2010 Reprint of 1963 Edition. These are the memoirs of the great mystic and teacher who inspired a generation of disciples and followers before, during and briefing after the Second World War. In Meetings With Remarkable Men Gurdjieff introduces us to some of the companions he encountered in his travels to the most remote regions of Central Asia. With colorful episodes from his adventures, he brings to life the story of his own relentless search for a real and universal knowledge. The book can be read as a colorful narrative or psychological autobiography, but the meaning of its contents can be better appreciated in relation to the expositions of his previously published ideas.
Right around the turn of the 20th century, G.I. Gurdjieff initiated a group of spiritual adventurers called the "Seekers of Truth." These intrepid intellectuals of every stripe crisscrossed Africa and Asia in search of the hidden mysteries of antiquity. In Meetings with Remarkable Men, Gurdjieff narrates their exploits while drawing portraits of these extraordinary figures (including one woman and a dog). Half travel journal, half autobiography, Meetings with Remarkable Men begins with Gurdieff's childhood, when he finds his book learning at odds with paranormal events that were self-evident but inexplicable through modern science. Later he discovers a map of "pre-sands Egypt" and evidence of the Sarmound Brotherhood, alleged keepers of ancient wisdom dating back four and a half millennia. He climbs the Himalayas, follows the Nile, and is led blindfolded to a mysterious monastery. In his encounters with dervishes, monks, and fakirs, Gurdjieff recovers the wisdom he seeks; by comparison, European understanding, he says, is backwards and barbaric. A controversial figure in his time, Gurdjieff inspired deep love and loyalty in his pupils and ridicule from skeptics. At the bookends of Meetings with Remarkable Men, Gurdjieff suggests the value of blurring the line between allegory and straight reporting. But then what exactly is Meetings with Remarkable Men? You be the judge. --Brian Bruya