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The Doors of Perception

The Doors of Perception is a book by Aldous Huxley detailing his hallucinatory experiences when taking mescaline. The title comes from a quote from William Blake:
"If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infinite."

Based on this quotation, Huxley assumes that the human brain filters reality in order not to let pass all impressions and images, which would be unbearable to process. According to his view, drugs can reduce this filter, or "open these doors of perception", as he puts it metaphorically. In order to verify his theory, Huxley takes mescaline and writes down his thoughts and feelings. What he notices is that everyday objects lose their functionality and suddenly exist "as such". Space and dimension become irrelevant and the perception seems to be enlarged, overwhelming and at times even offending because the person is unable to cope with the enormous amount of impressions.

Huxley's book inspired the young Jim Morrison to name his rock and roll band The Doors.

External link

  • Text of The Doors of Perception (http://www.psychedelic-library.org/doors.htm) in HTML format.
    • Note: The Doors of Perception appears under the "Fair Use" rulings regarding the 1976 Copyright Act for NON-profit academic, research, and general information purposes. Readers requiring a permanent copy of The Doors of Perception for their library are advised to purchase it from their book supplier.

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