The School was founded during the Depression years of the 1930s by Leon MacLaren, son of Labour MP Andrew MacLaren. The School had its roots in the economic theories of Henry George, which the Liberal Party sought to implement before the First World War, and the Labour Party in 1931.
From there the School developed and took a new turn in the 1950s, following the discovery of the teaching of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky. The School’s main focus became philosophy, reinforced by the introduction of meditation through the Maharishi, later guru to the Beatles. Further evolution came in 1965 when Leon MacLaren met the Shankaracharya of Jyotir Math, Sri Shantananda Saraswati, whose spiritual advice is expounded in a series of chapters interspersed through the book.
Under the guidance of the philosophy of Advaita Vedanta the School continued to expand its range of activities, including art, Sanskrit, music and Renaissance studies. It founded an independent school for children which, along with the School itself, has affiliated branches around the world. The School met with criticisms and controversy along the way, and the author deals with these episodes openly.
In Search of Truth helps explain why hundreds of thousands have attended courses at the School of Economic Science in the UK and around the world, and why they hold it in such high regard.