Daily Archives: September 2, 2023

‘We are the art of the dead’.

“Of what significance is it to one who has gone through the gates of death when they now see embedded in the souls ebbing and flowing in our world, the memories which these souls streaming by have of the dead? When they perceive these memories what do they mean to our beloved dead?.. “ ~Rudolf Steiner*

Dear friends – For many years I have made working with the dead an important priority in my life of Applied Anthroposophy. Our dearly beloved give us so much when we dedicate our thinking toward them in the spiritual realms.

I love this idea from Rudolf Steiner: ‘We are the art of the dead’.*

~Bruce Roloff

We are called to continue our relationships with those across the Threshold. The Original Calendar of the Soul given to us by Rudolf Steiner with its marking of the birth & death days of notable individuals, affords us many opportunities to consider how our memories, spiritual thoughts, & the reading of Anthroposophical content, can be to those in the spiritual world – What would it be like to imagine it like how art is to us in the physical world..?

We are called to turn our thoughts to the spiritual worlds, not out of mere fancy, or with a wish they could still be with us, but “because of the conviction gained through Spiritual Science that in turning our thoughts to the other worlds, we are able to make a contribution to this world, by ennobling and invigorating the conceptions needed for our willing, thinking, and feeling.”*

We turn our thoughts to those we have known, or admired, in the knowledge out of spiritual science, that we can be helpful to them – & they to us, as we continue our relationship.

It seems that lately we been given some powerful opportunities to practice this. It’s always interesting to me when I take the time to connect the dots between various souls who were born or died on the same day.

Today we have an interesting combination. So take a breath, it’s going to be a long post. Just take what sticks out for you & leave the rest. And as always Please share what comes up for you.

Blessings on this working:

Planetary influences on metals. Lili Kolisko’s empirical research

TODAY in1889 – Birthday of Lili Kolisko a scientist & anthroposopher. The rising image method she developed enabled the detection of cosmic effects in earthly substances for the first time & made her a pioneer of biodynamic agriculture.

She was  the daughter of a typesetter, born in Vienna. Together with her two step-sisters, she grew up very poor, burdened by her father’s drunkenness. Still she was able to attend high school & graduate with honors. After the outbreak of the First World War, she worked at a hospital where she learned to use a wide variety of medical laboratory techniques. This is where she met the young assistant doctor Eugen Kolisko. They were married in 1917. Both were united by a strong interest in the natural sciences & anthroposophy .

After Lili Kolisko had met Rudolf Steiner for the first time in 1915 , she wrote a letter asking for suggestions for the development of a chemistry oriented towards the humanities.

In 1919 the Kolisko couple had a daughter & the family moved to Stuttgart , where Eugen Kolisko worked as a teacher in the newly founded Waldorf School .

In July of the same year, Eugen Kolisko & Rudolf Steiner researched a cure for foot-and-mouth disease, which was rampant at the time. Lili Kolisko was entrusted with the laboratory work required to find out the correct dosage of the agent.

Rudolf Steiner instructed her to carry out germination experiments on plants with various dilutions & to record the result in the form of a curve. Lili Kolisko also examined the blood of the sick animals &, in 1922, when little was known about the function of the spleen, was able to prove a metabolic regulator secreted by the spleen in her pioneering work “Spleen function and the platelet question”. In the course of this work with Steiner they founded the Biological Institute at the Goetheanum..

Rudolf Steiner considered Lili Kolisko’s research work to be very important & often visited her in her laboratory to discuss the results & provide further suggestions. He worked with both Koliskos emphasizing that science needed to overcome the prevailing materialism, to make visible the ethereal qualities in matter. Together with Steiner, Lili Kolisko developed potentization methods where the material substance was gradually thinned beyond the limits of physcial, so that the etheric efficacy emerged more & more clearly. In germination tests with plants, in the dilutions, she denoted the rhythmic properties directed by Steiner’s indications.

