A quote from Paracelsus, “From the Zodiac come the veritable secrets of God. The star angels are transmitters and flowers become symbols of their communications. The closer our communion with the angels, the deeper will be our sense of the mysteries of the plant kingdom, and the greater our realization of the spiritual ministry of the world of flowers.”
On perceiving the violet: when one perceives a violet, by the violet’s comeliness and grace, do so admonish and set up in us an equivalent of truth and purity within our conscience, so that by their beauty, charm and grace, exquisite scent and form, no matter whom the beholder – even should he be a criminal – do so fulfill that perception that that person cannot be other than pure and comely.
Statistically, the whole of the plant world is responsible for our life. No animals, no birds, no insects, no fish – nothing that lives – can live for one day, or one hour, without the whole of the plant world. We overlook this. All life exists upon the giving of the plant world, including man, completely. There is nothing that we have – our shoes, our clothes, our ceilings, our curtains, our house, all of the things that we have, that we eat, that we live with, all the things that the birds live with, the nests, the food, the animals, the insects, everything, every single thing that we have is given us by plant life. And not only is it given to us as a giving, it is also a forgiving, for in that giving of fruitiousness is also the forgiving… that whatever we do; how ever we mis-perform, when we sully the air and pollute the water, those plants restore the defiled air and polluted water back into fresh, and they give us out of idée (1), fresh thought.
All of this then is interrelated. The word “biodynamic” enters which Steiner invented (2), which came out of the Greek, which came out of the Phoenicians, which came out of the ancient Persians,out of the Egyptians, and out of the Chinese, ad infinitum, but that word concerns this intense relationship and dis-relationship, inclination and declination, day and night, black and white, ‘yes’ and ‘no’, good and bad…. Relationship and Dis-Relationship.
The fact today that the ministries, that the matters concerning peoples and governments, are concerned with and say generally, “Oh yes, yes, I know all that, but how do we feed the millions?” What is food? What happens when you put something into that curious hole in your face after it drops down on the kitchen table? Food is not eating something. When you go to the seaside for a holiday and breathe in the fresh ozone air, you are fed. When you go to a concert or a symphony, you are fed. You breathe through your skin and of course you feed through your spirit, your mind and your body. But this matter still constitutes us, that we pop something into our mouth and it feeds us. We have lost origins. This food is a sacrament. It can never be a utility! It is a sacrament. It is an exquisite matter that concerns desire to destiny.
What actually happens of course, as you know, is that you turn one thing into another. (Metamorphosis) That in eating food there are matters within you which can take that food and turn it into something else, and the answer is: energy, God.
How exquisite is the thought that a bee can only go to the toilet by flying towards the sun. How wonderful it is that when somebody leans against the porch pillar in the morning, and breathes in and says, “Oh, how exquisite!”, it is the toilet of the morning. How wonderful are these matters of manures, which we are inclined to derogate.
All of this matter of the plants then, is a performance. It is a performance with the plants as it is within us, of turning one thing into another. Energy. God. And it is an obedience of the plants; an utter obedience and a reverence.
What an incredible matter that in the days of lords and barons, when they made dungeons and put their brothers and their enemies into the dungeons to die by the damp and the dark – that they would indeed die from the lack of fresh air very shortly – but that in that inception of the whole creation of the divine conception of God, there grows lyngbya muralis (3), a tiny little plant suddenly grows on the (dungeon) wall and nobody has planted the seed – nobody – and the little plant begins to breathe in the pernicious air of the dungeon culprit, and restores the air to fresh air; and the prisoner does not die. This performance can be looked upon as nothing but angelic. It is an angelic performance of the plant world; angels performing.
There are all of those plants that perform in the middle of winter in the snow, in the middle of summer, in the middle of equinoctial spring and in the middle of equinoctial autumn, (there are) those (plants) that bloom at night, that as the darkness comes on the scent turns on, and as the dawn is coming, the scent turns off; the day bloomers and the night bloomers…black and white, yes and no. “I love” and “I hate”; it is all in interrelationship and a performance of the angelic plants that is a creation with man. It concerns a ritual: the ritual of their obedience … for you would perceive how even a toad stool will come up through the tarred pavement. A fern will crack the wall. The potamogeton – which will purify water when it is stagnant for you to drink and the numerous plants, endless plants, that will turn perniciousness into purity, (they) all perform regardless and therefore is a ritual, a ritual to the four seasons. We call it spring, summer, autumn and winter and we leave it there. And we talk about Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday …and “Please tell me, what is the time?”, as though it were all invented by us – in words – in the educative schools. Every bit of it is utterly real. Every bit of it comes out of the whole cosmic world, and is related by the stars, by the plants, and married into atmosphere in which we live and breathe and magnify…. or…… the reverse.
