Following on from Goethe’s scientific work and Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual scientific work, recent decades have seen a steady development and testing of phenomenological methods. We are nevertheless continuing our efforts to redevelop our research methods and adapt them to the object of research, i.e. to discover the method of approach that is appropriate in each case.
This seeming contradiction of developing a method for an object before we have studied it is characteristic of our way of working. Science, as a process, requires a constant movement back and forth, a kind of "breathing", between scientific investigation and re-examining its methods. The concept is brought to the phenomenon as a kind of "courting" (Werbung, an expression coined in this context by Hermann Poppelbaum), and the open question is: will the phenomenon accept it? Thus the scientist is taught by the "object".
This approach can introduce several ways of looking at the matter. In the sense of "cognitive holism" (McClamrock 1989, Caruana 2000, Leiber 2008), our experiential approaches integrate analysis, idea- or phenomena-orientated phenomenology and practical meditation "into the whole". This kind of research is not confined to reading the literature, but depends on observation and experiment. Our method is immanent in that the full significance of our results is understood only through their concrete relationship to the human being. "Wholeness" arises in the human being, and yet also belongs to the object of study.