What do you do?
DIRECT TO “CORE OF THE PRACTICE”
What would my commitment be? How often do you meet and conduct other activities?
Do I need to give up my current religious practice?
No. In fact, many students of the Fourth Way report a new, deeper understanding and appreciation of the various religious practices of their youth and a realization of the common esoteric core of all religions.
Have my past experiences and education prepared me for this practice?
Yes and no. Our culturally indoctrinated education about ourselves, life and society are, according to Gurdjieff, the common source of our distorted understanding about Reality. De-programming from all we’ve been taught releases a source of energy for our efforts to “Wake Up”. We have to unlearn in order to discover the Reality that lies beneath our misunderstandings and misperceptions. There is likely nothing in the educational background of ordinary people to prepare for Gurdjieff’s revolutionary ideas and practices. On the other hand, people drawn to this approach may have had tastes of “mystical” experiences or intuited a Reality behind ordinary reality. Such a partially developed deeper perception may signal an already partial opening to what Gurdjieff is pointing toward.
Do you do community service?
Gurdjieff “schools” have three primary service aims as part of the practice. These are known as “Work on Oneself, Work with Others (within the group), and Work for the Work.” These are designed to facilitate development of objectivity towards oneself and others, and the development of real “Conscience”. These capacities will then be naturally carried into manifestation in ordinary life as part of the responsibility to reduce negativity in the world and model the possibility to others of living a Conscious life of Presence in the moment. Gurdjieff observed that it is naïve to believe we can help others without first truly knowing how to help ourselves. In current parlance, one must “walk the walk” rather than just “talk the talk”. Sometimes a group may manifest an outward service activity, but the primary reason for doing so is to create conditions for inner work of being Present in every aspect of oneself while engaging in ordinary life, thus facilitating the practice of compassion and objectivity towards others without sentimentality or consideration of one’s self-image.