What’s on the Table?

Yep, we need a holy day to remember to Give Thanks. Gratitude is more than just a hallmark catchphrase. It’s a way of life; an attitude, a habit that we have to train ourselves to practice so we can build up our appreciation like a muscle. And what I’m finding is that it may actually change the perception of my well-being.

Our family’s tradition is to go to China Town for our Thanksgiving meal, since I always make a big homemade feast for our daughter’s birthday earlier that same week. When our girl was younger we would invite her whole Waldorf class over for Sukkoth & that was our community Thanksgiving. This year we went to meet some old friends who have also taken up this tradition. On the way to the restaurant I tumbled off the curb & rolled my bad ankle – my foot is swollen to high heaven. I had to sit there on the ground for a bit with the dizzying pain like the wrath of shooting stars catching my breath…dang…What’s that all about…?

When I’m feeling overwhelmed by my various health issues, compounded by the current world situation with all the vicissitudes it has brought to our sense of reality, I have to just take a breath & thank my lucky stars that I can apply Spiritual Science to my heart-thinking. And I remember that this is the ultimate testing ground, where we all agreed to meet. Our ‘truth or dare’ stage where discernment, equanimity, love, reverence/wonder, hope, & the power of peace must come into play.

I know sometimes it feels like we are hell-bent on heading straight into the abyss – I often find myself staring straight into the dragon’s eye – & it’s all too easy to get freaked out & discouraged – to spiral into the negative, cynical scenarios.

Naming the shadow has its time & place, but if it pulls us too deep into discord or depression, this shrinks our heart-health, bringing more inflammation & a weaker immune system – eclipsing the veracity of our collective power which we can access with every positive, thanks-giving, visualization.  So how can I turn this pain & forced slowdown into a gratitude moment…Well, I will have to work that thru won’t I…?

I have a chance to apply gratitude like medicine – a tonic & remedy for everything that ails me. It’s the gift that keeps on giving. An opportunity to let go of the personal pain to see it as a reflection of the pain of the world.

Together we set the table for a feast of healing.

See you there


26 November 2021 – “Speaking with the Stars”: The last-quarter Moon rises in Leo around 10 pm CT Tonight. By dawn on Saturday the 27th it’s high in the south below Leo’s belly

Dear friends – Please Join Us as move toward the Winter Festival Season:

Thursday 23 December 2021 – The Eve of the Eve –
11 am PT / 12 pm MT / 1 pm CT / 2 pm ET / 7 pm UTC

A Christmas Festival with Heart-Opening Movement by Lucien Dante Lazar
& a talk by our Christian Community Priest Rev. Jeana Lee

‘Divine Love and the Holy Child Within’

This will be a hybrid in-person & Zoom event
Featuring our 2 camera technology with Mary Spalding

Doors open at 12:30 pm (Zoom Room open 12:45 pm for Social time)
Snacks to Share Encouraged

Suggested donation $15.00
cash payment at the door or via the Rudolf Steiner Branch PayPal donation site –

*Please make a note on the first line – type in: “Christmas Fest”!
The Festival will be recorded

Time: Dec 23, 2021 01:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 705 293 1041
Passcode: Christmas

For more info. Contact Cultural Events & Festivals Coordinator
Hazel Archer-Ginsberg 

The Epic of Gilgamesh
Storytelling during the Holy Nights 2021-2022
Hosted by the Anthroposophical Society in America 

”The purpose of a story is to be an ax that breaks up the ice within us.”
~ Franz Kafka

Click to Register! 

All around the world the season of midwinter is the traditional time for community bonding through storytelling. In laying the groundwork for the 100-year anniversary of the Christmas Conferencewe bring the ancient Sumerian saga “The Epic of Gilgamesh” to life. Rudolf Steiner explored this story in Occult History during the Holy Nights of 1910; and again with the lectures “World History in the Light of Anthroposophy” given during those fateful Holy Nights in 1923 for the re-founding of the Society. 

