Be Here Now
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Be Here Now

4.25 of 5 stars 4.25  ·  rating details  ·  11,773 ratings  ·  424 reviews
The enhanced edition of Be Here Now includes: Two guided video meditations, 30 minutes in length * Twenty minute video retrospective of Ram Dass' spiritual journey *The first chapter of Ram Dass' new book, Be Love Now
ebook, enhanced, 100 pages
Published November 2nd 2010 by HarperCollins (first published 1971)
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May 29, 2008 Katie rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: I feel like I'm supposed to say, "The book will find YOU"
So there was this this guy I went to high school with, Michael, and he fancied himself a gangster. He wore his flannels buttoned all the way up, put sad-faced airbrushed clown stickers all over his books, and, though not Mexican, developed a Mexican accent. Then he dropped out of school, grew dreads adorned with seashells, and joined some cult out in the mountains by Neverland Ranch. He now considered himself a guru and also, in a past life, a bird . He was very committed to not wearing shoes or...more
This book helped me a lot. It was one of many that my husband brought home from work and left around the house so someone would find it at just the right time. I'd flipped through it and thought it was just a collection of philosophical sayings in the form of trippy graphics (which it is, mostly.) I noticed a copy at Ashanti's house, which impressed me, but not enough to actually start reading it.

One night I was tripping for the last time with my best friend who was about to move to another stat...more
Ram Dass takes the wisdom of the East, and wraps it in a package a Westerner can open. This book had a profound effect on me at a time when I was at a spiritual crossroads... well, maybe the beginning of my spiritual road is more accurate.

I was an atheist until about 21. Then I had my gnosis, or series of events that brought me into a direct experience with something larger than me. Call it what you want, the divine plan, the ground of being, the true self, insanity, a hallucination... all of t...more
I first read this book at 20 years old when I was just barely beginning to realize that my beliefs might be different from those of my parents. So, alas, my review of this book is purely personal in nature. However, I believe this is how Ram Dass would expect his book to be reviewed.

Reading "Be Here Now" could only be likened to having the top of my heart ripped out of my chest and shown to me. I felt as though it contained all the beliefs, fears, and questions that I had kept secret for so long...more
I love this book. You can dismiss it if you want as ex-hippie/druggie New Age blather, but the fact is, this book has some serious wisdom. So get over the stigma and read this book for what it has to say, not the movement you think it represents.

The central message of this book resonates powerfully with me. How many of us spend inordinate amounts of time in the past or the future? How much of our day is spent wishing we were somewhere else, doing something else? How many of us live with the ass...more
Erik Graff
Feb 12, 2013 Erik Graff rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Erik by: peers
Shelves: biography
With drugs, particularly pharmaceuticals, being so regularly abused in our culture, it is a salutary exercise to reconsider the sixties, when some psychoactive drugs, used considerately and independently of profit-driven corporations, turned millions towards the serious study of psychology, philosophy and religion. Richard Alpert and Timothy Leary were two prominent examples of this existential turn.

Of the two erstwhile Harvard academics, Alpert's is the happier story, Alpert the wiser man. This...more
One might say, written by a hippie for a hippie. But hippie or not one will not find the true value of this book without being on a certain stage of a certain journey. The distinction that makes them the same is perhaps that the hippie will mindlessly accept and the anti-hippie will mindlessly dismiss. While those who have partaken of that little drop of poison known as acid, likely know an experience more profound than any combination of books can provide them, and will see the value in heeding...more
Jun 17, 2008 Maureen rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cool people
Recommended to Maureen by: Maher Baba
There is something about a square book (the shape, not the content, man), printed on paper that is almost as thick as construction paper, with the wackiest insides EVER. And, yes, while we are treated to an overview of Ram Dass' life, and given a primer for becoming practicing Hindus, it is the part in the middle with the mind-melding/melting pen and ink drawings accompanied by words on a page like, "You're standing on a bridge watching yourself go by," that make this book such a trip. Literally...more
It wouldn't be fair to open this book holding on to any preconceived notions about some "hippie counterculture", you might miss the message. You must be able to accept that a book can be square in shape and that the story can be delivered as art and not only straight lines of text. And to push you just a bit further, you must be comfortable reading most of the book "sideways", not like a "regular" book.. Some of those very things are what I love about Be Here Now, to read it you must truly Be He...more
This book is was perhaps the beginning of my interest in the eastern/mystical thought where I began to take meditation and Buddhist thought as less an academic study and more of an integration to my action and my belief. This book, like some others I shall review, possess not only the opinions, thought and methodology of one man, but takes the tradition of many religions and 'revealed truths' and quotes them here. I think it is perhaps necessary to the western mind to see that the perceived cont...more
Richard Sutton
A Roadmap to Where You Are.

