Greetings Friends – Before going out to Zinniker – The oldest Biodynamic Farm in America for our Michaelmas Farm Day experience today, I thought to share some thoughts that I hold of Joan d’Arc – a true Christic Warroior inspired by Michael. A few years back our Michaelmas Festival was inspired by Joan of Arc. I called it ‘PURIFYING FIRE: The Power behind the Will’.
My research led me to many amazing resources, including Mark Twain’s heart-felt Book, as well as the work of Anthroposopher Joan M. Edmunds. But my main source came from Rudolf Steiner who gives us many insights into this powerful individuality.
Now I can’t help but think of Joan when it comes to Michaelmas. And Yesterday while getting ready to serve at the Christian Community, my co-server came in wearing one of the red T-shirts with Joan’s likeness on it that everyone got who was involved with that Fest. (Thanks Mary & Deborah!) I had almost worn mine. I love these little clues that work thru to inspire us to take initiative.
I was particularly taken by what Steiner says in ‘The Destinies of Individuals and of Nations, Lecture 5, The Nature of the Christ Impulse and the Michaelic Sprit Serving It. Berlin, 1915’; a lecture series he gave right at the start of the 1st world war. I felt called to make that my personal focus. I didn’t get a chance to share it at our Festival since I wanted to keep it more experienical, so here it is for your contemplation. I hope it moves you to take action as it did me.
What is the mission of The Maid of Orleans?
From the time of her enchanted childhood playing around the village ‘fairy tree’ – & then, starting at the age of 12 – & for 7 years till she was martyred at age 19, Jehanne (feminine form of Joannes or John) d’Arc was inspired into by progressive Beings of the Divine Spiritual World. These powers battled the inflammatory Luciferic forces of deception prevailing in humanity at that special time right before the beginning of the Consciousness Soul Age.
Joan of Arc, with the aid of Michael, (& his helpers St. Catherine & St. Margaret) was able to vanquish the seductive Luciferic forces which were vying to prevent this shift in human consciousness.
Steiner describes the miracle of her birth, how she went thru a sort of pre-earthy initiation during the potent time of the 13 Holy nights, incarnating on Epiphany, the day the Christ came into a human being at the Baptism.
And we can also point to her equally auspicious death. Yes it was gruesome, not unlike like the sacrifice of the Christ. In her case, it occurred because all the jealous, selfish, Luciferic forces of her enemies joined together to bring about her sacrifice by fire; not unlike the burning of Ephesus & of the 1st Goetheanum.
At what can in truth be be called her witch trial, she predicted her own death, & said that within 7 years after of her sacrifice: “the English would meet with a much greater reversal of fortune than any they had known before”.
Spiritual Science tells us that the soul of Joan of Arc continued working across the Threshold to shape these events after her death.
What the spiritual powers have to bring about will occur whatever the external conditions may be.
Many great individualities are working with us even now from across the threshold.
The Maid’s adversaries were able to bring about her death, but they were NOT able to prevent her mission.
The power behind the will of the Maid of Orleans, the forces of Michael, are working still against the immoral Luciferic forces that rage in the world.
Dear friends, as you are all so keenly aware, we are also having to deal with hostile forces in our time; but now-a-days these are predominantly Ahrimanic forces; not inflaming, but hardening, materialistic forces, that have come up with the industrial age. These forces are in evidence everywhere, especially if we turn our attention not only to the mechanical element, but thru-out cyber space; a distractive shrouding of the reappearance of the Christ in the etheric.
And so Spiritual science tells us that if we remain unconscious of these forces working into our sense impressions, we are offering an abode to the dragon that seeks to stupefy us. These sclerotic forces influence our earth life, creating the fearful events happening NOW all over the globe.
~Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria
In the above mentioned 1917 lecture, Steiner talks about how a sort of denial of the build up to the 1st World War had been present for a long time in the astral world, but was held back by something that was also astral: by the fear, doubt & hatred held in the feeling life of human beings. These negative astral forces were able to hold the war back, to prevent it, for a while. Steiner says: “…at 1st a fearful denial was able to stop war from breaking out. But then with the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, there emerged a ‘reversal event’ – this recalls the words from Joan of Arc: “the English would meet with a much greater reversal than any they had known before”.
