31 October 2018 – “Speaking with the Stars”: This Halloween the evening is moonless, since it’s the Last-quarter Moon. Bella Luna is between Cancer & Leo, rising around midnight in the east-northeast far below Castor & Pollux. The Moon reaches perigee, the closest point in its orbit around Earth, at 3:23 p.m. CDT. She is then 230,034 miles away from us.
In early evening, the two brightest celestial objects in good view are Vega high in the west & Mars lower in the south. Draw a line between them – & a little below the line’s midpoint shines Altair, with fainter Tarazed to its upper right by about a finger width at arm’s length.
Rudolf Steiner’s Lectures on this day
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
The first day of All-hallow-tide, observed until November 6 (Western Christianity)
Halloween (Ireland, Canada, United Kingdom, United States etc…)
Hop-tu-Naa is a Celtic festival celebrated in the Isle of Man on 31 October. Predating Halloween, it is the celebration of the original New Year’s Eve (Oie Houney). It is thought to be the oldest unbroken tradition in the Isle of Man
Samhain is a Gaelic festival marking the end of the harvest season & the beginning of winter or the “darker half” of the year. It is the cross quarter between the autumn equinox & the winter solstice.
The Mound of the Hostages, a Neolithic passage tomb at the Hill of Tara, is aligned with the Samhain sunrise. It is mentioned in some of the earliest Irish literature & many important events in Irish mythology happen or begin on Samhain.
It was the time when cattle were brought back down from the summer pastures & when livestock were slaughtered for the winter. As at Beltane, special bonfires were lit.
Like Beltane, Samhain was seen as a liminal time, when the boundary between this world & the Otherworld could more easily be crossed. This meant the Aos Sí, the ‘spirits’ or ‘fairies’, could more easily come into our world. Offerings of food & drink were left outside for them.
The souls of the dead were also thought to revisit their homes seeking hospitality. Feasts were had, at which the souls of dead kin were beckoned to attend & a place set at the table for them.
Mumming & guising were part of the festival, & involved people going door-to-door in costume (or in disguise), often reciting verses in exchange for food.
Divination rituals & games were also a big part of the festival.
The first day of the Day of the Dead, celebrated until November 2 (Spanish: Día de Muertos) The multi-day holiday focuses on gatherings of family to pray for & remember members who have died, & help support their spiritual journey.
Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars called ofrendas, honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, & the favorite foods & beverages of the departed, & visiting graves with these as gifts. Visitors also leave possessions of the deceased at the graves.
Scholars trace the origins of the modern Mexican holiday to indigenous observances dating back hundreds of years and to an Aztec festival dedicated to the goddess Mictecacihuatl. The holiday has spread throughout the world, being absorbed within other deep traditions for honoring the dead.
683 – During the Siege of Mecca, the Kaaba, catches fire & burns down. The literal meaning of the Arabic word ka`bah (كَعْبَة) is “cube”, or “House of God”, considered the most sacred site in Islam, a similar role to the Tabernacle & Holy of Holies in Judaism.
500 years ago, on Oct. 31, 1517, the story goes, that the small-town monk, Martin Luther, marched up to the castle church in Wittenberg & nailed his ‘95 Theses’ to the door, lighting the flame of the Reformation — the split between the Catholic & Protestant churches. Luther’s act is one of the cornerstones of world history, & remains a lasting symbol of resistance.
Nearly all of American history bears the imprint of that act of protest. Luther’s challenge, the protection he obtained, & the reformers he inspired laid the foundation for the establishment of colonial America.
In 1934, an African American pastor from Georgia made the trip of a lifetime, sailing across the Atlantic Ocean, through the gates of Gibraltar, and across the Mediterranean Sea to the Holy Land. After this pilgrimage, he traveled to Berlin, attending an international conference of Baptist pastors. While in Germany, this man — who was named Michael King — became so impressed with what he learned about the reformer Martin Luther that he decided to do something dramatic. He offered the ultimate tribute to the man’s memory by changing his own name to Martin Luther King. His 5-year-old son was also named Michael — and to the son’s dying day his closest relatives would still call him Mike — but not long after the boy’s father changed his own name, he decided to change his son’s name too, & Michael King Jr. became known to the world as Martin Luther King Jr.
