Gandalf's Garden

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Gandalf's Garden

A British experimental community of the sixties situated in Chelsea, London, embracing popular mysticism, yoga, meditation, gurus, and occultism. It was a meeting place for young people interested in such topics, with a craft shop and free food. The center was founded by Muz Murray, an art student who spent seven years hitchhiking in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. He claims that while in Cyprus during 1964 he experienced mystical awareness, which he later compared with the LSD experience, finding the latter inferior. He developed Gandalf's Garden (named after author Tolkien's white wizard in Lord of the Rings ) to create a spiritual and mystical lifestyle for young people. Their journal, Gandalf's Garden, included articles on new and old systems of developing changes in consciousness presented in the somewhat sensationalist pop style of the sixties.

Gandalf's Garden was dispersed in 1971 into various "seed centers" in different parts of the world, and the journal ceased publication. The "Friends of the Garden" described their centers as "gatherings of people who are not restricted by or to any one spiritual viewpoint, religion, sect or path, and who are open to the totality of things to be discovered in this incredible state of existence, whether it be from the intuitive mystical experience or the aware scientific investigation of the Cosmos." There is a Friends of the Garden Central Seed Centre at 24 St. Margaret's Close, Norstead, Norwich, England.

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