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|Anthroposophy teaches that Negroes [sic] are at a baby stage of development, Asians are at an adolescent stage, and only whites are adults; it also teaches that while an individual's potential may be limited by his race, an individual's soul will reincarnate many times throughout the races. Steiner lectured in Germany, 1922: "If the blonds and blue-eyed people die out, the human race will become increasingly dense if men do not arrive at a form of intelligence that is independent of blondness."|
Wendy - aspiring Waldorf handwork teacher, computer geek's wife ,
mom to former 2lb preemie (now 9) & 3x
not to bring in debate, and certainly make your own decisions on the matter, but the anthroposophical society asserts that steiner does not denote a racial heirarchy of any sort, and in fact advocated the opposite. here is a document by an internal commission to discuss these issues. the wiki article also has information about how the nazi regime denounced anthroposophy because it was distinctly not nationalist, not racist, and not anti-semetic. (also described in the wiki article).
what was described in the writings is a concept of the evolution of man, much like darwinism. essentially, we started in the "cradle of life" with Lucy et al (primitive humans) and then over time, travelled across continents, with biological structures changing and/or evolving in adaptation. it is, biologically/evolutionarily speaking, true that white people are a "younger" or "newer" race. in the context of his time, this would be denoted by terms such as "primitive"--but it does not presume any form of hierarchy as it does today, and in fact, stiener specifically spoke against hierarchy of race, nationality, and even religious function, and so on.
the underlying idea of steiner's philosophy is individual responsibility, individual freedom, and a breaking down of barriers between individuals based on any given topic (no us-them dialectic).
in the early 1900s, this was a particularly radical idea all things considered. today, looking back and looking at the language of "primitive" it seems like racism when it is, in fact, not racist.
within anthroposophy, all are welcome and seen and treated as equals.