Pierre Schaeffer

Gurdjieff International Review


The Old Man and the Children of the Age

by Pierre Schaeffer

Every Time I Lose Sight of Myself

I go on long journeys. I am away for months at a time. In Scandinavian hotels, and in Pacific towns, on floating airfields, in the middle of African market places or Aztec churches, I sit as I have been told to sit. I try to discover peace in myself, and, knowing only too well that it is useless to look for it in my head, I try humbly to find it in the tranquility of the body, through the relaxation of my muscles. I sometimes succeed, especially if I do the exercise daily.

But if I neglect it, even for a few days, on the grounds that my general condition doesn’t require it, or that my journeys, professional duties, social responsibilities or legitimate pleasures excuse it, then I go adrift at once. Meanwhile, they continue their meetings in Paris, that distant metropolis. They go on obstinately with the same thing when you would think they would be far better employed in some proved branch of instruction, or in going to Church. They had made me promise to force myself to “self-remember” for a quarter of an hour every day. I don’t often manage it.…

[The complete text is available in the printed copy of this issue.]
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