Skull and Bones

Studying Steiner for Years

 

From: Peter Staudenmaier
Date: Wed Mar 31, 2004 10:29 pm
Subject: studying Steiner for years

Hi again Dottie, you wrote to Diana:

Diana, it can not be helped that most of your group aligns itself with atheism, humanism and so forth. It seems to be the running theme over there. For me it is a so what until it becomes that you folks think you know better than those who have been studying this man for years.

You've made this same argument before, and I've never understood it. Why would it be the least bit surprising that some atheists or humanists know Steiner's work better than some anthroposophists do, including anthroposophists who have studied Steiner for years? It sounds like you believe that people who feel a strong affinity for a given body of ideas and therefore study this body of ideas intensively will automatically have a better grasp of the ideas than people who are basically critical of the same body of ideas. According to this reasoning, Stalinists would have a better understanding of Stalin's work than critics of Stalinism would. (Side note to Tarjei, who finds analogies a little too logically challenging: this is not a comparison of anthroposophy and Stalinism.) If that is indeed what you believe, could you explain why you believe it? If that's not what you believe, could you explain what you mean? Thanks,

Peter

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From: dottie zold
Date: Wed Mar 31, 2004 10:38 pm
Subject: Re: studying Steiner for years

Peter:

If that is indeed what you believe, could you explain why you believe it? If that's not what you believe, could you explain what you mean?

Again Peter, I am waiting and have been waiting for at least two weeks if not more for your response to Mr. Farells points on honesty?

Thanks,
Dottie

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From: Peter Staudenmaier
Date: Thu Apr 1, 2004 10:13 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Re: studying Steiner for years

Hi Dottie,

I've been ignoring your questions about Steiner's honesty because I've already addressed them very thoroughly, both on this list (in the exchange with you, Tarjei, and others about atheism) and on the waldorf critics list (particularly in my extensive replies to you). As I explained in those contexts, I do not think that Steiner was for the most part deliberately dishonest in his public writings and lectures. I think that Peter Farrell makes a very good point about Steiner's obligations to his audience, and to extent that I was able to follow the physics examples (which is a very limited extent) I think Peter F's concerns are valid. But I'm not persuaded that these examples indicate dishonesty in the standard sense. I think that Steiner believed what he was saying, and that he therefore was not dishonest.

I once again encourage you to explain your position on the relative comprehension of Steiner's doctrines by anthroposophists and by critics of anthroposophy.

Peter

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From: at
Date: Mon Apr 5, 2004 8:28 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] studying Steiner for years

Peter Staudenmaier to Dottie:

Why would it be the least bit surprising that some atheists or humanists know Steiner's work better than some anthroposophists do, including anthroposophists who have studied Steiner for years?

Daniel:

I am not at all surprised that some people (yourself included) seem to think that they understand Steiner better than the people who are flat out telling you what you have missed. What I find difficult to grasp is how someone like yourself, who has heard for years that your grasp of Steiner is incomplete, continue to posture as if you had nothing more to learn on the subject. Just because you believe and posture like you know a lot about Steiner does not make your knowledge either deep or comprehensive, or even correct. Further, I find it curious that you always run away whenever the discussion gets to the weak points of your argument. You can get some mileage out of claiming that you are here to test your understanding and improve your comprehension, but your actual behavior belies this claim.

Daniel Hindes

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From: dottie zold
Date: Tue Apr 6, 2004 3:21 am
Subject: Re: studying Steiner for years

Peter: [Daniel:]

Peter Staudenmaier to Dottie:

Why would it be the least bit surprising that some atheists or humanists know Steiner's work better than some anthroposophists do, including anthroposophists who have studied Steiner for years?

Wow, missed this one. You must be joking Peter. Please. You and Dugan experts on Anthroposophy. I like you think big Peter but unfortunately you have to put a little work into the concepts which seems outright impossible for you and for Dan. You'd get an F is this was a class on understanding the basic works of Dr. Steiner.

Red Pill or Blue Pill... which one Peter?

Dottie

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From: Peter Staudenmaier
Date: Tue Apr 6, 2004 10:03 am
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] studying Steiner for years

Hi agin Daniel, you wrote:

I am not at all surprised that some people (yourself included) seem to think that they understand Steiner better than the people who are flat out telling you what you have missed.

If this really doesn't surprise you, then how come you sound so indignant about it much of the time? I do know quite a bit more about Steiner's racial and ethnic doctrines than you do. That has become painfully obvious in the course of our exchanges. I am confident that you know quite a bit more than I do about all sorts of other interesting aspects of anthroposophy. Surely that can't be too hard to recognize. It is a very common feature of public discussion.

What I find difficult to grasp is how someone like yourself, who has heard for years that your grasp of Steiner is incomplete, continue to posture as if you had nothing more to learn on the subject.

