Aldous Huxley Quotes

Quotes tagged as "aldous-huxley" Showing 1-30 of 50
Neil Postman
“We were keeping our eye on 1984. When the year came and the prophecy didn't, thoughtful Americans sang softly in praise of themselves. The roots of liberal democracy had held. Wherever else the terror had happened, we, at least, had not been visited by Orwellian nightmares.

But we had forgotten that alongside Orwell's dark vision, there was another - slightly older, slightly less well known, equally chilling: Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. Contrary to common belief even among the educated, Huxley and Orwell did not prophesy the same thing. Orwell warns that we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression. But in Huxley's vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history. As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.

What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny "failed to take into account man's almost infinite appetite for distractions." In 1984, Orwell added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we fear will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we desire will ruin us.

This book is about the possibility that Huxley, not Orwell, was right.”
Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business

Aldous Huxley
“And that," put in the Director sententiously, "that is the secret of happiness and virtue — liking what you've got to do. All conditioning aims at that: making people like their unescapable social destiny.”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Aldous Huxley
“Did you ever feel, as though you had something inside you that was only waiting for you to give it a chance to come out? Some sort of extra power that you aren't using - you know, like all the water that goes down the falls instead of through the turbines?”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Aldous Huxley
“Back to culture. Yes, actually to culture. You can’t consume much if you sit still and read books.”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Aldous Huxley
“That we are not much sicker and much madder than we are is due exclusively to that most blessed and blessing of all natural graces, sleep.”
Aldous Huxley

Neil Postman
“What Huxley teaches is that in the age of advanced technology, spiritual devastation is more likely to come from an enemy with a smiling face than from one whose countenance exudes suspicion and hate. In the Huxleyan prophecy, Big Brother does not watch us, by his choice. We watch him, by ours. There is no need for wardens or gates or Ministries of Truth. When a population becomes distracted by trivia, when cultural life is redefined as a perpetual round of entertainments, when serious public conversation becomes a form of baby-talk, when, in short, a people become an audience and their public business a vaudeville act, then a nation finds itself at risk; a culture-death is a clear possibility.”
Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business

Aldous Huxley
“Thought must be divided against itself before it can come to any knowledge of itself.”
Aldous Huxley

Albert Hofmann
“I know LSD; I don't need to take it anymore. Maybe when I die, like Aldous Huxley.”
Albert Hofmann

Christopher Hitchens
“We can always be sure of one thing—that the messengers of discomfort and sacrifice will be stoned and pelted by those who wish to preserve at all costs their own contentment. This is not a lesson that is confined to the Testaments.”
Christopher Hitchens, Love, Poverty, and War: Journeys and Essays

Neil Postman
“What we are confronted with now is the problem posed by the economic and symbolic structure of television. Those who run television do not limit our access to information but in fact widen it. Our Ministry of Culture is Huxleyan, not Orwellian. It does everything possible to encourage us to watch continuously. But what we watch is a medium which presents information in a form that renders it simplistic, nonsubstantive, nonhistorical and noncontextual; that is to say, information packaged as entertainment. In America, we are never denied the opportunity to entertain ourselves.”
Neil Postman

Aldous Huxley
“The quality of moral behaviour varies in inverse ratio to the number of human beings involved.”
Aldous Huxley

Aldous Huxley
“Specialized meaninglessness has come to be regarded, in certain circles, as a kind of hallmark of true science.”
Aldous Huxley, Complete Essays, Vol. IV: 1936-1938

Aldous Huxley
“Las palabras, como los rayos X, atraviesan cualquier cosa, si uno las emplea bien.”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Aldous Huxley
“What we feel and think and are is to a great extent determined by the state of our ductless glands and viscera.”
Aldous Huxley

Marcus Sedgwick
“Orwell's vision of our terrible future was that world-- the world in which books are banned or burned. Yet it is not the most terrifying world I can think of. I think instead of Huxley-- ...I think of his Brave New World. His vision was the more terrible, especially because now it appears to be rapidly coming true, whereas the world of 1984 did not. What's Huxley's horrific vision? It is a world where there is no need for books to be banned, because no one can be bothered to read one.”
Marcus Sedgwick, The Monsters We Deserve

Aldous Huxley
“But God doesn’t change.’
'Men do, though.’
'What difference does that make?’
'All the difference in the world.”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Aldous Huxley
“we live together, we act on, and react to, one another; but always and in all circumstances we are by ourselves. the martyrs go hand in hand into the arena; they are crucified alone. embraced, the lovers desperately try to fuse their insulated ecstasies into a single self-transcendence; in vain. by its very nature every embodied spirit is doomed to suffer and enjoy in solitude. sensations, feelings, insights, fancies—all these are private and, except through symbols and at second hand, incommunicable. we can pool information about experiences, but never the experiences themselves. from family to nation, every human group is a society of island universes.

most island universes are sufficiently like one another to permit of inferential understanding or even of mutual empathy or “feeling into”. thus, remembering our own bereavements and humiliations, we can condole with others in analogous circumstances, we can put ourselves (always, of course, in a slightly pickwickian sense) in their places. but in certain cases communication between universes is incomplete or even nonexistent. the mind is its own place, and the places inhabited by the insane and the exceptionally gifted are so different from the places where ordinary men and women live, that there is little or no common ground of memory to serve as a basis for understanding or fellow feeling. words to which the symbols refer belong to mutually exclusive realms of existence.”
Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception

