"Thus my life flowed in two streams; I followed one as a lonely wanderer, the other in the lively companionship of people whom I had learned to love."
- excerpt from Rudolf Steiner's autobiography, Mien Lebensgang, in Hemleben's Rudolf Steiner, An Illustrated Biography
In Hemleben's book, chapter one on Rudolf Steiner's childhood and youth, we see that there were several people who had influenced the young Steiner before the age of twenty. Beginning in Neudorfl, Hungary, as an eight year old attending the village school, to Weiner-Neustadt as an eleven year old at Realschule, to his time in Vienna at the Technical University of Vienna.
In Neudorfl, there were the assistant schoolmaster who sparked Steiner's interest in geometry and the arts, and the priest who introduced the Copernican system. At Realschule, there was Georg Kosak, his teacher in math. In Vienna as a young man, he met Felix Koguzki, an herb gatherer whose mental life "bore the marks of elemental creative freedom." Karl Julius Schroer, his German teacher, was passionate about Goethe. Steiner was also influenced by the opposing force of Marie Eugenie della Grazie and Laurenz Mullner, who had formed active intellectual circles in Vienna. Wilhelm Neuman, a priest of the Cisterian Order, whose discussions with Steiner about reincarnation and the catholic church led to the precepts of anthroposophy. Rosa Mayreder, a painter, authoress, and poetess, and friend, helped Steiner formulate the Philosophy of Freedom. Finally, Otto Specht, a boy whom Steiner privately tutored, had allowed him to formulate the basis for therapeutic education.
Steiner's quote may demonstrate the inner struggles that Steiner had with his own intellectual endeavors as both bringing him close to those that support his work and isolating him simultaneously.