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Awake! For the Sake of the Future (CW 220)

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The implications of the worldview that arises from Anthroposophy—the life’s work of Rudolf Steiner—are both primary and far-reaching. More nuanced than any remotely comparable approach, his work not only suggests the need for a fundamental alteration of our deeply ingrained tendency to accept passively the received wisdom of staid conventionality, it also provides the concrete framework—for anyone with the will to do so—to wake up to reality in an entirely new way. In short, this work and its implications are, therefore, both radical and possibly quite powerful. If this were not true, Anthroposophy would have no real impact and no real enemies. However, this has not been the case. 


On New Year’s Eve 1922/23, the (first) Goetheanum—an architectural marvel and the “House of the Word” intended to stand as the fully realized physical, artistic embodiment of Anthroposophy on Earth—was deliberately destroyed by fire. This was an unfathomably heavy blow to Steiner and the entire anthroposophic movement. Afterward, however, he was adamant that not a single lecture or event scheduled to take place at the destroyed Goetheanum should be canceled or postponed. He himself carried on with an even more determined—indeed, fiery—resolve. 


The course of lectures in this book began on January 5, 1923, as living testament to that resolve. As truly relevant today as they were in 1923—probably more so—this volume is an exceptionally urgent, heartfelt articulation of what could be considered Steiner’s core message and plea to modern humanity—simply put, for the sake of the future, wake up! 


Awake! For the Sake of the Future is a translation from German of Lebendiges Naturerkennen. Intellektueller Sündenfall und spirituelle Sündenerhebung (GA 220). Cover image: A man stands amid the burned out ruins of the (first) Goetheanum, January, 1923. 

  • Lectures by Rudolf Steiner
  • Translated by Jann W. Gates
  • Introduction by Jann W. Gates
  • 246 pages
  • 6" x 9"
  • Published 2015
  • Paperback