In that case the selfish Luciferic forces came back to destroy the English reign after the sacrifice of Joan of Arc; and in this case – of the world war, all the elements of fear from the ahrimanic powers began to gather around the sacrificed soul of the Archduke, creating a focal point, a tear at the threshold.
It’s hard to really phantom this, but we know that anything that has a specific character on the physical plane will have the opposite character in the spiritual world. Everything is reversed in the spiritual world.
An element that had a blocking effect, keeping the 1st world war at bay, was now acting in the opposite way, as a spur, an incitement, to war.
So we see that a flip of the elements of fear, of the deceiving Ahrimanic elements, became a catalyst for war, which now a 100 years later, has led to the events of our present age, where there is constant war, in all realms of society.
But fear not dear friends, Steiner tells us that we must not try to deny or rebel against these materialistic Ahrimanic elements. We must let them strengthen us; we must develop the courage of Michael to see it as something that is necessary in our time, something that has to be present, so that we can learn to reverse the fear thru our heart-thinking – transforming these forces of resistance thru love.
The question is: How do we make it possible for divine spiritual forces, the ‘ever present help of the spiritual world’, to enter into our actions so that we can consciously reverse The Beasts of fear, doubt & hatred?
How do we offer a positive resistance to this deceptive Ahrimanic element in our age, the way resistance was offered to the Luciferic element at the time of Joan of Arc?
– By taking the path towards a spiritualization of human culture – by cultivating our ability to form ideas & concepts into a thinking will for good. This is the prerequisite foundation needed to manifest the 3-fold social organism. Which we can only do if we stop listening to the prejudices & propaganda currently pounding us deeper into the materialism of our age – a voice that speaks loudly at times, or can be the faintest of whispers from the dragon within.
We generate the great strength we need to offer resistance to these hardening forces by approaching the spirit not only thru the inner powers of revelation & faith, like in the case of Joan of Arc, but by trying to concentrate our powers of understanding on what spiritual science has to give – a rational wisdom, filling us with light.
And so dear freinds, when we take ahold of ourselves with this attitude, we can consciously work with what Michael, the Spirit of our Age, has to give us now in our time – Meeting every trial & test with a conscious heart-thinking, motivated by the wisdom of love – where we must kindle our own light of thinking.
Here are some podcasts & video’s on the theme of Michaelmas:
Video – Michaelmas: Festival of the Future
Video: Michaelmas Musings
The Anthroposopher podcast – Preserve the Light
Video – The Central Regional Council – ‘Courage Born of Wisdom’
30 September 2023 – “Speaking with the Stars”: The waning gibbous Moon visits two celestial highlights of October’s late evenings.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
395 – John the Evangelist settles in Patmos to write the Apocalypse
420 – Deathday of St. Jerome also called Hieronymus, Roman priest, theologian, patron saint of translators, librarians & encyclopedists. Rudolf Steiner speaks of him in From Jesus to Christ lecture 4, saying he had to ‘falsify’ the Gospel of St. Matthew, because it was too esoteric for folks at the time:
When we know this, we understand that the original Gospel of Matthew could not be imparted without further preparation because men were not ripe to receive what was in it. For if Jerome, a Father of the Church, was himself not ripe for what it contained, then certainly other men were not. Those who were originally in possession of these communications, the Ebionites, did not impart them because, if received by unripe persons, they would have been so distorted that they must have led to what Jerome meant when he said that they would serve not for edification but for destruction. Now Jerome understood this; yet he allowed himself to impart in a certain way the Gospel of Matthew to the world. ~Rudolf Steiner
1207 – Birthday of Rumi, Persian mystic & poet
1791 – The first performance of The Magic Flute, the last opera by Mozart to make its debut, took place at Freihaus-Theater auf der Wieden in Vienna, Austria
1791 – The National Constituent Assembly in Paris is dissolved; Parisians hail Maximilien Robespierre & Jérôme Pétion as “incorruptible patriots”
1882 – Thomas Edison’s first commercial hydroelectric power plant (later known as Appleton Edison Light Company) begins operation on the Fox River in Appleton, Wisconsin
1914 – Birthday of Johannes Tautz – a Historian, Religious scholar, Anthroposophist, Author & Waldorf teacher. After the German capitulation, Tautz was imprisoned by the Czechs, Americans & Russians but managed to escape in the summer of 1945 back to his family in Bad Boll. He was soon approached by Erich Gabert in Stuttgart to join the Waldorf School that was about to be opened as its German & History teacher. On 1 November 1945 he stood before his first 9th grade at the Free Waldorf School, Uhlandshöhe.
