Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Tune in, turn on, drop out

Ann Marlowe reviews Robert Greenfield's biography of Timothy Leary and B. H. Friedman's Tripping: A Memoir at the New York Observer and finds the first "a powerful argument against the inchoate belief shared by many who have used psychedelics—and I was one—that tripping almost automatically makes you a better, more enlightened person. Though Mr. Greenfield maintains an evenhanded tone, the effect of his accumulation of detail is to show that Timothy Leary was a scumbag—a charming, energetic and inventive scumbag—despite decades of taking LSD."


  1. Far out!

    I don't know one person who used LSD to become a "better, more enlightened person." I do know plenty of people who used LSD to spend an afternoon or a weekend in an "altered state." Leary gave them permission, didn't he? The escalation by some of these kids/students to the use of much more serious drugs later is also part of Leary's legacy.

    A mortgage put me in an altered state.

    Anyone remember Nur? (I met him on the streets of NYC.) How about the book Be Here Now by Leary's buddy?

    Lynne AKA The Wicked Witch of Publishing

  2. Yeah, seriously: maybe I just don't have the metaphysical temperament, but surely the idea that tripping makes you more enlightened is complete rationalization and has absolutely no basis in reality? I suppose there are people who would disagree, but still....

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