Humans have always sought ecstatic experiences - moments where they go beyond their ordinary self and feel connected to something greater than them. Such moments are fundamental to human flourishing, but they can also be dangerous.
Beginning around the Enlightenment, western intellectual culture has written off ecstasy as ignorance or delusion. But philosopher Jules Evans argues that this diminishes our reality and denies us the healing, connection and meaning that ecstasy can bring.
He sets out to discover how people find ecstasy in a post-religious culture, how it can be good for us, and also harmful. Along the way, he explores the growing science of ecstasy, to help the reader - and himself - learn the art of losing control.