William B Stoecker: What is called the New Age Movement really began in the US and Europe in the nineteen sixties and seventies. The New Agers are a diverse lot, but what they have in common is a dissatisfaction with traditional Christianity and Judaism, coupled with a rejection of atheism and materialism. The worst of the New Agers are Satanists like Anton La Vey and Michael Aquino, but the best are sincere spiritual seekers who trust their inner voice more than the voice of any priest or rabbi, although some have merely exchanged one spiritual teacher for another by following various self-appointed gurus. Most are heavily influenced by Eastern religions, particularly Hinduism and Zen Buddhism. New Agers emphasize the oneness, the unity, of all things and all beings, strive to unite science and mysticism, and often believe in holistic health practices. The Esalen Institute is essentially a New Age organization, as was the Findhorn Foundation.
This is just the tip of the iceberg for the enigmatic Gurdjieff, "a seeker of the truth."
So much is difficult to explain, for example his unusual combination of psychic gifts,
his first book suggesting he could have been a very early UFO contactee before WWI,
and his ability to effectively disguise himself during his travels. It is quite possible
that the Gurdjieff name was not the one he was born with. He could give people something
of the impression he was not just a man but more of a djinn or fallen angel. The real truth
about Gurdjieff may never be known without help from higher realms.