Youth: The Hippies

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prevailing sexual mores, a predilection for pot and peyote, wanderlust, a penchant for Oriental mysticism on the order of Zen and the Veda. Yet the contrasts are even more striking. San Francisco's North Beach was a study in black and white; the Haight-Ashbury is a crazy quilt of living color. Black was a basic color in the abstract-expressionist painting of the beats; hippiedom's psychedelic poster art is blindingly vivid. The progressive jazz of the beats was coolly cerebral; the acid rock of the hippies is as visceral as a torn intestine.

The Negro, a model of cool to the beats, is a rare figure in the hippie scene. "How can a Negro drop out?" asks a New York hippie. "He's there, at bedrock, all the time." The difference is reflected not only in the contrast between Norman Mailer's 1957 beat manifesto, The White Negro, and the "white Indian" affiliation of the hippies, but also in the apolitical nature of hippie philosophy as well. Mailer's model was a white activist who shared the Negro's sense of rage at injustice; the Indian whom many hippies emulate is a primitive man whose ego is submerged in a Jungian tribal consciousness.

Crazy Stop. Except for a few spiritual gurus and swamis, the hippie movement is leaderless and loose. The Beatles—forerunners of psychedelic sound and once again at the forefront with their latest album, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band—are the major tastemakers in hippiedom. (Beatle Paul McCartney admits to taking acid trips.) Yet another guru, Indian Sitar Virtuoso Ravi Shankar, who now has a burgeoning music school in Los Angeles, is dead set against drug use as an enhancement to music. He recently lectured the Monterey Pop Festival audience, chiding them for being stoned while listening to his music, which he claims should be sufficient to turn them on. Timothy Leary, a former Harvard psychologist who coined the "Tune In, Turn On, Drop Out" slogan central to hippie philosophy, was once a major guru but has lately fallen into disfavor with a large majority of hippies, who feel that he is trying too hard to "put his trip" on everyone.

Hippie art, with its improvised music and irrational posters, its spontaneous light shows and ditto-machine "automatic" writing, its quippy axioms and somnambulant dances, relies more on inspiration than discipline. Says San Francisco Poet Jack Gilbert: "They have the courage to take one step—but then they come to a crazy dead stop. They want instant entertainment without any effort. There is a lack of tension in the mind; and how can you have decent art without tension?"

The Drug Experience. That slack is often the product of the drug experience. Defenders of the hippie subculture liken it to a super-Eucharistic ritual, one that has brought drug users, particularly of LSD ("the mind detergent") and the other synthetic hallucinogens, into epistemological experience and thus changed their lives forever. Detractors, many of them former hippies themselves, maintain that the religious turn-on is spurious, that true enlightenment can only come through "natural" means, the meditations and mystical experiences common to every religion in history. Still, in its variety and virulence, the hippie pharmacopoeia is the subculture's most valued possession (though it

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