The Devils Of Loudun . Aldous Huxley He had been found guilty of conspiring with the devil to seduce an entire convent of nuns in what was the most. HUXLEY’S MASTERPIECE AND PERHAPS THE MOST ENJOYABLE BOOK ABOUT SPIRITUALITY EVER WRITTEN..” — Washington Post Book WorldAldous. The Devils of Loudun: Aldous Huxley: most important later works are The Devils of Loudun (), a detailed psychological study of a historical incident in .

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Nov 01, Mark rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: His beliefs found expression in both fiction ‘Time Must Have a Hudley, and ‘Island’, and non-fiction ‘The Perennial Philosophy’,’Grey Eminence’, and the famous account of his first mescalin experience, ‘The Doors of Perception’, However, Aldous examines the case for which Grandier was tried, not his general character.

In case you’re thinking this is all sort of flaky, I should mention that he also devotes considerable attention to psychology and psychiatry, as well. Lastly, people in the 17th century believed crazy things and did awful, cruel things to each other.

However, while the Mother Hxuley, Sister Jeanne of the Angels, clearly had an axe to grind against Grandier for issues regarding organizational leadership and not so much for womanizing the towniesthat also seems unsatisfactory as a cause for these sisters to behave as they did.

Not the simple stuff: In his novel The Devils of Loudun, Aldous Huxley tells the story of the persecution, torture and death of Grandier in an almost light-hearted, jolly manner that hooks in the reader while at the same time making the true horror of Grandiers death unbearably real.

It deals with actual events, that’s true. To ask other readers questions about The Devils of Loudunplease sign up.

Chapter 3 is a lecture on 17th century French philosophy and includes references to William James. In essence, when juxtaposed to his inquisitors, he becomes the lesser of two evils. I’ve read many historical novels, but none like this. Huxley touches on aspects of the multiple personality controversy in cases of apparent demonic possession within this book.

He faced an ecclesiastical tribunal and was acquitted. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

The Devils Of Loudun

Through painstaking torture, Urbain continues to refuse to admit. It’s just the kind of a story that shocks and fascinates with every its turn, that compresses so much of the darkness and nastiness a human is capable of.


However; if you focus only on the story of Grandier’s martyrdom, presented in perhaps too realistic shades of grey, you I found a Vintage Classics paperback version of this book in the Warsaw airport a while back, and reading it caused me to immediately buy several more of Huxley’s books. I never thought one could tell this story in such a dry, dull, monotone way as Aldous Huxley did.

Description In Urbain Grandier, a handsome and dissolute priest of the parish of Loudun was tried, tortured and burnt at the stake. It’s drier than the Mojave Desert. Huxley provides a very interesting summary and explanation of the events surrounding nuns possessed by the devil and the priest who was wrongly accused and burned at the stake for instigating the mayhem.

On a hot August day inFather Urbain Grandier, the priest of the church of Saint Croix in the French city of Loudun was slowly burned alive at the stake for the crimes of sorcery and spell casting as well as his responsibility in the possession and corruption of the cities enclosed Ursuline nuns of during what has been come to be known as the Loudun Possessions. My constructive criticism to Huxley if he wasn’t dead would be to focus on the character of Urbain Grandier. It’s difficult to show sympathy for Grandier when he seduced and abandoned Philippe after getting her pregnant.

But Huxley was also interested A fascinating account of a reported case of devil possession in Loudun France in the early 17th Century that resulted in the execution of a Priest who was most certainly not guilty.

The Devils of Loudun

The crushing of Grandier’s legs and his burning alive show the unforgiving malevolence of which fundamentalists are capable when placed in power and have the freedom to use that power, not for the public good but for their own personal privilege.

Books by Aldous Huxley. Huxley opens a vibrant speculative world that, in this book, provides an extended postscript with more of a feeling of reality than the sensationalistic, impossibly literal ‘main’ story of Grandier. Email required Address never made public.

One of Huxuley’s message is that in exorcising imaginary demons you can summon real ones, not only that but the persecution of witches, or whatever the current undesirable type of person is, propagandises their power, and creates more of them. Definitely worth a read if you have an interest in this subject or how it pertains to psychology or sociology.

The community in which the trail and execution took place provides an example of group think and mass hysteria, reminding me how little we have changed in the last three hundred years. I think people with an interest in historic influences of the church, spiritualism, the human psyche, mass hypnotism, effects of torture on information gathering and other neat things like that would dig this book.


As the West braced itself for war, Huxley came increasingly to believe that the key to solving the world’s problems lay in changing the individual through mystical enlightenment.

The Devils of Loudun | work by Huxley |

Felt it lost its way in discussions of spirituality, but characterisation and psychology were sound. Such an outlandish book.

Huxley does make references to hkxley ideas and values but they are not essential to his conclusion. We use cookies to give you the best possible experience. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. See 2 questions about The Devils of Loudun…. Through never-ending trials and appeals, enough uhxley evidence is garnered to sell the court on the ‘fact’ that Urbain is guilty of sorcery and was the reason why the Loudun nuns and the prioress were possessed.

One can not, therefore, rule out the possibility that a will or an intellect can exist on a non-physical level. Without this, I would have given the book 5 stars, but I’m not saying his digressions are without merit. Chronicles hulxey events around Loudun, France that Ken Russell portrays in his particular fashion in the infamous film one of my favorites”The Devils.

He defined what that theology understood as the nature of soul. Fascinating account of the political machinations of the church at the time of Richlieu and how witch hunts and possessions could be used as tools to get rid of those that stood in the way of power grabs, how celibacy in religious callings led to neurosis, delusion and ultimately a failure to reach transcendence, how exorcism was seen as a public spectacle and how the egos of the “possessed” and the exorcists were displayed in their sordid performances.

The Devils of Loudun is still an important book for out time. The Devils Of Loudun. It is multiplicity in isolation from its non-dual Ground.

Although not a work of fiction, his narrative style helps the reader feel that they are witnessing the events and, my god this is not a happy experience. Got interested in reading this book after seeing Ken Russell’s “The Devils” the other month.