The potamogeton – the little pondweed – which when water is stagnant that you cannot drink, will restore that water to drinkability in two days or less. And the plant which grows here along the roadsides considerably, that I’ve noticed – eupatorium cannabinum (hemp agrimony) – here is a plant that if you have mold in the flour and place that plant within it, the mold will depart. If your bread is moldy and you cannot eat it, place that plant within the bread, and you can eat it in a few days.
You all know that every herb in the world – there is a herb for every single ailment, pain, ache, misapprehension, lethargy, and even thought up disease. (Laughter)
All of that matter of the plant world, then, grows out of what we call soil. Rubbish! It grows out of atmosphere, and soil and atmosphere are one! And we talk about soil as though it were “dirt”. And it’s a magic. The soil is more vital, more full of life than all of the plants are. It is much more easily bruised when it is damp, and you must not walk upon it when it is wet or damp. You must indeed not cultivate it at the wrong times. Soil is the skin of the earth, the most delicate skin of the earth, and the plants are the raiment of the skin of the earth. And the whole thing is a performance, and it is governed not by soil statistics of 6-6-6. [Alan is referring to NPK ratios of chemical agriculture.] All soil is beautiful soil and all airs are beautiful airs! It is governed by revolutionibus (4), the performance of the mathematics of God, which are readable in the stars, which are readable in the plants, and they both reciprocate and inform by the reflection of their performances; and they are utterly obedient and utterly reverent. We have lost this; we have lost this whole sense of touch.
Robert Graves spoke in Massachusetts, and he said, “The decline of a true taste for food is the beginning of a decline in a national culture as a whole. When people have lost their authentic personal taste, they lose their personality and become the instruments of other peoples’ wills.”
This plant world is an angelic force. It is not for sale! Horticulture, the garden, is agriculture and there is no difference. The entire system is exactly the same and cannot be separated; the only difference is an absurdity that agriculture has been turned into an industry. The whole of horticulture is agriculture. When a horticulturalist has learned to manage an acre, he might manage two acres, he then might manage ten (acres), and the family might manage twenty, and they then might manage one hundred and it suddenly becomes agriculture.
In this line of thought then, Xenophon, the great Greek whom Socrates pronounced as a leader of the Greek people, and therefore Socrates demanded and asked Xenophon to write essays so the people should know the idealisms of classicism.
And so Xenophon wrote an essay at that time called Oikos Nomia, (Oeconomicus). And, how interesting that that word has become “economy”. And he wrote in this essay that “Oikosnomia” is the management of the family in the home in the garden. There is no other economy. Outside that, it is not economical. The moment you want to run twenty acres for industry for sale, it is not economical. The whole of Nature – life into death into life – has no waste. Everything goes into something else and is balanced. It all balances. You do not have to create falsities to get rid of falsities. They inter-balance. The whole garden, the home, the family is constituted with the birds, the spiders, the snakes, the animals, with all of the things that are divinely created, and must be comprehended and not known.
Plato said in his greatest statement of the utmost simplicity, “I do not know….but … I do perceive.” And the whole depth of that is the statement in the garden. You do not know. We never know. Knowledge is not something. Knowledge is part of a journey and is forever, and is changing; everything is changing!
Nothing In Nature is static. The whole of the Secundus Mobile, the Primum Mobile, and the aethereal world that we cannot see, is all revolving. None of it is static. Not one hour is ever like another hour, nor one moment like another moment, nor is any year ever like any other year. They are cycles. And the whole attitude of the verbosity of man today in his education has absolutely imprisoned him into a falsity of viewing – that there is such a thing as an hour by a watch and that it begins and ends.
And the whole presentiment, of this attitude to the garden is the attitude of truth, that brings perception, that is not in verbosity and that is not in words in the mind. The mind is a corridor between the birth of the invisible and the coming to life of the visible. Goethe expressed it so precisely when he said that all seed – children – birth, is the utmost idée (5) and the least metamorphosis, and that all plants are the utmost metamorphosis and the least idée. And with that he added, in conjunction, that reason and intellect will never tell you the truth. Only idée. That I have discovered – forgive me for saying “I” – it has been discovered within me, being here, that this is so deeply held. I have never yet, wherever I have tried to bring this garden project, found the instrument of the people of the leadership that held this vision, that held this matter concerning idée, image to be told, to listen, to discover and not to know, but as Plato said, “To perceive!”
