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Bodhi Heeren (Copenhagen)
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Adi Da: The Promised God-Man Is Here
Adi Da: The Promised God-Man Is Here
by Carolyn Lee
Edition: Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Devotional book about a left-hand master, 6 Feb. 2014
Adi Da Samraj aka Da Free John aka Franklin Jones must truly be one of the most controversial masters ever. On one side making the most grandiose claims about himself as the long awaited Avatar (divine incarnation) and world savior. On the other side engaging in wild and 'reckless' behavior, encouraging sex orgies and filming them and a lot stuff like that. Almost making other crazy masters like Osho and Gurdieff look saintly and moderate.

As in all books from his devotees this official biography is kept in a very obedient and reverend tone which takes some swallowing from the rest of us to get used to and accept. And as in other books about Adi Da it is filled with grandiose claims, including that it was primarily thanks to Adi Da's intense sadhana (spiritual practice) the whole fall of the communist bloc came about. Well, some history books have to be rewritten for sure, lol.
Likewise Adi Da seems to have had more or less full command of the weather and the ability to stop wars (although he mainly used this gift to stop wars where American lifes were at risk).

But despite all this no doubt Adi Da was a highly evolved, enlightened being. Many of his teachings profound and deep and definitely pointing to valuable truths and comprising significant pointers on the way.

The problem is though that Carolyn Lee just as Adi Da himself presents his teachings as absolutely unique where for the un-initiated they seem to be a mixture of advaita and guru yoga. Placing the highest emphasis on surrender and devotion to Da himself, not unlike the tradition he followed in his youth: the siddha yoga of Swami Muktanada and his predecessors.

Adi seems a person that either get glorified or vilified - not unlike other crazy masters - and while we still lack a more 'objective' analysis of his work and teaching this well-written book seems one of the best introductions to this complex and intriguing spiritual Master.

Croz [+digital booklet]
Croz [+digital booklet]
Price: £7.99

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Crosby rules, 28 Jan. 2014
Whereas Neil Young's psychedelic pill and Stephen Still's The Rides have been rather nostalgic efforts David Crosby keeps his freak flag high with "Croz". Although the style is much like CPR: elegant West Coast with a hint of Steely Dan the songs are fresh, the lyrics intelligent, his voice in finest shape.

Backed by the current CSN rhythm section Kevin McCormick om some elegant bass, Stevie D. on drums and son James Raymond - who also acts as co-producer and writer - on keyboards no one can argue against the musical quality. Add some discreet but prolific guest spots by the likes of Mark Knopfler and Wynton Marsalis and I think this is going to be an album that will stand the test of time and probably only be growing. Surely it will not be a grammy succes like McCartney's "New" but definitely another testament that age is not a hindrance for creativity.

A few of the songs have been road tested "Slice Of Time" and "Radio" with CN and CSN but all of the songs sounds mature with not a false note around.

Giving his often told background and history it's amazing Crosby is still alive - even more amazing he seems to be stronger than ever.

Confrontation with the Unconscious: Jungian Depth Psychology and Psychedelic Experience (Muswell Hill Press)
Confrontation with the Unconscious: Jungian Depth Psychology and Psychedelic Experience (Muswell Hill Press)
by Scott J. Hill
Edition: Paperback
Price: £16.02

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Jung and psychedelics, 21 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Many books have been written lately about psychedelics, mainly falling into two categories. One enthusiastic endorsing layman use of mindexpanding substances, taking Timothy Leary and Terence McKenna as their rolemodels Psychedelia - An Ancient Culture, A Modern Way Of Lifeor trying to make them acceptable for mainstream culture by completely downplaying their transcendent aspects Psychedelic Healing: The Promise of Entheogens for Psychotherapy and Spiritual Development.

Compared with books like the above mentioned Scott Hill's work about Jung and the relevance of a Jungian approach to Psychedelic experiences is a serious and worthwhile enterprise. Originally written as a Ph.D thesis it is nonetheless well written and accesible. And having a rather personal tone as the main theme of the book seems to be the attempt of the author to come to terms with some 'bad trips' in his youth where he contemplated suicide.

Whereas most psychedelic therapists have great respect for Jung the man himself took a negative attitude towards the use of chemical aids to the therapeutic process. The books strength may lie in it's thorough and intelligent discussion of Jung's theories and their possible use in psychedelig therapy especially the confrontation with archetypical material and the collective unconscious.

