"It is only the whole earth that, as an economic body, can truly be compared with a living organism ... As economists, what we really need is an understanding of the social organism in its totality."

Rudolf Steiner, Rethinking Economics, pp. 13-14, 1922.

"First of all, get a broom and out with everything that negates the spirit in economic life! On that depends the future welfare of (humanity)."

Rudolf Steiner, Spiritual Science as a Foundation for Social Reform, 1920

                                                              THE FUNDAMENTAL SOCIAL LAW

In a community of human beings working together, the well-being of the community will be the greater, the less individuals claim for themselves the proceeds of the work they themselves have done, i.e. the more of these proceeds they give over to their fellow-workers, and the more their own requirements are satisfied, not by the results of their own work, but by work done by others. 

 (The above citations are taken from Steinerian Economics, A Compendium, compiled and annotated by

Gary Lamb and Sarah Hearn, Published by Adonis Press, Hillsdale, New York, 2014.)

In regard to the Fundamental Social Law, Rudolf Steiner mentions in several places in his work that this fundamental social law is an ancient theme of every esotericist and an ancient tenet of Spiritual Science.  The following are two examples of historically documented but little known statements in support of this idea:

Cicero, Roman philosopher and statesman, writes:

"Not for us alone are we born; our country, our friends, have a share in us. The sentence, as Cicero himself says, is a literal translation of a sentiment from Plato's Letter to Archytas. In the context of the passage, the sentence means that "humans have been created for the sake of others of their kind, indeed, to benefit each other as much as possible."  Cicero associates this concept with the Stoic ideal of cosmopolitanism, according to which all men have a natural kinship with all other men and need to "contribute to the general good by an interchange of acts of kindness by giving and receiving."

 

Richard Overton, leader of the Levellers, a17th C. movement for democracy and equality during the English Civil War, writes:

"I was not born for myself alone, but for my neighbor as well as myself."