Can it not then be visualized, that if the whole of this plant world is indeed an angelic performance – and we will go so far very shortly to look into the performance of what that is obeying – that we cannot refute, that it is not and can never be an industry! The whole of gardening, of horticulture and agriculture is a craft, and all craft is art, and is never industry and cannot be commercialized. You cannot truly sell the gifts of Nature. We must give it! We must share it. We must live in it, and it is then a true part of us.
And in this enters the whole matter of fairy story, legend and fable, which is the very basis of this [horticultural] education – especially myth. The whole myth of Psyche, of Persephone, which goes deeply beyond the construction of man’s mind. He cannot think it out. It is not even a belief. And in that, I reiterate that great matter that concerns the Greek period. If you would say that the Greek dynasty of ancient times lasted roughly 1,500 years – 1,000 years which led up to the period of Alexander – and during that 1,000 years, they did not believe in myth. They lived it. They did not believe it, they lived it! It was after Alexander had conquered King Darius, and the East and parts of China, that the Greeks had become selfish; they had become centered to their appropriations of themselves, and had lost the friendship of a unanimity being spread into areas that they could not cover [govern], and hold that friendship. Now during the 500 years that followed, poets and writers started writing about a belief in mythology. And that grew and grew until today it has become a thinking about a thinking, about a thinking about a belief in something!
But myth is not with us. And the whole of this matter concerns sacrifice, which here [in this community] is so strongly alluded to as “service/servant”, which is so real. There is no thinking about myth. You cannot connive in your mind in words whether you believe in myths – it’s there! – and if you don’t believe in it, you don’t live, you are not alive. And the same concerning sacrifice. It is a life force, a part of energy.
And if you feel that all of this is removed from the garden, you must begin to perceive that one is leading into the vision of what the whole plant world, the revolutionibus, the stars, and the earth, the air, and all of the pure waters – that they are all One! They are part of a whole great life-stream that cannot be separated. Therefore, the whole of humanity is a part of this and cannot ever truly be divorced from it. When man tries to divorce himself from it – it is exactly the same thing as fear. When you fear a snake, you kill the snake out of your fear. And what have you done? You cannot kill a snake. Snakes are forever. So what have you done, then? You have killed something inside yourself. You have got to relive through this by “Concentro, Medito, Contemplo” (6) and discover the truth. When this has suddenly happened (inside you), you have completely changed and the snake is alive, and there is no more suffering.
This, then, is the garden. This is “Pardae”, park, which in Persian is paradise. Paradise is what we are to make, but in making it, do you see how carefully we need to tread? The books, the manuscripts, the 6-6-6 in the soil; you do this and you do that….what food do you give hydrangeas? How terribly easy it is to fall into these traps of the words of the mind. In this garden, I beg you to have at least one day a week – the day of Venus, Friday – where there is no talking. It is in the secrets of the garden – for the garden is all secrets – it is all mystery forever. Nobody “knows” it…if you live for a thousand years you know less then when you began because you “know” so much more. It is full of secrets. The garden is utterly full of mystery and it cannot be solved in words. [But] it is utterly solvable. As Plato says, “I do not know, but I do perceive.”
And in this performance then, with the plants, is the whole importance of our labour, our service, our obedience, our reverence and our sacrifice. For this is part of our destiny. It is this matter concerning destiny which is so vital in the garden … that all of the enjoyment of will and desire, reason and intellect – in other words – are delicious if they are led by the obedience to destiny, but will and desire without obedience to destiny is without God, and the whole obedience of the plant world is obedience to that destiny and is in conjunct with spring, summer, autumn and winter …. which is what? It is the Four Archangels, the four great archangels who pass the goblet of the Grail from one to the other, in their performance of obedience.
Michael who mounts in the autumn, and goes with the iron to slay the dragon back into the depths. Declination! Down, down, down into the depths of the earth. To slay the dragon – “drago” – and why? Because Uriel, the summer, has given to the whole of humanity through the plant world more than it can tolerate. The fruits! The flowers! The seeds! The capacity has wiped him over the face and he is blinded by the Luciferic [upper astrality; see Rudolf Steiner’s works] and he is lost in the mind into the upper regions and has lost his balance. This cornucopia of giving is too much. It is too utterly overwhelming and it must be followed by Michael’s descending to bring back the balances … that Gabriel shall bring the birth, the child. And out of that winter of dormancy shall come the ascension of Raphael, dawn, Aurora, spring…renewal and new life.
