09.28.08

Bennett’s The Dramatic Universe

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:43 am

The posts on Samkhya are also an indirect commentary on the writings of J.G. Bennett, and I have been looking over his The Dramatic Universe again, a book I read many years ago at the same time Star Wars appeared, and the effect of the book was a similar transient enthusiasm. On the one hand a critical examination of the claims of Gurdjieffianity are important, on the other a blanket rejection of the traditions cited in this ‘religion’ is not responsible history, just because one is critical of Gurdjieff.

Bennett’s work, as noted, reflects the legacy of Samkhya and his rendition is open to a lot of questions. But there aren’t many exemplars of that ancient genre, which could, potentially, become a lingua franca of religious questions (always a failed hope), and the attempt of ‘the next lunatic who wants to try’ has a morbid interest. Bennett was a man of very high intelligence in many areas, and the audacity of his project requires a kind of chase plane approach just to keep up with him. This man figured in the twenties or thirties the Kaluza-Klein wing of Einstein’s general theory of relativity, and wanted to adapt it to his, or Ouspensky’s, system. A foolish idea, or brilliant, it makes one sit up and take notice.

But his systematics isn’t rigorous enough for this kind of grafting. Things pop out of the woodwork with a kind of facile logic that can leave you paralyzed at what seem to be valid, often cogent, insights, but which conceal the outrageous premises of the whole operation. To do this at all requires an endrun around a basic Kantian challenge to metaphysics, and, wouldn’t ya know, the first pages of the first volume show Bennett, either with a guilty conscience or else at the stage of crossing the threshold of delusion, claiming he is going to replace  Kant’s categories with his own. That’s a foolish beginning for such a smart endeavor, and I fear that if you are wondering about the details of the result, you may not succeed, because they are a labyrinth that began with shaky starting assumptions.”We aren’t going to be stopped by Kant”  seems to be the shadow motive here.

So you can pull the plug there if you want. The other alternative is to be strapped to the mast like Odysseus as you go past the land of the lotus eaters, and keep a list in your mind of the assumptions being bought on cheap credit as this remarkcagle systematics starts to fill with hot air.

The basic assumption, which long predates Bennett, is that there is a basic cosmic triad of three impulses, a view that is as persistent as it is undemonstrable, or even explicable. Unless that question can be gotten straight the whole Samkhya enterprise remains a mysterious puzzle. Theological renditions are completely worthless, and litter the landscape of Hinduism and Christianity. Bennett’s attempt to rationalize that legacy of hopeless confusion is not without value, but he changes gears and accepts stray dogs in the middle of his serious section, because he is too humbly prone to look the other way when the distortions of Samkhya in other religions are under examination. We have to suspect that the doctrine of the Trinity is a garbled version of a Samkhya idea, and, boy, what a garble.

Perhaps the whole mess of pottage is beyond rescue. Modernity made a good attempt to escape from the past here, but, with Hegel and his dialectic, the whole question resurfaced like the White Whale in the middle of that modernity, and has been in the Marxist version the source of some considerable chaos. So the subject won’t stay buried. The reason for my continuing interest.

One reason the issue is important is that any use of the Samkhya, so clear on the surface in many ways, requires a strategy to deal with its basic framework which is that of the ‘gunas’ or basic triads, whose character between everything from the non-dual of Vedanta to Gurdjieff’s law of three to the dialectic of Hegel/Marx. Getting that straight is perhaps impossible, and one has to ask, where did the original Samkhya come from. Gurdjieff, in fact, noted that the human mind can’t handle this kind of logic. Period. So what to do with it, if you can’t handle it?  Bennett does a series of compromises and lays down what might be a flatland version that is at least consistent  with itself, leaving a mysterious result hard to evaluate, the more so as it does produce suggestive solutions to some of the obscure puzzles of self, will, and mechanism. But always the result is not something you can finaly bank on.

A further problem is the way Bennett got hijacked by some kind of Christian path of his own (it is visible in his autobiography) and his effort to adapt Samkhya to his Christian theology, at the seams, in many ways discredits the whole work. We discussed the issue of ‘pandit-knapping’, or the kidnapping of potential propandists of high intelligence, at Darwinian blog, and maybe we should repost some of that here.  I think Christians should stop this pilfering from the Samkhya cookie jar. Its legacy was not theistic.

There is a lot to consider here, maybe a series like the /gmancon series on Bennett’s DU might be in order, but the labor required is considerable, and the logistics impossible (I don’t even own copies of the books, obtained from a distant library to get the original first edition version of Vol I, and always due for return before I get any work done), so we shall see.