The weak spot seems to me to be that he forgets or overlooks that archetypes are only one of a wide range of transpersonal phenomena that can happen under the influence of entheogenics. In cases where people relive their birth or a past life, experience themself as an animal or become one with the "magnificent void" trying to reinterpret it in a symbolic way using Jungian ideas would be a completely misleading and barren process.

Certainly an important book that should be read by everyone interested in a sincere and repsonsible use of psychedelia.

Tripping the Bardo with Timothy Leary: My Psychedelic Love Story
Tripping the Bardo with Timothy Leary: My Psychedelic Love Story
by Joanna Harcourt-Smith
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.72

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating and honest, 30 Dec. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
No doubt Joanna Hartcourt-Smith has lived a life rather far removed from 'normal'. Grown up in jet set, money-aristocratic milieu. And telling a story that could sound like a Jackie Collins novel. Filled with sexual abuse - starting with her mother's chauffeur when she was 11 - a grandfather that killed her grandmother and got away with it and lots of aimless drinking, drug usage and money spending. But doing it with an honesty and integrity that lifts it far above just trivial sounding clichés.

In 1973 she hooked up with Timothy Leary who definitely knew how to 'score', telling Joanna that he ahd dreamed her up while in prison and that she was "the most intelligent woman in Europe". And initating her to the deeper aspects of LSD.

While Leary's own CONFESSIONS OF A HOPE FIEND "Learytells the story of his escape from jail and his time in Marocco Joanna's book continues from there meeting him during his stay in Switzerland. And following him on his hopeless and unrelaistic journey seeking refugee in Afghanistan.

From there on the story gets a nasty turn when Leary was 'kidnapped' and returned to jail and Joanna did all she could to get him free. Finally adopting the strategy of cooperation and turning snitches/informers. All done in a haze of drugs and sex. She could be called Hardcore-Smith. Apparently she never said no to any man at least not if he were powerful and influential enough. But also the many sexscenes are depicted in an honest way.

Even though she explicitly says she is not out to defame Leary he do come across as a person addicted to drugs and unable to rely on his inner strength without them. In the end selling out to save his life. After which he denounced both the hippie-movement, the sixties counter culture and the spiritual quest and spend the rest of his life as nothing more than an entertaining has-been.

A very interesting and well-written book that should be required reading for anyone interested in the turbulent and dreamy 60s. And for anyone who still believes Leary was innocent in the charges of snitchery.

Erleuchtung in Poona (German Edition)
Erleuchtung in Poona (German Edition)
Price: £12.65

2.0 out of 5 stars superficial and boring, 4 Dec. 2013
This book by a former sannyasin's only value seems to be that it paints a portrait of one of many immature seekers flocking to the mystic Osho (aka Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh) in the 70s. Underlining the fact that Osho was perhaps the first master to give unconditional sannyas to everyone interested without requiering any preparations or qualifications from the aspirant.

Which ofc meant that many sannyasins did not realize that the initiation was only preliminary and that true sannyas required an inner revolution. Therefore we got people like Boerner whose main interest was having sex with as many females as possible. In his case without much love and often a strong element of violence, he seemed to like hitting his women. And imagining themselves enlightened just because of some passing experience in a therapy group.

Besides of that Boerner openly states that he had no real interest in Osho, sleeping through his discourses and never taking the opportunity to have a personal conversation with the master. And when recommended to do a meditation group spending his time trying to sabotage it.

And then he rose to money and fame making a porn movie starring sannyasins....

I Leave You My Dream - Osho Memories
I Leave You My Dream - Osho Memories
by Satya Niranjan
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful sannyas memories, 4 Dec. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Disciples telling about their master has become quite a literary subgenre with works ranging from the embarrasing to the sublime. And ofc for a true disciple nothing is more important than his/her master so no wonder so many like to tell their stories.

This book is the loving memories of an Indian sannyasin devoted to the controversial mystic Osho. Having been around Osho from the start the book contains invaluable information. Painting a lovefilled portrait of Osho as both human being and master.

Where many Western sannyasins tend to emphazise their sexual adventures and in general putting themselves at the center of the story this is a book about devotion and the workings of a Master.

