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The lesson to be learned from the meeting of Chamberlain and Hitler in 1938 is that future Chamberlains must learn to listen to the deliberately suppressed third voice. As Gurdjieff said, the man who knows there are four voices has an additional weapon against falsity, for his hidden voice speaks to the other’s hidden voice, as his first voice speaks to the other’s first voice.

~ Anna Butkowsky "With Gurdjieff in St. Petersburg and Paris"



Questioner: Before knowing the work, I was much more restless, because I felt bad things of which I thought I would never be able to rid myself. This kept up in me a restlessness, not constant, perhaps, but very frequent. I have perceived that with the work, this passed, and I have felt calmer inside. I would like to find again my state of restlessness because this is lacking in me. What could I think or do in order to find it again?

Gurdjieff: Before you believed that you could succeed like that. With these results you can never do anything. You shall succeed only if you make an effort stronger than the ordinary. But you have not even the taste for it perhaps. You have already been here a long time—you are bound to understand what is effort. Self-effort. I am going to tell you a secret: self-effort is never possible all at once; a preparation is necessary. Struggle is necessary. Till one succeeds, one forgets, one remembers, one forgets, one remembers. But when you are seated, calm, you can think and begin to do, until now you still have made no effort.

~ George Gurdjieff "Paris/Wartime Meetings"



Man is subject to many influences, which can be divided into two categories. First, those which result from chemical and physical causes, and second, those which are associative in origin and are a result of our conditioning.

Chemico-physical influences are material in nature and result from the mixture of two substances which produce something new. They arise independently of us. They act from without.

For example, someone's emanations may combine with mine — the mixture produces something new. And this is true not only of external emanations; the same thing also happens inside a man.

You perhaps have noticed that you feel at ease or ill at ease when someone is sitting close to you. When there is no accord, we feel ill at ease.

Each man has different kinds of emanations, with their own, laws, allowing of various combinations. Emanations of one center form various combinations with emanations of another center. This kind of combination is 'chemical.' Emanations vary, even depending on whether I had tea or coffee.

Associative influences are quite different. If someone pushes me or weeps, the resulting action on me is mechanical. It touches off some memory and this memory or association gives rise in me to other associations, and so on. Owing to this shock my feelings, my thoughts change. Such a process is not chemical but mechanical.

These two kinds of influences come from things that are near to us. But there are also other influences which come from big things, from the earth, from the planets and from the sun, where laws of a different order operate. At the same time there are many influences of these great entities which cannot reach us if we are wholly under the influence of small things. First, to speak about chemico-physical influences. I said that man has several centers. I spoke about the carriage, the horse and the driver, and also about the shafts, the reins and the ether. Everything has its emanations and its atmosphere. The nature of each atmosphere is different from others because each has a different origin, each has different properties, and a different content. They are similar to one another, but the vibrations of their matter differ.

The carriage, our body, has an atmosphere with its own special properties.

My feelings also produce an atmosphere, the emanations of which may go a long way.

When I think as a result of my associations, the result is emanations of a third kind.

When there is a passenger instead of an empty place in the carriage, emanations are also different, distinct from the emanations of the driver. The passenger is not a country bumpkin; he thinks of philosophy and not about whiskey.

Thus every man may have four kinds of emanations, but not necessarily. Of some emanations he may have more, of others less. People are different in this respect; and one and the same man may also be different at different times. I had coffee but he hadn't — the atmosphere is different. I smoke but she sighs. There is always interaction, at times bad for me, at other times good. Every minute I am this or that, and around me it is so or so. And the influences inside me also vary. I can change nothing. I am a slave. These influences I call chemico-physical.

~ George Gurdjieff "Views from the Real World"



"I had reached the conclusion that Gurdjieff was more than a Teacher and less than a Prophet. He was a man with a true mission and he devoted his entire life to it. He needed people who could understand his message and yet he was compelled to make the message obscure and hard to understand. Therefore, he had to look for those who could acquire the required perspicacity and also the singleness of purpose to carry his work forward. Today, twenty-four years after his death, there are thirty or forty people in different parts of the world who are capable of transmitting the teaching, but there are very few who can look beyond the man to his message. The time to go deeper and bring out the core of the message is now coming and we must be prepared to make sacrifices of our own limited viewpoints to allow the greater image to emerge. This will take a number of years and there is no time to lose; for events are catching up on us."

~ JG Bennett "Witness"

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