9 lectures, Berlin, October 14-December 9, 1909 (CW 58)
A previous translation of this work: Metamorphoses of the Soul: Paths of Experience, vol. 1.
In a key series of lectures on personal development, Rudolf Steiner explains that the central mission of spiritual science is to enable people to ascend, in full consciousness, to knowledge of spiritual realities. But, given that the means to achieve spiritual perception are now widely available, there is the danger that some individuals will gain access to the spiritual world whilst harboring impure motives. This can lead to a distorted understanding and vision of that world. Steiner’s emphasis, therefore, is on the preparatory steps— the metamorphosis and purification of the human soul—required for achieving true spiritual enlightenment. Life itself teaches and prepares us for progress, and Anthroposophy explains and brings this to consciousness.
In some of his most lucid lectures, Steiner describes the missions of anger, truth and reverence, the significance of human character, the meaning of asceticism and illness, and the phenomenon of egoism. He also clarifies the differences between Buddhism and Christianity, describes the goal of spiritual science, and makes some esoteric observations about the moon. Throughout the talks Steiner refers to many significant historical figures, including St Augustine, Coleridge, Leonardo da Vinci, Madame Blavatsky, Goethe, Homer, and Shakespeare.
This volume is a translation of Metamorphosen des Seelenlebens - Pfade der Seelenerlebnisse: Erster Teil (CW 58).
Written by Rudolf Steiner
Translated by Charles Davy and Christian von Arnim
Revised by Pauline Wehrle
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