in 1970, I was trying to figure out who I was. I'd left college, manned the barricades for a while, then built a cabin on a commune. Filled with anxiety about my place in the scary world of the day, I just didn't know what I should do, until a very kind yogi mentioned I should read this book. I read it. I spent weeks thinking about it, and it changed my life. Be Here Now is the erstwhile story of Drs. Timothy Leary and Richard Alperrt's struggle to take meaning from th...more
Brian Erland
Goodbye Dr. Richard Alpert, Harvard Psychology professor. Hello Baba Ram Dass, Hindu spiritual seeker and devotee of the great monkey-God Hanuman!

'Be Here Now' was a phenomenon born out of the sixties counter culture movement and became "the book" that turned the spiritual consciousness of the Christian West eastwards, thus altering the metaphysical landscape forever. Not only were the ideas within this 416 page softcover book made of recycled materials a shock to the religious nervous system o...more

I am not finished yet but I wanted to go ahead and write this review because I already know that this here is a great book. The answers are all in there man and there are pictures too. It is really a work of art, this book. Be here now contains so much wisdom sweetened and condensed so as to help it reach right down into your soul. Will having had experience with psychedelics help you to understand this book? Perhaps, but I swear there is so much Truth in it that you wouldn't even need to be ab...more
This is powerful stuff. Be careful with this one. Also, drugs are bad please keep that in mind at all times. Gave it a three star, but in all honesty I hated and loved this book equally, though at different times. At first, I loved it. As it impacted my life, I slowly developed a feel for it that turned into a plain outright "I deeply wish I had never read this" That said, for me this book was profound and ground breaking, and certainly left its mark on me. (Big like the crater formed from an as...more
In India and en route to an ashram, I was looking for a spiritual read to complement the trip. I heard this book led Steve Jobs on a similar journey, so gave it a whirl... It took me inside the mind of a drugged up hippy (albeit an intellectual one), and a counterculture that influenced much of my music collection.

The 108 illustrated pages make it as much a work of art as a book, and add substance to the overall message (the original is printed on slightly oversized square recycled paper). It d...more
I really appreciate the concept of living in the now. I truely believe that if we can find happiness now, our life will not be filled with regret. I did feel like the book was very disjointed, and that the message would have probablly have been better portrayed if the author had not done quite so much LSD on the path to spiritual enlightenment, but nonethelass, the message is a good one. The illustrations are beautiful in a very trippy way. Overall, I am glad to have read the book.
Harvard University professor turns yogi after taking multiple doses of LSD and mushrooms. This book, supposedly, determined Steve Jobs go to Asia. The first part of the book tells us about his journey. The second part is full of hand-written aphorisms and sketches. The final part presents a step-by-step guide to enlightenment.

The book raises multiple questions: 1) the issue of drugs and psychedelics, 2) professors are not always skeptical and purely rational 3) one can radically change his life...more
Remember, Be Here Now is a book I had been meaning to read for years. I downloaded it on my Kindle and read it on the plane to India. It is somewhat dated and has to be read with the spirit of the 60's in mind but the message in this book is timeless. Ram Dass went the whole mile, from Richard Alpert, professor, to Ram Dass, American contemporary spiritual teacher.

The first part of the book is Ram Dass's journey through the three stages of his life - the science, the LSD and finally, the yogi. T...more
Kailash Bruder
I bought this book in 1972 (at age 11) to read in secret, then return to the bookstore some days later, for fear of discovery by my fundamentalist Christian father. I was seduced by the woodblock print on grocery-bag colored paper middle section. It left an indelible impression on me--one that would germinate 30 years later in my face-to-face encounter with Bhagavan Das, a much younger version of whom I first encountered in its pages.
No other book has done more to support the healthy cross-polle...more
I'm not comfortable rating this. From somewhere behind that all-too-familiar burnt-out hippie lingo shines moments of verisimilitude, and as much as I'd like to curl a rational upper lip and scoff, a deeply irrational part of me would be disappointed if I did so. I'll say this: it is at times compelling, and at others tedious. But as far as how many "stars" I can give it? That would be missing the point altogether.
Very spiritually deep book, no review can do it justice. Must-read for anyone on the path of self-discovery and enlightenment
Alanna Gabin
i read over and over and am always reminded of how wonderful it is to be here NOW.
This book was a huge turning point for me. Opened my eyes to a whole new world. Love it.
Po Po
The concept of the Eternal Present is intriguing.. No yesterday, no tomorrow, there is only now.

