Re: Gurdjieff - San Francisco cult groups
Posted by: Keir ()
Date: May 20, 2010 09:12PM


The "self-remembering" exercise is a form of self-hypnosis.

There is also a phenomenon called "snapping" which is a biological and psychological reaction to cult mind control. The result is a natural high and sense of wonderment which the victim attributes to the teachings of the cult. "Wow! I feel better than I ever have before! This group is great!"

But a crash soon follows: depression, lassitude, difficulty with outside relationships just as you experienced with St. Elmo.

Once a cult deprogrammer - or anyone else for that manner - can get a "snapped" member thinking independently again, even if only for a few minutes, they can snap. There is an excellent book on the subject as follows:

Snapping: America's Epidemic of Sudden Personality Change
by Flo Conway, Jim Siegelman

The womanizing, alcoholism and waifs sound so familiar. That's what The Group in Sonoma is all about! Not to mention the MENTAL ILLNESS and RAMPANT PERSONALITY DISORDERS! Gross! Elitism - narcissism.

This is good info. I got to buy that book.

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: WTF ()
Date: December 19, 2010 12:55AM

SO grateful for this site....I have been out a few months now from one of the NY groups. I had been thinking of leaving the for quite some time but hung around a little longer to see who I could get to come with me. I watched Gans, Koch and Mindel and the rest of the vampires from a different perspective after reading this website,, and What Freaks. It was great walking in there knowing what I knew about them all. Not only had I lost ALL respect for them I saw them for the sad and treacherous beings they really are. Scared, manipulative and predatory devils.....No wonder Fred and Greg cant sit still in front of the class ...twitching and jerking all the criminals.......

Like most of the student/victims I had such high hopes that this was an authentic group and a real school. What a disappointment....and I am embarrassed that I let these soul thieves toy with me for as long as they did. I sure hope I can control myself when I see one of the soul thieves on the street......I know that there are a lot of good people looking for a real teacher and a real way sitting in those rooms. I am going to "make it my aim" :) to let as many of the members OF GANS' FAKE SCHOOL know the truth; That


Only vampires with their clever little ploy of "the Work" as bait, waiting to sink their fangs into the bloodstream of those who are trying to better themselves and the world. Note to Gans and her Dementos: you have "students" in those rooms that you cannot control :) . YOUR WORST NIGHTMARE ----
I know this because me and many other ex-victims of your disgusting scam are talking to them everyday. They tell us what is happening and giving us all the information we desire. They read the websites mentioned above and are staying as I did, as long as they can to get other victims out. You may have to leave town soon.... I hear the weather in Montana's not all bad..3rd line might be a little tougher out there.....

Happy to say a few came with me already and many more are on their way out.

Any ex-student victims should make some effort to get these websites to any friends left in that cesspool. Phone calls are sometimes useful as well.

Thank You to all who contributed here..

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: mytruevoice ()
Date: December 23, 2010 11:37AM

Hats off to the previous poster for talking so much with the students still stuck in this fake School! The students left behind in the Boston and New York groups may appear loyal because they show up for class twice week, but I'm sure they have their doubts, too. The more they talk and question and speculate among themselves about whether it's a cult or not, the more likely current students will start to see through the sham. The doubts and questioning just needs to percolate a bit.

There's plenty of material to question, for instance: When I was still in School, I wondered why we needed to meet twice a week, every week, without fail, excect for the occasional holiday break. We were told this was so the work wouldn't grow cold. Now that I'm out I wonder if the real reason is that Sharon and Robert want to keep us students occupied so we couldn't develop any outside interests. Do you really get enough new material in every class to justify twice a week, every week of your time? When I was new the ideas seemed fresh and exciting, but how many times can you read the same text books and have the same conversations, over and over again? Is it really necessary to for classes to run past midnight every class, after class, after class?

Do the teachers seem like bullies sometimes? Why do they act that way? Is this how an enlightened being might act? Maybe they're really not enlightened? Would you like to be more like them? Really? I didn't think the teachers were very happy individuals. What do you think? Do they look happier these days?

Why is there such an emphasis on bringing new students? Why don't they call third line of work "Recruiting"? That is what's really going on, why don't they call a spade a spade? Why would they want to decieve you as to the true nature of this work?

And what's with all the School rules and secrecy, anyway? If you're reading this post, you probably know this group has a lot they want to keep from you. Even if most of what you read on the web is truely the lies and slander they claim it is, don't you think there might be some kernels of truth to it? Why are so many former students so vocal in their criticism of School? Why aren't more students writing about what a positive experience they had?

