Gurdjieff Studies

P D Ouspensky

Ouspensky on Gurdjieff



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P. D. Ouspensky

"I have found the miracle"



"Suddenly he (Ouspensky) appeared at the table, showing an emotion that was very unusual for him, and without pausing for a formal 'Good morning' or even stopping to sit down he said, 'I think this time we've really found what we need! I must tell you all about it. I have found the Miracle!'

With Gurdjieff in

St. Petersburg and Paris

Anna Butkovsky-Hewitt



"I was in another room," said Ouspensky. "I heard Gurdjieff's voice speaking inside me. He told me something, something very important."

Ouspensky's eyes became glazed. He seemed to go into a trance. The zoubrovka perhaps - or the memory of Gurdjieff. Hoping to restart this intriguing conversation I piped up in my prissy English voice, "He must have been a very strange man, that Mr Gurdjieff."

Ouspensky gazed at me as if I had said something ridiculous.

"Strange! He was extraordinary! You cannot possibly imagine how extraordinary Gurdjieff was."

Warrior's Way

Robert de Ropp




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G. I. Gurdjieff

"He was extraordinary!"


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Katherine Mansfield

"Gurdjieff was very good to her"



Soon after my return to London I heard of her (Katherine Mansfield's) death. Gurdjieff was very good to her, he did not insist upon her going although it was clear that she could not live. For this in the course of time he received the due amount of lies and slanders.

In Search of the Miraculous

P. D. Ouspensky



From notes of a meeting held on November 4, 1937

Ouspensky: Gurdjieff gave me many new ideas I did not know before, and he gave a system I did not know before. About schools I did know, for I had been travelling and looking for schools for 10 years. He had an extraordinary system, and quite new. Some separate fragments of it could be found elsewhere, but not connected and put together like they are in this system. And certain things, particularly belonging to the psychological side, were quite a revelation. And also on many other lines. This was sufficient proof for me that this system was not a thing one can meet with every day. And I had already met with a sufficient number of schools to able to judge.

Question: Did you never ask Gurdjieff about the origin of the system?

Ouspensky: We all asked about 10 times a day and every time the answer was different.

Question: Did you ask Gurdjieff why he always gave different answers?

Ouspensky: Yes.

Question: What did he say?

Ouspensky: He said he never gave different answers.

Question: Has it ever crossed your mind to regret having ever met Gurdjieff?

Ouspensky: Never. Why? I got very much from him. I am always very grateful to myself that after the first evening I asked him when I could see him next time. If I had not, we would not be sitting here now.

Question: But you wrote two very brilliant books.

Ouspensky: They were only books. I wanted more. I wanted something for myself.

Question: Where did the schools come from that taught Gurdjieff’s school?

Ouspensky: It is possible to understand that it was somewhere in Central Asia. But what it was, I don’t know. Gurdjieff gave several descriptions, and one of them was very interesting and possible. You must understand the situation: after the Revolution, the possibility to go to that country disappeared. If life were normal, I would go there and try to find this school, but as it is there was no possibility to go there. And probably now everything has disappeared. One school he described was near Kashgar in Chinese Turkestan. But round it there has been war ever since, so probably nothing remains of it now, if there was such a school.

P. D. Ouspensky: A Biographical Outline

Compiled by Merrily E. Taylor

Copyright © 1978 Yale University Library


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