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Lost Knowledge of the Imagination Paperback – January 15, 2018

4.5 out of 5 stars 25 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

'Lachman...manages to make basic concepts in esoteric philosophy and history lively as well as readable.'
– Kirkus Reviews

'Lachman creates a history of ideas that fascinates and excites'
– New York Journal of Books

'One of the leading students of the western esoteric tradition, Lachman has published critical studies of Swedenborg, Madame Blavatsky, Aleister Crowley, Rudolf Steiner, P.D. Ouspensky and Jung – and he has done so without being raptly worshipful or casually dismissive.'
– Washington Post

'Very important'
– Philip Pullman

'[A] compact, erudite and thoughtful book.'
– Scientific and Medical Network Journal

'An excellent book – scholarly but eminently readable by anyone seeking appreciation of the spiritual.'
– Howard Jones, Alister Hardy Society

'Lost Knowledge of the Imagination rejoins the parted Red Sea of modern intellect, demonstrating how rationalism and esotericism are not divided forces but necessary complements and parts of a whole in the human wish for understanding. Let's be done, once and for all, with the shallow and misdirected notion that reason and mysticism are at odds. Lachman demonstrates their harmony.'
– Mitch Horowitz, PEN Award-winning author of Occult America and One Simple Idea: How Positive Thinking Reshaped Modern Life

'Gary Lachman has done an impressive amount of research. His thesis is very carefully laid out and his conclusions are sensible and attractive.'
– Magonia Review of Books

'I thought this was an excellent book – scholarly but eminently readable for anyone seeking appreciation of the spiritual.'
– De Numine, The Journal and Newsletter of the Alister Hardy Trust

'Gary Lachman is one of my favorite authors alive. Scholarly in his approaches to esoteric topics and historical figures, Lachman has blessed us with a deep crop of books... Thankfully, Lachman is here to emphasize the importance and power of the imagination, and the inner and outer worlds of the mind – 4.5/5 stars'
– Rusties

From the Inside Flap

Imagination is a core aspect of being human. Our imagination allows us to fully experience ourselves in relation to the world and reality. Imagination plays a key role in creativity and innovation.

Since the seventeenth century, however, imagination has been sidelined and dismissed as 'make believe'. Four centuries ago, a new way of knowing the world and ourselves emerged in the west and has gone on to dominate human life: science. Imagination has been marginalised – depicted as a way of escaping reality, rather than coming to grips with it – and its significance to our humanity has been downplayed.

Yet as we move further into the strange new world of the twenty-first century, the need to regain this lost knowledge seems more necessary that ever before.

This insightful and inspiring book argues that, for the sake of the future of our world, we must redress the balance. Through the work of Owen Barfield, Goethe, Henry Corbin, Kathleen Raine, and others, and ranging from the teachings of ancient mystics to the latest developments in neuroscience, The Lost Knowledge of the Imagination introduces the reader to a philosophy and tradition that restores imagination to its rightful place, and argues that it is not only essential to our knowing reality to the full, but to our very humanity itself.


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4.5 out of 5
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Reviewed in the United States on November 20, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on January 24, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on December 23, 2017
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Top international reviews

Jus'me
5.0 out of 5 stars Another stimulating opus from a true explorer of consciousness
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 23, 2018
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DMK
5.0 out of 5 stars Impressive Insight
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 12, 2018
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lgriff27
5.0 out of 5 stars Turn on your mind:antidote to the '60's revolution!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 29, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars Carefully thought out, well constructed, thought provoking, unexpectedly illuminating..
Reviewed in Australia on July 24, 2019
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sirjulianmontague
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing is lost or impossible if we can but dream
Reviewed in India on June 2, 2018
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Photek86
5.0 out of 5 stars A unique and profound exploration of the imagination.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 20, 2017
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KidLotus
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 19, 2017
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dbrazier@ndirect.co.uk
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read. A very important book.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 18, 2017
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