Gurdjieff's 82 Rules For Life

Odin

Jedi
37. Conquer your fears, for each of them represents a camouflaged desire.
"I never thought of my fears are camouflage of something else like desire. I don't have immediate recognition that this might be true, so this is something to keep in my mind for further insight."

I agree, @Mikkael. This rule seems very appealing to me but I do not understand it completely. I can't think of any example from my own life where I can see this as true. It must be that I have not overserved myself enough or in the correct manner. Will be interesting to see if something comes up now that we think more about this.

47. Regard what does not belong to you as if it did belong to you.
I'm not sure of this one either, it certainly is not about appropriating things of others but rather acting in the spirit to be free to use what does not belong to me but could be used when appropriate? And when that is? Not sure I'm grasping this.
The meaning of this one seems to me to mean that we should treat things belonging to others as well as we would treat our own things. Here I think of how some people treat things that they rent. Some people just go "crazy" with a rented car for example. Driving it in ways they would never do if it were their own.

I will also thank you @Ryan for posting this list. Very interesting!
 

brandon

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
47. Regard what does not belong to you as if it did belong to you.

I'm not sure of this one either, it certainly is not about appropriating things of others but rather acting in the spirit to be free to use what does not belong to me but could be used when appropriate? And when that is? Not sure I'm grasping this.

I interpreted that one as meaning: treat things that don't belong to you as well as you would treat your own things..

[edit: yep, what Odin said :)]
 

T.C.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
47. Regard what does not belong to you as if it did belong to you.
I'm not sure of this one either, it certainly is not about appropriating things of others but rather acting in the spirit to be free to use what does not belong to me but could be used when appropriate? And when that is? Not sure I'm grasping this.

I could be wrong, but my interpretation of this was the same as “Do unto others…” In the sense that you should respect everything the same way as you would if it belonged to you. But there might be more to it than.
 

ELT

Padawan Learner
22. Do not speak of your personal problems.
Thanks to the posts above for lighting this one up.
Indeed, from session 05/18/2019, there was a list of things to do in order to protect oneself against hyperdimensional manipulation and harm.

One of the point was (from my notes)
* Share impressions and troubles :. --> thoughts, worries, fears, etc. to have feedbacks, information, perspective. Not doing this "dramatically changes the inner landscape and can even shut down the receptors so that you are more subject to STS manipulation of thoughts and feelings via mechanical means" (chemicals, beaming, etc.)
So is rule n°22 really valid ? The context must intervene once again (?).
 

Ryan

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I'm not sure of this one either, it certainly is not about appropriating things of others but rather acting in the spirit to be free to use what does not belong to me but could be used when appropriate? And when that is? Not sure I'm grasping this.
I see it similarly to the previous responses regarding what G. meant by this rule: treating other people's property with the same respect and care you would afford your own.

When I think about G.’s Work, I notice that there is no mention of networking whatsoever - like, anywhere.
Well, "networking" is a relatively recent/modern term, and we certainly use the idea in an expanded way, but I think the same essential concept is absolutely present in G's Work. Note his descriptions of the "circles" of humanity, his definition of exoteric, mesoteric and esoteric groups, his ideas of "preparatory groups", his emphasis on "putting someone on the step behind you" in order to advance, his and his students' escape from the Bolshevik revolution, his creation of the Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man, his business deals to support his Work, his group meetings during the Nazi occupation of France, his later voyages to and from America, setting up communities there... the list goes on. I think networking was not only deeply integrated into Fourth Way philosophy, but very much lived knowledge by Gurdjieff and his students, even if they didn't have quite the same expanded understanding of the principle that we have, thanks to the C's.
 

3DStudent

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Thanks for the list. I saw it some years ago and need to reread it. I like the idea of selecting one to read or meditate on each day, sort of like those paper calendars with quotes. A lot sound like certain axioms we've heard before.

22. Do not speak of your personal problems.
I read this as don't be overly gossipy or expressive of negative emotions.

37. Conquer your fears, for each of them represents a camouflaged desire.
Sounds like JBP's quote that's something like, "Treasure lies in the place you most avoid." Or, "The dragon hides the gold."

47. Regard what does not belong to you as if it did belong to you.
My personal blink interpretation but I was thinking it meant to be grateful for what you have. Something like, "I have all I need." or, "The Universe is abundant."
 
74. If you are hesitating between doing and not doing, take the risk of doing.
This is a very good rule for me to remember. I recall a discussion on this forum at some point on the ideas of doing and nondoing, I what I took away from it was that inaction can be a great sin against existence. Of course, I don’t think this means acting impulsively but rather not letting the fear of “what ifs” stop us from doing something.
I’m rereading Meetings With Remarkable Men right now and it seems like G’s decision to DO led to him learning many of the things that influenced his teachings.
 

