The "Oral Tradition" is more than simply giving a live class, and yet the live experience is a good example, if understood. Many of you have attended what you thought was a marvelous concert and have found that later if there was a recording made available it did not live up to the actual "live experience." The "experience" that was special was not able to be etched into a plastic groove or digitalized into a holographic rainbow. The plastic was not able to make that leap.
The live "Closed Class" experience makes possible the transmission of what is sometimes called "fire in the mouth," or "Baraka." This is the release of the Word, the Logos, the Truth, Beingness in consciousness beyond the syllables of the capsules of sound that we audibly hear and yet internally experience on an elevated level. It is that essence that can't be found in the printed word or captured on tape.
This "fire walk of the mind" is made possible because of the Fourth Way student/teacher relationship in class. There is but One Consciousness in True Reality and it is contact with this higher state during class that allows change to take place. The student must make changes on an individual level and yet there are no separate levels in truth, therefore the students become part of the Mind that is operating in class, thereby providing a "leap potential." This may even go unnoticed by some, but necessary nonetheless for the student, the teacher, and the ultimate reason for why all of this is unfolding at this time. More often than not, however, students will consciously realize they have been through something even if they can't describe what it is verbally.
The atmosphere is electric and yet often so still, it can seem alarming to the uninitiated. This stillness can only be the result of a Oneness in Consciousness, otherwise there would be the usual fidgeting, coughing, sneezing, book dropping, type of annoyances that attend most lectures and classes. This isn't to say that these interruptions are entirely absent either, but it is those periods without them that can often tell the keen observer that "something special" is taking place. It could be likened to a form of subliminal networking where the original software is reinstalled and updated. This isn't dictated by the individual teacher, however. This is something that takes place on a higher level and reveals itself within the framework of the collective in class. This is what brought about the term "Closed Class." It is not that the class is secret or private, but rather it is an event which is whole and complete unto itself and within that "world" the collective becomes one body which experiences leaps on a collectively basis which is removed from what is taking place outside of the confines of the classroom. A person listening to a tape of the class may have his or her own experience with the material but the "Baraka" aspect is not present.
This is also why students take the same classes repeatedly. The classes are never the same, and each time a little more is understood. One sitting is impossible for the absorption of this knowledge. This is also the reason for "reviewer" fees which are considerably lower. This is to encourage the student to discover "more of what he or she missed the first time."
From Cabalistic, gnostic, eastern sources, ancient writings of various thought, the oral approach has an importance beyond what western mind thinks was a result of merely the lack of books or TV. Even Christianity, though rarely understood, conveys the "speaking of the word." But to quote a Bible passage that relates this, John the Baptist says:
"I baptize you in water... but the one who follows me... will baptize you with... fire." -Matthew 3:11
Water is emotion and fire is spirit. This is the leap from psychology to spirituality. This is where the teacher recognizes "Oneness with the Father" and declares:
"I will forgive their iniquities and never call their sins to mind." - Hebrews 8:11
The error is discarded and only Truth is known, giving up the past for a new awareness of reality. The teacher sees truth in the students where they themselves cannot.
"Christ's teaching was twofold and the higher knowledge was imparted only to some of his disciples. It was not designed for the multitude, but communicated to those only who were capable of receiving it orally." - Clement of Alexandria
...."And in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God." - John 1:1
...."A feeling of awe came over the crowd when they saw this, and they praised God for giving such power to men." - Matthew 9:8
"For everything that is now covered will be uncovered, and everything now hidden will be made clear." - Matthew 10:26
And from the writings of the Upanishads, we read:
...."The awakening which thou hast known does not come through the intellect, but rather, in the fullest measure, from the lips of the wise."
"The person who passes through this experience will learn in the few minutes, or even moments, of its continuance, more than in months, than in years of study, and he will learn much that no study ever taught or can teach." - Dr. Bucke (author of Cosmic Consciousness)
"None of the mystical religions of the East have ever placed any reliance on the written word, and have always handed on their teachings by word of mouth." - Dr. Kenneth Walker (student of Gurdjieff, author of several books)
The intention of this material on Closed Class is not to superficially mystify the experience. This would cause some people wanting to take class to feel as if they would be exposed. This is not the case. Whatever exposure takes place is between you and certain formulas operating, as it were, behind the curtain of the Cosmos. Neither is this promotional hype. It is not a matter of magic, it is a matter of change. Those of the philosophical elite have always professed that internal change is utmost in priority but in the end too many people seek physical miracles. Miracles are simply seeing things happen which seem unaligned with the usual natural course of physical science as we know it. Anytime I meet someone who genuinely desires to know Truth, I have experienced a miracle. Truly an experience not following the contours of usual unfoldment.