Welcome to the Easter issue of New View. The Christian festival at this time of year informs so many layers of human existence. Many motifs for life can be drawn from the events of what Rudolf Steiner referred to as “The Mystery of Golgotha”. He was clear that the penetration and understanding of those mysteries was only now at a beginning, in our time, and that Christian esotericism will gradually unfold, revealing its deeper meaning, over a much greater period of time. One motif I gather from the events that occurred following the Baptism of Jesus and culminating in the events of Easter is the making New of all things. From a humble human perspective this requires real imagination; perhaps I should say real Imagination; a conscious act of spiritual creating in ones thinking, which can lead to right action in the world. This profound faculty of imagination is what is so often absent when people try to address the many pressing issues of our time; personally and collectively.
Following the publication of the last issue of New View, Winter 2018-19, I received a number of letters unhappy with the conclusion that Terry Boardman came to in his article – implicit in its title – ‘Brexit as a Spiritual Question: Why the EU is the Wrong Direction for Europe and the Modern Age’. Few took any issue with the background that was offered as context for this conclusion, just the conclusion itself. Many of the points raised were good and reasonable. As the Editor of New View I always welcome letters and feedback, of any persuasion, as my going forward with New View is always helped and shaped through such correspondence and sharing of thoughts. These particular letters I decided not to publish, because although I am grateful for them, what I tend to avoid in New View’s published pages is a kind of ‘bulletin board’ where all sorts of views are simply published and aired (and on Brexit, for or against, we can see in the mainstream media that this goes on apace). What I look for to publish, generally (because there is always room for specific exceptions), are contributions that work towards a deeper understanding of the underlying truth of a situation out of authentic experiences and questions. And always with sufficient context for a general readership to grasp what is involved. All authors are responsible for their own conclusions; the reader has to make his or her own mind up as to the merits of a piece of writing placed before them. The letter by John Marking (and responded to by Maarten Ekama) that is published in this issue is an example of an approach that seeks to bring a deeper understanding.
Particularly for those readers living in Britain, Ireland and Europe the questions around Brexit and the political impasse in the British Parliament are troubling enough. But what other things are going on that this is mightily distracting people from? How do we come to a right understanding of all this?
New View has a group of articles centred on Brexit that each in its own way tries to come closer to that understanding. The British Isles by Simon Blaxland-de Lange, explores the cultural components of this collection of countries in an artistic manner. Three articles follow more on the theme of Brexit: Opposites, Brexits and Finding New Ways Forward by Richard Ramsbotham; A Therapy for a Divided Kingdom – Lessons from the Brexit Affair by Dutchman Harrie Salman – a European looking in to our situation; and The Brexit Symptom of Tolkien’s New English Mythology by Richard Cooper, living in Switzerland. Frances Hutchinson then continues her exploration of the world of economics in _The Growth of Financial Capitalism._David Newbatt shares what has inspired him towards the creation of a piece of art, dedicated to Easter and Whitsun, in ‘Oak framed sculpture-painting’.
Renatus Derbidge looks at the impulses on Iona in Christian Love of Nature and the Significance of Place. A compilation of new research into the background to Rudolf Steiner’s popular and eventually dangerous lecture tours in Germany, is one of the topics of NNA – news around the world, compiled by Christian von Arnim. In the centre pages, Matthew Barton pays tribute to his friend and artist Carter Nelson and we feature some of the fruits of his collaboration as a poet with Nelson’s artwork. Readers Letters is followed by Judyth Sassoon exploring evolutionary theories in Goethe and the Giant Sloth: The Faustian strivings of an unusual animal.
Malin Starrett shows (with an experiment in the magazine!) how we perceive colour in Don’t Spoil the Show! Trevor Dance looks at the troubled mind of a genius known to Steiner in The Strange Life of Otto Weininger.
Sam Betts writes from Hungary concerning the spiritual basis of reality in Evolution of Consciousness and the Calendar of the Soul: Owen Barfield, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Imagination.
Finally, Terry Boardman explores further the coming into being of the EU in Brexit as a Spiritual Question: Part II: The Continental/Catholic Dimension.
We needed more pages for this issue, please take your time with it – New View is meant to be a slow, considered read! And thanks for all the support to help us keep going.
Wishing you well, wherever you are,