Paul Beekman Taylor was born in London, lived at the Prieuré with Gurdjieff, and studied with him from 1948-1949. He earned a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University in 1954, a Master of Arts from Wesleyan University in 1958, and received his Ph. D. from Brown University in 1961. He was a Fulbright Scholar and then a Fulbright Lecturer before becoming a Professor of Medieval English Languages and Literatures at the University of Geneva. He is also a member of the Planning Committee and Advisory Board fo the All & Everything Conference held once a year in Brighton, England.Of Shadows of Heaven he writes: “I am what in French would be called an insérend; witness, narrator and occasional participant in their stories.”
From essay “What did Gurdjieff give to me? What did he ask of me? “:
Gurdjieff made me acutely aware of my multiple identities before him. Whatever I said to him raised the question in his eyes: “Do you know who is saying these words?” Doubt yourself, he taught, and whenever I feel that emotions are governing my actions, I need to question what center in me is in control.
One can learn more from pain than from pleasure.
Education is a factory turning out servants for a social system, when it should be, as it once was, an avenue toward a realization of self.
Links to the selections from his books: