Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) and claims to be a path from the spiritual in man to the spiritual in the universe. Steiner believed in the centrality of Jesus Christ and left a creative legacy in many fields, especially education, arts, and agriculture. Rosenstock-Huessy met Rudolf Steiner in 1919. According to Wayne Cristaudo, who wrote me that
“Rosenstock-Huessy has a few pages on Steiner in Die Hochzeit des Kriegs und der Revolution (The Wedding of War and Revolution) – perhaps the key sentence is : ‘he is still only a man of spirit/ mind (Geistesmensch)’ and his spirit is a German/ Goethean one, a little later he writes for Steiner ‘the more universal one is, the more German’ . He also says ‘Steiner is himself a symptom of the disease he wishes to cure.’” [From an email to CJ, Nov. 11, 2014]
I go my own way, but I come to you. It expresses, to me, the need for unconditional liberty of thought along with the equally absolute need for community and trust and love.
My father graduated from Harvard in 1930. What if he had encountered Eugen Rosenstock back in his Harvard years? They only missed being there at the same time by a few years. What if, in some philosophy class, he had encountered Rosenstock's vital Christianity, about the capacity to step into a new future? Would it have made a difference to the later aloneness he felt as the civil rights movement unfolded in Birmingham---and the aftermath of all that, which left him even more isolated and self-doubting?
"What-if" stories can remind us that history, biography, the course of events are, after all, human creations. I sometimes think that one's sense of "what-is"-- the realistic attitude--can best be developed by also cultivating "What-if"--the courage to imagine, to cherish uncommon vision.