My name is Russell Allen Smith. I stumbled upon the Gurdjieff work in the late 1970s, and saw so many great truths contained therein that I didn’t want to do anything else but study myself. Thus, from that day forward, I spent every waking moment observing my mechanicality. I read for hours on end and tried to remember myself for months and months and months. Then, in 1980, my Higher Emotional Center, unexpectedly, out of nowhere, began to function… and I became self-conscious.
Shortly thereafter, my Higher Mental Center awoke, adding its properties of objective reason and impartiality. I must say that both of my awakenings were truly remarkable. Note: When a man awakens, one of the first things he will notice is that he has a double arrow of attention… one attention on what he is doing and a second attention observing himself doing it. In addition, his thoughts will stop. That is, he will observe the world without the constant, random, play-by-play commentators. The place will be silent. And, the silence will be incredible. In such a state, one begins to experience what is actually going on.
How would you know if you woke up to higher consciousness?
Imagine living your entire life with your eyes closed… and then, one day, you suddenly opened your eyes. Would you know that you had opened your eyes? Would you be able to tell the rest of the world, who still have their eyes closed, what it is like? The only way to prove to them that you have opened your eyes, would be to take them by the hand and run them through the obstacles of life without bumping into anything; or, perhaps, if you showed them how to open theirs, they would know that you had opened yours. So, it may take some time for you to recognize that someone else has opened their eyes; but, you would know in an instant if you had opened yours.
So, my awakenings were, indeed, knowable. However, when they occurred, I had no idea of what they would bring… nor, did I have an agenda.
A School of Higher Consciousness
I was not out to attract students, to become a teacher, nor to start a school.
You should know that before I awoke, I was eager to share my beliefs with everyone… to let everybody know what I was doing – what I found, what I learned, and what I liked. I would tell them, “You should read this book, watch that movie, come to my church, or be interested in such and such,”… and, then, if they did read that book, watched that movie, attended my church, or became interested in such and such, it validated my beliefs. And, the more people I persuade to like what I liked, the more valuable what I liked became.
But, after I awoke, I had no desire to share with others what I had found. I no longer needed my beliefs to be accepted by others for them to be valuable. They were valuable. Being awake was valuable. Being able to stop thoughts was valuable. Having reason, impartiality, and inner silence was valuable. My awakened state needed no validation. For the first time in my life I was silent.
And, as such, when people came into my life and questioned me about higher things (because, I guess, they sensed something higher in me) I resisted talking to them.
I did not want to proselytize the work. It was too precious. It needed to be protected, not diluted.
However, some of the folks with whom I had frequent contact kept approaching me and asking me questions. Questions about who I was, why I seemed so different, what I studied… and, if I was studying something, could they study it, too?
How I became a teacher
Eventually, a persistent few drew a response from me… and I gave them The Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution – by P. D. Ouspensky, to read. Those, who read it and wanted more, I gave The Fourth Way – also by Ouspensky – a book I have read a hundred times.
After that, if they came back and still wanted more, I began answering their questions.
So, like it or not, I was forced to become a teacher.
Soon, a group of seekers gathered at my home whenever I was in town, as my employment required extensive travel. Those seekers became serious about their work and about the teachings of Gurdjieff. And, over the next several years, they continued to ask intelligent questions and make exceptional efforts.
During that time, I made many discoveries about the inner-world of man and about the laws of World-creation and World-maintenance; discoveries that would ultimately lead to an Objective Exercise, which caused the parts of man to unify… and, the man, himself, to awaken.
All Previous Ways have been Subjective
It happened thus. It was 1990. I was in New Orleans training a salesman… and, that night, when I went back to my room, I put the following question to my Higher Mental Center, “Why are the students who have been studying with me for years not awake? They read the books I read, and do the exercises I do. They all are honorable folks and they are sincere, hard workers. Why are they not awake like me?”
The Higher Mental Center answered:
“You awoke subjectively,” it said.
“All teachers awake subjectively.
“All schools die when their teachers die.
“No one can pass on to others the subjective way in which they awoke.”
A story of a man trying to awaken
The higher then told me the story of a man who was desperately trying to awaken…. Wishing. Praying. Seeking.
One day, he was walking through the forest. His eyes were on heaven, his thoughts were on God, his mind was on his quest, and his prayers were on his tongue.
Unfortunately, he was not watching where he was walking; and, in sandaled feet, his toe struck a root.
He kicked the root with such force the pain was excruciating. As a result, he grabbed his toe and started hopping around on one foot.
And, at that moment, because of that event (coupled with his search, his quest, his wish, and his prayers) his machine aligned… and, the man awoke. It was glorious. He became enlightened.
Afterwards, everyone who came in contact with him started quizzing him as to who he was and what he was studying.
So, he told them of his quest, his wish, and his prayers; and, how he had kicked the root and awoken.