The Epic of Gilgamesh is perhaps the oldest written tale on Earth. The Sumerian version dates from around 3000 B.C. Later it was compiled from 12 clay tablets written in Akkadian cuneiform. 

It is the “Hero’s Journey” of human evolution, a story of friendship, and a quest for the meaning of life – revealing Steiner’s core mission of bringing karma and reincarnation to the west. 

Myths, fairytales, historical epics, and sagas open us up to powerful archetypes behind the human condition, revealing clues to ourselves – from the past, the present, and the future. What will we uncover about ourselves and each other during this year’s Holy Nights adventure in storytelling?

Tune in for any or all of the episodes of this dramatic reading, re-worked by Hazel Archer from various translations, and featuring friends from around the world.

WhatThe Epic of Gilgamesh: Story Telling during the Holy Nights hosted by the ASA, Hazel Archer, and friends.

Time: 22 minutes daily at 9 am PT / 10 am MT / 11 am CT / 12 pm ET / 5 pm UTC

Dates:  December 24, 2021- January 5, 2022 for 13 consecutive days  
Can’t join us live? No problem. Each gathering will be recorded and posted on our Holy Nights page (link will be emailed upon registration).

HowRegister Here!  Then check your email for confirmation with the Zoom registration link. 

Cost: This event is free with suggested donations of $25, $50, $100
Your donations help us create events like this one!
Register Here! 

Eurythmy for the Holy Nights with Jan Ranck
‘Tuning to the Stars’:
Sacred Geometry, the Planets and the Zodiac

LIVE IN-PERSON 26-30 Dec. 2021
at the Rudolf Steiner Branch Chicago 4 pm – 5 pm
And at 7pm on 31 Dec. as part of our Annual NYE Gathering (details below)

$100 for all 6 sessions, or $22 for each individual session.

Make your payment using the Rudolf Steiner Branch PayPal
or QuickPay with Zelle to chase@rschicago.org
(Please indicate in the notes that it is for the “Holy Nights Eurythmy”)

Cash at the door, or send a check to:
Rudolf Steiner Branch
4249 North Lincoln Avenue
Chicago, IL 60618-2953

For more info. Contact Cultural Events & Festivals Coordinator
Hazel Archer-Ginsberg 

* Jan Ranck – Born in the USA, Jan Ranck studied music and comparative arts at Indiana University in Bloomington. She accompanied the London Stage Group on their 1976 USA tour and went on to study eurythmy at the Eurythmeum in Dornach with Lea van der Pals, where she subsequently taught. In 1984 she joined the faculty of The London School of Eurythmy. She left there to complete her eurythmy therapy training in Stuttgart in 1989, moving afterward to Israel, where she founded and directed the Jerusalem Eurythmy Ensemble (1990) and the Jerusalem Academy of Eurythmy (1992) and was an instructor in the Jerusalem Waldorf Teacher Bachelor Program in David Yellin Academic College from 1999. Jan has held Master Classes at various venues worldwide, including the Goetheanum and the MA Program in Eurythmy held at Emerson College and Spring Valley. She is the representative for Israel in the International Eurythmy Therapy Forum.

Friday 31 December 2021
Doors open at 6:30 pm 

Join us for our Annual NYE Conscious Community Gathering –
The Theme for 2022 is Cabaret – a Cultural Sharing!

All are invited to take the stage with an offering.

