A Course of Platonist Studies in Anthroposophy***

(***a Path of Cognition - of the Rising of the Sun in the Mind)

My name is Joel A. Wendt.  I am a Platonist, and have written widely in the field/stream of thought we call: Anthroposophy.  From these pages I am offering various courses for members and friends, of the Anthroposophical Society, as well as any others that want to consider such a journey.  These courses require no fees, and no travel as they can be taken electronically.  I have written several books and dozens of articles, most of which can be read on my website: Shapes in the Fire.  If you want to purchase a book, they can be obtained at the cost of being printed (I take no creator fee) at my bookstore: Joel Wendt's Theory of Everything Emporium.  Certain books at the bookstore can also be downloaded as e-books for no cost at all.  Additional related materials can be found on my YouTube Channel: the foolish philosopher, which has multiple themes and over 270 videos. 

The electronic means includes: e-mail, Skype and Google Hangout.  I can handle several people at the same time, such as a study group.  If desired people can visit me in my home in Central Massachusetts: 6 Monticello Drive, Paxton MA, 01612.  My office phone number is: 916-671-5727.  I also have two e-mail addresses: hermit@tiac.net and joel232001@gmail.com.

Courses do require work, often preparation.  I will refer to this preparation-work in the course description.  Potential students need to realize they are already the right person, in the right place, and at the right time.  There is not something you are not that you now have to be.  Providence and Karma (Love and Justice) have done their work.  Where you are is where you need to be.  You also do not, under any circumstances have to take this course, or after taking it, complete it.  We swim in seas of wisdom, and are meant to chart our own courses in all things.  Your own biography is the Great Teacher.

The foundational course is called: Sacramental Thinking, and treats as the main treasure of Steiner's life the self-consciousness metamorphosis of thinking.  Some familiarity with Steiner's works on cognition may be useful: GA-2 A Theory of Knowledge Implicit in Goethe's World Conception; GA-3 Truth and Knowledge (Steiner's dissertation); and, GA-4 The Philosophy of Spiritual Activity.  My own writings on cognition can be found in many places such as Living Thinking in Action; Cowboy Bebop - and the physics of thought as moral art; The Idea of Mind; and pragmatic moral psychology.  All of those writings of mine (and a couple of others) are collected in the small book: Sacramental Thinking, which costs $6.25 plus shipping, or zero as an e-book.

One can begin the foundational course without a great deal of preparation, although it is helpful to be ready to do some inner work.  Everyone starts out in an individual place, and so discovering as precisely as possible where that is can determine where to go next.   All choices of this sort are up to the student.  Sacramental Thinking begins as an instinct, then becomes a skill, a craft, and finally an Art.  Every Path for the Rising of the Sun in the Mind takes its own course.   As our soul/spirit seeks spiritual freedom, that must already arise - from the beginning - out of that same spiritual freedom.  We must choose a course of inner action/doing.  This is not intellectual knowledge by the way, but rather the kind of knowledge that only comes from doing.  Who of us learned to ride a bike by studying a text?  Or to walk, or run, or talk?  Lest ye become again as little children, ye cannot enter the kingdom of heaven.

As we strive to come awake to all the potentials of thinking and thought, it is helpful to engage in some kind of pursuit of knowledge.  Sacramental Thinking is how we do something, so there needs to be a what as well.  Method needs to produce content.  Any Idea (concept) also has its corresponding Perceived/Experienced Reality (percept).  Generally speaking the experience comes first and the concept/Idea second.  Although, when we start to practice the Art of this Rising of the Sun in the Mind, experience and thought will begin to arise simultaneously.

As a consequence of these facts, it then becomes useful to the student to have an interest or a riddle that they want to master with the evolving thinking.  This can be something as straightforward as raising children and running a home, or as intellectually challenging as the study of mathematical physics.  We are free to choose any What, and can have many such interests.  The How then develops in relationship to the practical experiences of seeking knowledge of the What.

In order to teach that How I have to give examples or my personal "Whats".  These then are the next courses, which hopefully will help the student learn how to approach their riddle, or What, systematically, scientifically, and with fully self-aware thinking.  The first skills to be mastered are organic thinking (Goetheanism), followed by pure thinking.  Again, this is a subject learned by doing, which means exercising the will.  The intellect has a role, but in order to appreciate the needed distinctions we have to speak of: the will-in-thinking.  There is doing, and it lies in the doing of thinking, or the will-in-thinking ... even perhaps what Steiner tried to point toward as: heart thinking.  Anyway, the courses include the work I have done that concerns Christianity, the work that concerns Anthroposophy and the Anthroposophical Society, and the work that I have done that concerns our shared social/political life.  The reader of this course-introduction might go to these last links and simply glance down the page to get a bit of an overview.

About the will-in-thinking: It consists of two types of basic actions: the attention and the intention.  The attention is where we focus our thinking activity.  That is "what" do we think about (with, within, or as).  The intention is why we think about this "what".  This is where the moral element enters in - it is the why - i.e. the intention.  Self observation of our inner experience will more or less immediately confirm these facts.

If someone has an interest in taking a course, they should just begin by sending me an e-mail (preferable), or if necessary by calling me on the phone.