"I knew from the first 100 pages that I was going to be enthralled with this story, and so I was, right to the end. I literally couldn't put it down. Of course, it doesn't seem like the end because I still want to know more about Hope.
The loving portraits of the author’s two children were the highlight for me. Why that is so, I don't know. Perhaps the honesty about motherhood.
It is a fine adult-Christian book and should enjoy a wide readership." Mary Razzell, Author
After twenty-six-year-old Australian David Carpenter, a psychiatrist and neurological researcher himself, had a breakdown in his first year at Cambridge, his therapist told him, “Go into the Anglican Chaplaincy, investigate Christianity, and have a love-affair with a nice Christian girl.” He did precisely that.
Diana was only twenty. They grew so close that when, after four years, she married someone else, he returned home devastated. They did not meet again for eight years. He realised then that he still loved her, and she him. He asked her to break her marriage for him. Instead, she sent him away indefinitely.
In her last letter she begged him to give her up. She said that Oxford had rejected her dissertation. She was thirty-three, with her academic career now shattered.
This is the poignant true story of three hyper-intelligent, cosmopolitan, and highly-educated people fighting their way through to genuine faith, hope and love in the modern world.
Krehbiel-Darmstädter (1892–1943), who was killed at Auschwitz, was a highly
gifted pupil of Rudolf Steiner and a member of The Christian Community. Born
into a Jewish family in Mannheim, she was deported to Gurs camp in the
Pyrénées on October 22, 1940, where she survived harsh conditions and helped
many of her fellow inmates. Following temporary sick-leave (under police
supervision) in Limonest near Lyon, and a failed attempt to flee to
Switzerland, she was brought to Drancy transit camp near Paris before being
taken to Auschwitz.<p>This book offers unique testimony of an
individual rooted in esoteric Christianity and Spiritual Science who found
sources of inner resistance during one of history’s darkest periods. As the
portrait of a highly ethical and sorely tried woman amid catastrophic
conditions, it describes her existential efforts to summon powers of
concentration, meditation, and dedication to others, showing how these
continued to inform her outlook and actions to the very end.<p>Polish
Jews in Drancy referred to Maria Krehbiel-Darmstädter as Mère Maria. They
experienced her distinctive spirituality and personal qualities and a
profound religiosity that retained an inner connection with the Christian
sacramental world, even in the most desolate circumstances.<p>From Gurs
to Auschwitwitz adds an important voice to literature on the Holocost and
shines a light on the nature of spiritual, inner resistance during the dark
years of World War II in Europe.
Wegman spent the last three years of her life in Tessin, in the Casa Andrea
Cristoforo. In this secluded province, largely protected from the destructive
events of those years and imbued with certain forces, she developed a great
work for the future, gathering, leading, and nurturing people both
therapeutically and spiritually, preparing for the war’s end with the full
intensity of her being. Her last three years were a period of devotion to
Rudolf Steiner and his work, as well as to esoteric Christianity—to the
forces of the Archangel Michael and to Christ for the present and future. She
continued to take a great interest in the difficulties of her time and never
ceased to participate in events—taking in refugee children and the homeless,
keeping up extensive correspondences with others, struggling with aid
organizations and various agencies, caring daily for the afflicted and for
patients and colleagues. On March 4, 1943, Ita Wegman passed into the
spiritual worlds, well prepared and with all of the spiritual intentions of a
Christian initiate. This book contributes to documenting the final phase of
Ita Wegman’s life, focusing on the forces of the future that emerged in her.
It draws on her notebooks from her time in Ascona, as well as from her
extensive correspondence and memories of those who lived and worked at Casa
Andrea Cristoforo. She remained upstanding, free, and positive with an
esoteric Christian orientation and felt that she was obligated only to her
conscience and to the spiritual world for which Rudolf Steiner stood and that
she served. This book was originally published in German as «Die letzten drei
Jahre. Ita Wegman in Ascona 1940–1943» (Verlag am Goetheanum, Dornach,
1933 to 1935, Ita Wegman was confronted by both Nazi fascism and internal
crises in the General Anthroposophical Society. During those years, she
traveled to Palestine in the fall of 1934 following a grave illness that
nearly ended with her death. Her correspondence during this period, as well
as her notes on the trip, reveal the great biographical importance to her of
these travels and indeed the whole scope of her spiritual experiences in
1934. Ita Wegman had unambiguous perspectives and a uniquely clear view of
both the political threat and her social-spiritual task during this period.
