The Gurdjieff Society of Ireland

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The Gurdjieff Work

"The work of Gurdjieff has many aspects. But through whatever form he expresses himself, his voice is heard as a call. He calls because he suffers from the inner chaos in which we live. He calls us to open our eyes. He asks us why we are here, what we wish for, what forces we obey. He asks us, above all, if we understand what we are. He wants us to bring everything back into question. And because he insists and his insistence compels us to answer, a relationship is created between him and ourselves which is an integral part of his work."

- Jeanne de Salzmann

"I suggest that, in order to understand better what I mean, each of you should now ask himself the question "What am I?" I am certain that 95 percent of you will be puzzled by this question and will answer with another one: "What do you mean?" And this will prove that a man has lived all his life without asking himself this question, has taken for granted, as axiomatic, that he is "something", even something very valuable, something he has never questioned. At the same time he is unable to explain to another what this something is. Is the reason he does not know because, in fact, this "something" does not exist but is merely assumed to exist? Is it not strange that people pay so little attention to themselves in the sense of self-knowledge?

True, this is not always so. Not everyone looks at himself so superficially. There do exist enquiring minds, which long for the truth of the heart, seek it, strive to solve the problems set by life, try to penetrate to the essence of things and phenomena and to penetrate into themselves. If a man reasons and thinks soundly, no matter what path he follows in solving these problems, he must inevitably arrive back at himself, and begin with the solution of the problem of what he is himself and what his place is in the world around him. For without this knowledge, he will have no focal point in his search. Socrates' words "Know thyself" remain for all those who seek true knowledge and being."

- G.I.Gurdjieff


 

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