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The Psychology of Man's Possible Evolution Paperback – November 12, 1973


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Frequently Bought Together

The Psychology of Man's Possible Evolution + The Fourth Way: An Arrangement by Subject of Verbatim Extracts from the Records of Ouspensky's Meetings in London and New York, 1921-46 + In Search of the Miraculous (Harvest Book)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; 2 edition (November 12, 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0394719433
  • ISBN-13: 978-0394719436
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 0.4 x 4.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,488 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Through a series of five lectures, the Russian philosopher whose writings include Tertium Organum and most recently In Search of the Miraculous (October 1, 1949- p. 567) considers the "forgotten science of psychology". Disregarding the study of man as he is or seems to be, with which the modern schools concern themselves, he turns to the study of man as he may be, what man's evolution means and the question of whether there are special conditions necessary to achieve it. The theory and linguistics presented here are far beyond the reach or inclination of this Freud-oriented reader. For followers and seekers. (Kirkus Reviews) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap

Studies man in view of what he may become. Describes how a man must work simultaneously on his knowledge and his being to find inner unity.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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This book changed my life.
Jessica VR
I would recommend it highly for anyone interested in starting "the work".
Tell_it_true
If you are on the fence about it - buy it.
freedom7777@yahoo.com

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 26, 2002
Format: Paperback
When you have had your first 'education' by the way of years of "ordinary" life; when you have been exposed to thousands of works of literature, art, science, religion--and these have created a hunger in you; at a certain point, you may be ready to receive a certain quality of knowledge. When you do, when you recognize its value and if you apply it to your daily life, you yourself can truly change. This book, in the hands of one who seeks, can be a key to the start of a path to a larger and richer world.
How well do you *really* know yourself? Are you willing to go digging? The world is waiting, and a man named Piotr Demianovich Ouspensky saw fit to help you know both it, and yourself, in ways you never guessed.
Yes, there are books that can truly change lives. This is one of them. Do not read if your aim is only to remain comfortable. I wish you the best on your Way.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 20, 1998
Format: Paperback
If you're new to Gurgjieffian thought, this is the book to start with. It gives a general overview of G.I. Gurdjieff and P.D. Ouspensky's main philosophical ideas. The book is in the form of five short lectures that each tackle a particular topic. The major emphasis of the book is that humans need to learn to stop being meachines and to acquire self-consciousness by self-sudy before any upward motion along the lines of knowledge and being can be accomplished. Contains very practical advice.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 18, 1998
Format: Paperback
A spare, terse distillation of the no-nonsense call to waking up in the manner of the 4th Way, which takes place not in the monastery, but in the ordinary conditions of life. Basically, Gurdjieff's transmission of esoteric understanding through Ouspensky's language.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By William Bagley on September 1, 2008
Format: Paperback
The "Fourth Way" is a term given by Gurdjieff for a special spiritual path to practiced in the world, in ordinary human society, which is not one of the three traditional ways of the fakir (yogi), monk (bhakti), or philosopher (jnana yoga), which roughly correspond to physical, emotional, and mental paths. According to these teachings, the Fourth Way is a path of energy and consciousness where a person can generate an evolutionary energy called "Do 48" through a meditation practice called "self remembering" more deliberately, rapidly, and efficiently than the other paths, which have to work harder to produce a small amount of this energy in a more indirect way. This book is based on a series of introductory lectures that Ouspensky gave in London and in other places. These lectures inspired many people in London to form a group there, many of them part of the "intelligensia" of the area, including Orage, Maurice Nicole, Kenneth Walker, and others. Many of the ideas of the Fourth Way did influence the formation of many branches of western psychology and even brain research. Gurdjieff taught, for instance, that humans were "three brained beings" and this idea became the basis of the research into the R-complex (reptilian brain), Limbic system (mammalian emotional brain), and cortex (intellectual human brain) of Restak and Macclain. Gurdjieff also made other scientific assertions that were later verified by western science. The Fourth Way is a variation of Sufi teaching that was related to the Sarmoun community. In Gurdjieff's own writings, he mentions several of his teachers. The books by Ouspensky, IN SEARCH OF THE MIRACULOUS and THE FOURTH WAY are a good systematic presentation of the teachings Gurdjieff left behind.Read more ›
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29 of 34 people found the following review helpful By ingrid888 on October 18, 2000
Format: Paperback
Some people have very negative opinions of Ouspensky and his books but for reasons that rarely have anything to do with the books themselves or the knowledge they contain. Usually they are associating everything with a bad experience they had in one cult or another that probably exploited all or some of the knowledge in books like the Psychology of Man's Possible Evolution, or, they're working from some uniquely conceived intellectual fetish like the 'Laws of Manu' and how their tradition is attempting to renew itself and strike terror into Democratic Man, or whatever... There's nothing about the Laws of Manu in this book by Ouspensky, nor is there anything having to do with cults or cult manipulation. The book itself explains very clearly the basic psychological side of what has come to be known as the Work, which is simply the universal ideas and practices of inner, spiritual development put into a very clear and precise and practical language. Aside from its unique terminology it is the inner meaning and goals of the New Testament, Stoic philosophy and some Buddhist literature (just to name a few examples from the full spectrum of universal influences...) This book doesn't contain the cosmological side of the Work which provide the metaphor and models for understanding the psychological side of the Work, but that can be found in Ouspensky's other major books the Fourth Way and In Search of the Miraculous. All these books require real effort in the area of study to learn the language that they contain as-well-as enough of a development in your life in the areas of physical activity, creative activity and the absorbtion of the lowest to the highest influences in the realms of art, philosophy, music, imaginative literature, history, religion and science.Read more ›
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