ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY:
3 April 33 – According to the spiritual scientific research of Rudolf Steiner, Today is the Death Day of Christ Jesus…
& at the same time in Mexico Vitzliputzli crucified a powerful black magician. “Now at a certain time a being was born in Central America who set himself a definite task within this culture. The old, original inhabitants of Mexico linked the existence of this being with a definite idea or picture. They said he had entered the world as the son of a virgin who had conceived him through super earthly powers, inasmuch as it was a feathered being from the heavens who impregnated her. When one makes researches with the occult powers at one’s disposal, one finds that the being to whom the ancient Mexicans ascribed a virgin birth was born in the year 1 A.D. and lived to be thirty-three years old. These facts emerge when, as stated, one examines the matter with occult means. This being set himself a quite specific task.
At this same time in Central America another man was born who was destined by birth to become a high initiate of Taotl. This man had in his previous earthly incarnations been initiated as described above and through the fact that he had many, many times repeated the procedure involving the excision of the stomach, which has been described to you and which there is no need to recapitulate, he had been gradually equipped with a lofty earthly and super-earthly knowledge. This was one of the greatest black magicians, if not the greatest ever to tread the earth; he possessed the greatest secrets that are to be acquired on this path. He was faced directly with a momentous decision as the year 30 A.D. approached, namely whether or not, as a single human individual, to become so powerful through continuous initiation that he would come to know a certain basic secret. Through knowledge of this secret he would have then been able to give such a shock and impetus to the coming evolution of man on earth that humanity in the fourth and fifth post-Atlantean epochs would have been thrown into terrible darkness, with the result that what the ahrimanic powers had striven for in these epochs could have come into existence.
Then a conflict began between this super-magician and the being to whom a virgin birth was ascribed, and one finds from one’s research that it lasted for three years. The being of the virgin birth bore a name that, when we try to transpose it into our speech approximates Vitzliputzli. He is a human person who, among all these beings who otherwise only moved about in spirit form and could only be perceived through atavistic clairvoyance, in actual fact became man, so the story goes, through his virgin birth. The three year conflict ended when Vitzliputzli was able to have the great magician crucified, and not only through the crucifixion to annihilate his body but also to place his soul under a ban, by this means rendering its activities powerless as well as its knowledge. Thus the knowledge assimilated by the great magician of Taotl was killed. In this way Vitzliputzli was able to win again for earthly life all those souls who, as indicated, had already received the urge to follow Lucifer and leave the earth. Through the mighty victory he had gained over the powerful black magician, Vitzliputzli was able to imbue men again with the desire for earthly existence and successive incarnations.” ~ Rudolf Steiner, The Mexican Mysteries and the Knights Templar Inner Impulses of Evolution lecture 3
Feast Day of Mary of Egypt. also known as Maria Aegyptica. In Goethe’s Faust Mary of Egypt is one of the 3 penitent saints who pray to the Virgin Mary for forgiveness for Faust. Her words are set by Mahler in his 8th Symphony, as the final saint’s appeal to the Mater Gloriosa. Her Story: At the age of twelve she ran away from her parents to the city of Alexandria. Here she lived an extremely dissolute life. In her Vita it states that she often refused the money offered for her sexual favors, as she was driven “by an insatiable & an irrepressible passion,” and that she mainly lived by begging, supplemented by spinning flax.
After seventeen years of this lifestyle, she traveled to Jerusalem for the Great Feasts of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. She undertook the journey as a sort of “anti-pilgrimage,” stating that she hoped to find in the pilgrim crowds at Jerusalem even more partners in her lust. She paid for her passage by offering sexual favors to other pilgrims, & she continued her habitual lifestyle for a short time in Jerusalem. Her Vita relates that when she tried to enter the Church of the Holy Sepulchre for the celebration, she was barred from doing so by an unseen force. Realizing that this was because of her impurity, she was struck with remorse, & upon seeing an icon of the Theotokos (the Virgin Mary) outside the church, she prayed for forgiveness & promised to give up the world (i.e., become an ascetic). Then she attempted again to enter the church, & this time was permitted in. After venerating the relic of the true cross, she returned to the icon to give thanks, & heard a voice telling her, “If you cross the Jordan, you will find glorious rest.” She immediately went to the monastery of Saint John the Baptist on the bank of the River Jordan, where she received absolution & afterwards Holy Communion. The next morning, she crossed the Jordan & retired to the desert to live the rest of her life as a hermit in penitence. She took with her only three loaves of bread, & once they were gone, lived only on what she could find in the wilderness.
