Rudolf Steiner's idea that evil has two faces and natures - the unconscious/ instinctive/ spiritual Luciferic, and the systematic/ bureaucratic/ materialistic Ahrimanic - is one that has lodged permanently in my mind (although I don't use the terms exactly as Steiner did).
Steiner foresaw that the Ahrimanic tendency was dominant and increasing in our age - and he was absolutely correct; including within the Anthroposophical Society which he founded. Indeed, the history of Steiner's movement is worth studying from the perspective of just how pervasive, how inevitable-seeming, the Ahrimanic tendency is in our age. here we have a movement studying, and officially opposing, the Ahrimanic tendency but using highly Ahrimanic methods!
Such is, however, almost universal in our time. Whenever any human and individual priority or problem is highlighted; the 'solution' is always to set-up institutional, bureaucratic mechanisms that are supposed to deal with it: task forces, surveys, committees, conferences, statistical reports, agenda-items, targets...
(The middle sixties is a clear example; because the 'sixties impulse' was Luciferic - but this dominated for only about one year - from the summer of 67 to the summer of 68; and everything radical/ leftist/ progressive we have seen since, has been ever-more-thoroughly Ahrimanic. Nowadays, the sparks of individualistic Luciferic instincts - especially sexual and transgressive - merely feed the Leviathan of bureaucracy.)
These are all both tools and manifestations of Ahrimanic thinking; and implement and sustain that cold, rational, spirit-denying materialism. This is specifci totalitarianism. Then the individual Ahrimanic bureaucracies link-up to make the Single Totalitarian Bureaucracy, centrally controlled - and Ahriman is triumphant.
It matters not one whit if the 'ends' and objectives are spiritual, heartfelt, animistic - because the means by which they are approached ensures that spirit-denying materialism is the medium of discourse.
We see this everywhere, except in small family or friendship groupings; every institution is not just contaminated but corrupted and inverted by Ahrimanic thinking; and it is this which makes me ever more convinced that our future must be post-institutional - involving a return (but with a major spiritual distinction) to that world built on loving personal relationships rather than formal organisation.
However, first-time-round; this personal world was Luciferic - and therefore unconscious, instinctive, 'given', immersive, unindividual. It cannot be Luciferic again - even if some would wish for that; because history is linear and a developmental process.
So the future personal world will be conscious, self-aware, deliberately-chosen - therefore individually-based.
This prospect ought to be welcomed; but even though it is not welcomed, and is indeed opposed vigorously (even/ especially among most Christians), it will very likely happen. It will happen because corrupt institutions cannot sustain the modern world, and the corruption runs so deep and has already done such damage that there is no possibility of institutional reform. There is grossly too-little of the true source from-which a reform might be initiated and sustained.
Our institutional corruption is terminal - the cancer of Ahrimanism has overwhelmed the host; and there is not enough healthy tissue remaining for the cancer to be cut-away. The cure will kill us - more exactly; if the cancer does not kill us first, the cure will kill the institutions.
To put it differently: cancer is dysfunctional, and will kill the host; yet the global organism is almost-all cancer tissue: so either way, there can be no cure.
A world of seven billion people without formal institutions seems impossible - and presumably is impossible. And if the vast population cannot be sustained, then it will not be sustained.
So this will be something like the End Times - even when examined purely in a material sense; although I have no doubt that its ultimate causes are spiritual.