People are satisfied with mere words; they are rags. Sanai says, “It is unbelievable. How are you satisfied with mere rags?” You were made to work your way through this darkness of existence. This is a task to be done, this is a way of growth. To be here on the earth simply means that existence has given an opportunity to you to grow. This earth is a challenge. Accept the challenge, encounter life – don’t escape.
A few people escape in words, a few people escape into monasteries, a few people escape into politics, a few people escape into money; these are all escapes. A few become learned people, a few become rich, a few become very powerful in the world, a few become very respectable, moral and virtuous, but the real work is not done.
What is the real work? Sufis call only one thing real work, and that is self-remembrance. Gurdjieff also learned the word work from the Sufis. He used to call his teachings “the work.” He also learned the word zikr, self-remembering, from the Sufis. The work is to remember oneself. The only work worth doing is to remember oneself.
You were made for work:
a robe of honor awaits you.
How is it that you are satisfied
with mere rags?
How will you ever have riches
if you are idle sixty days a month?
This is a very strange expression, sixty days a month. It contains a great insight. The man who remembers himself has sixty days in one month: thirty are his inner, and thirty the outer. He lives in a double way. His life has not only one dimension, the horizontal; his life has two dimensions, the vertical is also there.
Thirty days he lives outside through the senses in the world. Thirty days he lives within himself in silence in his interior-most core. He has sixty days. This is a beautiful expression. The real rich life cannot be only horizontal, it cannot be linear, because the line cannot have any depth and the line cannot have any height either. The real life has to be both: horizontal and vertical. Then there is all that is needed.
You meet godliness outside, you meet godliness inside. You move between the outer godliness and the inner godliness – that movement is real richness. Wherever you go you find godliness. You open your eyes, and the tree…and godliness is the green in it and godliness is the gold in it and godliness is the red in it. And you close your eyes, and the pure consciousness, the silence…and godliness is the silence there. Godliness is in you and in the other. Life becomes multidimensional.
Once a man asked Emerson, “How old are you?”
Emerson was around sixty, but Emerson said, “I am three hundred and sixty years old.”