09.26.08

Cross discussion of Samkhya

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:46 pm

Discussion of the Samkhya post at Darwiniana

Update on the Samkhya/’will’ post

Posted in Uncategorized at 3:46 pm

Just a note, I updated the post, The ‘Will’ and the ‘will’

Update In discussing this I often have J.G.Bennett’s terminology in the back of my mind, and here mislabeled the level of twelve gunas Individuality and True Self. The Individuality corresponds to level twelve, and the True Self to level twenty-four, the level forty-eight being what he calls the Divided Self. The question is significant because the True Self is within the reach of self-development and can become in Bennett’s terminology the vehicle of the higher level.
I have a notion to rewrite this whole scheme in another terminology. The grafting of Samhya, Schopenhauer, with no mention of the latter, and various other things makes his rendition highly difficult to grasp.

Your ace in the hole: Samkhya

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:09 pm

Anyone who feels beholden to, mesmerized, or dominated by the Gurdjieff legacy should consider a good exit strategy in its poorly disguised bootleg teachings, ‘fenced’ as I put in a previous post.
The classic example is the ‘classical Samkhya’ that is the grinning Cheshire Cat in the background behind the ‘ray of creation’ and the schemes of ‘cosmic laws’. Which I referred to yesterday in a previous post.
How/where/when this enters Gurdjieff’s thinking is not clear, but all his indirections can’t conceal the obvious resemblance to an Indian tradition (whose own source, however, is equally obscure, beyond the clear signature of someone called ‘Kapila’ in six century BC India).
This is a suspected ripoff that has been unscrewed from its atheist sockets and turned into a theistic myth.
So you simply flip the bird at the thief Gurdjieff and his propaganda and go your own way with the original (unfortunately a very difficult thing to do).
These people did this repeatedly: look at Bennett’s work in the Dramatic Universe. The work of Schopenhauer on the ‘will’ has been crystallized into something that confusingly metaphysical where the original was a disciplined critique. The pasted on Christian theology is especially outrageous.

This is just a reminder that these people are fast talkers, and you owe them nothing as spiritual authorities.

Meanwhile I hope I was able with a woefully inadequate quick sketch to give some flavor of Samkhya in my discussion of the levels of the gunas, an ancient atheistic materialistic/naturalistic teaching that has been ripped off so many times it sets your teeth on edge.

A further point here is that, as with this example, it could be possible to make this stuff ‘open information’ accessible to anyone who needs it, done honestly without organizations and authority figures of the exploitative type. Most of the fourth way material should have been given this treatment so the world could have learned and moved on. The artificial carrot dangling of tidbits that are designed to be too limited to have any effect has gone on too long.

The original Samkhya was no doubt intended to serve that purpose, but it is not intuitive anymore, if it ever was. The point is to get past all these middlemen.

The Old Age Movement, …and the New???

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:50 am

MBFM on fourth way groups.
You raise a critical question, and it is remarkable how spastic these fourth way groups are. There are several things here, the neurotic psychology of pseudo-teachers, and the broader effect of the Gurdjieff corpus itself which actually, you may note, makes a statement about arrested development in human evolution. It is hard to read between the lines here, but this unsubstantiated myth of Gurdjieff’s is an excuse for doing the same thing to his own students/groups.

This factor is notable in a figure like E.J. Gold who creates an endless revolving door with the result that everyone ends up in the discard pile. It is so blatant it is almost sickening. Wikipedia has actually produced a list of the separate teachings he has invented since the seventies, in every case a piece of total pastiche used to spin the wheel with a new set of ‘disciples’. All these teachings are complete junk, and each one has a new set of students, isolated from the previous set, lest they catch on.

There is a phrase here, ‘increase your need’, which seems to mean that what you get depends on whether you need something (in whose estimation I would like to know). The point is that there is an ambition to play teacher because it ‘increases your need’, i.e. catapults you to some putative higher level on the backs of a passive group. It is a bogus protocol, but there is no doubt that the question of teachers has been corrupted beyond repair by this insidious tactic of exploitation.

In general, as I have pointed out already there is a definite conservative/reactionary bias to Gurdjieff’s legacy, and in that context, freedom, let alone some esoteric teaching, was never intended to be granted to followers. They are just led along with a string in their nose. Good to see that you have an ace up your sleeve here: this antiquated authoritarianism is nothing spiritual and is the doomed tactics of those stuck in the past.
That’s your ticket past these figures who seem to lure you on with the promise of some esoteric wisdom to come. They are really false imitators of traditions they don’t even understand.
History has moved on and the ‘Old Age Movement’ spuriously called ‘New Age’ shows in almost every case a remarkable misunderstanding of history.

