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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

"The Doors of Perception is a poignant book, partly because it reveals the human frailties and yearnings of a very cerebral writer" (Financial Times)

"You can look at Aldous Huxley and draw parallels with the Beatles: Crome Yellow and Those Barren Leaves were his breakthrough Merseybeat books, Point Counter Point was his 'Revolver', with The Doors of Perception his full-blown Sergeant Pepper trip. Like the Beatles, Huxley had so many ideas in his head that it was natural he would want to expand and experiment. What drugs provided for them both was not escape, but reevaluation" (The Times)

"There is nothing the pen of Huxley touches which it does not illuminate, and as the record of a highly civilised, brilliantly articulate man under the influence of an astonishing drug, The Doors of Perception is a tour de force" (Daily Telegraph) --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.

Présentation de l'éditeur

Half an hour after swallowing the drug I became aware of a slow dance of golden lights . . .

Among the most profound explorations of the effects of mind-expanding drugs ever written, here are two complete classic books—The Doors of Perception and Heaven and Hell—in which Aldous Huxley, author of the bestselling Brave New World, reveals the mind's remote frontiers and the unmapped areas of human consciousness. This new edition also features an additional essay, "Drugs That Shape Men's Minds," which is now included for the first time.

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 208 pages
  • Editeur : Harper Perennial Modern Classics (28 juillet 2009)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0061729078
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061729072
  • Dimensions du produit: 13,5 x 1,2 x 20,3 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 3.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 572 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Jean-Baptiste Martin le 10 janvier 2013
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
un peu répétitif, mais beaucoup d'informations intéressantes. la première partie me semble la plus pertinente. un grand auteur, c'est sûr!
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Andraz Sumrada le 2 avril 2014
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Ce livre est genial, it offers you a good glimpse into the world of mescaline... and like we heard in The Matrix: ”Mescaline... it's the only way to fly...“
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Par Namik le 28 août 2014
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Qualité de la couvertur et de la mise en page qui laisse à désirer pour ce que cela intéresse. Ce qui n'est pas mon cas, ce qui m'intéresse c'est le contenu. Et là problème, quelques fautes de typographie, décevant pour quelque chose d'aussi facile à corriger.
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1 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Amazon Customer le 22 juin 2012
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Un classique sur les effets de certaines drogues. Dommage que l'édition soit aussi austère (le livre est écrit en tout petit sur du papier de qualité moyenne). Par contre il est a conseillé à ceux qui s'intéresse à l'histoire de l'art ou à l'analyse d'oeuvre (notamment les passages sur les couleurs et les textures dans certains tableaux)... je pense qu'il peut s'agir d'une approche originale...
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 192 commentaires
252 internautes sur 260 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Credible Argument for Responsible Use of Hallucinogens 17 mars 1999
Par Michael R Gates - Publié sur
Format: Broché
In the first half of the book, DOORS OF PERCEPTION--originally a separate volume--Huxley offers a cogent and erudite argument for the use hallucinogens (specifically, mescaline) as a means for opening up the thinking mind to new ideas and perceptions, or even as a method for jumpstarting human creativity in the common man. Not only does he offer compelling historical precedents and sound medical research, but he also reveals positive details about his own personal experimentation with the drug. As is always the case with Huxley's essays, his various hypotheses are very articulately expressed and not easily dismissed.
The second part of the book, HEAVEN AND HELL--also originally published separately--Huxley introduces the idea that spiritual insight and personal revelation can also be achieved through the use of hallucinogens. (By the time he had written this volume, Huxley had added LSD to his psychedelic repertoire.) While just as articulately written and researched as the first volume, the idea that religious insight can be gained through drugs may offend some readers (theists and atheists alike), and the premise seems odd and contrived or expedient (was he trying to gain support of the clergy?) coming from a generally non-theist thinker-philosopher such as Huxley. Nevertheless, it is still thought-provoking reading for both professionals and amateurs interested in the positive potential of mind-altering drugs.
137 internautes sur 146 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Are you experienced? 25 mars 2006
Par Steven W. Cooper - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Huxley's `experiment' in The Doors of Perception was a right of passage for many in my generation, and it's interesting to have such an intelligent analysis of the experience. He does waste a lot of words on something that is indescribable, but it seems to have been written in the first blush of excitement. And Huxley makes some very sound observations, as well, that have probably helped many people reconcile their own indescribable experiences.

