Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Holger Kalweit

German Ethnopsychologist, Author

"Our culture needs a great deal more than a changed lifestyle. In the Western mind, thought-structures and the relationship between consciousness and matter are badly out of balance, so that our world has become wholly pervaded by a materialism that is threatening to squash us to death. We are in a state of materialistic hypertrophy, and our eventual self-destruction would in fact be no more than the logical consequence of our attitudes."

"Structures that were hitherto believed to be objective and beginning to dissolve - that “inside” and “outside,” “I” and “you” are so interrelated that they cannot be disentangled and there is no way of measuring the objective “external” world, because all we are measuring are our own yardsticks so that our measurements are no more than observations of our own consciousness."

"The fool exposes the limitations of human criteria, confronts us anew with the undefined nature of our cosmic existence, leads us backstage to make us aware of the artificiality of our cultural values, and then shows us a world without limit, because it is neither categorized nor ordered in accordance with artificial opposites. The sick jester removes these opposites, tears down external and internal barriers and causes us to tumble head over heels from our tailor-made world of lines and demarcations into a more comprehensive and holistic dimension that has no beginning or end."

"Initiation always signifies death and resurrection. This is as true of the rites of passage marking the entry to a new phase of life as it is of shamanic initiation. The former life must be destroyed and erased."

"Life itself is experienced as an endless celebration, an eternal dance and rhythm, continuously pulsating sound. To the initiate, life is a vibrating, harmoniously synchronized melody. The shame works with this feeling of sharing the rhythm of the cosmic dance of fields of energy that are the source, the matrix of all matter."