Christianity - Teaching of Truth
Christianity "The Teaching of Truth"
Gospel of Judas / manuscript discovered after 1,700 years
Christianity "The Teaching of Truth"
This Crucial Concept can be taken as the essence of Gurdjieff’s Teaching.
It is important for us to understand, that what Gurdjieff brought to us, is a New way to approach Christianity, -a new way of becoming ‘Real Christians’-.
When talking about the aim of his institute Gurdjieff stated:
"The Institute can give very little. The program of the Institute, the aim of the Institute, the possibilities of the Institute can be expressed in few words: the Institute can help one to be able to be a Christian. Simple! , That is all!"
-G.I.Gurjieff / Views from the Real World,
Everyone who is seriously following this Work, must try to understand the role that Christianity played in Gurdjieff’s life, and in the teachings he brought to the West.
Gurdjieff’s nature was profoundly spiritual, but this is not taken seriously by people who favor the idea -that the Fourth Way is a teaching which leads to transformation through different methods and forms without any deeper spiritual significance -.
Contrary to this idea, the Fourth Way as Mr Gurdjieff intended to transmit it, approaches genuine transformation through Love and compassion, where efforts toward spiritual evolution are not divorced from our “Common Father Creator” as he calls him in "All and Everything".
“Real love is the basis of all, the foundations, the Source. The religions have perverted and deformed love. It was by love that Jesus performed miracles. Real love joined with magnetism. All accumulated vibrations create a current. This current brings the force of love.
Real love is a cosmic force which goes through us. If we crystallize it, it becomes a power—the greatest power in the world.”
-G.I.Gurdjieff – from Meetings at 6 rue des Colonels-Renard, Paris -1938
Gurdjieff Himself calls the Fourth Way “Esoteric Christianity”, leaving the door open for research and investigation, instead of accepting blindly what is stated by the church and different religions.
“The object of all real esotericism is to connect Man with the will of God” -Maurice Nicoll
This idea of “Esoteric Christianity” was emphasized from the beginning of Gurdjieff”s teachings, as we can see from different manuscripts and talks given by him.
Somehow the Christian approach has been push to the background, as if it was something non essential, presenting the Work -cold and devoid of real feelings, making it only an intellectual proposition-.
After Gurdjieff death many Fourth Way groups around the World have tried to put the idea of Christ aside or even completely forgot about it.
“Inner Morality is your aim. Your aim is to be Christian. But for that you must be able to do –and you cannot. When you are able to do, you will become Christian.” G.I.Gurdjieff / Views from the Real World,
Gurdjieff was always very straight forward when he was asked about Christ and Christianity, or whenever he wrote about it.
Here are few of the many examples :
"If instead of religion in general we take Christianity, then again there exists a “Christianity number one, that is to say, paganism in the guise of Christianity. Christianity number two is an emotional religion, sometimes very pure but without force, sometimes full of bloodshed and horror leading to the Inquisition, to religious wars. Christianity number three, instances of which are afforded by various forms of Protestantism, is based upon dialectic, argument, theories, and so forth. Then there is Christianity number four, of which men number one, number two, and number three have no conception whatever. "In actual fact Christianity number one, number two, and number three is simply external imitation. Only man number four strives to be a Christian and only man number five can actually be a Christian. For to be a Christian means to have the being of a Christian, that is, to live in accordance with Christ's precepts. "Man number one, number two, and number three cannot live in accordance with Christ's precepts because with them everything 'happens.' Today it is one thing and tomorrow it is quite another thing. Today they are ready to give away their last shirt and tomorrow to tear a man to pieces because he refuses to give up his shirt to them. They are swayed by every chance event. They are not masters of themselves and therefore they cannot decide to be Christians and really be Christians.”
