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The Cracking Tower: A Strategy for Transcending 2012 Paperback – November 3, 2009
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“Jim DeKorne expertly weaves together diverse threads…into a coherent vision of the challenges and potential that inhabit our modern psyche.”
“The collection of sources, woven together by DeKorne’s keen intellect, becomes, not so much eclectic, as a multifaceted view of a numinous path unfolding in a common language of the Perennial Philosophy. This is a good book, intellectually stimulating, with diverse and always relevant quotations.”
—Circles of Light
"This is an interesting philosophical exploration of two opposing views of the world- materialist vs. perennial. One holds that what you see is what you get, the other that there is more to life than meets the eye and that we are all a part of the divine being… If you are interested in philosophy and spirituality, you will find it a fascinating read." —My Spirit Radio
About the Author
Jim DeKorne is a former epidemiologist and college English professor. He participated actively in civil rights and antiwar protests in the 1960s, the back-to-the-land and appropriate technology movements of the 1970s, and the psychedelic renaissance of the 1980s. He lives on the Big Island of Hawaii.
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Top Customer Reviews
After reading Jim's website, and his post on reality sandwich, I decided that the book might be more than its title and I was right. I recommend this book to anyone who has experienced Samadhi, or anyone who is "searching for enlightenment". For me, this book puts a lot of things into perspective. The author has managed to put insights that have come to me over the years that I have been afraid to discuss with anyone, down on paper.
He writes with a sense of humor, but he is very practical, down to earth, and easy to read. He also simplifies things by adopting Perennial Philosophy; looking at the common threads within many belief systems, and discarding all the extraneous B.S.
To those who have read Psychedelic Shamanism, this book is not about drugs. It is instead about getting into the "meat and potatoes" of the psychedelic experience. This is probably a good prequel to reading Stanislav Grof material; it explains why you would want to put yourself through all that. Unfortunately, you will have to do "the work" that DeKorne talks about yourself. The book will not do it for you! (A bit disappointing, I was really hoping that this book would be The One! :-D). It does give you some hints, and a general map to navigate the long road though. Ever seen those county maps that they give you for free at those highway info centers? Well, at least it's something! This is not a book for anyone who is looking for some earthly figurehead, or guru to follow. Go to his website. See his finger? It is pointing at the Moon!
The one thing that seems lacking, is how to avoid and filter out the realms and voices (the psychosis he talks about) which serve to distract, and get us away from our true purpose. Lots of spiritual leaders pretend to do this, and leave you tangled in a web. Whether you use a Ouija board, psychedelics, the I Ching, or whatever method you prefer, the unwanted realm can still get in and try and influence unless we can some how tune/filter them out. There are so many options available to alter our consciousness, what we need now is to know how to fine tune it, and rise above all the lower realm confusion altogether, and get to our true fundamental consciousness. I think that is when you experience Samadhi.
Jesus' teachings were very important to the original Gnostics. The Nag Hammadi library is referenced to in the Cracking Tower, but very little mention is made of Jesus. I think that he (lower case - not a typo) tried to help us bypass the lower realms by teaching us how to purify our consciousness, but very few people actually saw where his finger was really pointing. They were, and still are too busy pointing fingers at him; in more ways than one! Too bad his words were written down centuries after spoke them... What if people focused on his teachings, and on the work of returning to the Divine instead of worshipping Jesus as God? Some did, they were called Gnostics, not very popular back in the day, not with all that psychosis running rampant like a cancer on the Earth. Jim does explain very well why that psychosis is running rampant all over this Earth, it really is worth the read!
There are some teachings out there about eliminating desires and attachments (not very popular with today's society) to get the mind fine tuned, but the trap with that is that you would have the desire to eliminate desires! I hope Jim's next book deals with that issue. I know that I will probably be reading it after December 21 2012.
Terence Mckenna fans won't like this book, but if you are one who dares to try and resist the Borg, you will love it!
HE DRAWS FORTH INSIGHTS GLEANED FROM A LIFETIME OF STUDY AND SCHOLARSHIP TO PRESENT A REAL JEWEL. THIS GLEAMING JEWEL
SHINES WITH AN ETERNAL LIGHT.
The chapters, each labeled in descending order of the Sephirot from the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, have more to do with the Perennial Philosophy itself than anything science has mustered up, but he does a good job of tying the mystical and the scientific together to make his arguments convincing. My favorites are Chapter Two: The Structure of Reality Is the Structure of Mind; Chapter Four: Bodies Are Vessels of Consciousness; Chapter Seven: Inner Guidance; Chapter Nine: Archons Are Archetypes Are Us; and, of course, the final Eleventh Chapter which gives the book its title: The Cracking Tower.
While the subject of what will happen in the year 2012 is, to my mind, not the emphasis nor the real value of DeKorne's work, his explanations do put whatever will take place at that time in their proper perspective. This book covers the conclusions of a man who has striven to put together many traditions, from Taoism to Alchemy to Gnosticism to Kabbalah to Theosophy to Tibetan Buddhism to Yoga and reconciled them with Hermeticism, Carl Jung's teaching, Quantum Physics, psychedelics, and the I Ching. The narrative is a ride not for the simply curious and casual seeker; it is serious stuff, but expressed in a manner that is very easy to read.
I suspect many readers will have some of the works referenced in DeKorne's bibliography in their own libraries. However, after reading his latest book, I think they may want to take those books off the shelf and review them again in light of a new awakening to what is really going on. That's the real value of The Cracking Tower.
Which is what makes the book a refreshing change from all of the drum-beaters and flag wavers of apocalypse. Basically his advice for surviving 2012 is to use it as an energy source for your own personal revival. Not a bad idea.
He is bemused by Leary and Kesey, enthralled by Lilly and disappointed by McKenna.
In the end he turns to the I Ching, but fails to give examples for the reader to grasp why the Chinese oracle should be given such weight. I was a bit frustrated by this.
Definitely worth reading and re-reading.