PhD Candidate (Doktorand), University of California, Davis/Universität Erfurt
Technological Theodicy: Rudolf Steiner and the Incarnation of Ahriman
Austrian-born esotericist Rudolf Steiner detailed a complex spiritual cosmology, in which a spiritual lord of materialism and technology called Ahriman worked to mechanize human beings and nature and ensnare the entire globe in a spiderweb of electrical frequencies. However, according to Steiner, this “activity” of Ahriman was a necessary development that would cause humanity to evolve spiritually into a new species of advanced beings, whose job would be to love and support those humans who fell a victim to Ahriman and proved unable or unwilling to advance on the spiritual path.
New technologies summoned new demons into the world, which human beings were forced to live with. However, through their own spiritual development they could transform these demons into spirits of good. This paper describes Steiner’s cosmology in relation to Ahriman and technology, demonstrating that modern esoteric ideas are entangled with the development of technology and its perceived effects on humankind.