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A "Society for Ethical Culture"

Rudolf Steiner, The Future, Volume I, No. 5, October 29, 1892
Google translate: German to English

A "SOCIETY FOR ETHICAL CULTURE"

Why did Friedrich Nietzsche think deliriously about the great questions of human morality? It would have been much easier to hear Felix Adler, the professor of philosophy from America, about the "common morality common to all good people" and to proclaim what he had heard from the German people as a doctrine of salvation. So it has made an elite of German educated and established a "Society for Ethical Culture," the purpose of which is to make that "common" the main carrier of educated people. I notice right from the start that there are men among the founders of society who I esteem. The founding itself, however, arises from a backward conception of life.

Official philosophers, who today still call the old Kant-grip cripple Nietzsche-ruminate on him, firmly stand by the view that there is such a thing as a "morality common to all good people"; Modern thinking that captures its time and looks a bit too far into the future is beyond. "Act so that the principles of your action may be valid for all men"; this is the core of Kant's moral teaching. And in every key, this saying sounds to our ears from the confessions of those who call themselves Liberals, Liberals, Humanity Apostles, and so forth. But today there is already a circle of people who know that this sentence is the death of all individual life, and that on the life of individuality all cultural progress is based. What is special about every human being, must emerge from it and become part of the process of development. If one disregards this special, which everyone has for himself, then only a banal "general" remains, which can not bring mankind by a margin. A few rules of convenience for the intercourse, that is all that can come out as "common good to all good people". The ethical life of man, in the true sense of the word, does not begin until these laws based on utility hear.

And this life can only come from the center of the personality and will never be the result of implanted tenets. There is no universal human ethics. To the Kantian proposition, modern sentiment must reciprocate the very opposite: act just as, according to your particular individuality, only you can act; then you contribute most to the whole; because then you accomplish what others can not do. This is what all the people of history have said. Therefore, there are so many different moral conceptions, as there are peoples, ages, and basically as many as there have been and are individuals. And if this natural law were replaced by that which is held to be correct by the moral philosophers who think in the Kantian sense: a bland monotony of all human action would be the necessary consequence. Such "general" moral principles have often been established; but no man has ever set his life after. And the realization that this is a business for idle minds should characterize all modern thought.

I can well imagine what objections to these sentences are raised. "That justifies the pure anarchy!" "If only one lives out, then one can not think of a common work!" Had I not really heard such objections, I would find it superfluous to touch them with only a few words. It is here, as already said, the speech of the ethical life of man. What is below its level is not subject to moral standards; this is only judged according to its expediency and inappropriateness.

Here to do the right thing is the task of social bodies; Ethics has nothing to do with it. The state may watch over the usefulness or harmfulness of human actions and provide the most appropriate; the ethical value of my actions is something that I have to deal with as an individual with myself. There may be rules of expediency of action, and their observance may be enforced by force; Rules of moral action do not exist. Anarchism is not to be rejected because it is immoral, but because it is inappropriate. In the realm of morality alone the principle can apply: to let live and to live.

It is not surprising that in America, where in an eminently material cultural life everything that goes beyond concern for the basic needs of life is consumed by the idea of ​​"ethical societies". In Germany, where there is still a sense for the higher tasks of humanity, but should not be imitated. Wherever one thinks of it, the physical life is as comfortable as possible. It may be desirable to look for the comfortable means of finding moral principles, because moral impulses are lacking. But in a cultural area where there is a true spiritual life, the particular moral life can only be the result of the prevailing world view. My attitude in life will depend on how I relate to both, in my view of nature and the human world. The custom is always a necessary consequence of the knowledge of an age, people or people.

For this reason, great individualities who proclaim new truths to their ages will always give a new stamp to life. A Messiah of a new truth is always the herald of a new morality. A moralist who has only behavioral measures to give without knowing anything special about nature or people is never heard. Therefore, there can be nothing more wrong than the measure adopted by the constituent assembly of the "ethical society" of wanting to influence the improvement of ethical life by disseminating moral writings. It is quite understandable to me that one has completely ignored German writings and initially only thinks of translations of American books.

