George Gurdjieff: Teacher or Deceiver?

Excerpt from David Livingstone’s new book — via August 18, 2013

George Gurdjieff (1866 -1949), a charismatic hypnotist, carpet trader and spy of Armenian origin was the chief propagandist for the popularization of Sufism within the New Age.
Gurdjieff’s teaching claimed that human beings were helplessly caught in a “waking sleep” unable to fully perceive reality, but that it is possible for them to transcend to a higher state of consciousness and achieve their full human potential.
He developed a method for doing so called “The Work” or “the Method.” Because his method for awakening one’s consciousness was different from that of the fakir, monk or yogi, his discipline is also called the “Fourth Way.”
As Gurdjieff explained, “The way of the development of hidden possibilities is a way against nature and against God.”[4]
Gurdjieff’s deceptive and tyrannical ways led to his reputation as a “rascal guru.” He was widely referred to as a black magician, and Rasputin was so fearful of him that he was quoted to have said, “I had been especially careful not to look at Gurdjieff and not to allow him to look into my eyes…”[5]
He was criticized by many of his former students as being slovenly, gluttonous and was notorious for seducing his female students and fathering several illegitimate children. P. D. Ouspensky, his leading student, finally broke with him, claiming that he was “a very extraordinary man,” but that it was “dangerous to be near him.”[6]
Another of his famous student, J. G. Bennett, warned that Gurdjieff “is far more of an enigma than you can imagine. I am certain that he is deeply good, and that he is working for the good of mankind. But his methods are often incomprehensible.”[7]
Louis Pauwels, a former student of Gurdjieff, in his book Monsieur Gurdjieff, asserts that one of the “Searchers After Truth” that Gurdjieff speaks of in his book Meetings with Remarkable Men was Karl Haushofer  (1869-1946), “the magician, the secret master,” who through his student Rudolf Hess, influenced the development of Adolf Hitler’s geopolitical strategies.


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