Welcome to the Shroomery Message Board! You are experiencing a small sample of what the site has to offer. Please login or register to post messages and view our exclusive members-only content. You'll gain access to additional forums, file attachments, board customizations, encrypted private messages, and much more!
Quote: "That humanity at large will ever be able to dispense with Artificial Paradises seems very unlikely. Most men and women lead lives at the worst so painful, at the best so monotonous, poor and limited that the urge to escape, the longing to transcend themselves if only for a few moments, is and has always been one of the principal appetites of the soul. Art and religion, carnivals and saturnalia, dancing and listening to oratory ? all these have served, in H. G. Wells?s phrase, as Doors in the Wall. And for private, for everyday use there have always been chemical intoxicants. All the vegetable sedatives and narcotics, all the euphorics that grow on trees, the hallucinogens that ripen in berries or can be squeezed from roots ? all, without exception, have been known and systematically used by human beings from time immemorial. And to these natural modifiers of consciousness modern science has added its quota of synthetics ? chloral, for example, and benzedrine, the bromides and the barbiturates.
Most of these modifiers of consciousness cannot now be taken except under doctor?s orders, or else illegally and at considerable risk. For unrestricted use the West has permitted only alcohol and tobacco. All the other chemical Doors in the Wall are labeled Dope, and their unauthorized takers are Fiends."
Aldus Huxley from The Doors of Perception ? 1954
the doors of perception is a mere 80 pages. yet so much of what we say and think about our "modifiers of consciousness" can be traced back to this tiny tome.
in the doors of perception, huxley writes among other things the following about one part of a mescalin trip:
Quote: . . . A small typing table stood in the center of the room; beyond it, from my point of view, was a wicker chair and beyond that a desk. The three pieces formed an intricate pattern of horizontals, uprights and diagonals ? a pattern all the more interesting for not being interpreted in terms of spatial relationships. Table, chair and desk came together in a composition that was like something by Braque or Juan Gris, a still life recognizably related to the objective world, but rendered without depth, without any attempt at photographic realism. I was looking at my furniture, not as the utilitarian who has to sit on chairs, to write at desks and tables, and not as the cameraman or scientific recorder, but as the pure aesthete whose concern is only with forms and their relationships within the field of vision or the picture space. . . [ok here he goes . . .] But as I looked, this purely aesthetic, Cubist's-eye view gave place to what I can only describe as the sacramental vision of reality. . . The legs, for example, of that chair ? how miraculous their tubularity, how supernatural their polished smoothness! I spent several minutes ? or was it several centuries? ? not merely gazing at those bamboo legs, but actually being them ? or rather being myself in them; or, to be still more accurate (for "I" was not involved in the case, nor in a certain sense were "they") being my Not-self in the Not-self which was the chair.
so later on huxley discribes taking a walk downtown where he finds a row of art books in the back of a drug store they wandered into. he says,
Quote: I picked up the first volume that came to hand. It was on Van Gogh, and the picture at which the book opened was "The Chair" ? that astounding portrait of a thing itself (Ding an Sich), which the mad painter saw, with a kind of adoring terror, and tried to render on his canvas. But it was a task to which the power even of genius proved wholly inadequate. The chair Van Gogh had seen was obviously the same in essence as the chair I had seen. But, though incomparably more real than the chairs of ordinary perception, the chair in his picture remained no more than an unusually expressive symbol of the fact. The fact had been manifested Suchness. . .