Rudolf Steiner: Theosophy

(1904)

Rudolf Steiner wrote Theosophy: An Introduction to the Spiritual Processes in Human Life and in the Cosmos (1904) as part of his lifelong project to reconcile the sensory and supersensory realms in the study of the nature of human beings. These two dimensions are clearly evident from the very subtitle of the book, in which spiritual processes are perceived to be part of human life. The book identifies three spheres of existence—body, soul, and spirit, which are interdependent and structure human life. At the heart of the book lies Steiner’s reworking of the concepts of reincarnation of the spirit and karma, which the author elaborates differently from Oriental philosophies and identifies as a doctrine that could give purpose to human existence.

According to his autobiography, Steiner was aware from a very early age of the existence of the visible as well as an invisible world—the latter world with which he felt more at ease. He admits candidly to his difficulty in learning...