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Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics

, Volume 7, Issue 2, pp 173–187 | Cite as

Biological dynamic farming — An occult form of alternative agriculture?

  • Holger Kirchmann
Article

Abstract

An analysis of the theory of biodynamic farming is presented. The founder of biological dynamic agriculture, the Austrian Rudolf Steiner, Ph.D., (1861–1925), introduced methods of preparation and use of eight compounds forming the nucleus of his agricultural theory. His instructions were based on insights and inner visions from spiritualistic exercises and not on agricultural experiments. His purpose was to show mankind a form of agriculture that enables not only the production of healthy foods but also the achievement of harmonious interactions in agriculture and a spiritual development of mankind through “cosmic forces” captured in the foods. However, many of his statements are not provable simply because scientifically clear hypotheses cannot be made as his descriptions were unclear and not stringent. Those predictions that can be tested scientifically have been found to be incorrect. It was concluded that Steiner's instructions are occult and dogmatic and cannot contribute to the development of alternative or sustainable agriculture.

Keywords

biodynamic compounds alternative agriculture food test spiritualistic purpose 

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Copyright information

© Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Holger Kirchmann
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Soil SciencesSwedish University of Agricultural SciencesUppsalaSweden

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