G.I.Gurdjieff/ In search for the Miraculous / Chapter 4
"First of all it is necessary to understand that a Christian is not a man who calls himself a Christian or whom others call a Christian. A Christian is one who lives in accordance with Christ's precepts. Such as we are we cannot be Christians. In order to be Christians we must be able 'to do.' We cannot do; with us everything 'happens.' Christ says: 'Love your enemies,' but how can we love our enemies when we cannot even love our friends? Sometimes 'it loves' and sometimes 'it does not love.' Such as we are we cannot even really desire to be Christians because, again, sometimes 'it desires' and sometimes 'it does not desire.' And one and the same thing cannot be desired for long, because suddenly, instead of desiring to be a Christian, a man remembers a very good but very expensive carpet that he has seen in a shop. And instead of wishing to be a Christian he begins to think how he can manage to buy this carpet, forgetting all about Christianity. Or if somebody else does not believe what a wonderful Christian he is, he will be ready to eat him alive or to roast him on hot coals. In order to be a good Christian one must be. To be means to be master of oneself. If a man is not his own master he has nothing and can have nothing. And he cannot be a Christian. He is simply a machine, an automaton. A machine cannot be a Christian. Think for yourselves, is it possible for a motorcar or a typewriter or a gramophone to be Christian? They are simply things which are controlled by chance. They are not responsible. They are machines. To be a Christian means to be responsible. Responsibility comes later when a man even partially ceases to be a machine, and begins in fact, and not only in words, to desire to be a Christian."
G.I.Gurdjieff/ In search for the Miraculous / Chapter 6
"Generally speaking we know very little about Christianity and the form of Christian worship; we know nothing at all of the history and origin of a number of things. For instance, the church, the temple in which gather the faithful and in which services are carried out according to special rites; where was this taken from? Many people do not think about this at all. Many people think that the outward form of worship, the rites, the singing of canticles, and so on, were invented by the fathers of the church. Others think that this outward form has been taken partly from pagan religions and partly from the Hebrews. But all of it is untrue. The question of the origin of the Christian church, that is, of the Christian temple, is much more interesting than we think. To begin with, the church and worship in the form which they took in the first centuries of Christianity could not have been borrowed from paganism because there was nothing like it either in the Greek or Roman cults or in Judaism. The Jewish synagogue, the Jewish temple, Greek and Roman temples of various gods, were something quite different from the Christian church which made its appearance in the first and second centuries. The Christian church is—a school concerning which people have forgotten that it is a school. Imagine a school where the teachers give lectures and perform explanatory demonstrations without knowing that these are lectures and demonstrations; and where the pupils or simply the people who come to the school take these lectures and demonstrations for ceremonies, or rites, or 'sacraments,' i.e., magic. This would approximate to the Christian church of our times.
"The Christian church, the Christian form of worship, was not invented by the fathers of the church. It was all taken in a ready-made form from Egypt, only not from the Egypt that we know but from one which we do not know. This Egypt was in the same place as the other but it existed much earlier. Only small bits of it survived in historical times, and these bits have been preserved in secret and so well that we do not even know where they have been preserved.
"It will seem strange to many people when I say that this prehistoric Egypt was Christian many thousands of years before the birth of Christ, that is to say, that its religion was composed of the same principles and ideas that constitute true Christianity. Special schools existed in this prehistoric Egypt which were called 'schools of repetition.' In these schools a public repetition was given on definite days, and in some schools perhaps even every day, of the entire course in a condensed form of the sciences that could be learned at these schools. Sometimes this repetition lasted a week or a month. Thanks to these repetitions people who had passed through this course did not lose their connection with the school and retained in their memory all they had learned. Sometimes they came from very far away simply in order to listen to the repetition and went away feeling their connection with the school. There were special days of the year when the repetitions were particularly complete, when they were carried out with particular solemnity—and these days themselves possessed a symbolical meaning.
"These 'schools of repetition' were taken as a model for Christian churches—the form of worship in Christian churches almost entirely represents the course of repetition of the science dealing with the universe and man. Individual prayers, hymns, responses, all had their own meaning in this repetition as well as holidays and all religious symbols, though their meaning has been forgotten long ago."
G.I.Gurdjieff/ In search for the Miraculous / Chapter 15
“A Christian is a man who is able to fulfill the Commandments.
A man who is able to do all that is demanded of a Christian, both with his mind and his essence, is called a Christian without quotation marks. A man who, in his mind, wishes to do all that is demanded of a Christian, but can do so only with his mind and not with his essence, is called pre-Christian. And a man who can do nothing, even with his mind, is called a non- Christian.”
G.I.Gurdjieff /Views from the Real World / Separation of Oneself from oneself
“ Not all are united with Jesus, but Jesus is united with all. There are many possibilities of union which for us are both different and not different.” J.G.Bennett – Intermediate state of Salvation / The way to be free.