“Lili Kolisko’s studies of the effects of the smallest entities, have put everything that has been touching in homeopathy on such a thorough scientific basis in such a brilliant way. One can consider it absolutely scientific that the smallest entities, in tiny quantities – precisely the radiant forces which are used in the organic world – are released by using these minute quantities in a corresponding way. ” ~Rudolf Steiner, GA 327

In the afterword of her study, which summarizes her work from 1923 – 1959 on the physiological & physical proof of the effectiveness of the smallest entities , Lili Kolisko writes: “In the course that Rudolf Steiner held for doctors in Switzerland in 1920, he described it as “a beautiful task to show the effects that emerge during potentiation in certain curves”.  It was a nice job. Time and again one convinces oneself that if one takes Rudolf Steiner’s words seriously and follows his suggestions, they will come true in every detail. Plant growth shows an effectiveness again and again, but it is no longer bound to a substance. One perceives effects – without being able to prove a substance for it. You stand in amazement and admiration in front of the sheer effects of forces.  A wonderful rhythm swings through the substance, from the terrestrial to the cosmic…You have to learn to read the curves. That too is a nice job. In Jahn in 1926, I wrote in the epilogue of the book “Physiological evidence of effectiveness smallest entities in seven metals”: The curves are spiritual into the physical shut fetched images realities they reflect Weltgesetzmäßigkeiten again! If one keeps in mind, you do not shy away from the effort to penetrate deeper into this wonderful area and to think in gratitude to Rudolf Steiner, who made this knowledge accessible to us. “~ Lili Kolisko

This rhythmization method developed by Lili Kolisko, in which she worked out differentiated shaking rhythms for individual substances, was groundbreaking for later anthroposophical research on medicinal products.

On the basis of this procedure, she also examined the influence of cosmic constellations on the creative forces in the following decades. In an elaborate series of tests with one percent metal salt solutions, she was able to determine the effect of solar and lunar eclipses and the influence of the planetary movements on the seven planetary metalsdocument. I published the results of some of her work: The “star work in earth materials” during the Cosmic & Earthly Easter event a few years back.  

Together with her husband, Lili Kolisko was very active in the Anthroposophical Society. After the Christmas conference in 1924 she was commissioned by Rudolf Steiner to read the esoteric instructions given by Steiner, the so-called ‘class hours’, for the teachers of the Stuttgart Waldorf School as part of the newly established ‘First Class of the School of Spiritual Science.

After Rudolf Steiner’s death in 1925, the working conditions for the Kolisko couple, who were close to Ita Wegman & Elisabeth Vreede, became increasingly difficult due to the ongoing disputes.

Lili Kolisko’s work was also largely ignored by the anthroposophical doctors & only given little financial means, because she was not considered competent enough because she had no academic medical or pharmaceutical training. The couple left Stuttgart in 1934 & moved to London, where the ‘International Association for the Advancement of Spiritual Science’ was to be established at the suggestion of the English anthroposopher Daniel Nicol Dunlop . The plan failed because Dunlop died the following year.

In 1939 Lili Kolisko’s husband Eugen died suddenly & unexpectedly of a heart attack in a lonely train compartment of a suburban train . From then on, Lili Kolisko lived very withdrawn, but she continued her research tirelessly under the most difficult financial conditions. She also translated numerous works by her late husband into English. In 1961 she was able to complete the biography of her husband Eugen Kolisko, in which she also reports in great detail about the bitter experience with the Anthroposophical Society after Steiner’s death.

1905 – The birthday of Bernard Lievegoed born in Sumatra. His father was a journalist, his mother a teacher. When Bernard was 2 years old he contracted cholera & became paralyzed on one side. He did not learn to walk again until he was 4 years old. His daughter Christie Amons-Lievegoed points out: “When one realizes what learning to walk means in a child’s life, one can see that having to learn to walk twice has been an enormous training of will for him.” She also describes Bernard as a dreaming child, open to the wonders found in the tropical nature of his childhood, which had a deep influence. Bernard often gave credit to this upbringing which he saw as giving him ‘rich life forces’ that fortified not only his health but also the liveliness of his thinking.

His daughter describes: “In Sumatra, behind a ditch at the end of the garden, the jungle began. He saw monkeys in the trees and heard all the wonderful sounds that emanate from such a jungle at night. That fueled his imagination. What nature also provided for opportunities for adventure is described in the booklet: “The eye of the needle. We as children could not imagine our father on a crocodile hunt, although there was still much in our house that reminded us of the “Indonesian” time, such as wayang puppets and – indeed – a crocodile skin!”

Bernard’s technical interest was also apparent at an early age, diving his father’s car in the mountains. He loved all technical gadgets.  

