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  • Writer's pictureby Essence Diaries

Forth Way


Hi guys, found this extract from a book named THE FOURTH WAY. Hope it will

give you a new approach of spirituality....

K


“Schools are not all the same. For some kind of people one kind of school is

necessary, for another kind of people there is another kind of school. There is no

universal school for all kinds of people. This brings us to the subject of different

ways.

But before speaking about the ways it is necessary to realize that thousands of

years ago people came to the idea that man can change, that he can acquire

something he has not got. What he can acquire was expressed differently and

approached from different angles, but the general idea was always the same—

that man can develop, that he can acquire something new. So there were formed

three ways corresponding to the division of man into man No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3.


The first way is the way of the Fakir. It is a long, difficult and uncertain way.

A fakir works on the physical body, on conquering physical pain.


The second way is the way of the Monk. This way is shorter, more sure and

more definite. It requires certain conditions, but above all it requires faith, for if

there is no faith a man cannot be a true monk.


The third way is the way of the Yogi, the way of knowledge and consciousness.


When we speak about the three ways we speak about principles. In actual life

they are seldom met with in a pure form, for they are mostly mixed. But if you

know the principle, when you study school practices you can separate which

practice belongs to which way. When we speak of yogis we really take only

Jnana-Yoga and Raja-Yoga. Jnana-Yoga is the yoga of knowledge, of a new way

of thinking. It teaches to think in different categories, not in the categories of space

and time and of causality. And Raja-Yoga is work on being, on consciousness.

Although in many respects these ways are very efficient, the characteristic thing

about them is that the first step is the most difficult. From the very first moment

you have to give up everything and do what you are told. If you keep one little

thing, you cannot follow any of these ways. So, although the three ways are good

in many other respects, they are not sufficiently elastic. For instance, they do

not suit our present mode of life.


The Fakir is an exaggerated No. 1 man with a heavy predominance of

instinctive-moving centre. The Monk is an exaggerated No. 2 man with the

emotional centre developed and the others under-developed. The Yogi is an

exaggerated No. 3 man with the intellectual centre developed and the others

not sufficiently developed. If only these three traditional ways existed, there would

be nothing for us, for we are too over-educated for these ways.


But there is a Fourth Way which is a special way, not a combination of the other

three. It is different from others first of all in that there is no external giving up of

things, for all the work is inner. A man must begin work in the same conditions

in which he finds himself when he meets it, because these conditions are the best

for him. If he begins to work and study in these conditions, he can attain

something, and later, if it is necessary, he will be able to change them, but not

before he sees the necessity for it. So at first one continues to live the same life as

before, in the same circumstances as before. In many respects this way proves

more difficult than the others, for nothing is harder than to change oneself

internally without changing externally.


Then in the Fourth Way the first principle is that man must not believe anything;

he must learn; so faith does not enter into the Fourth Way. One must not

believe what one hears or what one is advised, one must find proofs for

everything. If one is convinced that something is true, then one can believe it, but

not before. This is a brief outline of the difference between the four ways.”


P. D. OUSPENSKY

THE FOURTH WAY

A RECORD OF TALKS AND ANSWERS TO

QUESTIONS BASED ON THE TEACHING OF G. I. GURDJIEFF

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