The best books on things we don’t normally perceive or consider, but which have great importance

The Books I Picked & Why

The Guide for the Perplexed

By Moses Maimonides

The Guide for the Perplexed

Why this book?

The classic 13th century medieval Jewish philosophic text that proposes a sophisticated—for that time—metaphysical model of spiritual experience; in this case, prophecy as articulated in the Hebrew Bible. The intellectual scaffolding for my attempt to resurrect a metaphysics of prophecy in my 2014 book "DMT and the Soul of Prophecy."


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Theological-Political Treatise: Tractatus Theologico-Politicus

By Robert Harvey Munroe Elwes, Benedictus de Spinoza

Theological-Political Treatise: Tractatus Theologico-Politicus

Why this book?

Ostensibly an implacable intellectual foe of Maimonides’ “Guide,” this twice-excommunicated Jewish philosopher makes his own compelling arguments for the basis of spiritual experience/prophecy. At the same time, one senses a powerful compatibility with his philosophical opponent’s viewpoints.


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Valis

By Philip K. Dick

Valis

Why this book?

VALIS—Vast Active Living Intelligence System—is one of PK Dick’s most inspiring, and at the same time, depressing, novels. A bizarre film leads a rag tag group of friends to even more bizarre adventures. They meet a 2-year-old Messiah who cures the protagonist’s psychosis. Any more would be spoiling the plot.


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Four Novels of the 1960s

By Philip K. Dick

Four Novels of the 1960s

Why this book?

“The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldridge” is the most horrifying and terrifying novel I’ve ever read. A terran psychedelic drug begins being supplanted by one from another star system. The latter compound never lets you come down—just when you think you have, you start tripping again. And so on…


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Be Here Now

By Ram Dass

Be Here Now

Why this book?

For better and for worse, I read this book when it came out in 1971. It set me on a long and winding path through psychedelics, Eastern religion, and psychology, from which I never returned.


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