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From the back cover: Aldous Huxley, novelist, essayist, mystic, wrote with the force of a Swift and the bite of a Voltaire. These fascinating essays reveal the versatility of his extraordinary mind. They range from subjects such as the greeting-card image of Mother to ancient fertility rites; from the origin of the alphabet to the relation of language to philosophy; from li From the back cover: Aldous Huxley, novelist, essayist, mystic, wrote with the force of a Swift and the bite of a Voltaire. These fascinating essays reveal the versatility of his extraordinary mind. They range from subjects such as the greeting-card image of Mother to ancient fertility rites; from the origin of the alphabet to the relation of language to philosophy; from literary censorship to the appalling lack of sexual knowledge in modern society. Exciting, caustic, sometimes shocking, they offer Aldous Huxley's unique view of that continuing paradox - mankind.


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From the back cover: Aldous Huxley, novelist, essayist, mystic, wrote with the force of a Swift and the bite of a Voltaire. These fascinating essays reveal the versatility of his extraordinary mind. They range from subjects such as the greeting-card image of Mother to ancient fertility rites; from the origin of the alphabet to the relation of language to philosophy; from li From the back cover: Aldous Huxley, novelist, essayist, mystic, wrote with the force of a Swift and the bite of a Voltaire. These fascinating essays reveal the versatility of his extraordinary mind. They range from subjects such as the greeting-card image of Mother to ancient fertility rites; from the origin of the alphabet to the relation of language to philosophy; from literary censorship to the appalling lack of sexual knowledge in modern society. Exciting, caustic, sometimes shocking, they offer Aldous Huxley's unique view of that continuing paradox - mankind.

30 review for Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Other Essays

  1. 5 out of 5

    Sunny

    What a fascinating little series of essays written in 1952. I love books that take my mind on little trips (no pun) and to different directions that I just would not have gone before. I picked up Huxley again as I’ve been reading Hitler’s Mein Kampf at the same time and some of the topics they talk about in the books cross over at times. Huxley wrote essays on topics such as knowledge and understanding, the desert, Ozymandias the failed utopia, liberty quality and machinery, censorship and spoke What a fascinating little series of essays written in 1952. I love books that take my mind on little trips (no pun) and to different directions that I just would not have gone before. I picked up Huxley again as I’ve been reading Hitler’s Mein Kampf at the same time and some of the topics they talk about in the books cross over at times. Huxley wrote essays on topics such as knowledge and understanding, the desert, Ozymandias the failed utopia, liberty quality and machinery, censorship and spoken literature, canned fish  and the masses, the mother, the alphabet, the miracle in Lebanon, Famagusta / paphos, faith taste and history, doodles in a dictionary by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, untouchables in India, cleanliness, and a really weird last chapter on coitus reservatus! wtf! Here are some of my best bits from the book: • “Most of us are inveterate end gainers. We are so anxious to achieve some particular end that we never pay attention to the psychological means whereby that end is to be gained.” – How true is that about society today! • Huxley talks about that inner atavistic intelligence in all of us which is almost knowledge agnostic in a way. He asks us to trust that gut instinct and that truth in us all. “If I get out of my not-selves light, I shall be illuminated. If I stop anxiously cogito-ing I shall give myself a chance of being cogitor-ed by a committee of indwelling intelligences that can deal with my problems a great deal better than I can.” • “A tachistoscope – a magic lantern fitter with a shutter that permits the projection of images for a period ranging from a tenth to a thousandth of a second or less. Most training is done with exposures of one hundredth of a second. This is essentially a method for bypassing the bad habits acquired by the conscious self. In ordinary seeing we are hardly ever directly aware of our immediate impressions. For these immediate impressions are more or less profoundly modified by a mind that does most of its thinking in terms of words. Every perception is promptly conceptualized and generalized so that we do not see the particular thing or event in its naked immediacy; we see only the objective illustration of some generic notion, only the concretion of an abstract word. Our ordinary habits of perception cause us to see the world as Platonists. The tachistocope transforms us into nominalists and impressionists." • “Like everyone else I am functioning only at a fraction of my potential”. • “If I would know myself I must know my environment; for as a body, I am part of the environment, a natural object among other natural objects and as a mind, I consist to a great extent of my own immediate reactions to the environment and of my secondary reactions to those primary reactions.” Hence the reason why it's important to foster and create an environment that drives learning by itself. • “Descarte's primal certainty, “I think therefore I am” turns out on closer examination, to be a most dubious proposition. In actual fact is it I who do the thinking? Would it not be truer to say “thoughts come into existence and sometimes I am aware of them”?” • “Be aware impartially, realistically, without judging, without reacting in terms of remembered words to your present cognitive reactions. If you do this the memory will be emptied, knowledge and pseudo knoelwgde will be relegated to their proper place and you will have understanding - in other words you will be in direct contact with reality at every instant.” • “In a completely home-made environment such as is provided by any great metropolis, it is hard to remain sane as it is in a completely natural environment such as the desert or the forest. O solitude where are they charms? But O multitude where are thine?” • “Taken too seriously symbols have motivated and justified all the horrors of recorded history. On every level from a personal to the international the letter kills." Wordology more than ideology is the biggest killer mankind has been witness to. • “In this universally educated population vast numbers never read, or read only the most rudimentary kinds of sub literature and Neanderthal journalism” – totally agree with this! • “Make the best of mankind’s literature of wisdom available on cheap slow playing records (podcasts in today’s vernacular?). Do the same, in each principle language or the best poetry written in that language. Also perhaps for a few of the best novels, plays biographies and memoirs. Encourage manufacturers to turn out phonographs equipped to play these recordings and at the same time arrange for distribution at cost of the simple planetary gears, by means of which conventionally turntables can be used to slow playing disks. 5 or 10 millions spent in this way would, I am convinced, do incomparably more good than hundreds of millions spent on endowing new universities or enlarging those that already exist” – again totally agree with this. If everyone read the 100 greatest pieces of literature in the world the war of the worlds would stop within a few decades for good. • “For as sir Charles Darwin and many others before him have pointed out we are like drunken sailors and like the irresponsible heirs of a millionaire uncle. At an ever accelerating rate we are now squandering the capital of metallic ores and fossil fuels accumulated in the earth’s crust during hundreds of millions of years. How long can this spending spree go on?” • “Dead human beings give birth to flies and worms; alive they generate works and live. Moreover consider the plants, consider the trees. They bring forth flowers and leaves and fruits. But what do you bring forth human? Nits, live, vermin. Trees and plans exude oil, wine, balm and you? – spittle, snot, urine, ordure … we who shrink from touching even with the tips of our fingers a gob of phlegm or a lump of dung, how is it that we crave for the embraces of this mere bag of night soil?” • “The essential act of thought is symbolisation. Our minds transform experiences into signs. If these sings adequately represent the experiences to which they refer and if we are careful to manipulate them according to the rules of a many valued logic we can deepen our understanding of experience and thereby achieve some control of the world and our destiny.” • “Today xmas is a major factor in our capitalist economy. A season of mere good cheer has been converted by the steady application of propaganda into a long drawn buying spree in the course of which everyone is under compulsion to exchange gifts with everyone else to the immense enrichment of merchants and manufacturers.” – No arguments there. • “In English for example the notion of good is rendered by the four letters g-o-o-d. In Chinese the same idea is represented by a combination of a sign for “woman” with the sign for a “child” … but the sign for woman plus the phonogram for fang means “hinder”. Woman plus child equals good. But this good has its price; for a man who has a wife and children has given hostages to fortune. The good of one context is the hindrance of another.”