Arrested development in fourth way groups

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:50 am

From The ‘will’ and the ‘Will’, 2008/09/26 at 9:27 AM

mybrainisafleamarket:

What nemo wrote:

“Gurdjieff pointed to something that mathematically ought to exist, but didn’t produce any method or clarification, in part because *he didn’t really want that freedom in those he wished to control*.”

‘He didnt really want that freedom in those he wished to control.’

Nemo, thank you. You articulated something that Ive been hazily aware of, but never clearly enough to code it into language as precisely as you did.

Ive read case histories on a variety of G/Fourth Way groups, whether authentic, or faux.

Time and again, I noticed how people would be suddenly and abruptly kicked out of the groups.

After awhile, I had a strange feeling they were being ejected for having actually grown enough in response to the bits of nutrient in the teachings to reach a point of being just on the point of waking up and no longer needing the teacher.

And the teacher, after having told them, ‘Grow up’ would punish them for having *grown up* by kicking them out, just before they’d have consciously discovered they had grown up..and no longer needed the teacher.

So…the students were in a hellish catch 22–they’d be punished for doing the very thing the teacher told them to do, but kicked up before they could get a conscious sense of mastery and autonomy and leave under their own power.

Ive speculated that teachers sould do this kind of strategic rejection by noticing when a student would show subtle, non verbal signs indicating boredom, or even skepticism–concealed yawns, eyes less bright, lessened eagerness to smile and perk at up the witticisms of the teacher, slight slumping of the body, brief, flickers of narrowed eyes indicating an unconscious and growing skepticism.

A student might not recognize he or she is outgrowing the teacher, but the teacher would know, and would then target that student for expulsion….often by flattering the student, re-ignite the student’s loyalty,
and then suddenly and viciously ejecting the student with no explanation.

Its like being kicked in the head while asleep.

A teacher who says, ‘Be free, but who actually doesnt welcome your becoming free and who will viciously punish and traumatize you for actually showing signs of becoming free…that can be the most damaging one of all.

I think this dynamic may be part of the Fourth Way scene, especially when it goes really, bad. It can show up in other venues, too.

09.25.08

Indian skeptics

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:54 pm

Here’s a post at Darwiniana that might be of interest: Indian sceptics

Myers going global, Free Thought In India, with an Indian ‘Freethought’ site, http://nirmukta.com/, the sutbtitle ‘Breaking The Spell’ gives it away, Dennett & Ananda Meera. There is a lot of commentary here on that subject, check the search function. The question of Indian religion is complex, but the attack on the whole of the Indian tradition in the context of attacking right-wing Hinduism, is, as usual, the wrong approach. A figure such as Ananda Meera should have known better.

I should say that the Indian site might well be of interest here on this blog, as its intent resembles ours. But my viewpoint is very different from that represented by people such as Myers who will be totally unhelpful to anyone trying to sort out his New Age confusions. Such scientists want to lock us in a box of total ignorance. And that is precisely why we are vulnerable to the Gurdjieff types.

The ‘will’ and the ‘Will’

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:43 pm

Updated, below.
comment/input from MBFM

Very interesting commentary on Gurdjieff’s ‘path of the will’. However, I am wary of endorsing this perspective, even as I recommend giving it consideration.

