- Its Foundation and Purpose
The Initiative for Anthroposophy is a global association of individuals who have as their common purpose the cultivation of a truly esoteric Anthroposophy – a spiritual science and methodology capable of transcending the limits of knowledge imposed by the sense-bound intellect and attaining to genuine spiritual reality. The cognitive faculty of intuitive, ‘beholding’ thinking, with its inherent sevenfold methodology at the core of Rudolf Steiner’s epistemological works, as well as its extension via the anthroposophical methods of esoteric development, are the means by which this work is attained.
The Initiative for Anthroposophy seeks to cultivate this esotericism on a completely free and individual basis and is fundamentally independent of all affiliations, groups, societies, etc. As such, the Initiative is not a part or function of the Anthroposophical Society and furthermore, while it openly strives for collaboration with all serious anthroposophists, it does not recognize the Society’s leadership or the High School of Spiritual Science as having any formal esoteric authority in relation to the Spiritual Movement of Anthroposophy. This in no way precludes the associates of the Initiative from working within or being members of the Society – or other institutions for that matter – it only affirms the individual as the exclusive source of modern esoteric endeavor in contrast to the historical false institutionalization of esoteric authority. On this basis, the formation of collaborative working groups – free from dogma, personality worship and group prejudice – are essential to the Initiative’s aims.
The Initiative for Anthroposophy is convinced that in our time the cultivation of the spiritual Movement of Anthroposophy is wholly reliant upon the individual finding actual life within genuine spiritual reality. With the death of Rudolf Steiner and the failure of the Christmas Foundation impulse of 1923/24, the union of the Esoteric School and exoteric Society is no longer a fact. Rudolf Steiner did not appoint a successor and thus the School withdrew into the spiritual world with him. Since then, the Esoteric School, housed within the temple of the spiritual Goetheanum, can only be approached supersensibly by those individuals who prepare themselves. Within the Society, a restructuring for the free, non-hierarchical association of anthroposophists was needed, but instead dogma, power struggles and the assertion of false authority ensued. In the name of the “New Mysteries” a perpetual, illusory Christmas Conference dogma has been promoted and the Society enshrined in a false holy-institutionalism, ala Rome. Of necessity, the cynical counter image – a kind of ‘post-Steinerism’, a worldly degradation of Anthroposophy – has also arisen. All this has done untold harm to the Society and Movement throughout the last century. The Initiative simply stands for this fact openly and knowledgeably, and promotes an empowered base of individuals to continue the esoteric work without hierarchy, Societal structure or group-think.
Anthroposophy has been treated as something that one works out of – that one can simply take the ideas of spiritual science, apprehended with the ordinary intellectual consciousness, and apply them in like manner to the practical world. The result is that in many initiatives – schools, businesses, medical endeavors, trainings, etc. – an exoteric, un-anthroposophical spirit prevails. One hundred years later, there is still not a single major cultural sphere where Anthroposophy exercises the dominant formative influence. The Society itself, likewise, has steadily distanced itself from its true origin, purpose, and, most importantly, methodology. The Initiative for Anthroposophy is formed to place the emphasis back upon working into Anthroposophy. It sees the fundamental task of Anthroposophy as the actualizing of esotericism – ‘the principle of initiation as the principle of civilization’ – that impulses and initiatives must proceed from the esoteric itself and that for this the esoteric must be attained.
The organs of the Initiative for Anthroposophy are, first and foremost, the concrete work of individuals in their various locales engaged in research and collaborative exchange with others. Secondly, as a means of global communication and publication, the website www.anthroinitiative.org, is available. While a website cannot be the home of esoteric work – this can only be cultivated between human beings and the spiritual world itself – articles, postings, event schedules, and links can assist the Initiative’s goals, providing research aids, insights and publications, and a forum for global communication. Furthermore, the Initiative’s website is the home of the Anthroposophical Research Wiki, a user built research aid with comprehensive quotation compilations from the results of Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual research. The Initiative views an anthroposophical institute for higher learning as a cultural necessity and seeks to lay the ground work for the academic, esoteric and communal basis of such a prospect in the near future.
It is the conviction of the Initiative for Anthroposophy that Anthroposophy is an evolutionary necessity for our epoch, that Anthroposophy’s fundamental purpose is a complete qualitative change in human consciousness and cognition. As such, Anthroposophy must reckon with the historical and metahistorical demands of the age, providing an adequate symptomatology for the orientation of positive work. The battle for the cosmic principle and substance of intelligence is being waged in our time – will humanity be submerged in an age of AI techno-materialism, degenerating toward evil, or will man assert himself as a spiritual, self-creative evolutionary principle, a free, system forming ‘I’-being? If the latter path is taken, then human beings become, as each is able, ‘men of the threshold’ – representatives of the higher worlds, capable of not only experiencing the spiritual but also serving the Spirit’s transformation of the earth, humanity and sub-nature.
The Initiative for Anthroposophy is both global and individual. It can even be seen as a term for the real/actual striving of the spiritual anthroposophical Movement. It is real only to the degree human individuals make it real. There is no formal membership, only an association of independent researchers. The individual actualization of esoteric Anthroposophy establishes the earthly-human link to the Spiritual Goetheanum and the Esoteric School. To work in the sense of the Initiative is to create its association.