American Philosophy and Rudolf Steiner: Emerson, Thoreau, by Robert McDermott

By Robert McDermott

"Few thinkers from outdoor the USA have touched American tradition in as some ways as Rudolf Steiner. Agriculture, schooling, spirituality, and medicine-or extra accurately, substitute practices in those fields-all undergo transparent marks of his impact, for people with eyes to determine. but the very breadth of Steiner's influence has possibly made him more durable, no longer more straightforward, for observers of yankee tradition to note. The phrases Waldorf schooling and biodynamic agriculture are extra well known than Rudolf Steiner himself or Anthroposophy. Anthroposophic tasks are mostly understood in terms of parallel tasks with diversified religious roots, instead of relating to the wealthy textile of Steiner's worldview. americans as a rule think biodynamic agriculture as a extra severe kind of organics and Waldorf colleges as "like Montessori colleges in basic terms extra so." whilst I describe the Camphill move, such a lot interlocutors reply with "Is that just like the L'arche movement?" And hundreds of thousands of customers at overall healthiness meals cooperatives and entire meals supermarkets buy Weleda pores and skin lotion, diaper cream, or homeopathic treatments with little experience of connection to Steiner's imaginative and prescient of spirit lively within the world." -Dan McKanan (from the foreword) American Philosophy and Rudolf Steiner aspires to elevate Steiner's profile through digging into only one box of inquiry: philosophy. earlier than he turned identified to the area as a transmitter of clairvoyant knowledge, Steiner used to be an educational thinker, editor of the medical writings of Goethe and writer of a foundational paintings in philosophy, The Philosophy of Freedom: the foundation for a latest Worldview, released in 1894. That ebook expressed in philosophical phrases the various principles that may later grow to be quintessential to the non secular technology of Anthroposophy. although the authors conceal quite a lot of issues, so much proportion an elegiac tone. They see nice capability for discussion among Rudolf Steiner and the nice American philosophers of the 19th and early 20th centuries. American philosophy can have taken a improper flip within the mid-twentieth century, while pragmatism gave option to a practice of analytical philosophy that eschewed metaphysics as inherently meaningless and excited by the coherence or incoherence of linguistic buildings. still, many new websites of strength discussion exist among Steiner and American philosophy. 5 of the articles during this quantity have been written as a part of a seminar on Rudolf Steiner and American inspiration as a part of a undertaking for the Renewal of Philosophy, technology, and schooling subsidized by way of Laurance S. Rockefeller. the various contributions have been initially released in ReVision: A magazine of recognition and Transformation (spring and summer time 1991).

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Extra info for American Philosophy and Rudolf Steiner: Emerson, Thoreau, Peirce, James, Royce, Dewey, Whitehead, Feminism

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It survives now only as caricature of itself in the consumerist culture that America exports by marketing to adolescents of all ages fads of every kind—sex, sneakers, celebrities, phobias. The rampant, impoverished American culture at home and worldwide reveals a mistake, but not a failure. The mistake happened when a sense of entitlement to physical comfort, ease, and security corrupted the original idealism in America. At its best the American dream is a vision of evolving soul capacities that can and will belong to human beings anywhere in the world who can summon the strength to desire and claim them.

McDermott All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the publisher. BOOK & COVER DESIGN: WILLIAM JENS JENSEN LIBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOGING-IN-PUBLICATION DATA American philosophy and Rudolf Steiner : Emerson, Thoreau, Peirce, James, Royce, Dewey, Whitehead, feminism / edited by Robert McDermott.

For both men, an abiding focus on spirit as source of all realities, including material ones, forms the foundation of their work. Immersed in questions of whence and whither, their speeches and writings aim to engage their audiences in those mysteries. Emerson is performing, through language, his inner life of thought, feeling, and desire, while Steiner offers his audiences representative thoughts he selects from his vast contemplative inquiry—his meditative research—so that the thought he chooses ripens in his readers, preparing them to experience for themselves how a subtle but real presence of spirit lives in their own inner being.

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