It was long before Christianity that the festival of Aurora was held, and it became known by its name today simply because its ancient name could not be gotten rid of because so established was the great festival of Aurora, Ascension, “Aeostro”. Therefore, Aeostro was established throughout the people and had to be called Easter.
And so these Four Archangels perform, one to the other, in their duties, and the whole of the plant world is in obedience to these four seasons fulfilling their issue and obeying it utterly. And we have to conceive this, for we are trying desperately, by artifice, by blockage, by divorcement, we are desperately trying to live apart from it. This is what gives us stress – the feeling of not quite understanding Nature at all – and wishing that it could be like the city, which we have controlled so well and have got so beautifully organized [Note: Alan is being sardonic here]. But there is this huge abyss, this great valley between all of our well organized city and town life, and there is the whole of Nature in such a terrible condition. And we say, “Oh God! We’ve got to cross this abyss and get the whole of Nature put right!” I’m awfully sorry, but Nature knows terribly well what it’s up to. This whole matter of Nature appearing to us to be suffering is part of the whole ecology of the plant world as a sacrifice again like a crucifixion, showing the mis-performance, the divorcement that is going on, showing us how to behave! The whole plant world in the garden, then, the growing of fruit and the ecstasy of it leads us into this comprehension, and the less we talk about it and the more we perform it, the more exquisite does it become.
In this matter, weeds are herbs and they are of origin, and they are the whole basis of the creation and of soil, of air, of atmosphere, and of human life. Out of all these plants, then, have come every single thing that we have in the emporium, in the kitchen, and out of the garden. Every lettuce, every carrot, every apple, every pear, and every plant, has come out of this incredible image (idée, or spiritual vision) that man has with God, with idée, that he is given a concept out of an exquisite part of that creation, that he suddenly perceives as a gardener in a romantic moment, a perception: “I want an apple this size that is red, that will only ripen next March.” Abracadabra! Good gracious! You see? This has happened over and over again. A farmer’s wife has cooked a wonderful apple dish for her husband’s birthday with apples, and she uses the greatest cooking apple in the world, “Bramley’s Seedling.” Where did this apple come about? And how?
Long ago, this woman’s ancestors cooked with apples and this one woman, Mrs. Bramley, threw the remains of an apple tart that she had cooked for her husband out onto the compost heap, and it consisted of ordinary cooking apples. And out of this came about fifty little apple seedlings, with one in the middle which simply did that [Alan shows with his hands how it grew] and Mrs. Bramley suddenly went down the next year to the compost heap, and there she saw this wonderful little apple. She quickly called her husband, “George! Come and have a look at this!” And he had a look and said, “My God! I think that’s extraordinary!” He called the ministry of agriculture in and the ministers said that this apple seedling was more than extraordinary. They then staked it, and in eight years it fruited and had apples on it this size [Alan gestures with his hands, an apple about 6-7 inches in diameter]. It had many apples on it that size and very shortly they picked one and cut it open and …. Oh! … it was as acidic as it could be, and when they baked it, it was as exquisite as any apple they had ever eaten. So came about a new variety of apple.
You see, these concepts cannot always be decided upon [in advance]. When you plant crops in the garden, you must not work out in your mind, “Ahh, I need one acre of this and five acres of that because it is going to bring in – let me see – $3,000, and this will meet this and that will meet that, and that will work the issue. Therefore, I must preserve that acreage, so I must kill everything that tries to take it because I need the money!” You see, we have lost what the Greeks had. We have no connection with the belief in the Great Archangels anymore! We don’t believe in or follow the cycles any more. A man grows twenty acres of peas and they are exquisite; and he doesn’t eat them or give them to his neighbors but he says, “My God! This is terrible! I may not be able to market them all in time! I’ve got to get the crop. It’s awful! I have go to get the crop… I know! I’ll freeze it!” So he freezes the whole crop, and of course it is useless to anybody after that. And then what does he do? He puts the money he got from selling his crop in the bank. And he has got nothing!
But look you! I am not joking! Look at all the flour in America today.
What do they do to it? They take all the trouble of going to the government and then they can have tractors built in Russia and Japan, and they cover the whole country with tractors, they plow the land up, they desecrate it, they kill everything (including beneficial weeds, plants and worms) in order to get the wheat only; and then when they’ve got the wheat, what do they do? They bleach it and pump it full of synthetic vitamins, because they have already taken all the life out of the wheat. So that now nobody can eat the wheat, and it gives every one of them constipation!
