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Quotations on: Altered States | Cafe-Philosophy.com

Quotations on: Altered States

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Altered States

Some years ago I myself made some observations on this aspect of nitrous oxide intoxication, and reported them in print. One conclusion was forced upon my mind at that time, and my impression of its truth has ever since remained unshaken. It is that our normal waking consciousness, rational consciousness as we call it, is but one special type of consciousness, whilst all about it, parted from it by the filmiest of screens, there lie potential forms of consciousness entirely different. We may go through life without suspecting their existence; but apply the requisite stimulus, and at a touch they are there in all their completeness, definite types of mentality which probably somewhere have their field of application and adaptation. No account of the universe in its totality can be final which leaves these other forms of consciousness quite disregarded. How to regard them is the question -- for they are so discontinuous with ordinary consciousness. Yet they may determine attitudes though they cannot furnish formulas, and open a region though they fail to give a map. At any rate, they forbid a premature closing of our accounts with reality.

~ William James, Varieties of Religious Experience

Altered States

The whole drift of my education goes to persuade me that the world of our present consciousness is only one out of many worlds of consciousness that exist.

~ William James (1842 - 1910)

Altered States

Everyone knows that on any given day there are energies slumbering in him which the incitement's of that day do not call forth. Compared with what we ought to be, we are only half awake. The human individual usually lives far within his limits.

~ William James (1842 - 1910)

Altered States

Compared to what we ought to be, we are only half awake. We are making use of only a small part of our mental and physical resources.

~ William James (1842 - 1910)

Altered States

Once Chuang Tzu dreamed he was a butterfly. He was happy as a butterfly, self content and in accord with its intentions. The butterfly did not know about Chuang Tzu. Suddenly he awoke, and was surprised to find he was Chuang Tzu. Did Chuang Tzu dream he was a bitterly, or did the butterfly dream he was Chuang Tzu? But between Chuang Tzu and the butterfly there must be some distinction. This is called the transformation of things.

~ Chuang Tzu

Altered States

When I consider this carefully, I find not a single property which with certainty separates the waking state from the dream. How can you be certain that your whole life is not a dream?

~ Rene Descartes

Altered States

Altered States of Consciousness are "a qualitative alteration in the overall pattern of mental functioning, such that the experiencer feels his consciousness is radically different from the way it functions ordinarily"

~ Charles Tart

Altered States

The use of drugs to alter consciousness is nothing new. It has been a feature of human life in all places on the earth and in all ages of history.

~ A. Weil

Altered States

I don't use drugs, my dreams are frightening enough.

~ M. C. Escher (1898 - 1972)

Altered States

Drugs are a bet with your mind.

~ Jim Morrison

Altered States

Meditation... dissolves the mind. It erases itself. Throws the ego out on its big brittle ass.

~ Tom Robbins (1936 - )

Altered States

On a lazy Saturday morning when you're lying in bed, drifting in and out of sleep, there is a space where fantasy and reality become one. Are you awake, or are you dreaming? You see people and things; some are familiar; some are strange. You talk, you feel, but you move without walking; you fly without wings. Your mind and your body exist, but on separate planes. Time stands still. For me, this is the feeling I have when ideas come.

~ Lynn Johnston (1947 - )

Altered States

I fell asleep reading a dull book and dreamed I kept on reading, so I awoke from sheer boredom.

~ Heinrich Heine (1797 - 1856)

Altered States

Animals awaken, first facially, then bodily. Men's bodies wake before their faces do. The animal sleeps within its body, man sleeps with his body in his mind.

~ Chazal

Altered States

Sleep is often the only occasion in which man cannot silence his conscience; we forget what we knew in our dream.

~ Erich Fromm (1900 - 1980)

Altered States

So convincing were those dreams of being awake that he woke from them in a state of complete exhaustion, and had to go straight back to sleep again.