Ask your friends in School these questions, maybe you can figure it out eventually.

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: January 01, 2011 11:49PM

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: February 27, 2011 10:19PM

My hunch and it is personal opinion, is that Gurdjieff was a highly gifted hypnotist, had learned ways to induce trance through covert means, and his expertise was far in advance of those practicing medical hypnosis at that time.

He probably learned that inducing confusion by every possible means and by making himself and his own story a massive tangle of contradictions was a way to induce trance, and by making his story and personality confusing and at the same time a center of attention, he could induce people to live in trance for years at a time, even for lifetimes.

His ability to suss out peoples inner lives may have been accomplished by a classic method: identify local conditions, identify important persons interested in spiritual quest, identify basic ideas that were fashionable, gather intelligence on spiritual authors and journalists such as Ouspensky who had published books and articles and gave lectures, then present himself in exactly the way that matched their expectations--easy to do if one is clever and studies a persons novel and articles before arranging an interview.

And...always ensure the encounter is simultaneously enticing and confusing.

Muttering and having a strange unplaceable accent as Gurdjieff often had, is actually a a skillful way to get people to pay focused attention--a method later discovered and used by practitioners of NLP.

The confusing terminology invented by Gurdjieff was also an effective way to induce confusion by loading the circuits.

A most interesting method to de mystify Gurdjieff would be to search this message board for posts written by The Anticult and Walter1963 and look for The Anticults analyses of nested loops and story telling.

Oupsenksy may have been on to something--partly--when he said in despair at the end of his life that there was no Fourth Way 'system'.

But what Ouspensky may have failed to pick up on was that the ideas, the notions about ray of creation, magnetic center, man one through seven, Sarmoun, the Yezdis, were not the point.

The so called system was packing material, something to occupy people's attention, while the confusion and erratic behavior of the teacher was inducing trance.

And if the students were living in trance, that may well account for why each person described Gurdjieff in different ways and why it was seemingly impossible to get a fix on him.

Gurdjieff may well have anticipated many methods later identified and refined by Milton H Erikson.

If one ignores the wild ideas and studies Gurdjieff in his career as a master technician of covert trance induction, rather than as a magus or wisdom figure--this may be the way to pin the Sly Man down, once and for all.

Unlike Milton H Erickson MD, Gurdjieff was a highly needy person and not restrained by kindness or ethics.

He was a technician of sophisticated methods of trance, who concealed what he was doing behind a facade of 'system'.

Even persons who avoided becoming members of his human zoo, may have been slightly bitten by Gurdjieff's trance induction, while making sure to stay well away from him. Gurdjieff supposedly snickered that people could be poisoned by his ideas while never becoming his students.

And..(a matter for speculation but one I am willing to follow) perhaps the reason Gurdjieff refused to spend much time with Aleister Crowley and rejected Crowley, was perhaps a well placed fear that Crowley would twig immediately that Gurdjieff was not a wisdom figure but a covert hypnotist.

It is possible that no one matched or exceeded Gurdjieff's proficiency as a technician of advanced methods of hypnosis until Milton H Erickson MD--and Erickson, unlike Gurdjieff, wanted his methods to be used responsibly, with an ethos of care, and would have bitterly regretted seeing his methods appropriated by persons who care more for power than for kindness.

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: john_lpool ()
Date: April 03, 2011 06:53AM

My father has been involved with Gurdjieff groups for many years so I am aware of much of the free labour he has given. I am also aware of his struggle with the intellectual nature of the work as he is not an intellectual. I do believe he has been exploited for his skilled labour. His stories of the retreats he has attended confirm to me that he has suffered abuse in the guise of attempts to "wake him up" by making him feel stupid. I was suspicious of how he sais the teachers are such good actors that they can appear to be drunk (!?). I have heard many of the stories relating to the attempts by Gurdjieff to make his students wake up. I was interested enough to attend a European weekend conference (All and Everything) at which one of the lectures was about hypnotism ( by an American therapist) which was the only one I found interesting as the thought did cross my mind that the attendees were indeed under the power of something or someone. One attendee claimed to be the brother of Gurdjieff so there was plenty of self delusion on display. These people were following something that made no sense and yet were mostly highly intellectual and successful people. I joined in most of the activities including close scrutiny of chosen passages from Beelzebubs tales to his grandson. When it was my turn to give my thoughts I simply said I thought Gurdjieff gave instructions at the start of the book not to analyse it. I did get an impression of the man after watching some movie clips of him and could only imagine that he was trying to make his students wake up by writing so much nonsense that when they realised it was nonsense it would snap them out of their intellectualism. I really think the book is one of his practical jokes!

