Classical Spirituality in Contemporary America: The Confluence and Contribution of G.I. Gurdjieff and Sufism by Michael S. PittmanClassical Spirituality in Contemporary America: The Confluence and Contribution of G.I. Gurdjieff and Sufism by Michael S. Pittman

Classical Spirituality in Contemporary America: The Confluence and Contribution of G.I. Gurdjieff…

byMichael S. Pittman

Paperback | January 9, 2014

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G.I. Gurdjieff (d. 1949) remains an important, if controversial, figure in early 20th-century Western Esoteric thought. Born in the culturally diverse region of the Caucasus, Gurdjieff traveled in Asia, Africa, and elsewhere in search of practical spiritual knowledge. Though oftentimes allusive, references to Sufi teachings and characters take a prominent position in Gurdjieff's work and writings. Since his death, a discourse on Gurdjieff and Sufism has developed through the contributions as well as critiques of his students and interlocutors. J.G. Bennett began an experimental 'Fourth Way' school in England in the 1970s which included the introduction of Sufi practices and teachings. In America this discourse has further expanded through the collaboration and engagement of contemporary Sufi teachers. This work does not simply demonstrate the influence of Gurdjieff and his ideas, but approaches the specific discourse on and about Gurdjieff and Sufism in the context of contemporary religious and spiritual teachings, particularly in the United States, and highlights some of the adaptive, boundary-crossing, and hybrid features that have led to the continuing influence of Sufism.
Michael S. Pittman is Associate Professor of Humanities and World Religions at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, USA.
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Title:Classical Spirituality in Contemporary America: The Confluence and Contribution of G.I. Gurdjieff…Format:PaperbackProduct dimensions:256 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inShipping dimensions:9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:January 9, 2014Publisher:BloomsburyLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1472522931

ISBN - 13:9781472522931

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction 1. Gurdjieff and Sufism: The Creation of a Discourse 2. Gurdjieff's Discourse on the Soul: Beelzebub's Tales and Sufism 3. J.G. Bennett and the Gospel of Gurdjieff and Sufism 4. Gurdjieff, American Style: Sherborne House and Claymont Court 5. Gurdjieff and the Continuing Influence of Sufism in America Notes Bibliography Index

Editorial Reviews

Perhaps no one writing on Gurdjieff at the present time is better equipped than Michael Pittman, whose comprehensive grasp of Armenian, Turkish and Arabic cultures and languages gives him a valuable perspective on the extent to which Sufism has informed the deep and surface structures of Gurdjieff's major writing and,consequently, on the growth of an extensive Sufi following in the United States that is traceable to the influence of Gurdjieff's writing. In adopting an objective view of Gurdjieff's exposition of ideas in his major works, All and Everything and Meetings with Remarkable Men, Pittman carefully avoids the controversy over aspects of Gurdjieff's life and reputation. What he stays attentive to is the pertinence of Gurdjieff's work to universal human aspirations.