I am now here in America because...

Gurdjieff International Review

G. Gurdjieff Explains

A Letter to the Editor

The New York World, February 6, 1931

As the information published recently in various New York journals both about me personally and my activities, as well as about the reasons for my being now in America, is misleading and even impugns my objectively quite sincere, benevolent and grateful attitude toward Americans, an attitude which has been formed in me during the last seven years and of the significance of which everybody will, I am sure, be soon indubitably aware, I have decided to offer a brief explanation, through the medium of your esteemed columns, of the real reasons for my present visit to America. I take occasion at the same time to announce to all those seriously interested in my activities that without waiting for the completion of all the three series of my writings, which are the first I intend to publish and which are entitled An Objective Impartial Criticism of the Life of Man, or Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson, I have found it possible during my stay here to publish one of the chapters of the third book entitled "Beelzebub in America," and I have already given it to the printers.

This, I think, will not only help to put an end to the various fantastic rumors compromising my name but may also, perhaps, hasten the actualization of those good results for which, as every sane-thinking man will, on sincere reflection, clearly understand, I have written that chapter in an intentionally original form.

I am now here in America because since I began writing it has been my practice to travel from country to country chiefly in order to form on the spot from my own observations an opinion of the ordinary life and psyche of the people composing the particular group about which at the given time I am writing an objective criticism.

My present visit to America has been necessary chiefly because I am just now engaged in that chapter of the second series of my writings in which I find it necessary to include a narrative of mine concerning the history of the arising and existence of the "Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man," a narrative which I related seven years ago here in New York and which was then taken down in shorthand.

For its completion in all its details I did not consider it superfluous, owing to the aforesaid practice of mine, to return here to the place where the narrative was first related in order to revive by association in my memory even the smallest details therein referred to.


New York, Feb. 4, 1931

Copyright © 1931 G. I. Gurdjieff
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