This ‘maleficent Kundabuffer’, intentionally implanted at the base of the spine, obliged mankind to perceive reality upside-down and to experience indiscriminate gratification from every repetition of stimuli. Man’s progression towards objective understanding was instantly arrested; he was as if subdued by opium; he walked in hypnotic sleep through a waking dream; his suggestibility became total; his energies were fatally surrendered to egoism, self-love, vanity and pride. Just as Sakafi intended, man now served the moon blindly – ironically doomed to imagine himself the monarch of all he surveyed.
Not an atom of spite or malevolence was entailed either in the general creation of the Askokin factory-farm or in man’s special corruption. On the scale of the moon’s imperious need to ‘grow in consciousness’ and to fulfil the note Re of the Ray of Creation, organic life, man included, was simply expendable. ‘That pale temptress the moon, the cause of all our woes’ (the words are Powys’s) was a cosmological innocent, sucking the vitality out of organic life from pure infantile necessity. Sakafi himself meant no harm; indeed, as soon as the moon’s crisis abated and the organ Kundabuffer became redundant; it was promptly removed from man.
Precisely here Gurdjieff drives home the dreadful irony of man’s present situation. The organic compulsion to see reality upside-down had gone forever. The gift of man’s extraordinary potentiality had been restored; he was a ‘simulchritude of the whole’ – a being who through ‘conscious labour and intentional suffering’ might slowly perfect himself to the level of objective Reason and attain immortality by re-integrating with his source, the divine sun. Alas! Though the compulsion to lunacy was gone, the propensity had become crystallized. Delusion, suggestibility, malpractice, and every kind of rotten feeling so permeated human life; so festered in customs, language, social institutions and the family circle; had gained such strong momentum – that to all intents and purposes man was still in Kunderbuffer’s thrall. Such was, and still is, the ‘Terror of the Situation’.
– James Moore. Gurdjieff. (1999, P 47-8)