Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Head Trip: Adventures on the Wheel of Consciousness” as Want to Read:
The Head Trip: Adventures on the Wheel of Consciousness
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Head Trip: Adventures on the Wheel of Consciousness

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  467 Ratings  ·  68 Reviews
A world at once familiar and unimaginably strange exists all around us–and within us. It is the world of consciousness, a protean mental landscape that each of us knows intimately in bits and pieces yet understands in its totality scarcely at all. Tied to the body and the brain, consciousness is nonetheless beyond our ability to measure or quantify. Despite the attempts of ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published December 4th 2007 by Random House (first published January 1st 2007)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Head Trip, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Head Trip

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Shani
May 14, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: body-mind
I am fascinated by the various states of consciousness which Warren nicely describes in his book, and wanted very much to be an agreeable travel partner on his adventures into such realms as the hypnagogic (and all the other cycles through which we sleep), lucid dreaming, hypnotic trance, SMR training, and the PCE (pure conscious event, which is a rarified form of enlightenment attainable by certain masters after years of meditation).

However after a couple hundred pages I found myself feeling i
...more
Jakub
Apr 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An absolutely fascinating account of the lived experience of consciousness as told through a mix of popular science and accounts of self-experimentation. I’ve started this book a couple of times, but until now something always got in the way of me finishing it.

Warren goes through the “wheel” of both sleeping and waking life, with various stages like REM sleep, The Watch, the Zone, and daydreaming. At almost every stage, which is to say within every chapter, there was something that I recognized
...more
Jason
Jun 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Heads of all stripes
This book is wonderful from so many different angles that it almost boggles my mind (like, wow, man):

—the author's Gen X sensibility and sense of humor;

—his lovely illustrations, charts, and diagrams;

—his choice of the "altered states" of consciousness to explore here, most of which the "normal" human being experiences on a regular basis, and without ingesting anything: parasomnias, hypnagogia, slow-wave sleep, "the Watch," REM dreams, lucid dreams, hypnopompia, trances, daydreams, SMR (se
...more
Goran
Jul 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The taxonomy, psychology and physiology of different states of consciousness is for me fascinating subject matter, and I feel that Warren did a great job here.

He flawlessly combines his own personal experience, seasoned with amusing anecdotes and peaks into his introspective processes (and he's a funny guy), gonzo-stlye interviews with top researchers in the field and descriptions of participation in experiments. If Warren's quest to understand consciousness through personal experience of diffe
...more
Psuke
Oct 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book.

Head Trip is the story of the author's reseraches into "consciousness" and his discovery that there are more modes of "consciousness" than he was aware before beginning this foray, and it's much more plastic, too.

There were a few places in the chapters on dreaming when the scientists quoted annoy me by speaking as though "dreaming" were *one thing* with *one purpose*, for the most part I appreciated the open-minded tone of tge author, and that - at lwast in the early-mid 2000'
...more
 Aesha
Oct 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Although I do not agree with the topics arrangement's concept and all the details the author came with it under those topics, But I really did like the book's concept in general. On the other hands, Is there anyone figured out some conflicts in some ideas? I mean, without a special specialization in any field in general, as a simple reader, do anyone figured out some conflicts as I did?
Tim
Sep 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Highly readable blend of personal anecdotes and the latest experimental research and speculation. If you have an interest in the nebulous field of human consciousness, you'll probably enjoy this book.
Carlos
This book was a jumble of neurological research findings, personal journey entries and metaphysical speculation. While there is plenty of interesting research findings in the book there is also an unfortunately significant amount of space devoted to personal journal-like entries by the author. These can occasionally serve to flesh out the subjective take for the reader but are more often distracting when the author is not capable of, or interested in, entering the said state, like in the chapter ...more
Jon Bash
Apr 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not perfect by any means, but an incredibly unique book that reveals a lot of insight about the mind from a primarily first-person perspective, with a healthy dose of neuroscience thrown in as well. Jeff isn't afraid to get a bit esoteric and even mystical, but is also careful to qualify things when necessary. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
iitu
May 31, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
At some points I was seriously uninterested and thus not enjoying. The conclusion chapter made a lot of sense.
Steve
Oct 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
A fun book, I liked the writing a lot. Sort of a travelogue of various states of consciousness, along with the author’s personal experiences trying them out and talking to scientists and experts.
Mad Dog
Feb 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all
I love this book. It works wonderfully on many levels. There is lots of good information about the mind and the brain. It becomes very personal as the author goes into (or at least attempts to) all of the states of consciousness in the book. It is inspirational as one learns what the mind and brain are capable of. Also, I was continually inspired by the process of the author's writing of this book. The author(Warren) worked so very hard and long on this book, and this process became for me part ...more
Michael
Jul 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Wow! Jeff Warren's restless intellect takes you on

