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Self Remembering

posted May 21, 2012, 8:14 AM by Jim Turner   [ updated Jun 29, 2012, 8:43 AM ]

May  21, 2012

"One of the best ways to Work on self Remembering is to remove what is not self Remembering. In the end, nothing stands between you and Self Remembering but yourself. The more one Remembers oneself, the more one is able to remember oneself, because self remembering is a cumulative process - we can introduce it at any time and it cuts through everything to the very meaning of existence. Self Remembering is an eighteen - hour day endeavor - One must be working with some obstacle every hour of the day, and if it is not non-existence or power, it will be imagination, inner considering or identification."  -   by Pierre Elliot

Eight Precepts: The Essence of the Teaching of the Masters of Wisdom 

1. Be present at every breath. Do not let your attention wander for the duration of a single breath.

2. Remember yourself always and in all situations.

3. Keep your intention before you at every step you take. You wish for freedom and you must never forget it.

4. Your journey is towards your homeland. Remember that you are traveling from the world of appearances to the World of Reality.

4. In all your outward activity remain inwardly free. Learn not to identify yourself with anything whatsoever.

5. Remember your Friend, i.e. God. Let the prayer of your tongue be the prayer of your heart.

6. Return to God. No aim but to attain Reality.

7. Struggle with all alien thoughts. Keep your mind on what you are doing whether outwardly or inwardly.

8. Be constantly aware of the quality of the Divine Presence. Become used to re cognizing the Presence of God in your heart.

These precepts/techniques of the 12th century master, Abdulhalik Gudjduvani 1, underscore the enormity of the quest. While the Gurdjieff pupil can appreciate the range and depth of these principles, there may be a certain lingering puzzlement over the religious cast of the techniques. This is, to say the least, a pivotal point.

The journey to consciousness always brings the God - the Absolute - into the equation. However, upon closer inspection, the introduction of this element may not be as foreign to the Gurdjieff outlook as it at first seems. Consider, for a moment, the diagrams on awareness that Rodney Collin, a student and protégé of P.D. Ouspensky, included in his book, The Theory of Celestial Influence.

In three simple diagrams, Collin builds the elements of self remembering, and explores the relationships between them. His diagram is shown in three stages. First, someone beholds a tree in the state of fascination.

The arrow points one way, because the energy of attention is only flowing only outward. He has forgotten himself. This is the ordinary state of our awareness, an absorption in the things surrounding us. His second diagram depicts the division of attention.

Here the beholder sees both the tree and himself looking at the tree. He has divided his attention and directs some of his awareness back upon himself. However, this is still not self remembering, because the occurrence of consciousness is a real phenomenon, and by definition, it must bring a third force into play. The third diagram depicts this third enveloping force and its position in the flow.

Here the beholder divides his attention, but also opens his awareness to a higher force, which embraces and enables the entire act of seeing. Self remembering is the cognition.

How many long-time Gurdjieff students have trained with the intensity of decathlon athletes to raise their levels of self awareness just so far, only to reach the inevitable "training plateau?" For many, a programmatic and sustained invocation of the divine creator, a central ritual of all ages, has reportedly provided that transcendent element to push beyond the envelope of "self." In any event, the idea is not inconsistent with the concept of Law of Three in its application to the completed "event" of self remembering.

Self remembering, therefore, involves some sort of overarching awareness and a spark strong enough to light it. Anyone reading between the lines will recognize in Ouspensky's writings the passion of his search, belying his usual image as a dry intellectual. With crystalline logic, he wove the description of Gurdjieff's presentation of transformation, repeatedly asserting that at some point the emotional energies must be brought to bear on the Work ideas if these ideas were to be indelibly imprinted on the beholder. Ouspensky pursued an ordered approach to Gurdjieff's teaching with a sustained desire for truth, and this is what inspired his cool headed reckoning of time and space in and about his master's intricate cosmology. A resolute focus on the Unity and Reality of the Creator of All supplies this movement.

Gurdjieff characterized his as a mission to blend the wisdom of the East with the knowledge of the West. It was a highly experimental proposition from the start. It has brought very powerful ideas to thousands of Westerners who would never have encountered them otherwise. Gurdjieff postulated higher orders of man, numbered up to seven in his scheme denoting degrees of development where only stations counted, not states. The paths to these stations lead through a place of fusion, where certain inner qualities are fixed or reconnected to form and reform our central natures. Self remembering, remembrance, light the way on the path.

"... in the Fourth Way, which is the way of Service and Work to the world. If we wish to serve we must know, as many of us have learned the hard way, that we cannot do it so long as we remain as we are - we have to change. And this is why in the Fourth Way there is the essential element of teaching how to change, or giving people the know how, giving them the conditions in which they change themselves."

-  extract from document: "The Fourth Way" by Pierre Elliot


1 Abdulhalik Gudjduvani succeeded to the leadership of the Khwajagan soon after the birth of Jenghis Khan in A.D. 1167. His mother was a princess of the Seljuk Dynasty. He was initiated to the Mastery not by another Master, but by the Unknown Prophet Khidr 2 himself. It is also said that he took the name Abdulhalik (which means the servant of God charged with a creative mission) at the command of Khidr himself.
Abdulhalik died in A.D. 1190

Khidr or Al-Khidr (Arabic: الخضر‎ "the Green One", also transcribed Khidr, Khidar, Khizr, Khizar and Persian: خضر, Turkish: Hızır) is a revered figure in Islam, whom the Qur'an describes as a righteous servant of God, who possessed great mystic knowledge. He was contemporary with Moses, but is not identified as living in Israel or being an Israelite. Although the Qur'an does not mention Khidr as a prophet, other sources list him as one. Khiḍr is named as the figure that Moses accompanies and whose challenging actions disturb Moses, leading to Moses violating his oath to not ask any questions. This incident and others have led to the description attributed to Khidr of being a "teacher to the prophets". In some parts of the Islamic world, including Turkey, Syria and Palestine, Khidr is considered a parallel to Saint George.