Aldous Huxley
“The sum of evil, Pascal remarked, would be much diminished if men could only learn to sit quietly in their rooms.”
Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception & Heaven and Hell

Aldous Huxley
“For their sadness was a symptom of their love for one another—”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

“You and Aldous Huxley", she said, "both have the same superior hate for the rest of the human race and wouldn't go one inch out of your way to help anyone. Evil has far more reality than good in your minds.”
Kate Hennessy, Dorothy Day; The World Will Be Saved By Beauty: An Intimate Portrait of Dorothy Day

Aldous Huxley
“But wouldn’t you like to be free to be happy in some other way, Lenina? In your own way, for example; not in everybody else’s way.”
Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Aldous Huxley
“Եվ դա է երջանկության և առաքինության գաղտնիքը՝ սիրել այն, ինչ նախատեսված է քեզ համար... Օլդոս Հաքսլի «Չքնաղ նոր աշխարհ»”
Aldous Huxley , Brave New World

Erich Fromm
“Modern man is actually close to the picture Huxley describes in his Brave New World: well fed, well clad, satisfied sexually, yet without self, without any except the most superficial contact with his fellow men, guided by the slogans which Huxley formulated so succinctly, such as: “When the individual feels, the community reels”; or “Never put off till tomorrow the fun you can have today,” or, as the crowning statement: “Everybody is happy nowadays.” Man’s happiness today consists in “having fun.” Having fun lies in the satisfaction of consuming and “taking in” commodities, sights, food, drinks, cigarettes, people, lectures, books, movies—all are consumed, swallowed. The world is one great object for our appetite, a big apple, a big bottle, a big breast; we are the sucklers, the eternally expectant ones, the hopeful ones—and the eternally disappointed ones. Our character is geared to exchange and to receive, to barter and to consume; everything, spiritual as well as material objects, becomes an object of exchange and of consumption.”
Erich Fromm, The Art of Loving

Aldous Huxley
“Kendim olmayı yeğlerim," dedi. "Suratsız da olsa kendim olayım. Ne kadar neşeliyse de başka biri olmak istemem."
kidega.com”
Aldous Huxley

Kevin R.D. Shepherd
“The subject of 'perennial philosophy' is currently one of the many misleading themes employed in vulgar mysticism. Emanating from enthusiasts of traditional religion, this topic has been appropriated by new age communities and figureheads, to the extent that even Huxley can appear profound by comparison. The Latin phrase is often associated with Leibniz, who may be credited with a more genuine attitude, though it is clear that he did not resolve the issue involved. The term philosophy is currently so confused in application that it can mean anything saleable or novelistic.”
Kevin R.D. Shepherd, Some Philosophical Critiques and Appraisals: An Investigation of Perennial Philosophy, Cults, Occultism, Psychotherapy, and Postmodernism

Aldous Huxley
“Desirelessness is the condition of deliverance and illumination. The condition of an expanding and technologically progressive system of mass-production is universal craving. Advertising is the organized effort to extend and intensify craving to extend and intensify, that is to say, the workings of that force, which [...] is the principal cause of suffering and wrong-doing and the greatest obstacle between the human soul and its divine Ground.”
Aldous Huxley, The Perennial Philosophy

“We used to pay too little attention to utopias, or even disregard them altogether, saying with regret they were impossible of realisation. Now indeed they seem to be able to be brought about far more easily than we supposed, and we are actually faced by an agonising problem of quite another kind: how can we prevent their final realisation? ... Utopias are more realisable than those 'realist politics' that are only the carefully calculated policies of office-holders, and towards utopias we are moving. But it is possible that a new age is already beginning, in which cultured and intelligent people will dream of ways to avoid ideal states and to get back to a society that is less 'perfect' and more free.”
Nikolai Berdyaev, The Philosophy of Freedom

Aldous Huxley
“It's only to be expected,' said Mr. Cardan comfortingly. 'Anyone who has anything to say can't fail to be misunderstood.The public only understands the things with which it is perfectly familiar.Something new makes it lose its orientation.And then think of the misunderstandings between even intelligent people, people who know one another personally.'..............Then you must know how easy it is for your correspondent to take the expression of one of your passing moods -forgotten long before the arrival of the letter at its destination - as your permanent spiritual condition.”
Aldous Huxley

Aldous Huxley
“In the same way, the reader of a book who happens to be out of tune with the author's prevailing mood will be bored to death by the things that were written with the greatest enthusiasm. Or else, like the far-away correspondent, he may seize on something which for you was not essential, to make it of the core and kernel of the book.”
Aldous Huxley

Aldous Huxley
“O que nós outros só vemos sob a influência da mescalina pode, a qualquer tempo, ser visto pelo artista, graças à sua constituição congênita. Sua percepção não está limitada ao que é biológica ou socialmente útil. Algo do saber inerente à Onisciência flui através da válvula redutora do cérebro e do ego e atinge sua consciência. Isso lhe dá um conhecimento do valor intrínseco de tudo que existe.”
Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception & Heaven and Hell

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