Thinking and Pre-birth Experience

From: Mike Helsher
Date: Sun Dec 7, 2003 10:41 am
Subject: Thinking and pre-birth experience

I recently read the first two lectures in " The Foundations of Human Experience" (the study of man). I was taken aback by the idea that our thinking stems from our pre-birth experience and driven by antipathy. I don't have the book with me right now, so I my have this all screwed up. I do remember being fascinated and somewhat baffled by it all. Antipathy relating to the past; sympathy relating to the seeds of will and the future...

I wonder what lies in the center?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Truth and Love

Mike Helsher


From: golden3000997
Date: Sun Dec 7, 2003 3:55 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Thinking and pre-birth experience

Hi Mike,

I would recommend getting the book & re-reading it, because your question encompasses so much of its content. Before people fall all over themselves with generalizations, those particular points were specifically brought out in terms of education and Threefold Man. We educate the Thinking (from the past) through our "anti-pathy" that is born of the karma between the teacher and the child, but we educate the Will when we transform our inner antipathy to "sympathy" ie, love (active - not mushy!). He is specifically referring to the teacher's process of self-education and self-development.

We discussed in teacher training, and I have found this to be true in my experience, that it is easy to walk into someone else's class and feel really comfortable with those children and have a nice, fun time with them and "teach" them lots of cool stuff. But when one is confronted with one's own class, the situation is very, very different! One wonders "How did I end up with these little monsters?" They seem destined to give their teacher trouble - and they are! Just like I always advised the parents of the children I was teaching - the destiny of your child is to drive you crazy! (and vice versa). The whole point is transforming one's karma with one's own child or children or one's class full of children. It is in this process that real love in action can take place, real karmic healing and real education.

Have you ever as a parent, looked at one of your kid's friends who was over visiting and whispered in the secret closet of your mind "why can't I trade my kid for that one?" That's karma for you!!! If it was easy, you wouldn't need the relationship! I told my parents that they were ancient Romans who sent me (a poor little Christian) into the arena with the lions. Come to think of it, they laughed, but didn't deny it!! (My last serious boyfriend in this lifetime was the centurion who pinched my bottom on my way through the Colosseum tunnel!)

I always refer to my particular brand of teaching and, indirectly, parenting as a cross between Rudolf Steiner and Erma Bombeck with a healthy dose of Bill Cosby thrown into the mix. I don't have any children in this lifetime (gee, what did I do RIGHT?) but I have been a live in nanny in quite a few, widely disparate families, so I have lived in the mix, so to speak and know it intimately.

In the preface to her book "Motherhood, the Second Oldest Profession", my special guru, Erma Bombeck writes about receiving a letter from a woman in prison for murdering her own children. The woman found some of Erma's books in the prison library and she said that if she had known that she was allowed to laugh at herself and the situation, she probably wouldn't have done what she did. I cried when I read that, as Erma certainly did. Humor is, indeed, a life and death matter. Sometimes, I think certain Waldorf people could use a healthy dose!

Happy Second Advent Sunday!


From: Michael Helsher
Date: Sun Dec 7, 2003 5:04 pm
Subject: Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] thinking and the pre-birth experience

Wow Christine, your post really rocks. I have the book and I am trying to find time to read it. But like most of the staples, it is not an easy read.

I really loved the real-life experience that you shared; this speaks volumes to me. I learned about carpentry in a brand new trade school with a wood-shop big enough to build a house in, and that we did on several occasions. We had all the best tools (but mostly bad teachers) and did get some hands on experience, but life in the real world has been my best teacher. I do now appreciate the foundation that I established there though.

So, some 25 years later, here I am building up an even stronger foundation. But this time I think that I have some much better teachers (yourself included).

That was truely a sad story about the mother that killed her children. And I agree that "humor is a life and death matter". And I also know many Waldorf people that could use a good dose as well. Doesn't the big wooden statue that Steiner carved have a representation of humor at the top?

I like the High School training that I am in now because Humor is emphasized as a must when dealing with teenagers, and we had many genuine laughs this past summer. We even made up a game called "Steiner says" and quoted all kinds of steinerific Lingo at each other.

To quote Emily Sailers again: "you have to laugh at yourself, because you'll cry your eyes out if you don't."

(incedentally, the Indigo girls do a smokin live version (IMO) of "Tangled up in Blue")

Thanks again Christine

Truth and Love

Mike Helsher


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