Getting Waldorf Teachers
Up to Speed
"As Waldorf teachers,
we must be true anthroposophists
in the deepest sense of the word
in our innermost feeling.”
— Rudolf Steiner,
FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER
(Anthroposophic Press, 1998), p. 118.
Some teachers at Waldorf schools are not deeply committed Anthroposophists, but many are. Waldorf teacher training is founded on Rudolf Steiner's occultism, the vision he called Anthroposophy. Waldorf education embodies and enacts Anthroposophy.
Let's back into this subject.
Here is one bit of revealing evidence: The following passages, copied verbatim, describe the training offered by the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training. I transcribed this material from the Center's 2019-2020 catalog. Here is a window opening upon Waldorf teacher training a century or more since the inauguration of Waldorf schooling. Note the references to Anthroposophy, the evolution of consciousness, karma, and so on. Note, too, the extensive assignment of Rudolf Steiner's books and lectures for the trainees to read. Graduates of such a program should be deeply versed in Anthroposophy and they may indeed be what Steiner said they should be: "true anthroposophists in the deepest sense."
FIRST YEAR OF THE PROGRAM
In the First Year, students meet basic concepts of anthroposophy such as the evolution of consciousness; the human being as an evolving being of body, soul and spirit; thinking as a spiritual activity; the relationship of good and evil; the meaning of materialism in our time; and the ways and means for achieving self-discipline and self-knowledge. In seminar classes, particular attention is paid to thorough classroom review of weekly reading assignments. Students learn to discern the deep philosophical underpinnings of the Waldorf curriculum and to become conversant with the unique calibration of the curriculum to the development of the human being. The focus on the “why” of Waldorf education provides the important context for the “how” (methods) which comes increasingly into focus during the second and third years. Students can then benefit from self-motivated, life-long learning, a critical aspect of successful class teaching in a Waldorf school. Engagement in the arts supports the quest for inner awakening, enhanced perception and increased concentration.
SECOND YEAR OF THE PROGRAM
During the spring of the second year, each student participates in a three-week practicum in the classroom of an experienced Waldorf teacher. Students can choose a kindergarten, grades or high school practicum. A mentor supports students with practicum preparation during the weekends before and during the practicum. During this second year practicum, students are expected to take on classroom responsibilities as requested by the supervising teacher and teach a minimum of three full main lessons. The Second Year leads to a more refined and practical understanding of the self and its relationship to the world. Careful observation of phenomena in the natural world, and in human nature, support an active understanding of, and appreciation for, the interplay of teacher as artist and teacher as scientist. Rudolf Steiner’s research into the laws of karma, the laws of nature, and the laws of human development provide opportunity for continuing practice of objectivity and self-knowledge. During the second year seminar classes, students are expected to assume a greater role in the academic and artistic rendering of the reading materials which expand on first year topics, especially human development and the developmental phases of the growing child. Students explore further the way in which the Waldorf curriculum uniquely supports the changing consciousness of the child. Independent projects continue with two major presentations. Each student contributes approximately 30 volunteer hours annually to a local Waldorf school, for hands-on experience of the Waldorf community.
THIRD YEAR OF THE PROGRAM
The Objective of the Third Year is to consolidate and expand on what the students have learned in the previous two years. An intensive, year-long engagement with Rudolf Steiner’s key pedagogical lecture cycle, The Study of Man, provides the basis for deeper penetration of anthroposophical anthropology. Third-year students implement the philosophical foundation of the curriculum in the classroom as they take responsibility for building conscious, artistic lessons. They learn to integrate various aspects (movement, music, story, poetry, reading, math, drawing and painting) with the subjects they are teaching, and to structure the flow from one part of a lesson to another, from one lesson to another, from one subject to another. Students also work with the theory and practice of classroom management and group dynamics and, with their own growing capacity for objective self-knowledge, gain insight into working with parents and colleagues.
The Third Year Project, integral to the year’s course, is a mentored, independent research project on some aspect of the curriculum, presented at the end of the year to the teacher training community and reviewed by the class and their teachers.