Soon Johannes Tautz decided to look up his “predecessor”, the first history teacher at the Waldorf School, Walter Johannes Stein. The conversations with Stein provided an orientation & inspiration for all of his further work as a teacher, lecturer & writer; in his lecturing work at national & international conferences and in the “Hague Circle”, a coordinating international group of Waldorf teachers.
He likewise received particular guidance from Emil Bock regarding a Christological view of world history & from Jürgen von Grone about the destiny of Germany &in particular to the figure of Helmuth von Moltke.
In 1966 Tautz held three lectures about the spiritual background to National Socialism, which later appeared in print under the title Attack of the Enemy – The Occult Inspiration Behind Adolf Hitler and the Nazis in 1976. In it he looks at a number of personalities connected with questionable occult practices with which leading Nazis had been close during the time of the movement’s growth.
In 1979 he edited a collection of biographical portraits together with Gisbert Husemann of the circle of founding Waldorf teachers around Rudolf Steiner.
Together with a young friend, Thomas Meyer, he visited the daughter of Walter Johannes Stein, Clarissa Johanna Muller, in Ireland where she was living in order to look through her father’s literary estate. They found the typescript of Stein’s dissertation annotated by Rudolf Steiner, letters & meditations of Steiner for Stein, his mother & for his brother, who fell in a mysterious manner in WWI. Letters & notes of Ludwig Polzer-Hoditz, Eliza von Moltke, Ita Wegman, D.N Dunlop & many other personalities were discovered & formed the basis of Tautz’s biography of Stein in 1989
In 1993 he initiated the editing of a collection Rudolf Steiner’s letters & notes to Eliza von Moltke together with the post mortem communications & the letters of Helmuth von Moltke himself. The decision to publish these was to prevent or anticipate a partial publication without an appropriate commentary on the subject that had been announced. A previous instance of this content being used had been in the book The Spear of Destiny by Trevor Ravenscroft which, in the opinion of Tautz had been written “without the necessary protection of background knowledge for the deeply-penetrant & difficult to understand material.” Further reading
1938 – The League of Nations unanimously outlaws “intentional bombings of civilian populations”
1962 – Labor leader César Chávez founds the National Farm Workers Association, which later becomes United Farm Workers
1982 – Cyanide-laced Tylenol kills six people in the Chicago area. Seven are killed in all
1993 – The 6.2 Mw Latur earthquake shakes Maharashtra, India with a maximum Mercalli intensity of VIII (Severe) killing 9,748 & injuring 30,000
1999 – The Tokaimura nuclear accident causes the deaths of 2 technicians, many others affected by radiation poisoning, in Japan’s second-worst nuclear accident
2009 – The 7.6 Mw Sumatra earthquake shakes central Sumatra with a maximum Mercalli intensity of VIII (Severe). 1,115 people dead, many injured & left homeless
30 September 2023 – Our Annual Michaelmas Festival & Zinniker Farm Day – Biodynamic preparation making and Michaelmas 2023 – Food for Thought
The time for biodynamic preparation making is upon us. We will be making and burying the chamomile, yarrow and dandelion compost preparations. This offers hands on activity. We will be walking through grass and working in the soil. Please dress accordingly and be ready to get dirty.
After the potluck join Hazel Archer-Ginsberg in an experiential activity at the bon-fire called: Food for Thought –
Bounty: What spiritual gifts have you harvested in your life so far this year?
Farewells: What no longer serves? What is over? Say good-bye/ thank you.
Preserves: What will you keep as seed for the future?
Date: September 30th, 2023 at the Zinniker Farm
Time: 1:30pm, potluck dinner
Please bring a dish to share
Suggested donation: $15-25 for more info.