Introduction to the Mesoteric Stage 1 and 2 ~ transcribed


Introduction to the Mesoteric Stage 1 and 2 ~  December 30, 1971 and January 1, 1972 –
JG Bennett


“In the reading that we heard before dinner Gurdjieff said that we must learn to separate ourselves from ourselves. This is a very good example of a true saying that has quite different meanings according to the level or context in which you take it. He took it in one context in giving his explanation that you have to separate mind from feelings. And this is clearly enough necessary for us. If we can’t think without the coloring that comes from our feeling state, from our mood, our thinking will never be impartial, never, never be able to come to the situation as it really is. Again, he spoke about this separating oneself from oneself in terms of essence and personality but he quickly said, “for you, for you people here”, he was talking to the English people who started coming to him in September 1922, and this was February 1923, that is after five or six months with him there at the Prieure, there were only about 20 of them. He said “this is for you, at present, only possible to this extent that you can take your essence as representing, as being and your personality as being your thinking”. And so, he brought it back again to the same division before, but only apparently so.”

“There are various ways of answering this kind of question. We can answer it subjectively for ourselves in terms of the crude distinction of internal and external considering. Do I really wish unconsciously no doubt, but do I really …is it real; the real purpose of this activity is to feed my own self love? Or to cover up my own fears? Or have I no purpose which I have set myself in it, either consciously or unconsciously. Or the other way round, am I doing this for the sake of a definite purpose? Is the result of this activity of mine to enter other people? And if so in which way? Is it to satisfy their own self love and vanity? Is it for some other purpose than that? If I ask myself this question and say, but this person is only concerned with his or her self love and vanity, there’s nothing else at stake here, then I must respect that. I mustn’t wound their self love and vanity. I must behave towards them in a way that will give them what they wish. It is not for me to say what they ought to wish, or what might be good for them.
We have no right that anyone can verify; to attempt to impose what we think is good, on other people. And especially not to impose on them what we think is good for them. If the result of my activity is going to enter into another person I should think of what would satisfy that person. Except in the rare situations where this person either has told me, or I know without any doubt they don’t wish just to have their self love and vanity satisfied but to have something else. Even perhaps that they wish to be free from these things. Only then have I any right to do otherwise than what they would like to have done to them. “

Additional information

Stage 1 pages


Stage II Pages


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