Late in the summer of 2011,
I was asked to submit an affidavit in a lawsuit
brought by a parent who alleged that her child
had been physically abused by a Waldorf teacher.
This is what I wrote. I reprint it here in the hope that
it may help other parents in similar distress.
(I have omitted names and some other details,
and I have done some light editing.)
Dear Honorable Judge X,
I am writing you in behalf of Y and her daughter Z ... While I cannot comment on the specific facts of their case, I can provide context and background.
My name is Roger Rawlings. I have long and deep knowledge of Waldorf education.... [Here I gave my bona fides.]
Because of the length of this affidavit, I have divided the affidavit into sections.
I. Waldorf Schools and Anthroposophy
Waldorf schools were created by the Austrian occultist Rudolf Steiner. It is noteworthy that Waldorf schools are often also called Steiner schools — their commitment to Rudolf Steiner’s teachings is fundamental. Steiner called his teachings Anthroposophy — a system arising from Theosophy, placing humanity at the center of universal evolution. (The word “Anthroposophy” literally means human knowledge or wisdom.)
Perhaps the main point to be grasped about Waldorf schools is that they exist to spread Anthroposophy, which is a pagan, occult religion. A secondary point to grasp is that Anthroposophists and Waldorf faculties are often extremely deceptive about their purposes and activities. This is in keeping with the teachings of Rudolf Steiner, who was a self-proclaimed occultist. The essence of occultism is the belief that one possesses secret, hidden (“occult”) knowledge that must not be shared with the uninitiated. This is how Waldorf faculties generally confront the world.
I realize how bizarre — even unbelievable — all this must sound. But if you bear with me, I will endeavor to prove every statement I make. Thus, on the question of occultism, we should note that one of Steiner’s most central books is titled AN OUTLINE OF OCCULT SCIENCE. By “occult science,” he meant his own teachings: Anthroposophy. Along these lines, Steiner made such statements as these:
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/occultism.
II. Waldorf Secrecy
Waldorf schools generally follow Steiner’s admonition to preserve secrets from outsiders (among whom Steiner included the parents of students). Here are some of these directives, addressed to Waldorf faculty:
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/secrets.
III. Waldorf and Religion
In one of the quotations I have just given, Steiner speaks of prayers and asks Waldorf teachers to call them verses. This is a key indicator. Although Waldorf schools generally deny that they are religious institutions, they are in fact filled with disguised religious doctrines. Thus, the students usually begin each school day by reciting, in unison, “verses” written by Rudolf Steiner. Here is one of these “verses”:
“The Sun with loving light
Makes bright for me each day;
The soul with spirit power
Gives strength unto my limbs;
In sunlight shining clear
I reverence, O God,
The strength of humankind,
That thou so graciously
Hast planted in my soul,
That I with all my might
May love to work and learn.
From Thee come light and strength,
To Thee rise love and thanks.” 
This “verse” is clearly a prayer — it addresses and praises God.
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/prayers.
Steiner’s followers deny that Anthroposophy is a religion because they prefer to think of it as a “science” — specifically, as the “occult science” described by Steiner. The essence of this “science” is the use of clairvoyance to study the spirit realm. Steiner discusses this in his book KNOWLEDGE OF THE HIGHER WORLDS AND ITS ATTAINMENT, also issued as HOW TO KNOW HIGHER WORLDS. Despite denials, however, Anthroposophy is certainly a religion. Centering on a panoply of good and evil gods, Anthroposophy combines teachings from Theosophy, Gnostic Christianity, and Hinduism, with admixtures of other religions including Zoroastrianism and Buddhism. The practice of Anthroposophy entails faith, reverence, prayers, meditations, spiritual guides, observances, and other religious identifiers. It lays out the path to spiritual improvement for its adherents, and it threatens spiritual loss and perdition for everyone else. Anthroposophists believe that they are on the side of the gods, and they believe that their critics are on the side of the demonic powers.
Anthroposophy is a religion.
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/is-it-a-religion.
