The Lectures compiled in this volume were given by Rudolf Steiner in different European cities throughout the years 1912 and 1913. they deal with the experiences of the human soul after death and describe in detail how the living can relate themselves to the dead. Reading them, it becomes abundantly clear that excarnated souls need the spiritual support of those presently incarnated, and that those still on earth derive in turn enlightenment and support from their former earthly companions.
Today, with our mental capacities geared to dealing only with the sense perceptible world, any relationship to the dead becomes a difficult concept to grasp. Here in these lectures, however, the problem is presented like a theme with many variations. They continually bring back the same basic content and by allowing us to view it from every different angle our understanding is awakened and direct spiritual intercourse with the dead gradually established.
Thus, in spite of what may appear on the surface to be mere repetition, the publication of this volume in its virtual entirety as it appeared in the German edition, is justified. Four lectures that were previously published in English translation are not included. They are Links Between the Living and the Dead, two lectures, Rudolf Steiner Press, 1960 and Occult Research into Life Between Death and a New Birth, two lectures, Anthroposophic Press, 1949.