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Cults and Cosmic Consciousness: Religious Vision in the American 1960s Author(s): Camille Paglia Source: Arion, Third Series, Vol. 10, No. 3 (Winter, 2003), pp. 57-111 Published by: Trustees of Boston University Stable URL: . Accessed: 17/11/2013 11:56
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Cults and Cosmic Consciousness: Religious Vision in the American






V^jommentary umented

sive. Law and politics and the same thing can but remain controversial, in mass media and the innovations be said of contemporary

1960s has been mas in that turbulent decade are well doc on the

or poorly assimi arts. One major area remains ambiguous new religious vision, which for a tanta lated, however?the moment in sixties brought East and American the lizing a West together in progressive cultural synthesis. Its promise was here. But need never completely the depth fulfilled, for reasons Iwill try to sketch and authenticity of that spiritual shift

to be more widely acknowledged. A political model of the currently governs interpretations born in sixties because of the enduring reform movements

that period, including environmentalism, feminism, and gay liberation. Their mobilizing energy, as well as the organiza also be adopted by antiwar protests, tional style that would sparked by the initially came from the civil rights movement us Supreme Court's in 1954 decision declaring segregation In that crusade, it must be public schools unconstitutional. as Protestant ministers Martin ordained such remembered, Jr., played a leading role, as they also had in abolitionism. The civil rights movement, nineteenth-century its hymns and anthems, with appealed not just to secular Luther King, standards of social justice but to a higher moral code.

An expanded version of a lecture delivered on 26 March 2002 at Yale University, sponsored by the Institute for the Advanced Study of Religion at Yale.

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sixties was expression on the Left in the American So split. Radical activists such as Students for a Democratic from its with drew their Marxism, ciety (1960-68) ideology Political explicit atheism. But demonstrations with a large hippie con and tingent often mixed occultism?magic politics with costumes with and from witchcraft drawn along symbolism Native American and Buddhism. For ex religion, Hinduism, antiwar protest near Washington, ample, at the mammoth a mock-exorcism in October DC, 1967, Yippies performed cast out to levitate the Pentagon since its demons. Not and Romanticism had there been such a early nineteenth-century mix ecstatic nature of with strange revolutionary politics It is precisely self-transformation. and sex-charged worship New the this phantasmagoric religious vision that distinguishes from the Old Left of the Left of the American 1960s


1930s and from France's failed leftist insurgency in their Marxist of 1968, both of which were conventionally to religion. indifference or antagonism were passionately of the sixties counterculture Members to political reform, yet they were also seeking the committed truth about

life outside

spite their ambivalence
sought gurus?mentors

religious and social institutions. De toward authority, however, they of
or guides, who sometimes

proved was opened sciousness"



to what

problem was commonly


that the more called

the mind con


ful politics Civil rights and political and Buddhism, Hinduism

(a hippie rubric of the sixties), the less meaning or social structure became, melting into the Void. reform are in fact Western ideals:

the ego and urg by extinguishing see of ultimate acceptance suffering and injustice reality, ing as essential conditions of life that cannot be changed but of consciousness?"blowing your only endured. Alteration an end or value world-view remade theWestern in itself in the sixties. Drugs of by shattering conventions

mind" ?became

revelation time, space, and personal identity. Unfortunately, was sometimes from delusion. The neuro indistinguishable were denied or underesti use risks of long-term drug logical

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daring sixties questers lost the ability to ar ticulate and transmit their spiritual legacy to posterity. in this area is voluminous The source material but uneven the most

in quality, partly because sixties chronicles at their most col orful often rely on anecdote and hearsay. Hence, much of the present essay is provisional. My aim is to trace lines of influ ence might and to suggest historical parallels?an aid teachers in the us and abroad who interdisciplinary

overview are interested the sixties.

that in







of young people in the American sixties to from alternative away parents explore and lifestyles. A minority world-views actually joined com munes or cults. These varied in philosophy and regime from Tens of thousands or broke drifted the mild to the extreme. sixties the American the Hellenistic in The true cults that proliferated and early seventies resemble those of eras. Such phenomena and imperial Roman of cultural fracturing in cosmopolitan periods

and mobility. of small groups Consisting of the disaffected or rootless, cults are sects that may or may not evolve into full religions. Hence, the cult phenomenon even at its most bizarre demonstrates the sociological dy as namic of the birth of religions, they flare up, coalesce, and strengthen or sputter out and vanish. A cult is a foster fam ily that requires complete severance from past connections? in cults may begin with a kin, spouses, friends. Membership ultimate which experience where an individual feels that truth has been glimpsed. This may lead to zealotry, the conviction that the cult view is the only possible view, sudden conversion too refined plex the world to the benighted or is be promulgated to be understood com A persecution others. by and siege mentality may result: cult members feel that therefore must is the enemy the Hellenistic and that only martyrdom and imperial Roman will vindi

are symptoms of rapid expansion

cate their faith. During periods,

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the estab mystery religions competed with or civic gods, whose state religions of the Olympian official worship was public and often located in city centers. lished The mammoth tures and dissemination has of Rome artifacts resulted religion, at the Renaissance, being por as stabler or more uniform than it of Olympian images in Greco-Roman in sculp


from the excavation

trayed by neoclassicism was. Mystery fewer and religions, which generally produced or stone less monumental idols, offered chryselephantine personal salvation bound

initiation into an enlightened through some the group by special secret, often involving an a for of miseries. recompense afterlife, present promise Hence mystery had great religions appeal to the powerless mystery Dionysus, religions?of Isis, and Mithras?anticipated, Demeter, influenced, or vied to the sometimes with Christianity. dryly con Compared mystery religion was characterized identification with by a worshipper's powerful to the god. Christianity, connection and emotional based on tractual veneration of the Olympians, one of many itinerant the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, a in Palestine, emerged from of splin preachers proliferation ter sects in Judaism, among which were the Essenes, who left War Sea Scrolls in jars found just after World ii in caves near Qumran in Israel. The Essenes, ascetic and celibate hermits with an apocalyptic theology, were a cult by any modern definition. The American sixties, I sub the famous Dead of spiritual crisis and political unrest sim ancient then under Roman Palestine, of modern media. religions faltered under Few prophets or mes eye of the invasive TV and dispossessed. The major Mediterranean

mit, had a climate ilar to that of occupation. the pitiless siahs could

But this time the nascent scrutiny survive the deglamourizing

Yet a major source of cultic America was the entertainment

in twentieth-century stu industry: the Hollywood dio system, cohering during and just after World War i, pro stars as simulacra of the pagan jected its manufactured energies

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for example. mass media Modern extended and broadened immensely that phenomenon. are sometimes who like Adonis linked with mother figures. The same myth of surviving death is at to rock star Jim Morrison. death is sexy. Outbursts of quasi-religious emotion of be seen in the hysterical female fans to response Frank Sinatra. at its most macho. and the Valentino.15. who inspired a false rumor that swept the world 1969 that he was dead. It's no coincidence that it emperor Hadrian. Beatles songs and album covers were Imyself feverishly scrutinized for clues and coded messages: to this pandemonium a contributed New Haven by calling radio station to identify mortuary lines from King hear sub in the climactic cacophony of "I am the Walrus. sweet. The hapless McCartney had This content downloaded from 181. when eighteenth were the dizzy object of coterie speculation and intrigue. Rudolph could Beatles. Cultism of this demonstrative kind is archetypally mourners distraught potent: after Valentino's age forty-two has repeatedly produced pretty. and never fully re Presley. Elvis Presley.183. worshippers been generated by grand opera in the late-seventeenth and castrati sang female roles and centuries. for maddened of Cybele) had already natici. by the Roman was Paul McCartney.213 on Sun. from his mother's after death at age forty-six unexpected at substance he died prematurely abuse. there Eroticism were mixed riots with death nearly by death from a perforated ulcer at age thirty-one in 1926." In merged cultic experience.Camille Paglia 61 Frenzied fans (aword derived from the Latin fa pantheon. androgynous surly. sank into depression ated with half covered in 1958. Tabloids have touted Presley's canonization saint. the "cutest" and most girlish of the in Beatles. long even in 1977. as if he were a demigod who could conquer nat as the ural law. Rock music. first Protestant tached is persistently associ half young men. long-haired boys who mes merize both sexes and who hauntingly resemble ancient the beautiful. ill-fated youth beloved sculptures of Antinous. The rumor that Elvis lives is still stubbornly planted in the culture. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . whose Paris grave has be come a magnet for hippies of many nations.

Bacchanalia arrived Celebrants "standing outside of")." the pacifist sixties Bacchanalia. derlay worship saw nature's side. tangible Through a whole generation proof of humanity's the sensory tapped into nat link to the cos was a credo. mos. which mentalized.62 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS the dying god of fertility myth who was the for the deified Antinous: after Antinous epicene prototype in the Nile in 130 ad. Hence sios. new amplification by powerful. the "Liberator") with in Southern Italy from Greece to Rome. become Adonis. "orgy"). nated the mind and activated the body seen in Western treme than anything ancient Roman that thunderous ural energies. which at that mo was an art form. but that frightful. of rock was produced that subordi technology in a way culture more since assault ex the of ment late-forties But the titanic. Bacchanalia perception was gradually Latin word term for the Dionysian ritual orgia (root of the English where celebrants maddened by drink. eventually spread and ivy danced to flutes in festivities that became woods and opportunistic promiscuity the Second breaks following in the fifth century bc and decked with myrtle and cymbals through city parks and notorious crime. rhythmic music or transcending their or of Dionysus (called Lu The theater.15. where crowned ravishing cult statues often showed the pensive youth with the grapes and vines of Dionysus. went into ecstasy and wildly (ecstasis. abandoning the association dinary selves. drugs. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . The becoming and fifties African-American all-enveloping sound big beat came from rhythm and blues.213 on Sun. After for open sexual repeated out the Bacchanalia Punic War. "Flower power. destructive Euripides is the lost over time. music. The evangelical fervor felt by many heretical young people in the 1960s was powered by rock music. a threat to public order and officially were declared sup bc in 186 But Senate their influence Roman the pressed by This content downloaded from 181. Dionysus. In ancient of the the Bacchae.183. the grief-stricken drowned Hadrian over in him had memorialized shrines all the Mediterranean. senti un neo-Romantic version of earth cult.

sex di where vorced from cosmology becomes permissively recreational. This process of secularization. was closed assistant a religious be his League for Spiritual Discovery inMillbrook. Leary envi sioned a world of "psychedelic network churches" whose Vatican would nym: lsd). Gordon institution. like Plato's Retreat. can also be seen in the transition from the hippie sixties to there vate the manic Romantic houses.213 on Sun.183. AND CULTURAL POLARIZATION from bath and sex clubs NEW MESSIAHS 3. An Irish Catholic turned self-described prophet. This content downloaded from 181. a frequent ties?reportedly County Liddy.15. headquartered raid led by Dutchess (acro until it after a 1966 police prosecutor G. religious a of the sixties has been obscured by series of scandals pulse munes that began mid-decade and spilled into the seventies?com that failed. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In the ruins of Pompeii. Cultural and burnt Kennedy changes exploded out with themselves im tremendous The speed. cidents The optimistic sixties saga degenerated into horrifying in of group psychology is notorious gone wrong. This episode first brought lsd to public attention. years after the assassination in 1963. resort destroyed by a volcanic eruption in j^ ad. hedonistic is evidence that the Bacchanalia had evolved into pri sex clubs. Most a drifter who became a fixture the case of Charles Manson.Camille Paglia 63 as attested by Dionysian designs on sarcophagi persisted. the and the walls of private villas. Though registered as the League was noted for its sex par attraction of Leary's Harvard of fices as well. New York. seventies nature and early cult withdrew eighties: sex detached to glitzy urban discos. The sensational chain in 1963 of Timothy Leary from psychology lecture cults that ended of events began with the dismissal and his colleague Richard Alpert for experimenting with LSDon student vol ships at Harvard unteers. charismatic leaders who turned psychotic. What we the half-dozen think of as the 1960s was really concentrated into of John F. in crime and murder.