Third Year topics include but are not limited to:
Pedagogical stories, verse-writing, math and science (grades track), puppetry (kindergarten track), the principles of Waldorf education applied to high school subjects (high school track), the four temperaments, storytelling, block rotations, design and review of lessons, the main lesson book, class plays, birthdays and festivals, narrative reports (Waldorf report cards), parent evenings, healthy habits for the teacher inside and outside the classroom, and inner work of the teacher. Rudolf Steiner lectures used: Study of Man, Practical Advice to Teachers, Discussions with Teachers, Waldorf Education for Adolescents or Essentials of Education
Each weekend includes either choir or recorder, and one of the following: eurythmy, speech, writing verses for children, painting with children, blackboard drawing, forming a morning circle, concentration exercises. Summer session art classes include: choir, eurythmy, sculpture and its use in the classroom, and instrumental and choral music and their use in the classroom.
A second supervised three-week session of practice teaching in a working Waldorf classroom is undertaken.
Here are descriptions of some courses
in the same program:
The Human Being and the Cosmos
Includes an introductory overview of anthroposophy.
Rudolf Steiner texts studied: Becoming the Archangel Michael’s Companions (formerly The Younger Generation); Self-Consciousness, the Spiritual Human Being; and Spiritual Guidance of Humanity. By means of these three texts, as well as lectures and presentations, the student is introduced to a broad range of anthroposophical concerns. These courses all contain artistic practices.
Introduction to Waldorf Education
Local Waldorf teachers present the three domains: kindergarten, grades and high school. Rudolf Steiner’s lecture cycle, The Kingdom of Childhood, is the basis for a thorough introduction to the principles of Waldorf pedagogy and the developmental stages on which they are based. Further considerations include but are not limited to: the four temperaments, the twelve senses, writing before reading, from the whole to the part, mood as the basis of discipline, the teacher as authority, the teacher as artist. Classroom observations take place during the Kingdom of Childhood block.
We consider such topics as individual, historical and world karma; reincarnation and karma; free will and destiny; laws of karma.
Rudolf Steiner lectures used: Manifestations of Karma and A Western Approach to Reincarnation and Karma
The course requires an independent biography project.
Students in the first, second or third year receive an introductory overview of the holistic principles of anthroposophically-extended medicine. Taught by a practicing physician trained in both conventional and anthroposophical medicine, the course includes topics such as the four organs; the four constitutional polarities; sclerotic versus inflammatory illnesses; childhood illnesses; the karma of illness.
Consideration of topics such as phenomenology as method; the four kingdoms of nature; the four elements; the four parts of the plant and their relationship to the human being; nature as artist. Rudolf Steiner lectures used: Harmony of the Creative Word (previously published as Man as Symphony of the Creative Word)
Presentation of an independent project on some indication in the text as it relates to the Waldorf curriculum.
Students in the third year of the program, outlined above, plunge into "an intensive, year-long engagement with Rudolf Steiner’s key pedagogical lecture cycle, The Study of Man."
THE STUDY OF MAN is sometimes referred to as the cornerstone of Waldorf education, outlining Steiner's most crucial conceptions for Waldorf education.
Here are some of the contents of STUDY OF MAN, taken from the lecture synopses at the beginning of the book:
Life before birth and after death.
Union of Spirit and Soul elements before birth.
Union of these with Life-Body after birth.
Mental picture stems from life before birth, Will from life after death.
Cosmic relations of threefold organism of man.
Concepts produce carbonic acid, imaginative pictures [produce] oxygen.
Intellect grasps only the dying.
Man thinks with bones as well as nerves.
The three Spiritual Principles: Spirit-Self (Manas — Manes), Life Spirit [and] Spirit Man.
The three Soul Principles: Consciousness, Intellectual and Sentient Souls.
The three Bodily Principles: Astral, Etheric and Physical.
Teacher must understand hidden being of man.
Soul reveals itself in sympathy and antipathy.
Waking — knowing in images: Dreaming — inspired feeling: Sleeping — intuitive willing.
The Twelve Senses: Touch, Life, Movement, Balance [are] related to Will: Smell, Taste, Sight, Warmth [are related] to feeling: Ego-sense, Thought, Hearing, Speech [are related] to knowing.
