The Americas – Rudolf Steiner’s Blind Spot
I once heard some of what I call RS’s apocrypha, a story someone told me – He was asked why he didn’t come to America to lecture, and allegedly replied: “I’d have to go silent for five years”.
If we read his Geographic Medicine, he points out that the Celtic and Druid priests traveled to America, to study the role of the double in illness, for the double is much stronger there. My own research, on the effect of the stronger double on immigrating Europeans, discovers that this absence of soul density, tends to keep the thinking of the European unable to ground itself here. They remain disconnected from the spiritual essence of the Americas.
A very important read, for someone who wants to become familiar with the deeper mysteries, should read Stephen Clarke’s: “The Mexican Mysteries – reimagined”
The following quote is in my book: “American Anthroposophy”
Following the American way of thinking, an attempt was made to extend the mechanical over human life itself. It will be an American Mystery to make use of the magnetism of the Earth, its double-ness. (paraphrase, R.S. lecture 12, The Reappearance of Christ in the Etheric.)
I’ve read the following books, by Europeans, on America: “The Other America”, Carl Stegmann; “America’s Way – the tasks ahead”, Dietrich V. Asten; and “America and Americanism”, F. W. Zeylmans van Emmichover. Not one mention of the Native American cultures.
Not surprising, when we find this, from GA-354:
When from this point of view we consider the savages of today, it must strike us that the men of primeval times — called in the question here primitive men — were not like the modern savages, but that the latter have, of course, descended from the former, from the primeval men. (emphasis added).
I’ve been reading Steiner’s lectures on the Temple legend. It is rooted in a Christian ethos, which does not touch the spiritual life of the Americas at all. The Americas have their own Creation Stories.
RS describes two migrations from the decay of Atlantis. One East and one West. There were actually three, although not precisely the same. Atlantis had travelers, folk who wandered the world in ships of water and air. They wove the whole of the rest of the world’s peoples together, by sharing the different stories and knowledge held by each, more or less otherwise isolated culture. Evidence for this is found in the works of archaeologists, who have discovered the same 15 to 30 symbols shared all over the world (15-30 is the level of disagreement among “experts”).
When Atlantis fell, the travelers settled into those peoples they had been serving.
Those who migrated East, RS describes as going to somewhere near the Gobi Desert, to found the mystery centers that led to the post-Atlantean civilizations. As to those who went West, he remarks:
“The Indians then took over with them to the West all that was great in the Atlantean culture. What was the greatest thing of all to the Indians? It was that he was still able dimly to sense something of the ancient greatness and majesty of a period which existed in the old Atlantean epoch, in which the divisions of the races had hardly begun, in which men could look up to the Sun and perceive the Spirits of Form penetrating through a sea of mist. Through an ocean of mist the Atlantean gazed up at that which to him was not divided into six or seven, but which acted together. This co-operative activity of the seven Spirits of Form was called by the Atlanteans the Great Spirit…He clung firmly to the Great Spirit of the primeval past.“R.S. Lecture 6: “The Mission of the Folk Souls”
The Prophecies and Oral History of the Hopi Nation are especially important stories with which to become familiar. “The Mystery of the True White Brother”.
http://ipwebdev.com/hermit/eldbr.html and “The Songs of a True White Brother”
Since the time of these Atlantean migrations, those who went West never lost their primeval Earth Religions. These cultures were in a kind of stasis, which at the same time allowed them to keep their various types of community and social relationships. Their religions often recognized Gods of entirely different names, and conceptual understandings.
Wisdoms of the East, such as Buddhism, and of the Center, such as Christianity, – they mostly work with the chakras above the heart. The shamans in the Americas included the chakras below the heart in their disciplines. They teach of an Underworld.
These connections created cultures where individualism was held back, so that the community would remain healthy. All the life of the world, the land, the plants, the stones, the animals were also parts of the same community. The individual human being was not “separate”, in any way, from the rest of the world’s various beings. Even rocks had their own kind of intelligence.
Those who went East, slowly evolved cultures where the ego could develop. With the arrival of unnatural science, these peoples felt cut off from all, and came to live in a world of matter only, no spirit.
