Here’s an interesting example of what Rudolf Steiner extols as the truth for our material world.  Please remember that the following quote and others are bases upon which Biodynamic farming is founded.

As an aside, let me say, how perplexed I am about my own industry.  I think of my fellow vintners as educated, enlightened, erudite, sophisticated, worldly people and yet some of my associates are embracing a philosophy of farming which I consider consistent with the uneducated ignorant peasant farmer of the Middle Ages.  If I was a biodynamic vintner and I read the following passage (or from my June 4 post) I would be embarrassed and humiliated that I had been duped into accepting Biodynamics into my work life.  I wonder if most Biodynamic vintners have read Steiner’s actual words – I doubt it?

From  “Spiritual Foundations for the Renewal of AGRICULTURE” by Rudolf Steiner, published 1993 from the Bio-Dynamic Farming and Gardening Association, Inc. – page 41- 42, lecture 2, originally given on June 10, 1924:

 “Thus, if we look at an animal with regard to its shape and coloration, and also the structure and consistency of its substance, we see the effects of Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars as we proceed from the animal’s nose toward its heart, and the effects of  Venus, Mercury, and Moon as we move beyond its heart toward its tail.

      People who are interested in these things should really develop their knowledge of how to observe form.  It is really extremely important to develop this capacity.  Go to a museum sometime and look at the skeleton of any mammal, and the following in mind as you do: The primary influence at work in the formation of the head is the radiance of the Sun, the direct radiation of the Sun as it streams into the mouth.  And depending on other conditions, which we will discuss later, one animal exposes itself to the Sun differently than another; a lion exposes itself differently than a horse, and it is this exposure that determines how the head and adjacent parts are formed.  So, at the front end of the animal, we are dealing with the direct action of the Sun in the forming of the head.  Now, you will recall that sunlight also approaches the Earth in another way, by being reflected by the Moon.  We have to take into account not only the direct sunlight, but also the sunlight reflected by the Moon.  This reflected sunlight is quite ineffective when it shines on an animal’s head.  But light reflected by the Moon becomes highly effective when it falls on an animal’s hind end.  Look at the formation of the hind end of an animal skeleton and its characteristic relationship to the form of the head.  Cultivate a sense for these contrasting forms, for the way the thighs are attached, the way the lower end of the digestive system is formed, in contrast to the opposite poke, which is formed from the head inward.  There, in an animal’s front and hind ends, you have the contrast between the Sun and the Moon.”

 “If you follow this up, you will find that the Sun’s influence extends right up to the heart, stopping just short of it – and that Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn work in forming the head and the blood – and that from the heart backwards, the influence of the Moon is supported by Mercury and Venus.”  Bold and underlining added

As a parent I would not allow this to be taught in my children’s schools and I suspect that most educators would agree with me, so why would serious wineries embrace such nonsense?  If it shouldn’t be taught in our schools then it shouldn’t be used in our vineyards.

 While this passage deserves an A+ in Creative Writing 101, it completely substantiates that Rudolf Steiner was either delusional or an outright fraud.   I also submit that because of statements like this, all credibility for Biodynamics is lost.  How on earth can supporters of Rudolf Steiner defend this passage?  

Stuart Smith



  1. Realy excellent article. I’ve observed your web page about google and will visite it regulary.

  2. Amber says:

    Most of the Biodynamic growers I interviewed for my research project really paid little to any attention to Steiner nor his Agriculture Course. When I brought up some of this types of items from Steiner’s work (such as his belief in “gnomes” and root spirits) most of them just shrugged their shoulders and said that Biodynamics has move on from Steiner and is “more scientific now”.

    Today, most BD adherents follow the writings of Nicolas Joly, Alan York, Mike Benzinger, Monty Waldin, James Milton and Demeter itself. These modern-day disciples are the ones that are presenting Biodynamics as the superior option and, yes, they even stake scientific footing for their claims.

    I think you have a great idea for a blog but I think if you truly want to get at the heart of the modern day Biodynamics movement, you need to tackle the writings of these modern-day disciples. To many BD growers, Steiner is an after-thought and his writings are as archaic as the modern medicine views the writings of Hippocrates.

    I highly recommend taking on Nicolas Joly’s work like “Biodynamic Wines Demystified”, “Wine from Sky and Earth” and “What Is Biodynamic Wine: The Quality, the Taste, the Terroir “. You will find just as much off the wall pseudoscientific material as in Steiner but painted and packaged in modern language.

    Plus, considering that Joly makes one of the world’s most highly sought after wines and is such a vocal, visible proponent of BD, his writings stand to influence more growers towards converting to Biodynamics than Steiner’s ever will.

    • Bryan R says:

      Are you saying that modern day Biodynamics folks think that Steiner was wrong? If so where do they say Steiner was wrong (or lying) and why are they now correct? If the foundation of a building is faulty then the whole structure is suspect. Thus, if the modern day proponents of Biodynamics refute part of Steiner’s theory then you don’t have Biodynamics. You have a different theory or belief system. It sounds as if the modern day folks are choosing to believe only the parts of Steiner’s theory that they want to believe. If Steiner was wrong about the other facts then why is he correct about any of it?

  3. Morton Leslie says:

    I notice no immediate defense to Steiner has been submitted so I thought I might help.

    If you want to defend Steiner the first step is to shift the topic and attack science. You begin by pointing out that science cannot answer every question. (And who can, particularly if you are a scientist, argue with that assertion.) You pretend that science claims to have an answer to everything, then you follow it with an example of an instance where something developed with science was misapplied. Fear of GMO’s or misapplication of pesticides are good examples. Or you completely make up a statement that is difficult to contradict. “Modern agriculture has reeked havoc on the environment.”

    Once you have discredited science you then make some general statement like, Steiner was spiritual and there were a lot of things back then that weren’t known which make some of his statements seem odd. But there were things that he instictively knew about farming that were of help at the time. You say that Steiner came to the rescue of European farmers who “approached Steiner (noted scientist, philosopher, and founder of the Waldorf School) after noticing a rapid decline in seed fertility, crop vitality and animal health.” (a Demeter statement) This is far enough in the past that most people don’t really know the circumstances that actually existed at the time nor do they know that it was Steiner who approached farmers rather than vice versa. Also few can document that seed fertility had not in fact declined, crops were more vital and productive than ever, as were livestock.

    Now is where you bring in Gaia and Mother Earth, the notion that the earth itself is an organism with self-regulatory functions and that Science and Man stands apart from that. You point out how Steiner and his biodynamics recognized the interconnectedness of things. (We all saw Avatar and know how interconnected things were on Pandora.) Now is the opportunity in the argument to make any statement you want to associate biodynamics with good things. More fertile soils. More nutritious food. Wines that better reflect terroir. A healthier planet. This all must be true because we all know that biodynamics is natural, that natural is good and that natural makes a kind and gentle Mother Nature happy. And happier Na’vi too.

    Finally, you go for the kill. It is Science that lacks the intellectual curiosity. It is Science that closes off its mind to things it might otherwise understand. It is the Biodynamicist who has the intellectual high ground and the open mind.

    With that you are pretty well set with your argument, unless someone actually checks the facts or ponders the concept of what is or is not natural.

    • biodynamicshoax says:

      You are so right! Steiner was as crafty as PT Barum. I’m hoping to do a complete post, or several, on just how slight-of-hand his lectures and writings are.

      Thanks again,

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