His childhood had a cosmopolitan character; it made him a citizen of the world. His journalist father took him to Washington DC, to visit the United States Congress, where he witnessed the declaration of war on Germany. Thru his father, but also thru the cultural differences between his classmates, he experienced a lot of international politics.

At the age of 17 he went to The Hague & took his final exams there. He then decided to study medicine in Groningen.

Bernard Lievegoed was 21 years old when he encountered anthroposophy. Many ‘greats’ of the medical & pedagogical movement were present at a conference in The Hague in 1926, one year after Rudolf Steiner’s death. Thru the stories of the people who had known him, Bernard experienced Rudolf & called him his true teacher.

After graduation & military service, an important event took place in 1930, a turning point in Bernard’s life – camp “De Stakenberg”, an international meeting of anthroposophists with 1200 participants.

Bernard, aged 25, was assigned the organization of this huge camping experiment & Nel Schatborn, (who later became his 2nd wife) still a medical student, became camp commander. Truus Hinse, Bernard’s fiancée, was also present; a meeting of 3 people who would be intimately intertwined with each other’s destinies. During this camp, Bernard decides to commit himself to curative education.

He visits the “Lauenstein” in Germany, the Clinic with “Sonnenhof” as an annex in Arlesheim [Switzerland] & has the feeling of being “at home at last”. He is deeply impressed by the mood, the approach & the medical care of the children.

On September 19, 1931, the Zonnehuis in Bosch en Duin was opened, with 6 children. A year later, Bernard sends a telegram to the head of the medical movement, Ita Wegman, with the text: “Habe neues Haus kauft” (I’ve bought a new house).

His first years in curative education are characterized by great intimacy & intensity of work. There was no money, & there were also few employees who knew what anthroposophical education entailed. He worked closely in consultation with Ita Wegman about spiritual, but also extremely practical matters. She was like a mother of the emerging international curative education movement. She also gave her warm support to the initiative in Holland.

For Bernard, work in Bosch en Duin begins with the deepest confrontation of his life. He is deeply saddened that Truus, whom he has been married to less than a year, dies after the birth of their son. She was only 23 years old, he was 27 years old. While he experiences deep despair inwardly, the work must be built up. Outwardly, Europe darkens. He then says: “It is my sole purpose to bring the work of Rudolf Steiner to the world. Young people must find spiritual food against National Socialism” & he wants to make sure that the Zonnehuis can have an impact in cultural life.

In 1934 Nel Schatborn comes to the Zonnehuis & a year later they get married. This is followed by the intensive years of ever-deepening curative education, of medical work & lectures in the country, of his doctorate & the trials of the Second World War.

Immediately after, one of his children dies, a grief that opens him to whole new questions. They come to meet him from the business community & prepare his professorships in Rotterdam & Enschede & his many lecture tours.

The very 1st lecture for the ‘Society for Industry & Trade’ in 1948 has far-reaching consequences, bringing questions from the business community with an emphasis on education & training. In 1953, the ‘Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences’ [now Erasmus University] appointed him professor by special appointment of social pedagogy.

In order to have a practice ground, he founded the ‘NPI’ (Dutch Pedagogical Institute for Business) in 1954. It was an entirely new initiative within Dutch society – He shows how organizations can be seen as living organisms that go thru developmental phases. The work becomes very fruitful, courses are given for managers & bosses, it was about serving & bringing out the best in people.

Bernard Lievegoed speaks of the “spirit capital of a company”, which is just as important as the economic & the production process.  

In 1961 he took over the presidency of the Anthroposophy Association in Nederland (until 1975) from Willem Zeylmans van Emmichoven, who died unexpectedly.

Between 1968 & 1976 he was appointed to the Government Commission for Education, which was to reform the Dutch education system in Holland.

He was the chairman of the supervisory board of the Dutch Waldorf school teacher training VPA ( Vrije Pedagogische Akademie , today Hogeschool Helicon ). In 1973 he left Erasmus University to work for the Vrije Hogeschool (now Bernard Lievegoed College for Liberal Arts ), which he founded in 1971 working as rector until 1982.

