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Be Here Now

Product no.: 0-517-54305-2
Published in 1971, Be Here Now is the book that introduced a generation of Westerners to the teachings of the East.

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Publisher's Synopsis

Dass takes us on his personal journey that includes the mind-expanding powers of LSD, his trip to India, and his experiences with Neem Karoli Baba.

The book is broken up into several sections including “Journey: The Transformation: Dr. Richard Alpert, Ph.D. Into Baba Ram Dass,” “From Bindu to Ojas: The Core Book,” and “The Cookbook for a Sacred Life: A Manual for Conscious Being.”

In “The Cookbook for a Sacred Life,” Dass introduces you to the basics of Hindu religion, in which he presents information on a whole range of concepts and practices having to do with yoga postures, meditation, renunciation, dying, and sexual energy.


"One of those blessed synchronicities that helped define and integrate the paradigm shift of the late '60s and early '70s by introducing yet another father-figure, God-send Guru (e.g. Don Juan, Chogyam Trungpa), Baba Ram Dass, to a disillusioned, disgruntled generation. When read in the right time and place (set and setting), the potential is a mind-expanding experience of monumental proportions."      ~Mandala Books

"Be Here Now was the original Now book 20 some years before Eckhart Tolle's Power of Now, written in 1971 amidst the backdrop of the Beatles, Beach Boys, and the Woodstock era. It was also the era of Vietnam, Wounded Knee and Watergate. It was in these tumultuous times my formal entry into spirituality and mysticism began with reading Be Here Now, along with Carlos Casteneda's Don Juan trilogy."       ~Swami Sadashiva Tirtha

"Be Here Now (1971) is a classic text on Hindu spirituality that bloomed open like a lotus flower in the wake of the hippie movement. The seed for this book was planted in the mind of Harvard psychiatrist turned Indian mystic, Ram Dass, and was written – with the blessings of his guru Neem Karoli Baba – for a Western audience who were, for the most part, materially rich but spiritually poor. Be Here Now offered it’s readers and followers a drug free alternative for attaining higher states of consciousness, while its simple message to live in the present encouraged the pursuit and cultivation of inner peace.

Since it’s original publication the book has sold more than 2 million copies and has had an enormous influence on the Western world’s adoption of Eastern philosophy and spirituality. I can’t speak for everybody, but my copy of Be Here Now is one of my most treasured possessions, it opened the door of spiritual discovery and casually pointed towards the way. To this day, Be Here Now’s teachings shine like the sun and penetrate even the darkest spaces. I recommend it with all my heart to those with an open mind, and a thirst for self discovery."      ~Michael Cunningham

"At one point I took five people and we locked ourselves in a building for three weeks and we took 400 micrograms of LSD every four hours. That is 2400 micrograms of LSD a day, which sounds fancy, but after your fist dose, you build a tolerance; there's a refractory period. We finally were just drinking out of the bottle, because it didn't seem to matter anymore. We'd just stay at a plateau. We were very high. What happened in those three weeks in that house, no one would ever believe, including us. And at the end of the three weeks, we walked out of the house and within a few days, we came down!

And it was a terribly frustrating experience, as if you came into the kingdom of heaven and you saw how it all was and you felt these new states of awareness, and then you got cast out again, and after 2 or 300 times of this, began to feel an extraordinary kind of depression set in -- a very gentle depression that whatever I knew still wasn't enough!"

Richard Alpert was born in 1931, the son of a wealthy lawyer who was the president of the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad Company and the first Chairman of the Brandeis University Board of Trustees. Alpert studied psychology and earned an M.A. from Wesleyan and a Ph.D. from Stanford. From 1958 to 1963, he taught and conducted research at the Department of Social Relations and the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University.

While at Harvard, Alpert's explorations of human consciousness led him to conduct intensive research with LSD and other psychedelic elements, in collaboration with Timothy Leary, Aldous Huxley, Allen Ginsberg, and others. Because of the controversial nature of this research, both he and Leary were dismissed from Harvard in 1963.

In 1967 he traveled to India where he met the spiritual teacher, Neem Karoli Baba. Under his guru's guidance, he studied yoga and meditation and received the name Ram Dass, or "servant of God." Since 1968, he has pursued a variety of spiritual practices, including Hinduism, karma, yoga and Sufism. His book Be Here Now brought him further into the public eye in 1971.

Author Dass, Ram (Richard Alpert)
Book Type Trade Paperback
Page Count 416 pp.
Publisher Lama Foundation 1971
Gold Medal

Gold Medal


  Gold Medal Essential Reading

Browse these categories as well: Spiritual Biography and Autobiography, Neoshamanism and Entheogenic Healing, Metaphysics, Mysticism and Initiation, Hinduism: Gurus and Advaita Vedanta, Hindu Transcendental Meditation, Gold Medal Essential Reading

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