"As Waldorf teachers, we must be true anthroposophists
in the deepest sense of the word in our innermost feeling.”
— Rudolf Steiner, FACULTY MEETINGS WITH RUDOLF STEINER
(Anthroposophic Press, 1998), p. 118.
"You will have to take over children for their education and instruction —
children who will have received already (as you must remember) the education,
or mis-education given them by their parents."
— Rudolf Steiner, addressing Waldorf teachers,
THE STUDY OF MAN (Rudolf Steiner Press, 2004), p. 16.
"I am a missionary on behalf of Steiner."
— instructor in a Waldorf
Getting New Waldorf Teachers
Up to Speed
Some teachers at Waldorf schools are not deeply committed Anthroposophists,
but a great many are.
Waldorf teacher training is founded on Steiner's occultism.
Here is one bit of revealing evidence:
The following passages describe the training offered by the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training
I am transcribed this material in the middle of January, 2010.] 
Note the references to Anthroposophy, the evolution of consciousness, karma, and so on.
Note, too, the extensive assignment of Rudolf Steiner's books and lectures for the trainees to read.
Graduates of such a program should be deeply versed in Anthroposophy
and they may indeed be what Steiner said they should be:
"true anthroposophists in the deepest sense.
FIRST YEAR OF THE PROGRAM
In the First Year, students meet basic concepts of anthroposophy, such as the evolution of consciousness; the human being as an evolving being of body, soul and spirit; thinking as a spiritual activity; the relationship of good and evil; the meaning of materialism in our time; and the ways and means for achieving self-discipline and self-knowledge.
In seminar classes, attention is paid to classroom review of weekly reading assignments. Students learn to recognize the deep philosophical underpinnings of the Waldorf curriculum and the unique calibration of the curriculum to the development of the child.
The focus on the “why” of Waldorf education provides the important context for the “how” (methods) which comes increasingly into focus during the second and third years.
Toward the end of the first year, the student spends three days observing in the class of an experienced Waldorf teacher. The student carefully observes one child and writes a study of that child, describing both the child and how the class teacher addressed the learning style of that particular child.
SECOND YEAR OF THE PROGRAM
The Second Year leads to a more refined and practical understanding of the self and its relationship to the world. Careful observation of phenomena in the natural world and in human nature support an active understanding of, and appreciation for, the interplay of teacher as artist and teacher as scientist. Rudolf Steiner’s research into the laws of karma, the laws of nature, and the laws of human development provide opportunity for continuing practice of objectivity and self-knowledge.
During the second year seminar classes, students are expected to assume a greater role in the academic and artistic rendering of the reading materials which expand on first year topics, especially human development and the developmental phases of the growing child. Students explore further the way in which the Waldorf curriculum uniquely supports the changing consciousness of the child.
Independent projects continue with two major presentations.
During the spring of the second year, each student participates in a three-week practicum in the classroom of an experienced Waldorf teacher. Students can choose a kindergarten, grades or high school practicum. A mentor supports students with practicum preparation during the weekends before and during the practicum. During this second year practicum, students are expected to take on classroom responsibilities as requested by the supervising teacher and teach a minimum of three full main lessons.
THIRD YEAR OF THE PROGRAM
The Objective of the Third Year is to consolidate and expand on what the students have learned in the previous two years.
An intensive, year-long engagement with Rudolf Steiner’s key pedagogical lecture cycle, The Study of Man, provides the basis for deeper penetration of anthroposophical anthropology.
Third-year students implement the philosophical foundation of the curriculum in the classroom as they take responsibility for building conscious, artistic lessons. They learn to integrate various aspects (movement, music, story, poetry, reading, math, drawing and painting) with the subjects they are teaching, and to structure the flow from one part of a lesson to another, from one lesson to another, from one subject to another. Students also work with the theory and practice of classroom management and group dynamics and, with their own growing capacity for objective self-knowledge, gain insight into working with parents and colleagues.
During the fall of the third year, each student again participates in a practicum. Support for practicum preparation is again part of the weekend classes. During this third year practicum, students are expected to take on classroom responsibilities as requested by the supervising teacher and teach as many full main lessons as possible. Supervising teachers provide formal, written evaluations of the students whose practicums they supervise.
The Third Year Project, integral to the year’s course, is a mentored, independent research project on some aspect of the curriculum, presented at the end of the year to the teacher training community and reviewed by the class and their teachers.
Third Year topics include but are not limited to:
Pedagogical stories, verse-writing, math and science (grades track), puppetry (kindergarten track), the principles of Waldorf education applied to high school subjects (high school track), the four temperaments, storytelling, block rotations, design and review of lessons, the main lesson book, class plays, birthdays and festivals, narrative reports (Waldorf report cards), parent evenings, healthy habits for the teacher inside and outside the classroom, and inner work of the teacher.
Rudolf Steiner lectures used: Study of Man, Practical Advice to Teachers, Discussions with Teachers, Waldorf Education for Adolescents or Essentials of Education
Here are descriptions of some courses teacher trainees take
in the same program:
The Human Being and the Cosmos
Includes an introductory overview of anthroposophy. Rudolf Steiner texts studied: Becoming the Archangel Michael’s Companions (formerly The Younger Generation); Self-Consciousness, the Spiritual Human Being; and Spiritual Guidance of Humanity. By means of these three texts, as well as lectures and presentations, the student is introduced to a broad range of anthroposophical concerns.
