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  • Published: 1 July 2010
  • ISBN: 9781407053998
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 560

The Passion Of The Western Mind

Understanding the Ideas That Have Shaped Our World View

'The most lucid and concise presentation of Western thought. The writing is elegant and carries the reader with the momentum of a novel... A noble performance' - Joseph Campbell

The Passion of the Western Mind is a complete guide to Western civilisation and the philosophical ideas that have shaped our world view. From Plato to Hegel, from Augustine to Nietzsche, from Copernicus to Freud, Richard Tarnas described profound philosophical concepts simply, but without simplifying them.

Ten years in the making, The Passion of the Western Mind was hailed as an instant classic on publication. In it, Tarnas provides a compelling account of the evolution of the Western mind and its changing conception of reality. Advances on several fronts - in philosophy, psychology, religous studies and the history of science - have shed new light on this remarkable evolution and Tarnas draws together these advances to set forth a new perspective for understanding out culture's intellectual and spiritual history. The result is a complete liberal education in a single volume.

  • Published: 1 July 2010
  • ISBN: 9781407053998
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 560

About the author

Richard Tarnas

Richard Tarnas, Ph.D., is Distinguished Rockefeller Faculty, Professor of Philosophy and Psychology, at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, and is director of its programme in Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness. A graduate of Harvard University and Saybrook Institute, he was formerly director of programmes and education at Esalen Institute.

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Praise for The Passion Of The Western Mind

[This] magnificent critical survey, with its inherent respect for both the 'West's mainstream high culture' and the 'radically changing world' of the 1990s, offers a new breakthrough for lay and scholarly readers alike... Allows readers to grasp the big picture of Western culture as if for the first time

San Francisco Chronicle

30,000 years of Western thought distilled into a powerful, enthralling narrative

Sydney Morning Herald

An extraordinary work of scholarship. It not only places the history of Western thought in perspective, but offers new insights concerning the evolution of our thinking and the future of the whole human enterprise

John E. Mack, winner of the Pulitzer Prize

I have never read a book about the ways in which we think that was clearer or more exciting

John Cleese

Quite brilliant


The best intellectual history of the West in one volume I have ever seen. No other such overview provides, in equal compass, as clear and cogent a survey, Its scholarship is impeccable

Huston Smith, author of The World's Religions

The most thrilling narrative of the West's 3000-year odyssey in pursuit of truth accessible to a broad public... A work of genius

Hellenic Journal