Great literature and a good buzz go hand in hand, so here are five books that will enhance and entrance.
For many users marijuana can be a tool for staying very focused on a single subject or task. And since most people who love reading appreciate that kind of focus and dedication, the two go hand in hand. So pick up a bowl and these books to read while high!
Kornwolf by Tristan Egolf
A dark secret from the past is lurking in a rural Amish community, and when a troubled teenager gets ahold of a Slayer cassette, the evil is unleashed and the Kornwolf (werewolf) wreaks havoc on a once quiet community that had hoped it could forget its past.
Although the premise of the book is absurd, its portrayal of the cracks where the new world meets the old world is touchingly crafted. It has humor and heart and the poetic beauty characteristic of the authors three novels, written before committing suicide at the age of 33.
Excerpt from Chapter 1:
At once, it was clear Ephraim and Jonathan had made a mistake. And terribly, irreversibly so-there was no way to angle the buggy around with a full lane of steadily oncoming traffic. Their own lane, devoid of an adequate shoulder, was backed up for three hundred yards from the Sprawl Mart-a ten-acre superstore complex-ahead.
An oncoming tour bus gradually slowed to a crawl on approaching Jonathan’s buggy. Ephraim looked up to see walleyed Redcoats staring down on them. One of them slammed his head to the tinted window in mute incapacitation. The driver’s voice came over the intercom: “Don’t worry folks, these people are guaranteed nonviolent. Just try to remember: The camera steals their souls. So, if you must, try and shoot on the sly.”
Flashbulbs exploded. Ephraim winced. He singled out one of the cameras and pointed. The Redcoat blinked, apparently startled. Ephraim threw him a middle finger and whirled on Jonathan, agitated, motioning: “Where’s the stereo?” Jonathan glanced over one of his shoulders, into the boot. Ephraim followed his gesture and, presently, pulled up the battery-powered player. Then he inserted Reign in Blood.
Jonathan reached for the stereo, desperately trying to silence the roar.
But Ephraim, inwhite-knuckled rapture, blocked his attempt with a sweep of one leg and then went on, much to the shock of surrounding motorists (if equally geared to the protesters’ cheering) to tighten the reigns, angle the buggy out into the oncoming lane, and charge.
Lamb by Christopher Moore
The rest of the title, The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal, pretty much says it all. Brought back from the dead and into the modern world where he is locked in a hotel room with heavens dumbest daytime television addicted angel, Biff is conscripted to write another chapter for the bible containing all of his best friend Jesus missing years.
Travelling around the world looking for enlightenment, answers and adventure, the two friends find out who they are and what their fate is – while inventing sarcasm and the tradition of eating Chinese food on His birthday. This humorous portrayal of the time of Jesus life not recorded in the bible manages to be gut-achingly hilarious without being overtly offensive or irreverent. Christopher Moore, as he almost always does, paints characters with depth and complexity while being one of the greatest humorists of our time.
Excerpt from Chapter 1:
You think you know how this story is going to end, but you dont. Trust me, I was there. I know.
The first time I saw the man who would save the world he was sitting near the central well in Nazareth with a lizard hanging out of his mouth. Just the tail end and the hind legs were visible on the outside; the head and forelegs were halfway down the hatch. He was six, like me, and his beard had not come in fully, so he didnt look much like the pictures you’ve seen of him. His eyes were like dark honey, and they smiled at me out of a mop of blue-black curls that framed his face. There was a light older than Moses in those eyes.
“Unclean! Unclean!” I screamed, pointing at the boy, so my mother would see that I knew the law, but she ignored me, as did all the other mothers who were filling their jars at the well.
The boy took the lizard from his mouth and handed it to his younger brother, who sat beside him in the sand. The younger boy played with the lizard for a while, teasing it until it reared its little head as if to bite, then he picked up a rock and mashed the creatures head. Bewildered, he pushed the dead lizard around in the sand, and once assured that it wasnt going anywhere on its own, he picked it up and handed it back to his older brother.
Into his mouth went the lizard, and before I could accuse, out it came again, squirming and alive and ready to bite once again. He handed it back to his younger brother, who smote it mightily with the rock, starting or ending the whole process again.
I watched the lizard die three more times before I said, “I want to do that too.”
The Savior removed the lizard from his mouth and said, “Which part?”
By the way, his name was Joshua. Jesus is the Greek translation of the Hebrew Yeshua,which is Joshua. Christ is not a last name. It’s the Greek for messiah, a Hebrew word meaning anointed. I have no idea what the “H” in Jesus H. Christ stood for. It’s one of the things I should have asked him. Me? I am Levi who is called Biff. No middle initial. Joshua was my best friend.
Set This House In Order by Matt Ruff
Every book by Matt Ruff is so unique they could have all been written by separate authors. So it is only natural that he wrote the greatest fictional look at multiple personality (disassociative identity) disorder ever.
