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The Essence of the Active Word
Fourth Lecture Course for Priests of the Christian Community

Vom Wesen des winkenden Wortes

Rudolf Steiner
(Given in 1923; Bn 345; GA 345 CW 345)

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The first part of this volume contains four lectures which Rudolf Steiner gave to the priests of the “Christian community,” founded ten months earlier, in Stuttgart. In the second part are the original manuscripts, handwritten by Rudolf Steiner. These are supplements to what had already been given during the second and third lecture courses. They are consecrations for the Festivals of the Year and other rites.

First Lecture, Stuttgart, 11 July 1923:

The development of the work of The Christian Community from its inception. Symptoms of the undercurrents in spiritual streams at the present time. Regarding Ahrimanic forces absorbed by humanity through outer culture and making it harmless. Answers to questions by the audience. The right way of being immersed in the ritual. The ritual as the speech of the higher world. Daily self-participation with the Act of Consecration of Man. Permeating the self with priest consciousness.

Second Lecture, 12 July 1923:

Difficulties in the viewpoints of the relationships of the Movement for Religious Renewal and the Anthroposophical Movement. Inner truth is necessary as opposed to the unconscious untruthfulness of today. The necessity for an intention in the search of knowledge towards making the spiritual valid again within the nature of knowledge. The relationship of mankind to the ritual. Answers to questions from the participants.

Third Lecture, 13 July 1923

Impulses towards sensing oneself in the spiritual world. The weaving of the genius of speech. Our relationship to speech. The word `human' / individual (“Mensch”). A threefold meditation about “the Being whom I want to describe by the word `human'”. Experiencing truth in words. The Priest as genius of speech.

Fourth Lecture, 14 July 1923

The New Testament as a supersensible revelation. Regarding the translation of the Gospels. An example of a new kind of translation: John's Gospel 17, 1-19. Facts of the spiritual evolution of humanity; after the Mystery of Golgotha the consciousness of God penetrated humanity in a different way than previously.

Known Publications:

  • Vom Wesen des winkenden Wortes, German language editions: 1994. ISBN 3-7274-3450-3,
  • The Essense of the Active Word, Course for Priests Regarding Christian Religious Work, translation by Hanna von Maltitz, 2017. The e.Lib, Inc.


GA 345 ... Selections ...

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Vom Wesen des winkenden Wortes

Book Cover Image Der erste Teil dieses Bandes umfasst vier Vorträge, die Rudolf Steiner für die Priester der zehn Monate vorher begründeten «Christengemeinschaft» in Stuttgart gehalten hat. Im zweiten Teil sind Originalhandschriften Rudolf Steiners wieder gegeben. Es handelt sich dabei um Ergänzungen dessen, was an Wortlauten für kultische Handlungen schon während des zweiten und dritten Vortragskurses übermittelt worden war.



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The Essence of the Active Word

Book Cover Image The first part of this volume contains four lectures which Rudolf Steiner gave to the priests of the “Christian community,” founded ten months earlier, in Stuttgart. In the second part are the original manuscripts, handwritten by Rudolf Steiner. These are supplements to what had already been given during the second and third lecture courses. They are consecrations for the Festivals of the Year and other rites. These four lectures, comprising the entire GA 345, are from the lecture series entitled, Lectures at a Meeting of the Priests in Stuttgart, published in German as, Vom Wesen des winkenden Wortes. They have never before been translated into English.



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