THE PSYCHEDELIC TEACHER: Drugs, Mysticism, and Schools by Ignacio L. Gotz

THE PSYCHEDELIC TEACHER: Drugs, Mysticism, and Schools

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Drugs, notably hallucinogens, can be used legitimately and indeed magnificently, Gotz believes; but ""psychedelic teachers"" could turn the public schools into places of religious enlightenment, making drugs unnecessary. However, since Gotz doesn't press his second proposition in any purposeful way, it is advocacy of drug use which dominates the book. Drugs are symptomatic of a search for meaning; the psychedelic experience is at best a mystical one, valuable in itself, relieving the overemphasis on ""the conceptual and the technical"" which afflicts young people. Gotz cautions that tripping should not induce inertia but ""ought to be a blueprint for action."" But even if one grants that drugs might provide ""a change of life,"" how does he know that the ""purpose and action"" will be valid? Does it matter which purposes? How can we evaluate them? To say that drugs open new areas of human experience is one thing; that they achieve ""wholeness of life"" quite another. And the way in which this book slides from the first to the second makes it -- for all its serious, open-minded and civilized tone -- a sponsor of panaceas. Gotz is so vague about the content of the transcendental consciousness and the direction of the renewed life that this merely provides a leather binding for the kind of dimestore mysticism he himself would probably deplore.

Pub Date: April 17th, 1972
Publisher: Westminster