The Politics of Ecstasy

By Timothy Leary, R.U. Sirius, Tom Robbins

632 ratings - 3.82* vote

Writings that sparkle with the psychedelic revolution. The Politics of Ecstasy is Timothy Leary's most provocative and influential exploration of human consciousness, written during the period from his Harvard days to the Summer of Love. Includes his early pronouncements on the psychedelic movement and his views on social and political ramifications of psychedelic and mystical experience.Here is the outspoken Playboy interview revealing the sexual power of LSD-a statement that many believe

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Book details

Paperback, 240 pages
Published September 4th 1998 by Ronin Publishing

(first published January 1st 1968)

Original Title
The Politics of Ecstasy
ISBN
1579510310 (ISBN13:9781579510312)

Community Reviews

Kip Williams

A 1968 edition I've had laying around since 1984. You know what, I wish Tim was right about the effects of psychedelics on our society. He predicted a new religious explosion as each man, woman, and child explored their own consciousness, transforming themselves into their personal Buddha or Lao Tzu. Mostly, we just went to jail and then cognitive therapy and career counseling. Still, acid did have the power to change. It was society that didn't.

Wersly

This book is fucking ridiculous, and I mean that in the best way possible.

Ian Willis

I'm rating this a little higher than I probably would normally on account of it being such an important historical artifact. Parts of this are excellent, for instance the Playboy Interview. What a fantastic piece of history! And some of his points on Herman Hesse's work as well make reading this worthwhile, though in general I would say it's a little repetitive and overly optimistic. I get WHY he was overly optimistic, he was aiming for something, but it's a bit sad almost 50 years later to see that the psychedelic revolution he was predicting "in just a few years" hasn't arrived and is just barely being decriminalized on the lowest of levels with marijuana in a few states. If you're looking for a good book on consciousness that is heavily influenced by Leary and his psychedelic experience then Robert Anton Wilson's book Prometheus Rising is much more useful and direct. As well I'll mention Thaddeus Golas "The Lazy Man's Guide to Enlightenment" as an invaluable tool in avoiding bad trips. But this book, of course, is excellent as a rich viewpoint from the smarter (if a bit deluded) side at an amazing point in time 1962-1968.

Isil

http://okudumdanoldu.blogspot.be/2012...

Zaten daha kitaba başlamadan Tom Robbins'in önsözünü görünce "haaaah tamam" dedim..

Bu sefer kitabı henüz bitirmeden parti parti yazmayı uygun buluyorum. Bu kitap biraz derleme gibi aslında. Değişik bölümleri var. En başlarında daha çok "dini aydınlanma"lardan bahsediyor. 'Din' derken ideolojik günümüz dinlerinden bahsetmiyorum. Krishnamurti'nin bahsettiği tarzda bir Tanrı'ya ulaşma ve dini yaşama olgusu var. Her neyse..

Timothy Leary, 60lı yıllarda politikacılar, din adamları, rahibeler ve rahipler, öğrenciler, doktorlar, yazarlar, sanatçılarla LSD deneyleri yapıp günümüzde hala çıkan saygın akademik bilimsel dergilerde yayınlar yapmış, Harvard Universitesi'ne görevli bir psikolog. Daha sonra zihin uyarıcı maddelerin yasaklanmasıyla birlikte zaten Harvard'dan da atılıyor ve kendi derneğini kuruyor. Yaptığı deneyler yüzünden eleştiriliyor, cezalara çarptırılıyor vesaire. Gelgelelim kanımca, savaş gibi mantıksız bir olaya asker yollayan bir hükümetten daha zararlı değil.

Genel olarak baktığımızda savunduğu düşünce, algı açıcı ve zihin uyarıcı kimyasalların devlet kontrollü ve serbest olması. Diğer bir önemli nokta ise, bu işi zaman içinde kurulacak merkezlerde mutlaka ve mutlaka uzman gözetimi altında yapılması gerektiği. Kitap boyunca kendi deneyimleriyle beraber, başkalarının deneyimlerini ve pozitif/negatif etkilerini detaylıca anlatmış. Deneyim örneği olarak Aldous Huxley'nin Doors of Perception kitabı verilebilir.

LSD etkisi altındayken olan her şeyi çok detaylıca fiziksel yönüyle anlatmış. Sade 'varoluş'un farkındalığı, seanstaki diğer insanlarla oluşturulan derin bağlar, din adamlarının yaşadığı 'dini aydınlanma'lar ve daha bir sürü şey..

