The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience: The Classic Guide to the Effects of LSD on the Human Psyche

Excerpts & Samples

By Robert Masters

Publisher : Inner Traditions/Bear & Company

ABOUT Robert Masters

Robert Masters
Robert Masters and Jean Houston are well-known pioneers of modern consciousness research and were both among the founders of the Human Potentials Movement. They also coauthored Mind Games: The Guide to Inner Space and The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience. Among the books Robert Masters  More...



One of the most important books written on the effects of LSD on the human psyche.

• Its authoritative research has great relevance to the current debate on drug legalization.

• Prolific authors Robert Masters and Jean Houston are pioneer figures in the field of transpersonal psychology and founders of the Human Potentials Movement.

The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience was published in 1966, just as the first legal restrictions on the use of psychedelic substances were being enacted. Unfortunately, the authors' pioneering work on the effects of LSD on the human psyche, which was viewed by its participants as possibly heralding a revolution in the study of the mind, was among the casualties of this interdiction. As a result, the promising results to which their studies attested were never fully explored. Nevertheless, their 15 years of research represents a  sober and authoritative appraisal of what remains one of the most controversial developments in the study of the human psyche. Avoiding the wild excesses taken by both sides on this issue, this book is unique for the light it sheds on the possibilities and the limitations of psychedelic drugs, as well as on the techniques for working with them. With drug legalization an increasingly important issue, The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience provides a welcome and much needed contrast to the current hysteria that surrounds this topic.

"A wonderful book . . . the best book ever written in this complicated field."

Dr. Timothy Leary

"Beautifully written . . . Masters and Houston are offering what amounts to a whole new system of psychopathology."
New York Times Book Review

"Fascinating . . . provocative . . . The first description of the multiplicity of experiences available through these drugs presented in a manner oriented to western culture and experimental research."
Library Journal

"The most brilliant volume available dealing with the psychedelic experience."
Dr. Stanley Krippner

"I consider the book very important and worthwhile. It is all in the right direction; it gives very sound directives for controlling the use of psychedelics instead of merely repressing them."
Alan Watts