Introduction to Waldorf Education
Local Waldorf teachers present Waldorf education in the kindergarten, grades and high school. Rudolf Steiner’s lecture cycle, The Kingdom of Childhood, is the basis for a thorough introduction to the principles of Waldorf pedagogy and the developmental stages of childhood upon which they are based. We also discuss topics such as the four temperaments, the twelve senses, writing before reading, from the whole to the part, mood as the basis of discipline, the teacher as authority, the teacher as artist.
We consider such topics as individual, historical and world karma; reincarnation and karma; free will and destiny; laws of karma. Rudolf Steiner lectures used: Manifestations of Karma and A Western Approach to Reincarnation and Karma. The course requires an independent biography project.
Students in the first, second or third year receive an introductory overview of the holistic principles of anthroposophically extended medicine. Taught by a practicing physician trained in both conventional and anthroposophical medicine, the course includes topics such as the four organs, the four constitutional polarities, sclerotic versus inflammatory illnesses, childhood illnesses, the karma of illness.
In addition to practicing eurythmy, students also learn about therapeutic eurythmy, which, when given under the supervision of a physician, can be a great help for medical patients, children in need of special care, and children with learning difficulties.
To put matters in context:
"You will have to take over children for their education and instruction — children who will have received already (as you must remember) the education, or mis-education given them by their parents. Indeed our intentions will only be fully accomplished when we, as humanity, will have reached the stage where parents, too, will understand that special tasks are set for mankind to-day, even for the first years of the child's education. But when we receive the children into the school we shall still be able to make up for many things which have been done wrongly, or left undone, in the first years of the child's life. For this we must fill ourselves with the consciousness through which alone we can truly teach and educate."
— Rudolf Steiner, addressing Waldorf teachers
[THE STUDY OF MAN (Rudolf Steiner Press, 2004), p. 16].
is a basic Waldorf education text;
its subtitle is "General Education Course".
The book is mentioned in the description
of Waldorf teacher training, above.
Here are some of the contents of THE STUDY OF MAN,
taken from the lecture synopses at the beginning of the book:
Life before birth and after death.
[THE STUDY OF MAN, pp. 9-13.]
You may want to ask yourself whether you want your child to be educated
by people who have studied these subjects
and adopted this way of thinking about the world.
For more on THE STUDY OF MAN,
see "Oh Humanity".
For more on Waldorf teacher training,
see "Sneaking It In"
the section "Waldorf Teacher Training"
A Waldorf school in the USA.
Here are excerpts from the prospectus for a two-year course at a Camphill community.
Camphills are Anthroposophical sites where education and assistance for people with special needs are often offered.
Here is an item from the Waldorf Watch "news" page:
"The Mountain School is a non-profit Waldorf inspired, permaculture/biodynamic farm, wilderness and Steiner methods school nestled in the northern Rocky Mountains of southern central Idaho [USA] ... The school currently enrolls thirty-six students ... The Mountain School currently operates as a unique hybrid of a traditional Waldorf school model combined with a one room school house model ... Requirements [for teaching applicants]: Demonstrated experience as a Waldorf certified grades teacher ... Bachelor’s degree or equivalent.” [2-7-2011 http://jobs.waldorfteachers.com/job/3839/one-room-school-house-grades-teacher-at-the-mountain-school/]
Some Waldorf schools attempt to seem more or less conventional, so as to deflect opposition. Others are dramatically different from ordinary schools. A "permaculture/biodynamic farm, wilderness and Steiner methods school" surely falls into the latter category.
Many Waldorf schools are extremely small. This can mean that students receive a lot of individual attention. It can also mean that the students are isolated from the wide world and thus are primed for Anthroposophical indoctrination.
Teachers at Waldorf schools are not necessarily qualified educators. “Waldorf certification” is very different from the official certification needed to teach in public schools — it often means attending unaccredited Waldorf teacher training programs while skipping college. Note that The Mountain School is not looking for applicants with Master's degrees (MA's or MEd's). The school will consider applicants who have undergraduate college degrees “or equivalent.” This sets the bar very low. Teachers accepted on the basis of such standards may know almost nothing about the real world aside from whatever they picked up in high school. And if they attended Waldorf high schools...
Stockholm University has decided to wind up its Steiner-Waldorf teacher training. Steiner science literature is 'too much myth and too little fact', the university's teacher education committee has ruled.
"The courses did not encompass sufficient subject theory and a large part of the subject theory that is included is not founded on any scientific base," Stockholm University wrote in a statement on Monday.
The decision has been criticized by a group of professors in a debate article in Svenska Dagbladet.
"The decision is a direct threat to Sweden's 105 Steiner-Waldorf schools and pre-schools. 7,000 pupils will be taught by teachers without qualifications in Steiner pedagogy."
...Stefan Nordlund, the dean of Stockholm University's faculty of natural sciences, has defended the decision.
