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I Have America Surrounded: The Life of Timothy Leary Paperback – 1 May 2006
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About the Author
John Higgs is an author and BAFTA-nominated TV producer. He has produced a number of animated children's series, most recently The Beeps and Castle Farm. John has produced video games, created the Radio 4 quiz show X Marks The Spot, and written for numerous publications including The Guardian, The Independent and Mojo. His website is www.johnhiggs.com
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whatever my impression of leary has become, this is exceptionally well written, researched and balanced biography by an author that could write entertainingly about the hardening of faecal matter and make it interesting and valid! contains all we need to know, and set out in a neutral narrative that allows the reader to form opinion and learn. what more? i have thoroughly enjoyed this, 'k.l.f.....' and 'stranger than we can imagine....', now looking forward to a 'trip' down 'watling street' in july!
Its fairly readable as well, so something you could take away and finish in a few days!
The title of this book is borrowed from a thing Timothy Leary's sloganized after prez Nixon called him a danger to the youth of the day. Timothy Leary was the psychedelic piper of the counter culture, who told the youth about this version of God, this was after investing magic mushrooms. Things are never the same after experiencing the sacred mushroom.
Before he tried magic mushrooms, Timothy Leary was a stiff Harvard academic, after trying the mushroom, Leary wore beads and guiding a generation of black and white conformist's out of the 1950's and into the light. For his labours, Timothy Leary got his butt thrown into maximum security. Prison was a bitter pill for one of the most prestigious psychologists working in America at the time. Why did he get thrown into prison? Was it for saying that he learned more from an 8 hour mushroom experience than studying psychology for 20 years (the clip was on You Tube for ages but its been taken down now)?
Dr Leary experienced the God within, the God, incidentally, that they never tell you about in kindergarten. The cardinals of the academy, and their political stooges, recoiled in horror at the suggestion that running rats in a maze was not the way to do psychology, and because of their refusal to experiment, Leary called them flat Earthers. We see these flat Earthers today, in the towers of the academy and in the halls of philosophy.
If an idiot looks into a mirror don't expect a genius to look back. Culture is the mirror. Make of that as you may. Why are today's luminaries of psychology so boring and have nothing to offer the world and why is the world so corrupt? Can it be that, like the cardinals in Galileo's time, who refused to look through Galileo's telescope, psychologists today are refusing to look inside themselves? Timothy Leary thought so and it sure looks that way from here.
This is a radical biography of a love him or hate him character. Leary didn't invent the movement, he only added much needed colour. However, there is a lot of sh't flung at Timothy Leary by envious people. Ok, I suppose he was a terrible father and did date the most gorgeous women on the planet at the time, but hey, no one is perfect!
There are parallels with today's occupy movement and the Lsd movement and the way both movements are being dismissed by the misinformed is striking. If you know the lies about the banking rip off and what is being said about the world recession, then you will understand the propaganda wing we live under. They are the same lies about psychedelics and the 60's. Read this and you will realize how lucky that generation was to have a figure-head like Tim Leary.
We could dig up his dead body, if it wasn't shot out into space!
The author is not biased either; he balances out his information and pointing out where Timothy Leary went wrong and writing about some of the less heroic acts he did like become a snitch for FBI in order to get out of prison (however, considering Tim's situation it is still understandable why he did this and besides he could've given away much more information than he let on, but instead cleverly led the Feds on). It also has a good forward by Winona Ryder who happens to be his God daughter... It's totally worth getting this book; from stories like his escape from prison with aid from the Weather Underground to his life in Africa and then Europe with his girlfriend Joanne.
Brilliant! I really did enjoy it but only give it four stars because I wanted it to be a bit long and bit more in-depth with more detail but still a great read - it left me wanting to know more about Leary but this is definately a great starter as Higgs totally connects with the spirit of Leary and spirit of the times.
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