Another dynamic measure of the influence of Martin Luther is the quintessentially modern idea of the individual — of our personal responsibility before ourselves & our God, rather than before any institution, whether church or state. This was as unthinkable before Luther. The contemporary idea of “The People,” along with the democratic impulse that proceeds from it – The more recent ideas of pluralism, religious liberty, & self-government all entered history through the door that Luther opened.
Luther’s second unyielding act of courage was at the ‘imperial diet’ held in the city of Worms in 1521, when he made it clear that he feared God’s judgment more than the judgment of church leaders in that room.
And suddenly the individual had the freedom & possibility of thinking for themselves.
Martin Luther was not inclined to tilt at papal windmills. In fact, until about 1520 he was a vigorous champion of the church. He desired desperately to help Rome elude the fate it ended up experiencing. In fact, in a case of Oedipusian irony he became the very man who brought about everything he had hoped to avoid. As his story illustrates, it was a sublime & ridiculous decoction of forces that created the perfect storm that burst over the European continent, creating what we now call the Reformation.
Today the Catholic & Lutheran churches are taking the memory of 1517 in hand. Pope Francis joined leaders of the Lutheran World Federation in Sweden to hold a joint service in a spirit of unity after 500 years of division.
1517 – Deathday of Fra Bartolomeo, Italian artist
1984 – Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is assassinated by two Sikh security guards. Riots break out in New Delhi & other cities – 4,000 Sikhs are killed.
2015 – Russian Metrojet Flight 9268 is bombed over the northern Sinai Peninsula, killing all 224 people on board
POD (Poem Of the day)
~My soul duels with worms
Hidden in the clay of being
That would gnaw the scroll of mythos
Witch I carry in my heart whole
& speak thru the living word…
I will cut bait & continue singing...
On All Hallows-tide, the eve of All Saints’ Day, it was a Medieval Christian tradition for the poor to go to wealthy homes offering to pray for the recently departed in that household, since folks knew that prayers could help the dead on their journey in the after-life. And as a token of their appreciation, the rich would give them food & beer.
Many Halloween customs come from this same ritual. Visitors would show up holding lanterns made of hollowed-out turnips with candles inside, which represented souls in purgatory. Masses were held so that souls wouldn’t feel neglected & haunt believers. There were costumes & masks, & mummers plays to depict the various stages of the after-life.
But after the Protestant Reformation — which can be traced back to a different Oct. 31 event (exactly 500 years ago today): Martin Luther’s 1517 publication of his 95 theses — the idea that souls could be saved in this way began to lose popularity in many of the new denominations.
Some Catholics kept up the practice of going door-to-door on the eve of All Saints’ Day, which became known as “Souling.” By the 1840s, when a wave of Irish & Scottish immigrants brought the custom to the U.S., it was basically a pagan/secular pastime. Young people danced outside tenement apartments in exchange for gifts. Costumes were made out of old clothes, & faces painted with burnt corks, while tricks included stuffing cabbages in chimneys & whacking each other with bags of flour.
Although the Irish Catholics faced widespread prejudice, the celebration having been stripped of its Catholic underpinning, quickly proved to be popular. As those immigrants began to assimilate, newspapers reported the custom trending among 19th century college students. In the early 1900s, high schools, rotary clubs & charities began to throw Halloween parties. By the 1930s, North America had a new term for the old tradition: Trick-or-Treating. And as suburban swelled in the 1950s, Trick-or-Treating grew into the kid-friendly practice seen today.
Here in America, Halloween calls for an interaction with spooky strangers, that come out of the night, knocking on our door, shouting, give me a treat or you’ll get a trick. On a spiritual level, trick-or-treat, can be seen as a demand that strangers, a symbol of the unfamiliar parts of ourselves, give up their gifts to us. There is a lot of energy that gets locked up in the dark, & Halloween is an opportunity for us to dialogue with the dark, the shadow side of The Self, & call that energy back.
Light & dark are not opposites, but 2 parts of the same cycle. In order to fully appreciate the festivals of light, which return with the Winter Solstice, we must 1st grow in the dark womb of our perennial inward journey. With the veil between the worlds so thin, great transformations are possible, since the power of all the dimensions are available to us.
