A. L. Staveley

Gurdjieff International Review

Annie Lou Staveley


Mrs. Staveley lived in England for more than thirty years and was introduced to the Work by Jane Heap. In 1946, she traveled to Paris to study with Mr. Gurdjieff. She eventually moved to rural Oregon and started a community named Two Rivers Farm.

Annie Lou Staveley - by Toddy Smyth

In the 1930s, A. L. Staveley met P. D. Ouspensky in London. She then met Jane Heap with whom she studied the ideas of Gurdjieff. At the end of the Second World War, she went to Paris to work with Mr. Gurdjieff himself. Eventually, she moved to Aurora, Oregon where she established Two Rivers Farm for further study of Gurdjieff’s teaching.

Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson: Commentary by A. L. Staveley

This commentary was first published in 1993 as dust jacket notes for the Two Rivers Press facsimile reprinting of the English (1950) first edition of Beelzebub’s Tales and is reproduced with the kind permission of Two Rivers Press. Mrs. Staveley comments that “This Book is a guide to becoming a real man. Gurdjieff advised us to read, reread and then read this Book again many, many times. Read it aloud with others and read it to yourself. Even if you read it thirty, even fifty times, you will always find something you missed before—a sentence which gives with great precision the answer to a question you have had for years.”


This incisive essay by Mrs. Staveley was published in 1984 by Two Rivers Press and is reprinted here with their kind permission. It was read on March 21st at the funeral of Michael Smyth—the proprietor of Abintra Books, a long time student of Mrs. Staveley, and founding member of Two Rivers Farm—who died on March 18, 2001.

Jane Heap: As Remembered by Some of Those She Taught by A. L. Staveley

A. L. Staveley recalls vivid impressions of her work with Jane Heap in London during World War II which prepared her to meet G. I. Gurdjieff in 1946. This sketch was first published in Jane Heap: As Remembered by Some of Those She Taught by Two Rivers Press, 1988 in a limited edition and is reproduced here with their kind permission.

Again—The Work in Life

“What I do and the products and results of what I do are always in life—whether on the mountain top or in the market place it is all the same.”

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Revision: April 1, 2007