Chapter 2: Discovering Your Own Path
So now you will not come to hear me speak, now my emphasis is more and more on the seeker. One should be aware of one’s particularity, individuality. And once the right technique is known, one should work. And when there is flowering, when there is realization, then you will know that each technique leads to the same, it is basically the same - and of course in details, absolutely different.
Whatsoever technique is given to you, you will only find its validity through experience and through experimenting. And you will be fulfilled, you will be richer through experimenting. Just don’t go on thinking about it, otherwise thinking becomes a dead habit, it becomes an obsession. You think about this, then you think about that, then you will need something else to think about, then you will go on thinking about that. Each time you have thought about something you need another object to think about. This becomes obsessive.
With a seeker, this should not be so. So when Gurdjieff wrote a book, All and Everything - this is a one thousand page book - he left nine hundred pages uncut. Only a hundred pages of the introduction were opened. Nine hundred pages were unopened. And there was a note on his first edition to the reader: “Please go through the one hundred page introduction and if you think that you can do something, then cut open the other pages. Otherwise return the book and take your money back. Don’t open the other pages!”
There was another note in the first edition: “If you cannot read the one hundred open pages continuously, and become curious about opening other pages first, you are not a seeker and you will not be profited by the book. Don’t become curious. Start with the first hundred pages; don’t open the other pages. First read the introduction. Only then may you find the book of any help.”
Why? Mind is so curious. It is so curious it will not read the open pages, it will first want to read the unopened ones. It will be very arduous to go through a hundred pages. The mind will be working on those unopened pages, will be just going through how to reach those unopened pages. This is the attitude of the thinker. He is curious - hopping and jumping.
A seeker is not like that.
To end I will tell you a story about Bayazid, a Sufi saint - when he was at his guru’s school.
For twenty years Bayazid was coming and going to his guru for instruction. Twenty years continuously! And one day, the teacher said, “In the hall from where you are coming, there is a window. And in that window, there are some books. Bring me a book with this name here.”
Bayazid said, “I don’t know where the window is.”
The teacher said, “But you have been coming through that hall continuously for twenty years - every day. Don’t you know the window?”
Bayazid said, “I was coming to you. It was unnecessary to look here and there. I do not know. I will go and seek and search.”
The guru said, “The book is not needed. I was only asking this to see whether you are a seeker or a thinker. And I know that you are a seeker.”