In Germany one would not find much useful for this purpose. Here books on ethics make only the school philosophers who are biased in the unfashionable Kantian doctrine. But they write a completely incomprehensible school language for those circles on which the "ethical society" reckons. Out-of-school philosophers, however, have no moral principles. Here, the moral-individualistic way of thinking has already settled in deeply. The American books of this type contain mostly trivia, which is to be read only emotional-minded old girls or immature schoolboys. The right German, scholarly, or unlearned, Philistine will buy many, and many a glorious one to tell about them; he will not read it.

Men of some knowledge, who have not quite come to sleep because of our sad school philosophy in thought, know that in the majority of these books there are only wisdom about which one hundred years ago we, the advanced ones, only had one yawn. But it is lamentable to hear it that youth education should be inoculated with these desolate moral maxims. Herr von Gizycki spoke the sharpest words about the pedagogically reprehensible influence of purely confessional education. Hardly any modern thinker will argue with him about that. But what the denominations do with their moral principles, the "ethical society" wants to imitate with the universal human. But here and there nothing is achieved but the killing of the individual and the subjugation of life through lifeless, rigid laws.

In the place of the clerics of religions, the priests of general-human morality should step. With these, however, it is even worse ordered than with those. The confessional moral doctrines are the results of certain worldviews that make up the legitimate cultural content of humanity; the universal human moral doctrine is a sum of commonplaces; they are scraps of all sorts of moral notions that do not stand out against the background of a great conception of time. Anyone who thinks that it is viable or even suitable to reform the ethical content of our culture, is thus giving its psychological insight a bad testimony.

We are faced with a reshaping of our whole world-view. All the pain that a sex struggling with the highest questions has to endure weighs on us. We feel the agony of questioning; the happiness of the solution of the great riddle shall bring us a Messiah, which we daily expect. Our time of suffering may be long, for we have become demanding; and we will not be put off so soon. But this much is certain: whatever he will announce to us, the reformer: with the new knowledge the new morality will come. Then we will also know how to set up the new life. To put the educated now old cultural remnants as the eternal moral good of humanity means to blunt them for the perception of the fermentation phenomena of the time, and make them unsuitable for participation in the tasks of the nearest future.

Among the statutes of the "Society for Ethical Culture" are yes also some that will have a favorable effect. The initiation of a more lively discussion of religious questions, the pursuit of a better life for the poorer classes of society are things that deserve all recognition. But all this has nothing to do with the basic tendencies of society, which want to push all conceptions of ethical life back to a level surmounted by modern consciousness. 

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1887-1900 Collected Essays from Rudolf Steiner's Philosophy Of Freedom Period

"At the back of my mind there always lurked this question: how could the epoch be persuaded to accept the ideas of The Philosophy of Freedom? If you are prepared to take the trouble, you will find that everything I wrote for the Magazin für Literatur is imbued with the spirit of The Philosophy of Freedom." Rudolf Steiner 

The essays in this volume are divided into four main sections: The first part contains Rudolf Steiner's contributions to the daily politics of the "Deutsche Wochenschrift" (Vienna 1888), which represented the national interests of Germany in Austria.

The second part contains cultural and contemporary articles, which Rudolf Steiner wrote especially for the "Magazin für Literatur" published by him in Berlin.

In the third part, Rudolf Steiner's contributions on Nietzsche and the Nietzsche Archive are compiled.

The fourth part contains smaller book reviews and various other contributions.

CONTENTS Source of the journals pages 716/717

PDF download link (German)

