One reason why parents do not realise what they are getting into when they choose a Steiner school is that many of the words used within the schools and within anthroposophy mean something completely different to what most people would assume.
We already touched on the confusion around “humanist” and how it means something different within Steiner.
Another word which has a different meaning to those outside is “materialist”. To those within Steiner this word means non-spiritual.
Anyway some more “doublespeak” was identified by Sharon Lombard in her very helpful article and I think it is useful to make a list, so we all know what we are talking about.
Psychic sight has been changed to imagination
The art of magic has been changed to Art
Sermon has been changed to lecture
Occultist has been changed to scientist
Prayer has been changed to verse
The true nature of man (according to reincarnation) has been changed to child development
Nature altar has been changed to nature table
Pentagram has been changed to star
Religion has been changed to science
Sectarian has been changed to non-sectarian
It is really no wonder parents are confused – they are being misled.
When asked about anthroposophy, a teacher answers that it is “The study of man”. Some people just think anthropology is being mispronounced.
It all works to the advantage of the schools. The less most parents know about anthroposophy the better, as far as they are concerned, otherwise awkward questions will be asked.