"The syllabus contains literature which conveys scientific inaccuracies that are worse than woolly; they are downright dangerous."
...The courses and literature have been discussed and reviewed by the faculty "in the customary manner" in the spring and the faculty's findings were forwarded to the education committees of the faculty and the university.
...The Rudolf Steiner College is now faced with a choice: to approach another seat of learning with whom to cooperate or to apply to the National Agency for Higher Education (Högskoleverket) for its own examination license. — Peter Vinthagen Simpson, "Stockholm University Ends Steiner Teacher Training, THE LOCAL, Sweden's News in English, August 26, 2008 http://www.thelocal.se/13944/20080826/.
Here is an account of Waldorf teacher training
by one who went through it.
I have excerpted several pages beginning at
My Waldorf teacher training began in 1999 and ended two years later.
...The program was part-time and consisted of a foundation year and a teacher training year. I had no idea what to expect. I tried to read Rudolf Steiner’s EDUCATION AS A FORCE FOR SOCIAL CHANGE and his other lectures on education but the material was completely over my head. It might as well not have been translated from German.
So I was surprised to learn that my fellow classmates were all vegetarians ... And they were New Age types, hippies, granolas, crunchies, earth muffins, tree huggers, and free spirits in dread locks, potato sack dresses with open backs, scarves, Birkenstocks, and patchouli but we did have our share of housewives who had become interested in Waldorf through their children. 
Our classes were to echo the experience the children have in a Waldorf classroom. We were immersed in all manner of art from sculpting to painting to drama, even woodworking. We sang, played the recorder, engaged in speech exercises and participated in something called Spacial Dynamics (think Nia meets gymnastics).
...Eurythmy was my favorite class. Eurhythmy is movement, like something between dance and sign language with a piano accompaniment. I found it beautiful to watch like hula even if I did not understand the meaning behind the gestures. It had both a soothing and thrilling effect on me.
...There was a breathing exercise that we did in at the beginning of almost every class. We’d slip on our slippers like those black shoes you get at Chinatown but they were white, then form a circle on the hardwood floor. The piano music would start and together we moved backwards, like a flower blossoming. Then we moved in back together, like the flower closing or contracting. We repeated this making the circle larger and larger before contracting again smaller and smaller.
It sounds strange if you are not accustomed to theatre or dance. But to me it was like learning a new language, the language of body movement as it related to the cosmos, working together with the music and the people around you. There was a beauty to it, a gentleness that became my daily hug.
This was largely due to our teacher. She was an elderly lady from Germany or Switzerland. I can’t remember and she would probably strangle me for forgetting her mother country; such an amazing woman full of vitality and good humor. I remember the day I was feeling particularly melancholic and for some reason and I looked over at her and said, “Hold me!” She pulled me into a fierce hug, the class laughed but we all started to laugh even harder when she burst out into some silly song with gusto.
Art was taught by a middle aged man who had a fondness for sweater vests. George read poems and passages from books like CENTERING by Mary Caroline Richards and from Dr. Steiner’s lectures before we started every class.
...Music was taught by Laura who was completely different than me and I think that is why I looked up to her so reverently. She was motherly, humble and soft-spoken. I held her apart from the other instructors, high on a pedestal. She seemed unreal in her goodness.
I have heard that singing is better than prayer in the sense that it brings you closer to God. It’s God-like or angel-like. Perhaps music is the language of the angels. I don’t know. There is a lot of singing in Waldorf schools. 
Here is another inside account of Waldorf teacher training,
this time by a less devoted participant.
Perhaps taking a lead from Kafka,
the author — Andreas Lichte — refers to himself as L.
I have excerpted passages from
Waldorf Pedagogy Introductory Course, 14th May — 11th July, 2001
A warm welcome to the participants, an easy way to solve daily conflicts and a relaxed atmosphere are considered to be of importance. Lack of stress somehow turns into boredom for L. He does not know what to make of the lecturer's monologue on Rudolf Steiner but no one expects him to.
Soon he is to leave the seminary temporarily for the Berlin Rudolf Steiner school. Before he is getting ready to teach he is to witness a play by 6th grade pupils (in Germany usually roughly aged 11-12, WS maybe a year older), the history of Rome. L. is concerned about the depiction of so much bloodshed but suppresses his feeling of discontent wondering if the harmonious mood at the seminary made him overly sensitive.
...Back at the seminary L. talks about being surprised to see 6th graders wade knee-high in blood. He also is surprised not to get any answers, just looks telling him 'One day you'll understand, at the moment you lack the necessary requirements.'
...Waldorf Pedagogy Course, 3rd September, 2001 — 5th July, 2002
A friendly hello which seems less hearty than during the introductory course ... On to Rudolf Steiner; Steiner, Steiner above all else ... Where did all the art go? Down to half a day.
They are being asked if Atlantis is a geographical space or a state of consciousness.  L. feels worn out by this esoteric excursion. Participants are expected to forget everything they had envisioned as true and accept the existence of higher worlds which will subsequently lead to the 'look of the seer'.
