Occult Science - An Outline - Rudolf Steiner

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Occult Science - An Outline - Rudolf SteinerOccult Science - An Outline
by Rudolf Steiner
'Classic Translation'

Occult Science - An Outline by Rudolf Steiner is the most fundamental and comprehensive of his written works on Anthroposophy. Written in 1909 when he was still head of the German Section of the Theosophical Society, it provided for the Theosophists and later the Anthroposophical movement, the broadest framework of occult knowledge that the movement had yet seen. Occult Science is an expansive body of knowledge which documents the evolution of mankind, the kingdoms of nature and the world as viewed from a purely spiritual standpoint - that is as derived from spiritual causative agents. Unlike other attempts to describe the formation and evolution of the world, Steiner does not stop at symbolic abstractions such as "the 7 Rays" or generalised mystical expressions which lead the reader nowhere. He describes activities and events as concrete realities describing actual cosmic beings, their characters, relationships and their various creative activities over vast periods of cosmic time. This is knowledge that has been known for millennia in the restricted circles of the highest occult brotherhoods, but this is the first time it has been communicated to the public in modern conceptual form. Much that is described in detail here has been referred to in the major works of H. P. Blavatsky (Isis Unveiled and Secret Doctrine) but not with the organisation and orderly detail that is presented here. Much more is included concerning the missions and intricacies of the series of human cultures as well as the future development of humanity and the world.

Occult Science is not a work of mental speculation nor is it simply the reiteration of an occult tradition. As the title implies, it is the result of objective examination, but with organs of perception that modern man has as yet no conception of. Steiner was qualified to write such a book and speak of these matters only because he had evolved those capacities of spiritual perception as well as personal self-mastery that he can be regarded as an "initiate", and in his case one of very high calibre. Such initiates, as Steiner describes, have always been with humanity working in various ways to assist human evolution through key personalities. They have always - at least in recent millennia - remained in the background, undetected by the general populace. Steiner is the first instance in modern times when such an initiate has entered the public arena and spoken directly, to those who would hear, of the inner nature of human and world existence. This public emergence was necessitated by the extreme materialism that humanity has descended into, a condition which, if continued, would have "buried" the human soul in false materialistic concepts and ultimately would have bound the human being in inner misery and illness, some of which is already being seen spreading in human culture.

Occult Science starts with a description of the nature of spiritual research and the faculties involved and then leads on to the fruits of such research. The reader is led through descriptions of the manifold nature of the human being; the nature and significance of sleep and death; the long and varied evolution of the world, mankind and the kingdoms of nature - past, present and future; the nature of initiation and the means of achieving it - with actual exercises (See Knowledge of Higher Worlds - for a complete description); and then further explanatory details on various aspects of the human being, the spiritual worlds, etc.

This is not a "New Age" book with sweet descriptions of angelic presences or "magic" formulas. It assumes a certain degree of inner maturity in the reader and an ability to apply oneself to a serious study of the human condition and within this, one's own. It is not a light read. It requires inner work to apprehend the spiritual with actual spiritual thinking - what Steiner calls "sense-free thinking." This book, like so many of his works, requires much of the reader. But for those who are willing to apply themselves, the results are not merely information taken in but inner transformation in the direction of the initiation process. The very reading and re-reading of Steiner's works stimulates the semi- and sub-conscious forces which become conscious faculties in the initiate.

Occult Science - An Outline is available both in the earlier 'Classic' translation (re-issued in 2005 by Rudolf Steiner Press) and a contemporary (1997) translation (Anthroposophic Press/Steiner Books). This later translation is titled: "An Outline of Esoteric Science."

Rudolf Steiner Press
GA13, Trans. George and Mary Adams
351pp; paperback
ISBN: 1-85584-136-3

To purchase this title, please click here: Occult Science - An Outline - Rudolf Steiner

To view the contemporary translation, please click here: An Outline of Esoteric Science



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Occult Science - An Outline - Rudolf Steiner