Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson: Gurdjieff


Ten Books in Three Series

FIRST SERIES Three books under the title of Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson. An Objectively Impartial Criticism of the Life of Man.

SECOND SERIES Two books under the common title of Meetings with Remarkable Men.

THIRD SERIES Five books under the title of Life Is Real Only Then, When “I Am. “

All written according to entirely new principles of logical reasoning and directed toward the accomplishment of the following three fundamental tasks:

FIRST SERIES To destroy, mercilessly and without any compromise whatever, in the mentation and feelings of the reader, the beliefs and views, by centuries rooted in him, about everything existing in the world.

SECOND SERIES To acquaint the reader with the material required for a new creation and to prove the soundness and good quality of it.

THIRD SERIES To assist the arising, in the mentation and in the feelings of the reader, of a veritable, nonfantastic representation not of that illusory world which he now perceives, but of the world existing in reality.


(Written impromptu by the author on delivering this book, already prepared for publication, to the printer)

According to the numerous deductions and conclusions resulting from my research concerning the profit contemporary people can obtain from new impressions coming from what they read or hear, and also according to the thought of one of the sayings of popular wisdom I have just remembered, handed down to our days from very ancient times,

“Any prayer may be heard and granted by the Higher Powers only if it is uttered thrice:

First—for the welfare or the peace of the souls of one’s parents, Second—for the welfare of one’s neighbor, And only third—for oneself personally,” I find it necessary on the first page of this book, now ready for publication, to give the following advice “Read each of my written expositions thrice First—at least as you have already become mechanized to read all your contemporary books and newspapers,

Second—as if you were reading aloud to another person, And only third—try to fathom the gist of my writings Only then will you be able to count upon forming your own impartial judgment, proper to yourself alone, on my writings And only then can my hope be actualized that according to your understanding you will obtain the specific benefit for yourself which I anticipate, and which I wish for you with all my being.

Table of Contents

  1. The arousing of thought
  2. Introduction: Why Beelzebub was in our solar system
  3. The cause of the delay in the falling of the ship Karnak
  4. The law of falling
  5. The system of Archangel Hariton
  6. Perpetual motion
  7. Becoming aware of genuine being-duty
  8. The impudent brat Hassein, Beelzebub’s grandson, dares to call men “slugs”
  9. The cause of the genesis of the Moon
  10. Why “men” are not men
  11. A piquant trait of the peculiar psyche of contemporary man
  12. The first “growl”
  13. Why in man’s reason fantasy may be perceived as reality
  14. The beginnings of perspectives promising nothing very cheerful
  15. The first decent of Beelzebub upon the planet Earth
  16. The relative understanding of Time
  17. The Arch-absurd: According to the assertion of Beelzebub, our Sun neither lights or heats
  18. The Arch-preposterous
  19. Beelzebub’s tales about his second descent on to the planet Earth
  20. The third flight of Beelzebub to the planet Earth
  21. The first visit of Beelzebub to India
  22. Beelzebub for the first time in Tibet
  23. The fourth personal sojourn of Beelzebub on the planet Earth
  24. Beelzebub’s flight to the planet Earth for the fifth time
  25. The Very Saintly Ashiata Shiemash, sent from Above to the Earth
  26. The Legominism concerning the deliberations of the Very Saintly Ashiata Shiemash under the title of “The Terror of the Situation”
  27. The organization for man’s existence created by the Very Saintly Ashiata Shiemash
  28. The chief culprit in the destruction of all the Very Saintly Labors of Ashiata Shiemash
  29. The fruits of former civilizations and the blossoms of the contemporary
  30. Art
  31. The sixth and last sojourn of Beelzebub on the planet Earth
  32. Hypnotism
  33. Beelzebub as professional hypnotist
  34. Russia
  35. A change in the appointed course of the falling of the transspace ship Karnak
  36. Just a wee bit more about the Germans
  37. France
  38. Religion
  39. The Holy Planet “Purgatory”
  40. Beelzebub tells how people learned and again forgot about the fundamental cosmic law of Heptaparaparshinokh
  41. The Bokharian dervish Hadji-Asvatz-Troov
  42. Beelzebub in America
  43. Beelzebub’s survey of the process of the periodic reciprocal destruction of men, or Beelzebub’s opinion of war
  44. In the opinion of Beelzebub, man’s understanding of justice is for him in the objective sense an accursed mirage
  45. In the opinion of Beelzebub, man’s extraction of electricity from Nature and its destruction during its use, is one of the chief causes of the shortening of the life of man
  46. Beelzebub explains to his grandson the significance of the form and sequence which he chose for expounding the information concerning man
  47. The inevitable result of impartial mentation
  48. From the author

George Ivanovich Gurdjieff died like a king in France on October 29, 1949 Morning. He was buried at Avon Cemetery at Fontainebleau, Prieuré.