8. bölümü anne ve babaların okumasını öneriyorum. Her ne kadar farklı bir yüzyılda da yaşasak, yani verilen örnekler aslında anne-babaların anne-babalarıyla yaşadıkları problemler üzerine olsa da, jenerasyon çatışmasına farklı bir yaklaşım olarak şimdikiler de okusun.

Daha sonra politikacılar ve insanların politik eğilimlerinin çocuklarına olan etkileri hakkında inanılmaz bir sosyolojik analiz var. Tabii bunları yazıldığı tarihe göre değerlendirmek ve üzülmek lazım. 60ların gençlerine ne kadar güvenmiş; güç ve para uğruna yapılan saçmalıkları ve zarar gören insanların olduğu toplumu değiştireceklerine inanmış. Anne ve babaları tarafından televizyonla veya politikayla veya dinle uyutulan çocukların uyanışının LSD veya başka zihin açıcı uyuşturucularla mümkün olduğunu savunuyor. Çünkü bu kimyasallar etkisinde insan hayatında çok önemli bir deneyim yaşıyor. Yarattığımız "para, güç, petrol, yasa" vesaire gibi şeylerden çok yukarda, çok insani bir deneyim. Bu deneyimi yaşayan bir insanın asla eskisi gibi olamayacağını, saf bir hümanist olacağını söylüyor. Elbette daha sonra bu maddelerin yasaklanmasıyla "viski ve sigaracı" orta sınıfın kazandığı bir kavga var. Kitap yazıldıktan kırk yıl sonra bunu daha net bir şekilde görebiliyoruz. Yani aslına bakarsanız her şey çiçek çocuk olmaktan, bütün gün hiçbir şey yapmadan sevişmekten ibaret değil. Bu konular veya genel olarak "insan" üzerine oturup düşünmeyen bizler için çok değişik bir kapı.

Poet of the Interior Journey bölümünde ise Hermann Hesse'nin Siddharta kitabına değinilmiş. Kitabı okuduysanız, okuyup da anlamadığınız kısımlara biraz ışık tutacaktır diye düşünüyorum. Özellikle de sonunda Govinda'yla karşılaşma sahnelerinde Govinda'nın gördüğü "herşeyin bir arada olması" kısmı. Daha sonra yazarın "Doğu Yolculuğu" ve "Bozkırkurdu" kitaplarını da aynı şekilde işlemiş. Bozkırkurdu zaten yanımda ve böylece listenin hemen önüne geçiriyoruz.

Kitabın en son bölümü de bayağı ilginç. Bir röportajını derlemişler. Kendisine açılan marijuana davasında yaptığı savunmalarla başlıyor ama aslında genel olarak savunduğu her şey de özetlenmiş. Hepsini okumaya üşenenler için adamın savunduklarıyla ilgili bu son bölümü, genel olarak maddenin etkisi için de "She Comes in COlors" bölümünü tavsiye ederim.

Şimdi bu kitap ilk kez 1971'de yayınlanmış. İçerdiği bölümlerin bir kısmı 60ların başına ait. Biraz gelgitli ama şunu da unutmamak gerek. O kadar uyuşturucuya rağmen Timothy Leary tee 1995'te prostat kanserinden ölüyor. Yani arada bir bilgisayar ve internet çağı patlaması var. Daha sonra toplumun yeni LSD'si diye tanımlamış. Söylemek istediğim, zamanla insan biraz yön değiştirebiliyor, özellikle de teknolojinin son 20 30 yılda yaptığı atakla. Bunu bilerek okunmalı.

Son bir not olarak, Timothy Leary öldüğünde küllerini uzaya gönderdiler. Şu anda bu bir hizmet sektörü ve aman aman da pahalı değil ama ilk o yapmış..

..Your "ego" is to your brain what the planet earth is to our galaxy with its 100,000 million suns...Sayfa41

..The LSD ecstasy the joyful discovery that ego, with strivings, is only a fraction of my identity. is its pitiful shams and strivings, is only a fraction of my identity..Sayfa36

..There is no form of energy which does not come in the same rhythm. Yin. Yang. In. Out. The galaxy itself and every structure within it is a binary business, an oscillating dance. Start.Stop...Sayfa40

..The whiskey-drinking menopausal imprison the pot-smoking youth...Sayfa89

...THE TWO COMMANDMENTS FOR THE MOLECULAR AGE
I: Thou shalt not alter the consciousness of thy fellow man.
II: Thou from altering shalt not prevent thy fellow man his own consciousness...Sayfa95

