MARCH 13 — GEORGE GURDJIEFF QUOTES
PHILOLOGY WAS A BETTER ROUTE TO TRUTH THAN PHILOSOPHY
During the reading, Gurdjieff watched the listeners to evaluate what he had written and the exactness of its translation. New guests were surprised that he considered a single word or the flow of a sentence so very important, but we translators already knew Gurdjieff as ‘the teacher of exactness.’ For us, the translation was a school that freed us from our subjective conceptions and views. Thanks to the creation of a new, exact language, we came to an understanding which we couldn't have imagined in the beginning. With Gurdjieff we came to use words precisely. He stated clearly that philology was a better route to Truth than philosophy.
~ Louise Goepfert March “The Gurdjieff Years”
ONE MUST WITH ALL HIS PRESENCE HAVE AN AIM
Questioner: In the exercises, I am very troubled by associations. I can do nothing against them. What shall I do?
Gurdjieff: Associations are a part of our presence. If our presence had an aim, it would want something to happen. This proves that our presence has no aim. You have an aim only with one center (he wants to arrive at Paradise with dirty boots). One must with all his presence have an aim and work for this goal. Not with one part, one center only. I have associations, but they do not reach my consciousness. The circulation of the blood is also done all alone. It is an automatic function. It does not disturb me. It goes on night and day. There are associations also, as my heart working, and there are other functions; for example, I see, if I pay attention; like that which I have eaten travels [in my stomach]. I can think about this all evening, each centimeter gives different sensations. Automatically you are occupied with this. You must have an aim, and leave at the side the organic functions. Not to hear them with the consciousness, with the thought. One must learn to think impartially. Only this amount of effort will bring you to normal thought.
~ George Gurdjieff "Paris/Wartime Meetings"
EVERY PERSON IS UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF SUGGESTION
"The third kind of influence, suggestion, is very powerful. Every person is under the influence of suggestion; one person suggests to another. Many suggestions occur very easily, especially if we don't know that we are being exposed to suggestion. But even if we do know, suggestions penetrate.
"It is very important to understand one law. As a rule, at every moment of our life only one center works in us—either mind or feeling. Our feeling is of one kind when another center is not looking on, when the ability to criticize is absent. By itself a center has no consciousness, no memory; it is a chunk of a particular kind of meat without salt, an organ, a certain combination of substances which merely possesses a special capacity of recording.
"Indeed it greatly resembles the coating of a recording tape. If I say something to it, it can later repeat it. It is completely mechanical, organically mechanical. All centers differ slightly as to their substance, but their properties are the same.
"Now, if I say to one center that you are beautiful, it believes it. If I tell it that this is red—it also believes. But it does not understand—its understanding is quite subjective. Later, if I ask it a question, it repeats in reply what I have said. It will not change in a hundred, in a thousand years—it will always remain the same. Our mind has no critical faculty in itself, no consciousness, nothing. And all the other centers are the same."
~ George Gurdjieff "Views from the Real World"
HIS VERY METHOD OF WORK OFTEN REQUIRED THAT PEOPLE SHOULD NEEDLESSLY BE SET IN CONFLICT
“Gurdjieff had done nothing to harmonize these differences. On the contrary, his very method of work often required that people should needlessly be set in conflict. Again and again, he would give two or more people, without telling the others, authority to act for him in a particular matter. They would all set to work, and find the others in the field. Each was sure that he alone was the one Gurdiieff had intended to do the job. This led to endless friction and misunderstanding, which we accepted as the stimulus that would make us search within ourselves for a deeper understanding. Too easy outward conditions could lead to the illusion that we understood and accepted one another. One of the Aphorisms in the Study House at Fontainebleau read: ‘The worse the conditions the more productive the work: providing you work consciously.’ Gurdjieff would never be satisfied with the illusion of harmony if the substance were lacking.”
~ JG Bennett “Witness”
MARCH 13 — GEORGE GURDJIEFF QUOTES