The End of a Road, 1970

The End of a Road came out in 1970 in the slipstream of The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross. John saw it as a companion volume. On the premise that The Sacred Mushroom had demolished the church’s pretensions to moral authority, he asked: Why should twentieth-century people owe any allegiance to a fertility myth? What gave a fictional first-century rabbi the right to tell people how to run their lives, then or now – apart from ma set of generalized “thou shalt nots” wrested from their context and impracticably vague by comparison with real contemporary law codes? It was time for people to stand on their own feet, to close the gate at the end of the church’s road, and step out on the road of compassion, responsibility, and common sense.

This book is not a post-mortem examination of a moribund Church. In it I am not primarily concerned with the cult of the sacred fungus, which fully deserved all the abusive epithets heaped upon its perversions by the Romans when they tried to suppress the ‘Christians’. It deals with the end of one road, and more particularly the opening up of a new, wider highway for all men to travel. We shall look to some of the problems now facing mankind and bearing down on us with the dramatic advances in modern technology in a shrinking world, and see how old and inadequate moral sanctions can be revised or replaced by new ones. We shall discuss how the present catastrophe of a discredited Christianity can be turned to good account through seizing the opportunity for fresh, creative thinking in a society free from the inhibitions of religious dogma. Let the dead bury their dead. (End of a Road p. 18)

The End of a Road was published by:

Macgibbon and Kee, London – 1970 Hardback 1st edition
Dial Press, N.Y., 1970 – Hardback 1st US edition ISBN: 1135620660
Dial Press, N.Y., 1971 – Paperback
Panther, London, England – 1972 Paperback