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LSD: Doorway to the Numinous

The Groundbreaking Psychedelic Research into Realms of the Human Unconscious

A pioneering book that explores the unknown landscape of human consciousness induced by LSD and other psychedelics

• Shows the relationship between shamanism, near death experiences, and other mystical and altered states with those induced by psychedelics

• Lays the conceptual foundation for the creation of important new therapies in psychiatry and psychology

Stanislav Grof’s first 17 years of research into nonordinary states of consciousness induced by LSD and other psychedelics led to a revolutionary understanding of the human psyche. His research was the impetus behind a vastly expanded cartography of the unconscious, including two new realms still unacknowledged by official academic circles--the perinatal domain, which holds memories of the various stages of birth, and the transpersonal domain, which mediates experiential identification with other species and mythic figures, visits to archetypal realms, access to past life memories, and union with the cosmic creative principle.

The research presented in this book provides a map of the psyche that is essential for understanding such phenomena as shamanism and near death experiences as well as other nonordinary states of consciousness. This map has led to the development of important new therapies in psychiatry and psychology for treating mental conditions often seen as disease and therefore suppressed by medication. It also provides a new threshold to understanding and entering the numinous realm of spirit.

Stanislav Grof, M.D., is a psychiatrist who has been principal investigator at the Psychiatric Research Institute in Prague, Chief of Psychedelic Research at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center, and assistant professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University. He is now professor of psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies. His 20 books include Beyond the Brain, Psychology of the Future, The Cosmic Genius, and Spiritual Emergency. He lives in California. In 2019, Stanislav Grof was cited as one of the "100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People in the World" according to Watkins Mind Body Spirit magazine.

“The most significant development in the recent history of depth psychology, and the most important advance in the field since Freud and Jung themselves, has been the work of Stanislav Grof.”

– Richard Tarnas, Ph.D., author of The Passion of the Western Mind

“A breakthrough work.”

– Jean Houston, Ph.D., coauthor of The Varieties of Psychedelic Experience

“Stanislav Grof is the undisputed world authority on LSD and the human psyche, and this book provides the best cartography of consciousness for understanding the profound impact of entheogens on the mind.”

– Alex Grey, artist and author of Sacred Mirrors and Transfigurations

“Dr. Stanislav Grof's LSD: Doorway to the Numinous is an extraordinary alchemical text that overturns many commonly held beliefs about the nature of individual identity and consciousness. Based on his 2,500 clinical sessions using LSD as a therapeutic tool before the substance was interdicted, Grof's book explores the vast dimensions of inner experience that have been ignored and marginalized by the mainstream. He also provides a theoretical framework for understanding these amazing experiences that synthesizes Freudian and Jungian insights into the dark matter of the unconscious and the primal drives that secretly impel us to act. A must-read for all serious students of consciousness.”

– Daniel Pinchbeck, author of 2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl and Breaking Open the Head

“I know of no work that so well incorporates the findings of Freud, Jung, and Rank, adding fresh insights that the methods of these psychotherapists could never have achieved. It certainly goes beyond Freud. It brings new clarification to Jung. It throws new light on the topic of death and resurrection symbolism, as well as on religious imagery. I do not doubt that others working in this field will find Dr. Grof's discoveries a basis for a whole new strategy of research.”

– Joseph Campbell, author of The Hero with a Thousand Faces, The Masks of God, and Myths to Live By

“Stanislav Grof ’s research is the most important contribution to personality theory in several decades.”

– Abraham Maslow, Ph.D., psychologist, cofounder of Humanistic and Transpersonal Psychology, and autho

“An exceptionally clear and readable introduction to the evolving psychology of the spirit--transpersonal psychology--that is one of the most exciting developments of our times. Grof is far and away one of the leading scientists exploring this field.”

– Charles Tart, Ph.D., psychologist and author of States of Consciousness, PSI: Scientific Studies of

“Dr. Grof's studies of the mystical experience in LSD therapy represent an extremely valuable scientific approach to consciousness research from which many people can benefit.”

– Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Tibetan lama and author of Born in Tibet, Spiritual Materialism, and Medit

“Grof has had far and away more experience in psychedelic research than anyone else and has come up with the most comprehensive and helpful framework for interpreting the data in this bewildering area.”

– Huston Smith, Ph.D., author of The World’s Religions and Beyond the Post-Modern Mind

“Grof marshals an impressive array of data and speculation in support of the timely demand that Western science acknowledge consciousness and its many nonordinary states.”

– Richard Alpert (Ram Dass), Ph.D., psychologist, spiritual teacher, and author of Be Here Now, Grist

“A fascinating journey through previously uncharted realms of the psyche guided by one of the world’s foremost consciousness researchers. A remarkable account of the extraordinary depths of the human psyche.”

– Frances Vaughan, Ph.D., psychologist and author of Awakening Intuition and The Inward Arc

" . . . Grof's engrossing state-of-the-science overview argues convincingly that continued LSD reserach will help patients, parents, policymakers, and even spiritual seekers."

– Publishers Weekly, Feb 2009

"Dr. Grof's efforts should be lauded and highly commended in the scientific and medical community. His clinical research is courageous and luminous to anyone who is conscious of the body's metaphysiology and higher energy dynamics. This field of research is as important to the human animal as molecular scientific inquiry into the etiology of neoplasias."

– Dr. Ron Shane, reviewer, April 2009

"Dr. Grof has helped to give us new ways of seeing the world . . . He has opened a link between the psyche and the spirit."

– Nexus New Times Magazine, Sept/Oct 2009

"For any serious student of psychedelics or psychology, this is an important read that should not be ignored. In terms of building a foundation for the future of the psychedelic movement and finding a place for psychedelics in society, LSD:Doorway to the Numinous is without question the text. Authoritative, insightful, and self-aware."

– Psychedelic Press, UK, Feb 2010