Thursday, September 6, 2012

APPENDIX I - Statutes (Principles) of the Anthroposophical Society

1. The Anthroposophical Society1) is to be a union of people who wish to cultivate the life of soul in the individual as well as in human society on the basis of a true knowledge of the spiritual world.

2. The nucleus of this Society consists of those persons, both the individuals and the groups who let themselves be represented, who gathered during Christmas time 1923 at the Goetheanum in Dornach. They are convinced that at present there already exists a real science of the spiritual world, elaborated over many years and of which many important volumes are already published, and that the cultivation of such a science is lacking in the present civilization. This is to be the task of the Anthroposophical Society. It will endeavor to fulfill this task by focusing its activities on the spiritual science of anthroposophy which is cultivated in the Goetheanum at Dornach, with its fruitful results for brotherhood in social life, for moral and religious life and for the artistic and spiritual life in general within the being of man.*

3. The persons gathered together in Dornach as the nucleus of the Society recognize and support the view of the leadership of the Goetheanum, represented by the Council formed at the foundation meeting, with respect to the following: "Anthroposophy cultivated at the Goetheanum leads to results which can be beneficial to every human being, without distinction of nation, social standing or religion, as an incentive in spiritual life. These results can give rise to a social life based in a real sense on brotherly love. Adopting them as a basis of life is not dependent on a scientific degree of learning, but only on unbiased human nature. Research underlying these results and professional judgment concerning them, however, are subject to the spiritual scientific training, which is to be acquired step by step. These results are in their own way no less exact than the results achieved by Natural Science. When they likewise attain general recognition, they will bring about a similar progress in all spheres of life, not just in the spiritual, but also in the practical domain."

4. The Anthroposophical Society is not a secret society, but an entirely public one. Anyone without distinction of nationality, religion, scientific or artistic creed or conviction can become a member who considers the existence of such an institution as the Goetheanum in Dornach, Free School of Spiritual Science, to be justified. The Anthroposophical Society rejects any kind of sectarianism. Politics it does not consider to be among its tasks.

5. The Anthroposophical Society regards the Free School of Spiritual Science as a center of its work. 4 This School will consist of three classes. Members of the Society will upon application be admitted after a period of membership to be determined in each case by the direction of the Goetheanum. They thus gain entrance to the first class of the Free School of Spiritual Science. Applicants will be received into the second or third class respectively when the direction at the Goetheanum deem them suitable for admission. 5

6.  Every member of the Anthroposophical Society has the right to participate, under conditions to be made known by the Council, in all lectures, performances and meetings of any kind organized by the Society.

7. The establishment of the Free School of Spiritual Science is in the first place incumbent on Rudolf Steiner who is to appoint his co-workers and his eventual successor.

8. All publications of the Society shall be open to the public as is the case in other public societies.** The publications of the Free School of Spiritual Science will not be exempt from this public availability; however, the direction of the School reserves the right from the outset to challenge the validity of every judgment on these works, that is not based on the schooling of which the works themselves are the outcome. In this sense the direction, as is altogether customary in the recognized scientific world, will acknowledge the validity of no judgment that is not based on the appropriate preliminary studies. Therefore the publications of the Free School of Spiritual Science will contain the following annotation: "Printed in manuscript for the members of the Free School of Spiritual Science, Goetheanum, Class ... No person is held qualified to form a judgment on these works who has not, through the School itself or in an equivalent manner recognized by it, acquired the preliminary knowledge advanced by the School. Other opinions will in so far be rejected as the authors of these works in question will not enter into any type of discussion concerning them." 6

9. The goal of the Anthroposophical Society will be the furtherance of spiritual-scientific research; that of the Free School of Spiritual Science the performance of this research itself. Dogmatism in any field whatsoever shall be excluded from the Anthroposophical Society.

10. The Anthroposophical Society holds a regular General Meeting every year in which the Council shall submit a full account of its activities. The agenda shall be made known by the Council together with the invitation to all members six weeks before the meeting. The Council may summon extra-ordinary General Meetings and fix the agenda for such Meetings. The invitations to the members shall be sent by the Council three weeks in advance. Motions by individual members or groups of members are to be sent in eight days before the date of the General Meeting. A certain number of members, to be determined from time to time by the by-laws, have the right to demand at any time an extra-ordinary General Meeting.7

11. The members can join together in smaller or larger groups on any geographical or thematic field of activity. The Anthroposophical Society has its seat at the Goetheanum. From there the Council is to convey to the members or the groups what it considers to be the task of the Society. It enters into social intercourse with the officials elected or appointed by the individual groups. The individual groups take care of the admission of members; however the confirmation in writing thereof should be submitted to the Council in Dornach and in confidence in the officials signed by the former. In general every member should join a group; only whoever finds it quite impossible to gain admission to a group should apply for admission as a member in Dornach itself. 8)
12. The subscription shall be fixed by the individual groups; each group however has to send 15 Francs per member to the central direction at the Goetheanum.

