Steiner about Modern Science

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Sun Jan 18, 2004 11:55 am
Subject: Steiner about modern science

Sorry, I forgot to change the title of my previous post containing the first set of quotes. But here is more, and this is still only the tip of the iceberg concerning documentation to the fact that Rudolf Steiner did not reject, but wholeheartedly endorsed modern science.

There are other quotes, of course, that show Steiner to have been critical of certain attitudes connected to science. It is a gross misrepresentation, however - a misrepresentation that in certain quarters is based upon a curious combination of ignorance and ill will - to say that Steiner's critical thinking with regard to science - which was basically about the limitations and inadequacy of materialistic science - is equivalent to a rejection of reason and truth in science, and a rejection of the proper application of materialistic science.

So here we go again:

"Clairvoyance, which is the basis of the modern science of initiation, has always existed." - Knowledge and Initiation - Cognition of the Christ Through Anthroposophy; Cognition of the Christ Through Anthroposophy (London, 15th April, 1922, GA 211)

"I soon recognized that the achievements which modern science does grant Goethe are the inessential ones, whereas precisely what is significant is overlooked. The individual discoveries would really have been made even without Goethe's-research; but science will be deprived of his marvelous conception of nature as long as it does not draw this directly from him. This realization gave the direction that had to be taken by the introductions to my edition of Goethe's scientific works. They had to show that every single view expressed by Goethe is to be traced back to the totality of his genius." - The Theory of Knowledge Implicit in Goethe's World Conception, Foreword to the First Edition (GA 002)

"These questions become especially evident in connection with modern science, yet do not exclusively concern those who occupy themselves seriously with science, but they affect everyone who takes an all-round interest in modern life." - Human Life in the Light of Spiritual Science (Liestal, October 16, 1916, GA 35)

"As this evolutionary epoch has led of necessity to the discoveries of modern science it will lead of necessity to Spiritual Science as well." - ibid

"The Christian mysticism of Eckhardt, Tauler, and others, is a result of the permeation of feeling and sensation with Christianity. The science of the sense world and its results in life are the consequences of the other side of the soul's capacities. We owe the progress in the field of outer material culture entirely to this separation of capacities. Because the human faculties that have the brain as their instrument turned one-sidedly to physical life, they were able to attain to the increase in power that made possible modern science and technology." - An Outline of Occult Science, IV THE EVOLUTION OF THE COSMOS AND MAN

"But we have also to investigate this interaction between the human and extra-human world with all the resources of modern science." - Spiritual Science and Medicine, Lecture V (Dornach, GA 312)

"We have already availed ourselves of all the achievements of modern science and taken them into account." - Spiritual Science and Medicine, Lecture XX (Lecture: (Dornach, 9th April, 1920, GA 312)

"A true understanding of modern science, not the dilettante understanding to be found even in University Professors, but understanding that is free from abstract theorising and materialistic conjectures, standing firmly upon the basis of facts and not going beyond them, can find from science itself the proofs of the spiritual truths of Rosicrucianism." - Theosophy of the Rosicrucian, I The New Form of Wisdom (Berlin, 22nd May, 1907, GA 99)

Tarjei Straume

"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


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