During this time, those who went West maintained this intimacy with the spirits of nature, and developed cultures where the community was more important than the individual. One had a role, yet as a part. In practice, individuals had a lot of freedom – indigenous Ways are very democratic. Every voice was heard, and individuals could chart their own course if they wish.
Those who went East were also helped to forget the Americas even existed.
The languages of the Americas then acquired many ways of seeing that the life of the community is central to the health of the individual. Certain ways the invading Europeans thought and acted – as individuals – seem to them to be a kind of madness.
What sane human being could believe the Earth Mother could be owned.
When the Catholic Church-Empire invades the Americas, it is essentially a spiritual wave, that collides – and breaks – against this land of mountains running North and South, the spine of the Earth to a poet.
Not even imagining the deeps of this land, the white folk cannot see what is right in front of them. For example, the Hopi – the people of peace – expected them. They were told by their priests – thousands of years ago – who led the migrations West, that this white race would come and claim the land for their own.
This invasion would bring a near destruction of their culture, with perhaps only one or two people able to still believe their heritage. When I went to visit the Hopi in 1985, over an Easter Weekend, I was talking to an Elder – Grandfather David Monogye – about the Hopi Prophecy, when his grand daughter stepped between us – we had been holding hands, as he was a small blind man, of the age of 106 years – and she told me to leave immediately, she didn’t want me disturbing this old mans dreams.
The Prophecy expects that among the white race, there would be a “true” white brother. It took me more than a few years to learn what were the truths we were to know. Simple in a way, … we would know and honor and treat the Earth, the way they do- as Holy.
Most of us know the outrageous ways native peoples all over the earth have been treated. A weaving that can not be undone … yet …
We humans have this idea of multi-tasking. She who has the whole world in His Hands does that on a level even our wildest imagination cannot appreciate …
Enter stage left, unnatural science is born in opposition with the Church, and in the beginning of that adventure many natural philosophers were unwilling to give up the idea of God, and through taking the world apart – they thought they had “It” when they discovered electricity.
Over time, the baby scientists changed their minds. Made their own religion – all is matter, there is no spirit. Since this is clearly not true, there then had to flow consequences. The world of spirit has observable rules, yet if we choose not to go with the flow, our individualized life-navigation begins to lead us toward the making our own religion.
Visibly, our modern world-culture is falling apart. The Divine Mystery has stepped back in a way, by distributing choice everywhere. Within the reach of our own wills we are effectively part of, and an aspect of, the Mystery.
RS gave birth to much. A staggering genius – worthy of a dozen noble prizes. All the same, his Anthroposophy is not the only way to spiritual intimacy. He did, however, tie the philosophical foolishness of materialism in a knot. Most of the world has no idea this has been done.
There are ideas in the Hopi Prophecy about the “true” white brother. “They are Sun clan, they are the children of the Sun.” At the time of the end of Atlantis, Christ was still a Sun Being.
The Hopi were told that, when the last days of their culture arose, the whole world would be locked into two wars (WWI and WWII). Then would come a third crisis, whose “The Red Symbol may take command of the four forces of nature for the benefit of the Sun.” “May”. We call these four forces the Ethereal World.
Those, who know my works about the need for exoteric and esoteric Christianity to join each other, should not be surprised that in my view the Red Symbol is the Rose Cross united with the Sacred Heart.
Among other lore, of the indigenous peoples in America, is the idea that the future might find the Cross united with the Circle. To my understanding, the people of the I development, are symbolized by the Cross, and the peoples of Earth Religion communities are symbolized by the Circle.
It is not an accident that fallen Christianity (the modern Catholic Church, not the Religion) would crash and burn when it ran into the Americas. The Mother lives there, as a never forgotten divine power. The Way of Christ is the Cross, and the Way of the Mother is the Circle. A seed of this union of cooperating activity is the appearance of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.
When Europeans brought Steiner and Anthroposophy to the Americas, they essentially committed an act a spiritual imperialism. This is made all the worse, due to the fact that the practice of Anthroposophy is effectively “Steinerism” – a kind of religious treating of what we read as if it was spiritual fact.
Rudolf Steiner’s blind spot infects all of his readers, although – in spite of this – today many America anthroposophists are struggling to find a right relationship to the Mysteries of the Americas.