hypnotic powers district during its famous Haight-Ashbury of Love" and who gathered a group of fa hippie girls who thought he was both Jesus had 5*2" tall. in other words. and Lenin and who even to a commune called emigrated with his followers in the Guyana Jonestown jungle.183. living in a rented house wood Hills. had an apocalyptic a In Manson hit 1969. Manson's girls boasted of the "sexual release" they felt in their Maenadic frenzy as they plunged their knives into their actress victims. The details still shock: in jailhouse confessions. cults seemed increasingly psychopathic. Jones ordered mass sui cide by cyanide-laced punch: 914 people were found dead." a commune of drugs was promoted and ritu heavy use of a cornucopia alistic group sex practiced. Buddha.15. or Radical political cells like the bomb-making Weathermen Liberation who the Symbionese Patty Army. A student of the Bible. Manson became patriarch of the on a ranch near Los Angeles where "Family.213 on Sun. dispatched squad to slaughter seven people in two nights. including 280 children. and whose began emblem was a talismanic seven to merge in popular perception with like Jim Jones' People's Temple. Though only as a He cult leader. including the in the Holly Sharon T?te. nominally religious groups whose mostly black congregation was drawn from San Fran at the height worker and political cisco nation tually of the hippie era.64 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS of San Francisco's 1967 natical Christ "Summer devotees. interest among curious young people in the at the swinging same time sixties as an revived acrimo nious debate about the sixties tion of the first baby-boom legacy intensified with president. Manson the Beatles: believed that the Book of Revelations prophesied modern re pop culture. fifty-one By the seventies. kidnapped Hearst headed in 1974 cobra. and the devil. stabbed sixteen of Jesus. August ligious meaning. eight months times and a male companion pregnant. Bill Clinton. the elec Thus. Jones was a social activist who claimed to be the reincar T?te. After a shootout that killed a visiting us Congressman in 1978. a This content downloaded from 181. Ikhnaten. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In the nineties. was times.

by 1976. pattern of the last thirty-five liberals and conservatives. The sixties were the breeding ground for the depressingly order platform. Though there are cults religious dimension Solar that resulted abroad?the Armageddon-style Temple in fifty-three way Shinrykyo in 1995. The Davidians were a branch of Sev enth-Day Adventists with roots in the 1930s. after a four-month siege by agencies of in the expectation of ascent to heaven.183. thought formulaic political of have been lost. The sixties which lost pro The excesses. called himself "Yahweh" and kept a harem. conservatives and cultural This content downloaded from 181.213 on Sun. In 1993. was destroyed by fire. Their leader. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . with the lives. white. The cult followed a strict code of celibacy: Hale-Bopp and seven other men had been surgically castrated Applewhite to avoid homosexual temptation. years?a rigid polarization with each group striking predictable postures and mouthing Gradations sanctimonious of political platitudes. David Koresh. loss of eighty-one the federal government. had committed mass bodies. gained great stirring again won a on House Nixon White Richard the law-and 1968. suicide 1997. a Christian commune of Branch of the Manson coincidental Davidians near Waco. suicides in Switzerland released group who sarin gas in 1994 or the Aum in the Tokyo sub primarily alism and disillusion is killing twelve and injuring five thousand?it in American culture that the sixties drama of ide has been played their own manifest of Christian out. a "born-again" was elected Carter. In thirty-nine draped in purple Diego. California. evangelical already momentum. signaled by the comet. fundamentalism. An obscure cult led by Marshall Apple the son of a Presbyterian minister.15. In in the early sixties. the These sensational cases further distorted and distanced of the sixties. Nike all wearing sneakers and a near San were in found house shrouds. One reason is that liberals have thereby allowing shown con tinual disrespect for religion.Camille Paglia 6$ upsurge of cult incidents also triggered memories era. Texas. credibility through duced the counterreaction American and pentecostal movements. Jimmy president. Southern Baptist.

such colonists. Jacques Lacan.66 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS to take the high road and claim to be God's agents in de values.183. the be correctness" the of should regarded as eighties "political even sophisticated a cult that brainwashed journalists until in the pro-sex nineties.15. With style. were Separatists who seventeenth-century seceded from the Church of England. of sixties happenings seemed to delegitimize the period's po litical ideals. so that progressive a sterile instrument of govern as if social-welfare agencies and federal religiosity is the Arcadian matriarchal myth of "the example that emerged in feminism and lesbian separatism Goddess" in the seventies and still flourishes in innumerable books still ideol and in print. of course. and Michel cult that treated pointlessly and self-referential cryptic texts as Holy Writ. A third exam which infested American humanities allied with in an far-right Christians that threatened First Amendment their deprogramming ple is poststructuralism. Memories of the sixties programs since the flakiest have been censored out of embarrassment. Psychic repres rationalism and intol sions perhaps produced by Protestant erance of dissent among in the Salem witch-trials the Massachusetts (1692). An Dworkin. On obvious the other hand. identity: af Religion has always been central to American filiation with or flight from family faith remains a primary term of our self-description. began in re America. ligious dissidence: many early Northeastern had as the Pilgrims. could bring salvation. whose Puritans erupted lurid imagery of sex This content downloaded from 181. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . from the late seventies the mid through departments academic adulation nineties: of Jacques Der the uncritical Foucault was an insular rida. A second example ogy typified in the eighties Andrea who is the puritanical feminist by Catharine MacKinnon it could be argued that there are traces in the liberalism of recent decades. of sixties has too often become in the sixties. crusade anti-pornography its ironclad dogma and inquisitional liberties. Liberals have forgotten the reli fending traditional gious ferment on the Left politics ment manipulation.213 on Sun.

183. Society emigrated in century after persecution The and England. Joseph found Smith. by self-proclaimed prophet. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . (1848-81) munal property and open marriage. Utopian communities such as Brook Farm (1841-47) and the "new Eden" of Fruit lands (1843-44). successful of America's nonconformist clothing. Their most then to America conservative branch. later renounced. still live in rural central Penn and contemporary sylvania and reject electricity. automobiles. Mormonism (the Jesus was a founded Saints). in upstate New York in 1830 and eventually clashed with the federal gov (The Mormons refuge in Utah. and espoused social activism. ernment in 1852 when they adopted the Old Testament prac tice of polygamy.15. property as well as their plain style of furni influence minimalist that would modern de The Mennonites. The backlash The politics oddly resembles of that of modern sexual pattern license cycle compulsive remains a deep-seated of 1960s' combination was prefigured popular cul and puritan culture. another sect in search of religious freedom. the Amish.) There were many. short-lived in the nineteenth-century. The Shakers and liberty of conscience. (a egalitarianism. in American (the Religious Quakers to America in the seventeenth spirituality with progressive the reformist world-view of the by of who Friends). Nineteenth-century eighteenth were known for their code of celibacy and communal ture and crafts sign.213 on Sun.Camille Paglia 6y and demonism ture. The most Church of Christ of Latter-Day sects. sexual hierarchy pacifism. Hence the religious dissidence and secessionist of the 1960s were simply a new version of a long American This content downloaded from 181. the Oneida Community Perfectionists who advocated com tendencies Massachusetts. authority. slang term that described their ecstatic transports) were to America lish Quakers who emigrated for religious dom Shaker in the late communities Eng free century. Quakers rejected materialism. both established in by Transcendentalists In Central New Christian were York. were Dutch and Swiss Anabaptists who fled to Germany and in the late seventeenth century.

Though museum collec are tions rich with religious masterpieces from the Middle century. With mid-twentieth the young artists century. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Vietnamese and love beads.213 on Sun. that it remains at the level of kitsch. And the art it slid itself has suffered: with deeper themes excised. loom large partly because politics inner journeys. followed questers Timothy firefights. The decade's unlike demonstrations. Today's young peo ple learn about the sixties through a welter of video clips of JFK's limousine in Dallas. jokey postmodernism that reduced art to ide as social vehicles of approved ology and treated art works messages.15." a misty photograph by the Ameri a Serrano of wood and plastic crucifix submerged in a Plexiglas tank of his own urine. tune in. during the conservative was success to sat Ronald Reagan. who adorned the Madonna elephant dung and ringed her with pasted-on photos of fe This content downloaded from 181. 1989 over can Andres "Piss Christ. and then a decade later over a 1996 collage of the Virgin Mary by the British-Niger with breasts of ian Chris Ofili.68 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS tradition. major American muse Ages through the nineteenth ums and urban art galleries ignore contemporary religious thanks to the absence of strong practi art?thus ensuring. and drop out" and re moved themselves from career tracks and institutions. an artist's path to instant Warfare irize or profane Christian erupted in iconography. which were too felt corrupt to reform. draped in buckskin fervent of the decade's and hippies the most Furthermore. The testimony of those they radical ruined explorers of inner space has largely been lost: they on drugs as a their minds and bodies by overrelying shortcut to religious illumination. and indeed often staged for the camera.183. were photographable spiritual Leary's advice to "Turn on. world into a shallow. tioners. The absence eral cultural controversies of those criticism sixties seekers from the arena of gen can be seen in the series of unresolved over the issue of blas in the last two decades the triumph of avant-garde modernism phemy in art. few ambitious by would dare to show religious work. of administrations By the 1980s.

by the eighties. Rudy Giuliani.213 on Sun. the ultimate responsibility for this continuing Nevertheless. Jungian studies all follow of the masses. French the Frankfurt and British cultural poststructuralism. School. primary guide syncretism and who be Jung. Ofili painting made hardly a ripple in London but caused an in the us in 1999 when itwas exhibited. But American thought had little impact on post-sixties to the invasion of European academe. al even in the us. who are fixed in an moved elitist mind-set that automatically defines religion as reac and Federal tionary unenlightened. rancor rests with the arts community. thanks theory. Jung's theory of the collective unconscious was partly derived from the Hindu concept of samskaras. by the aggravated. agnostics had respected the cosmic ex of religious vision. has been further diminished ready minuscule treated This of the needlessly offensive in such incidents. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . funding of the arts.Camille Paglia 69 male The clipped from pornographic magazines. outrageously plorable Museum. There was also widespread interest at the time in harmonizing world reli new in was this Carl gions. by the Brooklyn such cases was fomented by agendas of their own: New for example. the residue of past lifetimes. the was no to anyone longer seek taken seriously?and art has a spiritual meaning was positively perilous This content downloaded from 181.183. Jung in the rituals and iconography anthropology. cultural stalemate was of voices way that religion has been grandstanding York mayor because disappearance Even counterculture pansiveness ecumenical I contend. revealed the poetry of world The Golden and philoso religions." claim that great the Marxist The line that religion is "the opiate end result was that. His interdisciplinary interpretation of culture was also influenced by Sir James George Frazer's multi-volumed Bough phy work of classical (1890-1915).15. with a de explosion genitalia lack of basic The uproar politicians curatorial in all with support. to cut off the Brooklyn Museum's public funding. from the sixties religious revolution. who was the son of a Protestant minister in depth after his break with gan to study Asian thought The Freud in 1913.

In the Great Awakening minister Congregational Edwards necticut Valley with re viewed the ease and slackness of contemporary a as falling off from the disciplined vigor of ligious practice New Puritan His forefathers. that Emerson suave a Boston minister. 4. like that of his friend Henry David Thoreau. a pagan pantheism. point was in The Sixties Spiritual taken up again by Robert S.183. His holistic the Romantic vision of nature. Its had been a Unitarian from a line of clerics) but resigned his (descended not accept the doctrine of transub he could because post in the Eucharist. of the mid-eighteenth century. reserved and austere. This content downloaded from 181. Ellwood but discussion of the sixties re (1994). 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the social success Emerson was spurned. Emerson was and rote formulas of genteel repelled by the passionlessness His churchgoing. had had poet. more resembled influenced leading minister ("Sinners in the Hands weakness.15. the lit up the Con Jonathan Edwards his call for a renewal of Calvinist belief. and German idealism. contemptible as a program of rebellious Transcendentalism But of an Angry God") the 1960s spiri by British Romanticism Emerson. Emerson to his family's religious vocation cult of nature. while the Left rejects religion wholesale. not unlike the Romantic who had a similar reverence for Wordsworth. general Awakening mains is too The resistance of received opinion unchanged. Awakenings.213 on Sun. which was (1835-60). McLoughlin William 1978 book. transferred father. 1741 terrifying England's "Fire Sermon" stressed man's tual awakening.70 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS or promotion in the humanities ing employment ments of major American universities. strong: the Right refuses to acknowledge anything positive in the sixties legacy. Ralph Waldo liberalization. More stantiation generally. Re and Reform. McLoughlin's vivals. William nature. TRANSCENDENTALISM That depart AND ASIAN RELIGION to a the spiritual awakening of the 1960s belonged was long series of religious revivals in America argued by in his splendid G. figure.