  2. 4 out of 5

    anon

    https://5cense.com/20/751.htm https://5cense.com/20/751.htm

  3. 4 out of 5

    Andrey

    A very enjoyable book full of great ideas and observations.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    I have nothing but respect for the depth of Huxley's thought, however if you only read one book of Huxley's non-fictional essays, I would still prefer Brave New World Revisited. That said, it is unlikely you are in a hypothetical situation that would require such a dilemma, so I recommend to read both. His explanation of his assertion that all humans are amphibians is back up thoroughly, and is a timeless essay. While some other essays may be somewhat dated, the threats he saw that have not come I have nothing but respect for the depth of Huxley's thought, however if you only read one book of Huxley's non-fictional essays, I would still prefer Brave New World Revisited. That said, it is unlikely you are in a hypothetical situation that would require such a dilemma, so I recommend to read both. His explanation of his assertion that all humans are amphibians is back up thoroughly, and is a timeless essay. While some other essays may be somewhat dated, the threats he saw that have not come into effect may have only been postponed as they are still relevant today. Also, his essay "Hyperion to a Satyr" (my personal favorite) helps us see how things are the way they are on the topic of his essay in a way that we have forgotten over time due to our technological progress. So in that instance, at least, we benefit from the timing of the essay in a way that we could not have gotten from a current writer, a timestamp that gives us insight into history and the present simultaneously.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Adrienne Pettinelli

    "Don't pin your faith on a water supply which, for half the time, isn't there." Excellent advice, Aldous. I got this book so I could read "Ozymandias, the Utopia That Failed," about Llano del Rio, which turned out to be more entertaining than I anticipated. Aldous made me laugh out loud a few times, and Llano has such an interesting history. Aldous also references the commune at Oneida that Sarah Vowell wrote about in Assassination Vacation; he thought the folks in Oneida had things figured out "Don't pin your faith on a water supply which, for half the time, isn't there." Excellent advice, Aldous. I got this book so I could read "Ozymandias, the Utopia That Failed," about Llano del Rio, which turned out to be more entertaining than I anticipated. Aldous made me laugh out loud a few times, and Llano has such an interesting history. Aldous also references the commune at Oneida that Sarah Vowell wrote about in Assassination Vacation; he thought the folks in Oneida had things figured out and the ones at Llano were a bunch of dummies. So then he includes this lengthy appendix about Oneida, which is a stitch, even though I already knew quite a bit about it from Vowell's book. I should probably read Brave New World.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Dixie

    Always intelligent and often challenging. Topics all over the place, from the destruction of nature to 16th century madrigal music. Not the easiest read and not a book I would read again, but a very interesting mind to get a glimpse into.

  7. 4 out of 5

    MarkusQ

    Although I found myself strongly disagreeing with roughly half his theses (mostly due to the semi-mystical refrain) and enthusiastically agreeing with the other half, the writing was delightful throughout.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Drew

    tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow by Aldous Huxley (1964)

  9. 4 out of 5

    R.K. Byers

    it's tough to rate this book aside from saying that it should be read. and why'd he save his best piece of writing for the appendix? it's tough to rate this book aside from saying that it should be read. and why'd he save his best piece of writing for the appendix?

  10. 4 out of 5

    Craizin

  11. 5 out of 5

    Archphil

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jacques Adrian Powers

  13. 5 out of 5

    Iva Matkovic

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jason

  15. 4 out of 5

    Scott

  16. 5 out of 5

    Paul Zink

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jason

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

  19. 4 out of 5

    Nathalie Nareau

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mark

  21. 4 out of 5

    Xero Sapien

  22. 4 out of 5

    Amani

  23. 5 out of 5

    Audrey Cienki

  24. 5 out of 5

    Boohoomian

  25. 5 out of 5

    Chris Raby

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jim Dyer

  28. 4 out of 5

    Dranath Brown

  29. 5 out of 5

    Matt Campbell

  30. 5 out of 5

    Thomas

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