Circles Edge & other Waldorf alum will also perform

Please bring Festival Food & Drink to share

$20 Cash at the door or Make your payment using the Rudolf Steiner Branch PayPal or QuickPay with Zelle to chase@rschicago.org
(Please indicate in the notes that it is for the “NYE”)

All proceeds go to support the Rudolf Steiner Branch – the young People hosting & The Band (Can’t make it? Send a $ gift PayPal)

7 – 8 pm – Eurythmy with Jan Ranck (separate fee $22 see above)

8 pm – Potluck Social

8:30 pm – Circles Edge & Friends warm the stage & host the open mic

10:10 pm – Thought-Seed Circle

10:30 pm – Clean-up…;)

For more info. Contact Cultural Events & Festivals Coordinator
Hazel Archer-Ginsberg 

Tuesday 4 January 2022 – (Zoom Details TBA) 
11 am PT / 12 pm MT / 1 pm CT / 2 pm ET / 7 pm UTC

a talk with Christian Community Priest & Lenker for North America
Rev. Craig Wiggins: ‘From Bethlehem to Golgotha: Birthing the Christ within at Epiphany’

6 thoughts on “What’s on the Table?

  1. I like your expression about setting the table for a feast of healing. There’s a lot of healing that needs to take place – spiritually, mentally and physically. Cultural healing as well.

    I don’t know the story with your ankle, but I just finished reading Albert Soesman’s first lecture from his book, Our Twelve Senses. He gives many good insights into pain; here’s just one of them: “And in anthroposophy the authority who – to express it rather crudely – has perfect knowledge of the body, is called spirit man, in contrast to ‘physical man’. This is simply a term to indicate where the power comes from that is able to give us all these warnings.” (pg. 24 in my book). This very high being is letting you know that something’s not right, or is out of harmony. Really enjoying Soesman’s insights into our senses; as an embryologist, he brings much wisdom to Steiner’s teachings on these gifts we’ve been given.

    1. Yes, interesting perspective that reminds how I often see my future self giving clues to my present self…
      And I also agree whenever we have ‘accidents’ especially injuries to our lower limbs it’s a question of grounding.
      Often when we don’t get the more subtle clues we have to get that slap to wake us up to make the changes we need to go forward in a healthy way to meet that ‘Spirit Man’ that we will become…

      1. Going to Chinatown for a turkey dinner is expressed somewhere else, it seems in my mind. It might have been at Christmas rather than Thanksgiving but the vestige is the same in terms of moments of self-realization. Hazel, your accident is likely due to the fact that you seem to be someone who is deeply in their head all the time, and this can cause missteps in the moment. As someone who has engaged the 10:10 thought experiment for many years now, I personally know what it means to transfer head matter to the heart. This seems to arise upon waking in the morning. At least, this is my experience. I live with my daughter, and she is a light unto my life, like your own. These are connections I try to make with you in my mind. Thanks for the Thanksgiving thoughts.

        1. No turkeys were consumed in the giving of thanks,
          & yes sometimes we also go for Szechuan string beans on Christmas Day too
          (although the last few years it’s to little India that we dine)
          I do enjoy these non-traditional traditions…

          Yep, guilty as charged, the being too up in the head…
          I am always willing to take these bumps as wake up calls, & so I guess I am due to peel away another layer…

          I think about heart-thinking a lot.

          When I was a young woman I was living solely in my feeling life which was very hard being so overly sensitive (but perhaps that was because I was stuck in the astral) It’s interesting that when I first came to Anthroposophy all I met was intellectuals, stuck in the rule of the law, which I promptly bumped up against with my emotionalism. Now after years of striving to be conscious of said astraly driven feeling, I have come to be sensitive to what I judge as people in many Anthro groups these days, as being too sappy…All that gushing seems very self indulgent & besides the point. So as always its about balance for me…

          May we always be connected in the warmth & the light…

          1. Hazel, please watch over that judgment facility. A turkey can also be a roasted duck, or even a string noodle. Mine was Lasagna built by my darling daughter. Thanks for the revealing of yourself. I am beginning to think I can count on you as being someone in your camp. The revelation from earlier years is awesome. Someone said something about Dion Fortune but I haven’t gotten that far. Kind regards.

            1. No judgement, just facts, I love a good turkey dinner it’s just not on my table at Thanksgiving.
              I grew up with the Italian side of the family & we has Lasagna too or sometimes tortellini soup along with all the other more traditional fixings…
              Yes Dion Fortune was the inspiration for the 10:10 Thought-Seed.

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