Breaking Through: A Narrative of the Great Work

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9780872863194: Breaking Through: A Narrative of the Great Work

fiction/philosophy, intro Colin Wilson

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From Publishers Weekly:

This unusual novel is a rigorous intellectual exercise in probing the nature of consciousness. Piero Tallini, a cinematographer exploring a filming site in southern Spain, finds himself communicating inexplicably with the first humans to live there. Through Tallini's mystical contact with these ancient people, he is taken on a cerebral trip through their understanding of reality and their development of language. At the same time, Tallini comes to realize his own cosmic connection to his physical environment and to all life forms. VandenBroeck introduces ancillary characters?Tallini's best friend in Paris, a mysterious woman, a gypsy?but the primary plot is Tallini's solitary conversion experience. This is not for the general reader, and VandenBroeck (Al-Kemi) doesn't pretend it is. The heady issues?and the intricate writing style ("Beyond the sustaining of the gaze, there is no representation in this case, though the effect of symmetry peculiar to a horizontal mirror image is obeyed: in sustained eye contact, a right eye gazes into a left, and vice versa")?is for fans of the philosophical novel and maybe a few ambitious New Age readers. The unconverted may feel upon the novel's completion, however, that the piousness here, while dressed up in the author's obvious intelligence, has begun to wear thin.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

These days, novels touted as "genuinely philosophical" should cause red flags to go up, particularly if edited by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. VandenBroeck, whose previous titles include Philosophical Geometry and A Memoir: Hermetic, Occult, Political and Private Aspects of R. A. Schwaller de Lubicz, has written some pretty cerebral stuff. In Breaking Through, Tallini, an Italian filmmaker searching for his next subject, becomes obsessed with the Paleolithic culture of southern Spain. The novel is an allegory on the conflict between science and spirituality. Ultimately, Tallini learns to look for life's meaning not through science, but in the consciousness of the present. At times, Breaking Through could refer to the author's occasionally dense prose. Overall, the book is impressive for the diversity of intellectual subjects it covers. Recommended for libraries serving readers of the avant-garde. Ted Leventhal

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VandenBroeck, André
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