The teaching of G. I. Gurdjieff presents a cosmic perspective of the universe. From this perspective, human beings are intended to maintain a conscious bridge between higher and lower levels of creation — as the great traditions put it, between Heaven and Earth. To fulfill the Earth’s need for more conscious, intelligent stewardship, Gurdjieff explains in detail how sincerely dedicated men and women, working together and as individuals, can develop an energy capable of transforming themselves and our world.
The efforts and practices recommended by Gurdjieff to achieve this transformation are referred to as “the Work.” In Philadelphia, the Work includes studying and discussing the laws governing our Universe, engaging in creative activities, guided meditation, sacred dance exercises called “the Movements,” and practicing individual inner tasks to strengthen attention and will. Questions and observations are exchanged through sharing experiences in group meetings.
Underlying these activities is the principle, strictly enjoined by Gurdjieff, that nothing be taken on faith alone, that a new level of understanding can be achieved and become a person’s own, only by his or her own efforts, observations, and direct experiences.