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There is nothing programmatic about this. It is not a question of applying principles, but of responding to reality, that is, to the individual children, each of which Introduction ix brings to earth certain inherent characteristics that we must learn to intuit and nurture.

Meeting the children besides the parents are those we call teachers, who are also individual beings.

Between the two, individual teachers and students, the relationship that is education germinates, grows, and, if successful, flowers.

To become a teacher in this context is more like becoming a gardener. Observing the unfolding of children in this way, we notice first that the process of entering earthly life occurs through progressive, developmental stages.

Steiner explains that these begin before birth, continue throughout life, and constitute an interconnected whole, so that what happens earlier has a consequence later.

He also emphasizes the importance of recognizing that they are not fixed. Again, it is necessary to be absolutely realistic and responsive to what is before one.

And what is before is always an individual. Learning to work with these, a teacher becomes an artist, aware that what he or she does has significance for world evolution.

In the second lecture, he considers the process if incarnation in terms of a whole human life, taking the German poets Goethe and Schiller as his examples.

These would have been familiar to his audience; had he been talking in America today, he might well have drawn on Emerson and Thoreau.

At every opportunity, he moves from the detail to the whole, from the specific to the universal.

Above all, Steiner practices what he preaches: these lecture are alive. The volume falls into three movements.

We begin with lectures that weave around the development of the child into a full human being of body, soul, and spirit. This allows us to understand the practical pedagogic aspects of the education.

Finally, in his last lectures, Steiner turns to questions arising under the general rubric of the temperaments as these relate, once again, to body, soul, and spirit.

Any lecture by Rudolf Steiner also has its own incomparable value. Yet this sequence is truly extraordinary and incomparable in a different way, both because it is the last that Steiner gave on education and because, in his last months, Steiner was graced with a remarkable Introduction xi clarity and penetration that allowed him to address old topics as well as new with uncanny spiritual luminosity, precision, and sheer humanity.

Need for Understanding 1 The the Human Being July 17, F or quite a few years now, education has been an area of civilized cultural activity that we nurture in the anthroposophic movement.

And it will become obvious in these lectures that it is specifically in this area that we can look back with some satisfaction at what we have done.

Our schools have existed for only a few years, so I cannot really speak of accomplishment, but we can speak of the beginning of something that, even outside the anthroposophic movement, has already left an impression on groups interested in the spiritual life of culture today.

Anthroposophic education and teaching is based on knowledge of the human being, which is acquired only on the basis of spiritual science; it works from our knowledge of the whole human being as body, soul, and spirit.

Initially, such a statement may be seem obvious. The situation will soon be obvious, however, once we see the practical results that arise from any area of human activity that is based on spiritual science.

I think that anyone who becomes aware of such a school, whether from merely hearing about its practices or in a more intimate way, finds that its methods arise from an anthroposophic basis and are essentially different from the typical school today.

This is because, wherever we look today, we find a gap between what people think or theorize and what they actually do in practice; in our present civilization, theory and practice have become widely separated.

Here, all sorts of things are learned theoretically. For example, people think through the details of administration in economic affairs.

They form intentions, but those intentions cannot be performed, because no matter how carefully they are thought through, they do not meet the reality of life.

I would like clarify this so we can understand each other. He writes up a business plan, considering everything related to this business and organizing it according to his intentions.

Then he acts on his theories and abstract thoughts, but here they must deal with reality. Certain things are The Need for Understanding the Human Being 3 done; invented ideas are put into practice, but the thinking does not fit real life.

In fact, something is carried over into real life that does not correspond to reality. A business conducted in this way may continue for awhile, and those who start such businesses may consider themselves to be very practical.

Today we can hear truly practical people speak of such theorists, who enter the business life and introduce their theories with a heavy hand.

If enough capital is available, they may be able to continue for awhile, but with time the business fails or may be absorbed into another, more established business.

Usually when this happens, very little attention is given to how much genuine, vital effort was wasted, how many lives ruined, and how many people were injured or hindered in life.

In such cases, however, their practicality has not come through understanding but through the intellect. They introduced something into reality without considering the actual situation.

When a decision is made to build a bridge, it is essential to use the knowledge of mechanics to ensure that the bridge will hold up to what is required of it; otherwise, the first train to cross it will plunge into the water.

Such things have happened, and even today we see the results of defective mechanical construction. If we consider the practice of medicine, we see immediately that it is not so obvious whether or not the conditions of reality have been properly considered.

Here, too, the procedure is the same; something is theorized and then applied as a method of healing. Likewise, in the realm of education, it is not always possible to see whether growing children are being educated according to their needs or according to the fanciful methods of experimental psychology.

Educational goals are frequently formed in this way. But how are they carried into life? They sit firmly in the head; that is where they are.

Teachers know in their heads that a child must be taught arithmetic one way, geography another, and so on, and then the intentions are to be put into practice.

Teachers must consider all that they have learned and recall that, according to the precepts of scientific educational methods, they must proceed in a particular way.

Then, when faced with putting their knowledge into practice, they recall various theoretical principles and apply them in an external way.

What happened to such teachers is the same thing we are forced to observe with sad hearts, daily and hourly: the fact that people pass one another by in life; that people have no sense for really getting to know one another.

It is the failure to acknowledge others and the lack of interest that people should show toward one another. In everyday life, we must accept this state of affairs; it is the destiny of modern humanity at the present time.

But such aloofness reaches its apex when the teachers of children and young people stand separate and apart from their students, while employing conventional scientific methods in a completely external way.

When a bridge collapses, we can see that the laws of mechanics have been applied incorrectly, but wrong educational methods are not so obvious.

People today are comfortable only when it comes to mechanical thinking, which can always determine whether things have been thought out rightly or wrongly, and which has led to the most brilliant achievements in modern civilization.

This is clear from the fact that humanity today has confidence only in mechanical thinking. We experiment with children because we are no longer able to approach their hearts and souls.

It is, of course, always easier to criticize than to build constructively. As a matter of fact, however, what I have said does not come from such an inclination or desire; it comes from observing life in a direct way.

What kind of person does it take to pursue a calling based, for example, on knowledge of the human being? One must be objective.

This can be heard everywhere today, in every hole and corner. Of course, we must be objective, but the question has to do with whether or not such objectivity is based on a lack of attention to what is essential in any given situation.

In general, people have the idea that love is the most subjective thing there is in life, and that it would be impossible for anyone to love and be objective at the same time.

Consequently, when people speak of knowledge today, love is never mentioned in a serious way. True, when young people apply themselves to acquiring knowledge, it is considered appropriate to encourage them to do so with love, but this is usually done while the whole presentation of knowledge is very unlikely to develop love in anyone.

Nevertheless, for real life, love is the greatest power of knowledge. And without this love, it is impossible to acquire knowledge of the human being, which forms the basis of any true art of education.

Let us try to picture this love, and see how it can work in the special sphere of an education based on knowledge The Need for Understanding the Human Being 7 of the human being, as drawn from spiritual science, or anthroposophy.

Children are entrusted to us for their education. If our thinking in regard to education is based on spiritual science, we do not view a child as something to be developed toward some human ideal of society, or some such thing; a human ideal can be completely abstract.

Such a human ideal has already assumed as many forms as there are political parties, societies, and other interests. This is carried to extremes in Russia today.

In general, however, this is more or less the way people think today, though perhaps somewhat less radically. This is not the place to start for teachers who want to educate on the basis of spiritual science.

They do not idolize their own opinions. An abstract image of the human being, toward which children are to be led, is an idol; it has no reality.

Such teachers would at least touch some sort of reality, but the absurdity of saying such a thing would be obvious.

When we deal with young children, we are faced with beings who have not yet begun physical existence; they have brought down spirit and soul from pre-earthly worlds and plunged into the physical bodies provided by parents and ancestors.

We see a baby before us in the first days of life, having undeveloped features and unorganized, random movements.

Then, filled with reverent awe, we ask: What is it that is struggling to the surface? Thus, with heart and mind, we are led back to the human being, when soul and spirit lived in the spiritual, pre-earthly world, from which this child descended into the physical world.

And we might say: Little child, now that you have entered into earthly existence through birth, you are among human beings; previously, however, you were among spiritual, divine beings.

What once lived among spiritual divine beings descended to live among human beings. We see the divine manifested in the child. We have a sense of standing before an altar.

But there is one difference; in religious communities, it is normal for people to bring sacrificial offerings to their altars, so that those sacrifices can ascend into the spiritual world.

Now, however, we have a sense of standing before an altar turned the other way; the gods allow their grace to flow down in the form of divine spiritual beings, so that those beings, acting as messengers of the gods, may reveal what is essentially human on the altar of physical life.

We see in every child the revelation of divine spiritual, cosmic laws; we see the way God creates in the world. In its highest, most significant form this is revealed in the child.

Hence, every single child becomes a sacred mystery to us, because every child embodies this great question. It is not a question of how to educate children to approach some ideal that has been dreamed up; it is a question of how to nurture what the gods have sent to us in the earthly world.

We come to see The Need for Understanding the Human Being 9 ourselves as helpers of the divine spiritual world, and above all we learn to ask what will happen if we approach education with this attitude of mind.

True education proceeds from exactly this attitude. The important thing is to develop our teaching on the basis of this kind of thinking.

Again, it may seem as though something obvious is being said here, though in a slightly different way, but this is not the case.

A mental attitude such as I described cannot work in an abstract way; it must work spiritually, while always keeping the practical in view.

