The Reality Overload: The Modern World's Assault on the Imaginal Realm

Excerpts & Samples

By Annie Le Brun

Publisher : Inner Traditions/Bear & Company

ABOUT Annie Le Brun

Annie Le Brun
Annie Le Brun, a member of the French Surrealist group during its later years, is a poet and essayist who has written books on subjects as varied as the work of Raymond Roussell and the war in the former Yugoslavia. Her groundbreaking work on the Marquis de Sade has been translated into En More...



A powerful critique of the increasing mechanization and homogenization of modern life

• Shows how the constant force-feeding of too much information dispossesses us of our deepest connections

• Describes a link between the destruction of the environment with the assault on our individuality, creativity, and ability to think for ourselves

What underlies the many problems of the modern world--from accelerating rates of extinction and desertification to the increased alienation of the individual--is a reality overload, an increasingly invasive mechanization and homogenization of modern life that glorifies consumption and conformity. This overload has been created from the constant force-feeding of too much information, a phenomenon that dispossesses us of our deepest connections to time, our physical world, and each other.

Annie Le Brun explains that the degradation of the environment mirrors the devastation going on in our minds revealing a link between genetically modified foods and the transformation and decay of our language and communication. There is a direct relationship between the rupture of the great biological balances that govern the planet and the equally devastating rupture in our imaginal realm. The imaginal realm is the home of our dreams and the perceptions that feed our thoughts, individuality, and creativity. Without its influence we are forced to live a drab, alienated lifestyle based on consumption alone. If, as Shakespeare claims, “we are such stuff as dreams are made on,” this theft of our imagination by the reality overload threatens the very foundations of our existence.
“It’s a common complaint that we have more information than we know what to do with. Annie Le Brun reveals that the problem is not just information overload, it’s lack of imagination and an information-drenched reality. The Reality Overload will make you think twice about what really matters.”
Christian de Quincey, author of Radical Knowing and Consciousness from Zombies to Angels

“Annie Le Brun skillfully defines why we have lost our natural balance and points the way to regaining harmony with ourselves and the world. A timely and eloquent resource, The Reality Overload offers a journey of awakening and revitalization. I encourage you to embark on it.”
Kenneth Smith, author of Awakening the Energy Body

"This is an astonishing book, one of the best crafted books I've read. . . . an intellectual tour de force, raising provocative issues and warrants an in-depth review."
Jeff Farrow, reviewer, Jan 2009

" . . . challenging, yet resonant and rewarding work for ones familiar with the prevailing understandings of postmodernism."
Henry Berry, reviewer, The Midwest Book Review, Dec 2008

"The author links many modern ills to this information overload fact, discussing relationships between ecology, human actions, and the abandonment of the magical realm and dreams . . . a pick for both new age and philosophy collections."
The Midwest Book Review, Jan 2009

"The Reality Overload is an intriguing treatise on modern society, highly recommended."
Library Bookwatch of  The Midwest Book Review, Feb 2009