Nietzsche in the Light of Spiritual Science

Today the fear of hereditary predisposition penetrates humanity. If the human being opened himself or herself to the Christ impulse again, the illnesses would be overcome. On Golgotha, the symbol of death became the symbol of redemption. Being separated from that what one loves is suffering. However, one can be connected with those whom one loves if one is inspired by the Christ principle. One learns bit by bit to experience this union as reality. The Christ principle transforms the sufferings described by Buddha. Overcoming the sufferings one can reach not only by turning away from life, but also by the transformation of the soul. At the sight of the corpse of the crucified, we realise the riddle of the everlasting life going through death.

Nietzsche regards Christianity just as the opposite of that, what lies in its concealed deepness and what should be brought to light by spiritual science. He bleeds out because he could not recognise this. Nietzsche’s grief is the deepest, most painful longing for the sources of life. Because his spirit was not firmly tied to his physical body, he does not come to the right solution of the world riddles tormenting him. Thus, it could happen that he did not find the right answer to his question to life which spiritual science could have given him, that he passed by. When the tools of the physical body could no longer serve him, he cast it off, so to speak, he divests himself of the physical body that has become useless for the thinker, and he hovers over it as it were. Thus, he appears to the viewer looking at him as healthy, as someone who only wants to rest from intensive work of thought. In such a way, he lay there like a picture of the tragedy of modern materialistic science, which cannot recognise the spiritual.

Rudolf Steiner “Where/How/Spirit: Lecture XV: Nietzsche in the Light of Spiritual Science (Berlin, 20th March, 1909)”



What Are You Doing with Your Life?

2-3-5 Renewal Lies between Thoughts
The difficulty is for the mind to be still; for the mind is always worried, it is always after something, acquiring or denying, searching and finding. The mind is never still, it is in continuous movement. The past, overshadowing the present, makes its own future. It is a movement in time, and there is hardly ever an interval between thoughts. One thought follows another without pause; the mind is ever making itself sharp and so wearing itself out. If a pencil is being sharpened all the time, soon there will be nothing left of it; similarly, the mind uses itself constantly and is exhausted. The mind is always afraid of coming to an end. But, living is ending from day to day; it is the dying to all acquisition, to memories, to experiences, to the past.
from Jiddu Krishnamurti “What Are You Doing with Your Life?” (Krishnamurti Foundation of America)



Arise Awake

Never mind failures; they are quite natural, they are the beauty of life – these failures.  What would life be without them?  It would not be worth having if it were not for struggles.  Where would be the poetry of life?  Never mind the struggles, the mistakes.  I never heard a cow tell lie, but it is only cow – never mind these failures, these little backslidings; hold the ideal a thousand times and if you fail a thousand times, make the attempt once more.

from “Arise Awake Messages of Swami Vivekananda”



The Savage Mind

Bergson dis­cerned the importance of the part which, in view of its logical struc­ture, the notion of species was to play in the critique of totemism. But there is every reason to fear that, had he been forced to make his analysis more specific, he would have restricted it to the sub­jective and practical aspect of the relation between man and the natural world, of the kind exemplified by someone asking what there is for lunch today and being wholly satisfied with the answer ‘veal’. In fact the importance of the notion of species is to be explained not so much by a propensity on the part of the practising agent to dissolve it into a genus for biological and utilitarian reasons (which would amount to extending to man the famous dictum that it is grass in general which attracts the herbivore) as by its pre­sumptive objectivity : the diversity of species furnishes man with the most intuitive picture at his disposal and constitutes the most direct manifestation he can perceive of the ultimate discontinuity of reality. It is the sensible expression of an objective coding.

from Claude Lévi-Strauss “The Savage Mind”



The Two Sources of Morality and Religion

An indifferent schoolmaster, mechanically teaching a science created by men of genius, may awaken in one of his pupils the vocation he himself has never possessed, and change him unconsciously into an emulator of those great men, who are invisible and present in the message he is handing on.

from Henri Bergson “The Two Sources of Morality and Religion”



Beyond Good and Evil

217.  Let us be careful in dealing with those who attach great importance to being credited with moral tact and subtlety in moral discernment!  They never forgive us if they have once made a mistake before us (or even with regard to us) – they inevitably become our instinctive calumniators and detractors, even when they still remain our “friends.” – Blessed are the forgetful: for they “get the better” even of their blunders.

from Friedrich Nietzsche “Beyond Good and Evil (Translated by Helen Zimmern)”