Alan Watts was a famous British philosopher who was an ambassador and interpreter of eastern philosophy to western cultures. With over 25 profound books under his belt, he delved into Buddhism, Taoist and Vedanta. He is regarded as a very influential being who helped bring a unique perspective within Eastern Indian spiritual practices to the United States.
When he began his studies of Zen when he moved to New York, Alan Watts really brought a new enlightened, experimental and imaginative consciousness to the field. He explored new thinking metrics from a very open and aware angle. Upon earning a strong following and being very receptive, Alan Watts began teaching at the Academy of Asian Studies in San Francisco where he became the Dean, he gave regular radio talks at Berkley and then published his first best seller. He was quickly becoming a pioneer in the field of philosophy and psychedelic trials. By the sixties he became a counterculture celebrity who spoke at universities and around the world.
These quotes by Alan Watts will give us a deeper understanding of not only his powerful ideologies and philosophies but also of ourselves.
10 Inspirational Alan Watts Quotes
“The art of living… is neither careless drifting on the one hand nor fearful clinging to the past on the other. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, in regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive.” – Alan Watts
“I have realized that the past and future are real illusions, that they exist in the present, which is what there is and all there is.” – Alan Watts
“And the attitude of faith is the very opposite of clinging to belief, of holding on.” – Alan Watts
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“Advice? I don’t have advice. Stop aspiring and start writing. If you’re writing, you’re a writer. Write like you’re a goddamn death row inmate and the governor is out of the country and there’s no chance for a pardon. Write like you’re clinging to the edge of a cliff, white knuckles, on your last breath, and you’ve got just one last thing to say, like you’re a bird flying over us and you can see everything, and please, for God’s sake, tell us something that will save us from ourselves. Take a deep breath and tell us your deepest, darkest secret, so we can wipe our brow and know that we’re not alone. Write like you have a message from the king. Or don’t. Who knows, maybe you’re one of the lucky ones who doesn’t have to.” – Alan Watts
“No work or love will flourish out of guilt, fear, or hollowness of heart, just as no valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now.” – Alan Watts
“The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.” – Alan Watts
“This is the real secret of life — to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.” – Alan Watts
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“To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float.” – Alan Watts
“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” – Alan Watts
“Trying to define yourself is like trying to bite your own teeth.” – Alan Watts
Bonus Alan Watts Quote:
“You are a function of what the whole universe is doing in the same way that a wave is a function of what the whole ocean is doing.” – Alan Watts
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