Such an attitude, however, can never be acquired by accepting theories that are unrelated and alien to life; it can be gained only when you have a sense for every expression of life and are able to go with love into all its manifestations.

There is a lot of discussion today about reforming education. Ever since the war, there has been talk of a revolution in education, and we have experienced this.

Every conceivable approach has been tried, and almost everyone is concerned one way or another about how to carry out these reforms. And so it goes.

There is much talk about methods of education, but do you see the kind of impression all this makes when, in an unbiased way, you look at what the various reform groups, down to the most radical, present as their educational programs?

One certainly gets the impression that people are very smart today. Indeed, all these solutions are tremendously clever.

And I do not say this with irony, but quite seriously. There has never been a time when there was as much ingenuity as there is in our time.

Paragraph And so on. Today, people of any profession, occupation, or social class can sit down together and work out these programs; everything we get, in paragraphs one through thirty, will be delightfully ingenious, because we really know exactly how to form theories.

People have never been so good at formulating things as they are today. Then a program, or several programs, can be submitted to a committee or legislature.

This again is very resourceful. Something may be changed, deleted, or added according to party opinion, and something very ingenious emerges, even if it is sometimes strongly partisan.

Nothing can be done with it, however, but this is really beside the point. Waldorf education never began with such a program.

The fact that we have to deal with reality might prove a hindrance, and so the result would be more stupid. With us, however, it has never been a matter of a program.

What is this reality? First, there were children, individual children with various characteristics. First and foremost, then, there were the children.

Then there were the teachers. You can adopt, as much as you like, the principle that children should be educated according to individuality this is part of every reform program , but absolutely nothing will come of it.

On the other hand, aside from the children, there are the teachers, and it is important to know what the teachers can accomplish with children.

The school must be run in such a way that we do not establish some abstract ideal; rather, we allow the school to develop out of the teachers and students.

Those teachers and students are not present in any sort of abstract way; they are very real, individual human beings.

That is the gist of the matter. Then, by virtue of necessity, we are led to build up a true education based on a real knowledge of the human being.

We cease to be theoretical and become practical in every detail. Waldorf education, the first teaching method based on anthroposophy, is in reality the practice of education as an art; thus it is possible to give only indications of what can be done in various situations.

Today, however, unrefined observation completely ignores the most important characteristics in the progressive stages of life.

I would say that we must draw some inspiration from spiritual science if we wish to develop the right sense for what we should bring to children.

People today know very little about the human being and about humankind in general. People imagine that our present state of existence is the same as it was in the fourteenth or sixteenth century and, indeed, that it has never been any different.

They picture the ancient Greeks or Egyptians as being pretty much the same as we are today. There is no interest, however, in penetrating the great differences between the historic and prehistoric epochs of humankind.

Let us study human beings as they appear to us today, beginning in infancy up to the change of teeth. We see very clearly that physical development runs parallel to the development of soul and spirit.

Everything that manifests as soul and spirit has an exact counterpart in the physical; both appear together, both develop out of the child together.

When children have gone through the change of teeth, we see how the soul is already freeing itself from the body.

On the one hand, we can follow the development of soul and spirit in children and, on the other, their physical development.

These two sides, however, have not yet clearly separated. If we continue to The Need for Understanding the Human Being 13 follow the development until the time between puberty and about the twenty-first year, the separation becomes much more defined, and then when we reach the twentyseventh or twenty-eighth year speaking now of modern humanity , we no longer see how the soul and spirit is connected with the physical body.

What a person does at this age can be perceived, on the one hand, in the life of soul and spirit and, on the other hand, in the physical life; but the two cannot be connected.

Nevertheless, this is not the way it has always been; it is merely a belief to think that it was. Spiritual science, studied anthroposophically, clearly shows us a fact that has simply not been noticed.

What we see in children at the present stage of human evolution persisted, at one time, right into extreme old age; in their being of soul and spirit, children are completely dependent on the physical body, and their physical nature depends completely on their being of soul and spirit.

The answer must be something like this: Such a man, in growing old, changed in terms of his physical nature, but, even at an extremely old age, he continued to feel as only very young people feel today.

Even in old age he sensed that his being of soul and spirit was dependent on his physical body. Today we no longer have the sense that our physical body depends on the way we think and feel.

But in ancient times, a dependence of this kind was experienced. They felt their life forces waning, but along with this physical decline they also experienced an increase of spiritual forces, brought about by the breaking up of the physical.

The soul was being freed of the physical body; this is how they experienced the beginning of this process of physical decline.

Having reached the age of a patriarch, the body was breaking up, and the soul was most able to free itself from the body, so that it was no longer within it.

This is why people looked up to the patriarchs with such devotion and reverence. They knew how it would be for them one day in old age.

In old age, one could know and understand things, penetrating to the heart of matters in a way that was not yet possible while one was still building up the physical body.

During those ancient times, one would be able to look into a world order that was both physical and spiritual. But this was in a very remote past.

Then came a time when people felt this interdependence of the physical and spiritual until only around the fiftieth year. This was followed by the Greek age.

The special value of the Greek epoch rests on the fact that they were able to feel the harmony between the spirit and the physical body.

The Greeks felt this harmony until their thirties or forties. In the circulation of the blood, they still experienced what united the soul with the physical.

The wonderful culture and art of the Greeks was based on this unity; it transformed everything theoretical into art and, at the same time, filled their art with wisdom.

In those times, sculptors worked in such a way that they had no need for models, because, in their own organization, they were aware of the forces that permeate the The Need for Understanding the Human Being 15 arms or legs, giving them form.

This was learned, for example, in the festival games. Today, however, even when such games are imitated, they have no meaning.

If, however, we have a sense for the development of humankind, we know what has really taken place in human evolution.

To be precise, we also know that today a parallel exists between the physical body and the spirit only until the age of twenty-seven or twenty-eight.

Most people observe this parallel only until the age of puberty. Thus, we know how divine spirit springs up and grows from the developing human being.

Our thoughts are thus directed to knowledge of the human being, based on the individuality in the soul.

If we absorb these universal historical aspects, we will also be able to approach every educational task in an appropriate way.

The teacher is thus surrounded by an atmosphere of reality, a real concept of the world, not one merely thought out and intellectual.

The teacher will then be surrounded by a world imbued with feeling. Now if we consider what has just been presented, we realize a remarkable fact.

We see that we are establishing an education that, by degrees, will represent in many ways the very opposite of the characteristic impulse in education today.

All sorts of comedians who have some knack for caricature frequently choose the school teacher as an object for the purpose of derision.

Even when teachers are versed in modern educational methods and take them into school with them, if they lack the means to understand the children they must deal with, how can they be anything but strangers to the world?

With the school systems we have today, one cannot be anything else; teachers are torn out of the world. We are faced, therefore, with a truly remarkable situation.

Teachers are alienated from the world, but they are nevertheless expected to train human beings to go out and prosper in the world.

Let us imagine, however, that the things we have been speaking of today become an accepted viewpoint.

The relationship between teachers and children is such that, in each individual child, a whole world is revealed, and not just a human world, but also a divine spiritual world manifested on earth.

In other words, the teacher perceives as many aspects of the world as there are children in the class. Through each child, the teacher looks into the wide world.

Thus, education becomes art. It is imbued with an awareness that whatever one does directly affects world evolution.

Teaching in this sense leads teachers, in the task of educating and developing human beings, to a lofty worldview. Such teachers are those who gain the ability to play a leading role in the great questions that face civilization.

The student will never outgrow such a teacher, as they so often do today. Consider this scenario in a school.

Imagine that a teacher has to educate according to some idea or preconceived image of the human being. Among them are two who, through an innate capacity and guided by destiny, happen to be far more gifted than the teacher herself.

She would want to shape them according with her educational ideal; anything else would be impossible.

And how does this turn out? Reality does not permit it, and the students outgrow their teacher. If, on the other hand, we educate according to reality, we nurture all that manifests in children as qualities of soul and spirit.

Thus, we are like gardeners with our plants. Do you think that gardeners know all the secrets of the plants they tend?

Plants contain many, many more secrets than gardeners understand, but they can tend them, nevertheless, and perhaps succeed best in caring for those that they do not yet know.

Such teachers know that they have no need to lead students toward some abstract ideal; rather, in the children, the divine is working in the human being, right through the physical body.

They do this through an outpouring love that permeates their work as educators. It is this mental attitude that is so essential.

It will deal with the educational value of understanding the human being and the cultural value of education.

I showed how, because spiritual science has an overall knowledge of the whole of human life from birth to death to the degree that this takes place on earth , it can correctly show us the essentials of childhood education.

It is easy to think that we can know how to educate children by simply observing the events of childhood and youth; but this is not enough.

On the contrary, it is like working with a plant; if you introduce a substance to the growing shoot, its effect shows up in the blossom or fruit.

People today usually study the children though perhaps less externally than I described yesterday to discover the best ways to help them.

This is not enough. Today I would like to lay some foundations on which I will show how we can observe the whole human life by means of spiritual science.

Yesterday, I said that human beings should be seen as made up of body, soul, and spirit. It is essential, therefore, to understand human life in such a way that we see events on earth as an outcome of life before birth.

All this is alive and active in us, and during earthly life we must prepare everything that will eventually pass through the gate of death and live again in the world of soul and spirit, beyond earthly life.

Consequently, we must come to understand how the suprasensory works into earthly life, because it is present between birth and death.

