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For those who study the great art of lying in bed there is one emphatic caution to be added. Even for those who can do their work in bed (like journalists), still more for those whose work cannot be done in bed (as, for example, the professional harpooners of whales), it is obvious that the indulgence must be very occasional. But that is not the caution I mean. The caution is this: if you do lie in bed, be sure you do it without any reason or justification at all. I do not speak, of course, of the seriously sick. But if a healthy man lies in bed, let him do it without a rag of excuse; then he will get up a healthy man. If he does it for some secondary hygienic reason, if he has some scientific explanation, he may get up a hypochondriac.
In his long life as naval historian, ambassador, environmentalist and author, James George has known a number of remarkable people and has lived in some of the world’s most interesting countries. The Dalai Lama calls him “my old friend.” Chogyam Trungpa called him “a wise and benevolent man, an ideal statesman.” He is credited with having helped to avert a war between India and Pakistan in 1971. Later, in the International Whaling Commission, he played a leading role in saving several species of whales from extinction. And now he shares what he can of his practice of the Gurdjieff way towards awakening to the present moment that has been the inner thread of his life for five decades—the awareness of the consciousness that is omnipresent and universal. However, most of this book is not about the Gurdjieff way but about what it means to be a real human being today, in the light of the latest science and of traditional teachings. He is the author of Asking for the Earth: Waking Up to the Spiritual/Ecological Crisis (1995), and The Little Green Book on Awakening (2008).