Human beings will be happier - not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That's my utopia.
Writing in the late 1940s, Huxley described radio as "nothing but a conduit through which prefabricated din can flow into our homes--a Babel of distractions." He added that advertising is "the organized effort to extend and intensify craving--to extend and intensify, that is to say, the workings of that force, which (as all the saints and teachers of all the higher religions have always taught) is the principal cause of suffering and wrong doing and the greatest obstacle between the human soul and its divine ground."
...Huxley's attraction to mysticism isn't really surprising; he was, after all, cerebral, introverted, and quite blind--already, by temperament and physical fact, withdrawn from the world. And unlike Thomas Huxley or Matthew Arnold, he found it nearly impossible to articulate any real hope for the future of humankind. Huxley had no more hope in democracy than in organized religion--and only a very guarded belief in the redemptive powers of science. Revealingly, in one late interview, he called Zen "just the sort of inward turning which makes for cushioning an otherwise intolerable existence."
...in the final year of his life, Huxley offered words simple enough that even half-wits could understand. "It is a bit embarrassing," he admitted to a lecture audience, "to have been concerned with the human problem all one's life and to find at the end that one has no more to offer by way of advice than 'Try to be a little kinder.'" [ more ]