There was, however, a radical change in her inner stance toward the
opposition, aggression, and defamation she encountered within anthroposophic
contexts in reaction to her intense, purely motivated efforts. She tried to
live and work in true accord with her inner impulses and, ultimately, with
Rudolf Steiner’s legacy, especially within the anthroposophic movement. Doing
so, she increasingly found her way to her own distinctive and uncompromising
path. The author reveals the general nature of those three years—a period
whose distinctive spiritual and Christological task and dramatic dangers
Rudolf Steiner had foreseen in 1923: “If these men [the Nazis] gain government
power, I will no longer be able to set foot on German soil.” Ita Wegman’s
efforts in 1933 to confront the dark powers of National Socialism and the
convulsions in Dornach, which she experienced firsthand, as well as her
subsequent illness and the clarity of her “Christological conversion” in 1934
to ’35, reveal a very specific, intrinsically comprehensible and
forward-looking quality whose spiritual signature is clearly prefigured in
Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual-scientific predictions. In this book, Peter Selg
focuses exclusively on Ita Wegman, her development, and her words, simply
presenting the processes she went through and, implicitly, their
extraordinary spiritual nature, without any attempt at interpretation. This
focus arises from the governing premise that the mysteries of a great life
such as that of Ita Wegman reveal themselves in the details. Tracing the
subtle steps in her life allow us deeper insight into Ita Wegman’s being. She
herself wrote, “In general meetings or gatherings, people always understood
me poorly because I lacked a smooth way of expressing myself. But people of
goodwill always understood what I meant.” This book was originally published
in German as Geistiger Widerstand und Überwindung. Ita Wegman 1933–1935 by
Verlag am Goetheanum, Dornach, Switzerland, 2005.
related studies, Peter Selg tracks the groundbreaking of the first Goetheanum
on September 20, 1913, in the context of what is known as the “Michael
movement,” the primary active impulse brought by Rudolf Steiner in 1924,
which explicitly indicates the anthroposophic movement and its official
society. The author shows the fundamental importance of this beginning in
Dornach. He illuminates the fateful goal of the “School for Spiritual
Science” through Rudolf Steiner’s karma lectures, not only providentially in
the sense that it involved individualities, but also with regard to the
future development of human civilization. This monograph builds on Peter
Selg's book Rudolf Steiner's Foundation Stone Meditation: And the Destruction
of the Twentieth Century and Sergei O. Prokofieff's Rudolf Steiner's
Sculptural Group: A Revelation of the Spiritual Purpose of Humanity and the
Earth. Originally published in German as Grundstein zur Zukunft. Vom
Schicksal der Michael-Gemeinschaft (Verlag des Ita Wegman Instituts, 2013).
The interest in Rudolf Steiner’s person and essence, in his attitude toward life and work, will continue to grow in the decades and centuries that lie ahead, both within and outside the anthroposophical movement. It will take hold of entirely different groups of people, including those who come with spiritual questions or discover them in times of need. Rudolf Steiner’s work grew to be “one unique effort of bringing courage to human beings” (Michael Bauer).
This is the first of seven comprehensive volumes on Rudolf Steiner’s “being, intentions, and journey.” It presents Rudolf Steiner from childhood and youth through his doctorate degree and up to the time of his work for the Goethe Archives as editor of Goethe’s scientific writings. By considering his formative years in depth, we come to understand better the roots and development of Rudolf Steiner’s later spiritual research and teachings.
This volume is a translation from German of the first three chapters of Rudolf Steiner. 1861 - 1925: Lebens- und Werkgeschichte. Band 1: 1861 - 1914 (Ita Wegman Institut, 2012).