People Have Fallen Asleep
The “work” is a body of knowledge which exists outside the normal everyday routine. It isn’t being taught at school and you won’t find it at the University. It won’t help you get ahead in life or be a successful celebrity or have a shining personality. It exists because some people in ancient times realized that the masses of humanity, us as people, had fallen asleep in themselves. You can find this knowledge if you selectively read Sufi literature. Hazrat Inyat Khan discusses it. It can be found in Krishnamurti and is delineated as the 4th Way by Gurdjieff, Ouspensky, and also in the Commentaries by Nicoll. The higher forms of Yoga, such as Raja (King’s Yoga), are similar.
The Great Work
Previously to the last century it was called the Magnum Opus, which means Great Work. It has existed down through the ages in different forms. The “work” has always by tradition been spread word of mouth from master to disciple For instance, in early Egypt the Priest would initiate disciples into the “work” mysteries by certain ceremony.
This is not secret knowledge.
It actually is available to anyone. However, the forces which keep a person in the sleeping state, are inherent in every culture and society. The roll of the family unit is to inculcate their children to grow up to be good citizens. And as it takes a considerable amount of energy to break out of these forms, most people simply stay asleep and live and die without understanding themselves much less coming close to knowing reality.
What is sleeping?
Here’s a good metaphor. If you have a drawer, or a closet, garage or storage shed full of old stuff from who knows who and when, and you start to sort any of these spaces you’ll be tempted to look at the mementos over and over and have some difficulty sorting them out. You may never get it done and push it back. “Oh well,” that’s life you’ll say. “Let my kids, the next person, or whomever—let them sort it out.”
The “work” is to sort out your space. The space is your mind, which is considerably deeper, bigger, and disordered no matter who you are or how old you are. And everyone else, your family and friends, work and boss are like this too. The ilk and ill of every society is indecision. People can’t make up their minds. This stems from the internal disorganization of being attached to mental states like they were mementos in a drawer.
Wake Up or Sweet Dreams
When your psychology is organized there is the possibility of waking up. When you actually wake up you realize the person who constructed the mess you’re calling life is an unknown someone who goes by the same name as you. Until then . . . sweet dreams.
In the next blog we give a specific example of what is being awake.