Search for a book, or scroll down for our suggestions
Death as Metamorphosis of Life: Including "What Does the Angel Do in Our Astral Body?" & "How Do I Find Christ?" (Cw 182) (Collected Works of Rudolf Steiner #182) (Paperback)
7 Lectures, various cities, Nov. 29, 1917-Oct. 16, 1918 (CW 182)"Death as Metamorphosis of Life is a brilliant, exceptional collection. The lectures are intimate, existential, profound, and transformative: they address us in our soul lives--where we live, and where we strive for spiritual experience.... They make clear the necessary and living bond that must unite the inner work of Anthroposophists--the day-to-day inner, spiritual work in our ordinary lives--and the outer work of Anthroposophy: the manifestation of spirit in life; that is, the tasks of service that we take on in the world.... Steiner understood that, if Anthroposophy or spiritual wisdom does not live and grow as a spiritual reality in the souls of those who claim to practice it, then the practical wisdom--their actions in the world as called for by the spirit of the times--will come to nothing." -- Christopher Bamford (introduction)
The lectures in Death as Metamorphosis of Life address us in our soul life and speak to our hearts. They make clear the bond that must unite our inner, spiritual work and the outer work of manifesting spirit in life. For, if spiritual wisdom does not live and grow as a reality in the souls of those who practice it, then the practical wisdom of service called for by the spirit of the times will come to nothing.
The particular realities that Rudolf Steiner focuses on are twofold: working with the dead (and the spiritual hierarchies) and coming to know the Christ. What these two have in common is that they are both Earth-centered. They teach us the fundamental importance of everyday human destiny and earthly life--not just for humanity, but also for divinity and the cosmos. We learn not only what the dead can teach us about the spiritual world and the working of the hierarchies, but also what it means to be human in a spiritual sense. We learn of the importance of working with the dead and the angelic worlds, both for our own and for their development, as well as for the future evolution of the Earth.
The Mystery of Golgotha is equally important; we must understand it spiritually. As Steiner says, "It is the will of the gods that the most important event on Earth must compel us to spirituality." The Christ must be experienced inwardly, not historically. At the same time, he must be found on Earth--for instance, in human destiny. The more we become aware of what is secretly, invisibly, and unconsciously working in our lives, the closer we will come to working with the dead and to the kingdom of Christ.
How can we find the Christ? Steiner quotes the seventeenth-century mystic Angelus Silesius: "The Cross on Golgotha cannot save you from evil if it is not also raised within you.""The Cross is raised within us by the polarity of the powerlessness of our body and the resurrection of our spirit. There is no need for supersensory capacities to realize this experience: only humility and sincerity in seeking are required. Resurrection from the soul death of powerlessness is the true Christ experience that opens the soul to the presence of Christ. Truly, these are astonishing lectures to be treasured: to be read, reread; to be thoroughly understood as something living; to be meditated and made one's own; and to be carried as a transformative gift into the world." -- Christopher Bamford (introduction)
Death as Metamorphosis of Life is translated for the first time in its entirety from the German of Der Tod als Lebenswandlung (GA 182). Individual lectures have appeared in Angels: Selected Lectures; Evil: Selected Lectures; and Staying Connected.