Bees – Lectures by Rudolf Steiner - The soul connection between bees and good beekeepers
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Bees – Lectures by Rudolf Steiner
December 1st 1923
Question submitted in writing: Among the beekeepers in traditional farming communities, there is a conviction that between the beekeeper and the bees, there is a certain soul connection, a spiritual bond that exists between them. So they say that if the beekeeper dies, the death must immediately be made known to the bees. If this is not done, all of the bees will die during the course of the next year. That a certain spiritual rapport exists between them is made clear by the experience that many have had. If you try to attend to your bees when you are in an angry mood, the bees will sting you more frequently than if you carry out your tasks with the bees when you are in a calm mood and in harmony with your environment. Is there any basis in reality for this somewhat ancient notion that older beekeepers have?
Dr Steiner: It would be interesting to hear from Mr. Muller, if he could simply say that such things are a total figment of the imagination. Such things as announcing the death of the beekeeper are customary among beekeepers in the country.
But I'm more interested in this spiritual rapport, this relationship between the beekeeper and the bees. Perhaps Mr. Muller could say something about this.
Mr. Muller: (Mr Muller talks about two illustrative cases in Basel and Zurich.) In one family the wife who had helped very much in tending the bees died, and in the course of one year all of the hives died out. In another case, this one in Basel, it was also a wife who was very much devoted to tending the bees who died. The same thing happened. It was a large apiary. In the course of a year, twenty-eight hives were reduced to only six. I can't explain how that is connected to the time span and why it happened to those bees. In one case it was established that the bees did not die of any known disease; perhaps there was a soul connection.