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Point of View

The Two Paths

This site attempts to view the world from somewhere in between two great teaching systems - one brought to the West by George Gurdjieff in the first half of the Twentieth Century, and another expounded by the Naqshbandi Sufi Brotherhood for much of the Islamic Era. Rather than dwelling on which came first or which influenced the other, this site will concentrate on how the two methods appear to be related today from the student's point of view.

Onion Layers

Admittedly, at the outset, it is a somewhat presumptuous undertaking that presupposes one has understood both of these complex systems well enough to begin a systematic comparison of the two. It is quite possible to read the Gurdjieff literature and attend group meetings for decades without ever having grasped the theoretical basis of the teaching. To some extent, this is true of most of us, because these teachings are like onions with layer upon layer of meaning. Ultimately, we are all on different paths tunnelling through the great cosmic onion. Therefore, the comparisons discussed in this site will necessarily be approximations.

Being There

Much of the impact of each of these systems is experiential, so written comparisons of this sort are essentially faint echoes of actually being there on either path. Even with these limitations in mind, however, the correspondences between these two paths are striking and the divergences and contrasts revealing.

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