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Cleansing the Doors of Perception: The Religious Significance of Entheogentic Plants and Chemicals (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. April 2003

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  • Taschenbuch: 173 Seiten
  • Verlag: Sentient Pubn; Auflage: 3 (1. April 2003)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 1591810086
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591810087
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 15,5 x 1,2 x 23,1 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (3 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 405.444 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Cleansing the Doors of Perception is a fresh consideration of the age-old relationship between certain psychoactive plants and chemicals and mystical experience by one of the most trustworthy religious writers of our time. Author Huston Smith (most famous for his classic The World's Religions) is the Walter Cronkite of religion scholars. He has long believed that "drugs appear to be able to induce religious experiences" and that "it is less evident that they can produce religious lives." At the same time, he posits that "if ... religion cannot be equated with religious experiences, neither can it long survive their absence." Therefore, Smith's basic question about entheogens (a word he defines as "nonaddictive mind-altering substances that are approached seriously and reverently") is "whether chemical substances can be helpful adjuncts to faith." Cleansing the Doors does not offer one sustained argument in response to that question. Instead, the book collects Smith's many articles about this subject, and connects them with brief introductory essays. The writings gathered here range from personal testimony about Smith's own experience with entheogens to ethnographic work on the use of entheogens in India. Throughout, Smith's style conveys the wisdom and wonder that has guided his explorations of this strange, fascinating aspect of religious experience. --Michael Joseph Gross -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.


An examination of the link between psychedelic drugs and religious experiences throughout history summarizes the research of the twentieth century and shares the philosophies of such figures as Sigmund Freud and Saul Bellow. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.


