We never reach the limits of our strength.

Gurdjieff International Review

Editorial Introduction

Special Issue on A. R. Orage

Dear Readers,

Did anyone notice our name change? Significant reader feedback has convinced us that the original name of our site, the Gurdjieff Home Page, is perhaps too colloquial and does not accurately depict what we present here. Our new name, the Gurdjieff International Review, was recommended by one of our readers—who wishes to remain anonymous. We thank him and believe the name suits us just fine. While on the subject of reader recommendations, we have also decided to provide printed copies of the website for what we believe is a reasonable fee.

We are very pleased to present this special issue on Alfred Richard Orage. Mr. Orage is certainly one of our favorites from within the pantheon of Gurdjieff's senior pupils. This issue has been fun and enormously instructive for us because—well, just because we have had to wade through so much literature by and about Orage, and it has been very inspirational. By far the most difficult part of the past three months has been deciding what to publish—there is so much quality material to choose from. We hope you enjoy what we have for you.

Our Orage material begins with a short biography and bibliography. There follows a wonderful essay by Gorham Munson, "Black Sheep Philosophers." Mr. Munson was a friend, literary colleague and member of Orage's group during his years in New York City. We wish to thank McIntosh & Otis, Inc. for granting us permission to publish this work.

J. Walter Driscoll has certainly provided a service in selecting and editing a collection of Orage's aphorisms and observations taken from many different sources—some published, some unpublished. This piece, "The Essence of Orage," certainly deserves some quiet time.

Orage was editor of the enormously influential journal the New Age from 1907 until 1922. Orage contributed many essays. We bring some of his best to you under the title "Readers and Writers."

We conclude with what is probably my favorite material of this issue, tributes and obituary letters published shortly after Orage's death taken from the literary journals New Democracy and the New English Weekly. These long lost treasures paint the picture of a man who is well worth study and emulation.

After reading and contemplating upon this material on Orage, I cannot help but reflect upon that short chapter in Beelzebub's Tales, "Becoming Aware of Genuine Being-Duty," where Hassein, with eyes full or sorrow, confides to his grandfather the following:

Things of which I have never before thought are now a-thinking in me.

Thanks to your talk, it has gradually become very clear to my consciousness that in the Universe of our ENDLESSNESS everything has not always been such as I now see and understand…

It seems that certain beings in the past have during very long periods labored and suffered very much for this, and endured a great deal which perhaps they even need not have endured.

They labored and suffered only in order that we might now have all this and use it for our welfare.

And all this they did, either consciously or unconsciously, just for us, that is to say, for beings quite unknown and entirely indifferent to them.

And now not only do we not thank them, but we do not even know a thing about them, but take it all as in the natural order, and neither ponder nor trouble ourselves about this question at all.

Greg Loy
This webpage © 1998 Gurdjieff Electronic Publishing
Featured: Spring 1998 Issue, Vol. I (3)