Of ‘The Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily’ by J. W. Goethe

and Scenes from ‘The Portal of Initiation’ by Rudolf Steiner.


The individual paintings of this series represent soul experiences of the Youth in Goethe’s Fairy Tale. We can compare this figure with Johannes Thomasius in Rudolf Steiner’s ‘Portal of Initiation’. The young man is following a spiritual path to the twelve different stages whose qualities can be identified by studying the texts given in the book IMAGINATION.

  Let us take the last two paintings with their macrocosmic perspectives that reach far beyond Goethe’s descriptions. According to reliable sources, Hermann Linde never expanded this way without having discussed such changes with Rudolf  Steiner and having obtained his agreement or special motivation to do so. 

  Hermann Linde (1836 – !923) suddenly died only a few months after the First Goetheanum was burnt down on New Year’s Day of 1923.


  1. ‘Astral Realm’

humble acceptance; sacrifice (as thought and ‘mood’)                                                              


  1. ‘The Tale of Hatred and Love’

gratitude; deeper interest


  1. ‘The Realm of the Elemental Beings’

 the catharsis leads to devotion and purity


  1. ‘The Subterranean Temple’

reverence, humility, composure

  1. ‘The Devachan’

Inspirational contemplation, unselfishness


  1. ‘Longing for Deliverance’  (Crisis)

intuitive contemplation


  1. ‘Mourning for the Youth’

potion of absent mindedness


  1. ‘The Procession to the Bridge’

the ‘wanderer’


  1. ‘The Procession across the Bridge’

insight into cosmic relationships


10.‘The Silver Temple’

     ‘to build oneself a hut’


11.‘The Golden Temple’

     wisdom, strength, pure cosmic love,                              

     Ego permeated with the Christ


12. ‘The Temple on the Bridge’

      love of sacrifice