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THE LATIFAS
By Jose Reyes
The Latifas are also called the subtle points, which imply something very small and quite insignificant. They are actually the points of union between the second body and the soul. For us ordinary people is very hard to visualize that it is possible to make such a contact as substantial as the experience we have when we work at other morning exercises that involve attention with sensation (filling) or even the six points exercise. The answer lies in numbers. There is a very especial energy which we can call the energy of possibilities that accumulates every time we sit together with a common aim.
Time and time again we have witness that as a group our possibilities are much grater than as individuals. "Whenever two or three gather in my name I shall be amongst them" . (Jesus)
The Latifas are like very small batteries that can receive minimal charges every time we do the exercise. Little by little begin to feel their effect in our daily life. As I said in another article, we begin to feel that our emotions become more stable and substantial. When we begin to make the connection in the mornings, at first as the name implies it is very subtle, but the sensation becomes stronger with practice. We begin to feel protected by an invisible shield of strong feelings that we can only pay back with strong feeling of thankfulness.
Each Latifa by itself represent a Sacred Impulse that we can hardly recognize as such, and we begin to see where we are lacking. We may find as it is usually the case, that we lack the power to actualize all of them. Then we feel our lack of Wish, Hope, Faith, Acceptance and Love. Usually there is one in particular that we come to terms with and realize that there lays the biggest obstacle in our personal life as well as our Work as individuals.
It is striking how Gurdjieff talks about the condition of the Sacred Impulses in All and Everything. He said that for us Humans the condition of these Sacred Impulses have deteriorated so much that we have developed our own way to exercise them in our lives. So that we also hope, believe and love. But how we exercise these impulses ah, it is exactly in this that all the peculiarity of these three being-properties lies, as he put it.
"These meditations of mine made it categorically clear to me, that all the genuine functions proper to man, being as they are, proper to all the three-centered beings of our Great Universe had already degenerated in their remote ancestors into other functions, namely, into functions in­cluded among the properties of the organ Kundabuffer which were very similar to the genuine sacred being­functions of Faith, Love, and Hope."
"And this degeneration occurred in all probability in consequence of the fact that when the organ Kundabuffer had been destroyed in these ancestors, and they had also acquired in themselves factors for the genuine sacred being-impulses then, as the taste of many of the properties of the organ Kundabuffer still remained in them, these properties of the organ Kundabuffer which resembled these three sacred impulses became gradually mixed with the latter, with the result that there were crystallized in their psyche the factors for the impulses Faith, Love, and Hope, which although similar to the genuine, were never­theless somehow or other quite distinct."
"The contemporary three-centered beings here do at times believe, love, and hope with their Reason as well as with their feelings; but how they believe, how they love, and how they hope-ah, it is exactly in this that all the peculiarity of these three being-properties lies"
Then he goes on to describe each one of the sacred impulses and how we interpret and manifest each one of them as follows:
FAITH
"They also believe, but this sacred impulse in them does not function independently, as it does in general in all the three-centered beings existing on the various other planets of our Great Universe, upon which beings with the same possibilities breed; but it arises dependent upon some or other factors, which have been formed in their common presences, owing as always to the same conse­quences of the properties of the organ Kundabuffer-as for instance, the particular properties arising in them which they call "vanity," "self-love",  "pride",  "self-conceit" and so forth."
"In consequence of this, the three-brained beings here are for the most part subject just to the perceptions and fixations in their presences of all sorts of  "Sinkrpoosarams" or, as it is expressed here, they "believe-any-old-tale."
"It is perfectly easy to convince beings of this planet of anything you like, provided only during their percep­tions of these "fictions" there is evoked in them and there proceeds, either consciously from without, or automatically by itself, the functioning of one or another corresponding consequence of the properties of the organ Kundabuffer crystallized in them from among those that form what is called the "subjectivity"  of the given being, as for in­stance: "self-love,","vanity, "pride", "swagger", "imagina­tion","bragging","arrogance" and so on.
"From the influence of such actions upon their degen­erated Reason and on the degenerated factors in their localizations, which factors actualize their being-sensations, not only is there crystallized a false conviction concerning the mentioned fictions, but thereafter in all sincerity and faith, they will even vehemently prove to those around them, that it is just so and can in no way be otherwise.
LOVE
"In an equally abnormal form were data molded in them for evoking the sacred impulse of love.     
"In the presences of the beings of contemporary times, there also arises and is present in them as much as you please of that strange impulse which they call love; but this love of theirs is firstly also the result of certain crys­tallized consequences of the properties of the same Kunda­buffer; and secondly this impulse of theirs arises and mani­fests itself in the process of every one of them entirely subjectively; so subjectively and so differently that if ten of them were asked to explain how they sensed this inner impulse of theirs, then all ten of them-if, of course, they for once replied sincerely, and frankly confessed their genuine sensations and not those they had read about somewhere or had obtained from somebody else-all ten would reply differently and describe ten different sensa­tions.
"One would explain this sensation in the sexual sense; another in the sense of pity; a third in the sense of desire for submission; a fourth, in a common craze for outer things, and so on and so forth; but not one of the ten could describe even remotely, the sensation of genuine Love.
"And none of them would, because in none of the ordinary beings-men here has there ever been for a long time, any sensation of the sacred being-impulse of genuine Love. And without this "taste"  they cannot even vaguely describe that most beatific sacred being-impulse in the presence of every three-centered being of the whole Uni­verse, which, in accordance with the divine foresight of Great Nature, forms those data in us, from the result of the experiencing of which we can blissfully rest from the meritorious labors actualized by us for the purpose of self-perfection.
