One of the shortest and clearest of the many popular books on modern psychology which have been published.
When she was barely twenty Dion Fortune was working in London just before the 1914-1918 War as a lay analyst and so obtained first hand practical insights into that aspect of the human condition. Her subsequent esoteric work placed a heavy emphasis on the unwisdom of embarking on the Mysteries without thorough inner preparation. In a perfect world this would mean that candidates for initiation would present themselves with a clean bill of psychological health.
At that time the names of the founders of the three original schools were on everybody´s lips; Freud and sex, or perhaps more delicately the love experience ; Jung with his ideas of the transpersonal, as well as the all-important Archetypes and inner processes of alchemical unfoldment; and Adler with his emphasis on the immature personality´s desire to compensate for self-considered inadequacies by the exercise of power.
Although these systems were not fully developed at the time all were within her orbit. Later she recognised the contribution of William McDougall´s investigation of the basic instincts in relation to the human psyche.
MACHINERY OF THE MIND is a good foundation for the understanding of the psychological processes that consciously affect most people at one time or another in their lives. It was considered sufficiently important to form part of the standard background reading for the Study Course offered by the Society of the Inner Light that Dion Fortune founded.