It acts in a hidden way within our bodily nature, and we cannot understand the body if we fail to understand the spiritual forces acting within it.

Let us now look at what I have just suggested. We can do this by considering actual examples. I would like to give you the examples of two people who are certainly familiar to you.

I chose them because I studied them both very intensely for many years. These are two men of genius; later, we will consider less gifted individuals.

We will see then that anthroposophy does not speak only in general, abstract ways, but penetrates real human beings with such understanding that knowledge of the human being is shown to have practical reality for life.

By choosing Goethe and Schiller as my examples, and by approaching them indirectly, I hope to show how knowledge of the human being is acquired through spiritual science.

Let us consider Goethe and Schiller, just as they appeared outwardly during their lives. In each case, we will look at the whole personality.

Goethe was an individual who entered life in a remarkable way. This shows how very difficult it was for his spirit to enter physical incarnation.

But once this occurred and Goethe had overcome the resistance of this physical body, he was completely in it. At about sixteen, he began to study law.

He also studied art, music, anatomy, and chemistry. It represented his youthful protest against the establishment and a demand for intellectual freedom.

The writing of Goethe's Faust, the best known of his works, extended throughout most of his literary life.

It was finally finished when he was eighty-one. Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 21 a more healthy nature than the boyhood of Goethe; he was amazingly healthy.

Indeed, he was so healthy that his teachers found him difficult. Those who present no problem as children seldom enjoy good health in later life.

On the other hand, children who are a nuisance to their teachers tend to accomplish more in later life, because they have more active and energetic natures.

Understanding teachers, therefore, are happy when children keep a sharp eye on them. From his earliest childhood, Goethe was inclined in this way, even in the literal sense of the word.

But beyond this, even in childhood, he was bright and wide awake, and this occasionally gave his teachers trouble.

Later, in Leipzig, Goethe experienced a severe illness. He reacted strongly to all kinds of impressions, but he did not allow them to take hold or go deeply into his organism.

He did not suffer from heart trouble when deeply moved by some experience, but he experienced any such event intensely. His sensitivity of soul followed him throughout life; he suffered, but his suffering was not expressed as physical illness.

Thus his bodily health was exceptionally sound. He did not sink into vague mysticism or adopt the frequently held belief that there is no need to look after the outer physical form, but merely gaze at the spiritual.

He was alone in understanding that one can observe spirit through the image of the physical. Goethe was tall when he sat, and short when he stood.

When he stood you could see that he had short legs. This characteristic is especially important to those who can observe the human being as a whole.

Short legs lead to a certain way of walking. Goethe took short steps, because the upper part of his body was heavy and long, and he placed his foot firmly on the ground.

As teachers, we must observe these things so that we can study them in children. Why would a person have short legs and a large upper body?

This is an outward indication that, in the present earthly life, a person can harmoniously express what was experienced in a previous life on earth.

Goethe was extraordinarily harmonious in this way; even in very old age, he was able to describe what lay behind his karma. Indeed, he lived to such an advanced age because he was able to bring to fruition the potential gifts of his karma.

Even after Goethe left his physical body, it was still so beautiful that those who saw him after his death were filled with wonder. Our impression is that Goethe experienced his karmic potential to the fullest extent; now nothing is left, and he must begin afresh when he enters an earthly body again under completely different conditions.

Goethe, from the time of his youth, had the beautiful head of an Apollo, from which only harmonious forces flowed down into his physical body.

His body, however, was burdened by the weight of its upper part and his legs that were too short, and this led to his peculiar way of walking, which lasted throughout his life.

His whole being was a wonderful, harmonious expression of his karma and karmic fulfillment. Such a person, living harmoniously until a ripe old age, must experience outstanding events during middle age.

Goethe lived to be eighty-three. He thus reached middle age in , at around forty-one years of age. If we consider the years between and , we have the central decade of his life.

Indeed, during that period, Goethe experienced the most important events of his life. Before that time, he found it impossible to formulate his philosophical and scientific ideas in any definite way, important though they were.

The Metamorphosis of Plants was first published in ; everything related to it is connected with the decade between and During that decade, influenced by his friendship with Schiller, he had the bold idea of continuing Faust.

Thus, in Goethe we see an exceptionally harmonious life, a life that runs its quiet course, undisturbed by inner conflict and devoted freely and contemplatively to the outer world.

His head lacked the harmonious formation that we find in Goethe. In spite of this, his strong personality revealed itself in the way he held himself, and this was also expressed in his features, especially in the formation of his nose.

Schiller was not long in body, and he had long legs. He also suffered from cramps throughout his life.

At first, there were long periods between attacks, but later they became almost incessant. They became so severe, in fact, that he could not accept invitations to meals.

The cause of all this was an imperfect development of the circulatory and breathing systems. In , he established a close friendship with Goethe, who encouraged him to return to writing plays, which led to Wallenstein's Camp, Mary Stuart, The Maid of Orleans, William Tell, and others.

In , he moved to Weimar, where he and Goethe collaborated to make the Weimar Theater one of the finest in Germany. Schiller died of tuberculosis at the age of forty-six.

Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 25 So, what is the karmic reason from a previous earthly life that causes one to suffer from painful cramps?

We are faced with this man, and one of two things may arise. On the one hand, everything goes just as harmoniously as it did with Goethe, and we can say that we are dealing with karma; everything manifests through karma.

On the other hand, because of certain conditions that result while descending from the spirit world into the physical, one meets a condition in which the burden of karma cannot be worked through completely.

We descend from the spirit world with certain karmic predispositions, and we carry these in us. Imagine that A in this diagram represents a specific time in the life of a man.

At this point, he should be able to realize, or fulfill, his karma in some way, but for some reason this does not happen. Point B becomes another place when he should be able to fulfill his karma in some way, but again he must wait and postpone this aspect of his karma until the next incarnation.

This demonstrates the true nature of spiritual science. On the contrary, it penetrates real life and shows the true spiritual causes of various outer manifestations.

It knows how we represent ourselves in ordinary life. This is the knowledge that real spiritual science must be able to achieve.

Now the question arises: In a life such as that of Schiller, how does karma shape the whole life if, as it happened in his case, conditions prevent karma from functioning correctly, and thus he has to make continual efforts to accomplish what he wills to do?

For Goethe, it was relatively easy to complete his great works. For Schiller, the act of creation was always very difficult.

If we try to answer such a question superficially, nothing significant emerges, even with the help of spiritual scientific research.

We cannot spin a web of fantasy; we must observe. Nevertheless, if we approach the first object of observation in a direct way, we will become sidetracked.

Thus I considered the question as follows: How does a life proceed in the presence of karmic hindrances or other pre-earthly conditions?

I then began to study certain individuals in whom something like this had already occurred. I will give you an example.

I had an acquaintance, a person I knew very well in his present earthly life. In his case, there were not, as there were with Schiller, hindrances that prevent the fulfillment of karma.

But there were hindrances that blocked his incorporation of what he experienced between death and a new birth in the suprasensory world.

Observing this man, one could see that his experiences between death and a new birth had real significance, but they could not be expressed in earthly life.

So, what manifested physically because this man was unable to realize what had been presented to him in the suprasensory world?

He stuttered; he had a speech impediment. If we take another step and investigate the causes working in the soul that lead to speech disturbances, we always find that there is a blockage that prevents suprasensory experiences between death and rebirth from entering the physical world through the body.

Now the question arises: What is the situation for one who carries very much within him that was brought about through previous karma?

It was all stored up in the existence between death and a new birth, and, because he cannot bring it into life, he becomes a stutterer.

What sort of things are connected with such a person in earthly life? He was able to incarnate what he could develop in forming the physical body until the change of teeth; he even had a strong ability to develop what takes place between the change of teeth and puberty.

He also developed an outstanding literary and artistic capacity, because he had been able to form all that can be developed between puberty and the thirtieth year.

Now, however, for one who has true knowledge of the human being a deep concern arises, a concern that could be expressed this way: What will be the situation for this person when he enters his thirties, when he should increasingly develop a spiritual, or consciousness, soul, in addition to the intellectual, or mind, soul?

Those who have knowledge of such matters will feel the deepest concern in such cases, because they can see that the consciousness soul which develops through all that arises in the head, perfect and complete will be unable to develop fully.

For this person, the fact that he stuttered showed that something in the area of the head was not in proper order. Again, this indicated that he had been unable to incarnate in this life all that he had absorbed in the suprasensory life between death and rebirth.

At the time, I did not see the Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 29 whole situation as clearly as I do today; what I am describing happened more than twenty years ago.

But I was very concerned about this operation. In the end, he did not follow my advice; the operation went ahead, and this is what happened.

But I was troubled. A few days later, the man died, having just completed his thirtieth year. The doctors diagnosed typhoid, but it was not typhoid; he died of meningitis.

Spiritual researchers do not need to be heartless when considering such a life. On the contrary, sympathy is deepened.

One can nevertheless see through life and comprehend its manifold aspects and relationships. We perceive that spiritual experiences between death and rebirth cannot be brought into the present life and that this is expressed as physical defects.

Please do not think I am implying that everyone who squints will die at thirty. Negative implications are never intended, and it certainly could happen that other karmic influences will enter life and allow such a person to live to a ripe old age.

In this case, however, there was good reason to be anxious, because the demands placed on the system in the head resulted in squinting and stuttering.

One had to ask: How can a person with an organization like this live beyond thirty-five? If we consider every aspect of karma in the case I described, we find that certain individuals might very likely live beyond thirty-five.

