Carlos Castaneda Books In Order

Publication Order of The Teachings of Don Juan Books

The Teachings of Don Juan (1968)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Separate Reality (1971)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Journey to Ixtlan (1972)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Tales of Power (1974)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Second Ring of Power (1977)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Eagle's Gift (1981)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Fire from Within (1984)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Power of Silence (1987)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Art of Dreaming (1993)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Magical Passes (1997)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Wheel of Time (1998)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Active Side of Infinity (1999)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Carlos Castaneda was an American author that built a reputation out of the mystery of his person and the enigma surrounding his work. The controversy surrounding Carlos’ books has always revolved around the question of whether they are fact or fiction.

Even though the books were published as fictitious works, many of Carlos’ fans have since come to the conclusion that his accounts of training to become a Shaman under the mysterious Don Juan Matus are actually true and represent an accurate testament of the things Carlos Castaneda endured.


Carlos Castaneda was born in Cajamarca, Peru in 1925 to Susana Castaneda Navoa and Cesar Arana Burungaray. Carlos grew up in Peru, though he eventually moved to the United States and became a naturalized citizen in the 1950s.

He author eventually met and married Margaret Runyan in 1960, though their relationship has since become the source of debate and controversy. Not only did the pair only live together for six months, but Carlos’ death certificate says that he was never married.

Carlos’ journey to fame began while he was studying anthropology at the University of California, Los Angeles. As part of his research log, Carlos wrote ‘The Teachings of Don Juan’, a book through which he spoke of his apprenticeship with a Yaqui Indian from Northern Mexico known as Don Juan Matus.

Even after he acquired his Bachelor’s degree and Ph.D. Carlos Castaneda continued to chronicle his supposed tutelage under Don Juan, with each new book exposing new aspects of his training.

According to Carlos, who wrote these books as though they were an accurate account of his life, his teacher recognized him as a leader of sorts amongst seers and that he had some sort of connection to the unknown.

Carlos’ books gained renown because his supporters were certain that they were true accounts of the author’s ascendency as a seer; the books were also recognized for their contribution to philosophy, especially in their description of the practices used to attain increased awareness.

Many an academic scholar attempted to discredit the books, though, with some critics endeavoring to highlight the contradictions between Carlos Castaneda’s claims in the books and anthropological data, not to mention the absence of corroborating evidence to back some of the author’s claims.

However, these challenges to Carlos’ books only worked to grow his reputation as fans and critics alike delved further into his works in an attempt to find some sort of consensus on the debate.

Not that any of these debates mattered to Carlos Castaneda, the one person in the world that could have shed light on the argument. Even though his books had made the author such a popular public figure, Carlos rarely exposed himself to public scrutiny.

In fact, for all the fame that his books elicited, almost everything known about Carlos was little more than speculation, some media sources even going so far as to suggest that the cover portrait Carlos used for his books was just a surrogate.

The few interviews that Carlos permitted did little to clear up the misunderstandings surrounding his person. And after a while, Carlos completely retired from public view, allowing the mystery of his being to drive the popularity of his works.

Carlos Castaneda died in 1998. His death was imputed to his fight with Hepatocellular cancer. Carlos died just as he lived: surrounded by mystery and enigma. A public service wasn’t even permitted, with the author’s body being quickly cremated and his ashes taken out of the country to Mexico.

It took two months for news of Carlos’ death to proliferate throughout the literary world. His passing did little to quell debates about his encounters with Don Juan Matus, with many today still trying to ascertain whether or not don Juan Matus is a real person.

Carlos Castaneda touched many readers with his story of a young hero becoming apprenticed to a Shaman and seeking enlightenment.

+The Teachings of Don Juan

The first book in the Don Juan series tells the amazing story of a young fellow looking to become an extraordinary man of knowledge. The journey he undertakes challenges the reader’s understanding of reality.

This is the most controversial book that Carlos Castaneda has ever written. While some readers view it as a powerful volume filled with unending wisdom, others dismiss it as the rantings of a man stumbling through a psychotropic experience after smoking one too many plants in Mexico.

Fans of Carlos will tell you to forget about all the controversies surrounding this book. It doesn’t matter whether or not Don Juan ever existed or if Carlos actually undertook this supposed journey to attain enlightenment.

What matters is the message hidden within Carlos’ words, the profound writings scattered throughout this short book and the engaging questions the book elicits amongst those who have read it.

It has been claimed that the New Age movement elicited many of its teachings and ideas from the observations Carlos makes in this book. That alone should be enough to prove that this book can transcend its controversy and questions of its authenticity to become an educational tool for the seeking.

+A Separate Reality

The second volume in the Don Juan books finds Carlos returning to Mexico and to the teachings of Don Juan seeking an experience unlike any Western Civilization has ever seen. Carlos rips apart the veil between this reality and the world of magic.

In the first Don Juan book, Carlos finished out his five-year apprenticeship to Don Juan and left. In this book, he comes back to see what more there is to learn from his sorcerer of a teacher.

‘A Separate Reality’ differs from its predecessor in that it doesn’t focus as much on philosophical teachings. Instead, Carlos smokes a lot of mushrooms and reveals the observations he makes on his new journey.

Carlos is learning to become a warrior. It requires that he learn about other sorcerers and make new allies. The book makes an effort to explore reality as it is seen by people, with Carlos highlighting the fact that people generally define their worlds, the words they internalize manifesting as truths over time.

There are so many cryptic messages in this book, so many more vague references than in the first, which might prove annoying for some people.


Book Series In Order » Authors » Carlos Castaneda