As He is the most perfect embodiment of the highest virtues, He deserves to have imitators. Moreover these virtues go beyond human excellencies and are included under the symbols of the cross;and those, who have devoted themselves closer to man, have called these Christian proverty, by which we renounce even the things that are permitted the world,that we may possess only Christ. Those who join this group unlearn,leave,and bear everything. They prefer simplicity to intelligence,ignorance to knowledge,silence to eloquence,humility to dignity,credulity to shrewdness, want to abundance, studying to teaching, bearing to doing;and whatsoever things are considered lowly on earth, provided they are harmless, these they desire.
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Anyone can encourage works, rules, precepts, give and imprint dictates. But to identify the essentials, to support the efforts, to generate diligence and to teach the proper use of resources, and eventually relate everything to Christ, that is lacking. This is the Christian work that cannot be paid for with treasures from the earth. It is one of the many pedagogical directions given by Johann Valentin Andreae to provide the young people of his time with a better perspective for the future.
It is widely known that Andreae Herrenberg - Stuttgart owes his fame to his authorship of the Call Fama and the Confession of the Rosicrucians as well as the Alchemical Wedding. However, the fact that this exceptionally gifted German theologian, poet, playwright and minister was also a pioneering educational and social reformer has long been overshadowed by the debate on his role in the Rosicrucian manifestos. He was often too modest to present his ideas to the public.
He preferred to leave the broad dissemination of his pedagogical ideas to his younger kindred spirit Comenius, with whom he had written contact. He lived for decades with the vision of gathering a Brotherhood of wise friends from all over Germany, who would exchange thoughts and ideas in order to bring the well-being of all humanity to a higher, spiritual level.
It is the driving force behind his actions and publications. To his disappointment, he had to conclude at the end of his life that this idea never found fertile soil. Education from the seventh year on Andreae was a dreaded social critic who, with his sharp pen, advocates, among other things, that children should be educated from the age of seven. He designed a visual method for teaching mathematics, being more than half a century ahead of Comenius with this.
He studied the works of the cartographers Gerard Mercator and Ortelius, of the historian Van Meteren and of the jurist of world fame, Hugo de Groot. He translated works by the latter, as well as by the Leiden philosopher Justus Lipsius. Van der Linde lent him books that were difficult to obtain in Germany.
Andreae was so enthusiastic about developments in the Netherlands that, on the recommendation of the Margrave of Anspach, he decided to settle there. His appointment as a preacher in Vaihingen, Germany, however, prevented this from happening.
It was always in the perspective of what came first for him: the inner kingdom, God in man, or in the words of the Fama: the Golden Age. In his ideal, utopian Christian state, referred to in the book of the same name as Christianopolis , all offices can also be filled by women. In such a Christian society, according to Andreae, man will ultimately succeed in leaving all the earthly behind. Only then can he consult himself in order to truly understand the reality of the Good, the True and the Beautiful.
Those who seek this outside themselves will be disappointed, for it is their being-in-the-world that stands in the way of pure perception.
He who leaves nature behind him and surrenders to the spirit that has become free of it, will be secured in the one, true and good God. He will see and experience with indescribable joy how the whole world is founded in its centre, not under a cloudy or coloured sky but in crystalline clarity.
And so, in the supreme delight of his senses, he will discover the first lines of art, the first starting point of things. And that starting point for Andreae is love, an all-embracing love for creation, for man as the miracle of creation and for the inner Christ.
But then he also had enough of the university environment. He only saw small-minded people who tried to beat each other with fussy trifles. The latter also believe that they are proclaiming the right faith, but meanwhile they do not realize that they are completely neglecting the simple rule of life of charity. He looked for his friends outside the university circle and got to know Tobias Hess in Hess was an extremely erudite person: a genuine Bible expert, alchemist, and physician in the line of Paracelsus.
Von Wense brought Andreae into contact with Christoph Besold, an outstanding writer and lawyer. With Andreae, Besold often rages against moral decay, the gradual loss of territory of pure inner religion, and against lies in science and government.
But the danger of a too materialistic development of science was also recognised. They were inspired by the then popular Four Books of True Christianity 80 editions! It was in this atmosphere that the manifestos of the Rosicrucians were created.
The Fama Fraternitatis and the Confessio Fraternitatis are said to have been written by Andreae in and In his autobiography Vita ab Ipso Conscripta he wrote that he even produced the Alchemical Wedding in — so at an improbably young age.
As early as the eleventh century, it attracted attention because the Hirsau Monastery, located in Calw, was the centre of an influential, ground-breaking reform of the monastic system, aimed at the practical completion of the monastic ideal.
He established a charitable foundation with excellent donations, which remained active until Thanks to this initiative, Calw has always been able to recover relatively quickly from the many acts of war to which it has fallen prey. There is an Andreae-house in Calw that is owned by the Evangelical Church.
One of the panels depicts the Universal Teachings with Cabalistic signs and Rosicrucian symbols. Andreae — himself depicted as well — was closely involved in the creation of this panel and would have strongly encouraged the princess to continue with this work of art. Two daughters married dignitaries from the city and these connections would start to bear fruit.
And then there is that special Wimberg! There he prayed to God to save the city from further disaster. On the same Wimberg there is now a conference centre of the modern Rosicrucians of the Lectorium Rosicrucianum. Shining Path Johann Valentin Andreae must have often felt lonely during his pioneering life due to incomprehension. His heart and head often travelled far ahead of him.
The Shining Path, which Andreae created while often been scorned for it, is still of great salvation to many people on a daily basis. Mit Freuden will ich singen Mit Freuden will ich singen in dieser Morgenstund, mein Herz soll auf sich schwingen in Gottes Liebesgrund.
I would like to express my sincere thanks to the employees of the City Library in Herrenberg in the cultural centre of the Hofscheuer.
Johannes Valentinus Andreae
The young Andreae studied theology and natural sciences — After that, he taught young nobles and hiked with his students through Switzerland, France, Austria and Italy. He visited Dillingen, a bastion of the Jesuits , whom he regarded as the Antichrist. He came to know Tobias Hess , a Paracelsian physician with an interest in apocalyptic prophecy. From till Andreae traveled. After the final examination in , he became deacon in Vaihingen an der Enz , and in priest in Calw.
Johann Valentin Andreae