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: john_lpool ()
Date: April 03, 2011 10:25PM

Apologies for an inaccuracy of my previous post. The attendee claimed to be the nephew of Gurdjieff ( not the brother). This was disputed by other attendees. Whether it was true or not it was certainly a cause of great friction to the hierarchy of the group, ie who had seniority. All grist to the mill I suppose.

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: Stoic ()
Date: April 04, 2011 08:40PM

'I really think the book is one of his practical jokes!'

That's a really telling remark.
I think that what happens with a lot of these jokers is that when they see how absurdly easy it is to take a percentage of people in they become intrigued and 'push the envelope' to see how far they can take the absurdity.

The difference of course is that the people taken in are seriously in search of something while the jokers, the Crowley's and Gurdjieff's and all their wannabees are just profoundly bored with life and seeking the thrill of domination for its own sake.

Its only a practical joke if you see through it--show the slightest sign of belief or wobble in any way and they will ruthlessly take you for a ride.

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: April 04, 2011 09:39PM

Reading Beelzebub's Tales would also be a good way to induce confusion--which in turn would induce or maintain an already existing trance state.

Gurdjieff reportedly practiced early forms of medical hypnosis while still in Russia, treating people for alcoholism and experimenting on them.

Gurdjieff told stories about himself and about others. Many stories about himself were
resistant to fact checking. He created neologisms--new words that were confusing to the ear---and many described him as having an unplaceable accent.

The Anticult has told us that this technique of acting 'crazy like a fox' is highly effective.

These days the technology of trance induction have become yet more sophisticated (look up what our member The Anticult has written about nested loops, handshake induction, and TAC's analyses of Byron Katie's washing machine story.

(to search, go to the upper right button on this message board, put all dates into the key words search option, and put the words in boldface into each search run and you will get material.

For further information, put Walter1963 into the author slot and all dates. Walter will give info about the background of NLP

Finally for fun, do a google search. Put enneagram and NLP together. Or enneagram and trance together and see how many citations come up.

Then do Gurdjieff or Fourth Way and NLP or trance and see what you get.

I remain convinced that Gurdjieff had no 'system'. His material was simply a way to lure people in who were of the type he wanted--well placed, interested in Theosophy, lookng for a guru and, after the chaos of World War I, looking for a daddy figure who could give them structure and hope.

But in my opinion, after having studied this for many years as a social movement, I am convinced the Fourth Way material was merely packing material for concealed methods of trance induction and that some could stay in trance for years, not even knowing it.

And this is the hazard when someone tells you, 'You have not experienced it. You cant just stand there as an outsider and say these things.'

If you do go inside and experience it, and this Gurdjieff stuff actually is covert trance induction, you may by going inside and experiencing it, lose your capacity for objectivity--and that will suit them just fine..just fine.

Study it as a social movement. Gurdjieff fathered a number of illegitimate children. That was very heavy for the children themselves, given the attitude toward unwed mothers and their children in the 1930s. Its a heedless cruelty.

Too many teachers of Fourth Way have been rogues and mavericks and it is my considered opinion that any teacher who spawns so very many abusive spin offs, whether 'orthodox' or 'rogue' is not worth following.

Sharon Gans

and Alex Horn


Robert Burton Fellowship of Friends/Oregon House/Apollo/The Ark


and Radnonazzo-New American Wing


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/10/2017 08:22PM by rrmoderator.

Re: Gurdjieff a fraud and worse
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: November 01, 2011 12:33AM

When people met him in Russia, they described Gurdjieff has having a strange accent or that his conversation was difficult to understand.

Id had my hunches that Gurdjieff, one hundred years ago, must have learned some effective methods of conversational trance induction.

Here are observations by one our members, The Anticult, concerning a different teacher. TAC's insights and analyses, in my opinion, apply just as much to Gurdjieff and expose him as a skilled trance technician, and social manipulator.


Its not the hypnosis that is the problem, but the verbal and visual messages in the hypnosis sessions, and the Suggestions that are being implanted with repetition.

Will look into this more.

But read the Byron Katie thread right below this, it goes into great detail about how modern group hypnosis and suggestion work.
They can get away with doing this, as they can just tell the judge they are "just talking" or just "having a conversation".



is absolutely using forms of modern "conversational hypnosis".
He is speaking in that strange cadence intentionally, as it puts people off-balance. Yes, it drives most people away, but he doesn't care, as he is only looking for his target market.



He is also obviously using a piece of audio software to alter his voice, to slow down the speed, and lower the pitch a little. (he probably finds it very amusing, as it sounds a little like John Wayne).