Favourite subject of the KNOWLEDGE OF THE HIGHER WORLDS: Mankind being portrayed as one whole: animal kingdom, plant kingdom, mineral kingdom, its genius being expressed in its upright walk. The animals being the last stop, something of a devolution, mankind being the beginning and the end.
L. starts to get an impression of what is taught, Darwin is a thing of the past, Steiner is up-to-date. Having developed out of humans animals somehow are waste. It is important to distance oneself from 'evil' animals who lack morality.
A break. Moaning and groaning it is decided to leave the seminary and drink coffee. Heated discussions as to what precisely was taught ... L. wonders if he had been dreaming in the morning. Unfortunately the subject matter of the next lesson does not live up to his expectations, instead of a few valuable hints helping to improve teaching methods they are being offered the meaning of the four temperaments (sanguine, phlegmatic, melancholic, choleric), if that isn't sufficient one could still consider the 'star children'.
Twentieth century psychology is absent, Freud's name obviously unknown. Being asked about what was being taught the lecturer refers to the four divisions within the class.
...L. loses his sense of time. His goal to become a teacher seems to have vanished into the distant future, all they are dished out is Steiner, Steiner, Steiner. He wonders how his fellow participants are doing. Those who think everything's great had already been anthroposophists — that's how they refer to themselves.
...Differences become more and more evident, conflicts are worsening on both sides, each citing Steiner. Some adore him in a rather cultic fashion, others want to be left alone, some ask whether they'll ever be able to understand all this. Open dispute erupts during the STUDY OF MAN (GA 293). The difference of...higher- and lower-standing peoples ... L. insists such thoughts are dangerous, after all Germany did see where all that can lead. A female participant finishes off the 'discussion' claiming it is clear she ranks higher than someone who's in prison. The lesson over, L. is left speechless.
L. gets the impression the others ... already came to understand [that] anthroposophy puts a lot of emphasis on hierachies, human hierarchies, angel hierachies, leaders ... None of the lecturers consider to offer a summary of a subject: lessons have more the feel of a church service interpreting Steiner's word. Lecturer Klein puts it this way: "I am a missionary on behalf of Steiner."
How to teach geography is the subject offered by lecturer Vormann ... Asian architecture — the pagoda — makes the lecturer conclude the Asian is turning towards the sky — tien. The typical architecture of Northern America being the step pyramid. L. dares to ask: "What about Indians of Northern American — the pueblo architecture? Or the tent of the nomading peoples of the prairies?" "They are irrelevant to the greater oversight, the Indians already were a perishing race," the lecturer responds.
Training for new Waldorf or Steiner teachers takes place in special institutions.
This image shows a class at the Rudolf Steiner College in California, USA.
The photos on the wall depict Rudolf Steiner and the Anthroposophical headquarters.
The image on the blackboard includes the 12 signs of the zodiac (astrology is basic to the Waldorf belief system).
The book on the student's desk (center, bottom) is Steiner's OUTLINE OF ESOTERIC SCIENCE
(original title: OUTLINE OF OCCULT SCIENCE) —
Steiner's main exposition of his esoteric or occult teachings.[Downloaded Sept. 25, 2011; Rudolf Steiner College, http://www.steinercollege.edu/]
In addition to preparing future Waldorf teachers, some Steiner educational programs
claim to provide training for other careers. Sometimes the students reel away astonished and aggrieved.
The following comments refer to the Florida College of Natural Health, a Steiner Education Group member
I do not know to what extent the writer's complaints may be justified.
Other Steiner education institutions may be better — or worse.
"If you go to this campus, you will find a new staff member every week! It's as if they come in, work one week, and hate it, and are replaced in a matter of days. Worst school ever, worst professors, unprofessional, and a waste of time and money. I left Florida and I am currently working towards entering a new school. Oh BTW, this school is not even recognized in some school databases so if you wish to transfer credits, GOOD LUCK. " [http://www.ripoffreport.com/health-care-education/florida-college-of-n/florida-college-of-natural-hea-dd4b5.htm]
"The teachers tend to push pseudo-science and some pressure students to follow their thinking on subjects with no data to substantiate. Staff turnover is high, and the student body is disregarded when demanding higher standards, called 'negative' by the administration. All in all, the school's/Steiner's corporate culture is one of wishful thinking, obfuscation and confusion. Slap dash presentation of educational materials and minimal clinic curriculum are the norm." [http://www.ripoffreport.com/colleges-and-universities/florida-college-of-n/florida-college-of-natural-hea-e4ccn.htm]
"Dear future and fellow students this is a consumer beware website. I have created this website so anyone who has been wronged, deceived, lied to, cheated, and ripped off may post their complaints and thoughts about FCNH. Also to inform all present, past, and future students about the unethical practices occurring at FCNH. Please visit www.studentsagainststeiner.com, this website is under construction but will be completed soon. We are a large group of students based out of Orlando, FL. We have formed a coalition against Steiner and are looking for additional members. Please contact me if you are interested in joining our efforts in taking action against FCNH & revealing the truth about Steiner Education Group & Florida College of Natural Health." [http://www.ripoffreport.com/colleges-and-universities/florida-college-of-n/florida-college-of-natural-hea-effd4.htm]
"I can not warn any one anuff about the poor if any education you will receive, if you listen to these people. They are ripping off kids left and right !and can not and do not intend to deliver what they charge you for! The schools data system is from the stone age , and it is some how always loosing the students data that the school then makes the students make up and pay for ! this is what the tried on me they tried to say that i had missed 6 mounths of school but the problem with their story was i would have lost finac/ aid if this was true! when i called the corp they gave me the run around for 2 weeks then sent me a letter throwing me out of school! " [http://www.ripoffreport.com/federal-government/the-florida-college/the-florida-college-of-natural-d5a7m.htm]
The following course descriptions are taken from
I will present them here as I did on the Waldorf Watch "news" page:
In general, I let the descriptions speak for themselves,
but when I am moved to interject a comment, I indent it
to clearly separate it from the text in the catalogue.