Besides all the other conditions, however, such people would have to possess an impulse that leads to a spiritual view of humankind and the world.

This man had a natural disposition for spiritual matters that is rarely encountered; but despite this fact, powerful inherent spiritual impulses from previous earthly lives were too unbalanced, and he was unable to approach the spiritual.

I assure you that I can speak of such a matter. I was a close friend of that man and therefore well aware of the deep cleft between my own worldview and his.

Intellectually, we could understand each other very well; we could be on excellent terms in other ways, but it was impossible to speak to him of spiritual matters.

Consequently, at thirty-five he would have had to find his way into a spiritual life; otherwise his latent gifts could not be realized on earth.

He died when he did because he was unable to accept a spiritual life. It is, of course, quite possible to stutter or have a squint and nevertheless continue life as an ordinary mortal.

There is no cause for fear as a result of what we must say to describe realities instead of wasting our breath in mere phrases. Moreover, this example shows how observation, sharpened by spiritual insight, enables us to look deeply into human life.

Now let us return to Schiller. When we consider his life, two things strike us most of all, because they are so remarkable.

There is an unfinished drama by Schiller, only a sketch. It could not have been finished otherwise. To a certain degree, at least, he had the inner qualities needed for initiation, but because of other karmic conditions, these qualities could not get through; they were suppressed, or cramped.

There was a cramping of his soul life, too, and this can be seen in his sketch of the Die Malteser. There are long powerful sentences that never come to a full stop.

Whatever is in him cannot find a way out. It is interesting to observe that, for Goethe, too, we have unfinished sketches such as this, but, in his case, when he left something unfinished, he did so because he was too easy-going to carry it any further; he could have finished it.

This would have proved impossible for him only at a very advanced age, after sclerosis had set in. For Schiller, however, we see another picture.

He had an iron will when he tried to develop the Die Malteser, but he could not do it. He could write only a slight sketch, because his drama, in reality, contains something that, since the time of the Crusades, has been preserved in the various kinds of occultism, mysticism, and initiation science.

Schiller went to work on this kind of drama, but to complete it he would have had to experience initiation.

He was feared. People feared that he might betray all kinds of occult secrets in his drama. I also want to say something about another work.

Schiller was unable to finish Die Malteser; he could not get through it. But he had to set it aside. After some time, he received a new impulse that inspired his later work.

He could no longer think about Die Malteser, but began to compose Demetrius. It portrays a remarkable problem of destiny, the story of the false Demetrius who takes the place of another man.

As he went to work on it with feverish activity, people became aware of it and were even more afraid that certain things would be exposed, and they had an interest in keeping such matters hidden from the rest of humankind for some time yet.

Schiller became ill while writing Demetrius. In a raging fever on his sick bed, he continually repeated almost all of Demetrius.

It seemed as though an alien power was at work in him, expressing itself through his body. He did not dare to make his inner thoughts known.

This is why Schiller had to die in his midforties. His condition of cramps and his build as a whole, especially the ugly formation of his head, made it impossible for him to incarnate physically the essence of his soul and spirit, which was deeply rooted in spiritual existence.

Bearing such things in mind, we must acknowledge that the study of human life is deepened through the use of what spiritual science provides.

We learn to see right into human life. In presenting these examples to you, my sole purpose was to show how one learns through anthroposophy to contemplate the life of human beings.

Will we learn to contemplate every human life, every human being, with much more inner attention? Everything depends on the development of such feelings.

People can be very bright and know everything; but these are not anthroposophists in the true sense of the word, just because they know these things in an ordinary way, as one might learn the contents of a cookbook.

The important thing is for the life of human souls to be enlivened and deepened by the spiritual scientific worldview, and that we learn to work and act from a soul life that has been deepened and made alive.

Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 35 This is the first task in fostering education that is based on anthroposophy.

From the very beginning, one should work in such a way that teachers and educators know the human being in the deepest sense, so that out of the conviction that arises from observing human beings correctly, they approach children with love that is born from such thinking.

And so it follows that, when teachers train to work in an anthroposophic way, we do not begin by saying you should do it like this or like that, or you should use this or that educational trick.

First we awaken a true educational sense, born from our knowledge of the human being. If we have been successful in awakening this real love of education in teachers, then we can say that they are ready to begin their work as educators.

In education based on knowledge of the human being, as is Waldorf education for example, the first thing to consider is not conveying rules or advice about how one is supposed to teach; the first thing is to hold training courses for teachers in such a way that we find the hearts of the teachers and deepen those hearts so that love for the children grows from them.

There may be good intentions behind it, but it will achieve nothing. The only human love that can do anything arises from a deepened observation of individual cases.

An intimate study of the human being reveals that, up to the change of teeth, children are completely different from what they become later on.

A tremendous inner transformation takes place at this time, and another tremendous transformation occurs at puberty.

Just consider what this change of teeth means for growing children. It is only the outer indication of deep changes that take place in the whole human being, changes that occur only once; we get our second teeth only once, not every seven years.

With the change of teeth, the formative process in the teeth ends. After this, we retain our teeth throughout life.

The most we can do is have them filled or replace them with false ones, because our organism will not produce more.

The reason for this is that, with the change of teeth, the organization of the head is brought to a certain conclusion.

If we are aware of this in each case and ask ourselves what is really being concluded with the change of teeth, we are led at this point to comprehend the whole human organization of body, soul, and spirit.

These are the three most outstanding faculties that are developed up to the change of teeth. Walking involves more than just learning to walk.

Walking is only one manifestation of what actually takes place; it means learning to adapt to the world by gaining a sense of balance.

Walking is only the most obvious expression of this process. Before learning to walk, children do not need equilibrium in the world, but now they Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 37 learn this.

How does it come about? It happens because we are born with a head that requires a certain position in relation to the forces of balance.

We can see the secret of the human head very clearly in the physical body. Bear in mind that the average human brain weighs between one and one and a half kilograms.

If this much weight were to press down on the delicate veins at the base of the brain, it would quickly crush them.

This is prevented because the weight of the brain floats in the cerebral fluid that fills the head. No doubt you recall from your studies in physics that a body floating in a fluid loses weight in proportion to the fluid that it displaces.

Apply this to the brain and you discover that our brain presses on its base with a weight of around twenty grams; the remaining weight is lost in the cerebral fluid.

Thus, at birth the brain is positioned so that its weight will be in correct proportion to the displaced cerebral fluid.

This is adjusted when we lift ourselves from crawling to an upright posture. The position of the head must now be brought into relationship to the rest of the organism.

Walking and using our hands require the head to assume a certain position. Our sense of balance proceeds from the head.

At birth, our head is relatively highly organized; until then, it is formed in the embryo, though it will not become fully developed until the change of teeth.

It is the rhythmic system that is first established during the time before the change of teeth, when it receives its special outer organization.

If you simply observe physiological processes more carefully, you can see the importance of establishing the circulatory and breathing systems during the first seven years.

Above all, you recognize how much damage can be done if the physical life of a child does not develop properly. Children sense unconsciously how their life forces work in their circulation and breathing.

A physical organ such as the brain must establish a state of balance; likewise, the soul in the first years of life plays a role in the development of the rhythmic systems.

The physical body must actively bring about a state of balance proceeding from the head. The soul, to the degree that it is organized correctly for this purpose, must be active in the changes in the circulation and breathing.

Our upright bearing and the use of our hands and arms are related to what is expressed in the brain; similarly, speech develops in us in a way that is related to the systems of circulation and breathing.

By learning to speak, we establish a relationship with our circulation and breathing. In the same way, we establish a relationship between walking and dexterity and the forces of the head by learning to hold the head so that the brain loses the correct amount of weight.

If you learn to perceive these relationships and then meet someone with a clear, high voice, particularly well-suited to reciting hymns or odes, or even to moral harangues, you can be certain that this is related to certain conditions of the circulatory system.

Or if you meet someone with a rough, harsh voice, like beating sheets of brass and tin, you may be sure that this, too, is connected with the breathing or circulatory systems.

But there is more to it than this. Beginning with this, we can look up and see into the prenatal human life that is subject to the conditions we claimed between death and a new birth.

Then we know how to help a child whose strident voice betrays the fact that there is same kind of karmic obstruction, and we can do something to free that child from those karmic hindrances.

Then, as teachers, you can work in such a way that you consider both spirit and body and, thus, can help the physical provide the right foundation for spirit.

This is extremely important, and we must investigate and understand it. In this way, knowledge of the human being must make itself felt in education, and this knowledge must be deepened in soul and spirit.

With this lecture I wanted to invoke a picture that gives an idea of what we are trying to achieve in education.

It can arise in the way of practical educational results, though many people consider it to be very impractical and fantastic daydreaming.

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Then he acts on his theories and abstract thoughts, but here they must deal with reality. Certain things are The Need for Understanding the Human Being 3 done; invented ideas are put into practice, but the thinking does not fit real life.

In fact, something is carried over into real life that does not correspond to reality. A business conducted in this way may continue for awhile, and those who start such businesses may consider themselves to be very practical.

Today we can hear truly practical people speak of such theorists, who enter the business life and introduce their theories with a heavy hand.

If enough capital is available, they may be able to continue for awhile, but with time the business fails or may be absorbed into another, more established business.

Usually when this happens, very little attention is given to how much genuine, vital effort was wasted, how many lives ruined, and how many people were injured or hindered in life.

