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Pneumatism is one of the twelve fundamental worldviews named by Rudolf Steiner and stands between psychism and spiritualism. In the zodiac it corresponds to the sign of Aquarius. The pneumatist sees individual spiritual beings as the basis of the world.

„If someone is a psychist and, because he is a man of knowledge, inclined to contemplate the world, he comes to say to himself that he must presuppose psychic things in the world. But at the moment when he is not only a man of knowledge, but when he has a similar sympathy for the active, for the active, for the volitional in human nature, he says to himself: It is not enough that there are beings who can only have ideas; these beings must also have something active, must also be able to act. But this cannot be thought of without these beings being individual beings. That is, such one rises from the assumption of the ensoulment of the world to the assumption of the spirit or spirits in the world. It is not yet clear whether he should accept one or several spiritual beings, but he ascends from psychism to pneumatism, to the doctrine of the spirit.

If one has become a pneumatist in reality, it may well happen that he realises what I have said today about numbers, that it is indeed somewhat questionable to speak of a unity in relation to numbers. Then he comes to say to himself: Then it will be a confusion to speak of a unified spirit, of a unified pneuma. And then he gradually comes to be able to form an idea of the spirits of the different hierarchies. He then becomes a spiritualist in the true sense, so that on this side there is an immediate transition from pneumatism to spiritualism.“ (Lit.:GA 151, p. 40f)


References to the work of Rudolf Steiner follow Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works (CW or GA), Rudolf Steiner Verlag, Dornach/Switzerland, unless otherwise stated.
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Index to the Complete Works of Rudolf Steiner - Aelzina Books
A complete list by Volume Number and a full list of known English translations you may also find at Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works
Rudolf Steiner Archive - The largest online collection of Rudolf Steiner's books, lectures and articles in English.
Rudolf Steiner Audio - Recorded and Read by Dale Brunsvold - Anthroposophic Press Inc. (USA)
Rudolf Steiner Handbook - Christian Karl's proven standard work for orientation in Rudolf Steiner's Collected Works for free download as PDF.