Playboy Roportajindan:
..LSD is not an automatic trigger to sexual awakening, however. The first 10 times you take it, you might not be able to have a sexual experience at all, because you're so overwhelmed and delighted or frightened and confused by the novelty; the idea of having sex might be irrelevant or incomprehensible at the moment. But it depends upon the setting and the partner. It is almost inevitable, if a man and his mate take LSD together, that their sexual energies will be unimaginably intensified, and unless clumsiness or fright on the part of one or the other blocks it, it will lead to a deeper experience than they ever thought possible..Sayfa130

..Leary: No one has the right to tell anyone else what he should or should not do with this great and last frontier of freedom. I think that anyone who wants to have a psychedelic experience and is willing to prepare for it and to examine his own hang-ups and neurotic tendencies should be allowed to have a crack at it...Sayfa151

..Before your LSD session, read Siddhartha and Steppenwolf. The last part of the Steppenwolf is a priceless manual..Sayfa192


..I intend to have more children, and I'll tell you this, that I'm not going to push symbols on my kids I won't keep anything away from them, but I'm not going to push symbols on my kids till they're ten, twelve, maybe fifteen years old. I will never encourage them to read a book. I will encourage them to tune in on their own internal vocabularies and cellular Libraries of Congress. I'll teach them how to live as an animal and as a creature of nature and decode and communicate with the many energies around them, before I will force artifactual symbols which are only 200 or 300 years old at best on their 2-billion-year-old cellular machineries...Sayfa207

..And that, dear Paul, is the lesson of evolution which my cells
have taught me. Balance: competition, mutual cannibalism and, above all, protection of the young of all species...Sayfa221

Catnaitab

I'd probably give it a 3.5. Some of the ideas are really interesting and I do agree/admire some of the conclusions (e.g. the idea of each person being their own God, - in charge of our own life - how one can see God in the molecules that make up the world, also of course how drugs change our consciousness, not just his "favourite", LSD, but also alcohol, narcotics and how these connect to other religions and to how social reality is a "completely artificial closed circuit - a consensual paranoia fabricating its own illusions") although some seem a bit too radical or too dogmatic/ one-dimensional. Some of the writing is quite funny, especially when it mentions the stupid behaviour of society - police, the "whisky-drinking menopausal". However some of the predictions are a bit too optimistic and his message can be a bit repetitive. Some chapters are obviously better than others and towards the end one might feel that one has heard most of this before, but that also shows how well Timothy Leary manages to get his view of the world across.
I guess that one of the things with which I agreed the most, and believe to be a wonderful message is:
"Be God yourself, if you can, but do not impose your divinity on others."

Colleen Stone

I give "The Politics of Ecstasy" a 5 star rating despite the fact that I haven't read it since the early 70s and can't remember much of it (if you can remember the 70s, you weren't there). What I do remember is that it was a little technical for my likings. It's attempts to chronicle the effects of LSD was as unexciting for me as "The Kinsey Report"s attempts to pin sexual response to paper.

So why the 5 stars? Well, it was just one of the books you HAD to read back then. It was a pillar of the canon, like "The Electric Cool Aid Acid Test", "On the Road", Carlos Castanedas series of books, "The Whole Earth Catalogue" and a bunch of others that don't spring readily to mind.

These books inspired a generation to think more openly, to embrace change and to challenge established authorities and expectations. These books CHANGED THE WORLD.
That's got to be worth 5 stars!

Jen

I first read this in 1970 when I was young. This is the copy I still have on my book shelf and you can see how well read it was. We carried it round with us and quoted it like a bible. Obviously, I was of the generation and we did tune in, turn on and drop out. It may seem dated to many who were not there, but for us it was the best instruction manual ever! :)

Franklin

An incomparable before and after which made reality explode.

Human existence - is tagged, labeled, bought, sold, stolen,
enslaved - and that's how it has been through the eons.

LSD unravels human consciousness and shows many, many other paths that are probably better.

Leary also explains that humans are less open to transformative change after they reach the age of 30. He was quirky, humble and full of jojo - and Book of the Dead - well, so much change was forcing the establishment to bend - but he acted totally freely - as a God - and this made the authorities to come after him,
and eventually he is arrested and sent to prison - for possession of a couple joints.

There is revelation of so much - open your and your ass will follow.

Scott Holstad

Typical Leary -- some things genius, some things ya gotta just wonder ... acid burnout? Recommended.

Gerry

Far out

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