Well, you know that that goes on ad lib. You know it goes on with sugar, and this (mis-approach) has also ended up in the Red Delicious apple; it’s ended up in that awful Bartlett pear, and it’s ended up in some tomatoes that taste like radishes and a whole lot of other things that really don’t taste like anything – that if you were blindfolded – you couldn’t say which is which. Well, I’m not being negative, really.
In this system [The Biodynamic-French Intensive Approach to Horticulture] the whole attitude is positive. We do not say to anybody, “Do not do that. It is pernicious. Don’t do that!” One says, “Perceive – here is a system. It works and it is beautiful.” And it is relationship. If you like it, it is simple and beautiful, and if you don’t like it, well, I do.
In this matter concerning the weeds, how monstrous to destroy them in the most vulgar ways. They all belong and they all are utterly important to us. And now you see that when I spoke of that seedling of that fruit (Bramley’s Seedling apple) that all of this comes out of Xenophon’s “Oikosnomia” that it is only out of the concept of the individual connected with totemism, that the magics of these happenings come about. They are divine. They are given; they are gifts. And you cannot connive them in your mind. And what is happening today is this monstrosity of hybridization – and the whole infamy of that – for perceive that seed – children – are not ours. They are given as gifts and they come from the eternal, from heaven. They come from paradise. They all come out of totality into metamorphosis and they come to us as gifts. What right then do we have to say, “We are the ordinance! We are the law!” and “I will fool with the sexology of this plant and bring about what I want.” This is exactly what the Greeks spoke about: “hybris” (hubris). “Hybris” is the origin of the word “hybrid” and it means defiance of the will of heaven! And this matter of hybridization ought to be looked into today, because it is a monstrosity beyond compare that is going to lead us into the greatest disasters.
This matter concerning our industry (labour) – that the father, the mother and the children and a vase of flowers, the carpet, the curtain and its design; its texture made out of nettles, urtica dioica (stinging nettle), the color, the scents, the food…These are all gifts! They belong to the family and therefore, there is a destiny connected with it. And that the will and desire, such as every one of us has in perceiving a strawberry. It does not matter if the strawberry is on the bed in the garden, or in somebody’s basket or on someone’s table or even sometimes in the emporium; but it is a magnetic force. You cannot deny it. It is full of magic. It’s a request and it is, therefore, a sacrament and it is a deliciousness. (Alan is conveying the fact that we simply cannot resist eating the strawberry). Therefore, this will and desire concerning that is connected with the destiny of man. That man is a most exquisite symphonic director of the whole of Nature. And when he fits into Nature and obeys the laws of the Four Archangels with the angels, he brings about a leadership that nothing else in the world has the capacity of and cannot and was not meant to do. And that man has this destiny. Is he fulfilling it? And if not, what is he doing??
That within us, within us fundamentally, perhaps a long way back, are all the glands and nerves connected with our spinal cord that are the very essence of everything, the movement of a snake, the flicker of a leaf in the wind, a light flashing off water…. they are all participle(s) within our glands and nerves, and they are exquisite. But if we do not use them, if they are not contemplated upon, and if the whole blockage is words in the mind, “Ahhh, let me see now, what time is it? Excuse me, I have to telephone; just don’t interrupt me. Excuse me, but I must write this letter. What do the newspapers say about that? Oh dear, it’s time to go to bed! I’m dead!” None of it has happened. This is like an athlete who doesn’t exercise; if you don’t play tennis every day, you are not very good. All of these (glands, nerves, chakras) are not being exercised anymore. We are not married in the Nature and the performance in Nature that is our destiny.
Now in the whole performance of the growing of the garden is a great secret, concerning image – idée – that when man is obedient to that and he fulfills the position of fertility in the garden, marrying the soil with the air and the area of discontinuity between the two, and the plant world – and the whole of this is an ordinance of obedience with those Four Archangels of the seasons – he has brought about a fertility in that whole procedure that is already out of his hands. He will not only get endless crops that he never thought of, he will also get endless weeds that he never thought of – and the insects – and the birds that will come to those weeds he did not think of … and they are an addition and they are beautiful, and they are essential. And then the next great cycle which is not another year. It has not happened before. It will never happen again. This is something new! He is going to wake up and go to the compost heap and apply that compost into his soils. And with his manures and his propositions of fertilizations, he will apply them into the soils, and out of that soil is going to come things that he never connived or intended… or thought of at all! And a whole lot of weeds that he never conceived of – and most people today would poison them – and every one of them is a magical birth sent by divine creation to lead us higher and higher and higher into the realms of “élevé”, of idée, that will build in the beatific.