In such cases, however, their practicality has not come through understanding but through the intellect. They introduced something into reality without considering the actual situation.

When a decision is made to build a bridge, it is essential to use the knowledge of mechanics to ensure that the bridge will hold up to what is required of it; otherwise, the first train to cross it will plunge into the water.

Such things have happened, and even today we see the results of defective mechanical construction. If we consider the practice of medicine, we see immediately that it is not so obvious whether or not the conditions of reality have been properly considered.

Here, too, the procedure is the same; something is theorized and then applied as a method of healing. Likewise, in the realm of education, it is not always possible to see whether growing children are being educated according to their needs or according to the fanciful methods of experimental psychology.

Educational goals are frequently formed in this way. But how are they carried into life? They sit firmly in the head; that is where they are.

Teachers know in their heads that a child must be taught arithmetic one way, geography another, and so on, and then the intentions are to be put into practice.

Teachers must consider all that they have learned and recall that, according to the precepts of scientific educational methods, they must proceed in a particular way.

Then, when faced with putting their knowledge into practice, they recall various theoretical principles and apply them in an external way.

What happened to such teachers is the same thing we are forced to observe with sad hearts, daily and hourly: the fact that people pass one another by in life; that people have no sense for really getting to know one another.

It is the failure to acknowledge others and the lack of interest that people should show toward one another. In everyday life, we must accept this state of affairs; it is the destiny of modern humanity at the present time.

But such aloofness reaches its apex when the teachers of children and young people stand separate and apart from their students, while employing conventional scientific methods in a completely external way.

When a bridge collapses, we can see that the laws of mechanics have been applied incorrectly, but wrong educational methods are not so obvious.

People today are comfortable only when it comes to mechanical thinking, which can always determine whether things have been thought out rightly or wrongly, and which has led to the most brilliant achievements in modern civilization.

This is clear from the fact that humanity today has confidence only in mechanical thinking. We experiment with children because we are no longer able to approach their hearts and souls.

It is, of course, always easier to criticize than to build constructively. As a matter of fact, however, what I have said does not come from such an inclination or desire; it comes from observing life in a direct way.

What kind of person does it take to pursue a calling based, for example, on knowledge of the human being? One must be objective. This can be heard everywhere today, in every hole and corner.

Of course, we must be objective, but the question has to do with whether or not such objectivity is based on a lack of attention to what is essential in any given situation.

In general, people have the idea that love is the most subjective thing there is in life, and that it would be impossible for anyone to love and be objective at the same time.

Consequently, when people speak of knowledge today, love is never mentioned in a serious way. True, when young people apply themselves to acquiring knowledge, it is considered appropriate to encourage them to do so with love, but this is usually done while the whole presentation of knowledge is very unlikely to develop love in anyone.

Nevertheless, for real life, love is the greatest power of knowledge. And without this love, it is impossible to acquire knowledge of the human being, which forms the basis of any true art of education.

Let us try to picture this love, and see how it can work in the special sphere of an education based on knowledge The Need for Understanding the Human Being 7 of the human being, as drawn from spiritual science, or anthroposophy.

Children are entrusted to us for their education. If our thinking in regard to education is based on spiritual science, we do not view a child as something to be developed toward some human ideal of society, or some such thing; a human ideal can be completely abstract.

Such a human ideal has already assumed as many forms as there are political parties, societies, and other interests.

This is carried to extremes in Russia today. In general, however, this is more or less the way people think today, though perhaps somewhat less radically.

This is not the place to start for teachers who want to educate on the basis of spiritual science. They do not idolize their own opinions.

An abstract image of the human being, toward which children are to be led, is an idol; it has no reality. Such teachers would at least touch some sort of reality, but the absurdity of saying such a thing would be obvious.

When we deal with young children, we are faced with beings who have not yet begun physical existence; they have brought down spirit and soul from pre-earthly worlds and plunged into the physical bodies provided by parents and ancestors.

We see a baby before us in the first days of life, having undeveloped features and unorganized, random movements. Then, filled with reverent awe, we ask: What is it that is struggling to the surface?

Thus, with heart and mind, we are led back to the human being, when soul and spirit lived in the spiritual, pre-earthly world, from which this child descended into the physical world.

And we might say: Little child, now that you have entered into earthly existence through birth, you are among human beings; previously, however, you were among spiritual, divine beings.

What once lived among spiritual divine beings descended to live among human beings. We see the divine manifested in the child.

We have a sense of standing before an altar. But there is one difference; in religious communities, it is normal for people to bring sacrificial offerings to their altars, so that those sacrifices can ascend into the spiritual world.

Now, however, we have a sense of standing before an altar turned the other way; the gods allow their grace to flow down in the form of divine spiritual beings, so that those beings, acting as messengers of the gods, may reveal what is essentially human on the altar of physical life.

We see in every child the revelation of divine spiritual, cosmic laws; we see the way God creates in the world. In its highest, most significant form this is revealed in the child.

Hence, every single child becomes a sacred mystery to us, because every child embodies this great question.

It is not a question of how to educate children to approach some ideal that has been dreamed up; it is a question of how to nurture what the gods have sent to us in the earthly world.

We come to see The Need for Understanding the Human Being 9 ourselves as helpers of the divine spiritual world, and above all we learn to ask what will happen if we approach education with this attitude of mind.

True education proceeds from exactly this attitude. The important thing is to develop our teaching on the basis of this kind of thinking.

Again, it may seem as though something obvious is being said here, though in a slightly different way, but this is not the case.

A mental attitude such as I described cannot work in an abstract way; it must work spiritually, while always keeping the practical in view.

Such an attitude, however, can never be acquired by accepting theories that are unrelated and alien to life; it can be gained only when you have a sense for every expression of life and are able to go with love into all its manifestations.

There is a lot of discussion today about reforming education. Ever since the war, there has been talk of a revolution in education, and we have experienced this.

Every conceivable approach has been tried, and almost everyone is concerned one way or another about how to carry out these reforms.

And so it goes. There is much talk about methods of education, but do you see the kind of impression all this makes when, in an unbiased way, you look at what the various reform groups, down to the most radical, present as their educational programs?

One certainly gets the impression that people are very smart today. Indeed, all these solutions are tremendously clever. And I do not say this with irony, but quite seriously.

There has never been a time when there was as much ingenuity as there is in our time. Paragraph And so on. Today, people of any profession, occupation, or social class can sit down together and work out these programs; everything we get, in paragraphs one through thirty, will be delightfully ingenious, because we really know exactly how to form theories.

People have never been so good at formulating things as they are today. Then a program, or several programs, can be submitted to a committee or legislature.

This again is very resourceful. Something may be changed, deleted, or added according to party opinion, and something very ingenious emerges, even if it is sometimes strongly partisan.

Nothing can be done with it, however, but this is really beside the point. Waldorf education never began with such a program.

The fact that we have to deal with reality might prove a hindrance, and so the result would be more stupid.

With us, however, it has never been a matter of a program. What is this reality? First, there were children, individual children with various characteristics.

First and foremost, then, there were the children. Then there were the teachers. You can adopt, as much as you like, the principle that children should be educated according to individuality this is part of every reform program , but absolutely nothing will come of it.

On the other hand, aside from the children, there are the teachers, and it is important to know what the teachers can accomplish with children.

The school must be run in such a way that we do not establish some abstract ideal; rather, we allow the school to develop out of the teachers and students.

Those teachers and students are not present in any sort of abstract way; they are very real, individual human beings. That is the gist of the matter.

Then, by virtue of necessity, we are led to build up a true education based on a real knowledge of the human being.

We cease to be theoretical and become practical in every detail. Waldorf education, the first teaching method based on anthroposophy, is in reality the practice of education as an art; thus it is possible to give only indications of what can be done in various situations.

Today, however, unrefined observation completely ignores the most important characteristics in the progressive stages of life.

I would say that we must draw some inspiration from spiritual science if we wish to develop the right sense for what we should bring to children.

People today know very little about the human being and about humankind in general. People imagine that our present state of existence is the same as it was in the fourteenth or sixteenth century and, indeed, that it has never been any different.

They picture the ancient Greeks or Egyptians as being pretty much the same as we are today. There is no interest, however, in penetrating the great differences between the historic and prehistoric epochs of humankind.

Let us study human beings as they appear to us today, beginning in infancy up to the change of teeth.

We see very clearly that physical development runs parallel to the development of soul and spirit. Everything that manifests as soul and spirit has an exact counterpart in the physical; both appear together, both develop out of the child together.

When children have gone through the change of teeth, we see how the soul is already freeing itself from the body.

On the one hand, we can follow the development of soul and spirit in children and, on the other, their physical development. These two sides, however, have not yet clearly separated.

If we continue to The Need for Understanding the Human Being 13 follow the development until the time between puberty and about the twenty-first year, the separation becomes much more defined, and then when we reach the twentyseventh or twenty-eighth year speaking now of modern humanity , we no longer see how the soul and spirit is connected with the physical body.

What a person does at this age can be perceived, on the one hand, in the life of soul and spirit and, on the other hand, in the physical life; but the two cannot be connected.

Nevertheless, this is not the way it has always been; it is merely a belief to think that it was.

Spiritual science, studied anthroposophically, clearly shows us a fact that has simply not been noticed. What we see in children at the present stage of human evolution persisted, at one time, right into extreme old age; in their being of soul and spirit, children are completely dependent on the physical body, and their physical nature depends completely on their being of soul and spirit.