It is not only the veil between the physical & spiritual worlds that thin, it can also be the division between any 2 polarities, like the left & right hemispheres in our brains for instance, or between any 2 realities that are struggling to coexist, like war & peace for instance. This dark night can represent a resolution of paradox, a respectful meeting of the different sides of the same coin, witch can initiate the healing transformation required, in order to let the light back into our lives, once we’ve come to understand & own our side of the dark…
Look for me there, in the dark…
Homework: Dress up as who you want to be in the coming year
~Hazel Archer Ginsberg
~ALL SOULS FESTIVAL~
Come Experience the Journey of the Soul in the Life between Death & Rebirth
6:45 pm – 9:30 pm Friday 2 November 2018 at theRudolf Steiner Branch 4249 North Lincoln Avenue. Chicago, IL 60618
Guitar by Philp Armetta, Didgeridoo by CG, Fratres by Arvo Part 1 – Cello by Martin Brenman, Piano by Danuta Berger
The Descent of Inanna – An archetype of the soul in the spirit world with Hazel Archer Ginsberg
We cross the threshold for the Leminscate Journey thru the Planetary Spheres & the Zodiac – Eurythmy with Mary Ruud +
Moon: Sheila Donahue
Mercury: Nancy Melvin
Venus: Deborah Rogers
Sun: Alison Biagi
Jupiter: Mary Spalding
Saturn: Martine Benmann
an Artistic Exploration with Nancy Melvin during the Circle of Remembrance
Please contact Carolyn Arnett with the names of those who have died this year to be read in the Circle
$10 Donation goes to support Eurythmy
Snacks to Share Encouraged
For more info. contact Hazel Archer Ginsberg
‘The Festival Life’
with Hazel Archer Ginsberg for WITH = Waldorf in the Home
Monday 5 November 2018 from 8:15 am – 9:30 am
at the Chicago Waldorf School Andersonville Campus, 5200 N Ashland Ave, Chicago
In the cafe (on far north east side of first floor) after the Day of the Dead assembly
For more info. contact Judy Shaver email@example.com
2018 Fall Youth Conference in Chicago Nov 1-4th, 2018
Our Ideas – Our Ideals – Working together to create together
Tamarack Waldorf School will stay as a group though Friday evening- the rest of us will carry on through Sunday at 1PM.
Sponsored by the Christian Community in Coordination with Tamarack Waldorf School, Bart Eddy and Detroit Community School, Elderberries Chicago and musician Jen Zimberg.
High School students that want to come together to work- build- paint- create – in conversation and singing – Our Ideas – Our Ideals – Working together to create together
for more info. contact Ann Burfeind
The Central Regional Council of the Anthroposophical Society in America invites you to join our ongoing study conversation. The study has been divided amongst five volunteers who will summarize their section to rebuild it as a foundation for our conversation. Please familiarize yourself with the lecture if possible so you will feel comfortable sharing your reflections and thoughts with the group.
This collection of lectures has been republished by Anthroposophic Press under the title: “A Western Approach to Reincarnation and Karma”
This will be a “Zoom” conference call allowing us an opportunity to see one another while conversing (or audio only if you prefer). To connect to the audio/video-conference:
Option 1. Click link below if you wish to connect through your computer (a headset is recommended)
Option 2. Call in using your telephone.
United States: +1 669 900 6833 or +1 646 558 8656
Access Code: 320-455-319
Option 3. You can use a combination of Options 1 and 2 (computer and phone). If you use the phone, please turn off the audio on your computer to prevent audio feedback.
Please join us!
|Agenda for our Study Call
7:15 Welcome and Introductions
7:25 Study led by six volunteers
Mary – pages 53 to 56
Nick – pages 56 to 60
Hazel – pages 60 to 63
Travis – pages 63 to 65
Alberto – pages 65 to end
8:25 Identify volunteers for our next study call (Chapter 5): January 9
8:28 Close with verse
For more info. contact Hazel Archer Ginsberg
The Changing Nature of Childhood Health & Illness
by Dr. Thomas Cowan, M.D.
Nov 15, 2018 — Morning Lecture
10:30am—12noon; Location: 4249 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago, IL 60618 (Rudolf Steiner Branch);
childcare available for additional $5 cash donation at day of event as needed.
Click link below for tickets and more info.
Nov 15, 2018 — Evening Lecture
7:00 pm—8:30pm; Location: 2135 W. Wilson Ave. Chicago, IL 60625 (The Christian Community Church)
Click link below for tickets and more info.