In the last two decades before his death in 1992, he was increasingly active as a writer & lecturer. He exerted a lasting influence on the anthroposophical movement worldwide.  His book ‘The Battle for the Soul’ was said to have been ‘wrested from him on his deathbed’ & only published after his death, changed my life in helping me see how I can put Anthroposophy into practice.

He was an innovator in many areas, with a special intuition for what was happening at the time; that is why his initiatives always gained social support. He knew that warm, spirit-filled enthusiasm creates fertile seeds for life – now & in the future.    

1973 – Deathday of J.R.R Tolkien. His tales tell the story of human evolution in the form of a myth or fairy tale – reminiscent of the initiation rites seen in the occult traditions, & in a renewed sense in Spiritual Science. Tolkien tells about a humanity born from the Music of the spiritual Hierarchies – coming to Earth immortal & perfect, & transforming this original pureness in a love for Earth & her creations. The way Tolkien chooses numbers, images, events – everything is amazingly similar to the ancient teachings – Yes, everything reveals this presence in Tolkien’s soul – an artistic forming of past incarnations & certainly influenced by the anthroposophical Christology discussed with his friend Owen Barfield – revealing deep knowledge & images, that whisper into his inspired ear -The precise & patient, but non-intellectual, inner dialogue with the spiritual streams of a human civilization from the past, into the present & future time.

2009 – Deathday of Ernst Katz, a great teacher of anthroposophy based for many years in Ann Arbor MI, where he was professor of physics at the University there. At the retreat I attended last year in Ann Arbor, as part of the General Council of the ASA , the local community shared many stories about this powerful thinker. We heard that at the tender age of 16 Ernst joined the Anthroposophical Society & for his long life of 96 years was fully dedicated to Spiritual Science as a way of life & method of understanding the human being’s purpose on Earth.

Ernst ran the legendary Ann Arbor study group which at first held its meetings in various members’ homes. The protocol was as the same oneused in the CRC study group: Designated people present a short recap in their own words of the Steiner lecture followed by a general discussion in the group. Many folks were drawn to Ernst’s quiet way of leading. Attendance was typically 25 to 30 eager anthroposophers, & discussion was lively.

Even his physics students at the university recognized his extraordinary teaching skills & moral character. It was clear to all that Ernst saw every human connection as an event of destiny, & he treated each one with respect & reverence.

It was Ernst’s suggestion that the members of the study group buy an old abandoned fraternity house to create a place for university students interested in spiritual development to live & study – & the Rudolf Steiner House of the Great Lakes Branch was born. For many years Ernst & his wife Katherine were overseers of the building which was donated to the Anthroposophical Society in America & is now the society’s headquarters. He is still teaching from the spiritual world today!

~Arnold Böcklin

*“Each time that a dead person receives a remembrance of themself in the soul of a person who was in some way connected with them, it is always as if something streamed over to them as beauty, enhancing their life. And as to us here on earth, beauty comes from Art, so to the dead, beauty streams to them from what rays forth out of the hearts and souls of those who keep them in memory…” ~Rudolf Steiner, GA 157a – The Forming of Destiny and Life after Death: LECTURE 4: THE CONNECTION BETWEEN THE SPIRITUAL AND THE PHYSICAL WORLDS, AND HOW THEY ARE EXPERIENCED AFTER DEATH – Berlin, 7th December, 1915.

~Elizabeth Wang

Thank you dear friends for keeping the connection alive!


2 September 2023 – “Speaking with the stars”: Tonight around midnight Venus (Occult Mercury) stands stationary, bringing its current retrograde path to an end. Rising now before sunrise amid the stars of Cancer the Crab – to the lower right (southeast) of the Beehive Cluster.

Sunrise: 6:28 A.M.
Sunset: 7:30 P.M.
Moonrise: 9:08 P.M.
Moonset: 9:29 A.M.
Moon Phase: Waning gibbous (90%)

~Arnold Böcklin

Rudolf Steiner’s Lectures on this date

Saturday 23 September 2023

Community Prep-Stir / Potluck / Bon-fire

*Autumnal Equinox

*Yom Kippur

*Michaelmas Festival

6 – 8 pm at the Lucchesi-Archer-Ginsberg domicile

Please Bring Food & Drink to share, & a jar for the prep

RSVP Hazel@ReverseRitual.com

30 September 2023 – Our Annual Michaelmas Festival & Zinniker Farm Day

for more info.