a journey through the known (non drug induced) states of consciousness that is truly mind expanding. Quoting research and interviewing internatonal experts in the emrerging field of consciousness studies, Warren's treatise is at once fascinating, mind boggling and suprosongly hilarious as he includes his own experiences and anecdotes while he takes us through his journey of writing this book. Warren's style is refreshing and lucid. His use of di
...more
Brom Kim
Oct 16, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: mind
Personally and societally, I, we have strayed away from introspection in the last few years. This is probably a side-effect of our nation at war, and its self pity and xenophobia. We focus on 'practicalities' like who we should be killing, and who wants to kill us.

In this fear mongering climate we forget to ask important questions like "why do folks want to kill us?" Introspection is not impractical. At the very least, Sun Tzu said, "Know thyself, know thy enemy" At best, perhaps some of our cur
...more
Britt
Oct 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book was fascinating to me as someone who is interested in mindfulness and observing how the mind works. This is less of a science book and more a first-hand account of Warren's adventures in studying his own brain: getting hooked up to all kinds of equipment (no fMRI, though, sad!), having his brain examined from all kinds of angles, experimenting with different states of consciousness in various controlled (and uncontrolled) settings, and interviewing top thinkers in neuroscience and psyc ...more
Dmitiry
Nov 15, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: brain
Well, it's my first review on goodreads. And the last book which I get from my read list is Head Trip. I choose it on the behalf of God of randomness :) I rate it as 4/5.
After couple of days after reading I could remember only some facts - about catching the moment when I fell to sleep, Salvador Dali or Albert Einstein (I don't remember) uses a spoon in their hand, to wake up immediately after left away in the result of noise falling spoon made on metal object.
Lucid dreaming - every time I focu
...more
Karunagrace
Mar 25, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fascinating tour of the many states of consciousness the brain is capable of, in all their subtle variations. It is written in a light, personable style and marketed toward a popular audience, but the guy has definitely done his homework. He combines the latest scientific experiments with perspectives from spiritual groups, then does personal experiments (lucid dreaming, etc.) and reports on the results. He does not pretend to offer any deep insights of his own, but he is thorough and ...more
Stephen Collins
Jun 03, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Recommended to Stephen by: New Scientist magazine
Before reading this, stand up and flip the light switch on and off. If it works, then you're probably not dreaming...
I probably enjoy non-fiction reading more than most, but this is a book a will recommend to just about anyone. Jeff Warren sets out to experience and describe the various states of consciousness - REM sleep, meditation, the SMR, the Watch, and eight others. In addition to outlining the research already done into each state, interviewing experts, and describing the physiological co
...more
David
Apr 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Head Trip is something like gonzo popular science. It's a personal look at the wide and mostly uncharted world of consciousness. There's a lot to ingest so it's a good thing Jeff Warren is a likeable guy (he's Canadian - the world's most affable creatures).

Each of the chapters deal with a different state of consciousness, such as REM sleep or being in 'the zone'. First Jeff will explain the scientific background for each of the states, then he'll give it a spin himself. The book never gets b
...more
Tom Otvos
Sep 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Head Trip" was an awesome book, if you are interested in that sort of thing. Jeff has a really easy-going style, which makes a potentially deep topic very easy to read. And the content was really fascinating, taking you through the current research (although not *really* current as the book is a few years old now) on the body's states of consciousness throughout the day. And no, it is not simply "awake vs. asleep".

I first heard Jeff on a CBC radio show that talked about sleeping and dreaming ca
...more
Alexis
Jan 14, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
I had limited time with this book and had to speed through it. It's a study of the different states of consciousness- both awake and asleep. The author does a lot of experiments, and conducts interviews with experts. He also goes to lucid dream camp and on a meditation retreat.

The lucid dream section read like something out of Inception. I found some parts of this book really interesting, as I've always been interested in consciousness. The author tries to make things light, but it's still a pr
...more
Kevin Conlon
Mar 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent book that takes what is potentially a very complicated subject matter and makes it accessible to all. The insights into the different stages of consciousness are illuminating and it manages to change one's perceptions of consciousness as a simple case of waking and sleeping and allows one to realise the many different strands that make up consciousness. The author's enthusiasm for the subject matter shines through at all times, and the approach which he took to research his book is ...more
Elaine Nelson
Date read is a wild guess...I happened to remember this book after someone tweeted about first sleep/second sleep, then posted an Ask MetaFilter question because I couldn't remember the name! http://ask.metafilter.com/208842/Look...