The answer must be something like this: Such a man, in growing old, changed in terms of his physical nature, but, even at an extremely old age, he continued to feel as only very young people feel today.

Even in old age he sensed that his being of soul and spirit was dependent on his physical body. Today we no longer have the sense that our physical body depends on the way we think and feel.

But in ancient times, a dependence of this kind was experienced. They felt their life forces waning, but along with this physical decline they also experienced an increase of spiritual forces, brought about by the breaking up of the physical.

The soul was being freed of the physical body; this is how they experienced the beginning of this process of physical decline.

Having reached the age of a patriarch, the body was breaking up, and the soul was most able to free itself from the body, so that it was no longer within it.

This is why people looked up to the patriarchs with such devotion and reverence. They knew how it would be for them one day in old age.

In old age, one could know and understand things, penetrating to the heart of matters in a way that was not yet possible while one was still building up the physical body.

During those ancient times, one would be able to look into a world order that was both physical and spiritual. But this was in a very remote past.

Then came a time when people felt this interdependence of the physical and spiritual until only around the fiftieth year. This was followed by the Greek age.

The special value of the Greek epoch rests on the fact that they were able to feel the harmony between the spirit and the physical body.

The Greeks felt this harmony until their thirties or forties. In the circulation of the blood, they still experienced what united the soul with the physical.

The wonderful culture and art of the Greeks was based on this unity; it transformed everything theoretical into art and, at the same time, filled their art with wisdom.

In those times, sculptors worked in such a way that they had no need for models, because, in their own organization, they were aware of the forces that permeate the The Need for Understanding the Human Being 15 arms or legs, giving them form.

This was learned, for example, in the festival games. Today, however, even when such games are imitated, they have no meaning.

If, however, we have a sense for the development of humankind, we know what has really taken place in human evolution.

To be precise, we also know that today a parallel exists between the physical body and the spirit only until the age of twenty-seven or twenty-eight.

Most people observe this parallel only until the age of puberty. Thus, we know how divine spirit springs up and grows from the developing human being.

Our thoughts are thus directed to knowledge of the human being, based on the individuality in the soul. If we absorb these universal historical aspects, we will also be able to approach every educational task in an appropriate way.

The teacher is thus surrounded by an atmosphere of reality, a real concept of the world, not one merely thought out and intellectual.

The teacher will then be surrounded by a world imbued with feeling. Now if we consider what has just been presented, we realize a remarkable fact.

We see that we are establishing an education that, by degrees, will represent in many ways the very opposite of the characteristic impulse in education today.

All sorts of comedians who have some knack for caricature frequently choose the school teacher as an object for the purpose of derision.

Even when teachers are versed in modern educational methods and take them into school with them, if they lack the means to understand the children they must deal with, how can they be anything but strangers to the world?

With the school systems we have today, one cannot be anything else; teachers are torn out of the world.

We are faced, therefore, with a truly remarkable situation. Teachers are alienated from the world, but they are nevertheless expected to train human beings to go out and prosper in the world.

Let us imagine, however, that the things we have been speaking of today become an accepted viewpoint. The relationship between teachers and children is such that, in each individual child, a whole world is revealed, and not just a human world, but also a divine spiritual world manifested on earth.

In other words, the teacher perceives as many aspects of the world as there are children in the class.

Through each child, the teacher looks into the wide world. Thus, education becomes art. It is imbued with an awareness that whatever one does directly affects world evolution.

Teaching in this sense leads teachers, in the task of educating and developing human beings, to a lofty worldview. Such teachers are those who gain the ability to play a leading role in the great questions that face civilization.

The student will never outgrow such a teacher, as they so often do today. Consider this scenario in a school.

Imagine that a teacher has to educate according to some idea or preconceived image of the human being. Among them are two who, through an innate capacity and guided by destiny, happen to be far more gifted than the teacher herself.

She would want to shape them according with her educational ideal; anything else would be impossible. And how does this turn out?

Reality does not permit it, and the students outgrow their teacher. If, on the other hand, we educate according to reality, we nurture all that manifests in children as qualities of soul and spirit.

Thus, we are like gardeners with our plants. Do you think that gardeners know all the secrets of the plants they tend? Plants contain many, many more secrets than gardeners understand, but they can tend them, nevertheless, and perhaps succeed best in caring for those that they do not yet know.

Such teachers know that they have no need to lead students toward some abstract ideal; rather, in the children, the divine is working in the human being, right through the physical body.

They do this through an outpouring love that permeates their work as educators. It is this mental attitude that is so essential.

It will deal with the educational value of understanding the human being and the cultural value of education.

I showed how, because spiritual science has an overall knowledge of the whole of human life from birth to death to the degree that this takes place on earth , it can correctly show us the essentials of childhood education.

It is easy to think that we can know how to educate children by simply observing the events of childhood and youth; but this is not enough.

On the contrary, it is like working with a plant; if you introduce a substance to the growing shoot, its effect shows up in the blossom or fruit.

People today usually study the children though perhaps less externally than I described yesterday to discover the best ways to help them.

This is not enough. Today I would like to lay some foundations on which I will show how we can observe the whole human life by means of spiritual science.

Yesterday, I said that human beings should be seen as made up of body, soul, and spirit. It is essential, therefore, to understand human life in such a way that we see events on earth as an outcome of life before birth.

All this is alive and active in us, and during earthly life we must prepare everything that will eventually pass through the gate of death and live again in the world of soul and spirit, beyond earthly life.

Consequently, we must come to understand how the suprasensory works into earthly life, because it is present between birth and death.

It acts in a hidden way within our bodily nature, and we cannot understand the body if we fail to understand the spiritual forces acting within it.

Let us now look at what I have just suggested. We can do this by considering actual examples. I would like to give you the examples of two people who are certainly familiar to you.

I chose them because I studied them both very intensely for many years. These are two men of genius; later, we will consider less gifted individuals.

We will see then that anthroposophy does not speak only in general, abstract ways, but penetrates real human beings with such understanding that knowledge of the human being is shown to have practical reality for life.

By choosing Goethe and Schiller as my examples, and by approaching them indirectly, I hope to show how knowledge of the human being is acquired through spiritual science.

Let us consider Goethe and Schiller, just as they appeared outwardly during their lives. In each case, we will look at the whole personality.

Goethe was an individual who entered life in a remarkable way. This shows how very difficult it was for his spirit to enter physical incarnation.

But once this occurred and Goethe had overcome the resistance of this physical body, he was completely in it.

At about sixteen, he began to study law. He also studied art, music, anatomy, and chemistry. It represented his youthful protest against the establishment and a demand for intellectual freedom.

The writing of Goethe's Faust, the best known of his works, extended throughout most of his literary life.

It was finally finished when he was eighty-one. Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 21 a more healthy nature than the boyhood of Goethe; he was amazingly healthy.

Indeed, he was so healthy that his teachers found him difficult. Those who present no problem as children seldom enjoy good health in later life.

On the other hand, children who are a nuisance to their teachers tend to accomplish more in later life, because they have more active and energetic natures.

Understanding teachers, therefore, are happy when children keep a sharp eye on them. From his earliest childhood, Goethe was inclined in this way, even in the literal sense of the word.

But beyond this, even in childhood, he was bright and wide awake, and this occasionally gave his teachers trouble.

Later, in Leipzig, Goethe experienced a severe illness. He reacted strongly to all kinds of impressions, but he did not allow them to take hold or go deeply into his organism.

He did not suffer from heart trouble when deeply moved by some experience, but he experienced any such event intensely.

His sensitivity of soul followed him throughout life; he suffered, but his suffering was not expressed as physical illness. Thus his bodily health was exceptionally sound.

He did not sink into vague mysticism or adopt the frequently held belief that there is no need to look after the outer physical form, but merely gaze at the spiritual.

He was alone in understanding that one can observe spirit through the image of the physical. Goethe was tall when he sat, and short when he stood.

When he stood you could see that he had short legs. This characteristic is especially important to those who can observe the human being as a whole.

Short legs lead to a certain way of walking. Goethe took short steps, because the upper part of his body was heavy and long, and he placed his foot firmly on the ground.

As teachers, we must observe these things so that we can study them in children. Why would a person have short legs and a large upper body?

This is an outward indication that, in the present earthly life, a person can harmoniously express what was experienced in a previous life on earth.

Goethe was extraordinarily harmonious in this way; even in very old age, he was able to describe what lay behind his karma. Indeed, he lived to such an advanced age because he was able to bring to fruition the potential gifts of his karma.

Even after Goethe left his physical body, it was still so beautiful that those who saw him after his death were filled with wonder.

Our impression is that Goethe experienced his karmic potential to the fullest extent; now nothing is left, and he must begin afresh when he enters an earthly body again under completely different conditions.

Goethe, from the time of his youth, had the beautiful head of an Apollo, from which only harmonious forces flowed down into his physical body.

His body, however, was burdened by the weight of its upper part and his legs that were too short, and this led to his peculiar way of walking, which lasted throughout his life.

His whole being was a wonderful, harmonious expression of his karma and karmic fulfillment. Such a person, living harmoniously until a ripe old age, must experience outstanding events during middle age.

Goethe lived to be eighty-three. He thus reached middle age in , at around forty-one years of age. If we consider the years between and , we have the central decade of his life.

Indeed, during that period, Goethe experienced the most important events of his life. Before that time, he found it impossible to formulate his philosophical and scientific ideas in any definite way, important though they were.