He is clearly doing this to disguise his voice, as well as to attempt to induce Trance, by using weird voice patterning.
Also, various New Age channeling cults have used strange voices, going back to Seth.
Its a cheap trick, and this scammer Gary, is using technology for the same effect.



He recorded this material on a TASCAM DR-1 audio recorder. []
And he has made over 100 recordings on this, as this is all saved a meta-data on the files.

He recorded it at a low kHz rate, which apparently results in some distortion and a slowing of the voice.
That can also easily be done with free software.
Whether he did that on purpose, or originally by accident, its meant to create an effect.

Here is descriptions of Gurdjieff's voice

The unknowable GurdjieffChez Gurdjieff, Paris June, 1948 In spite of all I had been told, ... His low
voice and muffled Asiatic accent formed syllables that had no meaning to me
, ...

Gurdjieff: an introduction to his life and ideas...

He came in without a trace of embarrassment, greeting the Prince in Turkish with an accent that was a strange mixture of cultured Os- nianli and some ... I discovered that Gurdjieff had the peculiar property of appearing to be


In her book "Undiscovered Country", Kathryn Hulme (a disciple of Gurdjieff) writes: "In the opening chapters when Ouspensky described his initial encounters and conversations with the master, it seemed as if I were hearing Gurdjieff talk again, minus his accent and abbreviated locutions..


James Webb

"According to Glimpses of Truth an early essay by several pupils whose writing was supervised by Gurdjieff--A night long conversation takes place between Gurdjieff and a visitor. "At the beginning of the talk" says Webb "Gurdjieff speaks haltingly, in poor Russian, often turning to A (the interpreter) for hte completion of a sentence or thought. But as the conversation becomes increasingly rarified, Gurdjieff is presented (in the essay) as relying on A less and less. According to Glimpses "His speech flowed more freely and naturally, the necessary words seemed to come of themselves, and I could have sworn by the end of the converastion he was speaking the clearest, most unaccented Russian"..

Later, Webb notes, "The gradual perfection of Gurdjieff's Russian could mean one of several things, but it was a phenomenon also noticed by pupils who spoke French or English." (The Harmonious Circle, James Webb, 1980, page 89)

Earlier, Webb tells us clearly that Gurdjieff made a point of studying trance induction. On page 78 of The Harmonious Circle, Webb tells us "Like some of his European contemporaries, Freud and Jung among them, he was trying to use hypnosis to break through man's "normal waking consciousness" to the subconsious mind, "which ought in my opinion" Gurdjieff wrote, "to be the real human consciousness."

(Corboy note: The reader is invited to remember the disasters that took place in the 1960s and 1970s when strenuous efforts were made to liberate people's subconscious minds.)

Later, Webb tells us this, and he is working from Gurdjieff's own writings.


"According to Beelzebub (Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson), (Gurdjieff) chose to adopt the disguise of a "healer" in order to further his psychological researches. He had observed that people spoke frankly only to doctors and priests, and he had no desire to restrict his liberty by impersonating a holy man. Although he joined the medical profession in a spirit of experiment, he aquired considerable skill at his new calling. In Chinese Turkestan, the chief disabilities that came within his province were opium addiction and the chewing of hashish. When in about 1910-11 he transferred his activities to Russian Turkestan, he concentrated on the equivalent Russian vice: addiction to vodka...Gurdjieff's skill as a hypnotist was to stand him in good stead when he was forced to earn money in the West and it was probably in Turkestan that he aquired his knowledge of the effect of drugs on human beings. His later use of alcohol is well known, and the nature and composition of opium remained one of his interests right up to the time when he was writing Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson."

Webb, The Harmonious Circle, pp 79-80.

There is an imbalance of power here--Gurdjieff is pretending to be a healer, so as to observe human beings, while impersonating a role meant to encourage human beings to disclose themselves without disguise to him.

This is a relationship based on manipulation and deceit. If anyone was healed of their addiction, they were fortunate, for it took place in the context of a relationship in which the patient was honest but the alleged healer was acting in disguise, merely to snoop and manipulate.

Open heartedness is not mutual here, for Gudjieff, unlike his trustful patients was hiding behind a role--and this was at the start of his career.

It looks as though he was very astute in his use of conversational trance induction and long before Milton Erickson.

It is worrisome in the extreme that if one puts enneagram and neurolinguistic programming into the same search, a multitude of citations churn up.

It is to be feared that Gurdjieff may have inspired the careers and aspirations of persons eager to become adept at trance induction and who didnt want to be bound by any sort of moral restraint.

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