Approximately one year before her death, she recounted her life to Saint Zosimas of Palestine, who encountered her in the desert. When he unexpectedly met her in the desert, she was completely naked & almost unrecognizable as human. She asked Zosimas to toss her his mantle to cover herself with, & then she narrated her life’s story to him, manifesting marvellous clairvoyance. She asked him to meet her at the banks of the Jordan, on Holy Thursday of the following year, & bring her Holy Communion. When he fulfilled her wish, she crossed the river to get to him by walking on the surface of the water, & received Holy Communion, telling him to meet her again in the desert the following Lent. The next year, Zosimas travelled to the same spot where he first met her, some twenty days’ journey from his monastery, & found her lying there dead. According to an inscription written in the sand next to her head, she had died on the very night he had given her Communion & had been somehow miraculously transported to the place he found her, & her body was preserved incorrupt. He buried her body with the assistance of a passing lion. On returning to the monastery he related her life story to the brethren, & it was preserved among them as oral tradition until it was written down by St. Sophronius.
In Italy, this Mary became associated with the patronage of fallen women much like Mary Magdalene, to whom similar traits were associated.
Feast Day of Saints Agape, Chionia, & Irene (Greek: Αγάπη, Χιονία και Ειρήνη meaning Love, Purity, & Peace, born in Thessaloniki) 3 virgin sisters who, were martyred for their faith in the year 304 AD. The story of their martyrdom is the subject of Dulcitius, a 10th-century medieval Latin drama by the secular canoness, Hrotsvitha of Gandersheim, the first known female playwright.
1682 – Deathday of Rosamunde, Princess of Cyprus – There is a play by Helmina von Chézy, with music which Franz Schubert composed for it. The story concerns the attempt of Rosamunde, who was brought up incognito as a shepherdess by the mariner’s widow Axa, to reclaim her throne. The long-established governor Fulgentius , who already has Rosamunde’s parents on his conscience, attempts to thwart Rosamunde, initially by intrigue, then by a marriage proposal & finally by an attempt at poisoning. Rosamunde, whose claim is backed by a deed in her father’s hand, enjoys the support of Cypriots & the Cretan Prince Alfonso, her intended husband. Finally, all the attempts of Fulgentius fail; he dies by his own poison, & Rosamunde ascends the throne.
1895 – The trial in the libel case brought by Oscar Wilde begins, eventually resulting in his imprisonment on charges of homosexuality
1897 – Death day of Johannes Brahms, German pianist & composer
1922 – Joseph Stalin becomes the first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
*1925 – The Cremation of Rudolf Steiner at the Horburg cemetery in Basel
1968 – Martin Luther King Jr. delivers his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech. He was assassinated the next day
POD (Poem Of the Day)
The perfume of morning
Sharp as I carry the egg of light home
A simple flower unfurling
Slowly after a night of anguish
I sway under a fragmented sky thinking how
Star patterns & Moon-magic pulse within me…
Unseen music follows…
Shared by Patricia Kaminski. Compiled by Eva Lohmann-Heck
*The following moving descriptions of experiences and observations from the time of Rudolf Steiner’s taking leave of the earth are taken from an article by Werner Schäfer, whose selections we reprint here with his kind permission. They may speak for themselves without further commentary and serve to create a unifying mood for all those who would like to commemorate Rudolf Steiner’s being and work on the 94th anniversary of his death.
Ilona Schubert summarized in the following words what certainly corresponded to the experience of many people at that time when they said goodbye to Rudolf Steiner, whose body was laid out in the studio:
“Silence weaved in the room. In deep sorrow, but also with infinite gratitude and love in their hearts, those present raised their thoughts to their great leader and teacher. The next morning – on the 3rd of April, the historical Good Friday – was the cremation, which was celebrated by Dr. Rittelmeyer with the ritual of the Christian Community, in the old crematorium in Basel. An immense crowd had arrived, and the small abdication hall could not accommodate them all. So the majority stood outside in the open air. I, too, was among them and could only follow the celebration from a distance. But it was no less a deep experience. Bright blue skies and bright sunshine, singing birds in the newly awakened world of spring – it was a magical Good Friday atmosphere like in Wagner’s “Parzival,” which united all of the people, inside and outside, and unified them in the consciousness that they have now given the final guiding direction to the one who is among the greatest spirits of mankind and whose work on earth they had been allowed to witness.”
