Anthroposophy

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Anthroposophy is a spiritual philosophy first articulated by Rudolf Steiner. Out of this philosophy came diverse initiatives to transform education (Waldorf education); medicine (anthroposophical medicine; see below); agriculture (biodynamic farming); the arts (e.g. eurythmy); the socio-economic order (Social Threefolding) and other areas of social life. The philosophy also includes an esoteric path, articulated by Steiner in various books including How to Attain Knowledge of Higher Worlds.[1]

The General Anthroposophical Society, which currently has some 60,000 members, has its center at the Goetheanum, the second building of this name designed by Steiner, located in Dornach, Switzerland; the building has been given National Monument status by the Swiss government for its unique architectural qualities. (The first Goethenaum fell to arson in 1921/2.)

Anthroposophical medicine

Anthroposophical medicine is a spiritual therapy technique based on "knowledge of the nature of man," derived from anthroposophy by Rudolf Steiner and Ita Wegman in the 1920s. The Physicians' Association for Anthroposophic Medicine defines it as a holistic extension to conventional medicine. It includes therapeutic biographical and artistic therapies using movement (Eurythmy), music, and painting. Herbal remedies are used, often in homeopathic dilutions; noteworthy is the use of mistletoe extracts for cancer treatments, which have gained considerable recognition in Central Europe.[2][3]

The UK Select Committee on Science and Technology treats it as a group 3 complementary and alternative technique, [4] "cannot be supported unless and until convincing research evidence of efficacy, based upon the results of well designed trials, can be produced."

References

  1. McDermott, Robert A., The Essential Steiner, ISBN 1584200510
  2. Ernst E, Schmit K, Steuer-Vogt MK. Mistletoe for cancer? A systematic review of randomised controlled trials. Int J Cancer 2003;107:262-7, cited in BMJ 2006;333:1293-1294 (23 December)[1]
  3. Physicians' Association for Anthroposophic Medicine
  4. Select Committee appointed to consider Science and Technology, U.K. Parliament (21 November 2000), Chapter 2: Disciplines examined, Definitions of the Various CAM Therapies, Complementary and Alternative Medicine