JeanneT

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Number 22, "Do not speak of your personal problems", bothered me at first, as not only have we been encouraged to network by the C's, but not doing so seems to be a major block to further progression. However, I know many people who ONLY speak of their personal issues...even with strangers! It seems that at some point in their lives they may have collected an emotional reward or support by being completely candid. These folks almost seem to be addicted to telling their stories, especially if they feel like victims. In those cases, the victim archetype seems to be leading and there is enjoyment in the sharing and gaining something....sympathy, pay back, attention, understanding??? I have also observed that with many there is little interest in moving on, letting go or discussion of anything else but the event or circumstance that has created the story. They are not asking for feedback...only an ear to download the details to and witness their lot in life. With others, presenting as an open book may be a learned protection...if I tell you everything then all barriers are down from the beginning? Of course, from my point of view, there are many reasons why some individuals tell all and as with everything, there is necessity for balance and wisdom on what, how and with whom one will share.
 

Julia

A Disturbance in the Force
I hadn't read this list before and found it very inspiring. Well worth printing out and referring to a regular basis.


Gurdjieff's 82 Rules For Life

1. Ground your attention on yourself. Be conscious at every moment of what you are thinking, sensing, feeling, desiring, and doing.

2. Always finish what you have begun.

3. Whatever you are doing, do it as well as possible.

4. Do not become attached to anything that can destroy you in the course of time.

5. Develop your generosity – but secretly.

6. Treat everyone as if he or she was a close relative.

7. Organize what you have disorganized.

8. Learn to receive and give thanks for every gift.

9. Stop defining yourself.

10. Do not lie or steal, for you lie to yourself and steal from yourself.


11. Help your neighbor, but do not make him dependent.

12. Do not encourage others to imitate you.

13. Make work plans and accomplish them.

14. Do not take up too much space.

15. Make no useless movements or sounds.

16. If you lack faith, pretend to have it.

17. Do not allow yourself to be impressed by strong personalities.

18. Do not regard anyone or anything as your possession.

19. Share fairly.

20. Do not seduce.


21. Sleep and eat only as much as necessary.

22. Do not speak of your personal problems.

23. Do not express judgment or criticism when you are ignorant of most of the factors involved.

24. Do not establish useless friendships.

25. Do not follow fashions.

26. Do not sell yourself.

27. Respect contracts you have signed.

28. Be on time.

29. Never envy the luck or success of anyone.

30. Say no more than necessary.


31. Do not think of the profits your work will engender.

32. Never threaten anyone.

33. Keep your promises.

34. In any discussion, put yourself in the other person’s place.

35. Admit that someone else may be superior to you.

36. Do not eliminate, but transmute.

37. Conquer your fears, for each of them represents a camouflaged desire.

38. Help others to help themselves.

39. Conquer your aversions and come closer to those who inspire rejection in you.

40. Do not react to what others say about you, whether praise or blame.


41. Transform your pride into dignity.

42. Transform your anger into creativity.

43. Transform your greed into respect for beauty.

44. Transform your envy into admiration for the values of the other.

45. Transform your hate into charity.

46. Neither praise nor insult yourself.

47. Regard what does not belong to you as if it did belong to you.

48. Do not complain.

49. Develop your imagination.

50. Never give orders to gain the satisfaction of being obeyed.


51. Pay for services performed for you.

52. Do not proselytize your work or ideas.

53. Do not try to make others feel for you emotions such as pity, admiration, sympathy, or complicity.

54. Do not try to distinguish yourself by your appearance.

55. Never contradict; instead, be silent.

56. Do not contract debts; acquire and pay immediately.

57. If you offend someone, ask his or her pardon; if you have offended a person publicly, apologize publicly.

58. When you realize you have said something that is mistaken, do not persist in error through pride; instead, immediately retract it.

59. Never defend your old ideas simply because you are the one who expressed them.

60. Do not keep useless objects.


61. Do not adorn yourself with exotic ideas.

62. Do not have your photograph taken with famous people.

63. Justify yourself to no one, and keep your own counsel.

64. Never define yourself by what you possess.

65. Never speak of yourself without considering that you might change.

66. Accept that nothing belongs to you.

67. When someone asks your opinion about something or someone, speak only of his or her qualities.

68. When you become ill, regard your illness as your teacher, not as something to be hated.

69. Look directly, and do not hide yourself.

70. Do not forget your dead, but accord them a limited place and do not allow them to invade your life.


71. Wherever you live, always find a space that you devote to the sacred.

72. When you perform a service, make your effort inconspicuous.

73. If you decide to work to help others, do it with pleasure.

74. If you are hesitating between doing and not doing, take the risk of doing.

75. Do not try to be everything to your spouse; accept that there are things that you cannot give him or her but which others can.