The following report by Dr. Heinrich Hardt comes from the cremation of Rudolf Steiner’s body in Basel on April 3, 1925 (from “Mitteilungen aus der anthroposophischen Arbeit in Deutschland,” Easter 1950):
“It was a cloudless, radiant spring sky under which the immense crowd gathered around the Basel Crematorium, which was full of people inside. Stuten’s music had faded away, and Albert Steffen’s speech was audible in fragments to us who were standing in the open air. Deep sorrow ran through me over the decease of the beloved teacher, and still another particular sorrow over the imminent departure of his precious earthly form, his spirit-imbued head, his grace-filled starry brow. All this was now to be handed over to the elements. – Warm memories of his indications and revelations, which are intimately connected to all of nature – the plants, the animals, the elemental beings – pervaded my soul, and despite all the dignity and beauty which had been bestowed upon the whole happening by human hearts and hands, I somehow felt: it could not be otherwise than that Nature herself, who is not compliant to us human beings, expressed her own participation in this hour. The nature beings themselves, who are fraternally familiar to our spiritual teacher – yes, they must, they will show their participation, simply their visible presence; otherwise, this unique, at the same time so painful and yet so sublime hour would remain incomplete. – At the gable of the grey crematorium one could see the shape of a large antique vase, and I looked toward it with a searching, expectant gaze: When and where does the large, beautiful bird come from, which sits on it, ignoring the closeness of so many people and thus proving that its presence is not accidental? – But the vase remained as it was. – There – it may have been two or three minutes later – quiet seagull cries and a very gentle roar caused me to look up at the sky. What did I see? – Exactly vertically above the crematorium, at a height of about 40 meters, stood a structure like a living crown. It was comprised of about 22 to 24 seagulls. Their flight was cheerful and lively. In front of the bright blue sky, their plumage sparkled silver and, on their breasts, gold. An indescribable triad of colours! From time to time, individual birds swung through the circle in half-lemniscate form and arranged themselves in a new order. The whole crowning wreath, this crown crowning everything as if held by the hands of gods, remained in exactly the same place for minutes. I nudged my friend on the right, and we looked up for a long time, deeply moved. A look at the others standing nearby showed us that, unfortunately, probably no one but us looked up. One felt impelled to call out, to nudge others, to draw their attention – we were, after all, still so young! – but the thought of creating a disturbance through such actions made us remain silent. – Only very gradually did the wedding flight – as the ornithologists call such an event – slowly float away, preserving its circle, backwards to the right as seen from our perspective. But just then, the open sun flashed forth! Our eyes were forced to close as the feathered, livingly moving high crown approached all too near with its radiant attire. – Most inwardly shaken by the beauty of this freely given, deeply touching event, we then left the site with the others, looked into the silently flowing Rhine, and thanked those birds as if out of secret solidarity for their indescribable encircling round.”
The following is taken from “Astronomy and Anthroposophy” (1930) by Elisabeth Vreede. It describes a newly shining star on star atlases and globes, called “Nova 1925.” (See also Rudolf Steiner’s lectures of June 4, 1924 [GA 236] and July 6, 1924 [GA 237].)