The Metamorphosis of Plants was first published in ; everything related to it is connected with the decade between and During that decade, influenced by his friendship with Schiller, he had the bold idea of continuing Faust.

Thus, in Goethe we see an exceptionally harmonious life, a life that runs its quiet course, undisturbed by inner conflict and devoted freely and contemplatively to the outer world.

His head lacked the harmonious formation that we find in Goethe. In spite of this, his strong personality revealed itself in the way he held himself, and this was also expressed in his features, especially in the formation of his nose.

Schiller was not long in body, and he had long legs. He also suffered from cramps throughout his life. At first, there were long periods between attacks, but later they became almost incessant.

They became so severe, in fact, that he could not accept invitations to meals. The cause of all this was an imperfect development of the circulatory and breathing systems.

In , he established a close friendship with Goethe, who encouraged him to return to writing plays, which led to Wallenstein's Camp, Mary Stuart, The Maid of Orleans, William Tell, and others.

In , he moved to Weimar, where he and Goethe collaborated to make the Weimar Theater one of the finest in Germany.

Schiller died of tuberculosis at the age of forty-six. Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 25 So, what is the karmic reason from a previous earthly life that causes one to suffer from painful cramps?

We are faced with this man, and one of two things may arise. On the one hand, everything goes just as harmoniously as it did with Goethe, and we can say that we are dealing with karma; everything manifests through karma.

On the other hand, because of certain conditions that result while descending from the spirit world into the physical, one meets a condition in which the burden of karma cannot be worked through completely.

We descend from the spirit world with certain karmic predispositions, and we carry these in us. Imagine that A in this diagram represents a specific time in the life of a man.

At this point, he should be able to realize, or fulfill, his karma in some way, but for some reason this does not happen.

Point B becomes another place when he should be able to fulfill his karma in some way, but again he must wait and postpone this aspect of his karma until the next incarnation.

This demonstrates the true nature of spiritual science. On the contrary, it penetrates real life and shows the true spiritual causes of various outer manifestations.

It knows how we represent ourselves in ordinary life. This is the knowledge that real spiritual science must be able to achieve.

Now the question arises: In a life such as that of Schiller, how does karma shape the whole life if, as it happened in his case, conditions prevent karma from functioning correctly, and thus he has to make continual efforts to accomplish what he wills to do?

For Goethe, it was relatively easy to complete his great works. For Schiller, the act of creation was always very difficult. If we try to answer such a question superficially, nothing significant emerges, even with the help of spiritual scientific research.

We cannot spin a web of fantasy; we must observe. Nevertheless, if we approach the first object of observation in a direct way, we will become sidetracked.

Thus I considered the question as follows: How does a life proceed in the presence of karmic hindrances or other pre-earthly conditions?

I then began to study certain individuals in whom something like this had already occurred. I will give you an example.

I had an acquaintance, a person I knew very well in his present earthly life. In his case, there were not, as there were with Schiller, hindrances that prevent the fulfillment of karma.

But there were hindrances that blocked his incorporation of what he experienced between death and a new birth in the suprasensory world.

Observing this man, one could see that his experiences between death and a new birth had real significance, but they could not be expressed in earthly life.

So, what manifested physically because this man was unable to realize what had been presented to him in the suprasensory world?

He stuttered; he had a speech impediment. If we take another step and investigate the causes working in the soul that lead to speech disturbances, we always find that there is a blockage that prevents suprasensory experiences between death and rebirth from entering the physical world through the body.

Now the question arises: What is the situation for one who carries very much within him that was brought about through previous karma? It was all stored up in the existence between death and a new birth, and, because he cannot bring it into life, he becomes a stutterer.

What sort of things are connected with such a person in earthly life? He was able to incarnate what he could develop in forming the physical body until the change of teeth; he even had a strong ability to develop what takes place between the change of teeth and puberty.

He also developed an outstanding literary and artistic capacity, because he had been able to form all that can be developed between puberty and the thirtieth year.

Now, however, for one who has true knowledge of the human being a deep concern arises, a concern that could be expressed this way: What will be the situation for this person when he enters his thirties, when he should increasingly develop a spiritual, or consciousness, soul, in addition to the intellectual, or mind, soul?

Those who have knowledge of such matters will feel the deepest concern in such cases, because they can see that the consciousness soul which develops through all that arises in the head, perfect and complete will be unable to develop fully.

For this person, the fact that he stuttered showed that something in the area of the head was not in proper order.

Again, this indicated that he had been unable to incarnate in this life all that he had absorbed in the suprasensory life between death and rebirth.

At the time, I did not see the Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 29 whole situation as clearly as I do today; what I am describing happened more than twenty years ago.

But I was very concerned about this operation. In the end, he did not follow my advice; the operation went ahead, and this is what happened.

But I was troubled. A few days later, the man died, having just completed his thirtieth year. The doctors diagnosed typhoid, but it was not typhoid; he died of meningitis.

Spiritual researchers do not need to be heartless when considering such a life. On the contrary, sympathy is deepened.

One can nevertheless see through life and comprehend its manifold aspects and relationships. We perceive that spiritual experiences between death and rebirth cannot be brought into the present life and that this is expressed as physical defects.

Please do not think I am implying that everyone who squints will die at thirty. Negative implications are never intended, and it certainly could happen that other karmic influences will enter life and allow such a person to live to a ripe old age.

In this case, however, there was good reason to be anxious, because the demands placed on the system in the head resulted in squinting and stuttering.

One had to ask: How can a person with an organization like this live beyond thirty-five? If we consider every aspect of karma in the case I described, we find that certain individuals might very likely live beyond thirty-five.

Besides all the other conditions, however, such people would have to possess an impulse that leads to a spiritual view of humankind and the world.

This man had a natural disposition for spiritual matters that is rarely encountered; but despite this fact, powerful inherent spiritual impulses from previous earthly lives were too unbalanced, and he was unable to approach the spiritual.

I assure you that I can speak of such a matter. I was a close friend of that man and therefore well aware of the deep cleft between my own worldview and his.

Intellectually, we could understand each other very well; we could be on excellent terms in other ways, but it was impossible to speak to him of spiritual matters.

Consequently, at thirty-five he would have had to find his way into a spiritual life; otherwise his latent gifts could not be realized on earth.

He died when he did because he was unable to accept a spiritual life. It is, of course, quite possible to stutter or have a squint and nevertheless continue life as an ordinary mortal.

There is no cause for fear as a result of what we must say to describe realities instead of wasting our breath in mere phrases.

Moreover, this example shows how observation, sharpened by spiritual insight, enables us to look deeply into human life.

Now let us return to Schiller. When we consider his life, two things strike us most of all, because they are so remarkable. There is an unfinished drama by Schiller, only a sketch.

It could not have been finished otherwise. To a certain degree, at least, he had the inner qualities needed for initiation, but because of other karmic conditions, these qualities could not get through; they were suppressed, or cramped.

There was a cramping of his soul life, too, and this can be seen in his sketch of the Die Malteser. There are long powerful sentences that never come to a full stop.

Whatever is in him cannot find a way out. It is interesting to observe that, for Goethe, too, we have unfinished sketches such as this, but, in his case, when he left something unfinished, he did so because he was too easy-going to carry it any further; he could have finished it.

This would have proved impossible for him only at a very advanced age, after sclerosis had set in. For Schiller, however, we see another picture.

He had an iron will when he tried to develop the Die Malteser, but he could not do it. He could write only a slight sketch, because his drama, in reality, contains something that, since the time of the Crusades, has been preserved in the various kinds of occultism, mysticism, and initiation science.

Schiller went to work on this kind of drama, but to complete it he would have had to experience initiation. He was feared.

People feared that he might betray all kinds of occult secrets in his drama. I also want to say something about another work.

Schiller was unable to finish Die Malteser; he could not get through it. But he had to set it aside. After some time, he received a new impulse that inspired his later work.

He could no longer think about Die Malteser, but began to compose Demetrius. It portrays a remarkable problem of destiny, the story of the false Demetrius who takes the place of another man.

As he went to work on it with feverish activity, people became aware of it and were even more afraid that certain things would be exposed, and they had an interest in keeping such matters hidden from the rest of humankind for some time yet.

Schiller became ill while writing Demetrius. In a raging fever on his sick bed, he continually repeated almost all of Demetrius.

It seemed as though an alien power was at work in him, expressing itself through his body. He did not dare to make his inner thoughts known.

This is why Schiller had to die in his midforties. His condition of cramps and his build as a whole, especially the ugly formation of his head, made it impossible for him to incarnate physically the essence of his soul and spirit, which was deeply rooted in spiritual existence.

Bearing such things in mind, we must acknowledge that the study of human life is deepened through the use of what spiritual science provides.

We learn to see right into human life. In presenting these examples to you, my sole purpose was to show how one learns through anthroposophy to contemplate the life of human beings.

Will we learn to contemplate every human life, every human being, with much more inner attention? Everything depends on the development of such feelings.

People can be very bright and know everything; but these are not anthroposophists in the true sense of the word, just because they know these things in an ordinary way, as one might learn the contents of a cookbook.

The important thing is for the life of human souls to be enlivened and deepened by the spiritual scientific worldview, and that we learn to work and act from a soul life that has been deepened and made alive.

Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 35 This is the first task in fostering education that is based on anthroposophy.

From the very beginning, one should work in such a way that teachers and educators know the human being in the deepest sense, so that out of the conviction that arises from observing human beings correctly, they approach children with love that is born from such thinking.

