The most important thing for which we can prepare a child is the experience of freedom, at the right moment in life, through the understanding of one's own being.


Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925)

body, spirit, soul, knowledge, prenatal birth, future, will, feeling
By: Marcel de Leuw, January 2020, First published in the Reader 'Waldorf 100 Centenary Conference on ‘The First Teachers Course’ Goetheanum 2019

Day 2: The human being as a breath of the cosmos

Thoughts on 'The First Teachers Course'* from Marcel de Leuw

On the second day of his course Rudolf Steiner presents a new psychology in which spirit and body are involved. The resulting question about the middle term of this duality, i.e. about the soul that connects body and spirit, occupies the first days of the lecture course entitled The Foundations of Human Experience. Also in the soul three levels penetrate each other: The mediating feeling lives in the middle between the pole of knowledge, which carries its forces from the prenatal birth into life, and the pole of will connected with the future. The pedagogical consequences of this cosmic-human space of tension are far-reaching: qualities of time and space are transformed into methodology. This is pointed out in many ways: I myself, as a human being, am a breath of the cosmos.

Marcel de Leuw (1948 Netherlands) was a class teacher and trainer at the teacher, kindergarten and eurythmy seminar for many years. He was a member of the International Forum (Hague Circle) and coordinator of the Pedagogical Section in the Netherlands. De Leuw is active in the national and international school movement and is a guest lecturer in various anthroposophical training courses. He is now retired and gives courses and lectures.


Translated by Douglas Gerwin


* 'The First Teachers Course' is the foundation of Waldorf Education with the notes from the lectures of Rudolf Steiner: 'The Foundations of Human Experience', 'Practical Advice to Teachers' and 'Discussions with Teachers'.

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