Cosmic and Human Evolution (1.5 credits). This course explores the stages of cosmic and human evolution from Ancient Saturn through Ancient Sun, Ancient Moon and Earth evolutionary cycles, and lays seeds to understand further stages of evolution in Future Jupiter, Future Venus and Future Vulcan stages. Texts include Esoteric Science: An Outline and Spiritual Hierarchies and Their Reflection in the Physical World.
Karma and Reincarnation (1.5 credits). This course is an in-depth exploration of Rudolf Steiner’s original insights into the nature of reincarnation and karma. Texts include Manifestations of Karma, Theosophy, Reincarnation and Karma, World History in the Light of Anthroposophy, and selected lectures from the 8 volumes titled Karmic Relationships.
The Philosophical Foundations of Waldorf Education (7.5 credits). Waldorf education is based on Anthroposophy, a transpersonal and phenomenological world-view [sic]. It is necessary for the Waldorf educator to grasp this view of the human being because Waldorf pedagogy arises directly from this understanding. The curriculum and methods arise from an understanding of this ontology.
Astronomy — Macrocosm, Microcosm (2.0 credits). This course combines viewing the night sky, studying the constellations and rhythmic movements of the planets, and their correlations with the human form, rhythms of life, stages of consciousness and how the human individuality is related to the starry worlds and the Earth. We will discover the relationship between astronomy and the human body, astrology and the human soul, and astrosophy with the human spirit.
Human Development and Pedagogical Implications, Level I (3.0 credits). This course offers a background theoretical foundation to the practical classes in the first year. The causes of learning and behavior difficulties, human development from an anthroposophical perspective, the incarnation process in the first seven years, the twelve senses and movement development are important themes....
• The Four Temperaments (0.5 credits). A study of how to recognize in the child the four temperaments.... • Cosmic and Human Evolution (1.0 credits) [sic]. Through this course, students will understand the evolution of the cosmos, the kingdoms of nature, and of the human being from the standpoint of Anthroposophy. • Seven Planetary Soul Types (0.5 credits) ... [H]ow they relate to the seven visible planets and the constitution of the human being. • The Evolution of Consciousness through Art History. A spiritual overview of the visual arts ... [T]he changing evolution of consciousness of the human being from the ancient mystery centers to the modern age ... [W]orld art within the Post-Atlantean cultural epochs.... • Human Development and Pedagogical Implications, Level II (3.0 credits) ... [S]tudents explore the spiritual archetypes of the human being, as given by Rudolf Steiner, as well as an introduction to Astrosophy ... [S]oul and constitutional types in children ... [M]editative work of the teacher....
• Spiritual Streams and Sun Initiates* (1.0 credits) [sic]. This course is an exploration of the spiritual streams identified by Rudolf Steiner in The Search for the New Isis, selected lectures from Karmic Relationship, and World History in the Light of Anthroposophy. • The Master Thesis Project Course will be introduced as a modern path of initiation,** wherein proficiency to conduct research in a number of different venues allows the individual to gain access to a greater breadth and depth of knowledge....
The Philosophy of Freedom (1.5 credits). The student will develop understanding for the epistemology underlying Anthroposophy. Answering the question, "Can I gain certainty in knowing the world?" affirmatively leads to "Can I become truly free?"