And so it follows that, when teachers train to work in an anthroposophic way, we do not begin by saying you should do it like this or like that, or you should use this or that educational trick.

First we awaken a true educational sense, born from our knowledge of the human being. If we have been successful in awakening this real love of education in teachers, then we can say that they are ready to begin their work as educators.

In education based on knowledge of the human being, as is Waldorf education for example, the first thing to consider is not conveying rules or advice about how one is supposed to teach; the first thing is to hold training courses for teachers in such a way that we find the hearts of the teachers and deepen those hearts so that love for the children grows from them.

There may be good intentions behind it, but it will achieve nothing. The only human love that can do anything arises from a deepened observation of individual cases.

An intimate study of the human being reveals that, up to the change of teeth, children are completely different from what they become later on.

A tremendous inner transformation takes place at this time, and another tremendous transformation occurs at puberty. Just consider what this change of teeth means for growing children.

It is only the outer indication of deep changes that take place in the whole human being, changes that occur only once; we get our second teeth only once, not every seven years.

With the change of teeth, the formative process in the teeth ends. After this, we retain our teeth throughout life.

The most we can do is have them filled or replace them with false ones, because our organism will not produce more. The reason for this is that, with the change of teeth, the organization of the head is brought to a certain conclusion.

If we are aware of this in each case and ask ourselves what is really being concluded with the change of teeth, we are led at this point to comprehend the whole human organization of body, soul, and spirit.

These are the three most outstanding faculties that are developed up to the change of teeth. Walking involves more than just learning to walk.

Walking is only one manifestation of what actually takes place; it means learning to adapt to the world by gaining a sense of balance.

Walking is only the most obvious expression of this process. Before learning to walk, children do not need equilibrium in the world, but now they Incarnation of the Human Being in a Physical Body 37 learn this.

How does it come about? It happens because we are born with a head that requires a certain position in relation to the forces of balance.

We can see the secret of the human head very clearly in the physical body. Bear in mind that the average human brain weighs between one and one and a half kilograms.

If this much weight were to press down on the delicate veins at the base of the brain, it would quickly crush them. This is prevented because the weight of the brain floats in the cerebral fluid that fills the head.

No doubt you recall from your studies in physics that a body floating in a fluid loses weight in proportion to the fluid that it displaces.

Apply this to the brain and you discover that our brain presses on its base with a weight of around twenty grams; the remaining weight is lost in the cerebral fluid.

Thus, at birth the brain is positioned so that its weight will be in correct proportion to the displaced cerebral fluid.

This is adjusted when we lift ourselves from crawling to an upright posture. The position of the head must now be brought into relationship to the rest of the organism.

Walking and using our hands require the head to assume a certain position. Our sense of balance proceeds from the head.

At birth, our head is relatively highly organized; until then, it is formed in the embryo, though it will not become fully developed until the change of teeth.

It is the rhythmic system that is first established during the time before the change of teeth, when it receives its special outer organization.

If you simply observe physiological processes more carefully, you can see the importance of establishing the circulatory and breathing systems during the first seven years.

Above all, you recognize how much damage can be done if the physical life of a child does not develop properly.

Children sense unconsciously how their life forces work in their circulation and breathing. A physical organ such as the brain must establish a state of balance; likewise, the soul in the first years of life plays a role in the development of the rhythmic systems.

The physical body must actively bring about a state of balance proceeding from the head. The soul, to the degree that it is organized correctly for this purpose, must be active in the changes in the circulation and breathing.

Our upright bearing and the use of our hands and arms are related to what is expressed in the brain; similarly, speech develops in us in a way that is related to the systems of circulation and breathing.

By learning to speak, we establish a relationship with our circulation and breathing. In the same way, we establish a relationship between walking and dexterity and the forces of the head by learning to hold the head so that the brain loses the correct amount of weight.

If you learn to perceive these relationships and then meet someone with a clear, high voice, particularly well-suited to reciting hymns or odes, or even to moral harangues, you can be certain that this is related to certain conditions of the circulatory system.

Or if you meet someone with a rough, harsh voice, like beating sheets of brass and tin, you may be sure that this, too, is connected with the breathing or circulatory systems.

But there is more to it than this. Beginning with this, we can look up and see into the prenatal human life that is subject to the conditions we claimed between death and a new birth.

Then we know how to help a child whose strident voice betrays the fact that there is same kind of karmic obstruction, and we can do something to free that child from those karmic hindrances.

Then, as teachers, you can work in such a way that you consider both spirit and body and, thus, can help the physical provide the right foundation for spirit.

This is extremely important, and we must investigate and understand it. In this way, knowledge of the human being must make itself felt in education, and this knowledge must be deepened in soul and spirit.

With this lecture I wanted to invoke a picture that gives an idea of what we are trying to achieve in education.

It can arise in the way of practical educational results, though many people consider it to be very impractical and fantastic daydreaming.

Today, certainly, modern psychologists and physiologists also take this into consideration. They, too, deal with these life changes: first, the period before the change of teeth, then up to puberty, and again from puberty into the twenties.

We must go further and examine these changes from the perspectives required by spiritual science. You will hear much that is already familiar to you, but now you must go into them more deeply.

People today study the substances they encounter in the world, more or less according to the physical, chemical properties alone, and they do not consider the finer attributes that they possess through their spiritual essence.

Everything today is viewed in this way. Nevertheless, the time came when people were concerned only with the external aspects of phenomena.

This was impossible in earlier times, but now we have reached a point of extreme externalization.

Consider a few comparisons. If I have a knife, there is a big difference between cutting food with it and using it to shave.

This is often ignored today. The ways that a plant, animal, or human being die are not differentiated. We encounter this phenomenon in other areas as well.

There are those who, in a sense, want to be natural philosophers, and because their aim is to be idealistic, even spiritual, they assert that plants very likely have souls; they try to ascertain, in an external way, the characteristics of plants seem to indicate certain soul qualities.

For example, they study plants that tend to open their petals when approached by insects. The insect is caught, having been attracted by the scent in a plant such as the Venus flytrap.

It snaps its petals closed, and the insect is trapped. This is thought to be a soul quality in the plant. Walking, Speaking, Thinking 43 But there is something else that works in the same way, and it can be found in all sorts of places.

A mouse approaches it and is attracted by the smell of a dainty morsel; it begins to nibble, and the mousetrap snaps closed.

If we were to use of the same thought process as that used in the case of a plant, we might say that the mousetrap has a soul.

This kind of thinking, although legitimate in certain situations, never leads to conclusions of any depth, but remains more or less on the surface.

If we desire true knowledge of the human being, we must penetrate to the very depths of human nature. We must be able to look in a completely unbiased way at phenomena that appear paradoxical compared to an external view of things.

Moreover, we must consider everything that, together, constitutes the entire human organization. A being having only an etheric organism, however, cannot experience feelings nor acquire an inner consciousness.

For this purpose, human beings have an astral organism, which we have in common with the world of animals. This might seem like an external organization, but in these lectures you will see how inward this can be.

In addition to this, human beings have an I being, which cannot be found in the animal world; we alone possess this among earthly beings.

What we are speaking of is in no way merely an outer, intellectual pattern. Rather, it is the result of observation.

If we study a child before the change of teeth, for example, we see that development depends mostly on the physical organism.

The physical body must adapt gradually to the outer world, not all at once, even in the crudest physical sense. A child must remain closely connected, so to speak, with another being of like nature, growing only gradually into the outer world.

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Alan Hersh is a pianist that has performed in solo and chamber music concerts throughout the United States.

He is currently a professor of music at the University of Kentucky. Photoshop CS3 for Forensics Professionals. George Reis.

Digital imaging technology has been used in forensics since at least , yet until now there? Photoshop CS3 for Forensics Professionals serves the everyday, real-world needs of law enforcement and legal personnel dealing with digital images including both photos and video stills.

This book is an excellent tool for: Law enforcement personnel, from crime scene and arson investigators, detectives, and patrol officers to forensic photographers, fingerprint examiners, video analysts, tool mark and footwear examiners, and criminalists.

Security pros in such fields as private investigation, insurance, fraud detection, and loss prevention. Scientific and technical users of Photoshop with workflows similar to law enforcement, such as medical photographers, research imaging experts, engineering and architecture staff, and industrial photographers.

Staff responsible for maintaining a photo archive or printing images for court. Photoshop CS3 for Forensics Professionals is the only book to provide forensics professionals with specific answers to their imaging questions.

This is the perfect resource for those who want to move from simple theory to the essential skills needed to be more effective.

This resource is dividied into three parts: Part I: The Essentials is about setting up your workflow, archiving your images, and familiarizing yourself with Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Bridge, including the setting up of preferences.

Also covered are the best practices in writing reports and providing courtroom testimony. Part II: The Digital Darkroom teaches how to use Photoshop to accomplish what traditionally was done in the darkroom, from correcting color casts to making prints and exhibits for courtroom use.

The companion CD-ROM provides sample images—including various accident and crime scenes—you can use to practice the techniques from the book while?

It also includes several scripts, plug-ins, and actions so you can work more effectively. In addition, instructor's materials are available so you can use book in workshops and training seminars.

Order this one-of-a-kind resource today! The First Practical Guide to the Use of Photoshop in Forensics Investigations This timely book is the first to take the forensic use of digital imaging out of the classroom and into the real world for law enforcement, legal, and other forensics professionals.

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