The honeybee has lived in close association with human beings for
millennia. Tragically, however, humanity’s once intimate connection with this
unique creature has been harmed by our increasingly utilitarian and
exploitative dealings with the natural world. We are now in urgent need of
re-establishing a deeper relationship, not just for the sake of the bees
themselves but for the whole of nature—and of course for ourselves.
Lorenzen—a true master beekeeper—provides numerous insights to
enable a more fruitful engagement with the living world. Offering an enrichment
of the knowledge and practice of beekeeping, he discusses the origins of the
honeybee, its relationship to the floral kingdom, the digestion of the bee, the
treatment of bee diseases as well as appropriate beekeeping techniques. He also
develops subtle spiritual concepts such as the idea of the bee colony as an
“individuality” and “group soul,” providing new depth and wisdom to our
understanding of how bees live and work.
This small book, a hidden gem that has never
before appeared in English, is essential reading for anyone who cares about the
future of the honeybee and the future of humanity.
Iwer Thor Lorenzen (1895–1976) was born in Harrislee Flensburg, Germany, and began his career as a teacher in 1914. While serving in World War I, he became acquainted with Anthroposophy (founded by Rudolf Steiner) through a fellow soldier. Following the war, Lorenzen returned to teaching, later moving into special education. He established a school in 1949 near Hamburg, where he remained until his retirement. Having worked as a volunteer in the Zoological State Institute in Hamburg from 1935 onward, Lorenzen was also a biologist revered, especially among biodynamic farmers, for his love and knowledge of beekeeping. He published his key work on beekeeping in 1938, followed by another nine books, as well as numerous articles on the insect and animal worlds, metamorphosis, and evolution.