A Bridge to the Spirit
lectures by Rudolf Steiner
Edited and introduced by Michael Lipson, Ph.D.
Sleep and Dreams is a
compilation of various lectures given by Rudolf Steiner between 1910
and 1924, in which he examines our dreaming and sleeping states as
natural, though unconscious, passages into the spiritual realms
that surround and permeate our physical existence.
What are dreams? Every
age, every culture, perhaps even every person has a different
answer. They agree at least on this: that dreams
offer us something other
than our waking state perception of the world. Their presence in our
lives demonstrates that we are not limited to a single mode of
consciousness. The world of sleep is largely a blank for us, an
abyss of non-consciousness yawning between one day and the next. But
the very fact that we can dream suggests our potential for some
kind of awareness within the abyss.
Sleep and Dreams is a selection of talks
in which Rudolf Steiner
completely different way of looking at dreams, one based on an
understanding of the spiritual nature of the human being.
If we admit the
possibility that physical existence is just the tip of the iceberg whose
mass belongs in the spiritual world, a radically new view of dream-consciousness
offers itself for consideration:
not simply as a chaotic assemblage of feelings
and images, but with the development of
refined inner faculties, as the threshold to
a previously hidden spiritual reality.
Sleep, death, and meditation are
the three realms in which consciousness has the opportunity to
deepen its immersion in the divine flow of existence. In principle,
we can become infinitely more self-aware in each of them. For human
consciousness is not fixed, neither in its contents nor in its level
of alertness. All day long the contents of consciousness change; at
night the level of alertness and also the inner
qualities of consciousness change. These lectures permit the reader to
consider the profound
qualities of experience we normally "sleep through"
and to contemplate Steiner's astounding program: to
states of consciousness
which not only maintain themselves through
dreams and through sleep, but also to open
our waking consciousness to realms which are ordinarily blocked out
by our physical senses. What is described
thereby, from various aspects, is the developmental path of the
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Sleep and Dreams - Rudolf Steiner
Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) called
his spiritual philosophy 'anthroposophy', meaning 'wisdom of the
human being'. As a highly developed seer, he based his work on
direct knowledge and perception of spiritual dimensions. He
initiated a modern and universal 'science of spirit', accessible to
anyone willing to exercise clear and unprejudiced thinking.
From his spiritual investigations
Steiner provided suggestions for the renewal of many activities,
including education (both general and special), agriculture,
medicine, economics, architecture, science, philosophy, religion and
the arts. Today there are literally thousands of schools, clinics,
farms and other organizations involved in practical work based on
his principles. His many published works feature his research into
the spiritual nature of the human being, the evolution of the world
and humanity, and methods of personal development. Steiner wrote
some 30 books and delivered over 6,000 lectures across Europe. In
1924 he founded the General Anthroposophical Society, which today
has branches throughout the world.
delivery within the United Kingdom and overseas.
Copyright © 2004 Skylark Books