In first seven-year period[, the] child develops through imitation: in second [seven-year period,] through authority; in third [seven-year period,] through individual judgment.
Prayer metamorphosed to Blessing.
Jaws are stunted limbs in [the] head.
Sense of cosmic relations in ancient sculpture.
Head man reveals Body: Breast man [reveals] Body and Soul: Limb man [reveals] Body, Soul and Spirit.
Teacher must understand man as microcosm.
Relation of head to Body, Soul and Spirit.
Head [is] fully formed at change of teeth [i.e., when the baby teeth fall out].
Relation of Breast and Limbs to Body, Soul and Spirit.
Elementary school [is] concerned with breast man.
Plants would arise in man if he retained carbon.
Illnesses caused through plant nature asserting itself.
Plants are pictures of illnesses.
In digestion[,] only [the] middle process of combustion occurs.
Nature and effect of fat in [a] child.
Living elements absorb Soul and Spirit, decaying [elements] let them through.
Blood [is] opaque to Spirit, nerve [is] transparent [to Spirit].
Spirit active in bodily work, Body in mental [work].
Actual limbs are jaws of a spiritual head which continually devour man from without [i.e., from the outside].
Upper part of chest man develops to head nature in larynx — the “head of the throat.”
When second teeth appear[,] grammar [is] needed as [the] corresponding skeleton of speech.
[STUDY OF MAN, pp. 9-13.]
You may want to ask yourself whether you want your child to be educated by people who have studied these subjects and adopted this way of thinking about the world.
To the best of my knowledge, as of now, here are the Waldorf teacher training programs operating in North America:
Alkion Center, New Hampshire
Arcturus Rudolf Steiner Education Program, Illinois
Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training, California
Center for Anthroposophy, New Hampshire
Great Lakes Waldorf Instutute, Wisconsin
Kula Makua-Adult Waldorf Education, Hawaii
Sound Circle Center for Arts and Anthroposophy, Washington State
Sunbridge College, New York State
Waldorf Institute of Southern California
Waldorf Teacher Training Eugene, Oregon
Institut Rudolf Steiner au Quebec
Rudolf Steiner Centre - Toronto
West Coast Institute for Studies in Anthroposophy, British Columbia
For more on STUDY OF MAN,
see "Oh Humanity".
For more on Waldorf teacher training,
see "Sneaking It In"
the section "Waldorf Teacher Training"
in "My Life Among the Anthroposophists, Part 2".
FROM THE WALDORF WATCH NEWS
DECEMBER 8, 2019
ART, INCARNATION, AND
THE CHRISTMAS ARCHANGEL
To understand Waldorf education, we need to consider how Waldorf teachers are trained — and, specifically, how they are trained to think.
Here is the announcement of an upcoming event at a Waldorf teacher training center in California, USA:
Coming into Being: Supporting the Incarnation Process Through Art...
BACWTT  Healing Through Art II...
The second installment of the Healing Though Art  course will focus upon the incarnation process : how this can be seen in art , and how art can be helpful in being healthily present in the body on Earth . We will concentrate on developing a sense for the expression of the human spirit as it finds its place in the sheathes of the body , and practice artistic exercises that address specific incarnation qualities . Working with this theme during the winter season and the Holy Nights , we will be able to connect to the archetypal incarnation gesture of birth and the influence of the Archangel Gabriel .
December 30, 2019 – January 3, 2020, 9am-4pm; Cost: $400
Summerfield Waldorf School and Farm....
R.R. Footnotes for this Item
 BACWTT is the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training, in Santa Rosa, California.
 Waldorf schools place great emphasis upon the arts. The reasons are occult. Waldorf founder Rudolf Steiner taught that the arts have healthful spiritual effects. [See "Magical Arts".] Various types of art "therapies" are emphasized in Anthroposophical medicine, which is often practiced in and around Waldorf schools. [See, e.g., "Waldorf Rx", December 1, 2019.]
