Representative / Group

The Representative of Humanity

aka

The Group

[Public domain photograph.]

This monumental statue (nine meters high) stands in the

worldwide Anthroposophical headquarters, the Goetheanum.

The large figure, with arm upraised, is the Sun God, Christ.

Christ is the "representative of humanity" in that he

is the ideal prototype for future human evolution, Steiner taught.

The arch-demon Ahriman crouches in the cave below Christ's feet,

while the arch-demon Lucifer (upside-down, plunging out of heaven —

hard to discern) is diagonally beyond Christ's left shoulder.

Christ's role in human affairs, Steiner taught, entails

standing between Lucifer and Ahriman, converting their

wiles and temptations into valuable gifts.

(The statue also contains secondary figures of Lucifer and Ahriman.

The second Lucifer floats diagonally beyond Christ's right shoulder,

and the second Ahriman — entangled with Lucifer —

lurks to the right of Christ's lowered arm.

There is no real reason for Ahriman and Lucifer to be shown twice,

and this was not part of the original design.

But late in the sculpting process, Steiner decided the statue

seemed unbalanced, so he elected to add the extra figures.)

Above all — at the upper left — hovers a mysterious "rock being,"

who seems bemused. A nature spirit or elemental being,

the rock being is referred to as "Cosmic Humor."

(This figure, too, was added late, for balance and

to alleviate the horror that threatened to be associated with the statue

after Steiner nearly fell to his death from a high scaffold

enclosing the statue during its creation.)

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For additional information on these various matters, see

"Sun God", "Prototype", "Lucifer", "Ahriman", and

(concerning nature spirits) "Neutered Nature".

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Steiner is often credited with creating the statue,

and certainly he designed it.

But most if not all of the actual carving

was done by sculptress Edith Maryon

and her assistants.

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The ad hoc process of developing the statue parallels in many ways

the process by which Steiner developed Anthroposophy.

And the results — enigmatic, duplicative, unprepossessing — are much the same.

If the statue does not truly represent humanity,

it serves as a fine representative of Anthroposophy.