Chapter 25: Zen: A Contagious Blissfulness
If you have never been drinking, he will force you to drink so much that you are bound to start doing things you could have never conceived - but they were inside you. And before he can accept you as his disciple, he wants to know you from your very roots, because from there will begin the work of transformation.
Now, naturally people like Durkheim and almost the whole world of so-called religious people were against Gurdjieff. His methods were strange, but he transformed more people than all the so-called religions, organized churches, psychologies. A single man has done an immense service, and without using the name of Zen. What he was doing was Zen, but it was his way of doing it.
Certainly Bodhidharma will not agree, neither will Buddha agree; but they will not disagree either. They will not agree with his methods, but they will agree with the man. The man was certainly crystallized - the ultimate peak a man can reach. Now, what path he has followed you may not agree with, but he has reached - that you have to concede.
I am not in agreement on many things with George Gurdjieff - or with anybody else - but that does not mean that I don’t recognize that there have been Himalayan peaks of consciousness. They followed a certain path which does not agree with me. I will condemn that path and I will condemn that method, but I will respect the man. That creates in many people’s minds contradiction.
That’s what happened to Durkheim. He had heard the words, beautiful words of Zen masters, but he had not seen a single unique Zen master like Bodhidharma or like Mahakashyapa. And if he could not recognize George Gurdjieff’s realization, naturally he would deny me and warn you not to be with me - because Gurdjieff was using very crude methods: forcing meat or alcohol, drugs on people. I am also destroying your conditioning but in a far more refined way.
Have you heard the Zen story.. There was a competition of swordsmanship. And swordsmanship in Japan is a very refined art. From different provinces, three competitors had come to the final. Even the emperor was present. He himself released a fly from a small box and the first swordsman immediately cut it into two.
He released another fly and the second swordsman cut it into three. He released the third fly and nothing happened, the fly simply went away. The swordsman moved his sword, but nothing happened. People laughed - just as you laughed. But you will have to laugh again, because the man said, “These people and you are laughing, but that fly will not create any more children!”
Such a subtle operation.. I was that swordsman! I do my work. Durkheim cannot understand my work if he cannot understand Gurdjieff, whose work is very crude and primitive, but of course absolutely right. My work is very sophisticated. That’s why only very intelligent and sophisticated people, who can see what has happened to the fly, are my people. Those who have seen the first two warriors and think that they are great warriors don’t understand much. Certainly they know the technique, but their technique is very primitive, very visible.