Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Rudolf Steiner on Vaccines

“What about the smallpox vaccine? This is a peculiar case. You see, if you vaccinate someone who is an anthroposophist and has been anthroposophically trained, it does no harm. (alternative: You see, if you vaccinate someone who is an anthroposophist, or bring someone up anthroposophically, it does no harm.) It only harms those who grow up with predominantly materialistic thoughts. In this case, vaccination becomes a kind of Ahrimanic force; the person is no longer able to lift himself or herself out of certain materialistic feelings. And this is actually what is so dangerous about the smallpox vaccination, that human beings are literally permeated (durchkleidet) by a phantom (entity). The person has a phantom which prevents him/her from getting rid of soul entities out of the physical organism, as is possible in normal consciousness. He or she becomes constitutionally materialistic, and can no longer raise himself up to the spiritual. That is the danger of vaccination. Of course, it will always be about statistics, which will guide the issue. The question is precisely in these issues, whether statistics should have such a high value (importance) attached to them.

With smallpox vaccination, it is very strongly about something psychological. It cannot be ruled out that the beliefthat vaccination helps plays an incalculably large role. If humans were to replace this belief with something else, if people were brought up (educated) in a natural way, so that they could be influenced (impressed) by something else other than by vaccinating them, for example, if they were brought closer to the spiritual, it would be entirely possible to counter the unconscious intrusion (thought) - 'we have smallpox epidemic!' - what would work equally well is principally to consider how we would have to strengthen human beings against such influences - in full consciousness of this: ‘Here is a spirit entity, albeit an unwanted (spurious) spirit, against which I must maintain my own being!’ (… gegen das ich mich aufrechthalten muss!)


English translation by Christine Howard of an excerpt on small pox vaccination from:
Rudolf Steiner, Physiologisch-Therapeutisches auf Grundlage der Geisteswissenschaft (Rudolf Steiner Verlag, 1989), 287-88

"Und die Pockenimpfung? Da ist man in einem eigentümlichen Fall. Sehen Sie, wenn man jemand impft, und man hat den Betreffenden als Anthroposophen und erzieht ihn anthroposophisch, so schadet es nichts. Es schadet nur denjenigen, die mit vorzugsweise materialistischen Gedanken heranwachsen. Da wird das Impfen zu einer Art ahrimanischer Kraft; der Mensch kann sich nicht mehr erheben aus einem gewissen materialistischen Fühlen. Und das ist doch eigentlich das Bedenkliche an der Pockenimpfung, daß die Menschen geradezu mit einem Phantom durchkleidet werden. Der Mensch hat ein Phantom, das ihn verhindert, die seelischen Entitäten so weit loszukriegen vom physischen Organismus wie im normalen Bewußtsein. Er wird konstitutionell materialistisch, er kann sich nicht mehr erheben zum Geistigen. Das ist das Bedenkliche bei der Impfung. Natürlich handeltes sich darum, daß da die Statistik immer ins Feld geführt wird. Es ist die Frage, ob eben gerade in diesen Dingen auf die Statistik so viel Wert gelegt werden muß.

Bei der Pockenimpfung handelt es sich sehr stark um etwas Psychisches. Es ist durchaus nicht ausgeschlossen, daß da der Glaube, daß die Impfung hilft, eine unberechenbar große Rolle spielt. Wenn man diesen Glauben durch etwas anderes ersetzen würde, wenn man naturgemäß erziehen würde die Menschen, so daß sie beeindruckbar wären durch etwas anderes als dadurch, daß man sie impft, etwa dadurch, daß man die Menschen wiederum an den Geist näher heranbrächte, so wäre es durchaus möglich, daß man gegen das unbewußte Hereindringen: hier ist Pockenepidemie! ebenso gut wirken würde, wie man überhaupt den Menschen stark machen müßte gegen solche Einflüsse - durch vollständiges Bewußtsein davon: hier ist ein Geistiges, wenn auch ein unberechtigtes Geistiges, gegen das ich mich aufrechthalten muß! - "

In 1917, Rudolf Steiner said: 

"The time will come — and it may not be far off — when quite different tendencies will come up at a congress like the one held in 1912 and people will say: It is pathological for people to even think in terms of spirit and soul. ‘Sound’ people will speak of nothing but the body. It will be considered a sign of illness for anyone to arrive at the idea of any such thing as a spirit or a soul.People who think like that will be considered to be sick and — you can be quite sure of it —a medicine will be found for this. At Constantinople the spirit was made non-existent. The soul will be made non-existent with the aid of a drug. Taking a ‘sound point of view’, people will invent a vaccine to influence the organism as early as possible, preferably as soon as it is born, so that this human body never even gets the idea that there is a soul and a spirit.

The two philosophies of life will be in complete opposition. One movement will need to reflect how concepts and ideas may be developed to meet the reality of soul and spirit. The others, the heirs of modern materialism, will look for the vaccine to make the body ‘healthy’, that is, makes its constitution such that this body no longer talks of such rubbish as soul and spirit, but takes a 'sound' view of the forces which live in engines and in chemistry and let planets and suns arise from nebulae in the cosmos. Materialistic physicians will be asked to drive the souls out of humanity."