IV. Waldorf and Violence
Steiner’s followers are generally well-intentioned individuals, and Waldorf schools are well-intentioned. (I should stipulate that there is variation among Waldorf schools — they are not all exactly alike. But most of them conform to the description I am giving you here.) But Steiner's followers are essentially deluded, as in their belief in clairvoyance, which science tells us almost certainly does not exist. [See https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/clairvoyance.] And because so many Waldorf teachers are true-believing Anthroposophists, they often behave in ways that are hard to justify rationally or morally. Their frequently disingenuous, deceptive statements to outsiders constitute just one indication of this. Another is the casual attitude the schools often have toward bullying and violence directed at students. Anthroposophists believe in karma, and as a result they think that interfering in the actions of students and teachers can be a serious mistake. A bully may have a karmic need to be a bully, and a victim of violence may have a karmic need for this victimization. Indeed, Steiner taught that people choose to die in volcanic eruptions and earthquakes in order to satisfy their karma. "[W]e see ... groups of human souls in their descent from pre-earthly into earthly existence wander to regions situated, for example, in the vicinity of volcanoes, or to districts where earthquakes are liable to occur ... [S]uch places are deliberately chosen by the souls thus karmically connected, in order that they may experience this very destiny ... [They think] 'I choose a great disaster on earth in order to become more perfect....'"  Seen in this perspective, non-lethal violence inflicted on a child can be considered, in Waldorf belief, a trivial matter.
Acts of violence in Waldorf schools are almost certainly isolated and random. Yet many such acts have been reported, and there seems to be a pattern of denial and inaction on the part of the school officials. Here are a few reports of in-school Waldorf violence. These are, of course, mere anecdotes, proving nothing. But the existence of such reports should give us pause. These are reports of violence against Waldorf students committed with essential impunity by fellow Waldorf students and by Waldorf faculty.
The following comment may put much of this in context:
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/slaps.
V. Waldorf and the Uninitiated
Waldorf schools tend to be extremely defensive. Believing that they work on the side of the good gods, they believe that their opponents and critics work under the sway of demonic powers. Anyone who challenges a Waldorf school should be opposed with all possible force, since s/he serves the cause of evil. Lying to these enemies, or misleading them, is perfectly justified, Anthroposophists believe — as in calling prayers verses. From the Waldorf perspective, opposition to Waldorf denotes malice and stupidity. Outsiders cannot comprehend the living truth of Anthroposophical doctrines. “[M]alevolent or narrow-minded people can easily discover contradictions in the concepts of spiritual science [i.e., Anthroposophy]. The concepts are alive, and what is alive is mobile, though it does not, in fact, harbour contradictions.”  Steiner promoted a hostile, paranoid attitude among his followers, telling them that they are surrounded by ruthless enemies. “[O]ur enemies are springing up on every side...”  Opponents are evil, literally in league with demonic powers. “[I]n the future the earth with all its beings will pass into a kind of spiritual condition, with the exception of those who refuse to receive the Christ-principle; this refusal we have to understand as a malevolent and unintelligent spiritual opposition energetically exercised ... [T]he lower nature they will have acquired through not having accepted the Christ-principle will be expressed in the astral [realm] by their having essentially the animal form we have characterized, with the seven heads and ten horns”  In Waldorf belief, defending Waldorf schools and Waldorf teachers is tantamount to defending the divine powers of the universe.
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/enemies
VI. The Nature of Waldorf Education
At this point, I should back up to establish the underlying nature and purpose of Waldorf education. As I have said, the purpose is to spread Anthroposophy, which is a religion. To establish these points, I will rely on Rudolf Steiner’s own words.
Addressing Waldorf teachers, Steiner said: “You need to make the children aware that they are receiving the objective truth, and if this occasionally appears anthroposophical, it is not anthroposophy that is at fault. Things are that way because anthroposophy has something to say about objective truth. It is the material that causes what is said to be anthroposophical. We certainly may not go to the other extreme, where people say that anthroposophy may not be brought into the school. Anthroposophy will be in the school when it is objectively justified, that is, when it is called for by the material itself.” 
