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REVIEWS FOR THE MIND PARASITES
Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. © Marie D. Jones, 2005
The Mind Parasites is a disturbingly creepy story of monsters that live within the depths of human consciousness, feeding off our energy and keeping us depressed, dumbed-down, anxious and living below our potential. Sounds like a common, everyday disease! But noted author Colin Wilson’s horror story is fiction, and you have to keep reminding yourself of that little fact as you read this classic metaphysical thriller.
A professor of archeology discovers the existence of mind parasites while on a dig at an excavation site that has a dark and disturbing history of its own. When Gilbert Austin, our hero of sorts, receives the documents of a dead colleague, he is intrigued by passages referring to these mind monsters that live and feed off of human consciousness. Austin has an experience of his own that proves the parasites exist, and soon he is finding even more proof at an archeological dig in Turkey, where he confides in his colleague.
Eventually, they learn that the parasites have existed for centuries, and that they are now preparing to destroy the human species. The war against the mind parasites begins with worldwide consequences as a small group of people who possess the mental strength and control are gathered together to fight the mind monsters.
The fate of humanity rests with the ability of very few people to sharpen their minds enough to control the sheer ignorance and laziness of the majority. That alone is enough to send chills down the reader’s spine, and much of this book echoes our own modern predicament, where the tribal or mass consciousness allows all kinds of horrible things to occur in our world, including their own misery and unhappiness. The Mind Parasites is part sci-fi, part horror novel, with plenty of solid commentary on the paradigms that shape human society and evolution thrown in, giving it more of a nonfiction feel, and many times I had to remind myself I was reading a novel and not a first-person account by a real scientist reporting on a real situation.
That’s what makes this such a skin-crawling read, one that will poke and prod at your mind, distressing and disturbing your relative calm with its ripples of unease. Because, like the mind parasites, this story does its damage just below the surface, and you have to pay attention to understand why.
Man is a continent, but his conscious mind is no larger than a back garden… man consists almost entirely of unrealized potentials.
First published in 1967 and celebrated in those years as a supernatural metaphysical cult thriller, The Mind Parasites is a fable of ideas, a philosophical investigation that uses the form of the novel—with story, action, characters and dialogue—to embody an exploration of reality. As Gary Lachman writes in his foreword, “The medium is not looked upon with much encouragement these days, but Plato employed it, as later did Borges, so it has a respected pedigree.”
This new 2005 edition includes a new afterword by the author and a foreword by Gary Lachman, where he writes:
The real subject of the novel is human consciousness… I emerged from my recent re-reading with the feeling that the real ‘mind parasites’ are ourselves. We take our minds, our inner worlds, for granted, and do practically nothing to develop their rich potential.
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