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Chapter 3: The Play

I can understand the old man’s trouble. He is a beautiful man, but thirty years of Gurdjieff work are a heavy load. Now at the age of eighty-two it seems very, very difficult to relax, it seems difficult to drop the work and be playful. It’s very natural, it can be understood.

Here I am not giving you any structure for development, because I am not concerned with development at all. Now, he says it is “opposed to the three-centered harmonious development of man.” I am not interested in developing man, I am simply interested in awakening man - and remember the difference - not in developing. There is no need for any harmonious development, there is only a need to be awakened.

You can go on sleeping and you can go on working on yourself. All work is sleep, it is a dream. You are dreaming to develop yourself; you are trying to pull yourself up by your shoelaces. But it is a dream, and people are very, very ready to get into new dreams because they are naturally fed-up with the old dreams, repetitive dreams - the wife, the husband, money, power. Then somebody comes and says, “What are you doing? Leave this to ordinary mortals. You are a spiritual being. Come, and I will tell you how to develop spiritually.” Naturally one is fed-up with the old games, finished with the old games - there comes a moment in everybody’s life when one can see that it is a vicious circle, one has been in it long enough to know its meaninglessness - then somebody comes and gives hope again.

This hope brings future again; imagination again starts working. You again start fantasizing - now spiritual growth. You are back again in the same rut.

I am not teaching any development. I am teaching you just to be awake. Just open your eyes. You are in the Garden of Eden - just open your eyes. I am not here to give you any other dream. If you want to dream, old dreams are perfectly good - and you are so much attuned with them, why change? Money will do, why a new dream of meditation? Old games are perfectly good. New games will give you a little trouble - you will have to turn and toss in your bed and then again settle, and then they will become old. Yes, the honeymoon will be there for a few days and then they will become old.

That’s why people go on changing from one guru to another guru, from one school to another school, from one religion to another religion. It doesn’t help, it is absolutely pointless; what is needed is not a new dream, not a new work, not a new desire, not a new ambition but an awakening.

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