'Here, in these times, if one of those three-brained beings "loves"  somebody or other, then he loves him either because the latter always encourages and undeservingly flatters him; or because his nose is much like the nose of that female or male, with whom thanks to the cosmic law of  "polarity"  or "type" a relation has been established which has not yet been broken; or finally, he loves him only because the latter's uncle is in a big way of business and may one day give him a boost, and so on and so forth.
"But never do beings-men here love with genuine, impartial and non-egoistic love.
"Thanks to this kind of love in the contemporary beings here, their hereditary predispositions to the crystallizations of the consequences of the properties of the organ Kunda­buffer are crystallized at the present time without hin­drance, and finally become fixed in their nature as a lawful part of them.
HOPE
"And as regards the third sacred being-impulse, namely, "essence-hope" , its plight in the presences of the three-centered beings here is even worse than with the first two.
`Such a being-impulse has not only finally adapted itself in them to the whole of their presences in a distorted form, but this maleficent strange "hope"  newly formed in them, which has taken the place of the being-impulse of Sacred Hope, is now already the principal reason why factors can no longer be acquired in them for the func­tioning of the genuine being-impulse of Faith, Love, and Hope.
"'In consequence of this newly-formed-abnormal hope of theirs, they always hope in something; and thereby all those possibilities are constantly being paralyzed in them, which arise in them either intentionally from without or accidentally by themselves, which possibilities could per­haps still destroy in their presences their hereditary predispositions to the crystallizations the properties of the organ Kundabuffer.
"Before continuing to tell you more about the activities of the Very Saintly AshiataShiemash for the welfare of your favorites, I must, I think, elucidate to you, a little more in detail, that inner impulse which is called there by your favorites Hope, and concerning which the Very Saintly AshiataShiemashconstated that the case is worse than with the other two.
"And the personal observations and investigations I later specially made regarding this said strange impulse present in them, clearly showed me that in truth the factors for engendering this abnormal impulse in their presences are most maleficent for them themselves.
"Thanks to this abnormal hope of theirs a very singular and most strange disease, with a property of evolving, arose and exists among them there even until now-a disease called there `tomorrow.'
Gurdjieff now refers I, to  people in the " Work"  specifically  when he said:       " those who have worked on themselves and have seen that we posses some very undesirable conse­quences for the deliverance from which we must make certain efforts, and which efforts moreover we even know just how to make, but owing to this maleficent disease `tomorrow' we never succeed in making these required efforts."
"This strange disease `tomorrow' brought with it terrify­ing consequences, and particularly for those unfortunate three-brained beings there who chance to learn and to become categorically convinced with the whole of their presence that they possess some very undesirable conse­quences for the deliverance from which they must make certain efforts, and which efforts moreover they even know just how to make, but owing to this maleficent disease `tomorrow' they never succeed in making these required efforts.
"And this is just the maleficent part of all that great terrifying evil, which, owing to various causes great and small, is concentrated in the process of the ordinary being­existence of these pitiable three-brained beings; and by putting off from `tomorrow' till `tomorrow,' those unfortu­nate beings there who do by chance learn all about what I have mentioned are also deprived of the possibility of ever attaining anything real.
"This strange and for your favorites maleficent disease of `tomorrow' has already become a hindrance for the beings of contemporary times, not only because they have been, totally deprived of all possibilities of removing from their presences the crystallized consequences of the properties of the organ Kundabuffer, but it had also become a hin­drance to most of them in honestly discharging at least those being-obligations of theirs which have become quite indispensable in the already established conditions of ordi­nary being-existence.
"Thanks to the disease `tomorrow,' the three-brained beings there, particularly the contemporary ones, almost always put off till `later' everything that needs to be done at the moment, being convinced that `later' they will do 'better and more.
"Owing to the said maleficent disease `tomorrow' most of those unfortunate beings there who accidentally or owing to a conscious influence from without, become aware through their Reason in them of their complete nullity and begin to sense it with, all their separate spir­itualized parts, and who also chance to learn which and in what way, being-efforts must be made in order to become such as it is proper for three-brained beings to be, also, by putting off from `tomorrow' till `tomorrow,' almost all arrive at the point that on one sorrowful day for themselves, there arise in them and begin to be mani­fest those forerunners of old age called `feebleness' and `infirmity,' which are the inevitable lot of all cosmic forma­tions great and small toward the end of their completed existence.
"Here I must without fail tell you also about that strange 'phenomenon which I constated there during my observa­tions and studies of the almost entirely degenerated pres­ences of those favorites of yours; namely, I definitely con­stated that in many of them, toward the end of their plane­tary existence, most of the consequences of the properties of that same organ which had become crystallized in their common presences, begin to atrophy of their own accord and some of them even entirely disappear, in consequence of which these beings begin to see and sense reality a little better.
"In such cases a strong desire appears in the common presences of such favorites of yours, to work upon them­selves, to work as they say, for the 'salvation-of-their-soul.'
"But needless to say, nothing can result from such, desires of theirs just because it is already too late for them, the time given them for this purpose by Great Nature -having already passed; and although they see and feel the necessity of actualizing the required being-efforts, yet for the fulfillment of such desires of theirs, they have now only ineffectual yearnings and the 'lawful ­infirmities-of-old-age.'
I have chosen the following to close, because if we observe we can easily see in which of our brains our center of gravity lays.
"Faith", "Love", and "Hope"
Faith of consciousness is freedom
Faith of feeling is weakness
Faith of body is stupidity.
Love of consciousness evokes the same in response
Love of feeling evokes the opposite
Love of body depends only on type and polarity.
Hope of consciousness is strength
Hope of feeling is slavery
Hope of body is disease.
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