"Here we are
Here & Now
That's all there is
And if it isn't beautiful, man
There's nothing."

* * *

"Do you surf through it all? Or do you carry it around like a load?"

* * *

"Desire is a trap.
Desire-less ness is moksha (liberation).
Desire is the creator.
Desire is the destroyer.
Desire is the universe."

* * *

I like the whimsical nature of this book. The artwork and the swirly text and the way that I have to...more
Charity Finnestad
When you are ready to expand your mind, pick this up...
Ginny Pennekamp
I went through a profound experience all of the last year. One that I didn't necessarily ask for or welcome, but one that changed every single fiber of my being -- mentally, physically and spiritually. The best way to describe it is probably in terms of my own sadhana. I didn't go looking for this journey. It found me when I needed it; when I was ready. Like everyone else, I spent a good deal of this summer reading about Steve Jobs and George Harrison and they both held this book in their hearts...more
D.S. West
What a doozy of a book! I found it totally by accident. I had no idea it was by Alpert, or rather Baba Ram Dass, colleague of one Timothy Leary whose book Change Your Brain I'd just read months earlier.

This is a one-of-a-kind "trip." No, strip back those quotations marks, they dull the effect. This book IS a textual trip. I've never seen another like it. Ram Dass writes a tasty and linear account of his transition from successful doctor Richard Alpert to spiritual explorer Ram Dass. The middle s...more
Joseph Dunn
This is THE book that turned on an entire generation to eastern philosophy. Ram Das, originally named Richard Alphert, taught with Timothy Leary at Harvard in the 1950's. Together they experimented with psychedelics such as LSD and conducted clinical studies with students. As the LSD controversy swelled, both Alphert and Leary were fired from their positions. At this point, Alphert left for India in search of someone who could teach him to attain these about these higher states of awareness with...more
Richard Alpert seems to have found where he needed to be. I can sense the joy spilling out. Good for him. It's an interesting account of how he found his way there (or He talks of his journey and what aided him and ways which will help the reader. It seems enthusiasm was one of the driving forces for this book, which oftentimes can be contagious. Though I got the impression it was a premature enthusiasm. Think of a teenager falling in love for the first time and writing a book about...more
Marie Mattei
This is a good way to start for every soul seeking enlightenment. How can we comprehend the essence of pure existence in an Infinite Universe, and the eternal magnificence we carry within, wrapped in ephemeral matter? How to find balance between an inner divinity, and the chaotic outer world? Try this book if you want to know some more about these subjects.
Baba Ram Dass is such a bright light in the path of spiritual matters. I personally found his writing touching and inspiring, and the illust...more
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  • Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism
  • The Book on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are
  • The Yoga Sutras
  • The Psychedelic Experience: A Manual Based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead
  • I Am That: Talks with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
  • Being Peace
  • The Wisdom of No Escape: How to Love Yourself and Your World
  • Autobiography of a Yogi
  • After the Ecstasy, the Laundry: How the Heart Grows Wise on the Spiritual Path
  • The Dhammapada
  • The Way of the Bodhisattva: A Translation of the Bodhicharyavatara
  • A Separate Reality
  • The Three Pillars of Zen
  • The I Ching or Book of Changes
  • The Heart of Yoga: Developing a Personal Practice
  • Cosmic Consciousness - A Study in the Evolution of the Human Mind
  • Open to Desire: Embracing a Lust for Life - Insights from Buddhism and Psychotherapy
  • Wheels of Life: A User's Guide to the Chakra System
Ram Dass (Richard Alpert), one of America's most beloved spiritual figures, has made his mark on the world giving teachings and promoting loving service, harmonious business practices, and conscious care for the dying. His spirit has been a guiding light for four generations, carrying millions along on the journey, helping free them from their bonds as he has worked his way through his own. He mak...more
More about Ram Dass...
Journey of Awakening: A Meditator's Guidebook The Only Dance There Is Still Here: Embracing Aging, Changing and Dying How Can I Help? Stories and Reflection on Service Be Love Now

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“Be here now.” 136 likes
“If you think you're free, there's no escape possible.” 66 likes
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