Tickets are $12. No tickets sold at the door. This event will sell out.
Please join us in welcoming world-renowned doctor and author Dr. Thomas Cowan, M.D. from San Francisco, CA as he describes his research and experience with today’s children and their health, based on his newest book, Vaccines, Autoimmunity and the Changing Nature of Childhood Illness. The lecture will include suggestions to support the best possible health in our children. We are providing two opportunities to hear Dr. Cowan speak.
We will provide childcare for the morning session in an adjoining space to the lecture, to help parents of young children attend. Childcare will not be available for the evening lecture.
Dr. Thomas Cowan M.D. is board-certified in anthroposophic medicine. He is a founding board member of the Weston A Price Foundation and is author of The Fourfold Path to Healing, a companion book to Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. He writes the “Ask the Doctor” column in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts.
He is author of Human Heart, Cosmic Heart (A Doctor’s Quest to Understand, Treat and Prevent Cardiovascular Disease). He has three grown children and currently practices medicine in San Francisco where he resides with his wife Lynda Smith Cowan.
This series is presented and sponsored by:
Waldorf Learning Support http://arcturus.info
Arcturus Rudolf Steiner Education Program http://arcturus.info
Friday 16 November 2018
Friday 30 November 2018 – 7 – 9 pm
HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT: THE MYSTERY OF THE APOCALYPSE with Margaret Shipman
‘Apocalypse’ today almost always means war, but its primary definition is REVELATION. the Book of Revelations seems warlike until we begin to delve into the messages, seals, trumpets and bowls as stages of initiation! We will explore the complexities of this amazing book of the Bible by taking a journey through the 7-pointed star and the Apocalyptic Seals of the 1907 Munich Conference.
Saturday 1 December 2018 – 10 am – noon
THE CHRISTMAS CONFERENCE
How can we begin to understand the importance of The Christmas Conference of 1923/24? Can it be understood as so profound to consider it a second turning point of time?
We will take a journey with the foundation stone, beginning with the laying of the first stone, a physical one, for the first Goetheanum, in 1913. Then — through the phoenix experience of the 1922/23 fire, and its journey back to earth a year later—we find it again, as a foundation stone meditation planted into our hearts. The introduction of The Foundation Stone Meditation was a central focus of the Christmas Conference week. It was one of three great gifts which Rudolf Steiner brought at this time as powerful spiritual tools for human evolution.
Margaret Shipman has been a member of the Anthroposophical Society for 30 years and considers the work of Rudolf Steiner to be the core of her life. In 2002 she started a national study group for anthroposophy – ‘Geographically Engaged Members Studygroup’, or G.E.M.S. She is also a cellist and pianist and spent 36 years repairing and making instruments of the violin family. She co-authored the book titled Violin Restoration with her mentor, Hans Weisshaar, who was in the second-ever Waldorf class and met Rudolf Steiner as a child.
For more info. contact Hazel Archer Ginsberg
Wed. 5 December 2018 CRC Zoom Call 7:15pm – 8:30pm – Reincarnation & Karma
with special guest: Dr. Ross Rentea: “A presentation from the karma and the work together of Rudolf Steiner and Ita Wegman”
Steiner considered I. Wegman a true “friend”, companion over many incarnations, and invaluable helper. In her incarnation in the 20th century she collaborated with him in writing a book, asked decisive questions that led to the Christmas Foundation Conference, the First Class, and more. We will look especially at their working together on the “Fundamentals of Therapy” a work on which R. Steiner put finishing touches until hours before crossing the threshold.
Ross Rentea, MD, has been practicing anthroposophical medicine in Chicago for 35 years. He is a member of the Anthroposophical Society(1972), the First Class of the School for Spiritual Science(1974), the Physicians Association for Anthroposophic Medicine (1984) and the Christian Community (1976). He has served on the Board of the American College of Anthroposophic Medicine. He has lectured nationally and internationally, and published and written numerous scientific research articles and recently (2017) the book “Childhood Illnesses and Immunizations”. Besides anthroposophical medicine his current interests are in better understanding the seven Rhythms of the Foundation Stone. He is a co-founder of the True Botanica Company www.truebotanica.com and the Lili Kolisko Institute for Anthroposophical Medicine www.koliskoinstitute.org .
For more info. contact Hazel Archer Ginsberg