Some esoteric science, for those who like such things.
Glory, Grace and Mercy are the three forces that bring the embodiment of God into the material universe; yet in order to understand these three forces, and how this holy Trinity acts in the context of the law of three, it's necessary to understand how these Great Forces function as described by their positions on Gurdjieff’s enneagram.
The first Great Force is Glory.
Glory represents the intellect of God, and comes in the position of the Absolute, or, in the Gurdjieff system, the note “do’.
The intellect of God is absolute: it embodies all things, is comprehensive, transcendent, and beyond all knowing and all reason.
Nonetheless, we use the word intellect for this particular aspect of God, because we must use words, and above all, this particular note or position represents the mind of God—the intelligence of God.
Glory is the mind of God. Keep in mind, as we discuss this, that the mind of God is threefold and has of itself an emotional, a physical, and an intellectual aspect, because this will become quite important as we go on.
The second Great Force is God's Grace.
On the enneagram, this occupies position of the first conscious shock, or conscious labor, in Gurdjieff’s system. Like intellect (that is, Glory) Grace also has three aspects: physical, emotional, and intellectual. It occupies the physical or natural (right hand) side of the enneagram, and because of this, Grace starts out as a physical property, and is related to the action of moving center in human beings on this level.
The third Great Force of Mercy occupies the shock on the left, or spiritual, side of the enneagram, the position of intentional suffering.
Mercy, like its other two counterparts, has an emotional, intellectual, and physical side — in this case, its primary aspect is emotional, that is, it begins with emotion, and then incorporates intellect and the physical.
These three forces, taken together, form an ennead, or group of nine, forces that drive energy around the enneagram. They find themselves in rotation with one another, because each force successively occupies the positions of the other two forces as the triangle in the diagram turns in a circle clockwise.
In turn, they manifest according to the original quality of the position: that is, when the mind of God rotates into the position of conscious labor, it manifests its physical or energetic nature. As it rotates into the position of intentional suffering it manifests its emotional aspect.
The intellect of God, entering the octave at the note do, must then rotate to the position of the first conscious shock, hence embodying a physical manifestation, and then afterwards, in the next rotation, occupy the location of intentional suffering.
In this way the intellect of God fully comprises all three aspects of its Being in the lawful rotation through the hierarchy of force.
The same takes place with Grace, that is, the physical nature of God. Grace must become first emotional, and then intellectual, after beginning its embodiment as conscious labor.
The same is equally true of Mercy, which in its clockwise rotation takes the place of intellect and then conscious labor as it moves through its complete rotation.
In this way, all three aspects of God — the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, as they are referred to in Christianity – rotate through all three positions, so that each one of them plays a different role according to its position in the rotation. That is to say, intellect will also play a physical role and an emotional role; and it must play those roles in the lawful, progressive iteration of its nature through the manifestation of the energy.
This is a practical use, since it explains how three centered work has to proceed in man – that is, lawfully, according to the circulation of force and the requirement that each force in the Holy Trinity embodies itself within all three forces.
Lee van Laer is a Senior Editor at Parabola Magazine.