Rudolf Steiner was born on the 27th of February 1861 in Kraljevec (Kingdom of Hungary). He studied at the College of Technology in Vienna and obtained his doctorate at the University of Rostock with a dissertation on Theory of Knowledge which concluded with the sentence: «The most important problem of human thinking is this: to conceive the human being as a free personality founded on himself». Thereafter he worked as an editor of Goethe's writings on natural science in Weimar, and as private teacher, editor and lecturer in Berlin.
He had an intensive exchange with the personalities involved in the cultural life and arts of his time. However, unlike them, he experienced another side of reality, the spiritual realm, which was accesible for him through the exploration of consciousness, in the same way, as the visible world is accesible for the natural scientist through the instruments of external research. This enlarged perspective enabled him to give significant impulses in multiple areas such as art, pedagogy, curative education, medicine, agriculture, architecture, economy and social sciences, aiming towards a spiritual renewal of civilization.
He gave to his movement the name «Anthroposophy» (Wisdom of Man). After separating from the german section of the Theosophical Society, where he acted as general secretary, he founded the Anthroposophical Society. Since the construction of the Goetheanum in Dornach, Switzerland, the Anthroposophical Society has its own seat. Rudolf Steiner died on 30th March 1925 in Dornach.
His work comprises, besides his numerous writings, transcripts of approximately 6000 lectures, which are mostly edited in the Complete Works.