I do remember that I enjoyed it, and little bits of what I learned from it still filter into my head from time to time. (Ergo first/second sleep, which is something I learned about in that book. Very common before industrialization, people falling asleep at dark, waki
...more
Miranda
Jan 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone with a brain
I really can't adequately explain how great this book is. I stongly encourage any current owner of a brain to get thineself to a bookstore or library and pick up a copy to read, posthaste. The author describes, in a humorous and for the most part easy-to-read manner the many varied states of consciousness from sleeping to waking. I had my first lucid dream after reading the chapter on lucid dreaming - so totally awesome. I haven't yet finished reading it, but it has gotten to the point now where ...more
Kevin
Nov 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: psychonauts, experience junkies, day dreamers
Head Trip reads like a neurological/psychological travelogue. The author is a literature graduate turned science journalist and has a self-deprecating and friendly way of introducing us to current research into consciousness with personal stories of his visits with various researchers. Probably not for anyone who wants deep research, dipping into various states of mind as it does, but there's plenty of suggestions for further reading. It made me want to pay more attention to my hypnagogic vision ...more
Lindsay
Jul 10, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-mind
The writer uses a lot of repetition of some words (f.e: Needless to say -), very long footnotes and it feels like he's distracted about the subjects very easy (for example in the middle of his own story he starts talking about a research and 2 pages later he continues with his own story), yet a very interesting book to read. Even if you are not new to stuff about consciousness you will still learn something from this book. I wanted to give it a 3.5 but that's not possible, so I'm gonna give it a ...more
Travis McKinstry
Dec 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great, great book. The author was extremely through on the study of consciousness from (what seemed like) the beginning of time to now.

If you want to learn more about consciousness, read this. If you're looking for an interesting read on the brain, read this. If you're looking to get your mind blown, read this. If you like facts, read this. If you like to try new things that can alter your brain legally and in a healthy way, read this.
Jazzmin Hunter
Often rambling in a way that both entertains and gives plenty to think about. While the author discussed various states of consciousness, I found it difficult to pay attention because the things he was saying would cause my mind to go spinning off on journeys of its own.

Many topics are covered in depth without too much rehashing of the same old group of worn out experiments that other psychology based books are filled with.
John Martindale
Interesting subject, but I did not really care all that much for the book. It did not help that Jeff mentioned his inspiration was a book called "Mind wide open" Which I really did not care for. It kinda of got me off to a bad start. The book covers different stages of consciousness, the "watch", lucid dreaming, meditation, trance, day dreaming and other states, from his atheistic perspective. Towards the end of the book he gushes over Buddhism for quite awhile, it got old
Kevin
Apr 25, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I'm more of a fiction guy, so I'm taking my time reading this, but it's fascinating. The author is very engaging and keeps it personal, interesting, and yet still scientific. I've been a chronic sufferer of sleep paralysis since my teens, so I'm particularly interested in the sections on lucid dreaming, and the hypnagogic and hypnopompic states.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Coming to Our Senses: Body and Spirit in the Hidden History of the West
  • The Spectrum of Consciousness
  • Advanced Lucid Dreaming: The Power of Supplements
  • Right Where You Are Sitting Now
  • Out of Your Mind
  • Clean: A History of Personal Hygiene and Purity
  • The Prism and the Pendulum: The Ten Most Beautiful Experiments in Science
  • Living Deeply: The Art  Science of Transformation in Everyday Life
  • Think Smart: A Neuroscientist's Prescription for Improving Your Brain's Performance
  • Lucid Dreaming: Gateway to the Inner Self
  • Ten Stupid Things Men Do to Mess Up Their Lives
  • The Marathon Monks of Mount Hiei
  • Authors of the Impossible: The Paranormal and the Sacred
  • Mind Tools: The Five Levels of Mathematical Reality
  • War and Peace in the Global Village
  • The Divine Madman: The Sublime Life and Songs of Drukpa Kunley
  • The Extroverted Writer: An Author's Guide to Marketing and Building a Platform
  • Jung the Mystic: The Esoteric Dimensions of Carl Jung's Life & Teachings