Soon, a school formed around the man; a school, based on his quest, his wish, and his prayers – with hundreds of students all walking through the forest trying to kick a root just like he had, in hopes that they too, might become enlightened.
But… no one ever did.
And, when the man died, his school died.
You cannot pass on a subjective way
I repeat, “You cannot pass on a subjective way!”
The higher revealed to me that throughout the history of mankind all enlightened men have failed to show others how to awaken, because they were unable to pass on the subjective way in which they, themselves, awoke.
It also made it very clear to me that I would be unable to pass on to those who were studying with me (no matter how sincere they were or how hard they worked) the subjective way in which I awoke.
No enlightened man has ever been able to show anyone else how to become enlightened.
There are no Gurdjieff 2.0’s. There were no mini Jesus’.
This truth – that all ways are subjective ways – was terrifying, and caused great concern to arise in me.
I repeat, “No enlightened man has ever been able to show anyone else how to become enlightened.”
When I realized the truth of that, I do not know why, but I looked back at my higher center and yelled, “Then give me an OBJECTIVE way!”
And… it did.
The Objective Exercise to Awaken
It said, “You have already figured out the structure, i.e., the rules and laws; and, if you teach those rules and laws to others and then give them this exercise, and at the right moment tell them this Great Secret and Great Truth, they will awaken.”
It then gave me a very simple exercise. And I realized, at that moment, it was infallible.
I knew that I would be able to show others how to open their eyes and awaken; and I also knew that everyone who learned the rules and laws and then did the exercise would awake; I further knew that my school would not die when I died…. And, I knew that I had been given an objective way.
I arrived back in Dallas on March 31st, 1990; and, on the following day, which just happened to be April 1st, my students assembled, and I gave them the exercise, and told them the Great Secret and the Great Truth.
When I did, they opened their eyes… and awoke.
Needless to say, they were ecstatic. That day was the most significant day of their lives; and, as such, from that day forward, they began referring to the exercise as, “The Objective Exercise” or “The April Fools Exercise,” which is what they still call it today.
As time passed, it became collectively understood that their awakening was truly remarkable, which prompted several of them to make the following demands, “We want you to be available full time… so, quit your job and stay home; we will support you.”
Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets
They further suggested that I should write a book and share my discoveries… saying, “There must be others like us out there who also wish to awaken. So, let’s buy some land, and have a place – a school – where people who are seeking an objective way can come and awake.”
So, we bought some land… and, I wrote the book, Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets. It took me five years to construct, and was finally published in 1996.
After which, it drew great interest from the Fourth Way community, so much so that an international conference was held in Bognor Regis, England to discuss my discoveries.
In 1997, a second conference was convened. At which, I informed the assembled audience there was an objective way to awaken. It required “ten days” – two days travel – and eight days studying Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets, one-on-one, with me.
No price tag on consciousness
I told them I would show everyone who found their way to Texas how to awake. That is, I would pick them up at the airport, house them, feed them, and show them how to unify their lower centers, open their eyes, and awaken; and there was no charge, no fee, for showing them how to awake, saying, “I will not put a price tag on consciousness.”
Thus immediately after the second conference, people from all over the world began booking a ten-day journey.
Not surprisingly, most of the folks who came here and completed the journey wanted to support the school. Some even wanted to move here… but all wanted to become students and continue their objective journey. That is, to awaken their Higher Mental Center and acquire reason and impartiality.
With such a diversification of students, I was compelled to create THEDOG Forum, which allowed everyone to stay in contact with me… as well as gave them access to an Archive of my teaching.
So, that is my story; the story of how I awoke, of how I became a teacher, and of how I found an objective way to awaken others.
The Inner Journey Available for Everyone
Almost 20 years later, in 2014, after surviving a brain tumor, a 14 hour surgery, and a year’s recovery, I decided that I would no longer be taking students through Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets.
But, fortunately, over the previous 20 plus years, many of the one-on-one sessions of me personally taking others on the ten-journey were recorded. Later on, they were transcribed. Finally, they were organized into my latest book, The Blueprint of Consciousness – An Accelerated Path to Awakening. A book that makes it possible for everyone to take the journey, even those who cannot come to Texas.
I, of course, am still available to answer questions about my first book, Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets, which can be purchased at Amazon.
However, if you would rather take the journey and awaken, you can purchase the hardback book, The Blueprint of Consciousness, April Fools, i.e., The Objective Exercise, and the Great Secret and Great Truth for $149.00 (shipping is FREE), or a PDF of the same for only $90.00.
If you do, you will receive Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets, a $25.00 value, for FREE, as it has been placed within The Blueprint of Consciousness.
Several podcasts of my teachings are also available. They too, are FREE… and can be found here.
Sincerely, I Am,
Russell A. Smith
PS: As my life winds down, The Blueprint of Consciousness, April Fools, i.e., The Objective Exercise, and the Great Secret and Great Truth are my parting gifts to humanity. I am confident they will do for you, what they have already done for so many.