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Spiritualism, Madame Blavatsky, and Theosophy

An Eyewitness View of Occult History

November 2002
More details
  • Publisher
  • Published
    11th November 2002
  • ISBN 9780880104951
  • Language English
  • Pages 288 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"

Selections from the Works of Rudolf Steiner

Without the spiritualist movement and the amazing personality of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, the creator of the Theosophical Society, the spiritual revolution of the twentieth century—the so-called New Age, with all its movers and shakers—would be unimaginable. And the work of Rudolf Steiner, G.I. Gurdjieff, René Guénon, Hazrat Inayat Khan, Sri Aurobindo, R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz, and C.G. Jung could not have become what it was. 

In this fascinating volume on the Theosophical movement, Rudolf Steiner, one of its primary participants, tells his story in his own words. We are told of the origins of the theosophical movement in spiritualism and somnambulism. We are given Steiner's own version of the relationship between Anthroposophy and Theosophy through his White Lotus Day Lectures, given over several years on the anniversary of Madame Blavatsky's death. 

Steiner then moves into the realm of occult history, where he relates Theosophy to its historical ground in Western esotericism, especially Rosicrucianism. He reveals events from the seventeenth century that led to the emergence of Freemasonry and other secret societies, as well as the hidden history of the creation of Theosophy in the nineteenth century and the conflicts that still reverberate today between the Anglo-Saxon and Germanic occult streams.


Introduction by Christopher Bamford
Prologue: A Personal Statement (from “The Barr Document”)

PART ONE: Spiritualism, Somnambulism, and Theosophy

1. Theosophy and Spiritualism
2. Theosophy and Somnambulism
3. The History of Spiritualism
4. The History of Hypnotism

PART TWO: White Lotus Day Lectures
in Honor of the Anniversary of the Death of Madame Blavatsky

5. The Return of the Mysteries
6. Remembering Madame Blavatsky
7. Christ and the Further Development of Consciousness
8. Ancient Wisdom and the Heralding of the Christ Impulse

PART THREE: Hidden Aspects of Occult History

9. Materialism and Occultism
10. The Founding of the Theosophical Society
11. The Significance of the Eighth Sphere
12. More on the Eight Sphere
13. Some Background to the Role of Madame Blavatsky
14. Occult Brotherhoods
15. Madame Blavatsky’s Occult Imprisonment

PART FOUR: From Theosophy to Anthroposophy

16. Homeless Souls
17. The Unveiling of Spiritual Truths
18. The Opposition to Spiritual Revelations
19. Spiritual Truths and the Physical World
20. The Decline of the Theosophical Society
21. The Emergence of the Anthroposophical Movement

Rudolf Steiner

Rudolf Steiner (b. Rudolf Joseph Lorenz Steiner, 1861–1925) was born in the small village of Kraljevec, Austro-Hungarian Empire (now in Croatia), where he grew up. As a young man, he lived in Weimar and Berlin, where he became a well-published scientific, literary, and philosophical scholar, known especially for his work with Goethe’s scientific writings. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he began to develop his early philosophical principles into an approach to systematic research into psychological and spiritual phenomena. Formally beginning his spiritual teaching career under the auspices of the Theosophical Society, Steiner came to use the term Anthroposophy (and spiritual science) for his philosophy, spiritual research, and findings. The influence of Steiner’s multifaceted genius has led to innovative and holistic approaches in medicine, various therapies, philosophy, religious renewal, Waldorf education, education for special needs, threefold economics, biodynamic agriculture, Goethean science, architecture, and the arts of drama, speech, and eurythmy. In 1924, Rudolf Steiner founded the General Anthroposophical Society, which today has branches throughout the world. He died in Dornach, Switzerland.