by Manfred Schmidt-Brabant
translated by Carol Brousseau
ISBN 0904693848

The first three chapters of this book are transcripts from lectures held 16-17 May 1992 during the conference for homemakers at the Goetheanum, edited by the Verlag am Goethaenum. Chapter 4 is a condensation of lectures held at the village community Lautenbach in 1986, edited by the Verlag am Goethaenum. (from the title page)

Overstrain is always at the bottom of things. The homemaker has a significant amount of work to do which she can hardly manage physically. A deep hopelessness arises, leading to loneliness. Children, kitchen and expectations; she feel isolated with these tasks. In addition there is the lack of inner stimulation; while she is doing (apparently) boring things, the rest of the world remains closed to her. Furthermore her bad conscience plagues her, for her ideal is unachievable. A feeling of meaninglessness takes hold . This is paired with longing deep in her sould for meaning in her everyday work, for freedom — also a longing for love, which raises life onto a higher plane.
(pg 4)

All human activity takes place within a certain tension. This arises between the ideal — a career ideal, a life ideal, or a religious ideal — and the impossibility of living up to it.
(pg 21)

The six basic exercises for moving towards a spiritual understanding of homemaking:

1) concentration exercise
2) initiative exercise
3) equanimity
4) positivity
5) freedom from bias
6) persistence
(pg 29)


Well, that’s a starting place for sharing some of this book with you.

It is my intent to read it again in the coming days and study it more fully. I did my usual first quick read-through so that I could see how everything works together, and then my real thought-time comes upon the next, slower, pass through.

Has anyone else read this book already?