This freedom is not absolute, however. Steiner often spoke of the need for gurus or spiritual guides, such as himself. He also spoke of the crucial difference between the white path of truth (his own) and the black path of falsehood. He said that he apprehended the truths of the white path through his use of “exact clairvoyance” — his occult “discoveries” are virtually unquestionable because they are exactly true. Thus, his followers have the choice between the path of truth and the path of fallacy. Their “freedom” is little more than the power to make a single decision: They can freely decide to believe in Steiner and his system, or they can freely choose to suffer the dreadful consequences of failing to believe in Steiner and his system.***
Here are additional Waldorf teacher training courses
offered in various training programs:
"Karma Studies - We consider such topics as individual, historical and world karma; reincarnation and karma; free will and destiny; laws of karma. Rudolf Steiner lectures used: Manifestations of Karma and A Western Approach to Reincarnation and Karma. The course requires an independent biography project." — Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training [11-12-2011 http://www.bacwtt.org/curriculum-classes/teacher-training/second-year]
"Knowledge of Higher Worlds - In this course we will examine the path developed by Rudolf Steiner in his book How to Know Higher Worlds. In this work Steiner gives exercises and meditation techniques that are designed to deepen, strengthen and ultimately open the human soul to an objective reality beyond the physical senses...." — Arcturus Rudolf Steiner Education Program [11-12-2011 http://www.arcturus.info/foundation.htm]
“Esoteric Science - This course examines the esoteric history of the human being ... Students should leave the course with a basic understanding of the spiritual scientific approach to the evolution of human consciousness. In addition, we will examine tools to spiritual self-development as outlined by Rudolf Steiner ... The evolution of the earth and solar system in relationship to spiritual beings (Old Saturn, Sun, Moon, and Earth; stages of Earth evolution through Atlantis)....” — Center for Anthroposophy [http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/high-school-teacher-education/courses/second-year/foundation-courses/esoteric-science-hs-216/]
“Arts/Art History - ... Art becomes the mediator between the physical, etheric, astral bodies, and incoming ego ... Art classes have the subtle task of touching the high school student’s sacred dreams. They can help set in motion impulses that stir the unfolding of individual destiny....” — Center for Anthroposophy [http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/high-school-teacher-education/courses/third-year/subject-seminars/artsart-history-hs-328/]
“Music in the Light of Anthroposophy - ...This course addresses all those who want to deepen their understanding of music as an empowering soul-spiritual source ... [W]e will explore the different elements of music, discovering how melody, harmony, and rhythm are musical expressions of our threefold nature ... We will explore the intervals — in nature, in movement, and through artistic activity — and learn how they are connected to our own evolutionary path: specifically, how this process of incarnation corresponds to the developmental stages of the child....” — Center for Anthroposophy [http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/renewal-courses/week-one-june-26-july-1/music-in-the-light-of-anthroposophy/]
“Evolving Consciousness II - [W]orld evolution and occult history will be considered from the standpoint of the evolving consciousness of humanity as characterized by Rudolf Steiner.” — Antioch University of New England [http://www.antiochne.edu/registrar/courses/course_detail.cfm?CourseNum=EDT%20586&Section=A&Semester=Summer&CourseYear=2011]
“A Research for Personal and Social Change -This course will work with research methods based upon the essential view of the human being and the basic exercises outlined in ESOTERIC SCIENCE by Rudolf Steiner ... Discussions will include aspects of evolving consciousness and how personal change can influence social change ... Required reading before the first session: chapters 1, 2, 3 & 5 of ESOTERIC SCIENCE....” — Antioch University of New England [http://www.antiochne.edu/registrar/courses/course_detail.cfm?CourseNum=EDP%20604A&Section=A&Semester=Summer&CourseYear=2011]
“Waldorf School Administration - This course will provide an overview of Waldorf school administration ... Class sessions will balance practical aspects with philosophical considerations including karma ... Required texts:...first two chapters of KARMIC RELATIONSHIPS by Rudolf Steiner....” — Antioch University of New England [http://www.antiochne.edu/registrar/courses/course_detail.cfm?Synonym=74365&CourseNum=EDNC%20016&Section=A&print=1]
From the Hawthorne Valley Alkion Center, Hawthorne, New York (USA):
"Alkion Center Now Accepting Applications for 2012-13
"Hawthorne Valley Alkion Center is now accepting applications for its 2012-13 programs [in Anthroposophy, Waldorf teacher training, etc.] ... [3-7-2012 http://alkioncenter.org/news/alkion-center-now-accepting-applications-2012-13]
"Waldorf Teacher Training
"The Waldorf Teacher Training Program at the Alkion Center is a three-year, part-time program. The first two years, Foundation Studies in Anthroposophy,* focus on the study of the written work of Rudolf Steiner... [http://alkioncenter.org/waldorf-teacher-training]
"Foundation Studies in Anthroposophy
"Foundation Studies in Anthroposophy focuses on the study of the written work of Rudolf Steiner and is complemented by intensive artistic work and an introduction to contemplative inquiry. Grounded in the path of inner development, the goal of these courses is to awaken each participant to an awareness of the spiritual basis of our own humanity and its relationship to the being of nature that surrounds us...
"The First Year ... The course includes:
" • Meditative study of Rudolf Steiner's THE CALENDAR OF THE SOUL
" • Learning to Breathe with the Senses
" • THEOSOPHY by Rudolf Steiner - A Look into the Nature of Being Human: Biography, Destiny and Evolution
" • Eurythmy, Painting and Sculpture
" • The Development of Consciousness through Music and Art
" • Biography Seminars
" • [Study of] The Cultural Epochs
"The Second Year ... The course includes:
" • The Six Basic Exercises - Meditation, Self Development and Inner Practice
" • ESOTERIC SCIENCE by Rudolf Steiner
" • PHILOSOPHY OF FREEDOM by Rudolf Steiner
" • Eurythmy, Painting, Sculpture, Music
" • History of Consciousness through the Visual Arts
" • The Practical Application of Spiritual Science* - Guest Speakers in Biodynamic Agriculture, Waldorf Education, Economics, Medicine, Phenomenological Science and the Therapeutic Arts" [http://alkioncenter.org/foundation-studies]
Despite what Waldorf schools often claim, Waldorf teacher training generally centers on the occult doctrines of Rudolf Steiner, and these are what new Waldorf teachers bring with them into their work ("the practical application of Spiritual Science ... [in] Waldorf Education"). Learning to be a Waldorf teacher is not much different from learning to be an Anthroposophist. After all, as Steiner said, "Anthroposophy will be in the school". [For more, see "Here's the Answer", "Spiritual Agenda", and "Soul School".]