 In Waldorf belief, childhood is a period during which individuals descending from the spirit realm to Earth gradually incarnate four distinct bodies — the physical body, the etheric body, the astral body, and the ego body or "I". [See "Incarnation".] Waldorf education is designed to assist children to incarnate well and fully. So, for instance, we find statements such as this, made by a Waldorf teacher:
"Waldorf education is based upon the recognition that the four bodies of the human being [the physical, etheric, astral, and ego bodies] develop and mature at different times.” — Roberto Trostli, RHYTHMS OF LEARNING: What Waldorf Education Offers Children, Parents and Teachers (SteinerBooks, 2017), p. 4.
Note that Waldorf education is based on this concept.
 I.e., how it is reflected (consciously or not) in art.
 I.e., the physical human body or the entire four-part human form.
To live "healthily" on Earth, according to Waldorf belief, means finding a proper relationship with the Earth and with the spirits who work upon or through the Earth.
Steiner taught that the Earth is a living entity that has consciousness and emotions. He told Waldorf teachers to say things like the following to their students:
“Just think, children, our Earth feels and experiences everything that happens within it ... [I]t has feelings like you have, and can be angry or happy like you.” — Rudolf Steiner, DISCUSSIONS WITH TEACHERS (Anthroposophic Press, 1997), p. 132.
Steiner's conception of the Earth is not unlike the Gaia hypothesis, which conceives the Earth to be a self-regulating organism. But Steiner's vision is more occult and anthropomorphic. So, for instance, Steiner taught that the various levels of the Earth's interior have moral, spiritual, and emotional characteristics. Thus, he said the following about the sixth layer of the Earth:
“The Fire Earth is intimately connected with the human will. The Fire Earth produced the tremendous eruptions that brought the Lemurian epoch to an end [Lemuria was a continent that sank before Atlantis, Steiner taught; humans caused both disasters; the Fire Earth acted in accordance with our will]. At that time the forces which feed the human will went through a trial which unleashed the fire catastrophe that brought the Lemurian epoch to an end ... The Fire Earth is made essentially of feeling and will. It is sensitive to pain and would cry out if stepped on. It consists entirely of passions.” — Rudolf Steiner, THE INTERIOR OF THE EARTH: An Esoteric Study of the Subterranean Spheres (Rudolf Steiner Press, 2006), pp. 27-31.
Steiner's account of Lemuria, like his description of the Earth's inner layers, has no basis in science.
 According to Waldorf belief, a "sheath" is a protective covering that is sloughed off when the corresponding body (physical, etheric, astral, or ego) is incarnated. Each sheath is, in effect, an incorporeal womb within which a body gestates. We are born four times as our four sheaths produce our four bodies, Steiner taught.
 Incarnation "qualities" are essences or impulses associated with various stages of incarnation. In Waldorf belief, artistic exercises can augment these qualities and thus aid in the process of incarnation.
 These are the twelve nights following Christmas.
"In Anthroposophy...the nights between the nativity and the epiphany, roughly December 25th (some say the 24th) to January 6th, are thought to be the time when the veils are the most thin between the spirit realm and the human realm. These nights are the best time of year to set intentions, to plant seeds, and to go inward in prayer and meditation. Each of the Holy Nights represents a month of the following year. When close attention is paid during these days, sometimes people get a brief glimpse into their upcoming year." — "The Holy Nights", http://www.globalpeaceprayer.com/the-holy-nights.html.
 Waldorf schools generally hold elaborate, and reverent, Christmas ceremonies. But the religion underlying Waldorf education is not Christianity; it is Anthroposophy, which — in sharp contrast to Christianity — is polytheistic. [See "Polytheism".] Steiner taught that there are nine ranks of gods. Archangels (or Spirits of Fire, Agnishvattas, Solar Pitris) are gods two spiritual levels higher than humanity. In Waldorf belief, Gabriel is the Archangel of the Moon. As one of the four Archangels who oversee the seasons of the year, Gabriel exerts particular influence in winter, Steiner taught; this influence is balanced by Gabriel's effects in midsummer.