The author makes an important point: the ‘path of will’ is completely frustrating, sometimes you give up and something clicks.
Rajneesh often made this point, in various forms, and, indeed, specifically with respect to Gurdjieff.
I have been critical of Gurdjieff, but I can’t automatically reject the recognizably ‘fenced’ spiritual teachings that he absconded with from somewhere/somewho else. He, and Bennett, dropped open hints repeatedly along the way of the ‘different ways’, no doubt in the process making a pastiche of them, e.g. the silly partition of ways, fakir, monk, and yogi, and a fourth. This division is an artificial construct. But there is an obvious meaning here, and in fact there is a lot in Gurdjieff that is obviously borrowed, e.g. from Buddhism, or from any meditative tradition that expounds on the psychology of the meditator. For example the whole discourse on many ‘i’s’ before some phantom called the real ‘I’ is pretty ancient stuff, rewritten with a kind of flair that makes it seem original. It’s like the ‘sufi’ tale of the horse, the driver, the passenger, etc.. Gurdjieff? Sufi? It’s last reported siting goes back to the Jains in the time of Mahavir, thence we can be sure further back.
It’s a truth rediscovered by anyone who tries to quite smoking, so…
The problem I have here is that abandoning the ‘will’ for the cooled out sensation of meditative release might make you feel good, but it won’t help you quit smoking. (a very artificial example, perhaps. Now they have chemicals that can help, think of a better example)
The formulation thus of issues of the will won’t go away. That doesn’t mean we have to buy into obsessive and deluded notions of our ‘will’. So what are we talking about?
Kant is good here: your ‘will’ is present already at the moment of ethical action, by definition of the terms. This issue in Kant is one of the most vexed, philosophically. Yet his point is clear: at the crunch, man has the higher embedded in the lower, his will. Otherwise he could not function in human society.
Then there is Schopenhauer on the will.
Wait for the moment when these difficult philosophers appeal to you at a moment of interest, and consider them.
Both these philosophers demonstrated the immense complexity of the question of will, and the difference between phenomenal and noumenal aspects of this question, with different perspectives in the same framework of transcendental idealism toward the reality of free will.
Of great importance is to grasp their distinction of noumenon and phenomenon, or, in Schopenhauer, representation and thing in itself.
As you pursue a spiritual path you begin to speculate about ‘self’, but your experience reflects the phenomenon of self. You never experience the noumenal aspect of self. This is the whole point of the Upanishads, which, however, are not so clear as Schopenhauer. Some may not agree. Schopenhauer offered some hope, contra Kant, for detecting, so to speak, the ‘will’ behind the representation. Best to consider his depiction, not mine.

Update: The Indic stream shows a classic antinomy in action, almost Kantian in its strangeness: The upanishads have ‘atman’ as a referrent, while Buddhism negates this, anatta, or ‘no atman’. There is no real contradiction. But Buddhism can confuse beginners here, and I often wonder if the classic elegance of Buddhism wasn’t counterproductive. Perhaps there is a sense of passing beyond the ‘true self’ to something beyond that, level six.

The problem we have here is exactly the problem we have outlined with the two paths, that beyond time, that through time.
Enlightened beings have, perhaps, moved beyond ‘will’ (a dangerous statement, since the meaning of the term ‘will’ can change its meaning). At any rate they don’t linger for the attempt to realize a ‘real will’, although their enlightenment essentially does that in any case.
Gurdjieff pointed to something that mathematically ought to exist, but didn’t produce any method or clarification, in part because he didn’t really want that freedom in those he wished to control.

Another line of understanding might be Samkhya, to wrest the question from the Gurdjieff distortion of that ancient subject.
It is not trustworthy stuff at this point, the key having been lost. But it makes a rough sense, as metaphysics, with little scientific basis:
You have the different realms,

96 gunas close match raw physicality
48 gunas close match to ordinary consciousness, hypnotized
24 gunas close match to what is supposed to normal self-consciousnees
12 gunas the ‘real’ self…. the ‘will’, the individuality???
6 gunas Man rarely if ever reaches this level, a mathematical abstraction
3 gunas same here
beyond the 3 gunas lies… well, millennia of confusion talks gibberish about something they call ‘god’. As Jesus notes, ‘no man has seen god at any time’.
Thus the two top rungs (assuming any of this Samkhya has any validation!) are never reached by man.

Note and Update: The classic Samkhya was a non-theistic philosophy and any use of the ‘term’ god will provoke confusion in this schematic (which is pretty shaky as it is). The apex of this triangle should be taken for what it is, an apex of a triangle, and says nothing, in the same way that the t=0 point in the big bang says nothing. These subjects are also confused by the conceptions of involution vs evolution which have fallen into a pit of nonsense. We have no direct evidence of involution.

Update In discussing this I often have J.G.Bennett’s terminology in the back of my mind, and here mislabeled the level of twelve gunas Individuality and True Self. The Individuality corresponds to level twelve, and the True Self to level twenty-four, the level forty-eight being what he calls the Divided Self. The question is significant because the True is within the reach of self-development and can become in Bennett’s terminology the vehicle of the higher level.
I have a notion to rewrite this whole scheme in another terminology. The grafting of Samhya, Schopenhauer, and various other things makes his rendition highly difficult to grasp.

Man lives his life somewhere between the 96 and the 24. The deeper part, however, is already forever there, if he can find it.
The problem then is real, to find the true self, the ‘individuality’. Not so simple.