Anyone who doubts that Waldorf education is mystical and/or religious should look into the spiritual training that new Waldorf teachers receive, as well as the continuing spiritual education that veteran Waldorf teachers receive throughout their careers. Alicia Hamberg at The Ethereal Kiosk has helpfully summarized lectures given recently at the New Impulse Conference 2012 at the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training [California, USA]. Here are some of the matters discussed in those lectures by Claus-Peter Röh. (Like Ms. Hamberg, I will quote from the summaries posted by the conference organizers.)
[For more on Waldorf teacher training, see "Teacher Training".]
Classes for Waldorf teachers and others offered during the summer of 2012 at the Center for Anthroposophy [New Hampshire, USA]:
“Renewal Courses are designed for a wide range of interests related to Waldorf education and anthroposophy. We offer courses for Waldorf teachers — both new and experienced — along with parents, administrators, trustees, and friends of Waldorf education, as well as for artists and thinkers seeking to deepen their lives through anthroposophy." [3-17-2012 http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/renewal-courses/overview/]
Among the courses to be offered:
◊ “The Mystical Heart of Abraham
“This course will explore through discussion, image, story, and meditation what happens if one takes the three Abraham revelations — Jewish, Christian, and Muslim — not as negating one another but as complementary aspects of a single mystery....
“Following this path...a new vision of the evolution of consciousness and our present human task begins to emerge: one that allows us to see Anthroposophy in a new light....
“...Eurythmy with Cezary Ciaglo [sic].” [http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/renewal-courses/week-one/the-mystical-heart-of-abraham/]
◊ “Cancer: Living Forces and the Soul – Experiences near the Threshold
“In our course we will look at the phenomena connected with different stages of cancer and how the increasing ‘blindness’ of the organism against the illness undermines the body’s inherent ability to develop self-healing powers....
“Through an anthroposophical approach the patient can be seen as a spiritual being who existed before birth. From this perspective the disposition for cancer was acquired before conception in the spiritual realm.
“...Eurythmy with Cezary Ciaglo." [http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/renewal-courses/week-one/cancer-living-forces-and-the-soul/]
◊ “A Bridge across the Threshold: Creating a Living Connection
“Building a bridge between the world of the living and the world of the dead is a central task of anthroposophy. Rudolf Steiner spoke frequently of the importance of the relationship between the living and those who have passed through the gateway of death. Our thoughts are the ‘fields of grain’ from which the dead gather the harvest that is their sustenance. Our memories of those who have died are like works of art that enrich their world, just as paintings or sculpture enhance our experience of the natural world and our surroundings. By connecting consciously with the dead, they can be present to and for us and contribute to our human striving.
“...Eurythmy with Cezary Ciaglo.” [http://www.centerforanthroposophy.org/programs/renewal-courses/week-one/a-bridge-across-the-threshold/]
Training to become a Waldorf teacher is largely indistinguishable from studying to become an Anthroposophist.
Some of the courses now offered at Rudolf Steiner College [California, USA] as part of their Waldorf teacher training program:
• Cosmic Evolution and Inner Realities of Evolution
• Drawing the Seven Planetary Seals
• Karma and Reincarnation and Biography
• Spiritual Streams and Leading Sun Initiates
• Art History and Sacred Architecture
• Evolution of Religions and Esoteric Christianity
• Astronomy, Astrology, Astrosoph
These courses represent one curricular option. A second option delves less deeply into Anthroposophical doctrines; still, the courses in that option are also informed by Anthroposophical beliefs and practices (e.g., "Learning to See the Spirit in the Child" and "Evolution of Consciousness"). [3-21-2012 http://www.steinercollege.edu/anthroposophy?q=node/1587]
The seven Anthroposophical / astrological planetary seals
— representing the seven sacred planets —
are displayed at the top of columns in the Anthroposophical cathedral,
the Goetheanum. [R.R. sketch, 2010.]
Courses offered at the Sunbridge Institute [New York, USA] as part of their Waldorf teacher training program:
Inner Development of the Teacher [Year 1]:
• Anthroposophical View of the Human Being
• Inner Development: “Practical Training in Thought”
Inner Development of the Teacher [Year 2]:
• The Meditative Path of the Teacher
Inner Development of the Teacher [Year 3]:
• Capstone, culminating reflective paper
• Relationship of Waldorf Education to Anthroposophy: Foundation Stone Meditation
The trainees' inner work (i.e., work on their spiritual development) occurs in parallel with other work more focused on the classroom, such as a two-semester course describing child development from an Anthroposophical perspective. [3-21-2012 http://www.sunbridge.edu/home/content.asp?pointid=&mid=6&msection=programs&id=24]
[Temple Lodge Publishing, 2006.
