… was recently spooked out of Somerville! The cult formerly known as “School”, currently called “The Study”, had a conveniently-located classroom in Union Square’s, The Green Room on Bow Street. But an “incident”, or “event” (pay attention to when Robert employs the nondescript word event), now has “The Study’s youngest class” on the go.
Thursday night’s class, for example, met at the Holiday Inn, in Brookline, 1200 Beacon St (the corner of Beacon and St Paul St.)
Over the years, “The Study” has often been forced to pull up roots and pull out its pat explanations about sudden venue changes. Like … “We’re going to experiment and meet at various locations. Secret esoteric schools of yore would often only reveal class-locations at the last minute. A student with ‘sufficient valuation’ would be on the ready, waiting for the phone call (this was, after all, pre-answering machines, let alone smartphones!) Those who missed this call, would lose out. In order to rate, one must ‘do whatever it takes!’ to seek out the class location. This is part in parcel with tradition, not odd at all.”
Like so many stories from “the study” this is true in part. The unmentioned Gurdjieff had an also-not-mentioned student: PD Ouspensky. He describes mysterious last-minute phone calls and scrambles, in search of the latest classroom, in his unmentioned book (cough) In Search of the Miraculous.
I’m fairly certain “the study”, formerly known as “school”, omitted Ouspensky and his book last Thursday night when explaining the latest move. During my tenure, “School” handed us a black-bound copy of something it simply called “The Black Book” and referred to its secret author as “a great teacher, who once [FILL IN BLANK]”, usually some teacher would take on a lofty tone and precede such a pronouncement with the phrase, “It has been said …”. After departing I discovered that “The Black Book” was a redacted and Xeroxed copy of In Search of the Miraculous. Needless to say, I was furious.
I have a feeling “the study” also neglected to mention the number of sudden migrations it has been forced to make over the years. It will tell “students” the move is “… for your own safety.” As opposed to a “random psychotic person, akin to Charles Manson” who “hangs out in Union Square” freaking out “students,” these migrations are usually triggered by “evil and disgruntled ex-group members”, trying to warn current attendees that the “5-week experiment” is – in truth – a greedy and predatory cult; flyers suddenly appearing on cars and such, or sudden announcements by a fellow essence friend like — “I’m leaving; you should consider leaving, too” spur the cult into its next venue.
Over the course of my 5-year tenure, “school” migrated from the Belmont Lion’s Club, to various ugly hotel conference rooms, to The Griffin Photography Museum in Winchester and finally out to Boston’s satellite HQ in Billerica’s Faulkner Mills Building. In the seventies, San Francisco ran “the study” — then known as “The Theater of all Possibilities” — out of town, forcing it to migrate East. Click here to read newspaper articles about the “theater”.
But for now, folks …
The current “youngest class” meets every Monday and Thursday, 6:30-9 p.m. Nine “students” gather — a few of whom rotate through, without sharing “self observations” or doing the “assignments” — possibly because “The Study” floats them in so “classes” appear larger than they are.
The following “teachers” take charge: Michael still says, “Time for Tai Chi” and Paul still leads the indoctrinating flailing about known as “Body Work”. Lisa has been promoted to “teacher” status. She rotates her instruction with Josh, Michael and Robert.
5-Week AIMS morphed into 5-Week “commitments”.
“Sustainers” morphed into “the person I work with!”
The following “secret” (cough) ideas have been “taught”: multiplicity; mechanicality; the 7 centers, or “brains”; and the “many Is” living on the abandoned, chaotic grand estate with an absent Master; identification vs. non-identification/ I believe this idea might also be known as “familiarity”; expanding/contracting events (cough); self-love (horrors) vs. emotional love; self-remembering, memory, false memories …
… it sounds like “teachers” are starting down the path towards “valuation” via memory — “the study” connects your ability for memory directly to your capacity for love. Those whose memories are detailed and sharp, have a greater capacity for love than those who struggle to remember things, especially “secret esoteric ideas”, accordingly. By the way, this “lesson” is a very effective indoctrination and control tool; “school” can always attack your character via your “lack of memory”.
(for more on these “secret ideas” and this “oral teaching”, visit this link: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=gurdjieff+books )
In case you’re confused about whether this group is the one you’re dealing with, see if you recognize recruitment tactics: recruiters typically strike up a conversation, often claiming to be working on a project, like writing a book, and wanting to talk to YOU! They’ll end a seemingly random encounter with “It’s been great talking to you. We should get together sometime.” You exchange numbers; they “pursue a new friendship” — if you get together with them, you’ll notice the original project won’t resurface. They will, instead, invite you to join some kind of special group — “Would you’d like to join a book club?”.
Please see cult recruitment for more details.
The Privacy (cough) Secrecy “Rules” remain the same:
- No Internet-research about the group, class or assignments “… there’s a lot of bad information out there, we don’t want it to poison what you learn.”
(Congratulations for breaking this rule)
- No discussion about the group or its teachings to people outside of the group, even your closest friends, even your spouse “… for your safety, because other people won’t understand and might have problems with it.”
- Non-Fraternization 1: don’t form personal relationships or divulge personal information with other “students”, at least for the first 5 weeks “… it’s very important to keep separate, for your safety! This is private, just for you!“
- Non-Fraternization 2: don’t acknowledge fellow “students” outside the classroom, float past, as though strangers “… again, for your own safety. Private, just for you!“
- Observe an hour of silence immediately after class “… it’s important to seal yourself off and process your new knowledge!”
- Self Sensing … a morning ritual of “self-remembering” to be practiced upon waking, before you get up: scan your body from head to toe; sense the bed beneath, the room, the house, the street, neighborhood, town, state, country, continent, world, planet … etc. etc. etc.
- Commit to attending all 9 classes and be. on. time.
Please know that these rules only protect you from accessing certain information, ” … before you are ready”, a.k.a. sufficiently indoctrinated. That’s why the study waits 5-8 weeks before hitting you up for the $350/month (at least) “tuition”. It will never tell you that your “5-week experiment” is meant to be a lifetime tenure.
“Break “The Rules”!