His conclusion that Mescalin and Lysergic Acid are relatively harmless for people in good health with an untroubled mind is probably objectionable today, especially among people who have never tried them. Looked at objectively, however, I wonder how this conclusion has stood the test of time. For myself, I believe he underestimated the long-term psychological challenges that cleansing those doors poses.

I remember something I read long ago from Philip K. Dick saying how difficult life is after you've seen God's face. The realization afterwards that you'd been forced back to a colorless, banal existence - a prison, if I recall the sense of what Dick wrote - must surely be considered one of the long-term psychological challenges that Huxley could not have fully appreciated when he wrote this book.

The feeling of being a prisoner in the normal world of perceptions might conceivably result in a hunger to return often to that `Antipodes of the mind' which, if felt too keenly, could cause permanent damage to be done to the mind's function as a `limiting valve.' This suggests to me that blaming acid casualties on a `troubled mind' may not be wholly satisfactory: some people choose to pack up their belongings and move to an island in Huxley's Antipodes, and these people can't always continue to function in the society their bodies continue to inhabit.

But the situation is complex: whether these `immigrants to the Antipodes' can continue to cope in the normal world is surely also a function of the society they live in. An American Indian tribe in the 1800's or Amsterdam today probably offer the mental émigré more of a chance for social survival than Riyadh, for example. One of the strengths of this book is to provide a good line of reasoning that explains why this might be true.

Heaven and Hell follows the extended, and appropriate, Blake reference. But to me this essay feels more like a long article you'd find in a magazine written by a cocky critic. Sure, there's much erudition on display and many valid aesthetic points are made; but the spirit behind it feels naïve: like many of the new ideas and associations that had formed in his mind hadn't had a chance to mellow and mature.