Emerson's Nietzsche as the "Over-Soul. became a canonical text for the sixties counter culture. Maya in 1857. god." atman. transforming from his casual through which ever withdrew books on Eastern of it came entirely knowledge in Emerson's reading personal library." a translation of the San soul. refers to God skrit word. Bronson which Alcott was he had explored the other Transcendentalists. Christy inspected records at the Boston Athenaeum and Harvard borrowing College Library. as well as Emerson's journals and margina lia. (1836-41). Thoreau's Waiden (1854)." first published satirical lampoons that Emerson's many publisher begged no to to it from the edition of his se him. The most intriguing of the parallels between New England interest and 1960s thought is Emerson's Transcendentalism Hindu sacred texts (the Bha literature?mainly In and Confucius' maxims. which translators often mis is the veil of illu leadingly render in English as "Superman. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .15. he was guided by Emerson's second wife. Library records showed no sign that Thoreau the undergraduate His religion. Among most interested inHindu philosophy. avail. a professor at Columbia University. This content downloaded from 181." Emerson's intensified af literature. was the butt of so "Brahma. to trace his considerable reading history of Asian texts. gavad Gita and the Upanishads) to theWest until dia's religious literature had been unknown in Asian the first European translation in when Sanskrit 1785.213 on Sun. 1876 drop In his seminal essays Emerson lected poems. was documented Arthur by Christy. to his poems "Brahma" to most readers at the ap and time. in his 1932 book.183. Harvard By contrast.) titles were Emerson gave inexplicable creator is the Hindu of the Bhagavad Gita studies had just begun. meaning "supreme and universal "Over-Soul" would be reinterpreted by Friedrich as the ?bermensch. peared The "Maya" (Brahma sion. prefigures a journal of his experiment in in monastic woods the living near Boston. which study of Hindu ter his first wife's death.Camille Paglia 71 1960s ecology: indeed. The in American Orient Transcendentalism.

actually advised Whitman Leaves of later editions sexual from references purge of Grass. which addresses Whitman fornia. They This content downloaded from 181. to Whit lines. from which evolved his doctrine of American individualism and flocked charismatic appeal as an anti-estab could be compared to that of the early Tim "Don't trust anyone over thirty. schoolteacher working Emerson the sage was the main draw in the Transcenden students and other young talist circle. long poems. I witnessed I traveled with other students around Leary when from self-reliance. who warned. Ginsberg incantatory regularly paid homage in Cali man. scene the mob (As a college student in 1966. protest poem." othy Leary. betrays the Romantic their Puritan nature cult of Emerson see nature in and Thoreau lineage. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .15. de Thoreau The limitations in Emersonian Transcendentalism for the poem. succeeding decades) openly chal After William Blake's allegorical isWestern literature's closest form and visionary style of its cosmic scale. Walt Whitman absorbed British Romantic with pagan poetry as well Asian over as Emerson's their disparate epic (expanded sprawling. as in his amusing 1955 poem. long. Leaves of Grass approximation sacred Hindu to the dynamic literature. Whitman's and essays. with tremendous have poem would fifties Beat poetry. Whitman's influence on the 1960s via poems influences.183. Emerson's lishment mentor to hear him speak about to Cornell University Binghamton lsd and his new League for Spiritual Discovery. which. Harvard people to hear him to his home speak or made pilgrimages in Concord. they felt to be spite their great admiration crude flaws. His warm of rapport with and encouragement the young came from his own conflicts with authority. "A Supermarket name.) In Leaves of Grass (1855). lenged Judeo-Christianity.72 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS while as a Philadelphia in the 1830s." by are sug and expressed by both Emerson gested by the reservations to the sexual material in Leaves of Grass. who had always disliked the bawdi to ness in Shakespeare's plays.213 on Sun. Emerson. Howl in particular Allen Ginsberg's prophetic imitates Whitman's which (1956). In this respect.

Their hip appropriation of Asian thought is illustrated by the title of Jack Kerouac's 1958 autobiograph ical novel. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . in The (A leading character is based on Snyder.213 on Sun. bar would complete Transcendentalism?through baric medium of rock.183. rigorous terms but cannot tolerate or encompass na ture's stormier Dick energies?the theme of Herman Melville's (1851)." he was evidently made uncomfortable It was stimulation. Anti-clericalism?hostility pervasive been entrenched among the European chy?has intelligentsia since the Enlightenment. assumptions. later live Thoreau-style in a monastery Dharma colated Bums from in Japan. Though most of in Asian religion. from Oregon who would a rugged. The defiant rejection of organized religion by Beat poets and artists was a substantial part of their legacy to the 1960s counterculture. was a nation own right. and emotional by music's heady rhythms the American 1960s that the new. music.) Buddhist references per the Beats into anti-academic poetry of other This content downloaded from 181. 5. Ginsberg. partly because the Roman Catholic Church was once an active force in politics and economics in its and.Camille Paglia 73 clean. to Beats who San Francisco in the fifties learned drifted about Zen Buddhism naturalist from the poet Gary Snyder. Significantly. AMERICAN STRAINS OF ASIAN RELIGION IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY The in the bohemian presence of Asian religion us 11 was in War the after World underground unparalleled in avant-garde Paris during the same pe and existentialist to priests and church hierar riod.15. in the period of the Papal States. though he enjoyed choosing Moby Emerson did not much care for hymns for Sunday services. The Dharma Bums (dharma is a Hindu and Bud dhist term for natural truth or right living). Despite the call for ecstasy in his poem "Bacchus. they borrowed the Beats merely dabbled fans critique Western enough to help their second-generation intellectual and the other Kerouac.

ness" to a meeting of the American Medico-Psychological Association in Philadelphia.213 on Sun. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . paper 1894. psychiatrist. Suzuki ers. inNew York established on Ma Suzuki lectured extensively 1950s." "Differing in his It was Watts' to "cosmic consciousness" that put it into the cul 1962 book. In a Western culture had great impact 1966. A Study in book. during World War where he taught at the School of Asian Studies in San Fran cisco and joined the Los Angeles Vedanta Society.74 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS schools A Zen from the fifties Institute was Zen Center Francisco's in 1930. In his book. term time. Bucke attempted to This content downloaded from 181. Daisetz (1870-1966). Watts' many books.15. where he lectured on "Narcotics Views and Hallucinogenic of the Self and Its Relation reference and Drugs" to Nature. including as a visiting professor hayana Buddhism at Columbia University. devoted to Vedanta Hinduism.183. The had been coined by a of the tural atmosphere in a very Richard Maurice Canadian Bucke. was published met in London earlier that year. Bucke had be gun to question the standard categories of Western logic and a "Cosmic Conscious In called he read science. were in the sixties. (1915-73). in the us. such as The Way of East and West (1957) and Psychotherapy (1961). he spent several days at my college. The Joyous Cosmology. San in But American inter 1959. available as vividly bound paperbacks widely as a popular Watts sometimes has been dismissed Though Zen studies of Asian and izer. I can attest that his comparative on me as a student. began est in Zen was primarily stimulated by two non-fiction writ a Japanese Buddhist T. was born in Eng Watts and Alan who scholar. spiritualistic Human Mind the Evolution (1901). His first book on in 1936 after he Buddhism. The Spirit of Zen. Watts was Epis had Suzuki near Chicago at Northwestern University copal chaplain 11 and then moved to the West Coast. In the to the early seventies. land. Cosmic Consciousness: odd. While superin of the tendent of an asylum for the clinically insane. Watts was an Anglican priest with a master's degree in theology who had had an interest in Asian thought and culture since adolescence.

who had moved studied Ve in the 1940s with Swami Prabhavananda danta Hinduism and was other book The a member of the Los Angeles Vedanta British about Society. Until after liament held World War mainly 11. Jesus. the Society. Playfully brandishing a in and and sometimes dressed squeezebox ger-cymbals was a mantra Hindu constant.15. however. William figures quirky profiles Such individuals. 1930s Germany inspired I Am a Cam to had converted to Hinduism after moving This content downloaded from 181. like the Yippies. his prophetic persona on Blake as Allen Ginsberg modeled rabbis in his own Jewish tradition. he had transformed by Gary Snyder. exuded a palpable magnetic fuse Asian and Western spiritual illumination. charlatans. Ramakrishna. celebrated Ginsberg appetite and in food and sex. Los Angeles. By the sixties.Camille Paglia 75 somewhat religion by juxtaposing like of Buddha. Hinduism at the World's of Religions Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. popular mind with kooks. Aldous Huxley. to the Par Indian the legendary spiritual leader. and Hollywood to California. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . (1951). extraordinary Blake. and Walt Whitman. aura because they Bucke felt. openly gay Stories about decadent Christopher Vedanta for Modern Man Isherwood. of Snyder's athletic asceticism. robes. of the American The Hinduism 1960s had several sources. who ical theater into vaudeville?much a pig for president in 1968. the bearded Ginsberg He turned polit chanting presence at major demonstrations. whose autobiographical era and Cabaret. American to urban centers confined interest and was in Hinduism connected was in the actors. following the visit of Swami Vivekenanda. An edited a Isherwood.213 on Sun. fin into a genial Hindu guru. from which numerous branches opened around the country. nominated had had an organized basis in the us since the a disciple of 1890s. Dante.183. well as on visionary had attained Though bookish Chatty excess himself introduced to Buddhism had none Ginsberg and omnivorous. the gay. Berlin expatriate. Vivekenanda founded (1863-1902) the American Vedanta Society inNew York City.

in In He the insane worked with and board. By This content downloaded from 181. Baba's value" and world New sometimes nebulous "spiritual gananda. from the teacher born to a Zoroastrian family in India.15. and other drugs as a route to en the sixties was Transcendental of philosophy of Yo that resembling in India as the Spiritual Regeneration Mahesh Maharishi Yogi in 1957. The Director gananda was in his body twenty physical disintegration" state of immutability. Born in the first yoga master established the international headquarters Bengal." was based on ancient Vedic literature whose that he claimed Deva. to imparted by master at times accused of claiming student.76 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS The groundwork for the Asian trend of the American sixties was probably laid by Paramhansa Yogananda (1893-1952). and including met President at theWhite House.183. Yogananda in Los Angeles in 1925. he communicated by smiles. gestures. Carnegie Hall. "Avatar" Meher boyishly beardless ders. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Mute on. days after death. Movement North Asian founded cult of harmony.213 on Sun. Christlike cover photo of the white-robed. The Maharishi tm was more profes the mid-seventies. The major Meditation. godlike powers. such At to have learned the start. In the sixties. not least biography of a Yogi (1946) had an enormous for the numinous. from which it spread to ishi brought tm to Hawaii America and Europe. where Yo an in stated affidavit that there was "no buried. His practice of deep relaxation. he strongly Age. aim is "bliss. poor alphabet 1920s in the us dia in the forties. tm had more as a personal secret mantra was from his master. Baba was an author and opened a center in South Carolina. He of his Self-Realization Fellowship at lectured to packed audiences. prefigured condemned the use of lsd lightenment. perhaps as the result of being struck on the head and an years earlier." "a phenomenal A singular figure of lesser influence was Baba who in 1952 and arrived (1894-1969). His Auto Calvin Coolidge impact. The Mahar by in 1959. guru with long hair flowing over his shoul of Forest Lawn Memorial Park. Shri Guru cult-like characteristics. to teach full-time in the West.

with headquarters Its India. sex.15. tm bought the campus in Iowa and opened the Maharishi ment. pamphlets. he began publishing Back to Godhead and incorporated his organization. Several cults caused much public concern in the sixties and seventies Krishna because of their hold movement?the on young people. Deepak tm as a business. followers became notorious for their Mayapur. which required to renounce meat. He it drew those then took the Society to San Francisco. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . magazine disciples marital where among In 1966. havior be heads. saffron robes and beads. The Hare International Society of Krishna claims to have been founded in the which Consciousness. at the Society's The movement to London message were 108 centers worldwide. particularly carried the there an enormous addicted hippie following." with its "Hare Krishna" refrain.183. founder. There India in the 1950s and moved mass he wrote books and conducted of Hindu chanting in Square Park?provocative activity at Tompkins phrases the time. His disciples and Berlin. were a cult as peak. In 1974.Camille Paglia 77 sionally teaching us. won much member Patrick This content downloaded from 181. gambling. "My licity at the 1970 release of George Harrison's Sweet Lord. pub song. to drugs. A former staff for then-Governor inaccurately Reagan that the Krishnas in California. The Hare Krishnas were pursued with huge fanfare by Ted Patrick. in sixteenth century?is still in operation. was a disciple of theMaharishi on Oprah Winfrey's but broke with him and tm in 1993. and extra alcohol. and aggressive on street corners as they sang. selling author who became a media star through his visibility TV show. Prabhupada to New York in 1965. currently claims five million New the motivational Age speaker and best Chopra. Swami shaved in had begun preaching (1896-1977). shook rattles and tam and pushed Their ascetic bourines.213 on Sun. organized the system at stress-relief with certified trainers centers throughout the of a Presbyterian college of Manage University followers worldwide. a who "d?programmer" forcibly rescued young people from cults and returned them to worried Ronald warned parents.

boom subsided in the seventies. celibacy. When vine Mission's behind the throne?his power mother. Because of his staunch anti This content downloaded from 181. 40. sect of the seventies The most important neo-Christian was the Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World in Sun Myong Moon founded by the Reverend Christianity. dangerous was The Divine Light Mission of Jesus and Buddha. who claimed to be the successor as Charles Manson's.000 in the seventies sexually active and that God is a woman. and meditation.15. The group continues under the "The Family" and is regularly excoriated by conserva tive Christian watchdog groups for its practice of free love as well as its heretical beliefs that Je (called "Flirty Fishing") sus was followers. exposed. to visit America. He was Korea raised by ing family his became until Confucian parents Presbyterians principles in a vision in 1930. Maharaj by thirteen-year-old in in the organization India the 1920s. In 1935. The Children of God. neo-Christ ian sects like Jim Jones' People's Temple rose to prominence. Moon claimed. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . By 1973.213 on Sun. Its Sikh and Hindu philosophy required vegetarianism.78 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS brought to the us in 1971 whose father had founded Ji. Jesus appeared to summon him to ministry. The Divine Mission's commune would its world headquarters: Denver become it centers in claimed 480 thirty-eight countries. of the Unification Seoul in 1954. Moon was born into a farm in 1920. California. American hippies searching for gurus in India in the sixties had appealed toMaharaj Ji. there were The thirty-eight ashrams in the us with to unravel later organization began was when Maharaj Ji's taste for luxury cars and mansions he incurred the wrath of the Di he married. who to India and tried to supplant him with his brother. founded in 1968 as Teens for Christ by returned As the Hindu Beach. Missionaries church were at work in the us from arrived in North ity until Moon 1959 on.183. but there was little public in 1971. were Berg in Huntington came to in number but public attention when they negligible us that the be destroyed by Comet would loudly prophesied "Moses" David Kohoutek name in January 1974.