A very beautiful book recommended for everyone interested in the mysteries of initiation and devotion.

Vom Mut, den eigenen Weg zu finden: Licht- und Schattenseiten einer spirituellen Bewegung (German Edition)
Vom Mut, den eigenen Weg zu finden: Licht- und Schattenseiten einer spirituellen Bewegung (German Edition)
Price: £10.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Spritual seekers, 4 Dec. 2013
Germany was undoubtly the European country where Osho (aka Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh) had the greatest impact in the heydays of the sannyas movement in the 80s. In this book Kirsten Pape tries to tell the story - and looking into the importance of sannyas today - by some indepth interviews with six Osho disciples. Two of them having left sannyas while the rest are in some way still connected to the vision of the movement. Most of them unknown but also some well known like the therapist Turya Hannover.

Pape comes across as relatively open minded, also telling about her own (positive) experiences with groups and meditations in Osho regie including a short stay at the meditation resort in Pune. Ofc she centers the rather long and profound talks on the alleged 'scandals': sex and violence in groups, the armed guards in Oregon and so on. But what comes across is that Osho had made a lasting impact on all even them who left in some kind of disappointment or found what they were seeking with another master.

A worthwhile read not only for readers involved with Osho one way or another but for everyone into contemporary mysticism and spirituality.

Traces Of You
Traces Of You
Price: £15.17

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply amazing, 7 Oct. 2013
This review is from: Traces Of You (Audio CD)
For anyone who has followed Anoushka Shankar's career it seems evident that she has improved with each album. Going from higly talented to one of the planet's greatest musicians.

A strong composer, an excellent sitarist with a beautiful tone and most importantly an artist with a strong vision. Making a near perfect blend of East and West.

On this album she has cooperated with Nitin Sawhney on most tracks. And come up with a nice very diverse musical adventure. Most of the tracks are instrumentals with a few mantras shown in and really making Indian music that should appeal to a wide audience. And a young audience too. Music that is completely contemporary and at the same time made with deep reverence to the tradition.

Maybe the biggest attraction for most listeners is the fact that half-sister Norah Jones lends her husky voice to three of the tracks.

Visionary and accesible world music at its best.

Wild Tales
Wild Tales
by Graham Nash
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £17.41

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping and wild, 28 Sept. 2013
This review is from: Wild Tales (Hardcover)
As one would suspect from a superb songwriter and photographer this a work of quality written in an easy but literary style. Funny but also profound when that is needed.

A rather amazing tale of a guy born and raised in utter poverty in postwar UK and then realizing his teenage dream and more with The Hollies before being turned on by the likes of David Crosby and Mama Cass to mindexpanding drugs and the hippie lifestyle.

We get the intimate story of his failed love relationship to Joni Mitchell, the wild and crazy times surronded by lots of gorgous and willing girls, the snorting of insane amounts of coke and the total downfall of Crosby in the 80s. And some interesting reflections on Neil Young and his erratic, selfish behavior that might unsettle some fans of St. Neil. On the other hand he paints a lot more sympathetic pic of Stills than Crosby does in his two autobiographical books.

The only problem is that book is too short, the time from Crosby's return from jail up to now being very fragmentarily dealt with. As if albums like "Live It Up", "After The Storm", "Looking Forward" did not exist not to mention the brilliant Crosby and Nash.

All in all a wonderful book and not only a must-have for CSN(Y) fans but for everyone reflecting on the rock life, the enviroment and the muse of pure Music.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 28, 2013 3:17 PM BST

Price: £7.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant world music, 18 Sept. 2013
This review is from: Superorganism (MP3 Download)
Mickey Hart who just turned 70 has really taken the adventurous part of his Grateful Dead experience into the 21st century. Making a cosmic and earthly world music that only can be compared with the vison of the great, late Joe Zawinul.

Heavy, grounding beats and on top of that a mindmelting soundscape where 'everybody soloes and nobody soloes'. Great lyrics reflecting the more spiritual side of Robert Hunter. Splendid soundscapes from guitarist Gawain Matthews and throbbing, pulsating bass lines from the great Dave Schools. And a guest performance from Zakir Hussain. Topped by the outstanding vocals of Crystal Monee Hall who at times sounds almost like Annie Lennox.

Equally suited for old heads and young lovers of experimental groove music.

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