At the time when I picked the name The Door Of Perception I didn’t know much about Aldous Huxley and his teachings — because that’s what his writings are, rather than novels. Especially his final book Island (which you can read in PDF here) is a sociological blueprint, a manual for living, loving and dying. His legacy so to speak, leaving us his vision of paradise within reach. It’s a powerful inspiration to live a life devoted to strive for ones highest potential as a human being.
And it is this focus on the development of the ‘human potentialities’ that made Huxley’s ideas function as the mission statement of the Human Potential Movement and early Esalen. All that we need to realize, is our true potential built into the very organic structure of our brains, he believed. It just takes a little push, a nudge, to turn the valve off and let in the unmediated flow of absolute reality.
Below is a recording of Alan Watts talking to Laura Huxley, his second wife. Laura came to play a significant role after her husband’s death in a countercultural movement largely dominated by men. When cancer brought Aldous to his death bed, he asked Laura to inject him with “LSD, 100 µg, intramuscular.” He died later that day, after two doses, in the most peaceful way. So after creating radical forms of living, Huxley himself demonstrated a radical way of dying.
Laura’s report of Aldous’ last day is available to read here.
A conversation between Alan Watts and Laura Huxley, 1968