"We have learnt to know Gabriel as the Christmas Archangel. He is then the cosmic Spirit; we have to look up above to find him. During the summer Gabriel carries into man all that is effected by the plastic, formative forces of nourishment. At midsummer they are carried into man by the Gabriel forces, after Gabriel has descended from his cosmic activity during the winter to his human activity in summer, when his forces stream through the Earth and it is winter on the other side." — Rudolf Steiner, THE FOUR SEASONS AND THE ARCHANGELS (Rudolf Steiner Press, 1968), lecture 5, GA 229.
The BACWTT training course described here, held during the Holy Nights, will enable the attendees to "connect to...the influence of the Archangel Gabriel." Making connections with the gods is important for Waldorf teachers, since the teachers' role, Steiner said, is to represent the gods here on Earth:
“Among the faculty, we...should always remember that when we do something, we are actually carrying out the intentions of the gods, that we are, in a certain sense, the means by which that streaming down from above will go out into the world.” — Rudolf Steiner, FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER (Anthroposophic Press, 1998), p. 55.
Waldorf schools are, fundamentally, Anthroposophical religious institutions. [See "Schools as Churches".] Parent who are not Anthroposophists should consider this carefully before sending their children to Waldorf schools.
So: a snapshot of Waldorf teacher training.
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[Waldorfish art, R.R.]
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A TOUR THROUGH A CATALOGUE
The following course descriptions are taken from the Rudolf Steiner College 2011-2012 Catalogue. In a few places, I interject some comments of my own (RR).
◊ Cosmic and Human Evolution (1.5 credits). This course explores the stages of cosmic and human evolution from Ancient Saturn through Ancient Sun, Ancient Moon and Earth evolutionary cycles, and lays seeds to understand further stages of evolution in Future Jupiter, Future Venus and Future Vulcan stages. Texts include Esoteric Science: An Outline and Spiritual Hierarchies and Their Reflection in the Physical World.
◊ Karma and Reincarnation (1.5 credits). This course is an in-depth exploration of Rudolf Steiner’s original insights into the nature of reincarnation and karma. Texts include Manifestations of Karma, Theosophy, Reincarnation and Karma, World History in the Light of Anthroposophy, and selected lectures from the 8 volumes titled Karmic Relationships.
◊ The Philosophical Foundations of Waldorf Education (7.5 credits). Waldorf education is based on Anthroposophy, a transpersonal and phenomenological world-view [sic]. It is necessary for the Waldorf educator to grasp this view of the human being because Waldorf pedagogy arises directly from this understanding. The curriculum and methods arise from an understanding of this ontology.
◊ Astronomy — Macrocosm, Microcosm (2.0 credits). This course combines viewing the night sky, studying the constellations and rhythmic movements of the planets, and their correlations with the human form, rhythms of life, stages of consciousness and how the human individuality is related to the starry worlds and the Earth. We will discover the relationship between astronomy and the human body, astrology and the human soul, and astrosophy with the human spirit.
RR response: Astrology underlies many Waldorf beliefs and practices. Astrosophy (meaning "star wisdom") is a variant form of astrology, also important in the Waldorf belief system. [See "Astrology", "Waldorf Astrology", "Star Power", and "Astrosophy".] Thus far in our short review of courses offered by the Rudolf Steiner College, we have seen that aspiring Waldorf teachers — who will offer to "educate" your children — are taught about planetary stages of evolution (Old Saturn to Future Vulcan), karma, reincarnation, macrocosm/microcosm (the belief that the universe is an enlarged version of the human being), astrology, and astrosophy. And they are instructed that these beliefs, as wrapped up in Anthroposophy, are fundamental to Waldorf education. "The curriculum and methods arise from an understanding of this ontology." — The Philosophical Foundations of Waldorf Education (7.5 credits). When they offer to "educate" your children, will you say yes?
◊ Human Development and Pedagogical Implications, Level I (3.0 credits). This course offers a background theoretical foundation to the practical classes in the first year. The causes of learning and behavior difficulties, human development from an anthroposophical perspective, the incarnation process in the first seven years, the twelve senses and movement development are important themes....