And the whole of the Luciferic will marry the Ahrimanic [Rudolf Steiner’s terms for the “uprising atmospheric forces” and “descending earth forces”, respectively]. And Michael and Uriel (archangels) will begin then to bring the balance concerning relationship and dis-relationship. You do not have a fence or a wire around your garden, and you do not own the garden. The garden owns you. And the gardener no longer makes the garden, but the garden is making the gardener.
The obedience to these Four Archangels. Let us look at something quickly: that you would perceive then, that not only man in eating turns one thing into another and creates energy – which is God – and what a beautiful creation out of the sacrament is that – but that the plants are doing identically the same thing. They are turning life into death into life. They turn acid into alkaline; into all of the sugars that come in fruits suddenly, which of course you never buy at the emporium, as you know. You never get a ripe thing in an emporium, and you cannot eat it. And they do not ripen afterwards. They all happen on a sudden day. A fig, a peach, an apricot, a plum and all of the early apples and pears do not ripen once they are picked. All of that is a magic matter concerning the revolutionibus. It is not the soil, it is not just the air or the water, or not the fertilizations; it is revolutionibus! And it suddenly happens by this magic performance of the Four Archangels. It is an ordination and cannot be argued with. The gardener discovers it and perceives it and becomes obedient to it.
Then, what is this? Let me try to put it to you very quickly, for all that I’m trying to say to you tonight is symbolic. It is not telling you how to garden or how we are going to create this [land-the property of the spiritual community; Carmel-In-The Valley] into a great classic garden. It is a symbol of the spirituality as Paracelsus stated in that exquisite verse. If you will perceive this for a moment, and it goes back to 28,000 years ago, in matters that were in hieroglyphics and not in words. That it is known that just as trees have endless rings which denote their age, just as there are all of the stratas in the great soils of the earth… so there are in the constellations – the regions out into the aethereal world – which also means athletic, interestingly enough… there is with that, the leader of the Secundus Mobile – those seven planets – Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn; the Sun and the Moon. It is that that is the octave; it is that that music is. It is written upon. There is no syncopation in it. It is that which is the source of color. Color is not a word. There is no other blue than blue. They are endless. There is no other blue. All blues are different. All reds are different. You only see blue because you go on looking into something, and you say a word “blue!” And the only reason you ever say “red” is that you cannot look any more into it at all; you are stopped at once. In other words, they are all rays [waves?]; they are all vibrations. But they are much more – they are energy. They are all creations concerning energy which is God.
Now if you will remember those stratas and those rings in the trees, please perceive that there are many suns. There is the Sun’s Sun’s Sun’s Sun, and we will go only to the Sun’s Sun. Our Sun’s Sun has no (direct) effect on this earth. If it did, it would destroy it utterly, immediately. It can only affect us through our Sun, as a mediator. Do you see a whole matter here? It is terribly deep. But that sun, then, (our Sun’s Sun), is the ruler of our Secundus Mobile! (It is) the utter ruler, the leader and that as you know, it has orbits, and that all of the planets have (their own) orbits.
You know that Monday is the Moon, Tuesday is Mars, Wednesday is Mercury, Thursday is Jupiter, Friday is Venus, Saturday is Saturn and Sunday is the Sun. You also know that every hour after sunrise the interrelationship of leaderships of the planets come into rotation, and interrelate with the leader. We have pretended that those are days. We only talk of them as Monday, vulgarly, just Monday! Do you see that it is utterly vulgar and ethically rude? It’s just like talking about daisies – there is no such thing as daisies – I am awfully sorry, but they are “the eyes of day”. They open up each day and close at night, so they are “day’s eyes”. Well, we cannot talk anymore! Do you see that I am talking about origins?
