Fourth Way
School Lessons

The Science of MAN:
The Fourth Way School of Dr. Bob Gibson

Dr. Bob Rhondell Gibson

In the late 1980’s, spiritual teacher Dr. Robert “Bob” Rhondell Gibson produced a series of 48 weekly lessons on audio cassette tapes for students unable to participate in school groups. This lesson series, referred to as The Science of Man (or more simply, “The 48-Weeks”), has been a launching point for discovery and liberation for generations of students.


Although the audio cassettes were originally designed for use by independent students, the program has also been a teaching foundation for numerous Fourth Way study groups.


Those familiar with the Fourth Way teachings of G.I. Gurdjieff, P.D. Ouspensky, Maurice Nicoll and others will recognize some familiar ideas and spiritual work approach—objective self-observation as a process of exposing the operations of the conditioned self, purifying perception, and disidentification from the ego. Beyond those shared principles, the Science of Man is a unique expression of the Great Teaching, universally regarded by students as accessible, direct, and complete as a school of spiritual work.

The progression of lessons is specific and each video is designed as a weekly lesson. It is recommended that you progress in sequence and at the weekly pace as designed.  

Lessons for Weeks 13-48

Use the accordion toggles below to view lessons for weeks 13-48.

Frequently Asked Questions


Who is Dr. Bob Rhondell Gibson?

Dr. Robert Rhondell Gibson was born in Kentucky in 1916. In the 1970’s, he left a career as a medical doctor to dedicate attention to sharing the Great Teaching with others. In the following years, Dr. Bob conducted live Fourth Way school groups around the United States while earning income by creating, growing, and selling diverse types of small businesses.


In the 1980’s, Dr. Bob recorded the 48-week Science of Man lesson program on audio cassettes for use by students unable to disrupt their homes and careers to attend a live school. Since that time, the 48 Weeks have been a launching point for freedom and spiritual discovery for generations of students.


Although Dr. Bob’s teaching is far less known today than the legacy of folks such as Gurdjieff, Krishnamurti, and other famous teachers with similar messages, his presentation of ideas and spiritual work approach is uniquely recognized by students for its simplicity, clarity, and practical application in daily living.


Dr. Bob ‘departed the party’ in 1994. Since then, his teachings have been available and re-expressed through the unique contributions of his students.


Regarding his role as a teacher, Dr. Bob often stated, “It’s the contents that matter, not the container.” In that spirit, “Who is Dr. Bob?” is not very important. Maybe a more valuable question is “What is Dr. Bob?” And more relevantly, “What are YOU?”


What is The Science of Man?

The Science of Man is a Fourth Way school program originally recorded by Dr. Bob Rhondell Gibson as 48 weekly lessons on audio tapes.


The videos hosted on this site were produced with visual elements to augment Dr. Bob’s lectures and increase accessibility for today’s student audience.


What is the Fourth Way?

The term “Fourth Way” was coined by author P.D. Ouspensky to name the body of spiritual teachings introduced by G.I. Gurdjieff. The term “Fourth Way” derives from Gurdjieff’s description of three spiritual work approaches–the way of the monk, way of the fakir, and way of the yogi. The ‘fourth way’ as implied by Gurdjieff, incorporates elements of the other three as a living school that appears, disappears, and morphs throughout history.


How does the Science of Man school program compare with the traditional Fourth Way teachings of Gurdjieff?

The spiritual work approach presented in the Science of Man lessons is identical to the Fourth Way teachings of G.I. Gurdjieff—disidentified, non-judgmental observation of the activities of the conditioned self while engaged in daily living. And through the work of objective self-observation, a process of transformation may begin resulting in freedom from the mechanical control of the self and remembrance of our true identity.


Gurdjieff’s Fourth Way and the Science of Man also share many common symbols and principles regarding the mechanical nature of conditioned man, fragmented will (described as legions of conflicting “I’s” or “Not-I’s”), levels of consciousness (e.g., waking sleep, objective consciousness, etc.), self-remembering, and the nature of Real-I. Beyond those shared symbols and principles, the Science of Man omits many of Gurdjieff’s cosmological ideas which are often confusing to students and irrelevant for purposes of practical spiritual work.


Dr. Bob’s Science of Man also introduces several tools for spiritual study absent in Gurdjieff’s teachings such as the Picture of Man and Picture of Conditioned Man. Many students also find the Science of Man’s progressive and no-nonsense approach to studying the conditioned self quite effective in de-mystifying ideas often obscured in esoteric teachings.

“Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there!
for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you. ”

- Luke 17:21