Chapter 7: Beyond the Error of Experiencing
Gurdjieff used to tell his disciples, “The first thing is, to become non-identified and to remember continuously that you are a witness, just a consciousness, neither an act nor a thought.” If this remembrance becomes a crystallized phenomenon in you, you have attained to vivek, discrimination; then spontaneously follows vairagya. If you don’t become discriminating, spontaneously follows samsara, the world; if you become identified with the body and the mind, you move out - you go into the world, you are expelled from the Garden of Eden. If you discriminate, and you remember that you are in the body and the body is an abode and you are the owner; and the mind is just a biocomputer, you are the master and the mind is just a slave - then, a turning in. Then you are not moving into the world, because the first step has been removed. Now you are no longer bridged with the world, suddenly you start falling in. This is what vairagya is, renunciation.
And when you go on falling in and in and in, and there comes the last point beyond which there is no go, the summum bonum, it is called kaivalya: you have become alone. You don’t need anybody. You don’t need the constant effort of filling yourself with something or other. Now you are in tune with your emptiness, and because of your tuning in with the emptiness, the very emptiness has become a fullness, an infinity, a fulfillment, a fruition of being.
This purush is there in the beginning, this purush is there in the end, and between the two is just a big dream.
The first sutra:
Experience is the result of the inability to differentiate
between purush, pure consciousness, and sattva, pure intelligence,
although they are absolutely distinct.
Performing samyama on the self-interest
brings knowledge of the purush
separated from the knowledge of others.
Each word has to be understood because each word is tremendously significant.
Experience is the result of the inability to differentiate. All experience is just an error. You say, “I am miserable,” or you say, “I am happy,” or you say, “I am feeling hungry,” or you say, “I am feeling very good and healthy” - all experience is an error, is a misunderstanding.
When you say, “I am hungry,” what do you really mean? You should say, “I am conscious that the body is hungry.” You should not say, “I am hungry.” You are not hungry; he body is hungry, you are the knower of the fact. The experience is not yours, only the awareness; the experience is of the body, the awareness is yours. When you feel miserable, again, the experience may be of the body or of the mind - which are not two.
Body and mind are one mechanism. The body is the gross mechanism of the same entity; the mind is the subtle mechanism. But both are the same. It is not good to say “body and mind”; we should say “bodymind.” The body is nothing but mind in a gross way, and if you watch your body you will see that the body also functions as a mind. You are fast asleep, and a fly comes and hangs around your face, you remove it with your hand without in any way getting up or waking up. The body functioned, very mindfully. Or something starts crawling on your feet; you throw it away, fast asleep, you will not remember in the morning. The body functions as a mind - very gross, but it functions as a mind.