The thing that makes it insuperable, almost, is the way the ‘outer mind theatre’ must be the theatre for all of these levels. You never jump to a higher level. You may experience the manifestation of higher levels in your ordinary theatre of mind, and that is mixed at once ordinary mind.
A frightening situation to be in. That’s why Buddhists say, orient toward ‘enlightenment’ (what level is that?) and bail out, without delay. You have no chance to sort out this different levels with the means you have. But you can, whatever it means, snap out of the whole labyrinth.
Whatever the case, we see that it is at least meaningful to consider the ‘will’ in man as part of his deep unconscious, an aspect of his nature, and something far different from the chaotic psychological state he lives in normally, where something like ‘will power’ becomes the forlorn hope of projects of egoic intention, with whatever results.

You never hear of this in the Indic stream, because they renounce the samsaric and don’t bother with it. Gudjieff caught some hints, which he naturally tried to trace, even back to the Sumerians, of a more comprehensive way beside the Indic, the last remaining real source of last resort, and it makes theoretical sense, sad then that we hear of it from such a con man who sullied the whole idea.
Man’s frame in nature is thus complex. Not even the Buddhist path can fully depict it. Perhaps it remains a project of man’s future.

‘Pondering Gurdjieff’

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:19 am

From Surviving the gang war, 2008/09/25 at 7:41 AM
mybrainisafleamarket:

Hey nemo, here’s something for the site:

http://www.atman.net/realization/ Bruce Morgan’s website

Note from author

“The author retains full copyright.

Anyone wishing to comment or reprint… please contact the author at:

editor@juno.com

From ‘Words of Wisdom’ Chapter Two

‘Pondering Gurdjieff’

Gurdjieff seems to have mindfucked multitudes with the notion that there are some that can “do” and some that can’t.

Nobody can and nobody could, including old George the Georgian — consider for a moment the possibility that he was having his readers and listeners on, and that the dynamic that nurtures awareness (and therefore the only significant transformation in human consciousness) is the spontaneous absence of intent — everything else comprises attempts to communicate, at very best to “point,” not “work.”

The work-for-reward paradigm will get you stuff, it will certainly help you survive — but get you transformed, enlightened, realized? Well, let’s just say some serious pondering is in order, folks, because the real work gets done in solitude and silence, and not as the result of human ambition and toil — we are never, ever, the actual doer.

That, I hypothesize (because it sounds ever so much more serious than “guess”), is the great, even downright cosmic jape of one G. I. Gurdjieff, perhaps the archetypical and ultimate sly man.

The great cul de sac of the human psyche and spirit is the wholesale export of the work-for-reward paradigm from thought-driven activity into the great enquiry into fundamental truth.

It is my thesis (unprovable, of course) that G.I. Gurdjieff understood this quite well, and spent his life patiently waiting for somebody — anybody — to notice that the whole edifice of intentional work only “succeeds” if it finally notices the brick wall in front of it and spontaneously ceases, leaving only the aforementioned silence and solitude, which is (or at least can be — nothing whatsoever is vouchsafed!) an opening into transformation.

(assembled from 2 posts to Google newsgroup – alt.consciousness.4th-way)

09.22.08

Danny, here’s your path…

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:14 pm

The passing of Buddhism

Weinberg on Buddhism, from Darwiniana

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:24 pm

Post at Darwiniana on Buddhism, a slightly different perspective from what we are doing here, but usefully complementary. It is hard to critique gurus because they are won’t yield up to the standard scientific cliches on religion.

Gurdjieffianity and right-wing political tactics

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:34 am

It is worth studying what has happened in the last generation in the American political sphere, where the onset of neo-liberalism was fueled with a set of tactics to coopt ordinary, working voters. There is no other way for an elite to dominate majorities from a minority stance. The dynamics of this political finesse are worth careful study.

From there you can begin to study the analogous, if quite different, tactics behind the ‘game owners’ of sufistic/Gurdjieff (and other, viz. certain Buddhist) legacies. How to create allegiance to elites from those who stand to gain nothing from such movements? The work is like that, and, indeed, the overtones of the term ‘work’ itself are ironically a play on the idea of those who are the workers and those who are the bosses.
Study Ouspensky’s book (and Gurdjeff’s) and try to find the way in which the ‘sale’ is made with clever come ons and insistence on traditionalist obedience. And the whole nine yards. As years go by and the revolving door spins around the functioning of this swindle slowly become clear.

