to my Phenomenology site
On this website you will find information on Observing, Phenomenology
(Goethean science), the Twelve senses, Rudolf Steiners Basic
exercises, Threefoldness of man and animals and Embryology from an
anthroposophical point of view.
After 20 years of teaching at the bio-dynamic agricultural school
Warmonderhof in the Netherlands it seemed a
good idea to put the things I wrote down
these years on the internet, so that more people can read about these
The starting point for phenomenology
is observing. How to observe, how to make your observations richer,
what is important in observing and what are your limitations are
discussed. In phenomenology, the seven ways of observing to
the core of a subject and to come to individual actions are
will find many exercises for observing and phenomenology. In the Twelve
senses, all twelve
discussed, examples given of their activity
and many exercises are given as well.
If you want more exercises, please take a look at het Basic exercises
of Rudolf Steiner, they are nice and simple ones and they can enrichen
A page on the Threefoldness of the human was added, too, and some five
on threefoldness of mammals. In future
some more pages on the threefoldness of mammals will follow, as
they will be
translated from Dutch.
In Embryology, the development of the plant and a simple animal are
given. These illuminate the anthroposophical concepts of them. After
that, the development of man during the first eight weeks is described
and shown in many drawings.
You can download four books/booklets: Observing with Twelve
senses, Phenomenology, Embryology and the Basic exercises. See the page
These English pages form a part of a larger Dutch site. See Dutch under
Introduction in the menu for all the items, or you can click here.
Please send me your remarks and questions by e-mail via the contactpage.
The website was designed by Manja Kindt, an artist who has a website
her own, too.
I hope you enjoy this site.
Tom van Gelder.
March 8, 1953 - November 16, 2011
six basic exercises by Rudolf
Seek the truly practical material life,
but seek it in such a way
that it does not numb you to the spirit that works
Seek the spirit, but not out of spiritual lust or
seek it rather because you wish to become selfless
in the practical life of the material world.
Turn to the ancient principle:
"Spirit never without matter, matter never without
Rudolf Steiner has given six simple exercises to develop and purify
thinking, feeling and willing. They are called basic exercises or
additional exercises ((German: Nebenübungen) because you can
do them in addition to meditation. Even if you do not want to meditate,
these exercises are good to do. You get to know yourself better and
life becomes more interesting.
A cat can be compared with a point, a dog with a circle. The cat is the
point because it lies next to the stove, in the centre. That is how it
behaves: keeping to itself, keeping control. What it does,
comes from within. It is an obstinate, individual animal. In
the point is rest, everything comes to a halt and it is
closed, we have no access.
The dog is the circle, guarding the boundaries. In the
circle is movement and activity. It is open, we have access to
it. The dog learns easily and can be educated and trained. What
the dog does, is a reaction to what comes from outside.
egg ell and sperm
The egg cell (or ovum, or oocyte) is the largest human cell. She
measures 0.15 to 0.2 mm and is just visible to the naked eye. She is
also the roundest cell, she is almost perfectly round (Fig. 4). She
therefore has the largest volume in relation to her surface. The cell
consists of a large amount of cytoplasm (= cell fluid) in
which the nucleus is dissolved (and therefore invisible) until
just before conception.