Dr. Rudolf Steiner was a highly respected and well-published scientific, literary and philosophical scholar who was particularly known for his work on Goethe’s scientific writings. He later came to incorporate his scientific investigations with his interest in spiritual development. He became a forerunner in the field of spiritual-scientific investigation for the modern 20th century individual.
His background in history and civilizations coupled with his observation in life gave the world the gift of Waldorf Education. It is a deeply insightful application of learning based on the Study of Humanity with developing consciousness of self and the surrounding world.
Rudolf Steiner, speaking in Oxford in 1922, defined “three golden rules” for teachers: “to receive the child in gratitude from the world it comes from; to educate the child with love; and to lead the child into the true freedom which belongs to man.”
Rudolf Steiner first introduced Anthroposophy, (from Greek “wisdom of man”) in the early decades of the twentieth century. Anthroposophy is a worldwide spiritual movement based on the work of Rudolf Steiner with national societies in many countries. It has a world headquarters in Dornach, near Basel in Switzerland.
Anthroposophy has applications in almost every field of life. Work arising from Steiner’s insights continues to this day in many practical fields, encompassing arts, science, education, farming, medicine and social matters. The most popular of these practical realizations, Waldorf Education, has its visible results in more than 700 schools all over the world. While anthroposophy forms the theoretical basis to the teaching methods used in Waldorf schools, it is not taught to the students.
Rudolf Steiner believed that true human progress is not possible without finding a way to integrate our increasing mastery of the physical world with a renewed understanding of, and participation in, the spiritual. This he believed could be done, beginning in our century, in a scientific manner by strengthening and deepening our power of thinking until it becomes capable of directly and consciously apprehending spiritual truths.
The works of Rudolf Steiner (about 30 books written by himself or with collections of his own writings, and 6,000 lectures grouped into 270 volumes) have been published. There is absolutely nothing secret in Anthroposophy. It is not a religion and it has no cults. It is cultivated individually, in open study groups and in the institutions where it is practiced.