13. Each working group draws up its own statutes, but these must not be incompatible with the statutes of the Anthroposophical Society.

14. The organ of the Society is the weekly Goetheanum, which for this purpose shall appear with a supplement containing the official communiqués of the Society. This enlarged edition of the Goetheanum will only be supplied to members of the Anthroposophical Society.

15. The founding Council will be: 9)
            President:                                 Dr Rudolf Steiner
            Vice-president:                         Albert Steffen
            First secretary:                         Dr Ita Wegman
            Assessors:                                Marie Steiner
                                                            Dr Elizabeth Vreede
            Second secretary and
            Treasurer                                 Dr Guenther Wachsmuth

1 Some notes have been added by the translator in view of the movement afoot to revise these statutes, now called principles, in such a manner that they can again be used as actual statutes for a reborn Anthroposophical Society. 
* The Anthroposophical Society is continuous with the Anthroposophical Society founded in 1912, but for the goals set at that time it wants to create an independent point of departure that is in keeping with the spirit of the time. (Original note from 1923).
4 The official translation of these statutes by G. Adams in The Life, Nature and Cultivation of Anthroposophy, Rudolf  Steiner Press, copyright 1963 by The Anthroposophical Society in Great Britain (where they are steadfastly called Principles of the General Anthroposophical Society, even though the original reads statutes of the Anthroposophical Society) reads the center of its work, instead of a center. This may seem a minor point, but it is not, because the original formulation leaves possibilities open that other centers could spring up in the course of time where the spirit of the Goetheanum prevails.  Update: In the new edition of this book (Rudolf Steiner Press, London, 1996), the term General Anthroposophical Society has only been kept for the first two statutes; after that it is Anthroposophical Society.
5 Here an amendment is needed to state that Rudolf Steiner, without having named a successor, died in 1925, and that subsequently he was unable to complete the second and third class. This means that there is no institutional continuity of the Free School for Spiritual Science and that all actions performed in the name of this School must be rigorously checked by those involved on their congruity with the leadership of the spiritual Goetheanum, Rudolf Steiner, on the basis of direct contact or on the many indications he left in his work. See for further valuable suggestions in this direction the essay on the spiritual and social significance of the ‘principles’ (not yet translated) by Herbert Witzenmann.    
** The conditions for entering a path of schooling have also been made open to the general public and shall continue to be made available. (Original note from 1923).
6 This central article has never properly been understood and consequently observed. Right after the Christmas Conference many esoteric lectures by Rudolf Steiner were namely issued without the required moral protection of the annotation of the Free School and since the founding of the Rudolf Steiner Nachlassverwaltung (Administration of Rudolf Steiner’s Estate) by M. Steiner in 1943, it completely disappeared as such from the editions of this body. The significance and consequences of this have been discussed in the previous pages, it must however be dealt with and solved before a reborn Anthroposophical Society can in fact adopt these principles’ as her statutes.  
7 This last sentence is still missing from the official version of the ‘principles’ as well as from the official translations, even though it was added by Rudolf Steiner and endorsed by the members during the Christmas Conference. It supplies namely a legal basis for members to hold an extra-ordinary General Meeting, even though the number or percentage of members needed to call such a meeting was not listed in the fragment found of the original by-laws. 
8 The G. Adams translation reads: “Membership shall be applied for in writing and can be obtained through admission by the Executive at Dornach; each card of membership has to be signed by the President of the Society.” This centralist procedure for becoming a member is borrowed from paragraph 4 of the statutes of the G.A.S.: “Membership is granted by the Vorstand on the basis of a written application.” This is one of the places where the attempt to artificially amalgamate the two originally distinct anthroposophical bodies becomes visible. That the Anthroposophical Society was indeed a distinct entity is borne out by the fact that according to Swiss Civil Law (ZGB) it was a legal person, because it had written statutes and an elected Council. It did not need to be commercially registered, because it undertook no commercial activities. This was different for the association G.A.S. consisting of an administrative body, a building association, a publishing company and a medical clinic. For this purpose the ‘principles’ were not at all designed, and to discard them with the argument that they were not suitable for an economic association, as is sometimes argued, is completely misleading. See the Kardeiz Saga introduction to this fifth edition how to restore the Anthroposophical Society to its original state in order to realize its original mission. Update: in the new edition (1996) the sentences on membership have been corrected.
9 This paragraph was missing in the translation by G. Adams. It also will have to be amended: with the names of the future members of the Council under whom the Anthroposophical Society is restored to its original nature with possible amendments.

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