Nonfiction Deals

  • Masters of the Air: America's Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany
    $15.99 $3.99
  • The Monster of Florence
    $10.99 $2.99
  • The Westies: Inside New York's Irish Mob
    $9.99 $1.99
  • April 1865 (P.S.)
    $11.74 $1.99
  • Jesus Is ______: Find a New Way to Be Human
    $7.99 $0.99
  • Scent of the Missing: Love and Partnership with a Search-and-Rescue Dog
    $17.99 $1.99
  • Lab 257
    $8.74 $1.99
  • How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Girl in the Woods: A Memoir
    $11.99 $1.99
  • The Power of When: Discover Your Chronotype--and the Best Time to Eat Lunch, Ask for a Raise, Have Sex, Write a Novel, Take Your Meds, and More
    $14.99 $2.99
  • The Last Lecture
    $10.99 $2.99
  • Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived
    $12.74 $1.99
  • Not Tonight, Honey: Wait 'Til I'm A Size 6
    $10.99 $1.99
  • Dog Years
    $13.74 $1.99
  • The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter--And How to Make the Most of Them Now
    $11.99 $2.99
  • Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Ladies of Liberty: The Women Who Shaped Our Nation
    $5.99 $1.99
  • The Ends of the World: Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and Our Quest to Understand Earth's Past Mass Extinctions
    $12.99 $1.99
  • Feast: True Love in and out of the Kitchen
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Last of the Doughboys: The Forgotten Generation and Their Forgotten World War
    $15.99 $1.99
  • Vaccinated: One Man's Quest to Defeat the World's Deadliest Diseases
    $10.99 $1.99
  • Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology
    $12.99 $2.99
  • An Appetite For Wonder: The Making Of A Scientist
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Letters of Note: An Eclectic Collection of Correspondence Deserving of a Wider Audience
    $27.99 $2.99
  • Waiter Rant: Thanks for the Tip-Confessions of a Cynical Waiter
    $8.74 $1.99
  • Sex Object
    $9.74 $2.99
  • Dakota: A Spiritual Geography (Dakotas)
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Restless: Because You Were Made for More
    $7.49 $1.99
  • Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M.: Audrey Hepburn, Breakfast at Tiffany's, and The Dawn of the Modern Woman
    $10.24 $1.99
  • The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions
    $16.99 $2.99
  • Happiness: The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After
    $13.99 $3.99
  • Man-Eater: The Life and Legend of an American Cannibal
    $5.99 $2.99
  • Pukka: The Pup After Merle
    $17.99 $1.99
  • The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Arctic Dreams
    $17.99 $1.99
  • Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors
    $19.99 $1.99
  • Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No to Take Control of Your Life
    $10.99 $2.99
  • Buddhist Boot Camp
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Flour: A Baker's Collection of Spectacular Recipes
    $21.99 $3.99
  • The Longest Day: The Classic Epic of D-Day
    $12.99 $3.99
  • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
    $5.99 $1.99
  • Lost in the Cosmos: The Last Self-Help Book
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Moving Beyond Words: Essays on Age, Rage, Sex, Power, Money, Muscles: Breaking the Boundaries of Gender
    $17.99 $1.99
  • Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet
    $5.99 $1.99
  • Do the Work
    $4.99 $1.49
  • The Lost Tribe of Coney Island: Headhunters, Luna Park, and the Man Who Pulled Off the Spectacle of the Century
    $4.99 $1.99
  • I Suck at Girls
    $10.74 $1.99
  • The Beauty Myth: How Images of Beauty Are Used Against Women
    $14.99 $2.99
  • A Mind of Your Own: The Truth About Depression and How Women Can Heal Their Bodies to Reclaim Their Lives
    $18.99 $1.99
  • Band of Brothers: E Company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne from Normandy to Hitler's Eagle's Nest
    $12.99 $3.99
  • Peace Is Every Breath: A Practice for Our Busy Lives
    $9.49 $1.99
  • Savage Harvest: A Tale of Cannibals, Colonialism, and Michael Rockefeller's Tragic Quest for Primitive Art
    $14.99 $1.99
  • Londoners: The Days and Nights of London Now--As Told by Those Who Love It, Hate It, Live It, Left It, and Long for It
    $7.24 $1.99
  • The World's Last Night: And Other Essays
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Tracks: One Woman's Journey Across 1,700 Miles of Australian Outback
    $17.99 $1.99
  • Daring to Drive: A Saudi Woman's Awakening
    $13.99 $1.99
  • Hell's Princess: The Mystery of Belle Gunness, Butcher of Men
    $5.99 $2.99
  • Life
    $11.99 $2.99
  • Seeing Further: The Story of Science and the Royal Society
    $13.24 $2.99
  • Grace, Not Perfection (with Bonus Content): Celebrating Simplicity, Embracing Joy
    $8.99 $1.99
  • The Promise and the Dream: The Untold Story of Martin Luther King, Jr. And Robert F. Kennedy
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Through the Eyes of a Lion: Facing Impossible Pain, Finding Incredible Power
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Why We Run: A Natural History
    $9.49 $1.99
  • Edgar Allan Poe: The Fever Called Living
    $5.99 $2.99
  • The Road to Jonestown: Jim Jones and Peoples Temple
    $12.99 $2.99
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »