The mushroom is, according to Rudolf Steiner, ‘a flower without definition’. He says:

‘If you grasp what I have now said, my dear friends, you will grasp the idea of Spirit. I have said that the whole plant is really a leaf manifesting in different formations. This cannot be pictured in the physical sense; something must be grasped spiritually — something that transforms itself in every conceivable way. It is spirit that is living in the plant kingdom. Now we can go further. We can take a plant that is normal and healthy because its seed has been properly placed in the earth, it has absorbed the gentle sun of spring, then the full summer sun and has been able to develop its seeds under the weakening sun of autumn. But suppose a plant exists in such conditions of nature that it has no time to develop a root, an adequate stem, leaves or petals, but is obliged to unfold very rapidly — so rapidly indeed that everything about it lacks definition. Such a plant becomes a mushroom, a fungus.

‘There you have two extremes: a plant that has time to differentiate into all its detailed parts, to develop roots, stem, leaves, flowers, fruit; and a plant placed in such conditions of nature that it has no time to form a root, with the result that everything about it remains indication only; it cannot develop stem and leaves, and is obliged to unfold rapidly and without definition the principle underlying the formation of petals, fruit and seed. Such a plant only just manages to take its place in the earth and unfolds with amazing rapidity what other plants unfold slowly. Think, for example, of the corn poppy. After slowly putting out its green leaves it can proceed to unfold its petals, then the stamens, then the jaunty pistil in the centre. But a mushroom must do all this very rapidly; there is no time for differentiation, no time for exposure to the sun, which would bring the beautiful colours, because the sun is absent during its brief period of development. In the mushroom we have a flower without definition; development has taken place far too rapidly. Here, too, there is fundamental unity. Two quite different plants are basically the same.’ [Steiner, R. GA 216.]


12 thoughts on “mushroom

  1. Pingback: squirrel « zooey
  2. Intersting. I had never heard of Hasenbrot. It’s apparently called ‘knippfryle’ in Swedish, a name that makes absolutely no sense at all as for as bunnies are concerned. Well, not even without bunnies. It is quite common in southern to mid-Sweden (

    (Here’s waldorfmama’s bunny bread. Bunny buns, that would be something though!!)

    Some truly horrific gnome/fairy art work from the Twig and Toadstool…

  3. toadstool
    also from today. But I was so annoyed by that little twig on the right side of the photo that I didn’t want to include it in the post. I love these shrooms though.

  4. frankly, when I look at blogs like that I just think “I am not worthy’. These girls are so creative & the point is: ‘I want to create a lovely world for my child’. I admit that Steiner ed turned me into a flaming atheist glowing with cynicism – but beloved by my children & dogs for comedy value if for nothing else. Yet I once knitted. I know the smell of wet wool. They’re praiseworthy even if the art is awful & the Waldorf obsession a hideous occult cul-de-sac lined with evil faeries. Read the small-print sisters.

    How did you get Sune to eat that, zooey?

  5. It’s natural. He knows waldorf people eat everything that is natural. Can’t get more natural than this — it’s more natural than the crafted toadstools and gnomes.

    And all the children really long for is plastic toys like the stuff all non-waldorf kids own…! Not that this is attractive to parents, but they’re knitting a dream world for their children — an illusion the children actually see right through most of the time.

  6. I think that’s the only way to knit it. It’s like when you knit your own paradigm. All these facts and this reality stuff gets stuck in between, so as to continue to knit despite these disturbances, the only way forward is to allow for much space between stitches. Large needles help. Between the stitches, the plastic toys hang, contaminating paradise.

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