Bees – Lectures by Rudolf Steiner - The nuptial flight of the virgin queen
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Bees – Lectures by Rudolf Steiner
November 26th 1923
Fertilization, on the whole, is a very special matter with bees. It is not as though there were a marriage bed somewhere to which they retire during fertilization, but rather the complete opposite takes place. For fertilization they appear in public, in full sunshine. And specifically-this may seem very strange-they go as high as possible.
The queen flies as high as possible toward the Sun, to which she belongs. I have described that for you already. The drone, still able to overcome its own Earth-based powers, despite the fact that it has unified itself with these powers, flies highest of all and can fertilize the queen way up there in the air.
Then the queen comes back again and lays her eggs. You see, bees don't have a nuptial bed; they have instead a nuptial flight. When they want fertilization to take place, they strive as much as possible to fly in the direction of the Sun. It is also the case that they need good weather for their nuptial flight; during bad weather nothing will happen.
December 12th 1923
The strange thing is this. Just observe the fertilization flight. ……….. a flight that the queen undertakes in the direction of the Sun. For fertilization does not take place when the skies are overcast. When the flight occurs, the drones that want to take the earthly element and fuse it with the Sun element have to battle it out in the air.
Those that are weak remain behind. Only those that have a sufficient reserve of power and can fly as high as the queen are capable of bringing about fertilization.
Just because the queen has been fertilized doesn't mean that every egg has been fertilized. Actually, gentlemen, only a portion of the queen's eggs are fertilized. Those are the ones that will become workers or queens. The unfertilized eggs in the queen's body will become drones. When a queen has not been fertilized at all, only drones will come from her eggs.
When the queen is fertilized, drones develop from the unfertilized eggs, or workers and queens from the fertilized ones.