top of page

Five fundamental spiritual aims

Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. Matthew 22:35-40 KJV

In Gurdijeff's book, "Beelzebub Tales to His Grandson", he alludes to the mythical organisation of human existence according to the Divine Ashiata Shiemash, in that:

"...All the beings of that planet then began to work in order to have in their consciousness this divine function of genuine Conscience, and for this purpose, as everywhere in the Universe, they transubstantiated in themselves what are called the 'being-obligolnian strivings' of which there are five, namely:

First Striving: "To have in their ordinary being-existence everything satisfying and really necessary for their planetary body."

Second Striving: "To have a constant and unflagging instinctive need for self-perfection in the sense of being."

Third Striving: "The conscious striving to know ever more and more concerning the laws of World-creation and World-maintenance."

Fourth Striving: "The striving from the beginning of their existence to pay for their arising and their individuality as quickly possible, in order afterwards to be free to lighten as much as possible the Sorrow of our Common Father."

Fifth Striving: "The striving always to assist the most rapid perfecting of other beings, both those similar to oneself and those of other forms, up to the degree of the sacred Martfotai, that is, up to the degree of self-individuality..."

The First Striving is relatively straight forward - give the physical body (the lower part of the Soul) what it needs rather than what is wants (i.e., don't indulge). These "needs" need to be known from the outside (i.e., informed by medical science) and from the inside (i.e., informed by the experience of bodily sensations - the gateway to the energies of the Soul).

The Second Striving moves towards the growth of the middle part of the Soul, whereby, a constant rousing of oneself is needed to strengthen the visceral feeling (connected to the body) for disciplined spiritual action - that is, pursuit of a relentless reminder to come 'inwards'.

The Third Striving is to understand the world, not just theoretically, conceptually or philosophically, but through direct, concrete and validated experience - a mystical and mathematical correspondence where experience and experiment are indistinguishable.

The Fourth Striving is to achieve one's own essential 'individuality', or 'I' or 'True Self', firmly rooted in the process of Soul creation and relatively independent of outside or external influences, including regard to one's personal welfare.

The Fifth Striving is the most unusual, in that, one must help others (i.e., one's neighbour) 'similar to oneself' (i.e., those who are spiritually inclined, whether they follow your particular teaching or not) and 'beings of other forms' (i.e., those who are not spiritually inclined or even Human) to individuality.

The Fifth Striving, connected to Christ's commandment of "love thy neighbour as thyself", has deep implications for the Gurdjieff Teaching and the purpose of Christ's work.


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page