Mary and her cousin's product husband. lead gui to experiment with tarist. At in meaning the opening and effect to to wor summoning the faithful first Western released Yehudi Menuhin in 1955. Church as just another Asian cult. when he sponsored a mass wedding in Madison Square Garden. but he deserves principal credit for popularizing a were in Anglo-American sitar rock music. continue to regard the Unification for its members. however. the sitar was the European ship. was a collaboration of Indian music. The grooms "World Peace Through Ideal Family. Khan's brother-in in Europe and the us. was not the first British musician it the sitar. Ravi By Shankar. which non-Western adapted harmonics of raga and experimented with the sitar. gave sitar concerts 1959-> Shankar had influenced This content downloaded from 181. riffs Jangling ubiquitous lyrical motif of songs. HINDUISM A main AND 1960S MUSIC into the flowed aperture through which Hinduism the sixties was popular music. George Harrison. for example. by Republican was and hosted by President Richard communism House. chy of the psychedelic as evidenced by the slang term "Moonies" most Americans.075 couples wore badges declaring upholding conservative sixties and disco seventies. by jazz compositions law. The between church in late-sixties equivalent bell. ^n tne late fifties.213 on Sun.15. Moon's Christian theology is un he preaches. the long the Beatles' necked Indian lute. album music. and tabla master Ali Akbar Khan." sexual anar values the family against organization of 2. the zenith of Moon's was 1982. Moon was charged with tax eva in prison. Zachariah. by Korean Commu legislators in the us in the White Nixon In 1981. However. orthodox: 6.Camille Paglia 79 (he had been imprisoned was he welcomed nists).183. that Jesus was illegiti an the of affair between mate. sion and would eventually spend thirteen months for the Unification Church Though massive advertisements still appear inmajor world newspapers. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .

Debussy was fas gamelan on late-nineteenth-century instrument with gong (a percussive by the gamelan and bells) when he heard it played at the Paris Universal Ex in 1889. While beach scenes being filmed in the Bahamas. son began to study Hinduism. signed copy of his book the founder of Sivananda Yoga. He was intrigued by the sitar used in an In restaurant scene filmed in London. with subplot. who was there with her studious sister Prudence. kinship to the electric guitar was dramatically sitar's cul The the (See 1969 documentary. the gamelan's Asian har position monics for transformed French and British classical music cinated the next half century.213 on Sun. New Harrison's the Beatles' Hindu dian were York. the Beatles flew to India to meditate in Rishikesh. at the In 1968. Patti Boyd Harrison. Monterey Pop. into folk circles the sitar in Great Britain. and San Francisco. interest in India began during production of its slapstick second movie. It was Harrison who Yogananda's Autobiography invited Shankar Pop Music demonstrated. took the Bea Mahesh tles to a lecture in London by the Maharishi Yogi. A record of that adven jackets and mod style. in quasi-Hindu fabrics. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .15. Intrigued. Through him. with chic Nehru which revolutionized fashion around the to perform at the seminal 1967 Monterey in California. far afield traveled By the mid-sixties. Harri vananda. Mia Farrow. But their flirtation with Maharishi's ashram Hinduism ruined his advances Farrows ended abruptly in bitter disillusion: the Maharishi sexual saintly reputation by reportedly making to another celebrity pilgrim. George's wife. who gave him a copy of of a Yogi. The Beatles fell under the Maharishi's and began to spell dress paisley world. Festival where the sitar's artistic This content downloaded from 181. He then traveled to India to study the sitar with Ravi Shankar.8o CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS Miles sound Davis had and John Coltrane.183. In 1967. The Beatles and the decamped in high dudgeon.) that of the Javanese tural impact on the late sixties paralleled music. the Beatles were ap a man a in robes who handed them orange proached by on was It Swami Vishnu-De yoga. Help! (1965).

Farrow Maharishi's songs on the 1968 White Al and "Sexy Sadie" ("You made a fool a transsexual tribute to theMaharishi's seduc in two Beatles confirmed the rumored details about the in her 1998 autobiography. and early Pink Floyd. Psyche effects were and used in England in Los Angeles by the Byrds and the the Yardbirds. blunder Away.183.213 on Sun. tion of Hinduism seated vocation in white robes on the stage. Quicksilver Messenger ferson Airplane. tive charms. (like me) who did not take drugs were radicalized the of that shimmering music. The drugged mood of this "trippy" style was revived in British trance music (called as a rave in nineties the of the early "trip-hop") development scene. melodic and twangy. Though in novels and poems. the counter the Beats left their mark culture was were tifacts. and Big Brother and the Holding Company. floating. keys. evaporating lines. give the prayer in Music Festival. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the Rolling Stones. What Falls it was thanks to the Beatles' cross-fertiliza with rock that the Swami Satchidananda. the style of "acid rock" that origi played in Francisco the San nated hippie scene can arguably be con In addition to sound sidered to have promulgate Even those intonations. by Jeff Beck. The leading San Francisco acid-rock bands were Jef the Grateful Dead. dance. rock helped Acid religious sixties concept of cosmic consciousness. Because folk-rock it consists with of transient instrumental chedelic music has received overtly far less attention effects. Service. whose manifest political tent is easier to analyze. drone. experimental less interested This content downloaded from 181. van. However. psy than folk and con lyrics. This is yet another factor impeding of the sixties' religious general recognition legacy. or an electric guitar strung and like one. by the power and expansiveness sonic with ominous its unfixed distortions. modern film and video.15. the Jimi the Beatles. wandering notes. the Kinks. Dono delic Doors Hendrix Experience.Camille Paglia 81 ture is contained bum: "Dear Prudence" of everyone"). would that opened the 1969 Woodstock to the sitar. The ar in constructing self-contained of the sixties achievements enduring generation in music.

penwolf for Tom Wolfe's Except ture crystallized outside Journalism. career began in the late and theorists of the sixties?Mar brilliant O. Literature Literary surveys of the sixties overrely on the work of figures like Norman Mailer. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the book. which was energized by the hyperactive rhythms of the Jazz Age as well as the seditious mood of un This content downloaded from 181. ley sought A cheeky promiscuity was also affected by urban flappers in dance the 1920s. which Art. they experience primary. hipsters often carelessly to the erotic acrobatics of Tantric yoga or reduced Hinduism Kama Sutra (c. But sexual codes have Vatsyayana's been very strict throughout India's history: at no time was endorsed. goes" attitude toward sex. whose forties. Beat interpretations whelmed Asian 1958. Furthermore. about the early life of Buddha. New most sixties cul The gap in the sixties' artistic and intellectual legacy partly occurred because too many young people followed their ele of Asian religion by making sensory mentary understanding schedules and routine. was born in 1877. Shunning dramatized by the otherworldli sought the "eternal Now. not war" was been endorsed a sixties rubric. thought tended to exaggerate "Beat Zen" for its "anything Alan Watts criticized like Percy Bysshe Shel by radical Romantics to of bonds who shatter the bourgeois marriage. Hermann Hesse. Similarly. Norman shall McLuhan. began in i960 with the commercial in history. The yoni and lingam (monumental promiscuity stone genitalia inHindu shrines) or the voluptuous copulat on to a the facades of Hindu temples belonged ing couples the natural fertility cult where sexual intercourse symbolized cycle of birth and death.213 on Sun. finally over the first reliable oral contraceptive of the sixties' spiritual quest. which release of Enovid.183. "Make love. 250 ad).15. Brown?also be long to an earlier generation. and Step (19x7) were sixties cult classics. lowed up poetry." ness of psychedelic the sexual revolution. rock. Free love had In its sexual component. The major critics Leslie Fiedler.82 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS swal art. whose novels Siddhartha (1922). and performance Pop and Conceptual is strikingly underrepresented.

random sexual con scale until the 1960s. Reproductive over own bodies. and visionary low" marijuana and en cocaine. when a nection was blithely assigned spiritual and redemptive it on" meant "Getting freeing mind and body to meaning. as now its should be had which we costs. and have ba bies. a rock soundtrack. establishing was always quarter a major century would issue in feminism and but over the next become an obsessive preoccupation. a soaring divorce rate. tion. high are still sorting out: sexual diseases. leading to premature sexual pressures and demands.) Feminism's pro-choice foregrounding which caused national turmoil and limited its out This content downloaded from 181. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . spirituality "mel change marked by the shift in drugs from communal. paradise of pleas ures even lesbians were no longer welcome. expensive. Many Technicolor connection without film with genuine hippies dropped out of college to join communes. strike a blow against residual American puritanism. Two new models of sexual liberation who emerged in the seventies were the lib erated woman. women's control their rights. Self-presentation by early teens. who put career before marriage and family. obvious. for example. in and the post-Stonewall whose gay man.183. hoarded and a pandemic of media sexualization images with uncer tain consequences for children. Feminism identified itself with abortion?with inextricably termination of life rather than fertility. By the derground a massive hedonistic a had been abandoned. The sixties dreamed open-ended. of feminist. of limitless sex consequence?a bouncy. Others of the sixties generation who entered the pro fessions often defied or delayed the procreative principle that was at the heart of ancient mystery cult. has become strikingly eroticized. which competition sharpened Sexual libera hanced the ego sense of power and mastery. determining campaign politics judicial appointments. (I am speaking as a militantly abortion.Camille Paglia 83 But free love was never achieved on speakeasies.15. lsd to edgy. bake bread. seventies. sex as a quick route to re sixties rebels tried to empower with nature. Feeling trapped by a corporate and technological society.213 on Sun.

15. Iwas merely an observer: as an Italian-American. ephebe Antinous whose reborn: perfection the is by the seventies. Aspir High"?was ing beyond materialism and conformity. Getting high?as rumbling Byrds to elevate Miles song "Eight perspective. by the eighties. where As a libertarian. students that recreational drugs?now give a toxic short-term cocktail gains of but black-market impair tranquilizers?may achievement. Despite a seventies fad ture-revering Whitman for the virile lumberjack look. Imust stress. working-class melted defenses and broke of the sixties generation. 7. free love detached ture meant that.183. heartbreakingly callipygian transient. sixties. that helped trigger the spiritual explosion of the in the magnificent. They functioned sense of unity with mankind as magic elixirs for the miss and rock and roll" was transient society. segment. PSYCHEDELIC DRUGS the fast-track reality for as well as middle-class. creating a momentary and the world. their takers. their ruling theorist would Foucault rather than the na be social constructionist Michel or Ginsberg. intoxicants wine culture. I favor legalization of drugs. beautiful boy. from all reference shaved. a significant barriers.84 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS reach as a populist movement. was one consequence of the loss of sixties cosmic consciousness to na For gay men. drugs. the erotic ideal in the gay male world has reverted over time to the ruthless master type of the Greek sculpted. I am painfully aware of the that drugs took on my generation. Drugs "Sex. I warn my their bodies. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . young people manu This content downloaded from 181. This was one of tragic toll the great cultural disasters of American history. abused until they turned on Nevertheless. In ing initiatory rituals in an increasingly the matter of drugs.213 on Sun. long-term it was drugs. not because I in my view government approve of their use but because individuals do with should have no power to dictate what On the other hand. I am a product of Mediterranean are integrated with cuisine.

would be eagerly supplied by an un economy.183. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In his 1901-02 lectures. published as The Edinburgh Varieties of Religious Experience. women middle-class took experiments America. period. by the next cen the center of a flourishing international tury. Non-prescription possession caine was banned in the us by the Harrison Narcotics Act of create which crime.Camille Paglia 85 their own martyrdom. his response De Quincey's Confessions of an English Opium the hallucinations of his (1821). Baudelaire described with hashish mixed white In late-nine with opium. like alco 1914. British High "mystery" and "The Rime of drugs with the avant-garde began with Romanticism. which he believed duplicated the between drugs so basic a tenet of the This content downloaded from 181. ism and postmodernism.15. had arrived in China from India via Burma in the seventeenth century. That cosmic con creative sciousness writers is precisely what and academics. present in laudanum. for their "nerves" or "female ailments. Samuel Taylor Coleridge's great poems of the 1790s ("Kubla Khan. helped Drugs.213 on Sun. China was of opium and co opium trade." "Christabel. communities a derivative of morphine. its vast energies twisting and turning along a continuum from the brain to the stars. James first studied the connection and mystic vision that would become 1960s. James described his exper iments with nitrous oxide. to Thomas Eater In Artificial Paradises (i860)." were partly in of the Ancient Mariner") his with spired by experiences opium. They pushed their nervous to social the until forms seemed to dissolve. teenth-century "patent medicines" containing opium. the seedpod of the opium poppy. saw was What sublime?the vision of they High Romantic factured nature." In the same common in Chinese opium dens were immigrant around San Francisco. a common to which he had been addicted pain medication since childhood. The association is lacking in too many of today's especially followers of poststructural cynical systems that are blind to na ture. systems limit. extracted from Opium. organized hol during derground William Prohibition.

