Main CategoriesTheosophy, Steiner and GurdjieffGurdjieff, Ouspensky and the Fourth Way Exchanges Within

Exchanges Within

Product no.: 1-58542-365-3
Selections from nearly thirty years of teachings by one of the principal students of Gurdjieff.

Product is in stock

Additional product information

Publisher's Synopsis
Exchanges Within concentrates on one main question: How do we find within ourselves what we have lost - our reality, wholeness, and significance - as the human kind of being in the universe?

Through the intensity of his own search, John Pentland radiated the help necessary for group members again and again to discover and try to express where they actually are in the process of understanding and in the movement toward "being." The "exchanges" in Exchanges Within provide a glimpse into the dynamics of a living teaching and reflect genuine efforts toward the discovery and practice of meaningful living in the face of forces that drain human life of the sacred.


"Most traditional ways of self-knowledge, whether psychological, philosophical or spiritual, emphasize the necessity of direct work with a teacher. This work entails an exchange of energies but also of ideas and observations. The energies are recorded only in the being of the student, but the observations, expressed through words, may be recorded on paper. Because esoteric traditions reserve a portion of their teachings only for initiates, any publication of hitherto sequestered records of such exchanges is a notable event.

This extraordinary book presents selections from several decades' worth of discussions conducted at group meetings between students and John Pentland, a leader of the Gurdjieff Work from the late 1940s until his death in 1984. The influential psycho-spiritual teachings introduced by G.I. Gurdjieff (1866-1949) emphasize 'self-observation' and 'self-remembering' engaged within a definite cosmology with the aim of self-transformation.

The myriad selections here have been chosen with care to allow the teachings to unfold within the unruly Q&A format, and to impress upon readers the extreme difficulty, yet real possibility, of seeing themselves as they truly are, as a necessary first step in transformation. 'The beginning of evolution of oneself is sincerity,' Pentland says.

Those who read these 'exchanges within' with attention and an open mind are bound to be moved by Pentland's own sincerity, and to benefit from his ability to solicit and to respond to the question behind the question. As a document of the dynamic search for truth among teacher and student, this work fascinates; as an adept extension in written form of that search, it can galvanize."      ~Publishers Weekly

"Lord Pentland: The motivation is to be whole. Any other motivation is subjective, egoistic. You follow? Motivation comes from nothing because I have no consciousness. So the motivation is to have at least some consciousness or to keep this experience of nothing-consciousness while functioning. There is no other motivation. I wish to be whole because that is the next level. Working that way I can serve as if on the level that corresponds to my wholeness. The serving is by the functions and nothing-consciousness is the consciousness. The whole work is there. A good starting point. You understand what I said?"

Author Pentland, John
Book Type Trade Paperback
Page Count 372 pp.
Publisher Penguin/Tarcher 2004
Browse these categories as well: Gurdjieff, Ouspensky and the Fourth Way, Western Mystery Schools, Noteworthy Releases 2004

We also recommend

Waking Up