Icarus of Brooklyn: A Spiritual Quest Gone Wrong

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9780966036718: Icarus of Brooklyn: A Spiritual Quest Gone Wrong
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At some point in our early youth, we come to recognize the grim fact that all living things--ourselves included--die. From the moment Matthew Alper made this connection, he yearned to understand the nature of death. Was it a permanent ending or, as many believed, the advent of a new beginning? Only a higher power, it seemed, could answer such lofty questions, and so it became Matthew's chief aim to acquire knowledge of God. Thus begins the personal journey that is Icarus of Brooklyn: A Spiritual Quest Gone Wrong.

From early childhood Matthew devotes himself to the investigation of all things magical, mystical and philosophical in search of ultimate meaning. Only Matthew is no Buddha. The product of Jewish bohemian Brooklynites, Matthew is impish and irreverent. Evolving from a hopeful innocent to a skeptical adolescent, Matthew begins experimenting with psychedelic drugs to hasten his quest for transcendence only to have a bad LSD trip that precipitates a tragic descent into madness, attempted suicide and hospitalization. Like the Greek tale of Icarus, it is the story of a man who will stop at nothing to gain a glimpse into the Heavens only to be burned for his hubris and wanton recklessness. Through a fortunate twist of fate, Matthew is restored to find redemption in a life of contentment without spiritual certitude.

Sometimes in the search for ultimate answers one gets burned.

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About the Author:

Matthew Alper is the author of the highly acclaimed and influential book The God Part of the Brain: A Scientific Interpretation of Human Spirituality [Sourcebooks]. Praised by prominent scientists, academics and Pulitzer prize winners and lauded as a cult classic by Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and Salon.Com, The God Part of the Brain is considered a pioneering work, if not the first of its kind, in the burgeoning field of neurotheology. Matthew Alper attended Vassar and graduated from SUNY Stonybrook with a B.A. in Philosophy. He has worked as a history teacher in the Brooklyn projects, a tutor in the Philippines, an electrician in England, a truck smuggler in Central Africa and a produced screenwriter in Germany.

Review:

Icarus is a treasure, an epic tale, beautifully written, of the expansion and conquest of one's own mind told with humor and humility that is impossible to put down. As Alper skillfully guides the reader through this universal, yet deeply personal quest for ultimate meaning, he meets his biggest fears, simultaneously forcing us to meet ours. Icarus is an inspiring and highly entertaining story, not just a book really but an experience, with astonishing transformative power. Any teenager, adult, atheist or spiritual seeker who opens this book will not be the same person at closing it--guaranteed. --J. Perch, MD, Princeton University Medical Center

Bold, Innovative, Triumphant! A must read for anyone who s questioned the meaning of existence. --A. Sadwin, MD, Chief of Neuropsychiatry, Graduate Hospital, University of Pennsylvania

A philosophical rollercoaster ride that will make you think, laugh out loud and cry all in one sitting. In a word, Brilliant! --S. Harney, Ph.D. Baruch College

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Matthew Alper
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