mentors, other faculty at the school etc., for reasons that are really neither "scientific" nor "spiritual."

Most Waldorf teachers probably do not have time to sit around reading the latest neuropsychology research. Like most of us, they keep doing what is "done" in their small world.

you imply that because Steiner appears to be against science in one recommendation, we can infer that Steiner was against science.

This is your mistake, Daniel, I don't imply that. I said he frequently spoke against science. It led you to feel the need to see Steiner's overall views on science clarified, but it was not necessary to my purposes, and this has nothing to do with my "honesty."

Even in his day, there was no "science" showing anything defective about left-handedness, so for Steiner to blithely advise teachers that of course left handers should be switched, was in itself an affront against science. Scientists don't make practical recommendations based on thin air, the Akashic Record, or karma.

It would be a lot more interesting to me if you had any actual information, Daniel, or even suggestions, on why Steiner may have spoken "against science" on the treatment of the left-handed. Is there any evidence, anywhere, of any sort, to your knowledge, that Steiner knew anything about handedness, causes of, effects of, indications or contra-indications for remediation, methods of remediation, psychological effects on children thereof, etc.? (For instance, for a long time it was thought that switching left-handers might cause stuttering. This theory also has now been discredited.) Did Steiner have anything to contribute on this topic? Did Steiner have any qualifications to contribute to a discussion of handedness? Where did he get his degree in neuropsychology or even teacher training? (Did he ever say anything else on handedness, laterality, brain hemispheric dominance, etc., that is now taken seriously by scientists? not to my knowledge) How many left-handed children did Steiner observe? How many right-handed children did Steiner observe, and how did he reach his conclusion that they differed spiritually from left-handed children? Did he ever, even once, work with a child personally to switch their hands? What reason is there to believe that he did not just shoot his mouth off when some Waldorf teacher asked him his opinion about left-handed children?

Even several dozen examples would not suffice. It would be necessary to examine the work of Steiner as a whole.

If I wished to write a treatise on Rudolf Steiner and the Modern Scientific Outlook, yes, but I have almost no interest in this topic. (Which is why I was pleased to see people who do step in.)

Nor is it logical to judge Steiner by the behaviour of his followers

I have no interest in "judging Steiner," hence your difficulty in even forcing me to debate his views of science. I was discussing the treatment of the left-handed in Waldorf schools; it is you who sees Steiner, by implication, "judged," and reacts emotionally.

Left-handed children are still sometimes switched in Waldorf schools. The practice is anachronistic, often harmful, and should be abandoned. The reasons it is done are occult-derived.

I thank Peter Staudenmaier and Peter Farrell for their useful and relevant contributions to the topic.
Diana

...................................................................................................................................

From: dottie zold
Date: Sat Jan 24, 2004 9:30 am
Subject: Re: steiner on science, or why are left handers mistreated?

Diana
I have no interest in "judging Steiner," hence your difficulty in even forcing me to debate his views of science.

Dottie

Wow, look how fast the cult of Peter works: live in action. Suddenly we have Daniel 'forcing' Diana into a debate. Whew. Pretty sickening to me. Sorry Diana, but this is too much. You should see what this looks like from the outside the cult of Peter.

Diana
I was discussing the treatment of the left-handed in Waldorf schools; it is you who sees Steiner, by implication, "judged," and reacts emotionally.

Dottie

Reacts emotionally? Oh jeez I am having icky flashbacks of stupid critic speak. Can't you speak your own mind without needing help from the two Peters to clarify for you 'what was really going on'?

Diana
Left-handed children are still sometimes switched in Waldorf schools. The practice is anachronistic, often harmful, and should be abandoned. The reasons it is done are occult-derived.

Dottie

Bullshit. They are Steiner derived. He was a human being just like you and all the rest. He lived a life and he studied and he got what was going on and he sought to share it. He was human Diana, get it? God, how quick your response turned once informed by the two Peters. Ick! Seriously.

Diana
I thank Peter Staudenmaier and Peter Farrell for their useful and relevant contributions to the topic.

Dottie

You must be kidding me right? Can you not trust your own mind and your own thoughts without having them tell you "what was really being said"?

Too bad,

Dottie

...................................................................................................................................

From: Daniel Hindes
Date: Sat Jan 24, 2004 8:48 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] steiner on science, or why are left handers mistreated?

Diana,
I don't read the WC list. If you are going to refer to Peter Staudenmaier and Peter Farrell's statements on a conversation over here, could you please forward the texts you are relying on so we can read them here? I know Tarjei sent us his response to things Staudenmaier said to this list, but if you are going to reference the entirety of their statements, I think it would be helpful for you to include them here.

Daniel

 

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