British American mond who research a convention psychiatrist attending in Los Angeles.) Huxley's was Humphrey a in taking mescaline partner Osmond. drugs. Peyote California. home.86 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS altered perception reported by saints in their visions of God or angels. it remains and extremism The Beats used peyote. inspired the name of the Los Angeles art-rock band. derived from mescal buttons. James skeptically viewed foundational religious as "nervous obsessives afflicted with figures instability. however." venturism for the effect of the term "psychedelic" on the brain. arrived there hemian Greenwich Village by 1957.183.213 on Sun. where he described own his (a synthetic version of the experiment with mescaline chemical agent in mescal) the prior year at his Hollywood (Huxley's title. It had been used since the Aztecs." he described ritual use Indians plant. "Magic" mushrooms for ("'shrooms" were also used short) containing psychotropic by psylocibin and Neil Cassady had been the Beats: Ginsberg. Kerouac. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . of a cactus with mescal say in The Doors of Perception (1954). given them by Timothy Leary in i960 after his return from summer vacation inMexico. Later transmogrified into "psy the best word for the garish mental ad of the sixties. in bo the legal right (revoked in 1990) to use peyote in its religious rituals. were marijuana and lsd. where he had first tried them. mescaline the next year. In i960. obtained himself had experi cited Ellis' es Southwestern American in London.15. Leary called his program the Harvard Psylocibin sixties' premiere This content downloaded from 181. Ginsberg took peyote in New York in 1951 and Kerouac use was the following year. based on a Blake maxim. Snyder first tried peyote while Indian culture at studying American in 1948." Havelock Ellis was more Artificial "Mescal: A New among from the button mented in an 1898 article. He Aldous Huxley of mescal. the Native American Church of North America won common at Big Sur. Association Psychological invented of the It is Os hallucinogens chedelia. who Reed College chewed the buttons or steeped them in a bitter tea. sympathetic: Paradise. the Doors. Before The he began investigating Project.

The Beats who made a cult of be-bop jazz (a style evolving from the late thirties through the mid-fifties) imitated black musicians' habit of smoking then used by white folk musicians the country via leftist circles. as search drug. "Everybody must through Dylan's that marijuana was get stoned. the us. lingered 1965 song.") The cia conducted its This content downloaded from 181. mann. Before World War 1." Marijuana and spread across was cities during the Great Migra and after World War 1. ritu produce the effects of peyote in ancient Mesoamerican als. Because sense of space and time in it seemed to mimic the warped lsd was first viewed as a promising mental-re psychosis. Itwas in a major Midwestern politics. then confined class. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . line. Marijuana entered with migrant Mexican the us in the early twentieth century in Texas. In 1949. For white had users in the fifties and and therefore. was synthesized from rye fungus in 1938 by Dr. Humphrey Osmond tested it in Saskatchewan a potential lsd also seemed to re treatment for alcoholism. Max Rinkel brought lsd from Sandoz to in Boston. Marijuana the working use.183. where he began experiments ("Sandoz" as a lsd as term in in code for the the Animals' uk.213 on Sun. who used it for fiber for rope and ship rigging. was to rural the South and blacks spread through brought by and Northeastern tion for factory jobs during the urban centers that marijuana became associated with mu sic and the underground?a last that would hip marriage through the sixties and beyond." from "Rainy Day Woman") transmitted to college students in the sixties?the first time it had entered sixties. Albert Hof a biochemist at Sandoz Pharmaceuticals in Basel. The hemp farm workers it comes was introduced to North America plant from which in the sixteenth century by the Spanish. marijuana the aura of creativity "reefer. hence the term "acid") LSD-25 (lysergic acid diethylamide.Camille Paglia 87 lsd. Dr. the middle class. "A Girl Named Sandoz. Switzerland. It was Bob folk music (cf.15.New Orleans was and port for marijuana shipments from Mexico to Cuba. Hofmann discovered the chemical's hallucino progressive genic effects when he inhaled it by accident in 1943.

The book's Based on the Tibetan subtitle. being used in Greenwich Village by 1961 and was on the East and West Coasts the next year. A Manual Book was showed the religious cast that drug-taking of the Dead. It was popularized by a 1964 book by and Richard The Timothy Leary Alpert. novelist Ken Kesey first took lsd in 1959 (the same "Acid Test" par year that Ginsberg did) and later conducted ties at his home in the hills near San Francisco. In The Teachings to high of choice for and in particular. In his 1970 bestseller. Yale Law School professor Charles as an indispensable celebrated marijuana revolution.15. Neil Cassady was evolved part of these carnivalesque gatherings. His recantation resem juana offenses) was denouncing bled that of Alpert. Chemical a friend of Leary. itwas widespread in the San Francisco Bay it confused the political climate on the Left. a As student volunteer at a California veterans acquiring.213 on Sun. who went to India in 1967 and became Baba Ram Dass. lsd had become a major street drug Sixties. in the Berkeley a year. toured the us in a Day-Glo-painted 1939 school bus. hospital. claims were made for lsd in the sixties." Drug taking was also a gesture of rebellion against Western commercial ism: marijuana?called "weed" or "mother nature" the intoxicant light its organic character?was martinis or scotch those who rejected the businessman's sodas. Reich similarly "truth-serum" that exposed society as "unreal. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .) Within in cities nationally. which a free-form hippie group that the Merry Pranksters. drug takers savored with the "vision quest" of tribal of Don Juan (1968). By the into late sixties.88 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS own tests on lsd lsd was available from 1951 through the decade. where Mark Kitchell's first-rate 1990 documentary. that lsd's that of "the Copernican The Greening of America. Walter Houston a 1969 book.183. By the summer of 1964. a drug-free Hindu guru. (See area. predicted in and Reli Ecstasy: Psychedelic Drugs intellectual effect on civilization would equal Clark. Psychedelic Experi ence. On the West Coast associations psychedelics' shamans. For ex Hyperbolic ample." gion. the first of This content downloaded from 181. Kesey for mari (who was jailed for five months lsd.

North America. drugs as well as a vehicle became an affirmation pre of multi the The psychedelic "trip" secret he from which returned with shaman's magic journey. fers). for example.) Furthermore. by Apollo. Fault lines have recently been identified in the bedrock the Eleusinian at Delphi by an archaeologist and geologist. without in instruction he had received that pey stantiation. Drugs European The stick ritual iconic Halloween is another staffs were image of the witch version of the shaman's smeared with flying on a broom visionary journey: a greenish hallucinogenic to autoerotic effect. spiritual ote from a Yaqui Indian shaman inMexico. oracle went Possessed the Delphic mysteries.213 on Sun. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .Camille Paglia 89 sub several best-sellers. It is possible that hallucinatory shamanism was widespread in Native American cultures because it was brought from Siberia by the Indians' North Asian ancestors when they emigrated across the Bering Strait. have history In some cases. By establishing continuity Columbian culturalism or solidarity with Native American and societies. is especially fertile in hallucinogenic Even the of strong tobacco (nicotiana rustica) species plants. into paroxysms after intoxication by fumes from a cleft in the earth. perhaps mushrooms. Carlos Casta?eda claimed. of religious revelation. ointment and "ridden. Hallu were used by worshippers in cinogens. techniques of flagel and facilitate divination. Mush rooms eaten by Siberian shamans caused convulsions.15." This content downloaded from 181. such as fasting and marathon drum to been used throughout induce trance ming. whose devotees claim to attain a beatific state. who was the that maddened priestess speculate by oozing petro like ethylene chemical vapors (prized by modern glue-snif were in also used medieval witchcraft. for his tribe. rituals had hallucinogenic used in Native American proper ties. ("Shaman" is a in contrast Ural-Altaic word. This myth of a spiritual journey was knowledge a motif of premodern societies from Central Asia to the Ama zon River basin. to Africa.183. into inner space replicated ritual practices. resemble those of the modern lation or mutilation S&M Many scene.

This overestimation energy reason Sex was taking in the sixties. there was permanent damage that has never been it is clear. redefined the culture and set the stage and college students system. which temperate tivals. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . for ex assessed. Leary.213 on Sun. Gary This content downloaded from 181. began For example. and Beat poets Lawrence Ferlinghetti.90 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS The massive drug leaders and pop for the decade's religious vision. however. Jericho." subtitled "A California. attracted 25. Social Gathering Francisco's the Tribes. which urged the liberation of sexual desire.15. the the sixties generation. A philosophy of random freed of social controls built little that could be and "good vibrations" on to next At its mildest.183.000 people. agent: the estab portrayed as a revolutionary like of the walls would fall before eros un lishment. they ianism?and rock music. MYSTICISM SOCIAL the generational dramatized change of regroupings mass gatherings of demonstrations. passed cult of sex and drugs led to a frivolous dilettantism. literary and Ken Kesey were sadly truncated AND contacts by drug abuse. CHANGE 8. At its worst. Alan Watts. Timothy and Snyder. Hippies were relative strangers and hallucinogens one is inherently benign?was for the dissipation of the authentic spiritual discover ies made by the sixties generation." which was held in 1967 in San It Golden Gate Park. happenings. the "Human Be-In. fused politics with pop music and Asian religiosity: the lead of ing San Francisco speakers (many acid-rock in Hindu bands garb) were the among performed. the sixties?the rock fes in and love-ins. Allen Ginsberg. promoted by arts stars. systematically careers meteoric of that the Allen Ginsberg ample. of sex?the faith that sexual bound. But shamanistic drug taking in tribal societies took place within uni small communities fied by a coherent belief casually sampling of private turmoils and family brought with them a m?lange was a yearning humanitar What shared psychodramas. youthful high jinks like the Florida spring flings of the fifties. In retrospect.

ad of the slow process and banal practicalities and financial accounting. bickering mob August months later at the Altamont Festival. sixties code of "do your but produced own thing" indi encouraged the sixties' Similarly. was Catholicism. by the ex Repelled of the fifties. Fifties lib its Leftism. The sixties never completed committed music-loving its search eralism claims for new structures of social but sixties affiliation. integrationist. Early Christianity. the sixties counterculture panding bureaucracies was suspicious of hierarchy and embraced a simplistic egali on quick fixes. Roman for social credibility. sexual race. by gender. searching steadily of itself immigrant working-class purging ethnicity. a process at church status by empty ritual. Pros were with social concerned perous congregations overly or at its annex. distracted began in Jerusalem. primitive entity history. into of the disintegrated separatism reclassifications and hyper identity politics. global inspired by fleeting contact with religious Hinduism and Buddhism. then reveres them as ancestral spirits.213 on Sun. The basic principle of tarianism predicated as communality but ended as the in social horde. where a murder was in front of the stage. despite of inclusiveness. with ghettoizing sensitive divisions and orientation. ministration. the country club. was a benign at the Woodstock The fragmentation.15.183. the po Temple bureaucracy litical and professional elite were still heavily wasp. as a rural rebellion against the fossilized vidualism This content downloaded from 181. extended Music family Festival the of in stargazers a four 1969 turned into restless. It looks for leaders but ruth lessly slays them. Cults multiply when institutional religion has lost fervor and become for example. cults and cultic belief. In 1950s America. vision.Camille Paglia 91 at such sentiments of young people the political events were progressive. would broaden yet dissipate into the thousand cults of the present New Age movement. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . As a the counterculture the most began survival horde The response to its own flood of anarchic generates automatically sixties horde that was energies. there was often little understanding While of legislation. The horde is prey to superstition and panic.

