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Spiritual Relations in the Human Organism - Rudolf SteinerSpiritual Relations in the Human Organism
Three lectures by Rudolf Steiner

Spiritual Relations in the Human Organism consists of three lectures given by Rudolf Steiner in Dornach in October of 1922. In these lectures Steiner describes physical processes in the human organism as expressions of activities and forces in the etheric and astral bodies as well as of the human ego.

The first lecture examines what is taking place in the act of visual perception, showing the eye as a meeting place for the interaction of external optical forces and inner soul processes. The second lecture describes the mysterious process of food consumption and digestion, emphasising the difference and mutually exclusiveness between outer nature and the inner world of the human organism. Here we see how all etheric and astral elements of the food we eat must be destroyed by our organism before it enters our blood stream and how illness results if this is not sufficiently achieved. Steiner then goes on to describe how the resultant “killed” substance is then progressively re-enlivened through its progress in the blood stream through the heart; how it is taken up further into our astral organism through the kidney's processes; into our ego organisation through the liver; and even taken as far as Spirit Self through the spleen.

Based on an understanding of these various organs and their activities as expressions of soul functions, Steiner indicates avenues of medical diagnosis and treatment. He also describes the difference in therapeutic approaches to the treatment of inflammations on the one hand and of tumours on the other.

The third lecture puts the development of the healing arts in a historical perspective, showing how earlier than the fifth millennium B.C. all healing was addressed to the etheric body which could be perceived in luminous detail in all living things. This was an age of “light” as this luminous quality was perceptually present throughout our environment and only since then has it faded and become over-shadowed by an ever-sharpening ‘opaque’ physical perception. This age of “darkness” which followed gave birth to our conceptual consciousness and our strongly materialistic outlook. Steiner then describes how since the beginning of the 20th Century, changes in our organism are gradually allowing the first hints of a re-awakening of this perception of the luminous etheric and how this will increase over the coming millennia. With the addition of our hard-won objective consciousness, we can once again apply our medical emphasis not just to the physiological end results of health and disease but to the causes as they are expressed in the harmony or irregularities within the etheric body.

Mercury Press
3 lectures, Dornach 20 - 23 October 1922, GA218
65pp; paperback
ISBN: 0-936132-11-6

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