To escape a severely troubled childhood, the main character has fractured their own identity into several major and minor players. In order to manage them so that the more dangerous ones do not cause any harm, a mental house is constructed with everyone and everything in their place. And this strategy manages to work for a time, until becoming entwined with another multiple personality sufferer who hasn’t yet learned how to manage their own illness. Together they spiral out of control, ultimately leading to tragedy, reconciliation and growth. A fascinating fiction based look into the human mind and the human condition.
Excerpt from Chapter 1:
I met Penny Driver two months after my twenty-eighth birthday — or two months after my second birthday, depending on how you want to count it.
Jake was up first that morning, as he is most mornings, barreling out of his room around sunrise, thundering down the stairs to the common room, the clamor of his progress setting off a chain reaction of wakings among the other souls in the house. Jake is five years old, and has been since 1973, when he was born from the wreckage of a dead soul named Jacob; he is a mature five, but still basically a little kid, and not very good about respecting other people’s need for quiet.
Jake’s stomping roused Aunt Sam, who started up cursing; and Aunt Sam’s cursing woke Adam, who has the room next to hers; and Adam, who is old enough to respect other people’s need for quiet, but often chooses not to, let out a series of war whoops until my father banged on the wall and told him to knock it off. By then, everyone was awake.
I might have tried to ignore it. Unlike the others, I don’t sleep in the house, I sleep in the body, and when you’re in the body, even the loudest house-noises are just echoes in Andy Gage’s head that can be tuned out at will — unless they come from the pulpit. But Adam knows this, of course, and whenever I do try to oversleep, he’s out on the pulpit in no time, crowing like a rooster until I take the hint. Some days I make him crow himself hoarse, just to remind him who’s boss; but on this particular morning, my eyes were open as soon as Jake hit the stairs.
The room where I slept — where the body slept — was in a renovated Victorian in Autumn Creek, Washington, twenty-five miles east of Seattle. The Victorian belonged to Mrs. Alice Winslow, who had first taken my father on as a boarder back in 1992, before I even existed.
We rented part of the first floor. The space was large but cluttered, clutter being an inevitable side effect of multiplicity, even if you make an effort to keep real-world possessions to a minimum. Just lying there in bed, and without even turning my head, I could see: Aunt Sam’s easel, brushes, and paints, and two blank canvases; Adam’s skateboard; Jake’s stuffed panda; Seferis’s kendo sword; my books; my father’s books; Jake’s little shelf of books; Adam’s Playboy collection; Aunt Sam’s stack of art prints; a color television with remote that used to be my father’s but now belonged to me; a VCR that was three-fifths mine, three-tenths Adam’s, and one-tenth Jake’s (long story); a CD player that was one-half mine, one-quarter my father’s, one-eighth Aunt Sam’s, and one-sixteenth apiece Adam’s and Jake’s (longer story); a rack of CDs and videotapes of various ownerships; and a wheeled hamper of dirty clothes that no one wanted to lay claim to, but was mostly mine.
That’s what I could see without even looking around; and besides the bedroom, there was a sitting room, a big walk-in closet, a full bathroom that was full in more ways than one, and the kitchen that we shared with Mrs. Winslow. The kitchen wasn’t so cluttered, though; Mrs. Winslow cooked most of our meals for us, and strictly limited our personal food storage to one shelf in the refrigerator and two shelves in the pantry.
I got us out of bed and into the bathroom to start the morning ritual. Teeth came first. Jake really enjoys brushing for some reason, so I let him do it, stepping back into the pulpit and giving him the body. I stayed alert. Jake, as I’ve mentioned, is a child; but Andy Gage’s body is adult and five-foot-seven, and hangs on Jake’s soul like a suit of clothes many sizes too big. He moves clumsily in it, and often misjudges the distance between his extremities and the rest of the world; and as we’ve only got the one skull between us, if he bends over to get a dropped toothpaste cap and bashes his head on the corner of the sink, it is a group tragedy. So I kept a close eye on him.
This morning there were no accidents. He did his usual thorough job of brushing: side to side, up and down, getting every tooth, even the tricky ones in back. I wish he could handle the flossing as well, but that’s a little too dexterous for him.
I took the body back and had a quick squat on the toilet. This is my job most mornings, though my father occasionally asks to do it — the pleasure of a good shit, he says, being one of the few things he misses from outside. Adam also volunteers sometimes, usually just after the latest Playboy has arrived; but I generally don’t indulge him more than once or twice a month, as it upsets the others.
After the toilet came exercise. I stretched out on the bath mat beside the tub and let Seferis run through his routine: two hundred sit-ups followed by two hundred push-ups, the last hundred evenly divided between the right and left arms. I came back from the pulpit to muscle burn and a lather of sweat, but I didn’t complain. The body’s stomach is as flat as a washboard, and I can lift heavy things.
Next I gave Adam and Aunt Sam two minutes each under the shower, starting with Aunt Sam. They used to alternate who went first, but Aunt Sam likes the water a lot warmer than Adam does, and Adam was always “forgetting” to adjust the temperature control …
Prometheus Rising by Robert Anton Wilson
For those of you who would prefer to read non-fiction and for everyone who wants to have their minds completely blown, one of the 20th centuries greatest thinkers and writers takes us on a deep journey into the nature of humanity and reality to try to understand who and what we are, and how to use that to our advantage.
