Breaking Open the Head ペーパーバック – 2004/2/2
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A new `The Doors of Perception' for the 21st century? A visionary journey from cynicism to shamanism by a brilliant young US writer. Daniel Pinchbeck was an essentially sane and rational person, living the life of a sophisticated urbanite. But one disenchanted day he felt he'd exhausted the shallow aspirations of the contemporary scene. So he went on a quest. And he went all the way: to West Africa to test Iboga, a psychedelic herb which can cause such profound insight that one dose equals twenty years of psychoanalysis; to the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert where cutting-edge technology meets radical self-exploration; to Mexico and to the Amazon where shamanic traditions are practised daily. Sceptical but curious, following in the footsteps of Aldous Huxley and Terence McKenna, Daniel Pinchbeck guides his readers on an astonishing journey around the world and through the mind. Are you brave enough to suspend your post-modern cynicism and break open the head with him?
`As mind-expanding as the chemicals it chronicles, "Breaking Open the Head" is the most artful and provocative investigation of psychedelia since Aldous Huxley's "The Doors of Perception".' Stephen Johnson, author of `Emergence' `I much admire "Breaking Open the Head" for being the account of an authentic quest for enlightenment in jungles, up rivers, in deserts, and hardest of all to access, the human mind and heart via the one of the oldest thoroughfares on earth, mind-expanding drugs. This is a serious and illuminating journey.' Paul Theroux `By the end of this highly readable report, Pinchbeck's head has been broken into so often - by ayahuasca, magic mushrooms, DMT and other drugs - that you might expect him to install hinges. Yet there is a seriousness behind his self-experiments and while the drug tales are gripping, and funny, he is at pains to put them in the context of his search for meaning.' Guardian `A modern Odyssey, a search for spiritual revelations, a success.' Independent商品の説明をすべて表示する
I keep reading his final chapter over and over. It is creating a new paradigm shift for me, leading me to greater awareness and action. Reading his conclusion as well as the conclusions of other authors I have read subsequently, thanks to Pinchbeck's references, has been a huge Aha! experience for me. His book can be a "breaking open the head" kind of experience for anyone who approaches it with an open mind and a willingness to "test all things." The concepts to which this new thinking has led me reach back to my childhood, bringing many more pieces of the puzzle together for me.
With plenty of first (and second) hand descriptions of various entheogenic experiences, the book will satisfy hardcore psychonauts seeking validation or information, as well as wannabes seeking vicarious trip thrills. But interspersed throughout are brief, pithy observations on anthropological, sociological, religious, cultural, artistic, literary and philosophical viewpoints and phenomena which offer brilliant insights into the current state of human affairs (how we got to where we are) and suggest logical but unlikely scenarios for freeing ourselves and unleashing our potential.
Descriptions of his work as "anti-capitalist" are arguably accurate but a tad simplistic. Pinchbeck's illuminating light is shined not on the sociopolitical aspect of capitalism but rather on the sociopsychological materialism which has trapped citizens of the "developed" world en masse in its web of illusive pleasure reality.
Unlike lesser writers who might pass off some of the more obscure references as their own, Pinchbeck is quick to attribute his influences and sources, affording us a glimpse into his own intellectual and psychological development, which adds depth to his psychedelic journey.
This is a wonderful book for fans of shamanism and psychedelics, and is the PERFECT gift for martini-swilling swanks who scoff at the "irresponsibility" of their more explorative friends. Like the work of McKenna and Huxley and Huston Smith, it is more evidence that psychedelics appear to sharpen the brain, rather than fry it.