Friday 30 October 2020

The anti-spiritual war of all against all: A brief, and fulfilled, Rudolf Steiner prophecy from 1919

Edited from a lecture by Rudolf Steiner at Bern, Switzerland - 4th November 1919 concerning the influences of Lucifer and Ahriman.

The phase of evolution beginning in our own time has a very special character. The present phase may be characterized in a general way by saying that all the experiences confronting humankind in the physical world during the earth's further existence will represent a decline, a retrogression. 

The time when human progress was made possible through the constant refinement of the physical forces is already over. In the future, too, humankind will progress, but only through spiritual development, through development on a higher level than that of the processes of the physical plane. 

People who rely entirely on the processes of the physical plane will find in them no source of satisfaction

We are heading for the “War of All against All”; its implications must not remain in the realm of theory but also come to expression in the actions, the whole behavior of human beings. 

The fact that people in the future are not going to get much fun out of developments on the physical plane, will bring home to them that further evolution must proceed from spiritual forces.


Comment: A hundred years later and we can see that Steiner was absolutely correct. Four generations of (mostly) development in the refinement of physical forces, clearly has Not brought about human progress. 

(Indeed the prevalent - and explicit - idea among the (demonically-driven) Global Establishment is trans-humanism, transcending the human; the abolition - and eventual genocide - of all humans, and their replacement with 'cyborg' human-computer hybrids. Why not? Does Satan care for humans?)

And the war of all against all has advanced so rapidly in recent years - and with unprecedented swiftness in 2020 - that implementing exactly such a Life has become the main plank of global public policy with barely any recognition and even less murmer of disconent that this should be. 

(Disguised merely by the flimsiest and least coherent of Big Lies, blatant fakery, and terrible consequences evident in the personal experience of every single individual on the planet.) 

Steiner knew and prophesied that the immediate post-1914-18 world war was the last chance for the dominant Western world to change its trajectory; but instead materialism/ reeductionism/ positivism was embraced and enforced with teh promise of a life without suffering and of greatly enhanced 'fun' - as was evident in the Roaing Twenties and the Swingin Sixties. 

Yet the underlying reality of the 20th century was unprecedented world was and atheist socialist/ communist (anti-Christian) regimes of staggering human destructiveness. And the self-destruction of The West primarily by increasing value-inversion with sub-fertility, and deliberate strategy social and suicide - which seems to have reached a decisive climax. 

Rudolf Steiner's great strength is not his analysis of distaster - but his pointing forwards towards The necessary, fundamental and potentially effective (Christian and spiritual) solution; which is why (for all his many faults) he remains one of very few genuinely vital thinkers of the past couple of centuries. 


Nathan said...

Great post and comment Bruce! Timely.

In your view, what would you say Spirit is,
and what are the experiential effects of it?

Francis Berger said...

This aligns with my own understanding of the ultimate spiritual 'wrong turn' the West took at the beginning of the twentieth century with the commencement of the First World War, but unlike Steiner, I have had the benefit of hindsight to reach this conclusion. To understand and recognize the spiritual 'wrong turn' in real time emphasizes the clarity of Steiner's prescience here.

It's been said a thousand time before, but it bears repeating - our collective inability/unwillingness to recognize the inherent evil of socialism/communism ranks among our greatest spiritual failures.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Frank - Couldn't agree more! Especially in Britain.

@ Nathan - I think The Spirit/ Spiritual - is best defined as Everything - and therefore not just 'the material'. In other words, our world thinks that the really-real is only that which is observable (or - detectable / measurable by the instruments and assumptions of Establishment-approved 'science'). The theory of materialism is also called positivism, reductionalism and (more pejoratively) scientism. It is an incoherent theory, which cannot account for itself, so I cannot be much more precise.

The deepest understanding I have encountered is Owen Barfield's 'Saving the Appearances' - but another way to think of the spirit is to consider all that the mainstream modern world of public discourse excludes from considering as 'evidence', or admissable for consideration.

At root the matter is about metaphysical assumptions. Many spiritual things are excluded by assumption, then regarded as having been disproven by 'science'. For example, God, miracles, the soul, free will, telepathy, continued existence after biological death, revelation...

Daniel said...

Is Rudolf Steiner ever specific about when will this War occur? He says something about, if i remember correctly, humanity being confronted with a choice at the end of the 20th century: spirituality or materialism.
Looking at how things are going it seems humanity chose the latter.
Is it reasonable to assume the War of All agains All is upon us?!

Bruce Charlton said...

@Daniel - It partly depends how we read Steiner, especially in his prophetic mode; and whether these are considered individual (more, or less, inspired utterances).

Are these utterances the kind of thing that can be cross-referenced and systematized between different times and places where they were spoken? Or should we take each by itself? Are they supposed to be 100% correct, or is there an element of approximation, and mixture of genuinely-inspired with error?

