Rudolf Steiner's weekly meditations

Artistic Response

Here is my artistic response to this week's Soul-Calendar-43 meditation verse by Rudolf Steiner. For a brief introduction to this project, please see my first couple of posts on the blog pages. See also where you can see a range of translations into English and other languages.

Soul-Calendar-43 meditation

Rudolf Steiner's original soul-calendar-43 meditation
January 26-February 1

In winterlichen Tiefen
Erwarmt des Geistes wahres Sein;
Es gibt dem Weltenscheine
Durch Herzenskräfte Daseinsmächte;
Der Weltenkälte trotzt erstarkend
Das Seelenfeuer im Menscheninnern.

My translation
In wintry depths
Warms the spirit’s true being;
It gives the world-appearance
Through heart’s-strength presence-powers;
The world-cold notwithstanding strengthening
The soul-fire in human-inwardness.

My interpretation of the soul-calendar-43 meditation

We're still in winter's depth, which warms the spirit and enhances the clarity of thought. Everything seems more clearly outlined and therefore it's easier for the spirit's true being to come to life, to warm up, as the rest of the verse sugests. Now we're finally beginning to engage with the world out there again. It is through my spirit's engagement with the world out there, and through my heart's warmth or love for the world, as it appears to me through my senses, that I imbue that world of appearance with the power to be, to be present, alive. This is puzzling to our ordinary thinking. Surely, I have absolutely no impact on the world when I confront it as a mere observer? Or is it that somehow when I look at the world as it appears to me and with deep love, that the living qualities of that world, the qualities that otherwise lie hidden beneath the appearances, become visible to me? Perhaps they even begin to speak to me, so that a dialogue ensues and my observation turns into communion with those hidden living qualities? The paradox here seems to be that on the one hand I may indeed see true being when I look at the world through my heart. But on the other hand, and at the same time, when I do this, it seems as if the world is simultaneously transformed, given life, through my act of loving observation, loving thinking, loving knowing. This experience in turn, despite the cold of winter, further warms my inner exprience of being truly human, of being a spiritual being within a world of appearance. The life-giving, or life-revealing dialogue with the world of appearance in turn nourishes my soul and spirit and warms me in the conviction of my own likeness to true being, my own true self, who lives in this body, on this earth, at this time, but is immortal.

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