RR: Thus far in our short review of courses offered by Rudolf Steiner College, we have seen that aspiring Waldorf teachers are taught about planetary stages of evolution, karma, reincarnation, macrocosm/microcosm, astrology, astrosophy, seven-year-long phases of incarnation, and the twelve (yes, 12) human senses. They are, in other words, steeped in mystic Anthroposophical doctrines — "human development from an anthroposophical perspective." This training, in and of itself, raises serious doubts about the qualifications of such teachers.
◊ The Four Temperaments (0.5 credits). A study of how to recognize in the child the four temperaments....
◊ Cosmic and Human Evolution (1.0 credits) [sic]. Through this course, students will understand the evolution of the cosmos, the kingdoms of nature, and of the human being from the standpoint of Anthroposophy.
◊ Seven Planetary Soul Types (0.5 credits) ... [H]ow they relate to the seven visible planets and the constitution of the human being.
◊ The Evolution of Consciousness through Art History. A spiritual overview of the visual arts ... [T]he changing evolution of consciousness of the human being from the ancient mystery centers to the modern age ... [W]orld art within the Post-Atlantean cultural epochs....
◊ Human Development and Pedagogical Implications, Level II (3.0 credits) ... [S]tudents explore the spiritual archetypes of the human being, as given by Rudolf Steiner, as well as an introduction to Astrosophy ... [S]oul and constitutional types in children ... [M]editative work of the teacher....
RR: Consider. There are people who, when they read this catalogue, do not roll their eyes. Instead they sign up, take the classes, and then go out into the world as Waldorf teachers. There is no bright line separating Rudolf Steiner’s occultism from the views found among Waldorf faculty. The doctrines of Anthroposophy and the beliefs of Waldorf teachers are often one and the same.
◊ Spiritual Streams and Sun Initiates* (1.0 credits) [sic]. This course is an exploration of the spiritual streams identified by Rudolf Steiner in The Search for the New Isis, selected lectures from Karmic Relationship, and World History in the Light of Anthroposophy.
◊ The Master Thesis Project Course will be introduced as a modern path of initiation,** wherein proficiency to conduct research in a number of different venues allows the individual to gain access to a greater breadth and depth of knowledge....
RR: An “initiate” is an aspirant who has been accepted into an inner circle. A spiritual initiate possesses hidden or occult spiritual knowledge (or thinks s/he does). Aspiring Waldorf teachers are taught about spiritual initiation, and they are led toward such initiation. Waldorf teachers who believe themselves to be initiates bring the fruits of initiation into their work in Waldorf schools.
* In Anthroposophical belief ◊ a “Sun Initiate” was a spiritualist on Atlantis who had special knowledge of the spiritual forces emanating from the Sun; ◊ spiritual streams are lines of spiritual wisdom developed by various schools of initiates; ◊ Isis — the Egyptian goddess of fertility — is the divine female principle; ◊ everything (even divinity) is evolving into new, generally higher forms.
** One of Steiner's key texts, HOW TO KNOW HIGHER WORLDS, bears the subtitle "A Modern Path of Initiation".
◊ The Philosophy of Freedom (1.5 credits). The student will develop understanding for the epistemology underlying Anthroposophy. Answering the question, "Can I gain certainty in knowing the world?" affirmatively leads to "Can I become truly free?"
RR: The Steiner belief system, Anthroposophy (a word meaning, misleadingly, “human wisdom”), is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of knowledge and truth. Rudolf Steiner’s followers think they can "gain certainty" by developing powers of clairvoyance. They work to develop heightened powers of imagination, inspiration, and intuition — which Steiner identified as three stages of clairvoyance. When they think they have attained these, they believe that the views they form through these types of consciousness are true. They imagine something, or get an inspiration, of have an intuition... Such “human wisdom” becomes, in their view, essentially unarguable.* They are then freed from any need to dispute their views with outsiders; they feel no need to consider the opinions of outside scholars and scientists.** All external knowledge (i.e., knowledge developed through use of the senses, the brain, and the rules of logic) becomes suspect, in their view; to know the Truth, they look inward, not outward. They are “free” of external rules, limitations, and doubts; they are “free” to think what they want.
