Synopses & Reviews
Growing up in the suburbs of Boston and raised on secular Judaism, Cocoa Puffs, and Gilligans Island
, Peter Bebergal was barely in his teens when the ancient desire to finding higher spiritual meaning in the universe struck. Already schooled in mysticism by way of comic books, Dungeons and Dragons, and Carlos Castaneda, he turned to hallucinogens, convinced they would provide a path to illumination.
Was this profound desire for Goda god he believed that could only be apprehended by an extreme state of altered consciousnesssimply a side effect of the drugs? Or was it a deeper human longing that was manifesting itself, even on a country club golf course at the edge of a strip mall?
Too Much to Dream places Bebergals story within the cultural history of hallucinogens, American fascination with mysticism, and the complex relationship between drug addiction, popular culture, rock n roll, occultism, and psychology. With a captivating foreword by Peter Coyote, and interviews with writers, artists, and psychologists such as Dennis McKenna, James Fadima, Arik Roper, Jim Woodring, and Mark Tulin, Bebergal offers a groundbreaking exploration of drugs, religion, and the craving for spirituality entrenched in Americas youth.
"'How could an 18-year-old in his parents' suburban basement, tripping on acid and listening to Pink Floyd, expect to commune with the gods, when he didn't even know their names?' Bebergal (The Faith Between Us) provides a first-hand account of the life of a young addict, as processed through the mature, reasoned voice of sobriety. As he searched for a mystical experience, he tried it all imaginary worlds, occultism, philosophy, religious traditions, and various illegal substances but never found the answer. Told with compassion and understanding for his young self as well as his unsuspecting parents, this memoir traces his path from high school dropout to mature family man, through marijuana, acid, cocaine and alcohol with a dose of the I-Ching, Tarot, and Jewish traditions. The book may interest those in addiction counseling or who are attempting to get clean themselves, as his analysis of addictive behavior provides material for thought and discussion. In the end, Bebergal offers hope that his addictive behavior can rest, and that he's discovered the bliss of the everyday. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A little bit of acid, lots of weed, and too much Castaneda and I was ready to move from the magical realm of Middle Earth into a world that was much stranger than any involving hairy dwarves and white wizards . . . I sought a world where people took risks with their bodies and their minds, where music fed ideas and action, where sex was not a mysterious ideal but a tangible thing involving jeans and bra straps and saliva. I wanted to find Bifröst, the rainbow bridge that connects mortals to the gods . . . I didnt quite know it yet, but what I wanted was rock and roll.”
Too Much to Dream places the story of a young mans drug addiction inside the larger history of psychedelics and popular culture. Bebergals story gives a personal face to the examination of our cultural history, offering a radical vision regarding the complex relationship between drug addiction, popular culture, and the religious experience.