Kenneth Jonsson, Sweden
GIG: How did you come across
Gurdieff ideas in Sweden?
Kenneth: By finding the only book available in Swedish at that time, Colin Wilson's "Struggle against Sleep". I had read his "The Outsider" and when looking for other books by the same author I found it. I still like that book a lot and in my opinion Wilson put the finger on some important points which probably most "Gurdjieffeans" would disagree with. Wilson's approach set the direction for me I guess. Rather than being "in it" he takes on the observers view so to say and becomes inspired by the ideas. An approach that of course is seen as laughable by many "real" Gurdjieffeans. Actually reading about the movement after Gurdjieff's death is often sad reading and I'm sure Gurdjieff would find it extremely amusing in many ways.
GIG: It is interesting to note that Colin Wilson has introduced Gurdjieff to probably more people than anybody else.
You have had some contacts with some people in Sweden. How are they related to Gurdjieff and what did you get out of these contacts?
Kenneth: To be honest the contacts with other "Gurdjieff people" are very limited and I can't possibly comment on them. The only thing I can say is that for me personally I didnt feel the need for further contact with them at that time.
GIG: Are you thinking of making an effort to get in touch with other people?
Kenneth: Yes probably. I'm very cautious though. It's obvious a powerful system like this can be misused in several ways by people that do not understand they're just mad machines like the rest of us. I'm quite pessimistic. I'm also painfully aware of the extreme difficulties to get anywhere in this on my own.
GIG: You have made a computer 'Stop Exercise'. What are your own experiences in using it?
Kenneth: It's fantastic! It will definitely change your life if you use it every day. If it does you can send the check payable to Kenn...
No seriously, the idea for the Stop Exercise application came after trying to use my incoming mail sound as a reminding signal. But it didnt work well. Too easy to forget and the sound came too often in situations not suitable. One must put the aim on a level where you know you have the possibility to carry it out. Therefore an application where you could set the preferences could be a solution. Also, the actual "Stop" command rather than just any sound is important I think. I'm planning to make improvements on the application so the user has even more options with the sound file. I'm also very interested in feedback from people that have tried it.
I have used it a couple of times and I think it works quite well, especially when involved in some kind of physical activity of course (not computer work). It definitely worked better than the incoming mail signal.
GIG: What are your comments on the Gurdjieff sites on the internet?
Kenneth: I visit gurdjieff.org regularly. There are often interesting articles there. What I miss is a more dynamic place where now living people share their thoughts. Maybe the gurdjieff-internet.com could evolve to that. I hope so.
GIG: How will you go on with your Gurdjieff studies?
Kenneth: I don't have a clue. I'm not sure if I could consider myself having started at all. I will continue the translating though. I found this to be very rewarding when forcing myself to express the ideas in my own language. But of course this is all theoretical. I guess I havent realized the "terror of the situation" enough to make more serious efforts.
Copyright © Kenneth Jonsson, Gurdjieff Internet Guide