Temple Lodge is an Anthroposophical press;
Rudolf Steiner Press is a distributor for Temple Lodge.]
This meditation was written by Rudolf Steiner and delivered upon the placement of the foundation stone for the worldwide Anthroposophical headquarters, the Goetheanum. From the publisher: “THE FOUNDATION STONE MEDIATION :: Meditative reflection — strengthening thinking and feeling through the will — is one of the main methods of experiencing Anthroposophy. 'The best path to this goal,' says [author Sergei O.] Prokofieff, 'is inner work with the Foundation Stone Meditation, because this meditation is the quintessence of the whole of Anthroposophy....’ [Subjects include] the relationship of the 'Foundation Stone Meditation' to the being Anthroposophia, the spiritual hierarchies, human karma, the Rosicrucian, Michaelic and Grail streams, the Mystery of Golgotha, the two Jesus children, the three spiritual sources of Anthroposophy, and even the Constitution of the General Anthroposophical Society.” [http://www.templelodge.com/pages/viewbook.php?isbn_in=9781902636825]
From the Ethereal Kiosk:
"While browsing my documents I found a helpful little guide for teachers. It’s written by Robin Bacchus (PhD!). He is (or was) a program director at a Steiner teacher training program. The document is called ‘Karma and Reincarnation for Teachers’...." [3-19-2012 http://zooey.wordpress.com/]
[With thanks to Alicia Hamberg.
"Karma and Reincarnation for Teachers" by Robin Bacchus
is available at http://beepdf.com/tag/karma.html.]
Karma and reincarnation are basic Anthroposophical doctrines. And as a Waldorf educator has written, “[T]he purpose of [Waldorf] education is to help the individual fulfill his karma.” — Roy Wilkinson, THE SPIRITUAL BASIS OF STEINER EDUCATION (Rudolf Steiner Press, 1996), p. 52. [See "Spiritual Agenda", "Karma", and "Reincarnation".]
Head of a Waldorf teacher-training program, Alan Whitehead has published a series of "teacher-parent manuals" called the Spiritual Syllabus Series (Golden Beetle Books), outlining his version of the correct Waldorf curriculum. Here's a taste, from volume 15, GAZE BOTH WAYS, Social Studies Class 7 & 8:
"...With a mineral body completely estranged from its divine origins, we of the Aryan epoch, really got into our straps on the good-and-evil path of character development. [paragraph break] Every subsequent culture tells of this timeless struggle, from Ancients [sic] India (Krishna-Kali); Persia (Ahura Mazdao-Ahriman); Egypt (Osiris-Set); Greece/Rome (Apollo/Apollyon), and finally the Judao[sic]-Christian world (Christ-Satan). All of these Beings, both light and dark, are, in part at least, ourselves; locked as we are in mortal combat on the battlefield of the War of Good and Evil. This war will climax, in the far future, with the decisive conflict of the War of All Against All...." (p. 106).
Note: Whiethead is a controversial figure who advocates incorporating Anthroposophy overtly in Waldorf classes. Some of his colleagues in the Waldorf movement think he goes too far. Others are delighted by his approach.
- Compilation and commentary by Roger Rawlings
To visit other pages in this section of Waldorf Watch, use the underlined links, below.
◊◊◊ 5. THE WALDORF APPROACH ◊◊◊
If you'd like more information about any of the topics discussed here,
you might begin by consulting the following resources:
THE SEMI-STEINER DICTIONARY
THE BRIEF WALDORF / STEINER ENCYCLOPEDIA
WALDORF WATCH INDEX
WALDORF WATCH TABLE OF CONTENTS
Some illustrations on each page here at Waldorf Watch
are closely connected to the essay on that page;
others are not — they provide general context.
 Anthroposophical pages that I link to here at Waldorf Watch have a strange way of disappearing. Today, September 18, 2010, I find that the page has been removed. Perhaps this is an innocent coincidence or the natural evolution of a website. In any case, by poking around the Net, you should be able to find plenty of information about Waldorf teacher training. Thus, to the best of my knowledge, as of today here are the Waldorf teacher training programs in North America:*
Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training
Waldorf Institute of Southern California
Rudolf Steiner College
Kula Makua-Adult Waldorf Education
Arcturus Rudolf Steiner Education Program
Waldorf Institute of the Great Lakes
Center for Anthroposophy
Center for Anthroposophy (Antioch/New England Campus)
Waldorf Teacher Training, Eugene
Sound Circle Center
Great Lakes Teacher Training Program
West Coast Institute for Studies in Anthroposophy
Rudolf Steiner Centre - Toronto
Institut Rudolf Steiner au Quebec
* I have subsequently updated some of these addresses.
 Not all Anthroposophists are vegetarians; Steiner didn't require it. But Anthroposophy does seem to exert a special attraction for people in the green, countercultural, and New Age communities.
 Waldorf schools place great emphasis on the arts, but not for the normal reasons. Steiner taught that involvement with the arts puts you in touch with the spirit worlds. See "Magical Arts".
 Steiner taught that Atlantis was a real place, a continent that sank. See "Atlantis and Aryans".