Welcome to the new website for the Astrosophy Research Center and the first blog in our series of ongoing studies. This new design and ongoing studies is the product of renewed interest in astrosophy as pioneered and developed by Willi Sucher, based on Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual science. Our hope is that these ongoing studies will be a resource to shed further light on Willi Sucher’s expansive body of work. Our goal is to provide all of Willi Sucher’s work freely as it is our belief that this work was offered freely by Willi during his lifetime and must continue to be offered freely to all who seek it. Articles on our ongoing studies page will be intended for those who may not be at all familiar with the work of Rudolf Steiner or the new astrosophy, as well as more advanced students so that each person may come into the study at their own level.
We wanted to launch this new site on January 6th, the date observed in Christianity as Three Kings Day, when the Magi from the east arrived to the child Jesus in Bethlehem to acknowledge him as their king. (Jan 6th is also celebrated as Epiphany, the baptism of Jesus by John and the incarnation of the Christ). These events will be discussed in the light of astrosophy in future articles, but for the student who wishes to reference Willi on the star of Bethlehem, which the Magi followed, see Willi’s Cosmic Christianity.1These magi were initiates who were able to read the starry script and knew that their great leader was born in the city of David. So, as we launch our new site, with new images of modern humans gazing to the stars, we are reminded of the ancient times when the stars once spoke to those magi and guided humanity.
The website images are photos of the starry heavens with a human being gazing out into the expanse. The homepage includes a verse given by Rudolf Steiner which encapsulates the past, present and future of humanity’s relationship to the starry cosmos. These images and the verse were chosen as the website theme because on several levels they represent the mission of the Astrosophy Research Center. First, the images are of the human being looking to the actual stars; not ancient star pictures or astrological depictions, but the stars as we see them. Willi Sucher was committed to taking a modern knowledge of the stars based on scientific observation and uniting this with the insights of Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual science regarding the nature of the human being and cosmos. He wrote in 1981, “In our search for a new star wisdom or astrosophy, we must find the true relationship between the world of the stars and the human being…with strictly scientific methods. This can be accomplished by a healthy and congenial combination of the science of nature and the science of the spirit.” 2 Willi always grounded his research in this combination. For example, Willi works with the constellations of the ecliptic (the Sun’s path, known as the zodiac) using the scientifically delineated unequal divisions of the constellations accepted by modern astronomy. He also incorporates both the geocentric (earth as center) perspective, which is our experience of the stars, as well as the heliocentric (sun as center) perspective which include working with the apsides and nodes of the spheres as known by modern astronomy, yet discovering the deeper spiritual meanings of these elements of the spheres.
A second reason for the use of the photos on the site is to suggest the mood in which the human being should stand before the world of stars as a basis for developing a new astrosophy. It is hoped that the mood suggested in the photos is one of awe and reverence before the heavens; a mood perhaps each of us has felt on gazing into the starry night. The path of astrosophy is no different than the path of spiritual development in anthroposophy. This path begins with what the senses present; and from that healthy perception as a foundation, the human being gradually develops higher organs of perception. The human being “beholds the world through his senses and assimilates what he perceives by means of his intellect and the other faculties of his soul. Beyond this there are three further stages of knowledge, of cognition.”3 Yet the inner attitude of the pupil is essential for the student to ascend in further stages of spiritual knowledge. This attitude of soul is a crucial component of any path of spiritual study, which astrosophy is, and must begin with a sense of reverence and devotion to the world. For knowledge alone is insufficient to achieve the goal of knowing the spiritual realities behind the stars. “The initiate has only acquired the strength to lift his head to the heights of knowledge by guiding his heart to the depths of veneration and devotion.”4
Finally, to conclude this introduction to the new website, building on the contemporary starry photos and the intended mood of soul communicated by the images, the home page features a verse spoken by Rudolf Steiner (Given in a lecture Dec. 25, 1922) which is the foundation for the goals of a new astrosophy. It describes humanity’s journey in relation to the stars and concludes with: “There grows and ripens what human beings speak to the stars. To be aware of this speaking can become strength for Atman.” In this one statement lies the heart of Willi Sucher’s life work. Astrosophy is not an alternative form of astrology but rather a new path to speaking to the stars. It turns our direction full circle, from receiving to giving. Our calling as we become human is to be conscious co-creators with the beings of the higher realms, to become brothers and sisters rather than children of the gods. In this sense the gods await with great expectation for us to bring to the cosmos what humanity is to bring for the furtherance of cosmic evolution. Therefore our working in astrosophy must continually bear in mind that it serves the greater cosmos, not our own egos. We no longer are to await their guidance and direction, for this is no more. The entire body of Willi’s work is based on this speaking and all future studies will be written with this point of view. Astrosophy as envisioned by Willi Sucher is as revolutionary for our humanity as is the entrance of the Christ into the earth, for it was from that event that the earth began its journey to become a spiritual Sun. The Christ is the leader in this becoming. Astrosophy asks of us to participate in this becoming.
1 Willi Sucher, Cosmic Christianity and the Changing Countenance of Cosmology, 96-97
2 Willi Sucher, Isis Sophia II, Introduction to 1981 Edition, 5
3 Rudolf Steiner, The Gospel of St. Luke, Lecture 1, 20-25
4 Rudolf Steiner, Knowledge of the Higher Worlds and Its Attainment, Chapter 1, 7