But you are (apparently) correct about the millennium as a watershed - i.e. from what I know of Steiner which - although a lot - is a small fraction of what he produced!

Terry Boardman infers (from a vast knowledge of Steiner) that Ahriman was supposed to be incarnated close to the millennium, and would therefore now be about 22 years old - and (if this idea of A.'s incarnation is true, which I personally do Not believe) the presence of Ahriman would certainly be expected make an overt spiritual war.

I am most impressed by Steiner's 1918 Zurich prophecy - - which also dates the inflexion point to the millennium - but mainly because of the accumulation of spiritual error leading, by that time, to a breakdown and inversion of values.

Daniel said...

@Bruce Charlton Perhaps what Rudolf Steiner meant was not that Ahriman would incarnate onto an individual specific man, but if rather the individual, i.e. each one of us, would incarnate 'it'.

This is a time of deep mental confusion. It seems that people cannot even distinguish cause from consequence let alone understand that cause and consequence have a relationship of reciprocity.
''God laughs at those who lament the consequences while at the same time cherish the causes.'' - Jacques BĂ©nigne Bossuet

Rudolf Steiner also talks about a 'spiritual sundering' (my words, not Steiner's) of humanity where communication between one part and another would become impossible. And indeed i see the resistance, even hostility, of a lot of people to anything that may sound to come from outside of the materialistic mode of reality. Just by quoting Spinoza, Jung or a mere allusion to the New Testament and i get vilified, demonised, silenced.

This impossibility of communication doesn't come from talking a different languange but from the fact that we inhabit different inner worlds, which, in turn, determines our relationship with the Universe.
This new faith in 'science' is in the process of becoming more obscurantist, despotic and obtuse than religion ever was (the word 'creed' would be more suitable than 'religion' in this case, since creed gives, in the words of Jung, expression to definite collective belief, whereas the word religion expresses a subjective relationship with the devine).

Materialism is a dead end and, ultimately, complete rubbish. The de-christianisation of Europe is a calamity, and now nothing can stand as counterpower to the the all powerfull and ubiquitous State, in other words, the ahrimanic forces.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Daniel - Good comment.

That quote from Bossuet is just right.

I think Steiner meant that Ahriman would incarnate as a specific man - which I personally don't believe, partly because I doubt whether Ahriman is a single specific demon. I would be more inclined to assume something on the lines of what you stated, with a more dispersed materialization of Ahrimanic tendencies.

As I have been writing recently; I think that we may already be moving beyond the era of Ahrimanic dominance into a final era of Sorathic spiteful-destructiveness (such as the Western approach to the Fire Nation war), although Ahrimanic justifications are still being used for these policies and actions.

The general public (the manipulated masses) have still not caught up with the Ahrimanic era, and so are completely unable to acknowledge or comprehend a ruling class who are purposively destroying all that is good.

Daniel said...

@Bruce Charlton Sorath, an entity far more powerful than Lucifer or Satan.
Will Europe indeed be, in Steiner's words, be a field of ruins?

Bruce Charlton said...

@Daniel: "Will Europe indeed be a field of ruins?"

I think probably yes, and perhaps very soon.

The biggest open question is whether this (partly actively destructive, partly suicidal) collapse will bring the *whole* of he rest of the world down with it (from sheer Sorathic spite) - or whether some of the the non-West will survive.

Daniel said...

Concerning the incarnation of Ahriman, quoting from Rudolf Steiner's book 'The Incarnation of Ahriman', which i just bought, where he's quite specific about Ahriman's coming to earth: ''Ahriman will appear in a real objective sense on the earth. Just as Lucifer walked the earth and as Christ walked the earth, objectively, in human, so Ahriman too will walk the earth, bringing with him an extraordinary increase of power to earthly human reason.''

If indeed Lucifer incarnated as a human, and if Christ incarnated as a human, which every historical account indicates that he did, is it not reasonable to assume that Ahriman will incarnate as a human as well?

I believe Rudolf Steiner also wrote, can't recall where exactly, Ahriman will make himself known to the world when he reaches his thirties-something years of age, which means, if he was born around the year 2000, we still have to wait his public manifestation.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Daniel - I previously frequently made clear that my use of the Ahriman concept derives from Steiner, but is different from Steiner - but I can't repeat this every post, and must rely on those who are interested following the links provided.

I do not have the same understanding of angels and demons as Steiner - in particular, I do not believe demons can incarnate, and I do believe that demons are truly evil - i.e. they are opposed to God's creative will.

Steiner said much of value about evil in a proximate sense; but ultimately I regard Steiner as completely *wrong* about the nature of evil - since he regarded evil as ultimately working for Good.

Also my usage of Ahrimanic refers to a tendency or type among demons, and perhaps a leader of this type - rather than a specific individual demon.