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Ouspensky’s five lectures which make up "The Psychology of Man’s Possible Evolution" were not originally intended to be published.
Reading them as a book gives practically no measure of the scale of time and study needed to realise, even partially, the ideas which are expressed or why Ouspensky expressed them in this short form.
The Russian philosopher considers the "forgotten science of psychology". Disregarding the study of man as he is or seems to be, with which the modern schools concern themselves, he turns to the study of man as he may be, what man's evolution means and the question of whether there are special conditions necessary to achieve it.
In the forty or fifty years since the lectures were composed, analytical, introspective psychology has captured the interest of the masses. It has become a major course of study in colleges and in the so-called ‘free university’ movement and a dominant factor in discussions of education, art, sports and even in commerce, natural science and religion, particularly among the young. Along with this, the conquest of outer space has given an impetus to psychological and metaphysical fantasies of every sort. But psychology as self-knowledge of what a man may become, and what place he has the right to assume in the whole scheme of the universe, has remained a forgotten, almost a disappearing, science.