Since Anthroposophists believe that their doctrines are the Truth underlying all other knowledge, they think that the presence of Anthroposophy will be “justified” at virtually every point in every subject studied. They may be circumspect about it, bringing their beliefs into the classroom subtly, covertly, but they bring them. Steiner said, “As teachers in the Waldorf School, you will need to find your way more deeply into the insight of the spirit and to find a way of putting all compromises aside ... As Waldorf teachers, we must be true anthroposophists in the deepest sense of the word in our innermost feeling.” 
Indeed, one of the most important facts about Waldorf schools is that they are meant to spread Anthroposophy: “One of the most important facts about the background of the Waldorf School is that we were in a position to make the anthroposophical movement a relatively large one. The anthroposophical movement has become a large one.” 
Waldorf education is meant to usher students toward true spiritual life, which is inherently Anthroposophical: “As far as our school is concerned, the actual spiritual life can be present only because its staff consists of anthroposophists.” 
Waldorf teachers serve as priests in a religion that recognizes many spiritual powers or gods (plural: Anthroposophy is polytheistic). The goal of Waldorf schooling is not so much to educate children as to save humanity by leading it to Anthroposophy. Waldorf teachers consider themselves to be on a holy mission: • "The position of teacher becomes a kind of priestly office, a ritual performed at the altar of universal human life."  • “We can accomplish our work only if we do not see it as simply a matter of intellect or feeling, but, in the highest sense, as a moral spiritual task. Therefore, you will understand why, as we begin this work today, we first reflect on the connection we wish to create from the very beginning between our activity and the spiritual worlds ... Thus, we wish to begin our preparation by first reflecting upon how we connect with the spiritual powers in whose service and in whose name each one of us must work.”  • “Among the faculty, we must certainly carry within us the knowledge that we are not here for our own sakes, but to carry out the divine cosmic plan. We should always remember that when we do something, we are actually carrying out the intentions of the gods, that we are, in a certain sense, the means by which that streaming down from above will go out into the world.” 
In sum, the goals of Waldorf schooling are inseparable from the goals of Anthroposophy, although Waldorf teachers generally deny this, for fear of a public backlash: “[W]e have to remember that an institution like the Independent Waldorf School with its anthroposophical character, has goals that, of course, coincide with anthroposophical desires. At the moment, though, if that connection were made official, people would break the Waldorf School’s neck." 
What is Anthroposophy? It is a religion: "[T]he Anthroposophical Society ... provides religious instruction just as other religious groups do." 
And so: "It is possible to introduce a religious element into every subject, even into math lessons. Anyone who has some knowledge of Waldorf teaching will know that this statement is true." 
Thus: "Yesterday, I was sitting on pins and needles worrying that the visitors would think the history class was too religious."  Steiner wasn't concerned that the history class was religious; he worried that outsiders might think it was excessively religious. That there will be some religious content in a Waldorf class goes without saying. Waldorf schools are religious institutions, with "a religious element" introduced into "every subject." And the religion the schools adhere to is Anthroposophy. Hence Steiner was able to say to Waldorf students: “[D]o you know where your teachers get all the strength and ability they need so that they can teach you to grow up to be good and capable people? They get it from the Christ.” 
Take care when Steiner and his followers refer to "Christ." They do not mean the Son of God worshipped in regular Christian churches; they mean the Sun God. This need not detain us at this moment, however. The key point for us now is to recognize Steiner's admission that Waldorf teachers are true believers; they believe they draw their authority from a god. Their work as Waldorf teachers is religious. Even when encouraging their students to love beauty, their purpose is fundamentally religious. “We must, in our lessons, see to it that the children experience the beautiful, artistic, and aesthetic conception of the world; and their ideas and mental pictures should be permeated by a religious/moral feeling." 
