As we celebrate the origins of Steiner education 100 years ago, it’s also worth re-examining the remarkable work of Dr Rudolf Steiner himself. Here’s an interesting article from the New York Times I came across some years ago which describes an exhibition of Steiner’s work.
Douglas Brenner is a Steiner educated student himself and is now a well know author and writer on design topics in the US. His article gives a personal reflection on the originality and remarkable diversity of Steiner’s work across so many disciplines.
Remember our Glenaeon celebrations of the centenary of Steiner education at Castlecrag on Saturday September 14th. Details are on the flyers later in the Newsletter.
Please share this event with family and friends who may be interested in a glimpse into the wonderful world of childhood that Steiner education promotes and delivers. We welcome all parents and friends of the Steiner education impulse, a healing and enlivening impulse in the world.
Soul Man: “…each encounter makes me want to deepen our acquaintance”
New York Times, April 7th, 2010
By age 12, I had a rote reply for grown-ups’ quizzical looks when they heard I went to a Steiner (Waldorf) school: “It’s based on the ideas of Rudolf Steiner.” Blank stare. “He was an Austrian philosopher who believed in teaching the whole student — mind, body and soul.” Luckily no one ever asked me to elaborate, because I’d have been at a loss for words — except to say that we students got to do lots of drawing and painting, which I loved, but we couldn’t skip Eurythmy class (yuck). Any serious discussions of pedagogic method and what Steiner called his “spiritual science,” anthroposophy, took place out of earshot in the teachers’ room. My only mental picture of Steiner (1861-1925) came from a dim black and white photo showing a stern mouth and X-ray eyes that made me glad this guy wasn’t our headmaster. Oh, well, I reasoned, as soon as I enter the real world after graduation, it’s Goodbye, Dr Steiner.
In fact, decades later, I keep bumping into him, and each encounter makes me want to deepen our acquaintance. A gardener I met praised the ecological marvels of biodynamic farming, a Steiner innovation. An art historian introduced me to the Goetheanum, a temple-like edifice that Steiner — an expert on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s theories of natural metamorphosis and the physiology of colour — designed to anchor the anthroposophical colony in Dornach, Switzerland.