Gary Lachman - A Secret History of Consciousness
For the last four centuries, science has tried to account for everything in terms of atoms and molecules and the physical laws they adhere to. Recently, this effort was extended to try to include the inner world of human beings. Gary Lachman argues that this view of consciousness is misguided and unfounded. He points to another approach to the study and exploration of consciousness that erupted into public awareness in the late 1800s. In this "secret history of consciousness," consciousness is seen not as a result of neurons and molecules, but as responsible for them; meaning is not imported from the outer world, but rather creates it. In this view, consciousness is a living, evolving presence whose development can be traced through different historical periods, and which evolves along a path to a broader, more expansive state. What that consciousness may be like and how it may be achieved is a major concern of this book . Lachman concentrates on the period since the late 1800s, when Madame Blavatsky first brought the secret history out into the open. As this history unfolds, we encounter the ideas of many modern thinkers, from esotericists like P. D. Ouspensky, Rudolf Steiner, and Colin Wilson to more mainstream philosophers like Henri Bergson, William James, Owen Barfield and the psychologist Andreas Mavromatis. Two little known but important thinkers play a major role in his synthesis-Jurij Moskvitin, who showed how our consciousness relates to the mechanisms of perception and to the external world, and Jean Gebser, who presented perhaps the most impressive case for the evolution of consciousness. An important contribution to the study of consciousness ... a must-read.
Zsuzsanna Emese Budapest - The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries
A women's spirituality classic now back in print! The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries is essential for Pagans, feminists, and women seeking to learn more about the spiritual path as it relates to the feminine and the Goddess aspects of witchcraft and Wicca. This book is not about reinstating a matriarchy or tearing down patriarchy; it is about women's spirituality and its relationship with politics and lifestyle. Z. Budapest is one of the founding mothers of modern women's witchcraft, beginning with the establishment of Susan B. Anthony Coven in Los Angeles in 1971. She catapulted herself into the media spotlight when she was tried as a witch and found guilty in 1975 after being arrested on Venice Beach for reading tarot cards. She fought the charges and, after a nine year battle, won the right for every tarot reader to do so legally. The Holy Book of Women's Mysteries is a seminal text that contains invaluable information on Dianic witchcraft and spells, including everyday magick, sabbat rituals, and divination methods; a section on how vegetarian theories and politics relate to witchcraft and the feminine aspect; and a good deal of information on goddesses and how the patriarchal religions distorted old myths to serve their own needs. There are several unique and beautiful Rites of Passage for women and men that you don't often find, and Budapest's personal life stories are an equally valuable read, from her escape across the mountains from Communist Hungary to her fight for women's religious freedom upon moving to America. * This reprint features a new introduction by Z. Budapest, in addition to essays by luminaries such as Starhawk and Merlin Stone.
Ismeretlen szerző - The Matrix and Philosophy
The many faces of Keanu Reeves as hero Neo-Christ, Buddha, Socrates-are explored in these essays on the philosophical implications of the sci-fi martial arts blockbuster The Matrix, collected by the editor of Seinfeld and Philosophy and The Simpsons and Philosophy. According to the academics assembled here, when messianic hacker Neo kick-boxes the Matrix's virtual-reality dream-prison, he is really struggling with some of mankind's biggest conundrums: the nature of truth and reality, the possibility of free will, the mind-body problem and the alienation of labor in late-capitalist society. The tacit goal here is to make philosophy fun for the general reader by orienting it to pop-culture reference points, so while some articles contain rather dense philosophical jargon, most are pitched at the level of a freshman intro course. But only a few chapters delve into the movie's aesthetics; the rest seem to use The Matrix as a peg on which to hang a canned philosophy lecture. The results are occasionally engaging, as with David Mitsuo Nixon's nifty refutation of the "reality is just an illusion" conceit, but they're too often dryly academic and liable to elicit no more than a drowsy "whoa" from the movie's legions of fans. Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Iris Murdoch - Under the Net
Iris Murdoch’s first novel is a gem – set in a part of London where struggling writers rub shoulders with successful bookies, and film starlets with frantic philosophers. Its hero, Jake Donaghue, is a likable young man who makes a living out of translation work and sponging off his friends. A meeting with Anna, an old flame, leads him into a series of fantastic adventures.
Théun Mares - The Mists of Dragon Lore
What is true belief in self? How can we learn to believe enough in our own abilities to follow our own dreams with total conviction? What can we do to break free from our self-limiting doubts and fears - all that stops us from realising our full potential? The Mists of Dragon Lore, by Theun Mares, describes how we are imprisoned within the common dream - slaves to our past conditioning, with little control over our thoughts, feelings and reactions. In this book Theun Mares shows how we can use the techniques of the Warrior's Path to recognise the nature of the dream and gain the belief and confidence in ourselves to wake up to our full potential and claim our freedom. Once we have woken up in the dream - once we have started to realise our potential - Theun shows how we can take full control of the circumstances of our lives and carve out a unique life, based on our own dream - a life filled with joy and meaning. Topics include: Waking up in the common dream. How to acquire enough belief in self to control the contents of the dream. How to acquire the true honour of the warrior. The life challenge of stepping into the unknown. The powerful technique of learning to shift the focus. The meaning and existence of alternative worlds, and the mysteries surrounding the 21 different aspects of awareness.
