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Poor Miss Gordon was rigid with fear. Then he [Gurdjieff] talked about emanation of all bodies. He said, "We emanate. This is an active function; a dirty process, as dirty as making merde. But sometimes there can be something else but dirt in emanations." I was waiting to hear what, and he looked at me and said, "No. That I not tell."

He went on. "The earth emanates. The atmosphere around planet is its emanation." Again he looked at me, hanging breathless in mid-air, and said, "Many more things like this I know but can never tell." He says that curiosity about all this unknown knowledge "stinks."

~ "Gurdjieff and the Women of the Rope"



‘The system of training is based on the following conclusions: The life of our time has become so complex that man has deviated from his original type — a type that should have become dependent upon his surroundings: the country where he was born, the environment in which he was brought up, and the culture in which he was nurtured. These conditions should have marked out for a man his path of development and the normal type which he should have arrived at; but our civilization, with its almost unlimited means of influencing a man, has made it almost impossible for him to live in the conditions which should be normal to him. While civilization has opened up for man new horizons in knowledge and science and has raised his material standard of living, thereby widening his world-perception, it has, instead of lifting him to a higher level all round, only developed certain faculties to the detriment of others; some it has completely destroyed. Our civilization has taken away from man the natural and essential qualities of his inherited type, but it has not given him what was needed for the harmonious development of a new type, so that civilization, instead of producing an individually whole man adapted to the nature and surroundings in which he finds himself and which really were responsible for his creation, has produced a being out of his element, incapable of living a full life, and at the same time a stranger to that inner life which should by rights be his.

~ CS Nott quoting AR Orage in "The Teachings of Gurdjieff - A Pupil's Journey"



"In west—your world—is belief that man have soul given by God. Not so. Nothing given by God, only Nature give. And Nature only give possibility for soul, not give soul. Must acquire soul through work. But unlike tree, man have many possibilities. As man now exist he have also possibility grow by accident —grow wrong way. Man can become many things, not just fertilizer, not just real man: can become what you call 'good' or 'evil', not proper things for man. Real man not good or evil—real man only conscious, only wish acquire soul for proper development"....

"Think of good and evil like right hand and left hand. Man always have two hands—two sides of self—good and evil. One can destroy other. Must have aim to make both hands work together, must acquire third thing: thing that make peace between two hands, between impulse for good and impulse for evil. Man who all 'good' or man who all 'bad' is not whole man, is one-sided. Third thing is conscience; possibility to acquire conscience is already in man when born; this possibility given—free—by Nature. But is only possibility. Real conscience can only be acquired by work, by learning to understand self first."....

"You remember," he said then, "how I tell about good and evil in man—like right hand, left hand? In other sense, this also true of man and woman. Man is active, positive, good in Nature. Woman is passive, negative, evil. Not evil in your American sense like 'wrong', but very necessary evil; evil that make man good. Is like electric light—one wire passive or negative; other wire active, positive. Without such two elements not have light. If Mme. Schernvall not evil for me, perhaps I forget promise, serious promise, I make to her. So without her help, because she not let me forget what I promise, I not keep promise, not do good for my soul. When give back earrings I do good thing: good for me, for memory of wife, and good for Mme. Schernvall who now have great remorse in heart for bad things she say about me. This important lesson for you."

~ Fritz Peters quoting Mr. Gurdjieff in "Boyhood With Gurdjieff"



At dinner I had the misfortune – no, good fortune – to ask [Gurdjieff] a "mental" question. Thunderbolts fell. "Now you know your illness, your sickness. It is curiosity – American curiosity. Always you want to know more and more without understanding what already I have said to you. For that you will die merde." Tears from me, of course. He asked, "You angry?" I said, "No, it's true."

When he left, he said, "Tonight you were bitten by your flea. You be careful not to catch more fleas or you cannot sleep in your bed."

~ "Gurdjieff and the Women of the Rope"



"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."

~ George Gurdjieff "Paris/Wartime Meetings"

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