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Von Peter am 23. August 2013
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
I have already stated in another critique, I believe this book and ''Entheogens and the future of religion'' should be mandatory reading for seriously interested religious minds.
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Von Ian Ryder am 25. Juni 2000
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book really made me reconsider my opinions and ideas regarding drug use. Huston Smith makes a very convincing argument that there can be some benefits to substances commonly refered to as pyschedelia
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Von Ian Ryder am 25. Juni 2000
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book will really challenge your ideas and opinions regarding non-addictive druguse. It changed my mind.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 16 Rezensionen
70 von 72 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Sober Look AT Spiritual Use of Entheogens 23. September 2000
Von Thomas M. Seay - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
As an advocate of the use of entheogens (psychedelics) as a means of expanding consciousness, I have to praise this book for several reasons.
One, due to Dr. Huston's reputation, many people who would not have considered psychedelics as a spiritual path will now have to take the spiritual use of these substances seriously.
Two for those of us who do use entheogens, Dr. Smith offers an interesting critique of the psychedelic movement of the 60s. He asks himself if the corrolary of "tune in" and "turn on" has to be "drop out".
He also underscores the importance of paying attention to "set" and "setting" (the attitude of the user and the physical environment in which the user takes the psychedelic). He rightly notes that a lot of people pay lip service to this idea without being rigorous in it's application. There seems to be a kind of libertarianism, even philistinism, in the contemporary psychedelic scene. We're going to explore alone without paying attention to the lessons from other cultures who have used these substances for thousands of years. Understandably we do so under the banner of authenticity, but I think we lose out. We should not ape or follow the lessons of those cultures dogmatically, but we should investigate them and heed what is good...especially about set and setting.
Third, he assigns psychedelics their proper place. They are tools. And like any tool, psychedelics work for some and not for others. Or they work for a time for us and then we need to leave them behind. Any way it goes, we are left with integrating the lessons learned from our psychedelic explorations into our everyday life.
This is a sober treatment of the role of psychedelics, not an absolute glorification. I love to dream and hypothesize along with Terence McKenna, but I also love the grounded nature of "Cleaning The Doors of Perception".
If you are interested in a serious discussion of psychedelics,please check out our webclub "Entheogens and Psychedelics" at [...]
24 von 24 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Fascinating Book 21. Februar 2001
Von Paul Fucich - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I found this book to be very interesting. Most of the people that I have known who are part of the "drug culture" (and by drug culture I mean anyone who partakes of any drug on a regular basis) would have no idea of the value of the chemistry covered in this book. Why?, Because our culture primarily abuses drugs. Personally I have not yet met an individual who did not use chemistry in conjunction with their dysfunction. Unfortunately, this book will be appreciated mainly by the few folks who have no serious chemical addiction. I loved this book and found it fascinating.
I was especially fascinated by the chapter on Stanislav Grof. I learned more about pure psychotherapy from this book than any book I have read on the subject.
This book speaks about cultures within cultures such as The Native American Church. It illuminates the fact that there are societies who use natures chemistry to fight drug addiction. Near the end of the book you hear the testimonials from the patrons of the Native American Church, and it is most enlightening.
This book is about religion, philosophy, psychology, the science of mind, and the study of reality--all in one short and sweet text. I found it very eye-opening and inspiring.
23 von 23 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Forbidden Doors 3. März 2001
Von Edmund Aaron Bravo - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
The third millenium is upon us; where humanity will be at its conclusion is anyone's guess. Huston Smith, a very well-repected religious scholar in the US, has taken a bold position on the topic of entheogens (psychedelics) by advocating their limited use in opening the mind to deep, spiritual experiences.
The book is loaded (no pun intended) with information concerning the historical significance of entheogens dating from the birth of the world's earliest religions in the Far East. Also included are fascinating accounts of his own powerful experience during the Good Friday event at Boston University.
If you are interested in, or have ever experienced forms of perception OTHER than the "default" setting in your own consciousness, this is an excellent book. The author's conviction that entheogens make possible ecstatic, mystical states which take one into the heart of cosmic awareness is genuine...and tempting.
22 von 25 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
On the Desire for Peak Experience 24. Mai 2002
Von Nicholas Croft - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
The book "Cleansing the Doors of Perception", is a collection of essays on the topic of entheogens, by the renowned scholar of world religions, Huston Smith.
The word 'Entheogen' was coined to describe the 'God Disclosing' properties, that certain plants and chemicals have, on people who invite such substances into their body.
Mr. Smith points out that if one compares descriptions of authentic mystical experience with descriptions provided by individuals influenced by an entheogen, that it would be difficult to make any distinction between the two.
A mystic, however, might suggest that 'God Disclosing' experiences are one possible aspect of relationship between an individual and an advanced spiritual being. When such experiences are consensual, being sought by both parties in question, then inspired revelations may exist between the two.
With an Entheogen, on the other hand, desire for a peak experience is primarily with one party and an advanced spiritual being is not necessarily consulted. While the desire is for a kind of 'cleansing', due to chemical impurities within these substances, the possible lack of spiritual preparation, and unforeseen complications within the setting, a peak experience is not necessarily guaranteed. Indeed, as Mr. Smith describes in the book, a hellish experience is a very real possibility.
My personal feeling is that it is better to seek peak experiences through meditations on religion, music, video art, film, consensual sex, and recreations such as mountain climbing. When an advanced spiritual being feels the need to disclose the possibility of bliss in your life, you might then be ready to receive her.
A Special Thanks to Mr. Smith for helping to elevate the dialog on this topic. "Cleansing the Doors of Perception" remains a unique contribution to this field of study.
10 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An Evolutionary Gem 6. Dezember 2001
Von Orva Schrock - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Huston Smith has had a front row seat in spiritual evolution for over 45 yrs now. In the present volume he makes clear that indeed entheogens can inspire and manifest and sustain true mystical knowing of what IT is. As a life long spiritual seeker, I experimented with a variety of entheogens for several years in my youth, I think this book makes a tremendous contribution for those of us who have used godconsciousness endgendering substances in the right way. What way is that? We should enter the experience with a pure and grateful heart. There comes a time, however, in authentic spritual life, when this too must be left behind if in fact we truly seek the highest realms of spiritual attainment. Thanks, Huston, you have said beautiful things some of us have experienced but can't make plain. Life is a mighty torrent of evolution and this book will help you,the sincere seeker, make the most of your own opportunity to live, enjoy, contribute, and SEE.
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