Deepest thoughts and musings of a 1960s countercultural icon
• Includes 108 of Michell’s most insightful, erudite, witty, and occasionally scathing essays on diverse topics ranging from sacred practices of the Stone Age to the evils of the metric system to the madness of modernity
• Describes principles to live in tune with the divine order of the world and discover the “paradise of the philosophers” of ancient times.
• Includes an introductory overview by Joscelyn Godwin of Michell’s entire career
A countercultural icon of the 1960s, John Michell (1933-2009) was perhaps best known for his books on sacred geometry, Earth mysteries, and unusual phenomena. He was also beloved and reviled for his radical, idealistic, yet classically traditional views on a wide range of heretical topics, from sacred practices of the Stone Age to the evils of the metric system to the madness of modernity and the unfolding apocalypse.
Carefully selecting 108 of Michell’s most insightful, erudite, witty, and occasionally scathing essays from his column in the monthly magazine The Oldie, esoteric scholar Joscelyn Godwin presents a colorful collection of Michell’s writings and rants that cover nearly every aspect of society, history, and traditional wisdom. In these short essays, Michell takes on agribusiness, Darwinism, superstition, Stonehenge, the insanity of modern society, UFOs, Jesus, fairies, the Grail legend, among many other topics. No matter how small the topic under consideration, Michell always takes a larger view on it, illuminating it with light from above.
Godwin’s artful selection and ordering of essays reveals Michell’s overarching grand view of the world at large. We glimpse the heart of Michell as idealistic Platonist and radical traditionalist, absorb his common sense lessons for living in tune with the divine order, and are reminded that the elusive “paradise of the philosophers” of ancient times is still within reach for those with the strength of vision to see it.
About the Author
John Michell (1933-2009), educated at Eton and Cambridge, was the pioneer researcher and specialist in the field of ancient, traditional science. Author of more than twenty-five books, his work has profoundly influenced modern thinking, including The Sacred Center, The Dimensions of Paradise, The New View Over Atlantis, Secrets of the Stones, and The Temple of Jerusalem: A Revelation.
Joscelyn Godwin was born in Kelmscott, Oxfordshire, England on January 16, 1945. He was educated as a chorister at Christ Church Cathedral School, Oxford, then at Radley College (Music Scholar), and Magdalene College, Cambridge (Music Scholar; B.A., 1965, Mus. B., 1966, M.A. 1969). Coming to the USA in 1966, he did graduate work in Musicology at Cornell University (Ph. D., 1969; dissertation: "The Music of Henry Cowell") and taught at Cleveland State University for two years before joining the Colgate University Music Department in 1971. He has taught at Colgate ever since.
“A self-styled Merlin of the 1960s counterculture who inspired disciples like the Rolling Stones with writings about UFOs, prehistoric architecture and fairies . . .”
— New York Times
“In this interesting collection, full of memorable details, John Michell commits many charming acts of political heresy against the received wisdoms of contemporary life, advocating by example where freedom still resides.”
— Richard Heath, author of Sacred Number and the Lords of Time
“Joscelyn Godwin has shown exceptional empathy with Michell’s worldview in his judicious arrangement of the writings.”
— Patrick Harpur, author of The Secret Tradition of the Soul and The Philosophers’ Secret Fire
“Refreshingly original, yet genuinely grounded in tradition. John Michell is wise, mischievous, and amusing. He has expanded the frontiers of British sanity and enriches the lives of those who know him and his works.”
— Rupert Sheldrake, author of Morphic Resonance
“Forget trepanning, John Michell opened my third eye years ago. His revelations and the mysteries he touches upon are in my head forever--life would be dead dull and probably impossible without this extra and true dimension.”
— Candida Lycett Green, coauthor of The Garden at Highgrove