This book is just amazing. It illustrates abstract concepts vividly, and paints wildly changing pictures of a world with remarkable ease and fluidity. The Lathe of Heaven deals with eastern philosophical concepts of acceptance and self-knowledge. In fact, the title is taken from the Tao Te Ching, and short excerpts from this ancient and provoking work serve to introduce us to the concepts of each chapter. The Lathe of Heaven takes you on a journey with George Orr as he struggles to come to terms with his potential.
Initially, George is simply getting by in the world, struggling to live day by day, despite tremendously powerful dreams which occassionally cause his world to change in uncontrollable ways. Afraid he may cause more harm with these dreams, he seeks out the help of a psychiatrist. Dr. Haber has other ideas, however -- meaning well, although misguided, he attempts to control this power in order to shape reality to his own liking. Things progressively begin to worsen, until the world begins to collapse around them. All the while, George remains the same -- he, who appears weak and controllable at the outset through his accepting personality, is the only one who can cope as reality begins to crumble. What seemed to others a weakness is precisely what gives him strength.
All in all, a beautiful work of science fiction.