On the other hand, what seem like random observations to me may form a pattern I just didn't pick up on. Huxley was a smart cookie, and I wouldn't presume to speak authoritatively on his shortcomings.
42 internautes sur 46 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Mind-at-Large 5 septembre 2002
Par Esther Nebenzahl - Publié sur
Format: Broché
"The Doors of Perception" is probably the most popular non-fiction work on the subject of psychedelic experiences; it is based on first account records of the author's decision to experiment the consequences of intake of small amounts of mescalin, in an attempt to reach enlightenment and escape world's boredom. Being who he was, the result is a very interesting narrative in which the author expands on his not only scientific but also philosophical, religious, and artistic ideas.
The philosopher C.D.Broad suggested that our brains are genetically programmed to screen perceptions, selecting only those that are necessary for survival. By doing so, humans close the doors to what Huxley calls "Mind-at-Large," thereby loosing access to the world of unconsciousness and wonder. Only through the use of chemical substances can a human being free himself from his inherited limitations, experience the realms of supernaturally brilliant visionary experiences, and obtain total freedom from the ego. In this new stage of consciousness, spatial and time relationships cease to exist, whilst intensity, profundity of significance are augmented. Our everyday reliance on language petrifies perception because "however expressive, symbols can never be the things they stand for." There is a need for a less exclusively verbal system of education and "an occasional trip through some chemical Door in the Wall!"
Huxley's work is highly controversial and paradoxical. How are we to develop a science of perception if our language is not equipped to express that same perception? How are we to explain the differences in reaction to mescalin intake, ranging from peaceful and mystical to schizophrenic behavior? How are we to define individuals "with open minds and sound lives" who would be normally allowed to use chemical substances (drugs) with no risk involved? Let the reader keep in mind that this book was published back in 1954 and nowadays science is till dealing with these issues.
In order to give an anwer as to why individuals react differently to drug intake, Huxley worte "Heaven and Hell." According to him, for some "the ego doesn't melt like an iceberg in tropical waters, but expands to the point of suffocation;" only those who are free from negative emotions (fear, hatred, anger) have the door opened to visionary experience.
Aldous Huxley raises a number of interesting issues, not be taken as "chicken-soup for drugs," but rather as intellectual exercise for further thought and consideration as to what we most commonly refer to as "reality." His opinions and explanations may sometimes be considered "naive" and not fully elaborated, but merit goes to his audacity in exploring an area which to this day remains open to further understanding.
24 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Fantastic classic! 20 décembre 2002
Par "majnoon_" - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This book is truly a classic. It has a timeless quality and youth-like enthusiasm. Mr. Huxley does such a superb job at capturing the "feel" of the whole experience. He weaves wonderful prose with intriguing ideas. Not being an avid art aficionado, I was left a bit daunted with the numerous art references, but overall he has left me with a newfound interest in art.
Huxley touches on some good questions concerning psychoactive substances (and general "chemical vacations") and perception. I am intrigued with his idea of the brain acting as a sort of "reducing valve" for the whole of what could be perceived (experiencing "mind at large"). It is surely a quick read, but still packed full of philosophy, little tidbits, history and a myriad of other such though provoking ideas.
A great quote: "The need for frequent chemical vacations from intolerable selfhood and repulsive surroundings will undoubtedly remain." And Huxley does a wonderful job at explaining why this is so. This is a must read for anyone trying to understand the whole why and what for of hallucinogens, or for the aspiring philosopher, the general curious about life, mystery, etc. It is a necessary read.
174 internautes sur 215 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Interesting 12 septembre 2000
Par "gsibbery" - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This is an interesting book -- it is really two books in one -- "The Doors of Perception", in which Huxely recalls his first experience using mescalin, and "Heaven and Hell", which is considerably more speculative. Of the two, the latter is by far the better book. The former deals mainly with the mescalin experience itself, which I can assure you, is impossible to convey in print. One caveat here for potential psychonauts, however: Read Wilson's account of his own mescalin experiment in his "Beyond the Outsider" as well as Sartre's experiment with the drug. How one reacts to the chemical depends wildly upon one's own personality. Most people will not react the way that Huxely did, as he tended to intellectualise the whole world -- to think instead of doing. One cannot expect a simply blissful experience regardless of one's state of mind and personality -- these are factors in the trip. Huxely took a small dose and never suffered from ego dissolution common with higher doses. If he had, he may have had a greater insight into the ideas that he used in his "Perennial Philosophy". The Hindoos of India used to use soma (a undetermined psychoactive similar to mescalin in its effects) to achieve a sort of cosmic consciousness in which one regards oneself as being at one with the Brahman, the all-pervading universal spirit. What he did not mention is that mystics from many religious traditions mention that they can often get into states very similar to mescalin-induced ecstasies via meditation, something that is infinitely preferable to ingesting a foreign substance, as it is not of much use unless reproducible at will. His ideas in the latter volume are more along these lines, although he does mention some things that could be dangerous. He suggests that most people could benefit from a "mescalin holiday". I totally disagree. For the more indulgent, it could prove a disaster. Huxely was a man of exquisite self-control; others who do not possess such control may be in for problems if introduced to such a powerful drug (the "Beat" Poets come to mind). Also, to many it would be merely unsettling and disturbing, while for others a means of escape from the real world. His speculations about the brain being "Mind At Large", to use Broad's term, is intriguing, but offers no evidence in support of it. The notions that most religious experiences being closely related to the mescalin experience may prove insightful, but as for now, most use this book as an excuse for irresponsible recreational drug use. Comical, pathetic, even absurd at points, it nevertheless makes a point that many others fail to grasp, which he should have used to more effect in the "Perennial Philosophy" -- that at the heart of religion and human life, is an experience of reality which the conscious mind conceptualises until the world and life is less of an experience than a symbol. Zen students may find this perspective quite enlightening. For a more detailed look at psychoactive experimentation, see R. H. Ward's "A Drug Taker's Notes" and the notes from William James' experiment with Nitrous Oxide. Also, for information on reproducing the mescalin experience at will, look into research on Kundalini yoga and tantrism.
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