Aldous Huxley



Average: 4 (6 votes)
Fast Facts
aldoshaxley.jpg
Other Names and Nicknames: 
Aldous Leonard Huxley
Function: 
Writer
Traditions: 
Psychonautics, Vedanta, Vedanta Society, Transpersonal Psychology
Main Countries of Activity: 
UK, USA
Date of Birth: 
26 July 1894
Place of Birth: 
Godalming, Surrey, England
In His/Her Body ("alive"): 
No
Date Left His/Her Body: 
22 November 1963
Descendant Gurus: 
Other Related Gurus: 
Swami Prabhavananda

Biography

Aldous Huxley was an English writer, best known for his novels including Brave New World and a wide-ranging selection of essays including the well-known "The Doors of Perception" (attached).

Huxley is well known for his use of psychedelic drugs. In October 1930, the English occultist Aleister Crowley dined with Huxley in Berlin and introduced him to peyote. He was introduced to mescaline (the key active ingredient of peyote) by the psychiatrist Humphry Osmond in 1953, taking for his first time during the evening of May 5. Through Dr. Osmond, Huxley met millionaire Alfred Matthew Hubbard who would deal with LSD on a wholesale basis. On 24 December 1955, Huxley took his first dose of LSD. Indeed, Huxley was a pioneer of self-directed psychedelic drug use "in a search for enlightenment", famously taking 100 micrograms of LSD as he lay dying. His psychedelic drug experiences are described in the essays "The Doors of Perception" (the title deriving from some lines in the book "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell" by William Blake), and "Heaven and Hell". Some of his writings on psychedelics became frequent reading among early hippies.

During the 1930s, Huxley became interested in spiritual subjects such as parapsychology and philosophical mysticism, in particular Vivekanda's Neo-Vedanta and Universalism.

In 1937, Huxley moved to Hollywood, California with his family and a friend, Gerald Heard. Heard introduced Huxley to Vedanta, meditation, and vegetarianism through the principle of ahimsa. In 1938 Huxley befriended J. Krishnamurti, whose teachings he greatly admired.

Beginning in 1939 and continuing until his death in 1963, Huxley had an extensive association with the Vedanta Society of Southern California, founded and headed by Swami Prabhavananda. Together with Gerald Heard, Christopher Isherwood, and other followers he was initiated by the Swami and was taught meditation and spiritual practices.

In 1944 Huxley wrote the introduction to the "Bhagavad Gita: The Song of God", translated by Swami Prabhavanada and Christopher Isherwood, which was published by The Vedanta Society of Southern California.

From 1941 through 1960 Huxley contributed 48 articles to "Vedanta and the West", published by the Society. He also served on the editorial board with Isherwood, Heard, and playwright John van Druten from 1951 through 1962.

After the publication of "The Doors of Perception" (attached), Huxley and the Swami disagreed about the meaning and importance of the LSD drug experience, which may have caused the relationship to cool, but Huxley continued to write articles for the Society's journal, lecture at the temple, and attend social functions.

Teachings

-- No teachings were entered yet for this guru. Please help by clicking the Edit tab and adding teachings, theories, points of view, techniques and other messages related to the guru. --

Photos

Locations

-- No locations were entered yet for this guru. Please help by clicking the Edit tab and adding details about ashrams, centers, temples, satsangs and any other locations and events related to this guru. --

View Video

Books & Media

Recommended Books: 
Cover image

Brave New World

by Aldous Huxley

(Paperback)

Now more than ever: Aldous Huxley's enduring "masterpiece ... one of the most prophetic dystopian works of the 20th century" (Wall Street Journal) must be read and understood by anyone concerned with preserving the human spirit in the face of our "brave new world"

Aldous Huxley's profoundly important classic of world literature, Brave New World is a searching vision of an unequal, technologically-advanced future where humans are genetically bred, socially indoctrinated, and pharmaceutically anesthetized to passively uphold an authoritarian ruling order--all at the cost of our freedom, full humanity, and perhaps also our souls. “A genius [who] who spent his life decrying the onward march of the Machine” (The New Yorker), Huxley was a man of incomparable talents: equally an artist, a spiritual seeker, and one of history’s keenest observers of human nature and civilization. Brave New World, his masterpiece, has enthralled and terrified millions of readers, and retains its urgent relevance to this day as both a warning to be heeded as we head into tomorrow and as thought-provoking, satisfying work of literature. Written in the shadow of the rise of fascism during the 1930s, Brave New World likewise speaks to a 21st-century world dominated by mass-entertainment, technology, medicine and pharmaceuticals, the arts of persuasion, and the hidden influence of elites. 

"Aldous Huxley is the greatest 20th century writer in English." —Chicago Tribune

 

AttachmentSize
The Doors of Perception by Aldos Haxley.pdf219.83 KB