You also understand then, that the Moon takes 27 days in its orbit and we call that a month. And that the Sun takes 365 of those [from a geocentric point of view] and we call it a year. Suddenly you come into the realization that this is all a mimic. So, put it in the wastepaper basket, pull the calendar down off the wall and start to perceive…
Saturn takes 30 years to orbit, Jupiter 12 years; Mars takes 2 years, Venus takes 9 months and Mercury (about) 80 days. They all interweave. You see this incredible mathematics; they are all in obedience to the leadership of the Sun. But now I want to talk about the Sun, to bring something desperately home that is a terrible shock to everybody. Everybody thinks the Sun is a hot planet; it is not. It is a cold planet [regarding its influence on our earth]. The higher up you go [from the earth’s surface] the colder you get, and in any case you will discover the matter merely by the performance in the plant world. What happens is this – and this is a most bewildering and astonishing revelation – Aurora, dawn, recreation (is) an incredible matter! Dawn comes and stops (Alan claps loudly). It all ends! And goes into declination and you get evening out. And you get exactly the whole performance [in a day (microcosm)] that you get in a year [macrocosm], of winter dormancy, the equinox of spring, the floration of summer dormancy, the equinox of fall, going to sleep and dying…and the whole winter of dormancy of death and sleep, and again into a new cycle coming into spring.
The whole world falls in love [in spring]. Nothing can stop it! The oceans fall in love with the land and roar against the cliffs! They want to take over the whole of it! The winds sweep and blow the forests down. They are full of love and everything falls in love! Every bird sees another bird and sees it quite differently, and says, “Cooo”. And a few days later the other one says “Coo-coo”, and lays an egg and then they sing a song, and then it is all over. It’s finished and it is blossoming time, and then it is seeding time…however, I’m astray again!
This matter then of Aurora coming – the dawn, what happens?
Look at It…look at it. It is incredible! The leader, the great leader that dominates, that cannot be argued with, throws [sounds off] and says, “Come out and meet. I am Aurora – marriage!” And the whole entity of the ego of the Earth which is equivalent of the Sun, a participle of it, must come out and rise up and meet the demand of this flow, and you get the marriage that we call light and warmth. And this marriage then creates the most exquisite layers of stratas that we call atmosphere; in which we are permitted to float and live with the plants.
This very small area of stratas is an exquisite creation of the utmost magic and controls. And that it is the most gentle greeting (dawn). It is because of this coming out of the ego of the cold, dark Earth, that frost always sets in at dawn. The coldness is brought up out of the Earth and frosts sets in at the first point of the marriage of the (Earth’s) ego and the Sun. And as the Sun begins to rise and goes through the equinox of the early morning – which is gentle – it dries the air and it goes toward noon all the time saying, “Come out…come out! Come on…come on!” And the whole Luciferic, if it could, would draw the whole world up into space (dis-relationship), but it can’t, and because it (the Earth) has its own revolution (ego skin), it has created hardpans which prevent the whole of its soul, its ego, from flying right out. And the Earth is also able to reserve a great deal of itself, so at noon time the angle of the Sun is completely changed and goes into declination, just like in the middle of summer or the middle of winter. So the Sun goes into declination; letting go of the great Earth and the Earth says, “Oh, thank God! That was really too much of a marriage for me..oohh!”, and starts to pant and recover. And the Sun goes on doing this all the way around the Earth – remember – just as the Four Archangels do in the four seasons without stopping. It is then, a whole great series of cycles that go on ad infinitum. So you’ve got the four quarters: the first quarter is the invitation to the marriage, the second quarter is the marriage itself, the third quarter is the climax of the marriage and the fourth quarter is the recovery from the (Sun’s) marriage with the ego of the Earth, which says, “Hey come back for goodness sake!”, while it is all the while gathering back up all its perspicacity and energy. And at the end of the fourth quarter it says, “Well… thank goodness; I have recovered. That’s all right, but look out, boys! We’ve got to get ready because it’s going to happen all over again.”
And you see, it’s just the same with humans, is it not? Every human being falls in love with its opposite and then is overwhelmed by it; and suddenly one says in the middle of the most huge encounter, “My dear, I can’t! I can’t be here anymore! I must go into the study.” One has to escape and recover. And when you have recovered, you can come back again. Well, I expect that you all know about that.
The matter concerning this relationship and dis-relationship then, that all of the plants, all of the herbs, all of the weeds – every one of them – come under the identity of a government of one of the planets. And that likewise do the astrological houses (constellations) which govern our limbs – every limb is governed equally so – and so are the herbs. Therefore you have your relationship and dis-relationship in your medicine, and in your food – as one, if you will, and you should. When you have gone too far into reason and intellect, your medicine separates from your food. All of those (relationships) must be looked at.