I

Essays from "German weekly" 1888, VI. vintage

The week, December 30, 1887-5. January 1888, No. 1. , 17
DieWoche, fifth-ll.Januarl888, No.2 20
The week, 12.-18. January 1888, No. 3 22
The week, 18.-24. January 1888, No. 4 26
The week, 25.-31. January 1888, No. 5 30
The week, 1.-7. February 1888, No. 6 39
The week, 8.-15. February 1888, No. 7 43
The week, 15.-22. February 1888, No. 8 47
The week, 22.-29. February 1888, No. 9 50
The week, 1.-7. March 1888, No. 10 53
The week, 7.-14. March 1888, No. 11 56
The week, 14.-21. March 1888, No. 12 62
The week, 22.-28. March 1888, No. 13 64
The week, March 29-4. April 1888, No. 14 67
The week, 5.-11. April 1888, No. 15 70
The week, 11.-18. April 1888, No. 16 74
The week, 18.-25. April 1888, No. 17 76
The week, April 26th-2. May 1888, No. 18 78
The week, 3.-10. May 1888, No. 19 80
The week, 11.-16. May 1888, no. 20 82
The week, 17.-23. May 1888, No. 21 85
The week, 23.-30. May 1888, No. 22 88
The week, May 31 -6. June 1888, No. 23 90
The week, 6.-13. June 1888, No. 24 93
The week, 14.-20. June 1888, No. 25 96
The Week, June 21-27, 1988, No. 26 ........ 99
The week, June 28-4. July 1888, No. 27 102
The week, 5.-11. July 1888, No. 28 105
The week, 11.-18. July 1888, no. 29 108
The German national thing in Austria. The parlamen
Tarische representation of the Germans .111
German weekly 1888, VI. Jg., No. 22
The German national thing in Austria. The Germans
Clericals and their friends 116
German weekly 1888, VI. Jg., No. 25
The German education system (in Austria) and Mr.
vonGautsch 121
German weekly 1888, VI. Gen., No. 23
Monsignor Greuter 127
German weekly 1888, VI. Jg., No. 26
The Emperor's words 130
German weekly 1888, VI. Jg., No. 26
Papacy and Liberalism 134
German weekly 1888, VI Jg., No. 28
The Germans in Austria and their next tasks 139 Deutsche Wochenschrift 1888, VI. Jg., No. 29

II

Cultural and contemporary articles, which Rudolf Steiner wrote especially for the "Magazin für Literatur" published by him in Berlin.


General Assembly of the Goethe Society 149
Chronicle of the Vienna Goethe-Verein, V. Band, 6th ed., No. 5, May 25, 1891

Moltke As Philosopher 154
Literary Mercury, XII. Jg., No. 15, April 9, 1892

Maximilian Harden "Apostate" 158
Literary Mercury, Xu. Gen., No. 27, 2 July 1892

A "Society For Ethical Culture" in Germany. .164
Literary Mercury, XII. Jg., No. 40, October 10, 1892

A "Society for Ethical Culture" 169
The Future, Volume I, No. 5, October 29, 1892

J.M.Bosch "Human Compassion" A contribution to the foundation of Scientific Ethics 176
Literary Mercury, XII. Jg., No. 50, December 17, 1892

Adolf Gerecke "The Hopelessness Of Morality" 177
Literary Mercury, XII. Jg., No. 51, December 24, 1892

Old And New Moral Concepts 180
The Future, II. Volume, No. 16, January 14, 1893

Grand Duchess Sophie of Saxony 187
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, No. 14, April 8, 1897

Catholicism And Progress 189
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, No. 37, 18 September 1897

The Desire Of The Jews For Palestine 196
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, No., 38, 25 September 1897

Goethe Days in Weimar
Report on the 13th General Assembly of the Deutsche Goethe-Gesellschaft. , 20
Supplement to the Allgemeine Zeitung, No. 232, Oct. 14, 1897

Kuno Fischer on the Grand Duchess Sophie of Saxony 207 Magazine for Literature, 66th Y., No. 41, 16 October 1897

Goethe Days in Weimar. Report on the 13th General Assembly of the Deutsche Goethe-Gesellschaft. .212 Magazine for Literature, 66th ed., No. 42, October 23, 1897

Theodor Mommsen's letter to the Germans of Austria 214
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, No. 45, November 13, 1897

The daily conversation of today 217
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, no. 46, 20 November 1897

The instincts of the French 221
Magazine for Literature, 66th Y., No. 49, 11 December 1897

Emile Zola to the youth 225
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 7, February 19, 1898

Zola's oath and the truth about Dreyfus 230
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 9, March 5, 1898

Contemporary High School Reform 232
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 9, March 5, 1898

University education and the requirements of the Ge
currently 235
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 19, May 14, 1898

The Goethetag in Weimar. Report on the 14th General Assembly of the German Goethe-Gesellschaft. , 239 Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 24, 18 June 1898