“Most strange was the developmental process of [a Nova], which was illuminated to a strongly visible brightness, and which was first seen on May 25, 1925. It appeared in a constellation of the southern hemisphere, which bears the name “the easel of the painter.” (The star is therefore called: Nova Pictoris.) It thus has a position that is entirely unique in the chronicle of the Novae, because these usually appear in or near the Milky Way, while this star is rather near the southern ecliptic pole. Since the star-rich southern sky is not observed as continuously as the northern one, the appearance of the star could go unnoticed for a long time. In any case, one later discovered that it figured on older photo plates as a star of size 13, and that it was already a star of size 3 on April 13th, 1925 – in other words, it had already become clearly visible, such that, in contrast to the aforementioned stars, it had a very slow increase and perhaps entered into the range of visibility at the beginning of April. On June 9th of the same year, it was almost a star of size 1; then it slowly decreased again to a star of size 9.” (The new star may therefore have appeared immediately, or three days after, Rudolf Steiner’s death…
“In January 1926, it was seen surrounded by a strongly reddish aureole, like a solar protuberance. In March 1928, it suddenly appeared as a double star; it had split – a phenomenon unknown to new stars up until now, such that even astronomers of the northern hemisphere at first did not at all want to believe their colleagues from the southern hemisphere who had observed it. Then, one spoke much of unexpected world catastrophes and reminded of the fable of the frog, which wanted to inflate itself to the ox and then burst – by assuming, on the basis of the spectrum, that the star had not actually become hot, and that its enormous increase in brightness (50,000 times, after a calculation) could be attributed only to an actual surface enlargement, which had become the undoing of the star. But we do not need to be confused by these materialistic explanations. – At the same time, the star surrounded itself with nebulae, as also occurs otherwise, so that for a while it offered the spectacle of two red stars, surrounded by a veil of nebulae. Soon thereafter, it even split again, and there were four stars, one brighter in the middle, three smaller ones all around, all of whitish color and immersed in a rosy nebula. According to the relatively few astronomers who could observe it, it was a wonderful spectacle. Then rings formed around the individual stars. Over time, the individual parts moved even further apart.” (Does this apparition not bring to mind the scene arrangement in the Mystery Dramas for the three soul forces, where the central forms of “Maria, Philia, Astrid, Luna appear in a glowing cloud of light”?
The following observation by Annemarie Dubach-Donath, one of the first Eurythmists, comes from nature during springtime. She later calls to mind Rudolf Steiner’s “Butterfly Cycle” (1923, GA 230), as she brings together Rudolf Steiner’s death with the content of these lectures:
“They were unspeakably beautiful, blooming spring days in which this holy death was received by the earth. And in the following summer months, white butterflies flew in flocks such as I had never seen during any summer before or after in the Dornach meadows and grounds. This sight reminded us again and again of the glorious words Rudolf Steiner had spoken a year-and-a-half earlier in the 1923 autumn lectures about butterflies, the colourfully shimmering messengers of the spiritual world. With nostalgic wonder, we looked at the delicate miracle; at times, a distant, spiritual smile seemed to shine out from it.”
Epilogue by Marie Steiner in “The Course of my Life” by Rudolf Steiner:
“His life, consecrated wholly to the sacrificial service of humanity, was requited with unspeakable hostility; his path of knowledge was transformed into a path of thorns. But he walked the whole way, and mastered it for all humanity. He broke through the limits of knowledge; they are no longer there. Before us lies this path of knowledge in the crystal clarity of thoughts of which this book itself affords evidence. He raised the human intellect up to the spirit, permeated and united it with the spiritual Being of the cosmos. In this he achieved the greatest human deed. The greatest divine deed he taught us to understand; the greatest human deed he achieved. How could he escape being hated with all the demonic power of which Hell is capable? But he repaid with love the lack of understanding with which he was confronted.
He died – a Sufferer, a Leader, an Achiever –
In such a world as trod him under foot,
Yet which to raise aloft his strength sufficed.
He lifted men; they hurled themselves against him,
They spewed forth hatred, blocked his forward way.
His work they shattered even as he wrought it.
They raged with venom and with flame,
And now with joy defile his memory: —
“So he is dead who led you into freedom,
To light, to consciousness, to comprehension
Of what is Godlike in the human soul,
To your own Ego, to the Christ.
Was this not criminal, this undertaking?
He did what once Prometheus expiated,
What gave to Socrates the poisoned cup –
The crime Barabbas wrought was not so vile –
A deed whose expiation is the cross:
He lived, himself, the future there before you.
“We demons cannot suffer such a thing.
We harry, hunt, pursue who dares such deeds,
With all those souls who give themselves to us,
With all those forces which obey our will.
For ours is the turning point of time
And ours this humanity which sickens,
Without its God, in weakness, vice, and error.
We never yield the booty we have won,
But tear to pieces him who dares such deeds.
” He dared – and, daring, he endured his fate—
In love, long-suffering, and tolerance
Of weak, incapable humanity,
Which ever all his work in peril set,
Which ever misconstrued his uttered word,
Which misinterpreted his kind forbearance,
And in their littleness knew not themselves,
Because his greatness was beyond their compass.
’Twas thus he bore us – we were out of breath
In following his stride, his very flight
Which ravished us away.
’Twas our weakness
That was the hindrance ever to his flight,
The lead that weighted down his forward footsteps….
