Rudolf (Rudolf Joseph Laurence) Steiner, who was of German-Austrian origin, was born on 25 February, 1861 He was born in a small village, Kraljevec, then within the borders of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. Today, it is part of Croatia.
His childhood and youth was spent in and around Vienna, in Steiermark, and in Burgenland.
His early work was inspired by the writings of Johann Wolfgang Goethe. He was translator of his work . He studied sciences, Mathematics and Natural history at his college level and continued his enquiry into spiritual scientific work . He lectured extensively about Theosophy. After coming out of Theosophical Society, Steiner formed Anthroposophic Society in 1912. At the same time, he introduced the art of movement called Eurythmy. His interest and work in three-fold social functioning of the society led to starting the first Waldorf school in cigarette factory of the same name in Stuttguard.
Waldorf Education made real inroads in the field of education and the name of Anthroposophy and Rudolf Steiner became familiar because of the Waldorf schools in various parts of world. In 1920 steps started towards building Anthroposophic Medicine as Rudolf Steiner started work with Homeopathic Doctors and Physicians. Steiner in his 20s worked as a tutor in a wealthy Viennese Businessman’s family and that probably was the seed for his deep understanding and study of children and young adults with disability. He wrote his book on Curative Education and Social Therapy and a movement in Curative Education started in 1924 which was carried forward by Karl Konig later on.
During his lifetime Steiner travelled and lectured widely through Europe and Britain. Recognising the need for social change and reform, all of Steiner’s work has been evolutionary. He brought new perspectives to many professions and fields apart from Medicine, Education, Curative Education to Agriculture, Architecture, Movement . He built the headquarters at Gotheanum in Switzerland , A School of Spiritual Science. Even during World War I, workers from around Europe, including citizens of warring countries, cooperated without incident in its construction.
Steiner gave lot of importance to healing through Education, Psychological work and Medicine. However, his lectures related to Psychological well-being were also given to doctors because at that time Psychotherapy was seldom practised all by itself. His works were later adapted to more specialised psychological work by Bernard Lievegoed, Karl Konig and Ad Dekkers. The work of these stalwarts is the foundation on which today’s Anthroposophic Psychology and Counselling is based.