strongly rhythmic had been banned in Christian churches presence in Southern church tradition West African tribal religion.183. But when buttressed by military is a loss there have overexpanded.15. and ceremony. politics rein rise of which hence the of psychological cults. Hel and mercantile declined. Cosmopolitanism by vibrant commercialism of this kind sooner did the us displace Great Britain and France to status after World War 11 than a surge of superpower the next American overtook generation. the old city-states flourished. universal Dance. The Romans had al in borrowed Italian mythology ways clothed their provincial itself from republic to empire. pagan cults. is a priceless vestige Its of resemble. throughout high culture?spread the Mediterranean world via a bustling commercial network that marketed Greek art works (often in shoddy knockoffs) as status symbols for the nouveau riche. No attain Europe. security. who would reach col a jolt of conceived in had with been the sixties. Greek glory.92 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS of genteel self-Protestantization decor that inmiddle-class parishes in music.213 on Sun. The social changes from the fifties to the sixties in compressed era following three centuries and accelerated the conquests of the Alexandrian in late antiquity. is now virtually complete. metropolises Athenian lenism?that is. form. rooted in the South. invited emotional and physical expressiveness. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . But they intuitively absorbed the hidden conflicts of dren born This content downloaded from 181. lege age con a were in national climate reared of energy and military fidence. The chil mysticism in the postwar baby boom. stimulated by in music. force the borders of individual identity. those of the Hellenistic In the the Great. of those attracted to cults in the sixties and early sev Many enties were escaping mainline denominations where bland It is a striking propriety was coupled with sexual repression. of Alexander age. fact that few young African-Americans joined cults: surely the reason was that the gospel tradition. As it transformed Rome changes Northern created a massive zone of cultural East extending from the Near and religious ex and North Africa to is usually produced might.

183. A major in America was the massive institutional shift of the of col expansion In the two decades following the Gi subsidized higher education for veterans. and violence.Camille Paglia 93 its surface tranquility masking the anxieties the fifties. which or the Beatles to to Monterey was for the Greco-Ro fifties and system em language of commercialized Hellenism era. which not the case in other nations. emotional. broadcast by a vast number of an artistic and philosophic The unifying mythology. has always been luridly Hellenistic?extravagant. nineteenth-century lywood. popular sixties. By became an entitlement?still This content downloaded from 181. Mass media was inflamed framework with a predilection the social for sex postwar period leges and universities. nomic The international network of Roman roads structed interstate that some are still in use) resembles system. it has rightly been called cultural imperialism. American Popular culture re so vital and dominant that the general style of American mass village. Television has as McLuhan indeed turned the world. Mainstream depression as to recover if the reassurance moted duty and uniformity. Hellenism was with culture was for the American bedded pagan on was new media?TV. with life experiences had been eco of an older generation whose fifties values pro and war. launched in the fifties highway (so well-con that of the us as a na tional defense proved too. export. the mind. America's pop rope) portable in the fifties and bounced back Hellenism spread to England in the sixties mains a major via the British invasion. Trade always opens up travel and tourism. in rooted tabloids and early Hol media. and rock 'n' roll.15. of known limits. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . global and sensationalistic. in Eu privately owned am radio stations (then unparalleled on and received transistors. Multiculturalism got Ravi Shankar India and back. What man plan for emergency evacuation. college Bill. into a prophesied. youth culture from the mid-1950s teen movies. im and nationalism transportation weakens regionalism was so quickly spurred by the jet plane. Ironically.213 on Sun. However. while being rigidified.

There have exemption since the goliardic of town-gown carousing problems were the Middle Ages. When tony British schools. America vation. their material comforts and privileges. self is whose education industry perpetuating principal product culti brand names and social status rather than humanistic the eighties. the Roman legions. but the frictions of the sixties highly sixties counterculture As the campuses spread. The down side was that Fifties was including marriage. who occupied well-appointed outposts camps of of design. geometrical Roman soldiers were drawn not simply from Italy but from This content downloaded from 181. politicized. confined tives. while men could roam free.15. Americans school. in parallel still acted colleges Parietal rules were of American regimentation colleges was paternalistic as a can thus be viewed and vestige of the na nearly military con 11. at my public university. women students enforced: strictly had to sign in at 11:00 pm. Students were of World War tional mobilization The surplus. was indefinitely postponed. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . students stacked in primary-school public student-teacher lectures. Despite sixties were also cap students of the American middle-class adulthood.183. hostages tional frames without identification of at their hormonal the venerable height in institu or in-group history Classes like became rows? contact was Super intru with warehouses. where is either in tutorial or in unmonitored vision of student behavior sive and authoritarian?another Iwas a freshman Europe. precise. Hence the late fifties and sixties were a period of high exci tation yet repressive containment. unlike European universities. and the new scripts who often dressed in army-navy facto resembled brick dormitories of residential campuses more or ironic since college ma the ries army barracks?all from the draft. therefore. triculation brought been became tense garrison like the frontier towns. meant that middle-class young prosperity did not have to go to work immediately after high as their parents had done.94 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS in the grip of an overpriced. in loco parentis (in place of the parent).213 on Sun. on American campuses feature without in 1964.

The baby-boom generation was the first to grow up in the shadow of nuclear war. we were into dim hallways for civil defense drills re shepherded us to crouch down and cover our eyes.Camille Paglia 95 the empire. slim. The cult fate subject phenomenon of John F.15. years and decades?in at Hadrian's Wall in northern Britain. strangely omnipotent object that could find its way over thousands of miles to unleash a mon in a split second. are tolia still being found. syncretistic drugs. This with a mystical reason for the sudden popularity is one possible and ubiq that would melt the nation for most of the twentieth century uity of astrology.213 on Sun. the from and album sixties. paralleled campuses was a re when there mix of Asian sixties. Mithraists. and with their international blousy Persian trousers. I submit. lanky hair. symbolism permeated jewelry covers to wall posters. We were quiring taught to fear not a rain of bombs from manned warplanes but rather a single. the bull-slayer. They were notorious all over devotees with of cults. in other words. and pop idolatry. Kennedy in 1963 ? calated after the assassination the president who vowed to surpass the Soviet Union's 1957 Sputnik satellite by putting a man on the moon by the end of the sixties. sense of awe and doom about the sky. gods seem weak or fickle or to in the us es themselves. In elementary school. like early Christians. They were stationed far from home for or forts in the Sahara. his androgynous face. ist orientation. Amid the ruins of Roman a great act of ritual camps in England and cult objects and idols from Egypt. Syria. Cultic practice on the Roman fron in the that on American tier. were another a group who venerated Mithras. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Phrygian beret. Zoroastrian the principle of light and representing demigod truth. and Ana Germany. on the Danube. Merchants. cave-like rooms to memorialize bloodshed." the signature song of strous fire cloud ligion. had been injected The sixties generation. which had been a fringe practice eccentrics in associated with Greenwich Zodiac and Tarot Village and West Hollywood. the official Cults arise when This content downloaded from 181. above all that of Mithras. "Aquarius.183. gathered in secrecy in small.

lost their ability to defend Those most attracted to astrology This of superstition refuse to ac rightly dismissive modern theories about that astrology anticipated knowledge or cycles of solar flares whose electro circadian biorhythms it.213 on Sun. astrol was in the Hellenistic and imperial Ro ogy widely practiced man periods. humanity is yet another area where sixties drugs took their toll. assumed public lore in its imagery of the moon of astrological in knowledge the seventh house and Jupiter's alignment with Mars: "Then peace will guide the planets / And love will steer the stars. to reverently connects which like the tides is subject. / This And is the dawning of the Age poetry. a Chi ogy nese book of divination widely used in the sixties. Like the / Ching. Scientists magnetic storms disrupt telecommunications. First refined by the Chaldean magi of Babylonia." 1967) and a hit single for the Fifth Dimension in 1969. when elusive fortune was personified as female or Lady Luck. The science customary community's approach of derision and debunk an immense alter has been futile and ing counterproductive: native culture survived the collapse of the sixties and has spread to this day under its astrological elides discreetly steadily Aquarius. efforts from Despite unstinting in wiping has never succeeded the name New reference to Age?which the Age of This content downloaded from 181. was emblematic of the reli It sixties. Different branches of astrol Tyche?chance in still flourish India and China." of Aquarius!" "Mystic With crystal genuine / revelation Astrology. the song also invoked the mind's true liberation.183.15. gious vision about nuclear ian Aquarian pagan for better or worse.96 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS Hair ("An American Tribal Love-Rock Musical. of the countered the fifties' paranoia apocalypse with age. to has tried is not the fa Christianity always Astrology to talistic determinism which its opponents reduce it. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Astrology the promise is intertwined of a humanitar with the West's antiquity. on the it is a study of nature's contrary. rhythms and cycles. astrology man to nature?the link that Judeo sever. heritage. Judeo-Christianity astrology out.

rather impressionistic seeking "spirituality" than the discipline of orthodox religion. Its followers run the stress relief from harried office workers gamut seeking to "neo-pagan" white witches through yoga and meditation rendezvousing stice. Paradise Now. the festival goers wallowing New adjusted to the stubborn per Age. a It is constellation force competing with mainline religions. The one common described it inher theme in New Age is cosmic consciousness. to plunge fully into matter. healing crystals. It is often and soft-focus. THE RISE OF NEW AGE The New Age movement began to form in the late seventies. massage rollers. infamous 1968 performance successors and early seventies is that the sixties sought through the shattering of social the title of the Living Theater's piece. however. angel icons. in the eighties.213 on Sun. New Age is a marvel of Alexandrian syncretism. An analogy might be the introspective period just be in 70 ad. has smoothly sistence of the social structures that the sixties failed to budge. Because it is unstructured commercial as a New Age has been underestimated and decentralized. like in the mud atWoodstock. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . when fore and after the destruction of Jerusalem New the Roman seemed empire Age is much insuperable. table fountains. The sixties wanted brace and reclaim the senses.15.183. says it all. paraphernalia Age?amulets incense. bath salts. which ited from the sixties. ganism. candles. where nude actors infil to em trated the audience. European pa Its ethics can be nature-cult. aromatherapy wind chimes. and became an international gained visibility success in the nineties. or Celtic moods. and Native American as non-judgmental humanism.Camille Paglia 97 9. This content downloaded from 181. of beliefs loosely drawn from Asian religion. Specialty ual on the moors to celebrate the summer sol shops and mail-order catalogs supply the rit of New and talismans. in Asian and recordings of trance music A principal distinction sixties between cults and their New Age the release of primal energy conventions.

like soup In sixties Pop Art. hammered In gnosti than society. itself. This nineteenth-century spiritualism. cism. The it is matter 1960s. by sex valorized power of rock music. material one. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . into when themselves and that. The sixties at their most radical collapsed spirit into matter. and moved she had Thought. in his 1992 book of (typified today has always Orphism") as evil which defines matter religion" the same name. Psychedelic the concrete to corroborate "I am claimed the Zen voyagers insight. Harold or tran permeating from idea descends a late Romantic stream that through Anglo-American history of literary and artistic has argued. to the us recovered with whom with from in 1873.15. a New the same moment?Mary and Helena Blavatsky. rather in contrast. the soul. like an undercurrent has flowed culture beneath the official Bloom modernism. reincarnation. that chains Age. had fused Hindu and Buddhist concepts from Tran the mental-health based on Anton Mes hypnotherapy." eighteenth-century This content downloaded from 181. that "the American by what he tartly calls "California been a version of gnosticism.183. Quimby. New Age sees a spiritual scending the visible." "becoming" feeling flowing the chair or wall?a perception commonly reported by schiz ophrenics. and urges the soul's emancipation The gnostic cults of second-century and Jewish Christianity were influenced by Hellenistic mystery mysticism religions as well as Plato's as in New dualism of mind versus matter. even mundane cans or sponges become or commercial luminously ani The American ancestry of New Age began in the nine teenth century with two women who did their central work at virtually Baker Eddy. grandiosely and redefined heaven as present sensual ecstasy. she studied in Maine. Eddy (1821-1910) believed chronic invalidism through New Quimby scendentalism mer's of Phineas Parkhurst philosophy In the 1840s. from earthly limitation. who was born in Russia Englander. objects mate.98 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS more concerned with the afterlife?past universe lives. For theory of "animal magnetism.213 on Sun. astral projection.