Now he is free, an aid to Those on High,
‘Who take whatever hath been wrung from Earth
As safeguard of Their goal.
So now They greet The son of man who his creative power,
Unfolded thus to serve the Gods’ high will;
Who, for the age of hardened intellect,
And for the time of dead machinery,
Stamped clear the Spirit, called die Spirit forth….
They hindered him.
The Earth in shadow moves,
n cosmic space now see the shaping figures;
The Leader waits; the heavens part and open;
In joy and reverence stand the rangéd hosts.
But Earth is wrapped in gray enshrouding night.”
Dear Friends, May the veil between the worlds part to unite us in our thinking, feeling & willing with the spirit of Rudolf Steiner, a true initiate, & beloved teacher.
Dear friends – We have some exciting programs coming to our Branch starting this weekend:
Sat. 6 April, 7 pm – 9 pm
& Sun. 7 April, 1 pm – 4 pm
‘ANTHROPOSOPHICAL SOCIETY: WHAT AILS THEE!
with APO founder Fred Janney
Monday 8 April 2019: 7 pm – 9 pm
“The Poisoning of America.” with John Beck.
Saturday 6 April 2019,from 7-9 pm:
Personality and spiritual biographies of the original Vorstand members and group healing meditation.
Sunday 7 April 2019, from 1 pm – 4 pm:
Identifying your spiritual stream and recognizing its opposite stream with directions for bringing cohesion and direction for members on both sides of the threshold.
Contribution $25-$50 or pay what you can afford, ALL proceeds donated to APO.
For more info. contact Hazel Archer-Ginsberg
2019 marks the reinstatement of Ita Wegman and Elisabeth Vreede back into the General Anthroposophical Society after 84 years. This 12×7 combination is a very important number combination in microcosmic and macrocosmic dynamics. Their return from banishment is only a first step in healing the karma of our organization and embracing the ongoing leadership of Rudolf Steiner into the future. Long standing and exacerbating problems have ensued since the ouster of these two leading lights chosen esoterically by Rudolf Steiner.
It is essential and imperative in our time to reconcile and forge harmony with these and other members on both sides of the threshold so that anthroposophy can flourish.
Sergei Prokofieff through his research tells us that all the original Executive Council members were chosen representatives and archetypes of the different and divergent karmic streams that came together under the direction of Rudolf Steiner for the esoteric tasks required well into the future.
The birth and development of the New Mysteries that was initiated at the Christmas Conference at the end of 1923 called on the free and active participation of these individuals.
On many occasions Rudolf Steiner called on each member of the Anthroposophical Society to uncover and research the spirituals stream for which he/she came to earth. Then, in order to heal the individual and group karma of the General Anthroposophical Society, members were urged to reach out to members of conflicting spiritual streams, so as to find ways to harmonize the conflicts.
In our time, these steps in self and social development are essential as we seek future work together for the development of humanity.
References: May Human Beings Hear It (2004) by Sergei Prokofieff. Chapter Five: The Esoteric Archetype of the Original Council. https://www.rudolfsteiner.org/articles. Anthroposophical Society: What Ails Thee (2017) by Fred Janney
Fred Janney in 1999 joined with six other members of the Anthroposophical Society from around the country to start what soon became known as Anthroposophical Prison Outreach. We are celebrating twenty years of service to incarcerated individuals based on the good will and donations of our member.
Monday 8 April 2019: 7 pm – 9 pm
“The Poisoning of America.” Presentation by John Beck.
In 1936 President Franklin Roosevelt asserted that “This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.” Five years later he spoke of four freedoms—“everywhere in the world”—that were “no vision of a distant millennium” but “a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time…” But when the end of the world war left the USA as the richest and most powerful nation in the world’s history, two Americas emerged, an inner one where the respect for the individual continued to grow, and an outer one where a full-scale war on the Spirit of Truth, the Holy Spirit, has been unleashed, even as the technological basis is extended for the rulership of Satan, Ahriman, the “father of lies.” Now individuals must wake up to this challenging reality.
Suggested donations $15.
For more information contact Andrei Onegin at firstname.lastname@example.org
John Beck is editor of being human magazine and director of communications for the Anthroposophical Society in America (USA). He was general manager of the New York Open Center, a technology and communications officer at Chase Bank, and director of public broadcasting stations in Boston and New York City. Family history has led him to be aware of political life in the USA since childhood.