Thursday, 6 April 2017

Ahriman: the demon of bureaucracy

Whenever Ahriman sees a committee at work compiling statues, he is in his element! Point 1, Point 2, Point 3... First this will be done, then that; thirdly this member has these rights, fourthly that member ought to do such-and-such. The member would not dream, of course, of respecting these rights, nor doing what it says at all... But this part of it does not matter. The important thing is to compile the statutes and cultivate the Ahrimanic spirit.

Ahriman would like people to be active, but everything must be run along programmed lines. Everything should be forced into legal terms... Every morning, a person should (as it were) find a list lying on his bedspread telling him what to do throughout the day, and he should do it mechanically...

We do, of course, now and again see modern human beings rebelling against the work of Ahriman; grumbling about bureaucracy, which is absolutely Ahrimanic - complaining about the stereotyping of education and so on. But as a rule they only fall deeper into what they are trying to get away from.

The only thing that can lead us out from all this, is a complete change of attitude; a turning towards knowledge of the spirit, to the kind of thing that will once more fill our thinking with genuine spirituality - so that the living spirit can take hold of our whole being, and not merely our head.

From a lecture by Rudolf Steiner - 1921.