The Social Question 247
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 28, 16 July 1898
Freedom and Society 251
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 29 and 30, 23 and 30 July 1898
Bismarck, the man of political success 263
Magazine for Literature, 67th Jg., No. 32, 13th August 1898
Friedrich Jodl «Essence and goals of the ethical movement
in Germany »272
Dramaturgical Sheets, 1st Gen., No. 32, 13 August 1898
Jules Michelet 274
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 33, August 20, 1898
Literary Wisdom and Devil Island 276
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 37, 17 September 1898
Dreyfus letters 277
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 41, 15 October 1898
John Henry Mackay and Rudolf Steiner. The individuali
Stark Anarchism: An Opponent of «Propaganda of the
Did". Open Letter to Dr. Ing. Rudolf Steiner, Out
donor of the "Zeitschrift für Literatur" 281
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 39, September 30, 1898
Answer to John Henry Mackay 283
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 39, September 30, 1898
Correction 287
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 41, 15 October 1898
Joseph Müller "Reform Catholicism" 288
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 41, 15 October 1898
School and college 289
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 49, 50, 3, 17 December 1898
College and Public Life 301
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 50 and 51, 17 and 24 December 1898
Moritz von Egidy. Died on December 29, 1898. ,
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 2, January 14, 1899
On the problem of the journalist and critic. On the occasion of the death of Emil Schiff on January 23, 1899. , , Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 5, 4 February 1899
Professor Schell 324
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 10, March 11, 1899
About the apprenticeship 327
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 11, 18 March 1899
The literature on the woman question 329
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 11, 18 March 1899
Heinrich von Treitschke «Politics» 335
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 11, 18 March 1899
Collegium logicum 337
Magazine for Literature, 68th year no. 12, 25th March 1899
Gutenberg's act as a landmark of cultural development. .341
German Book and Stone Printer 1900, 6th volume, No. 9
The printing art. To celebrate the five hundredth birthday
their creator's day 354
Magazine for Literature, 69th Y., No. 25, 23 June 1900
A monument 360
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 40, 6 October 1900
Thomas Babington Macaulay. Born on Oct. 25, 1800 367 Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 42, October 20, 1900
Max Müller 373
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 47, 24th November 1900
Ahasuerus 378
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 35, September 1, 1900

Adolf Bartels, the literary historian 382
Communications from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, IL Jg., No. 37, September 11, 1901
The "Post" as a lawyer of the Germanic 387
Messages from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, IL Jg., No. 39, 25 September 1901
A Heine haters 388
Communications from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, IL Jg., No. 38, 18 September 1901
The Scientific Proof of the Anti-Semites 393
Messages from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, IL Jg., No. 40, October 2, 1901
Shameful anti-Semitism 398
Communications from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, IL Jg., No. 46-48, 13, 20 and 27 November
Two measures 414
Communications from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, ü. Jg., No. 50, December 11, 1901
Idealism against anti-Semitism 417
Communications from the Association for the Defense of Anti-Semitism, H. Jg., No. 52, 25 December 1901
Stefan von Czobel «The development of religious concepts
as the basis of a progressive religion »420
The Vähan 1901, Jg. III, No. 6

Seven letters from Fichte to Goethe. Two letters from Fichte to Schiller. With explanations by Rudolf Steiner 422 Goethe-Jahrbuch 1894, 15th volume

III

Rudolf Steiner's contributions on Nietzsche and the Nietzsche Archive. 


Nietzscheanism 453
Literary Mercury, XII. Gen., No. 14, April 2, 1892
Friedrich Nietzsche «So Spoke Zarathustra», IV. Part.
Recent publication from Nietzsche's estate. - A book
for all and none. Fourth and last part 460
Literary Mercury, XII. Gen., No. 24, June 11, 1892
Kurt Eisner «Psychopathia spiritualis. Friedrich Nietzsche
and the apostles of the future »467
Literary Mercury, XIII. Gen., No. 4, January 28, 1893
Communication and correction 469
Supplement to the Allgemeine Zeitung (Munich) No. 215 and 217, 17 and 24 September 1896
Nietzsche Archive 470
Hamburger Fremdenblatt, October 3, 1896
Nietzsche in pious illumination 471
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 33, August 20, 1898
A real "disciple" Zarathustra 475
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 43, October 29, 1898
Friedrich Nietzsche and the Berliner Tageblatt .... 479 Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 5, 3 February 1900
Friedrich Nietzsche as a poet of the modern world
Look 482
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 49, 8 December 1900
Short excerpt from a lecture. About F. Nietzsche. , 486 Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 39, September 29, 1900
Friedrich Nietzsche, died on August 25, 1900. , , 489 Entertainment Sheet of the Forward, No. 165, August 28, 1900
Haeckel, Tolstoy and Nietzsche 497
Magazine for Literature, 70th Y., No. 45, 9 November 1901
The Nietzsche Archive and its charges against the previous editor. A revelation
I. The publication of Nietzsche's works 505
II. On the characteristics of Mrs. E. Förster-Nietzsche. .519
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 6, February 10, 1900
The Second Coming of Nietzsche .... 529 A defense of Nietzsche's so-called "Second Coming". From Dr. E. Horn pepper
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 15, April 14, 1900
Response to the above 538
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 15, April 14, 1900
The so-called second coming of the same from Nietz
cal. A continuation of my reply to E. Horn
effers essay "A Defense of the so-called" Wie-
dergleich der Gleichen) by Nietzsche »549
Magazine for Literature, 69th Y., No. 16 and 17, 21 and 28 April 1900
Mrs. E. Förster-Nietzsche and her knight of funny shape. An answer to Dr. Seidl's "unmasking". , 571 The Society, XVI. Jg., Volume IL Issue 4, May 1900
594 response
The Future 1900, VIII Jg., 31st Volume, No. 33
Letter from Rudolf Steiner to Elisabeth Förster-Nietzsche. , 598
The alleged "fight for the Nietzsche edition". .601 Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 27, 7 July 1900

