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October 13 , 2009

Notes on The Next Attention


For many summers in the Swiss alpine village of Chandolin, Dr. Michel de Salzmann met with people interested in the Gurdjieff Work, a teaching for awakening in the midst of everyday life. Seeing objectively, being present, 'related to an energy' – all these are prominent themes in 78 recollected talks to groups from around the world.

Dr. de Salzmann speaks of a quality of attention that is 'a sacred energy coming into me. With a very active attention, I can receive this energy. When this energy is there and I am sure of it, aware of it moment by moment, I begin to be.' Indeed, 'the only discovery' is this energy: 'We are in a process to come under another influence. There is 'my' attention, secondary attention, that runs up the mountain, sees obstacles, does this or that. If it is 'my' attention, it is not this other Attention, which transforms.'This other Attention – which transforms – is the subject of this book.

From the talks of Michel de Salzmann:

'Perhaps there is no inclination to turn inward. Let it be. Just watch. The power of attention more and more can fill the body.... Everything we need is here in us. Everything for fuller being. There is a kind of sacred descent of attention that can bring this about. Seeing the obstacles, thoughts, feelings, yes, perhaps a pressure that keeps me from it. But if I can relax inside, just allow the pure attention to flow in, be in that. Very natural. It's what we are. Attention: a sacred energy coming into me. Be sensitive to it. Recognize again and again that it is there.'

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