76. When someone is speaking to an interested audience, do not contradict that person and steal his or her audience.

77. Live on money you have earned.

78. Never brag about amorous adventures.

79. Never glorify your weaknesses.

80. Never visit someone only to pass the time.


81. Obtain things in order to share them.

82. If you are meditating and a devil appears, make the devil meditate too.
Спасибо!
 
Well, "networking" is a relatively recent/modern term, and we certainly use the idea in an expanded way, but I think the same essential concept is absolutely present in G's Work. Note his descriptions of the "circles" of humanity, his definition of exoteric, mesoteric and esoteric groups, his ideas of "preparatory groups", his emphasis on "putting someone on the step behind you" in order to advance, his and his students' escape from the Bolshevik revolution, his creation of the Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man, his business deals to support his Work, his group meetings during the Nazi occupation of France, his later voyages to and from America, setting up communities there... the list goes on. I think networking was not only deeply integrated into Fourth Way philosophy, but very much lived knowledge by Gurdjieff and his students, even if they didn't have quite the same expanded understanding of the principle that we have, thanks to the C's.
I agree with you here @Ryan. This also reminds me of the story where two people draw the Enneagramm and the one with more knowledge sees that the other person has less knowledge by the way he drew it. What i mean with that is that these kind of rules are probably rarely to be taken as absolute but depending on one's own knowledge they can be applied with more nuance and context.

74. If you are hesitating between doing and not doing, take the risk of doing.
This is a very good rule for me to remember. I recall a discussion on this forum at some point on the ideas of doing and nondoing, I what I took away from it was that inaction can be a great sin against existence. Of course, I don’t think this means acting impulsively but rather not letting the fear of “what ifs” stop us from doing something.
I’m rereading Meetings With Remarkable Men right now and it seems like G’s decision to DO led to him learning many of the things that influenced his teachings.

A few days ago i had a situation where i needed to decide between doing and not-doing and decided to not-do. And it was exactly those "what ifs" that you describe @Jo Bugman that prevented me from doing. My mother and i were visiting my uncle and aunt who live in another country and whom we haven't seen since 5 years. I can also not remember when i have seen them before that. So i don't really know them well. Now my uncle has a sever gambling addiction which caused allot, and i mean ALLOT of trouble for his family. Like gambling away his last penny and his house forcing them to live on the street for a short period of time (this was a backroom gambling with very shady characters). Long story short, the reason we visited them was so my mother could talk to him (they are brother and sister) and try to open his eyes. But she didn't say anything (she had no idea how and what to say) and tried to persuade me into talking to him instead because she says that i'm more of a calm character and can listen to people. I tried searching the forum for hints and advices (i started reading the "Love and Addiction", by S. Peele and A. Brodsky" thread) but this was way too much to be able to make a decision in a day in a topic that i don't understand. To bring this story to an end, i decided to not-do or not-say anything because one of the "what ifs" was that i couldn't estimate how my words would affect him and by extension his family. It could have backfired extremely on them (he at one point had thrown both my aunt and their daughter out of the house when my aunt tried to talk to him). I don't have enough knowledge nor the talking skills to be confident enough for that.
Sorry if my post went a bit overboard but i tried to show an example for why i think that these rules need knowledge and context to be able to apply them properly.

EDIT: In that sense i broke rule 22 😅
22. Do not speak of your personal problems.
 

BlueKiwi

Jedi Master
37. Conquer your fears, for each of them represents a camouflaged desire.

I find this one interesting.

I think Gurdjieff might be talking about how we need to confront fears embedded in our subconscious.

Camouflaged being "on a deeper level" embedded in you subconscious, possibly from previous lives.

On a deeper level you might desire to conquer a fear (or balance your understanding of it) but are reluctant because of the work required to address it ?
 

T.C.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Well, "networking" is a relatively recent/modern term, and we certainly use the idea in an expanded way, but I think the same essential concept is absolutely present in G's Work. Note his descriptions of the "circles" of humanity, his definition of exoteric, mesoteric and esoteric groups, his ideas of "preparatory groups", his emphasis on "putting someone on the step behind you" in order to advance, his and his students' escape from the Bolshevik revolution, his creation of the Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man, his business deals to support his Work, his group meetings during the Nazi occupation of France, his later voyages to and from America, setting up communities there... the list goes on. I think networking was not only deeply integrated into Fourth Way philosophy, but very much lived knowledge by Gurdjieff and his students, even if they didn't have quite the same expanded understanding of the principle that we have, thanks to the C's.

When I said that when I think of G.'s work, I can't see anything about networking, I meant in what he taught, not in what he did. I suppose I was looking at 'networking' in a very restricted way. He did always say that Work without a group was impossible. So what does that demonstrate other than the importance of a network.
 

AndrewMn

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Thank you so much @Ryan for this selection! Very useful material indeed.
25. Do not follow fashions.
Oh yes, it's definitely close to my heart. I don't even have to make the effort. :rotfl:

55. Never contradict; instead, be silent.
But here I have a lot more work to do on myself! And not only on this point, but on a number of others! There's a lot to study carefully.

82. If you are meditating and a devil appears, make the devil meditate too.
This is fun. :lol2:

Thanks again for sharing this. :thup:
 
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