Ismeretlen szerző - The Poetics of Transubstantiation
The essays in this collection explore the concept of 'transubstantiation,' its adaptations and transformations in English and European culture from the Elizabethans to the twentieth century. Favoring an interartistic and comparative perspective, a wide range of critical approaches, from the philosophical to the semiological, from cultural materialism to gender and queer studies, it is brought to bear on authors ranging from Descartes, Shakespeare, Joyce, to Macpherson, Madox Ford, and Winterson, as well as on contemporary sculpture and an Italian adaptation of Conrad for the screen in and unusually comic vein. The volume, edited by Douglas Burnham of Staffordshire University and by Enrico Giaccherini of Pisa University, will be of interest to those concerned with the cultural history of Christianity and with the remarkable critical and theoretical insights generated by contemporary approaches to this traditional theme.
Stephen W. Hawking - A Brief History of Time
Brief History of Time, published in 1988, was a landmark volume in science writing and in world-wide acclaim and popularity, with more than 9 million copies in print globally. The original edition was on the cutting edge of what was then known about the origins and nature of the universe. But the ensuing years have seen extraordinary advances in the technology of observing both the micro - and the macrocosmic world - observations that have confirmed many of Hawking's theoretical predictions in the first edition of his book. Now a decade later, this edition updates the chapters throughout to document those advances, and also includes an entirely new chapter on Wormholes and Time Travel and a new introduction. It make vividly clear why A Brief History of Time has transformed our view of the universe.
Stephen W. Hawking - Leonard Mlodinow - The Grand Design
The three central questions of philosophy and science: Why is there something rather than nothing? Why do we exist? Why this particular set of laws and not some other? No one can make a discussion of such matters as compulsively readable as the celebrated University of Cambridge cosmologist Hawking (A Brief History of Time). Along with Caltech physicist Mlodinow (The Drunkard's Walk), Hawking deftly mixes cutting-edge physics to answer those key questions. For instance, why do we exist? Earth occupies a "Goldilocks Zone" in space: just the perfect distance from a not-too-hot star, with just the right elements to allow life to evolve. On a larger scale, in order to explain the universe, the authors write, "we need to know not only how the universe behaves, but why." While no single theory exists yet, scientists are approaching that goal with what is called "M-theory," a collection of overlapping theories (including string theory) that fill in many (but not all) the blank spots in quantum physics; this collection is known as the "Grand Unified Field Theories." This may all finally explain the mystery of the universe's creation without recourse to a divine creator. This is an amazingly concise, clear, and intriguing overview of where we stand when it comes to divining the secrets of the universe.
John Gribbin - Deep Simplicity
'One is left feeling even more - if this is possible - filled with admiration for science and delight at the world it investigates' The world around us can be a complex, confusing place. Earthquakes happen without warning, stock markets fluctuate, weather forecasters seldom seem to get it right. How do we make sense of it all? John Gribbin reveals our seemingly random universe is actually built on simple laws of cause and effect that can explain why, for example, just one vehicle breaking down can cause a traffic jam; why wild storms are caused by a slight atmospheric change; even how we evolved from the most basic of materials. Like a Zen painting, a fractal image or the pattern on a butterfly's wings, simple elements form the bedrock of a sophisticated whole. Synthesising chaos and complexity theory for the perplexed, _Deep Simplicity_ brilliantly illuminates the harmony underlying our existence.
Ernest Becker - The Denial of Death
Winner of the Pulitzer prize in 1974 and the culmination of a life's work, The Denial of Death is Ernest Becker's brilliant and impassioned answer to the "why" of human existence. In bold contrast to the predominant Freudian school of thought, Becker tackles the problem of the vital lie -- man's refusal to acknowledge his own mortality. In doing so, he sheds new light on the nature of humanity and issues a call to life and its living that still resonates more than twenty years after its writing.
Ursula Groll - Swedenborg And New Paradigm Science
Ursula Groll relates the metaphysical thought of Emanuel Swedenborg to current New Paradigm science, especially to the interface of science and spirituality. By providing extensive excerpts from Swedenborg's works and drawing parallels between his visionary insights and the works of philosophers and physicists such as David Bohm, Fritjof Capra, Rupert Sheldrake, and Albert Einstein, Groll shows how Swedenborg's voyage of discovery led him increasingly from the great to the small, from the outer to the inner, until he discovered the mirror of the universe, the seat of the Divine as the source of truth.
Carl Sagan - The Demon-Haunted World
How can we make intelligent decisions about our increasingly technology-driven lives if we don't understand the difference between the myths of pseudoscience and the testable hypotheses of science? Pulitzer Prize-winning author and distinguished astronomer Carl Sagan argues that scientific thinking is critical not only to the pursuit of truth but to the very well-being of our democratic institutions. Casting a wide net through history and culture, Sagan examines and authoritatively debunks such celebrated fallacies of the past as witchcraft, faith healing, demons, and UFOs. And yet, disturbingly, in today's so-called information age, pseudoscience is burgeoning with stories of alien abduction, channeling past lives, and communal hallucinations commanding growing attention and respect. As Sagan demonstrates with lucid eloquence, the siren song of unreason is not just a cultural wrong turn but a dangerous plunge into darkness that threatens our most basic freedoms.