IV

Smaller book reviews and various other contributions.

IV
C. Andresen "The Development of Man" .... 617 Literary Mercury, XL, no. 40, October 3, 1891
Jürgen Bona Meyer «Temperament and temperament
treatment »618
Literary Mercury, XI. Jg., No. 41, October 10, 1891
E. Kulke «On the evolution of opinions» 619
Literary Mercury, XII. Gen., No. 2, January 9, 1892
E. Martig "Psychological Psychology with Application
on education »621
Literary Mercury, XII. Jg., No. 12, March 19, 1892
Franz Lauczizky «Textbook of Logic» 622
Literary Mercury, XII. Gen., No. 9, February 27, 1892
Dr. R. Biese «Principles of Modern Humanity Education» 623
Literary Mercury, XII. Gen., No. 37, September 10, 1892
Prof. Dr. Kirchner «Green Germany». A ramble
by the recent German poetry 626
Literary Mercury, XIII. Gen., No. 32, August 19, 1893
Woldemar von Biedermann 628
Magazine for Literature, 66th Y., No. 11, 18 March 1897
To our readers 629
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, No. 27, 10 July 1897
Alfred von Arneth 630
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, no. 32, 14th August 1897
Henry George 631
Magazine for Literature, 66th year, No. 44, 6 November 1897
announcement 632
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 1, 8 January 1898
A letter from Blaise Pascal 633
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 10, March 12, 1898
Karl Biedermann «The First German Parliament» .... 634
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 14, April 9, 1898
Dr. Kurella «Socialism in England» 635
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 18, May 7, 1898
Science and Press 635
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 20, 21 May 1898
About popular university courses 636
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 30, July 30, 1898
Heinrich Kiepert 638
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 31, 6th August 1898
To the lecture of Prof. Pietzker about "Naturwissen
academic instruction »639
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 41, 15 October 1898
Louis Dollivet "Rooms Juif!" 640
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 43, October 29, 1898
Moriz Lazarus "Ethics of Judaism" 640
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 43, October 29, 1898
Announcement for the year 1899 641
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 1, 7 January 1899
Eduard Samson. Died on 2 May 1899 642
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 19, May 13, 1899
Postscript to an essay «begins the 19th century
with the coming New Year's Day? »643
Magazine for Literature, 68th Y., No. 50, 16 December 1899
Lecture by Karl Lamprecht 646
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 4, January 27, 1900
Ernst goal «from today». Thoughts on the threshold of
century 647
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 10, March 10, 1900
Against the "Lex Heinze" 651
Magazine for Literature, 69th year, No. 10, March 10, 1900
Lex Heinze 652
Magazine for Literature, 69th Y., No. 21, May 26, 1900

ATTACHMENT
The Goethetage in Weimar 655
Vmtl. Weimar newspaper 1897
School and College 660
Magazine for Literature, 67th Y., No. 49, December 10, 1898
University education and public life 661
Autoreferat, leaflet [December 1898]
Information from the publisher
To this issue 665
Notes on text 667
Name Index 703
References of journals 716
Overview of the Rudolf Steiner Complete Edition. , , 719

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