This freedom is not absolute, however. Steiner often spoke of the need for gurus or spiritual guides, such as himself. He also spoke of the crucial difference between the white path of truth (his own) and the black path of falsehood. He said that he apprehended the truths of the white path through his use of “exact clairvoyance” — his occult “discoveries” are virtually unquestionable because they are exactly true. Thus, his followers have the choice between the path of truth and the path of fallacy. Their “freedom” is little more than the power to make a single decision: They can freely decide to believe in Steiner and his system, or they can freely choose to suffer the dreadful consequences of failing to believe in Steiner and his system.***
* Some Anthroposophists are more sophisticated than others in sorting through their "clairvoyant" findings; some are more scrupulous in "controlling" their clairvoyant powers. But all of them harbor the same fundamental delusion, accepting the most unreliable states of consciousness as the most reliable. [As to the reliability of clairvoyance, see "Clairvoyance".]
** Anthroposophical books sometimes include this prefatory note: “No person is held qualified to form a judgment on the contents of this work, who has not acquired — through the School of Spiritual Science itself or in an equivalent manner recognized by the School of Spiritual Science — the requisite preliminary knowledge. Other opinions will be disregarded....” The School of Spiritual Science is a central Anthroposophical institution preserving and extending the results Steiner's claimed clairvoyance. In essence, the prefatory note rejects all views except those stemming from Steiner and his clairvoyant system.
*** Anthroposophists do have a bit of wiggle room. They can disagree with one another about the meaning of Steiner’s various teachings — doctrinal disagreements are as common in Anthroposophy as in any other faith system. Thus, each Anthroposophist can be “certain” that his or her “clairvoyant knowledge” is true, even if others have different “clairvoyant knowledge” and even if Steiner, by some accounts, taught something different from what the individual has “certainly” learned through inward vision.
Let's end our review of Rudolf Steiner College teacher training with one more tabulation of the Anthroposophical doctrines in the courses we have considered. In these courses alone, aspiring Waldorf teachers are taught about planetary stages of evolution/cosmic evolution, the evolution of consciousness, karma, reincarnation, macrocosm/microcosm, astrology, astrosophy, seven-year-long phases of incarnation, the twelve human senses, the four temperaments, the Anthroposophical take on the kingdoms of nature, the Anthroposophical take on human nature, planetary soul types/soul types in children, spirituality in art, mystery or occult centers, occult wisdom, Atlantis, cultural epochs (i.e., historical periods of spiritual evolution), meditative work to be done by teachers, spiritual streams, initiation, Sun initiates, and Isis. Among other things. All of this is taught, of course, "from the standpoint of Anthroposophy."
There is, generally, little or no separation between the mysticism of Anthroposophy and the Waldorf worldview. Waldorf trainees study these subjects in order to become Waldorf teachers. Gentle reader, please bear this in mind. The people being taught to separate themselves from reality in this manner, the people receiving this instruction in the practice of self-deception, are aspiring Waldorf teachers. Soon after completing their training, they will offer themselves as educators for your children. If they have taken to heart the lessons given at Rudolf Steiner College and similar Waldorf teacher-training schools, they may well rank among the very last people you should consider for such important work.
During most of the years when I was creating Waldorf Watch, Rudolf Steiner College appeared to be a thriving enterprise. One of the College's attributes was its relative candor about its beliefs and practices. Perhaps this candor proved excessive. In more recent years, under pressure from California regulators, the College began to retrench. Ultimately, the College closed. Waldorf teacher training in the USA now occurs at other Anthroposophical and semi-Anthroposophical institutions, many of which are far less forthcoming about the nature of their course offerings. However, the overall aim and direction of the courses at those institutions appears to be generally consistent with what we have seen here.
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If you'd like to see additional informaton
about Waldorf teacher training,
please click on this link: "Teacher Training, Part 2".
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A note about URL's (Web addresses) and links to them: These may become outdated. Owners of websites may remove pages, change their locations, etc. I work to maintain the URL's and links at my own websites, but I cannot control what happens elsewhere. If any URL's or links I present here prove to be outdated, I apologize. They were all current when I wrote the various essays at my sites, and perhaps with a little Internet sleuthing you may be able to find materials that otherwise seem to have vanished or been altered.
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[Waldorfish art, R.R.]