Podcast Series 1, Episode 1: Threefold Attention Exercise

From the works of Newton, Plato and Pythagoras, we describe a simple structure behind all phenomena in the Universe, based on a diatonic musical octave. With simple understanding of this structure, you will be able to undertake an objective exercise, which causes you to repeatedly experience a higher state of attention and consciousness, also called Awakening, or Enlightenment.

This structure maps precisely the psychology of human beings, the construct of our inner and outer worlds, DNA creation, elements, the exact order electrons fill shell structures, the Fibonacci sequence, Pascal’s Triangle, the real and true meaning of the Enneagram, and the creation of life itself.

Threefold Attention Exercise - three egales

Threefold Attention Exercise

This is an exercise to unify your three centers: mind, emotion and body, leaving you with a calm, peaceful state, and an alert sense of self.

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Talks on objectivity

This is a series of talks about objective consciousness, an objective universe, and an objective way to wake up.

It is primarily based on the works of George I. Gurdjieff and Russell A. Smith, and aims to cut through the swathes of subjectivity that cloud our evolution and journey through life. 

Each episode focuses upon a particular element of their teachings and aims to bring simple understanding to what was frequently hidden in plain sight within the various subject areas of the Fourth Way.

The first series contains exercises designed to change our being and our general state of consciousness, as described by Russell A. Smith.

The second series is about the structure of the man, and reveals how to awaken, what Gurdjieff called, our two higher centers.

And, in a later series, Mr. Smith will explain the simple mathematics of the Universe.

Our aim is to bring understanding to what was frequently hidden in plain sight within the various subject areas of the Fourth Way.

The Threefold Attention Exercise

Today, we’re going to talk about an exercise called “The Threefold Attention Exercise”. An amazing exercise that shows us how we can have; and, focus multiple attentions.

Many people think we can only pay attention to one thing at a time. 

However, anyone who has ever had a song playing in their head all day long, knows that we can have an attention on the song, and an attention on what we do in life. So, it’s possible to have more than one attention.

“Everyone can have three different attentions”

Every person can have three different attentions that are generated from three different brains. First, we have a reptilian brain at the top of our spinal cord that is responsible for instinctual sensing and basic movement. Second, is the cerebellum, or limbic system, responsible for co-ordinated movement, motivation, and emotional meaning. And, third, the outer neocortex, which is the intellectually developed brain of higher thinking mammals and is responsible for language, abstraction, planning, and perception.


Each of these brains has its own memory, its own attention, and its own will.  That is why, if we can’t remember a phone number, we grab a pencil and start writing it… and, by doing so, we remember it. When we do, we discover the memory is in the brain responsible for movement, not in the brainin which we first looked.


So, we have different brains… or centres; and, each one of them has its own memory, its own attention, and its own will. 

If we learned how to bring the attention of the three brains together, instead of having a random song playing in our head, we would be able to merge that attention with the other two, and hold all three on the task in hand.


This can be observed. For example when you are driving in your car, if a song comes on the radio that draws your attention, you will reach over and turn up the radio. 

Why do you do that? Why does that song need to be turned up?

Different memories in different parts

It is because the memory of it is in multiple centres. 

There is a memory of it in the instinctive centre, because you know the melody. 

There is a memory of it in the moving centre, because you have danced to it. 

There is a purely emotional memory of it in our cerebellum, because you listened to it when you were in love. 

And, there is a memory of it in the intellectual centre, because you know all the words.


So, because the memory of it is in multiple centers, the radio gets turned up. 


We did not do that for the song that played before it, nor for the song that played after it, but… THAT SONG needs turned up.

What has most presence, leads

In addition, it is interesting to observe that the centre that you are most present in, at the moment when the song came on, takes the lead… and the other centres will lend their attention to it.


If you are in your moving centre, you will start tapping the beat on the steering wheel. The moving centre has the lead… and the other centres will support it.

a) If you are in your instinctive center, you will start humming the melody and singing the tune, which is also supported by the other centers.

b) If you are in your emotional center, you will find yourself in melancholy thoughts of past loves; or, remember the wonderful time you had at the beach party when you first heard it.

c) If you are in your intellectual center, you will start singing the words and may be surprised to learn that you know more of the lyrics than you thought you knew. 


So, if that ever happened to you, you know that there are different centres. Each has its own memory, its own attention, and its own will. 


OK, the exercise in this talk is called “The Threefold Attention Exercise”.

I will instruct you on how to establish three separate attentions… and then, show you how to unify them.



Create attention – count your breaths

First, find a comfortable place to sit; and, start counting your breaths.

Do not alter your breathing, do not try to change it. Just count it. 

You can count 1 on the inhale and 2 on the exhale, or 1 on the exhale and 2 on the inhale, it doesn’t matter. 

Some people like to double count. They count the cycle, twice.

They count 1 on the inhale and repeat 1 on the exhale, in that way they hear and confirm the number they are on.


It doesn’t matter which way you choose, it just matters that you have a rhythm to count: 1, 2, 3, 4. 

When you start counting, it is important to understand that you want all of you to count. You want every part of yourself counting. 

Every part of you should be counting your breaths. 

All of you ; you do not want to get to 80 and wonder if you have done the 80’s. 

You do not want to have a moment of uncertainty, and question, “Am I in the 80’s or the 90’s?”

Lock in the count

The aim is to get to a moment where there is enough of you counting, that something in you knows that you will never lose the count.

You KNOW the next number is 83, and the one after that is 84, and the one after that is 85. 

