Video: Steiner, Tomberg and the Heart of Christ

Here is my latest video, continuing my explorations on Rudolf Steiner, Anthroposophy and Valentin Tomberg—which also highlights extraordinary thoughts from Tomberg regarding the Cult of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

For this Counter-Reformation devotion pioneered by the Jesuits would be anathema to Anthroposophists . . . convinced as they are that Jesuitism amounts to an atavistic movement towards a past that is dangerous to us.

And yet, as I explore in this episode, Tomberg came to see the Cult of the Sacred Heart in a very different light to anything Anthroposophists could easily contemplate.

For Tomberg no longer placed his hope in Anthroposophy to save the soul of humanity, but rather what this video explores. And, as will be evident, he placed his hope in the Church and impulses of renewal in the Church—such as this great cult of devotion, which began after 1673, when St. Margaret Mary Alacoque beheld His Sacred Heart in Paray-le-Monial in France.

And as we descend ever more into technocratic hell, this needs to be remembered. (To say the very least.)

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Here we feature some of Tomberg’s profound words from his last public writings. Indeed, they feature in the final long, dense paragraphs of Covenant of the Heart, now retitled Lazarus Come Forth and we take the liberty of breaking up the long, dense paragraphs for easier reading from a screen. I have also added italics, whilst Tomberg’s original italics have been placed in bolded italics:

There have been (and still are) times in Europe and elsewhere during which for whole nations the life of the soul as such has been (and still is) in grave danger, having been smothered and reduced to a minimum.

This holds not only with respect to the tidal wave of materialism that has flooded across the world in this century, but also for the outpouring of ‘intellectual enlightenment’ during the age of rationalism in the eighteenth century which paved the way for materialism.

At that time the danger facing the human soul was so great that, in order to avert it, a special intervention from heaven proved necessary as a preventive measure.

This took place during the second half of the seventeenth century. It was then that the revelation of the most Sacred Heart of Jesus occurred.

This led to the cult of devo­tion to the most Sacred Heart of Jesus which spread rapidly in Catholic countries and took root there.

Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus was to save the soul of humanity.

For with the intellectual enlighten­ment the danger threatening to break in upon human beings was that of the centaur.

Human beings would have been turned into a kind of centaur—a being consisting of head and limbs (intellect and will), but without heart—that is, a ‘clever beast’.

Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus had the task of rekindling the heart. Thereby the light, warmth, and life, streaming from the heart of Jesus, was to counteract the will-to-power and the intellect serving this will. 

Be that as it may, the soul–understood as the most refined and deepest life of the heart–is by no means certain of survival, not even within Christian, civilized mankind.

All kinds of dangers threaten, and destruction is an ever-present danger.

The life of the soul has to be cultivated and stimulated, as took place (and is still taking place) with the help of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. What deeply moving moral deepness and beauty can be seen and experienced through devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus! 

Valentin Tomberg, Covenant of the Heart, p. 254-255.

We will not enter into these lines here—as the video itself is devoted to contemplating them.

I will note, though, that I am unusually happy with this episode. Despite many flaws and crudities, it is one of my favourites.

Also, I have been tardy in posting it here at this site. In part, though, I have been consumed by an extremely long piece (12,000 words!) which I hope to post very soon with further thoughts on Tomberg, Steiner and related matters.

Finally, I would draw attention to one last thing in the video. At about the one-hour twenty-minute mark, I make an extended tribute to the late, great Michael Frensch.

Michael Frensch was a profound thinker and almost certainly the leading authority on Tomberg in the world and co-author of the major German biography of Tomberg.

He was also a profound man of the heart, who befriended me many years ago and personally helped me more than I can ever say.

As I say in the video, he was truly one of the finest people I have ever met in this world. One of a handful . . .

My wife Kim and I have been shocked and deeply saddened by his untimely passing this last Spring and more needs to be said about this at this site.

For now, though, there is my video tribute and I also point readers to a review (of sorts) that I did of one of his very few publications in English.

Yes, more needs to be said. The 12,000 word piece going up soon is hardly unrelated to his great life and untimely passing, though this influence is more implicit in the upcoming article than explicit.

Books from Roger Buck

Foreword for Monarchy by Roger Buck

Classics from Valentin Tomberg

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