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“It will be the main concern of these spirits of darkness to bring confusion into the rightful elements which are now spreading on earth,and need to spread in such a way that the spirits of light can continue to be active in them. They will seek to push these in the wrong direction. I have already spoken of one such wrong direction, which is about as paradoxical as is possible. [ Note 1 ] I have pointed out that while human bodies will develop in such a way that certain spiritualities can find room in them, the materialistic bent, which will spread more and more under the guidance of the spirits of darkness, will work against this and combat it by physical means. I have told you that the spirits of darkness are going to inspire their human hosts, in whom they will be dwelling, to find a vaccine that will drive all inclination towards spirituality out of people's souls when they are still very young, and this will happen in a roundabout way through the living body. Today, bodies are vaccinated against one thing and another; in future, children will be vaccinated with a substance which it will certainly be possible to produce, and this will make them immune, so that they do not develop foolish inclinations connected with spiritual life — ‘foolish’ here, of course, in the eyes of materialists.

A beginning has already been made, though only in the literary field where it is less harmful. As I have mentioned, [ Note 2 ] learned medical experts have published books on the abnormalities of certain men of genius. As you know, attempts have been made to understand the genius of Conrad Ferdinand Meyer, Viktor Scheffel, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer and Goethe, by showing them to suffer from certain abnormalities. And the most astounding thing in this field is that people have also sought to understand Jesus Christ and the Gospels from this point of view. Two publications are now in existence in which the origins of Christianity are said to be due to the fact that at the beginning of our era there lived an individual who was mentally and psychologically abnormal; this individual went about in Palestine as Jesus Christ and infected people with Christianity.

These, as I said, are the beginnings in the field of literature. The whole trend goes in a direction where a way will finally be found to vaccinate bodies so that these bodies will not allow the inclination towards spiritual ideas to develop and all their lives people will believe only in the physical world they perceive with the senses. Out of impulses which the medical profession gained from presumption — oh, I beg your pardon, from the consumption they themselves suffered — people are now vaccinated against consumption (TB), and in the same way they will be vaccinated against any inclination towards spirituality. This is merely to give you a particularly striking example of many things which will come in the near and more distant future in this field — the aim being to bring confusion into the impulses which want to stream down to earth after the victory of the spirits of light.”

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Scarlet Fever and Measles

“In the first life-period, therefore, there is a perpetual struggle between what comes from us out of the previous incarnation and what comes from hereditary development; the two elements fight with each other. The illnesses of childhood are the expression of this fight. Just think how intimately the whole inner being of soul and spirit is bound up with the physical organization during early childhood. When the second teeth appear you can see how they push up against the first, how they still have tussles with each other, and in this same way the whole second man has tussles with the first. But within the second man there is the super-earthly being; in the first a foreign, earthly model. These two work into one another and if you observe this inter-working truly you can see how, if the inner man, who as a being of soul and spirit was present in pre-earthly existence, has too much the upper hand for a time, working into the physical very strongly and having, willy-nilly, to adjust itself by dint of effort to the model, that it damages the model by striking up against it everywhere, saying: I want to get this particular form out of you — then the fight expresses itself as scarlet fever. If the inner man is tender, so that there is a continual shrinking back, a wish to mould the in-taken substances more in accordance with their own nature, and resistance is put up to the model, the struggle comes out as measles. What is, in reality, a mutual struggle expresses itself in the illnesses of childhood. Moreover, it is only possible to understand truly what comes later if these things can be properly reckoned with.

It is, of course, very easy for the materialists to say that all this is stupid, because children still retain a likeness to their parents after the change of teeth and not only up till that time. Such talk is nonsense. The fact is that one being is weaker, directs himself more in accordance with the forces of heredity, builds up the second man with a greater resemblance to the model. This naturally comes out in the appearance, but the same thing has been going on when the being has adjusted itself more in accordance with the model. On the other hand, there are human beings who after the change of teeth become very unlike what they were before. In such cases what comes from the pre-earthly life of soul and spirit is strong and they adhere less to the model. We have therefore simply to see these things in their right connection.”

Let us take a specific case. I will construct quite an idealistic one—the true therapy of smallpox. Real smallpox calls up a very strong inspiration, with intuition as well. And the knowledge that comes to you here, when you are real therapists in this domain, works much more strongly upon you — when it is real knowledge — does a vaccination; in a different sense it works much more strongly, and in studying the therapy of smallpox as a physician you will bring about a kind of healing in yourself in advance, prophylactically, and will therefore be able, when you understand the connection, to go among smallpox patients without fear, and full of love.

Of course all these things have their other side too. As I have said, if the knowledge of a medicament is a true imaginative or inspired knowledge, then the healing forces are there; it need not even be one's own imagination, it may be that of someone else. In itself it has healing forces. Even to have the idea of a medicament has an effect, and it works. But it works only so long as you are without fear. Fear is the opposite pole to love. If you go into a sick room with fear, none of your therapeutic measures will help. If you can go into a sick room with love, without thought of yourself, if you can direct the whole of your soul to those whom you have to heal, if you can live in love, in your imaginative and inspired knowledge, then you will be able to place yourselves within the process of healing not as a knower who is a bearer of fear, but as a knower who is a bearer of love.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this.