There is something in you that knows you are not going to lose the count. 

You have it locked in, you are there. 

It may take 50 numbers, 60 numbers, or 70 numbers; maybe, less… but somewhere, there will be a moment where you say, “I’ve got this! I am all here. Every part of me knows where I am… and I am not going to forget the number I am on, nor the number which comes next. 

That is, you are not counting with just one center, you are counting with all centers.  Thus, the other centers are incapable of corrupting your count. 

Every part of you is counting. 

You have brought it all to the count. 

Create a second attention – sense

The moment that you have that realisation. That is, the moment you sense that all of you is counting, and that you are not going to forget the count, try to create a second attention. 

That is, pull your instinctive centre away from the count and say to it, “You, sense.” 

Focus on some sound, perhaps, the sound of your breath, the sound of a ticking clock, the sounds of traffic, or any other nearby sounds. 

Continue counting your breaths while you do this.

If you do it right, all of a sudden, there will be two things taking place in you. 

One part of you, your moving and emotional centers, will still be on the count, and another part of you, your instinctive center, will have attention on what it hears. 

The sounds will be bigger, bolder, clearer, and more distinct; and, there will be a remarkable awareness that you are doing both. That is, you have one attention on counting, and another attention on hearing. 

It is like, “Wow, I have two separate attentions! One is counting; and one is hearing.” 

The count gets stronger

Sometimes, when this happens, the count gets stronger, because the instinctive center has been pulled away and is no longer there to corrupt the count.

So, first get them both going, until you have a firm realisation that you have two independent attentions, one is counting 75, 76, 77…and, at the same time, there is an awareness of sounds and a heightened dimension of hearing. 

That is, there are two things, simultaneously, taking place in you. 

You are not jumping back and forth saying, “84, now hear the birds, 85, now listen to the traffic.”

It is not one attention jumping back and forth between two things, it is two attentions, focused on two separate things. 


Now, the moment you lock into a 2nd attention, go for a 3rd. 

Create a third attention – feel gratitude

Pull your emotional centre away from the count and say to it, “You come here. You feel.” 

Sometimes, people do not know what to feel.

If they do not, I tell them, start with gratitude. 

There is always something to be grateful for. 

Grateful for your family, grateful for your work, grateful for being alive, grateful for being a human, grateful for something. 

You can get a feeling of gratitude. So, find something that you are grateful for and hold that image. 

See if you can get a third attention going.  That is, in addition to the attention you have on counting, and the attention you have on hearing. 

If you do, your count may get even stronger because the emotional center is no longer there to corrupt it.

Your aim is to have one attention counting breaths, a second attention hearing sounds, and a third attention feeling gratitude.

And, if I do it right, there will be something in you that knows you have three attentions. 

One counting, still nailing those numbers, not missing a thing. 

Another sensing, everything is loud and full and noticed.

And the third, holding a feeling of gratitude. 

It is an incredible moment.

Your physiology may change

And, if you get there, your physiology may change, just like if you ran up and down the road. 

When you stopped, you would be breathing differently. 

The body would say, “I had to change the bodily rhythms in order to provide what was needed.” 

So do not be surprised if your breathing goes shallow and becomes rapid.  If it does, don’t try to change it.  The body knows what it needs to do in order to maintain all three attentions.

I often hear stories of how the rhythm of someone’s breathing changes, when they create three attentions. 

For some, the breathing slows down and becomes elongated. 

But, for most, it becomes rapid and shallow.

In fact, sometimes the breathing is so rapid that the mind cannot count it, yet you can hear the moving centre rapidly ticking off the numbers… 145, 146, 147, 148, etc.  

The count goes fast

It is like, wow, my mind cannot count that fast, but my moving center can. 

OK, you now have three attentions: one attention is sensing, one attention is feeling, and a third attention is counting; and, they are all very strong, even though your breathing is fast and furious.

One other thing, the intellectual center may realize, at this point, that it is not a participant. If it does, it will create a fourth attention in you; it will be astonished at the strength and prowess of the other centers. 

So, try to create three attentions: one sensing, a second feeling, and a third counting. 


Hold them separate for as long as you can.

Then, when you are ready, bring them all back together… and focus on one thing: The wholeness of you.  


And, for a time, bask in the presence of your presence.

That is the end of The Threefold Attention Exercise.

Thank you for listening.

Hopefully you created three separate attentions and then unified them into one, which, by the way, should be our normal state.


Until it is, keep turning up that radio!

Find out more

If you would like to know more about the subjects and exercises we’ve been covering in these talks, including the book and guide that underpins it all, and how we work with it, you can find us at The Dog Publishing, at the website The Dog Pub Dot Com. 

That’s T H E D O G P U B DOT COM.

Or; if you would like to obtain diagrams of the structure, listen to other talks, as well as learn all the mathematics that supports them, you can go to our new website at THEDOG Teachings dot com. That’s  T H E D O G T E A C H I N G S DOT COM

It is filled and being filled with Mr. Smith’s diagrams, podcasts, scripts, videos, exercises, and also all chapters from Mr Smith’s book Gurdjieff: Cosmic Secrets The TEACHING GUIDE which is available for PDF download, and which gives you access to an ultimate exercise that objectively is able to wake people up.

Thus, you may have real time access to the materials we are discussing.

Goodbye until next time.

Teachings based upon the works of R. A. Smith and G. I. Gurdjieff.

All material © 2020 THEDOG Publishing

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