Marcelo Gleiser - The Prophet and the Astronomer
From the beginning of time people have looked to the heavens to find order in the universe and divine meaning and direction from celestial events. The same skies that used to instil fear in the ancient prophets today spawn a rich apocalyptic science for awestruck stargazers. This book explores the shared quest of prophets and astronomers to explain the strange phenomena of our skies - from the apocalypse foretold in Revelations to modern science's identification of multiple cataclysmic threats, including the impact of comets and asteroids on earthly life, the likelihood of future collisions, the meaning of the solar eclipse and the death of stars, the implications of black holes for time travel and the ultimate fate of the universe and time.
William Wordsworth - The Prelude
First published in July 1850, shortly after Wordsworth's death, The Prelude was the culmination of over fifty years of creative work. The great Romantic poem of human consciousness, it takes as its theme 'the growth of a poet's mind': leading the reader back to Wordsworth's formative moments of childhood and youth, and detailing his experiences as a radical undergraduate in France at the time of the Revolution. Initially inspired by Coleridge's exhortation that Wordsworth write a work upon the French Revolution, The Prelude has ultimately become one of the finest examples of poetic autobiography ever written; a fascinating examination of the self that also presents a comprehensive view of the poet's own creative vision.
Patricia Duncker - Hallucinating Foucault
The love between a writer and a reader is never celebrated. It cannot be proven to exist. Hallucinating Foucault is a love story, a mystery and a quest. It is a gripping tale of a mad writer, the glamorous, scandalous Paul Michel, enfant terrible of French letters and the reader who sets out to find him. The search begins in the archives of university libraries, enters the forbidden spaces of a French asylum, moves onwards into the storms of late summer in Provence and ever deeper into the labyrinth of memory. Passionate and controversial, hallucinating Foucault crosses the frontiers of gender and sexuality, explores the limits of madness and desire and affirms the boundless loyalty of a reader's love - it is a remarkable book that goes to the very heart of the creative act.
Ismeretlen szerző - Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy
Should the Chesire Cat's grin make us reconsider the nature of reality? * Can Humpty Dumpty make words mean whatever he says they mean? * Can drugs take us down the rabbit-hole? * Is Alice a feminist icon? _Alice's Adventures in Wonderland_ has fascinated children and adults alike for generations. Why does Lewis Carroll introduce us to such oddities as blue caterpillars who smoke hookahs, cats whose grins remain after their heads have faded away, and a White Queen who lives backwards and remembers forwards? Is it all just nonsense? Was Carroll under the influence? This book probes the deeper underlying meaning in the Alice books, and reveals a world rich with philosophical life lessons. Tapping into some of the greatest philosophical minds that ever lived - Aristotle, Hume, Hobbes, and Nietzsche - _Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy_ explores life's ultimate questions through the eyes of perhaps the most endearing heroine in all of literature.
John Stuart Mill - On politics and society
Although he wrote extensively for fifty years, Mill's reputation as the philosopher of liberalism is largely based on three books published within a short space of five years: On liberty (1859); Considerations on representative government (1861); Utilitarianism (1863). Such a selective record offers a very partial view of Mill's scope as a political theorist, and one that largely ignores the restless and questioning approach which was central to his work. In John Stuart Mill on politics and society Geraint L. Williams provides a new selection from the whole range of Mill's political writings to present a comprehensive view both of the structure of Mill's thought and of the development of his political thinking from the 1820s to the 1870s.
John Locke - Two treatises of government
John Locke laid the groundwork of modern liberalism. He argued that political societies exist to defend the lives, liberties, and properties of their citizens, and that no government has any authority except by the consent of the people. When rulers become tyrants and act against the common good, then the people have a right of revolution against them. Writing against the backdrop of Charles II's savage purge of the Whig movement, Locke set out to attack monarchical absolutism and demolished the intellectual fabric of the divine right of rulers.
Iris Murdoch - The Unicorn
When Marian Taylor takes a post as governess at Gaze Castle, a remote house upon a beautiful but desolate coast, she finds herself confronted with a number of weird mysteries and involved in a drama she only partly understands. Some crime or catastrophe in the past still keeps the house, like the castle of the Sleeping Beauty, under a spell, whose magic also touches the neighbouring house of Riders, inhabited by a scholarly recluse. Marian's employer, Hannah, and her retainers, seem to be acting out some tragic pattern: but it is not clear whether Hannah herself, the central figure, the Unicorn, is innocent victim or violent author, saint or witch... In a novel that has all the beauty of a fairy story and the melodrama of a Gothic tale, Murdoch explores the fantasies and ambiguities which beset those who are condemned to be passionately abandoned and yet hopelessly imperfect in their search for God.