Aldous Huxley quotes

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Aldous Huxley

Birthdate: 26. July 1894
Date of death: 22. November 1963
Other names: Aldous L. Huxley, Aldous Leonard Huxley

Aldous Leonard Huxley was an English writer, novelist, philosopher, and prominent member of the Huxley family. He graduated from Balliol College at the University of Oxford with a first-class honours in English literature.

The author of nearly fifty books, he was best known for his novels including Brave New World, set in a dystopian future; for non-fiction works, such as The Doors of Perception, which recalls experiences when taking a psychedelic drug; and a wide-ranging output of essays. Early in his career Huxley edited the magazine Oxford Poetry and published short stories and poetry. Mid career and later, he published travel writing, film stories, and scripts. He spent the later part of his life in the United States, living in Los Angeles from 1937 until his death. In 1962, a year before his death, he was elected Companion of Literature by the Royal Society of Literature.

Huxley was a humanist, pacifist, and satirist. He later became interested in spiritual subjects such as parapsychology and philosophical mysticism, in particular universalism. By the end of his life, Huxley was widely acknowledged as one of the pre-eminent intellectuals of his time. He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in seven different years.

Works

Island
Island
Aldous Huxley
Ends and Means
Ends and Means
Aldous Huxley
Point Counter Point
Point Counter Point
Aldous Huxley
Crome Yellow
Crome Yellow
Aldous Huxley
Eyeless in Gaza
Eyeless in Gaza
Aldous Huxley
Antic Hay
Antic Hay
Aldous Huxley
Heaven and Hell
Aldous Huxley
Ape and Essence
Ape and Essence
Aldous Huxley
The Art of Seeing
The Art of Seeing
Aldous Huxley
Those Barren Leaves
Those Barren Leaves
Aldous Huxley
Grey Eminence
Grey Eminence
Aldous Huxley

„Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.“

—  Aldous Huxley

"Note on Dogma"
Proper Studies (1927)
Source: Complete Essays 2, 1926-29

„After silence that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.“

—  Aldous Huxley

"The Rest is Silence"
Source: Music at Night and Other Essays (1931)

„But I don't want comfort. I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin.“

—  Aldous Huxley, book Brave New World

Variant: I want God, I want poetry, I want danger, I want freedom, I want sin.
Source: Brave New World

„Maybe this world is another planet's Hell.“

—  Aldous Huxley

As quoted in Peter's Quotations: Ideas for Our Time (1979) by Laurence J. Peter, p. 239

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„An intellectual is a person who has discovered something more interesting than sex.“

—  Aldous Huxley

As quoted without citation in Discovering Evolutionary Ecology: Bringing Together Ecology And Evolution (2006) by Peter J. Mayhew, p. 24
Attributed

„There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.“

—  Aldous Huxley

Aldous Huxley, using the term "the doors of perception" which originated with William Blake in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. It is sometimes credited to Morrison because he cited it in interviews as the inspiration for the name The Doors and without always crediting Huxley as the source.
Misattributed

„That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons that history has to teach.“

—  Aldous Huxley

Source: " A Case of Voluntary Ignorance http://www.christiebooks.com/ChristieBooksWP/2013/11/a-case-of-voluntary-ignorance-by-aldous-huxley/" in Collected Essays (1959)

„One believes things because one has been conditioned to believe them.“

—  Aldous Huxley, book Brave New World

The Controller, Mustapha Mond, in Ch. 17
Variant: People believe in God because they've been conditioned to believe in God.
Source: Brave New World (1932)

„The secret of genius is to carry the spirit of the child into old age, which means never losing your enthusiasm.“

—  Aldous Huxley

Variant: The secret of genius is to carry the spirit of the child into old age, which means never losing your enthusiasm.

„Experience is not what happens to a man; it is what a man does with what happens to him.“

—  Aldous Huxley

Texts and Pretexts (1932), p. 5
Source: Texts & Pretexts: An Anthology With Commentaries
Context: The poet is, etymologically, the maker. Like all makers, he requires a stock of raw materials — in his case, experience. Now experience is not a matter of having actually swum the Hellespont, or danced with the dervishes, or slept in a doss-house. It is a matter of sensibility and intuition, of seeing and hearing the significant things, of paying attention at the right moments, of understanding and co-ordinating. Experience is not what happens to a man; it is what a man does with what happens to him. It is a gift for dealing with the accidents of existence, not the accidents themselves. By a happy dispensation of nature, the poet generally possesses the gift of experience in conjunction with that of expression.

„Something inexpressively lovely and wonderful advances through the crystal, nearer, nearer. And, oh, inexpressively terrifying. For if it were to touch you, if it were to seize you and engulf you, you'd die; all the regular, habitual daily part of you would die … one would have to begin living arduously in the quiet, arduously in some strange, unheard of manner.“

—  Aldous Huxley, book Antic Hay

Antic Hay (1923)
Context: There are quiet places also in the mind', he said meditatively. 'But we build bandstands and factories on them. Deliberately — to put a stop to the quietness. … All the thoughts, all the preoccupations in my head — round and round, continually What's it for? What's it all for? To put an end to the quiet, to break it up and disperse it, to pretend at any cost that it isn't there. Ah, but it is; it is there, in spite of everything, at the back of everything. Lying awake at night — not restlessly, but serenely, waiting for sleep — the quiet re-establishes itself, piece by piece; all the broken bits … we've been so busily dispersing all day long. It re-establishes itself, an inward quiet, like the outward quiet of grass and trees. It fills one, it grows — a crystal quiet, a growing, expanding crystal. It grows, it becomes more perfect; it is beautiful and terrifying … For one's alone in the crystal, and there's no support from the outside, there is nothing external and important, nothing external and trivial to pull oneself up by or stand on … There is nothing to laugh at or feel enthusiast about. But the quiet grows and grows. Beautifully and unbearably. And at last you are conscious of something approaching; it is almost a faint sound of footsteps. Something inexpressively lovely and wonderful advances through the crystal, nearer, nearer. And, oh, inexpressively terrifying. For if it were to touch you, if it were to seize you and engulf you, you'd die; all the regular, habitual daily part of you would die … one would have to begin living arduously in the quiet, arduously in some strange, unheard of manner.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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