~ Joseph Heller (1923 - 1999)

Altered States

That which the dream shows is the shadow of such wisdom as exists in man, even if during his waking state he may know nothing about it... We do not know it because we are fooling away our time with outward and perishing things, and are asleep in regard to that which is real within ourself.

~ Philipus Aureolus Paracelsus (1493 - 1541)

Altered States

What if you slept? And what if, in your sleep, you dreamed? And what if, in your dream, you went to heaven and plucked a strange and beautiful flower? And what if, when you awoke, you had the flower in your hand? Ah, what then?

~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772 - 1834)

Altered States

He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.

~ Douglas Adams (1952 - 2001)

Altered States

Dreaming permits each and every one of us to be quietly and safely insane every night of our lives.

~ William Dement

Altered States

How many of our daydreams would darken into nightmares if there seemed any danger of their coming true!

~ Logan Pearsall Smith (1865 - 1946)

Altered States

A vision without action is called a daydream; but then again, action without a vision is called a nightmare.

~ Jim Sorensen

Altered States

To me dreams are part of nature, which harbours no intention to deceive but expresses something as best it can.

~ Carl Jung (1875 - 1961)

Altered States

In studying the history of the human mind one is impressed again and again by the fact that the growth of the mind is the widening of the range of consciousness, and that each step forward has been a most painful and laborious achievement. One could almost say that nothing is more hateful to man than to give up even a particle of his unconsciousness. Ask those who have tried to introduce a new idea!

~ Carl Jung (1875 - 1961)

Altered States

Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.

~ Carl Jung

Altered States

Experience is never limited, and it is never complete; it is an immense sensibility, a kind of huge spider web of the finest silken threads suspended in the chamber of consciousness, and catching every airborne particle in its tissue.

~ Henry James

Altered States

The evolution of consciousness culminates in an all-inclusive consciousness that functions in the context of the infinite and the eternal.

~ Phiroz Mehta

Altered States

Meditation has been defined as the cessation of active eternal thought.

~ Blavatsky

Altered States

The most complicated achievements of thought are possible without the assistance of consciousness.

~ Sigmund Freud

Altered States

In dream consciousness... we make things happen by wishing them, because we are not only the observer of what we experience but also the creator.

~ Pir Vilayat Khan

Altered States

Mind is consciousness which has put on limitations. You are originally unlimited and perfect. Later you take on limitations and become the mind.

~ Ramana Maharshi

Altered States

If we could sniff or swallow something that would, for five or six hours each day, abolish our solitude as individuals, atone us with our fellows in a glowing exaltation of affection and make life in all its aspects seem not only worth living, but divinely beautiful and significant, and if this heavenly, world-transfiguring drug were of such a kind that we could wake up next morning with a clear head and an undamaged constitution -- then, it seems to me, all our problems (and not merely the one small problem of discovering a novel pleasure) would be wholly solved and earth would become paradise.

~ Aldous Huxley

Altered States

Through meditation and by giving full attention to one thing at a time, we can learn to direct attention where we choose.

~ Eknath Easwaran

Altered States

The man whose whole activity is diverted to inner meditation becomes insensible to all his surroundings. If he loves, it is not to give himself, to blend in fecund union with another being, but to meditate on his love. His passions are mere appearances, being sterile. They are dissipated in futile imaginings, producing nothing external to themselves.

~ Emile Durkheim

Altered States

Nothing is as real as a dream. The world can change around you, but your dream will not. Responsibilities need not erase it. Duties need not obscure it. Because the dream is within you, no one can take it away.

~ Tom Clancy

Altered States

Dreams get you into the future and add excitement to the present.

~ Robert Conklin

Altered States

It is a shame that when we have a good dream we are asleep at the time.

~ P.K. Shaw

Altered States

We are close to waking up when we dream that we are dreaming.

~ Novalis

Altered States

Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.

~ Henry David Thoreau

Altered States

I never took hallucinogenic drugs because I never wanted my consciousness expanded one unnecessary iota.

~ Fran Lebowitz (1950 - )