For Christian and miracles Science. and ill and Eddy. are Marianne Other leading figures of this movement a author and inspirational Williamson. she first won This content downloaded from 181. Deepak Chopra also be came identified with Alternative Medicine. technique can stem aging and bring success and wealth." the best of East and West. From his clinic at the of Arizona. only divine can or not heal." Both of Williamson's parents were lib "therapeutic eral Jewish lawyers inHouston. Quimby rejected Chris as not. power. ayureveda. from Quimby. style holistic approach combining After his split from the Maharishi. medicine. Her books are Jungian in ori entation but feature secular. multicultural prayers. the material world Quimby ness has no real existence. Eddy Health (1875). in his 1972 book. Her major influence remains A Course a breakdown in Miracles read after having (1976).213 on Sun. bestselling speaker a following in Los Angeles in the early eighties. and touch. physicians The which Medical line from Eddy to New Age can clearly be seen in the movement of the 1980s and 1990s. Medicine Asian that Eddy had erased the restored concepts Alternative a graduate of the Harvard Andrew Weil. promulgates can icine that claims disease be cured by opening the organ ism to cosmic energy. Scientist. was shortly followed by her founding of the focuses on the parables Church of Christ.183. and "medical intuitive" who Bernie who who divines advocates illness by reading a patient's "energy field" and healing through accupressure. claimed that altered consciousness is necessary for healing.15. From the Chopra at the La Costa Resort near San his headquarters a traditional Hindu med he Diego. he criticizes commercial pharmaceuti University " a sixties as toxic and calls for cals integrad ve medicine. can cure disease. reflexology.Camille Paglia 99 is an illusion. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . a at Haven Hospital trained Yale-New surgeon Siegel. Her seminal did book. and who claims that "creative visualization" a lapsed Catholic Caroline Myss. The Natural Mind. School who had studied the effects of marijuana. Chopra also alleges that his mind Center. Science and tianity. However. which in her twenties. which of Jesus.

she was baptized a Baptist. A Course for Inner Peace in Miracles was published by the Foundation Its orginal name in New York was Mill Valley. Madame his spiritualistic of Blavatsky readings to have acquired secret knowledge claimed through seven years of study in Tibet. was alchemy. our sole in its Christian it descends from Eddy vestiges: an as our "inner be should internal "Voice" identified guide Jesus. devout the Foundation for Para-Sensory Investigation. which eso Western the and Buddhist with bined Hindu concepts teric tradition. associated with cob Boehme. influenced by their in black maid. Though non-sectarian. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .ioo CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS dictated of A Course inMiracles were allegedly over seven years to Helen Cohn Schucman by Jesus a at Columbia-Presbyterian Med (1909-81). William Thetford. Whitson. S. At twelve. The three volumes Schucman's father was Jew the typing from her notebooks.213 on Sun. G. Age Blavatsky who won an enormous international following.183.15. R. Schucman vis and Christian Theosophy ited Lourdes with her family. identified with This content downloaded from 181. sne an<l Henry com founded the Theosophical Steele Olcott Society. The second of New censured by Blake for Swedish philosopher teenth-century the Bible." German mystic. at thirteen. meaning the seventeenth-century was "divine wisdom. psychologist did ical Center inNew York. is The Course asserts that the universe pure love and that sin does not exist." women of the nineteenth-century progenitors was the Helena occultist (1831-91). ish and Lutheran. Mead. Her fame re an eigh that of Emanuel called but exceeded Swedenborg. Blavatsky (Theosophy. When at the Italian Renaissance. reflecting the of its interest Skutch director. Ja is immanent in nature. Judith longstanding in parapsychology. ticism from the third century ad. while her mother had had contact with Science.) A Her gnos was Her and meticum. California. InNew York in 1875. rediscovered meticum boosted incorrectly the fashion for magic. a densely symbolic work of Greco-Egyptian who its manuscript the Corpus Neoplatonism and astrology. taught that God the Corpus translated ally. A colleague.

Krishnamurti the Order of the the messiah and dissolved Star of the East. A substantive result of her pres be the renewal of interest in ancient San skrit religious texts. the cult that had been built around him. Blavatsky's lapsed Catholic anointed successor. Besant declared that a four Indian boy. she rejected the spookhouse Though ums and s?ances.183. Krishnamurti to Ojai. Buddha. to establish in 1986. he died there nia. Another was by Madame Blavatsky a born in Ken Edgar Cayce (1877-1945). Isis Unveiled (1877) and The Se Madame tried to unify (1888). sne converted In 1909. Besant. Jiddu Krishnamurti (spotted at a colleague. But to teach his theosophical continued system of "self In 1969. clairvoyant tucky who toured the us for 40 years doing "life readings" and promoting as a his belief in reincarnation. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ." moved the Krishnamurti Foundation. of Egypt's magic arts. Charles Webster Lead In 1929. Blavatsky world religions by their shared mysticism.Camille Paglia ioi In her two major works. In 1878.213 on Sun. movement and the for Indian national ism. and seventies the Cayce prepared and eighties channel influenced way This content downloaded from 181. Dismissed figure directly charlatan by mainstream for sixties occultists journalists. was the messianic denied he he was Despite having to of Atheism (1877). Her work also be cret Doctrine longs to the nineteenth-century Egyptian Revival (spurred by invasion its of with views romanticized Napoleon's Egypt). was a written The Theosophy Gospel in 1889.15. Theosophical Society would ence Gandhi. teen-year-old beach by her pedophiliac beater). Madame Blavatsky because of her histrionic spiritualism of medi in the lost credibility West poses as a high priestess with But her influ healing powers. which were translated and disseminated around the world. Madame Blavatsky went to India and later made Madras the international headquarters of her Theosophical ence in India would Society. providing the raw material for the twen as movements tieth century's well as the spiritual healing Western practice of yoga. Nehru. Annie and former Fabian socialist. Califor awareness.

called Illuminati. teeming spiritualistic art images. He took mescaline among them Diary This content downloaded from 181. Burma. Throughout Irish Protestant his flam tanical. such as Benjamin Revolution. Franklin and George Washington. and Ceylon.) England secret. who that his wife was and who used Rosicrucian and astrological medium symbol ism in his poetry. originally combined Asian mysticism with career. a puri sect.15. it too Lead world?Mexico. founded by three Freemasons interested Temple William in Rosicrucian opened a believed Butler Yeats. of the Golden Dawn would have great impact the 1960s: the Satanist Aleister Crowley (1875-1947). The Rosicrucians. Z. who were Plymouth Brethren. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Its cabalistic includes the and Hermetic cross. whose anti was a clerical creed coolly intellectual Deism. publications. of the American guilds?though and Jerusalem.213 on Sun. where he learned of a Dope in 1910. part of the Romantic of demonic arche legacy femmes fatales. cere its association medieval a had been the interchanges and in eighteenth-century Freemasonry. and rose. as well as for today's New Age psychics and mind-readers. crucians There between Isis Urania thought. imagery claimed their esoteric and was pyramid. The Order's was in London in 1888. Knight ("Ramtha"). Crowley A member on family. however. One member (The Nazis because of borrowed the swastika with from the Rosi chivalry. was The nineteenth-century fin de si?cle in Europe and the us with and sodalities.183. in Fiend (1922) and Magick from Egypt. Crowley boyant affluent British Western occultism self-destructed in quarrels and black magic. He wrote many books.I02 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS ers like Jane Roberts ("Seth") and J. he began traveling the India. rebelled against his who joined the order in 1898. Rosicrucians monial claimed order with descent roots in medieval Babylon. ing figures were Masons. yoga. in ancient Egypt order was founded to Europe by knightly crusaders. types from a glorified Satan to spellbinding was The most prominent British organization the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. brought it probably dates from the seventeenth century. swastika. After the Golden Dawn in 1900.

second from left) in the cartoon cover collage of their landmark Sergeant Pep per album (1967).213 on Sun. of Crowley Beatles inserted Crowley's face (back row. in California Sixties Satanism was nurtured by Anton of The Szandor La Vey (born Howard Levey in Illinois). The re-released Aleister (1929-30). An advocate of Crowley-style Crowley's creed of radical sexual "indulgence" to be the master liberation. that opened branches in the us. From 1912. reading scripture in seventies rock included David Bowie admirers Crowley and heavy-metal song. Jimmy Page. The his mansion. influence Crowley's enties. But lingering from Afro-Caribbean in classic Rolling Stones songs and the magic the Satanism on Led Zeppelin's album covers and stage cos pentagrams tumes came from Crowley.15. fell heavily on the late sixties and sev freedom. Vey had been practicing Black Arts since the fifties. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . His politics were pro-Nazi?a dismaying detail usu ally lost in his legend. whose on Satan's call"). the Ordo Templis Orientis. Zeppelin's virtuoso voodoo element lead guitarist. ap "Mr. Boleskine House. The author La Satanic Bible (1970). collected Crowley memorabilia and bought on Scotland's Loch Ness. The Confessions was in 1969. musicians like Ozzy Osbourne. including "The Great Beast" total sexual (1929). Crowley led a Ger man cult. which the Beatles fad for backwards messages I cannot confirm) to is said what (on authority popularized. his autobiography. who in of medieval Satanic rituals.Camille Paglia 103 Theory and Practice apocalyptic 666 as his personal number. in rock songs. In 1966. It is rumored that the title song's first line to Crowley's alludes ("It was twenty years ago today") death in 1947. have been reverse lauded the practice of inspired by Crowley. La This content downloaded from 181. Crowley" ("You waited peared on his first solo album after leaving Black Sabbath. and took the Anti-Christ's in Eng of Crowley had been published Biographies land in 1958 and 1959. Because of its descent from blues?called the a in the American "devil's music" South?rock had already cults. he proclaimed Satanic principle. Crowley advocated He and called himself orgies bestiality.183.

according Polanski's occult hit film. by science-fiction at had met Crowley shapers of New Age thought.i04 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS Vey founded the Church with of Satan at his home house where he nude women in San Fran conducted tribal ani cisco. the is said to have been inspired by "Hotel California. whose address was 6114 California A startling and little-known example of Crowley's founded in 1954 ing influence is the Church of Scientology." among reportedly which may have them) did visit La once been a hotel. The drills used by Scientologists claimed the mind are fusion a reinterpretation of evidently of Asian meditation with Satanic will. appear as Satan in Roman not. Age thought was George Gurdjieff was a half-Greek Armenian who arrived inMos to have spent twenty years gather is that morality and man analyzed This content downloaded from 181. After Madame Blavatsky.213 on Sun. to rumor. Dianetics: The guid The Crowley and clarify Crowley's ritualism. singular which sharpens the all-conquering of Hubbard's ing premise mega-bestseller. Science of Mental Health Modern (1950). temple revealed Hubbard that his father successor: to be Crowley's on was born told him that Scientology the day that to cleanse died. are mere and if remorse. Scientology's the 1RS for its tax-exempt can in its theory of reincarnation: be detected the religiosity "process" allegedly eradicates negative thoughts and experi ences predating our life in the womb.183. Scientology. aged?as guilt to be jettisoned. Celebrities and lib ertines (Mick Jagger "Black House.15. Hubbard son in the latter's Los Angeles Hubbard's has 1945. Eagles' rites at Street. Rosemary's Baby (1968). which attracts celebri baggage ties like John Travolta and Tom Cruise. endur Vey's One of the most brilliant songs of the seventies. black masses mal masks an all-black Victorian perkily in lavish. has been pursued by status as a religion. nor did he have any connection with itwhatever." La Vey's house. the most important architect of six ties-to-New Gurdjieff cow in 1913 and claimed (1866-1949). and can be scientifically spirituality in the Crowley way. writer Ron Hubbard. La Vey did (photos survive). 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . one of the main L. Contrary to his daughter.

created his "Fourth Way. to fuse comparative the sixties spirit in its explicit mission springs religion with Gurdjieff thinkers art and ecology. As from Mecca ing esoteric spiritualist knowledge a refugee in France after the Russian Revolution. which religious a Western is humanistic Esalen pure example of psychology. of monious relocated Man. nestled the sea. remains the symbol of the en overlooking Asian combines concepts with terprise. Gurdjieff's in 1922 to Paris.183. Development "the Work." Based on a method called and Sufi mysticism. inNew York Branches demon Gurdjieff in 1924 but spent most of his of the Gurdjieff Foundation opened revolution.213 on Sun. Hinduism. can seen in influence be the Esalen Institute. he oddly gave himself a German name in adulthood. phia. Eventually. Gurdjieff a mixture of Tantric Buddhism. California.15. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In the late sixties. in 1953 and m San Francisco in 1958. graduates an Centers Indian tribe) opened around the us. based on the a and group session. Alan Watts and Aldous including of mystical issues is Esalen's continued exploration Huxley. drew long list of writers in the sixties. it uses free movement and sacred dances along are stripped off to intense sessions where masks with group Institute for the Har achieve a higher awareness. He claimed to have This content downloaded from 181.Camille Paglia 105 to Tibet." the "transformational" of encounter technique originated sessions that would be widely adopted in the us and serve in of the sexual the vanguard his strated dances in the us life in France. by two psychology 100 Esalen of Stanford University. es Gurdjieff's tablished in 1962 at Big Sur. Erhard investigated Scientology and stud ied Zen with Alan Watts in Sausalito. (named after at natural hot in the mountains Its headquarters. Erhard was Jewish but had been raised as an Episco palian. by Werner a used-car salesman from Philadel in in 1971 Erhard. at its Big Sur site?"Survival shown by recent conferences of (2001) and "Subtle Energies and Uncharted Bodily Death" Realms of the Mind" (2000). Its workshops. Traces est encounter of the Gurdjieff session can be found founded in San Francisco (Erhard Seminar Training).

