Book Review: "Views from the Real World: Early Talks of Gurdjieff as Recollected by his Pupils"

This book was a special recommendation from someone I respect.

Gurdjieff was a man who “disappeared” for a long period of his early life to wander the East with a definite purpose through many places inaccessible to Europeans, meeting remarkable people along the way, reading ancient texts, and studying hundreds of religions.

When he reemerged, he prepared presentations that he hoped would influence the Western world.

Gurdjieff was virtually unknown throughout his lifetime, 1866 through 1949, yet his work continues to gain prominence.

He held a very close following of pupils whom he did not allow to take notes during his speeches, but afterwards they were able to assemble everything on memory into books published after his death.

Gurdjieff taught that most people live their lives in a state of hypnotic “waking sleep,” and that it is possible to transcend to a higher state of consciousness and achieve full human potential.

The main thing I gained from this book is the importance of self-awareness, and it prompted me to spend most of my month focusing on ways to improve my attention to details of my surroundings.