And we must realize that earth, air, fire and water are the Four Elements that are the great intermediaries, the intermediaries which have become known in fairy tales and myths as nymphs, undines, sprites, goblins, dwarfs and those endless matters which are absolutely totally real…
I had wanted to read to you some Maeterlinck (author Maurice Maeterlinck). I had wanted to recite some Shakespeare, but I see my time is nearly up. Have I time to read a small piece of Maeterlinck? (Applause)
Concerning the matter concerning relationship and dis-relationship along with destiny. He is writing about the life of the ant:
“Unlike ourselves, the ant has the good fortune to be far more sensitive to pleasure than to pain. Amputated or truncated, she does not deviate from her path, but hastens toward the nest as though nothing had happened. But if her sister solicits her, she stops and shares with her the delights of regurgitation.
With us, happiness is mostly negative and passive and is hardly perceived except as the absence of unhappiness. In the ant, it is before all things positive and active, and seems to pertain (belong) to a privileged planet. Physically, organically, the ant cannot be happy unless she is giving happiness to those around her. She has no other joys than the joys of duty accomplished, which for us, are the only joys that leave no regrets but which most of us only know by hearsay.
The transports of love in which we think to surpass ourselves and escape from ourselves are merely and essentially egoism, that is concentrated and exasperated to such a point, that it brushes elbows with death or annihilation, the very things that it seeks to annihilate. The ant know other joys, which, instead of contracting happiness, enlarge it, multiply it, and lavish it upon her innumerable sisters. She lives in happiness because she lives in all that lives around her, as all live in her and for her, as she lives in all and for all. She lives above all, in immortality, for she is part of a whole which nothing can destroy.
Strange as this assertion may appear at first, the ant is a profoundly mystical being. She exists only for her God and does not imagine that there could be any other happiness, any other reason for living, than to serve Him. To forget herself, and to lose herself within Him. She is wholly steeped in the great primitive religion of Totemism. Totemism is the most ancient of all religions; the most widely distributed of all the religions practiced by man. At the root of all of the other religions, underlying all of the gods, Totemism is the earliest pursuit, the first conquest of that which dies, by that which does not die.
Totemism was the collective soul of the tribe. The tribe believed that their soul was secure because it was bound up with the totem – that is to say, with an animal or vegetable species, a class of objects which could not all perish on the death of the Individual – the totem – the immortal, collective soul resumed this parcel of itself, which had emanated from it for the term of its ephemeral existence.”
Briefly, an ancient narrative: Back in the days when man lived in balance, he was watched over and guided by the stars. At a certain time when it was perceived that he was using reason and intellect, two stars were ordered to descend to the Earth to guide him (back home to balance). It so happened that those two stars arrived on Earth, at the very moment that the Archangel raised his sword and drove Adam and Eve out of the Garden… Paradise. And the two stars, attempting to obey their commands, tried to follow them. But the Archangel raised his sword and said, “None may follow in the land of darkness where these two must travel.” And the one star raised a medallion and said, “I am the gift of the king of fishes and I represent strength!” And the other star raised its medallion and said, “I am the gift of the queen of crops, and I represent comfort.” And the Archangel recognized his two brothers. He then lowered his sword and permitted them to pass in the form of two herbs …. rosmarinus and lavandula; rosemary as strength and lavender as comfort, who later became known as male and female. In this form then, they traveled through the land of darkness, always guiding Adam and Eve on the path that leads them back to the Garden that they had left.
We have to become simple again! We are required to be children. The whole of this Garden is to be a “Kinder-Garten”. I beg and I pray, and in my gratitude of being allowed to be here [Carmel-In-The-Valley Community], and sharing in the vision that leads this place, that there may come a horticulture through this vision; that may lift the United States of America – which has no true horticultural visionary schools at all. And that out of the great classic herb garden that we will create in conjunct with Padua (7) and with Kew and Wisley (8) we may, perhaps, through the vision of this leadership, and through the garden, rise into an international enlightenment. (Applause)
— END TAPE —
Idée Inner spiritual vision; ideal concept; spiritual image; imagination
Biodynamics Dr. Rudolf Steiner’s Agricultural Circle students coined this term. Bio (Living;Life) Dynamic (Energy)
Lyngbya muralis An aquatic bacterial plant
Revolutionibus Alan uses this term to refer to the movement of the planets, stars and the constellations. Text: De revolutionibus orbium coelestium by Nicholas Copernicus 1543
Idée Inner spiritual vision; ideal concept; spiritual image; imagination
Concentro, Medito, Contemplo Concentration, Meditation & Contemplation
Padua The botanic garden in Padua, Italy
Kew and Wisley Two great botanic gardens in the UK