You would do well to consider if you are really ‘in’ this game, or just an Ouspensky bibliomane/idiot with zero prospects in a rigged game that has no intention of helping you out, quite the contrary. This game is especially vicious, with its hidden fascist anti-modernism. The game has given itself away, but such is the momentum of propaganda and the magnitude of the background tradition of spiritual authority wrested from thin air noone seems to put two and two together. And it takes a considerable experience and occult savvy to come upon the completely concealed conspiracies of reaction being played out even as we speak.

It would take five minutes to produce a thriving democratic spirituality for a new age of freedom, but there is noone with the nerve to take on the ancient establishments whose self-perpetuation is accomplished anywhere but in public movements.

Surviving the gang war

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:49 am

…who is nemo?
You have certainly misread me. I am not a mere Ouspensky browser and my relationship to ‘all that’ might surprise you.
I have penetrated the ‘work’ to a degree that is unusual, but the result, as I would like to proclaim, was a rejection of that world, and the need to move in a new way on such issues. This perspective is of more importance for those frozen in Gurdjeffianity than it is for me. I think that the net total of this pseudo-tradition is holding people back, as they sandbank on all the useless issues left unresolved of the Gurdjieff enigma. The Indian tradition produces in every generation realized yogis, while, after a century, followers of Gurdjieff chase their tales going in circles trying pathetically to sort out whether they are sufis, something else, or what have you. It is embarrassing finally.
And I protest the contempt with which innocent seekers are dealt with in the Gurdjieff traditions. Vultures of no spiritual attainments, but with occult connections see nothing awry in misleading people to the point of destroying their potential in the endless wild goose chase of esotericism, so-called.
Demand that supposed guides put their money where their mouth is, or move on to something else.
In any case, your analysis of me is off the mark.
The reality is that I have spent a good part of my life in the crossfire of the spiritual war behind the scenes whereby the rivals to the throne attempt to blow each other out of the water. It has left me somewhere between laughing and crying, and completely ready with a bronx cheer as to the spiritual dignity of the participants.
Look at a figure like E.J. Gold, insidiously plying his craft to destroy all rivals to the ‘Ouspensky book club’ by a takeover of the rotting material left behind by Gurdjieff’s grandiloquent todo over nothing.

History or renunciation?

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:33 am

Danny on ‘historical termination’
My remarks on ‘historical termination’ were merely an attempted retranslation of the much misused term ‘enlightenment’.
Much discussion of ‘spiritual paths’ is entirely vague, and amounts to wishful thinking about spiritual practices of diverse kinds.
The path to meditation becomes stress reduction, and the implications of, say, Buddhism are factored out into some kind of fantasy about spirituality.
The basic issue is, as I have said, a path in time, or out of time. Buddhism in its original form demanded world renunciation. Centuries of yogis have withdrawn from the world.
Rajneesh tried to challenge that tradition.
I merely thought to point out the ambiguity of the Gurdjieff work: it never makes an explicit reference to the path of enlightenment, it simply speaks of the work. That veiled omission can be the source of the eventual chaotification of those who follow that ‘path’, they really are drifting aimlessly toward nothing much.
Gurdjieff never really gave a way out of that surface cult-like allegiance to a sort of mystical club membership. The keys to do something real were simply ommitted. Everything that Gurdjieff did in his early years is veiled in disinformation. And his real aims were never made clear, in public.
The question of a ‘path in time’ is highly problematical. What does it amount to? A Buddhist would challenge that at once. It is all too easy to get lost in the vast stream of historical this and that.
But I would say that the potential for historical realization is there, and the many wrong ideas, it seems to me, of the ‘fourth way’ point to that, but misleadingly.

The question of the relationship to social existence is a complicated one. The world renunciation of the classic paths such as Buddhism is not so simple in our age, and perhaps that aspect of the ancient spiritual systems needs another perspective. There is no reason why the most ordinary circumstances of life can’t lead to something that is a ‘spiritual path’.
The modern world, despite the antagonism of traditionallists, has all the elements needed to base one’s ‘spiritual path’ on a sound foundation, in the concepts of human freedom and autonomy.
The traditionalists have become confused antiquarians and have lost their connection to the significance of modernity.
But the fact remains that the path through time might be aimless wandering, while a path toward enlightenment might lead to a coherent viewpoint with respect to melange of disorganized practices and methods which seem to become caught up in the commerce of New Age seminars and fads.
more later…

Gurdjieff the intelligence agent?

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:13 am

comment doubting Gurdjieff was a spy
The question of whether Gurdjieff was an intelligence agent is open to debate, but the strong suspicion is there:
Posts on Gurdjeff as intelligence agent