That isn't the posture I adopt. There are large swaths of anthroposophy that I know relatively little about. I've noted that several times before.

Further, I find it curious that you always run away whenever the discussion gets to the weak points of your argument.

I don't run away from arguments. In fact some of you seem to hold this against me; in your eyes it has something or other to do with wanting to have the last word.

You can get some mileage out of claiming that you are here to test your understanding and improve your comprehension, but your actual behavior belies this claim.

You mean because I'm not shy about telling people who have been reading Steiner for thirty years that they missed some important chunks, and that their grasp of several historical concepts is rather shaky? I don't see how that sort of behavior would belie my claim about improving comprehension. Nobody's comprehension is improved by ignoring errors. Do you disagree?

Peter

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From: at
Date: Wed Apr 7, 2004 4:19 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] studying Steiner for years

Hi agin Daniel, you wrote:

I am not at all surprised that some people (yourself included) seem to think that they understand Steiner better than the people who are flat out telling you what you have missed.

Peter Staudenmaier:

If this really doesn't surprise you, then how come you sound so indignant about it much of the time?

Daniel:

If I sound indignant, it is because people like yourself refuse to learn anything you don't want to know, and refuse to attempt to understand even basic things that are presented to you.

Peter Staudenmaier:

I do know quite a bit more about Steiner's racial and ethnic doctrines than you do. That has become painfully obvious in the course of our exchanges.

Daniel:

Really? You haven't shown me a quote yet that I haven't seen. I haven't the time to go through and show you exactly how each of your quotes are out of context, and by all accounts this would be a thoroughly useless exercise, and you simply reject every idea you dislike, often rather contemptuously.

Daniel wrote:

What I find difficult to grasp is how someone like yourself, who has heard for years that your grasp of Steiner is incomplete, continue to posture as if you had nothing more to learn on the subject.

Peter Staudenmaier:

That isn't the posture I adopt. There are large swaths of anthroposophy that I know relatively little about. I've noted that several times before.

Daniel:

And I have repeatedly pointed out how this hinders your understanding of the quotes that you rather arbitrarily bandy about. But you have shown no interest in learning anything on this subject. You mind is already made up, empty gestures to the contrary notwithstanding.

Daniel wrote:

Further, I find it curious that you always run away whenever the discussion gets to the weak points of your argument.

Peter Staudenmaier:

I don't run away from arguments. In fact some of you seem to hold this against me; in your eyes it has something or other to do with wanting to have the last word.

Daniel:

Sure you run away from arguments. You still have not explained how the formative forces of Jupiter are superior to the other planets, despite telling me with all confidence that this was the key to understanding Steiner's racist ideology as expressed in GA 121. You run away from all discussion on this. For years.

Daniel wrote:

You can get some mileage out of claiming that you are here to test your understanding and improve your comprehension, but your actual behavior belies this claim.

Peter Staudenmaier:

You mean because I'm not shy about telling people who have been reading Steiner for thirty years that they missed some important chunks, and that their grasp of several historical concepts is rather shaky? I don't see how that sort of behavior would belie my claim about improving comprehension. Nobody's comprehension is improved by ignoring errors. Do you disagree?

Daniel:

No, it is not that your "educational efforts" directed at Anthroposophists are worthless. Rather, the exchange runs entirely in one direction. You lecture from your high horse about things you barely know a thing about, and then refuse to listen to anything that comes in response. Your small mind is entirely closed on the issue, despite frequent statements that mimic the words of serious scholars seeking to learn.

Daniel Hindes

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From: Peter Staudenmaier
Date: Wed Apr 7, 2004 8:34 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] studying Steiner for years

Hi Daniel, you wrote:

You haven't shown me a quote yet that I haven't seen.

Well, except for that little Wagner incident a couple days ago.....

You mind is already made up

It's true that my mind is made up that talking about higher races and lower races is racist. I'd still like to hear why your mind is not made up on this.

the exchange runs entirely in one direction.

That is indeed often the case here. I'm not sure what I might do to rectify that situation, however.

then refuse to listen to anything that comes in response.

I listen to pretty much everything that comes in response. It's a fascinating view of contemporary anthroposophist beliefs about race.

Peter

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From: at
Date: Thu Apr 8, 2004 1:28 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] studying Steiner for years

Hi Daniel, you wrote:

You haven't shown me a quote yet that I haven't seen.

Peter Staudenmaier:

Well, except for that little Wagner incident a couple days ago.....

Daniel:

I read the 1930's printing in 1996, before GA92 was published. As I explained, those are not Steiner's words, and I don't take it to be definitive of his position.

Daniel wrote:

You mind is already made up

Peter Staudenmaier:

It's true that my mind is made up that talking about higher races and lower races is racist. I'd still like to hear why your mind is not made up on this.

Daniel:

That is not the only thing your mind is made up on.


Daniel Hindes

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