John Marjoram doesn’t give up and nor do I

Campaigning time again and John Marjoram is back on the trail. The reason I keep writing about John is that he keeps coming to my house as part of his political campaigning, and because he is up to his neck in anthroposophy.
He claims not to know much about anthroposophy. He supports the Steiner movement, has acted in their interests as a councillor, has been a Steiner employee, and is married to an anthroposophist. And yet from what he says he seems really to be unaware of the detail of anthroposophic beliefs.
It is not really surprising when you realise how difficult those beliefs ( found in texts and lectures on the RS archives) are to uncover, let alone decipher. Add in the disinformation handed out routinely by Steiner representatives and apologists, the lies told when they are confronted with uncomfortable truths about their methods, and the smoke and mirrors tactics they use to deflect criticism, and you see how easy it is to be in ignorant bliss about anthroposophy.
I admire John for his hard work and tireless efforts on behalf of what he sees as just causes. He has even been threatened with prosecution for not completing a census because it was run by an arms company. It is admirable to stand up for what you feel strongly about.
Sadly he is deluded when it comes to Steiner.  On politics of course everyone has their opinion. It would be bigoted to hate someone because their political beliefs are different to yours.
John is a Town and District Councillor, former town Mayor and Quaker. I don’t mind him being a Quaker, but equally he does not deserve respect simply for being a member of what today is after all simply a political organisation.
He seems to forget that he has already told me about his Quakerism several times; every time I speak to him. I don’t expect him to remember every conversation he has had with me. We have had many conversations now and each time he tells me he is a Quaker and married to an anthroposophist and is  proud of it. So I think he probably tells people fairly regularly.
So he is married to an anthroposophist with a deep understanding of Rudolf Steiner’s creed and yet is ignorant about it at a fundamental level. How is that possible?
Well it is very common for anthroposophists to  keep quiet about their beliefs. You see, they are unacceptable to most people. Laughable in fact until people find out how the beliefs are put into practise in Steiner “settings” as they like to call them. The business about the gnomes (the ones they teach the children about in school) is quite funny when you first hear about it.
Putting weights on a child’s ankles to “ground” him is not so amusing. Nor is accusing a child of being a “black soul” after questioning his mother about how she had a white child when she is not white herself.
Nor is categorising children according to the size of their head.
Anthroposophists do not openly proselytise. Their beliefs and practices are not widely publicised, even it seems, to spouses when they are not themselves initiated into the cult of anthroposophy. Best to just carry on with your art therapy and your membership of the Anthroposophic Association of Therapeutic Arts (AATA), Registration with the Council for Anthroposophic Health and Social Care (CAHSC) and being a Council member of the International Federation of Anthroposophic Arts and Eurythmy Therapies.
Next time you call John, I am very happy to sit down and explain some of the lesser known aspects of anthroposophy, so that you will be informed in the event of curiosity from the electorate.
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2 comments

  1. Anna

    Hi Helen – I admire your persistence in pursuit of clear thinking. I wanted to mention a conversation I had with an ex-employee of Ruskin Mill recently who, despite being a dyed in the wool Steiner man, has had his views severely shaken by the massive exploitation of some of the students who, according to him were ‘worth’ hundreds of thousands of pounds in terms of government grants and other sources of funding , but who never received value for money in terms of care. And this was because the money was used to build the
    property empire owned by the Steiner-run Novalis Trust ( I don’t know for sure but this probably has charitable status and therefore certain tax advantages too). When he reported his concerns to the trustees of Ruskin Mill he was completely ignored. He now lives and works in Bristol. I’m writing this on my iPhone so apologise for any mistakes…

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