Based around the the Eight Circuit Model of Consciousness and the idea of ‘reality tunnels’ of Timothy Leary, Wilson uses zen, old movies, quantum physics, linguistics, the magical traditions of Aleister Crowley and many other seemingly unconnected lenses to peek into the deepest mysteries of existence and the self. Much of the brilliance comes out in the form of great questions, rather than preachy answers and absolutes. Reality is what you can get away with.
(available online here for free in .pdf)
Excerpt from Chapter 1:
William James, father of American psychology, tells of meeting
an old lady who told him the Earth rested on the back of a huge
“But, my dear lady,” Professor James asked, as politely as
possible, “what holds up the turtle?”
“Ah,” she said, “that’s easy. He is standing on the back of
“Oh, I see,” said Professor James, still being polite. “But
would you be so good as to tell me what holds up the second
“It’s no use, Professor,” said the old lady, realizing he was
trying to lead her into a logical trap. “It’s turtles-turtles-turtles,
all the way!”
Don’t be too quick to laugh at this little old lady. All human
minds work on fundamentally similar principles. Her universe
was a little bit weirder than most but it was built up on the same
mental principles as every other universe people have believed
As Dr. Leonard Orr has noted, the human mind behaves as if
it were divided into two parts, the Thinker and the Prover.
The Thinker can think about virtually anything. History
shows that it can think the earth is suspended on the backs of
infinite turtles or that the Earth is hollow, or that the Earth is
floating in space; comparative religion and philosophy show
that the Thinker can regard itself as mortal, as immortal, as both
mortal and immortal (the reincarnation model) or even as nonexistent
(Buddhism). It can think itself into living in a Christian
universe, a Marxist universe, a scientific-relativistic universe, or
a Nazi universe—among many possibilities.
As psychiatrists and psychologists have often observed (much
to the chagrin of their medical colleagues), the Thinker can think
itself sick, and can even think itself well again.
The Prover is a much simpler mechanism. It operates on one
law only: Whatever the Thinker thinks, the Prover proves.
To cite a notorious example which unleashed incredible
horrors earlier in this century, if the Thinker thinks that all Jews
are rich, the Prover will prove it. It will find evidence that the
poorest Jew in the most run-down ghetto has hidden money
somewhere. Similarly, Feminists are able to believe that all men,
including the starving wretches who live and sleep on the streets,
are exploiting all women, including the Queen of England.
If the Thinker thinks that the sun moves around the earth, the
Prover will obligingly organize all perceptions to fit that thought;
if the Thinker changes its mind and decides the earth moves
around the sun, the Prover will reorganize the evidence.
If the Thinker thinks “holy water” from Lourdes will cure its
lumbago, the Prover will skillfully orchestrate all signals from
the glands, muscles, organs etc. until they have organized themselves
into good health again
Of course, it is fairly easy to see that other people’s minds
operate this way; it is comparatively much harder to become
aware that one’s own mind is working that way also.
The Principia Discordia by Greg Hill & Kerry Thornley
We have touched on fiction, nonfiction, religion, humor and high strangeness – but this book is all of them combined. The Principia Discordia is the sacred text of a rare religious group called the Discordians (yes, I am one). Discordianism is centered around the Greek Goddess of Chaos – Eris, as well as ideas about anarchism, minimalism and absurdism. It is zen surrealism, but don’t be fooled – underneath all of the humor and seemingly irreverent nonsense lies a powerful philosophy that can be best summed up in the classic children’s tale of the old lady who swallowed a fly.
If the cast of Monty Python created a religion with clever historical references and deep allegorical underpinnings, it would be the Principia Discordia, whose co-creator Kerry Thornley also happened to write a book about Lee Harvey Oswalt years before JFK’s assassination. Coincidence or chaos? Only Eris knows. Please consult your pineal gland and beware of the fnords.
(available free online in it’s entirety right here)
Excerpt from Chapter 39:
The Discordian Society has no definition.
I sometimes think of it as a disorganization of Eris Freaks. It has been called a guerrilla mind theatre. Episkopos Randomfactor, Director of Purges of Our People’s Underworld Movement sect in Larchmont, prefers “The World’s Greatest Association of What-ever-it-is-that-we-are.” Lady Mal thinks of it as a RENAISSANCE THINK TANK. Fang the Unwashed, WKC, won’t say. You can think of it any way you like.
AN EPISKOPOS OF THE DISCORDIAN SOCIETY is one who prefers total autonomy, and creates his own Discordian sect as The Goddess directs him. He speaks for himself and for those that say that they like what he says.
THE LEGION OF DYNAMIC DISCORD: A Discordian Society Legionnaire is one who prefers not to create his own sect.
If you want in on the Discordian Society
then declare yourself what you wish
do what you like
and tell us about it
or if you prefer
There are no rules anywhere.
The Goddess Prevails.