For more, see https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/heres-the-answer,
Rudolf Steiner’s followers, many of whom are on the faculties of Waldorf schools, mean well. But they are deluded. They accept the teachings of a self-described clairvoyant and occultist. As the self-appointed devotees of a self-appointed spiritual savant, they close ranks whenever challenged from outside their occult circle. This makes penetrating to the core of their beliefs and actions difficult, but as I hope I have shown, it is not impossible.
There is an underlying dishonesty in the Waldorf movement. Parents are rarely told of the real nature and purpose of Waldorf schooling, at least until they have become deeply immersed and committed to the movement. Moreover, many practices and activities in the schools are veiled in secrecy. Waldorf teachers surely intend no harm — they want to promote the spiritual development of their students. But the basic mission — luring students toward the occult system of Anthroposophy — is highly questionable and, arguably, immoral. Attempting to achieve this mission through clandestine means, without the explicit permission of students' parents, is surely immoral. And the occasional acts of violence that occur in and around the schools are likewise indefensible.
I hope this affadavit is of use to you. I am prepared to answer any additional questions to the best of my ability. My website, Waldorf Watch, has an index, an encyclopedia, and a dictionary — you may find these helpful [https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/site-index, https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/encyclopedia, and https://sites.google.com/site/waldorfwatch/dictionary].
 Rudolf Steiner, THE OCCULT SIGNIFICANCE OF BLOOD (Health Research, 1972), pp. 6-7.
 Rudolf Steiner, CHRIST AND THE SPIRITUAL WORLD (Rudolf Steiner Press, 2008) p. 97.
 Rudolf Steiner, LIFE BETWEEN DEATH AND REBIRTH (SteinerBooks, 1985), pp. 5-6.
 Rudolf Steiner, OCCULT SIGNS AND SYMBOLS (Anthroposophic Press, 1972), lecture 1, GA 101.
 Rudolf Steiner, FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER (Anthroposophic Press, 1998), pp. 649-650.
 Ibid., p. 20.
 Ibid., p. 10.
 Rudolf Steiner, PRAYERS FOR PARENTS AND CHILDREN (Rudolf Steiner Press, 2004), p. 45.
 Rudolf Steiner, KARMIC RELATIONSHIPS, Vol. 2 (Rudolf Steiner Press, 1974), pp. 226-227.
 Rudolf Steiner, THE KARMA OF UNTRUTHFULNESS, Vol. 2 (Rudolf Steiner Press, 1992) lecture 22, GA 174.
 Rudolf Steiner, SECRETS OF THE THRESHOLD (Anthroposophic Press, 1987), “Words of Welcome”.
 Rudolf Steiner, THE APOCALYPSE OF ST. JOHN (Anthroposophical Publishing Co., 1958). lecture 11, GA 104.
 Rudolf Steiner, FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER (Anthroposophic Press, 1998), p. 495.
 Ibid., p. 118.
 Rudolf Steiner, RUDOLF STEINER IN THE WALDORF SCHOOL (Anthroposophic Press, 1996), p.156.
 Rudolf Steiner, EDUCATION FOR ADOLESCENTS (Anthroposophic Press, 1996), p. 60.
 Rudolf Steiner, THE ESSENTIALS OF EDUCATION (Anthroposophic Press, 1997), p. 23.
 Rudolf Steiner, THE FOUNDATIONS OF HUMAN EXPERIENCE (Anthroposophic Press, 1996), p. 33.
 FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER, p. 55.
 Ibid., p. 705.
 Ibid., p. 706.
 Rudolf Steiner, THE CHILD's CHANGING CONSCIOUSNESS AS THE BASIS OF PEDAGOGICAL PRACTICE (Anthroposophic Press, 1996), p. 94.
 FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER, p. 655.
 Rudolf Steiner, RUDOLF STEINER IN THE WALDORF SCHOOL (Anthroposophic Press, 1996), p. 29.
 Rudolf Steiner, EDUCATION FOR ADOLESCENTS (Anthroposophic Press, 1996), pp. 77.
[R. R., 2011.]
SIX FACTS ABOUT STEINER EDUCATION