Work in Life

Work in Life

To be able to work in life in the full sense would be considered a very high achievement. The struggle to be “present” in everyday life constitutes a major aspect of Gurdjieff ’s teaching, a struggle which leads to a full engagement in the duties and rewards of human life, now and here. In this context, Gurdjieff created conditions to help his pupils experience the fundamental practice of self-observation. Through such experience, a man or woman can begin to come into contact with an ever-deepening sense of inner need which allows an opening to a powerful conscious influence within oneself. According to Gurdjieff, without a relationship to this more central aspect of oneself, everyday life is bound to be an existential prison, in which the individual is held captive, not so much by the so-called forces of modernity, as by the parts of the self that cannot help but react automatically to the influences of the world. The help offered by the special conditions of the work is therefore understood not as replacing our life in the world, but as enabling us, in the course of time, to live life with authentic understanding and full participation.

 

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