In 1912, esoteric Christian mystic and clairvoyant visionary Rudolf Steiner wrote his Calendar or the Soul as a yearly meditation. The meditations were to provide a “mood” for each season and cycle of the year, broken down into weeks, thus 52 meditations in total. This mood is to help our souls merge with the vibes of the Earthly and cosmic changes that occur as the planet tilts and spins each year.
The calendar is in tune with the cardinal Christian festivals: Easter, St. John’s Tide, Michaelmas, and Christmas; Easter being the resurrection of Christ, St. John’s Tide being the celebration of the Holy Spirit (Christ consciousness) entering Jesus as he is baptized by John the Baptist, Michaelmas is the contemplation of death, a calm and reassuring movement of the soul inward, knowing that the promise of rebirth is always to come.
Steiner begins with Easter because he associated the mystical significance of this holiday with the birth of the “I”, which is represented by the resurrection of the Christ. Of course, it’s obvious and fitting that Spring and the “pagan” associations with Easter are about beginnings and rebirth as well. Despite the fact that the calendar has a specific beginning, one can join in and begin any of the meditations at any time; the soul is always fit for reflection, regardless of the season.
The moods are focused as such: from Easter through Michaelmas (Spring through Autumn) our senses move outward. Consciousness/ our soul extends from the Earth to the Cosmos. This is evident in seasonal plant growth as during this time they expand and lengthen. From Michaelmas through Easter, (Autumn to Spring), the soul is focused inward as we withdraw into ourselves and retreat into our homes for the Winter. The plants wither away from view as their energies are now drawn underground focused on root growth instead of leaf growth.
A note about myself and the practitioner of these meditations:
While those with a Christian background will no doubt be more familiar with the language herein, in no way are these meditations limited in usefulness nor comprehensiveness to someone with little or no understanding of the Christian calendar or heritage. The “moods” evoked are within all of us, as we all participate with the seasonal changes of our planet. Just as a Jewish person can easily be moved by the Sufi poems of Rumi, so can anyone be impassioned by the musings of Steiner.
I myself was raised a Christian, yet until I read Steiner I had never heard of the festivities of Michaelmas or St. John’s. I also was not familiar with the concept of mystic Christianity, and certainly not the “esoteric/occult” side of the story that Steiner brings forward with fervor. My upbringing was rather conservative and didactic, and because of that, in my 20′s I drifted away from the religion in search of…well, I wasn’t sure. (Though later I realized I was searching for the mystical.) After discovering many other religions and beliefs, I stumbled upon Steiner and found myself coming full circle, back to the faith of my childhood, though this time, with a more personal and deeper understanding of familiar characters, stories, and symbols. I do not yet know if I plan to call myself a “Christian.” However I do know that Christ is alive in me and it is in the name of Christ that I take refuge.
It is with an open heart to all seekers of any walk that I share these meditations; may they sweetly stir your soul.