they "to blow the Mind" in the sixties est was gener anti-Christian in philosophy. a concept directly or indi its symbolic from kundalini yoga. eight-hour they were of and harassed. In est.io6 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS gone to India to consult Sai Baba.) an American school of influenced by the German Maslow. confined Erhard way. tions. but itwas not ization. Christian fellowship Group. in 1935 by "Bill W. Gestalt psychology (which focuses on present adjustment This content downloaded from 181. for the model for today's twelve-step programs Anonymous. Satya the fervor of a Protestant the language of Asian in est's and gurus like Swami Muktananda Erhard gave the workshop format and framed itwith revival meeting meditation and Participants spiritual discovery. Group. well confession missionary public a new the under the Oxford name.183. led to the breakdown supposedly were in born after which effect ego. a private.213 on Sun. Marathon. sex or with their from addiction. behavior saccharine "Up with People" to foster wholesome from alcoholism among increasingly rebellious American in the sixties There was a confluence teens. spinal chakras. est resembled Alcoholics In its focus on public meetings. aa mem by visions of divine white and practice faith in a "Higher Power" bers still profess as as In the six outreach." and "interven for-profit organ or hippies but runaways In 1991. amid tax problems and Erhard left the country. Its students were prosperous professionals." a New Englander saved founded AA has light. with rectly borrowed vo entered the American (The latter word New the in the Age proselytizing cabulary eighties through In the early fifties." Oxford was partly inspired by the religious undertones: a it of British origins. conventional said he wanted Explicitly ally regarded as a cult. Large Group Awareness Training were moment term to "It"?Watts' for the of revela get supposed in tion. Abraham of actress Shirley Maclaine. sponsored ties. recovery glossary of drug pat terms like "enabling. of revisionist trends or manipula in psychology with "body work"?exercises tions to release "blocked" energy.15. unsavory family rumors. which sessions. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ." "co-dependency. again.

17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Rogers began his career as a theology student and Vermont pastor but afterward turned to clinical psychology. a sober book with a titillating title in the sixties. then moved Freud's theory of the social ori escape the Nazis. and probably with some justice. Austrian psychiatrist of the Gestalt school who worked and to New York in 1939 to quarreled with Freud. This content downloaded from 181. In The Function of the Orgasm that was widely (1927). with its obvious Gurdjieff lineage. books was Encounter Among Rogers' Groups (1970). Carl Rogers sought "whole psychotherapist ness" of the person. An admirer of John Dewey's progres or he pioneered "client-centered" even "non-directive" and ques therapy. Like Maslow. attack the self-actualization or human potential school of psychology on stress for its "pagan" personal needs and desires at the For many and responsibility.213 on Sun. The sixties trend to look to the body for salvation was an an of Wilhelm Reich ticipated in the writings (1892-1957). patient.Camille Paglia 107 his theory of "self-ac rather than past conflicts)." following He later advocated and behaviorism. which he felt limited He described his of enhanced consciousness. he ar available as a paperback for the biological of sexual of necessity "discharge" gued a rationale for pagan pansexu that energy?thus providing work nature Reich's recalls about Romantic passages ality. Intriguingly. which suspended to reversed the hierarchical of doctor tionably relationship sive education theories." Maslow was an early associate of Esalen but criticized its definition it for its lack of a library." a with Asian system as the "Third Force. sixties synthesis of transpersonal psychology mysticism. the first two of Freud a "Fourth Force. tute for religion. expense of moral reasoning a substi humanistic has indeed become psychology people.15. The term seems to echo Yogananda's "self-realization. developed from which the obsession with contemporary tualization. Christian conser vatives regularly. gin "orgone energy" surging through the universe and the human body." "self-esteem" evolved. Rejecting Reich of envisioned neurosis.183.

Esalen cated to Gindler Charlotte The Selver. where he died. its vital connection body. we can so to out nature's that "kick the jams.io8 CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS resem and Whitman. in 1920 in biological from Columbia University chemistry stress in of internalization and began exploring the body's the 1940s. at Mill and Selver's work. in 1963. in most methods than to New Body to like rock and its forebear. California. clogging to sixties Dionysianism is. in the 1930s.15. he was charged with fraud and sentenced to two years in prison. rhythm and blues. Another teacher at important Valley. Spirit." to release a sometimes painful brutal re and in of memories resentments. gnosticism. body work assumes not that the as body in the This content downloaded from 181. and his energy principle bles that of kundalini yoga as well as the power of the Chris in Emerson tian Holy However. Colorado. Around in the physical-culture in work of Elsa Gindler a Gindler 1910. wants work. used by actors and singers to free the voice ideas were brought to the us from tension and fear. a who earned doctorate Esalen was Ida Rolf (1896-1979). Reich had become in While still in Europe terested Berlin. box" to "orgone capture orgone energy at home. psy (1885-1961) developed and correction of based on dance movements chotherapy it resembled Chinese tai chi as well as the Alexan breathing: der technique. Reich founded an Orgone a coffin-like when he marketed Institute in 1942.183. for Structural is still dedicated Boulder. to Rolf's mission. of self-actualization The principle body work Age is closer That based Integration. Rolf combined aspects of yoga with the Alexan der to create technique of the muscles shaping The Guild "rolfing.213 on Sun. who Sensory Awareness began at teaching dedi Foundation. Gindler's by her student." freely vibrate music. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . piring soul must be freed from the opaquely material can collect and calcify but that spiritual maladies to the macrocosm. was established in 1971.

B. New Agers only take at in Esalen. sorbed by New Age over the past twenty years to the detri in of the fine arts.Camille Paglia 109 IO.213 on Sun. who claim to hear messages ering around audience members. Despite ment It lacks peals to the archaic. from dead ward.15. CONCLUSION The New nature New deserves respect for its attunement Age movement at a time when neither to nature and its search for meaning nor meaning in the humanities. ufo's. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . may In a world of ter in the face of aggression. by aliens. regularly devoted and John Ed relatives hov seers like Rosemary Altea. be disabling can to the hills and leave their rorism. Rhine's understanding. an analytic edge: with its soothing promises and feel-good a New benevolent that induces relaxation Age therapies. But too much cultural energy has been ab in the moment. and mass of neo-pagan cults and superstitions radio features call-ins seething beneath the surface. The is bleak: mainline cultural landscape religions torn failure their liberal and conservative a massive a snobbishly wings. alternately cynical naively credu a lous media. which frittered away their authority its ap their dalliance with trendy political tag lines. Science?its These developments objectivity and des postmodernism?is impugned by poststructuralism to sort out New the of needed muddle Age. perately mystical but it cannot conclusive do so without 1936 in J. exalts the broth of has Age perennial and finds beauty erhood of man. science fiction themes popularized by Swiss writer Erich Von D?ni ken's Chariot 1968 international bestseller. at in Duke experiments parapsychology This content downloaded from 181. are alarming. James Van Praagh. of the Gods monuments to extraterres attributes (which archaeological TV are to Prime-time programs trials). jars scriptures There was address present between to universities by American the spiritual cravings of the post-sixties period. New Age is fuzzily ahistorical. is valued in discourse a core It wisdom. All-night and abduction about crop-circles. or an secular intelligentsia.183. encourages contemplation.

183. literature. supported by art history from and from and to ne Age movement The religious impulse of the sixties must be rescued and redeemed. is choked with debris?with trivia. Poststructuralism far more with and complex than challenging its myopic focus on social CULTS AND COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS University. Claims for example. is to be done? Higher What education needs to be worthy of its name. activist The of the Arts Lily Yeh at the University core curriculum for global education should in be have been only erratically followed com have yet to be systematically or to bird migra animal communication (in comparative religion. The exposure to Hinduism the wreckage Buddhism that my generation had to get haphazardly contemporary standardized gotiate literature for basic and music should be formalized need education. silliness. What students their way the New Age fog is scholarly through of ancient and medieval knowledge history.213 on Sun. Study of the major world religions as as an to art. and outright falsehoods. This content downloaded from 181. which have no appara tus of testing. inca pable wave of influences a half ant New has no metaphysics and is therefore of spirituality or sublimity. The first step in any solution is a return to origins?to the primary texts of sacred and archaeology. is well As the athe key politics cluding Islam) as vast I view religions ist who worships only nature. These matters have been left to tabloids and talk shows.15. flimflam. 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . from early pa nature cults the embattled consolidation of gan through Christian religion as culture rather than theology. symbol-systems poststructuralism. There has been wave from Asian since Emerson after over the century and religion and Madame the result but Blavatsky. My proposal is the same that I have made since the course "East and West" with artist and com co-creating munity 1990. mumbo-jumbo. There is nothing supernatural or occult?only natural phenomena that science has yet to chart or explain. Teaching as morality to also gives students the intellectual freedom find the ethical principles at the heart of every religion. of telepathy pared to known tions linked to the earth's magnetism. up.

The Sixties Spiritual (1992). Grant Cumont. Counter Opposition Culture: Reflections Teodori.Willard R. Christy. ed. Inquiry A Study of Emerson. McLoughlin. An Analysis (19 51). The Cult Ted. William. Patrick. AMERICAN RELIGIOUS HISTORY Robert Bellah. Musgrove. Frank. on the Technocratic (1969). TRANSCENDENTALISM Waldo Emerson: Allen. tr. Isherwood. The Greeks Showerman and the Irrational (1905. Walter Houston. Erich. Charles Society The Making A. 1999). (1964).. (1967). of Modernity G. Intellectual (1974).15. Theodore. Ralph Manheim The Cults of the Roman Em (1955).Camille Paglia 111 BIBLIOGRAPHICAL NOTE ANCIENT MEDITERRANEAN RELIGIONS in Roman tr. The Great Mother: of the Archetype. Antonia Nevill (1989. World on Religion in a Post-Traditional N. Shoei. Thoreau. Michael J. ed. Harner. The New Age Movement: (1994).183. Faith. Gay Wilson. The Sixties Gerald.. William.. James. tr. The Greening (1970). Paul E. History MODERN CULTS Galanter.213 on Sun. Ell wood. Psychedelic Drugs to Heaven: in American Fuller. Awakenings. Ecstasy and Holiness: Counterculture and the Open (1974). Christopher. in America. Trask for Modern A Study Man in Hu Cults: Mark. Robert C. Society and Its Youthful ed. Zen (1981). Hallucinogens (1973).. Healing Go! Children and Coercion (1976). man Nature (1902).. tr. (1932). Godmen A Study Shamanism: of India (1972). tr. Harold. Andrew J. ed. Bloom. Religion: of the Post-Christian Nation Robert S.. Stairways Drugs Religious History and Shamanism (2000). (1974). Experience DRUGS The Private Sea: LSD and the Search for God Braden. and introd. Reich. American to Postmodern Awakening: Religion Moving from Modern The Celebration Paul. ed. Beyond Belief: Essays The American The Emergence (1970).... Heelas. Pavlos. The New Left: A Documentary (1969). Clark. Re and Reform: An Essay on Religion and Social Change vivals. Techniques of Ecstasy. 1996).. in the Evolution Archaic Bucke. (1989. American Tran An 1830-1860: in American Transcendentalism: (1970). R. Consciousness: ade. Mircea. pire.. Ando. Richard of the Human Cosmic Maurice. E. 1956). Chemical and Religion Ecstasy: (1969). rev. TWENTIETH-CENTURY CULTURAL HISTORY Heiter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders Vincent. Neumann. Let Our (1982). Massimo. Turcan. Howard. Franz. of America of a Bugliosi. Robert. Peter. Roszak. Eli tr. Dodds. The Oriental Religions Paganism. Vedanta of Religious Experience: This content downloaded from 181.. of the Self and the Sacralization William (1996). 17 Nov 2013 11:56:15 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Varieties (19 51). and American Transcendentalism scendentalism The Orient and Alcott A Biography Boiler.. Mind (1901). Arthur. MISCELLANEOUS Brent. (1982). 160J-19JJ (1978).