~~June 4, 2014~~
Alan Wilson Watts (January 6, 1915 — November 16, 1973) was a British philosopher, writer, and speaker, best known as an interpreter and popularizer of Eastern philosophy for a Western audience.
He wrote more than 25 books and numerous articles on subjects such as personal identity, the true nature of reality, higher consciousness, meaning of life, concepts and images of God and the non-material pursuit of happiness. In his books he relates his experience to scientific knowledge and to the teachings of Eastern and Western religion, spirituality and philosophy.
In 1957 when 42, Watts published one of his best known books, The Way of Zen, which focused on philosophical explication and history. Besides drawing on the lifestyle and philosophical background of Zen, in India and China, Watts introduced ideas drawn from general semantics (directly from the writings of Alfred Korzybski and also from Norbert Wiener’s early work on cybernetics, which had recently been published). Watts offered analogies from cybernetic principles possibly applicable to the Zen life. The book sold well, eventually becoming a modern classic, and helped widen his lecture circuit.
In his mature work, he presents himself as “Zennist” in spirit as he wrote in his last book, Tao: The Watercourse Way. Child rearing, the arts, cuisine, education, law and freedom, architecture, sexuality, and the uses and abuses of technology were all of great interest to him.
In looking at social issues he was quite concerned with the necessity for international peace, for tolerance and understanding among disparate cultures. He also came to feel acutely conscious of a growing ecological predicament; as one instance, in the early 1960s he wrote: “Can any melting or burning imaginable get rid of these ever-rising mountains of ruin — especially when the things we make and build are beginning to look more and more like rubbish even before they are thrown away?”
Watts felt that absolute morality had nothing to do with the fundamental realization of one’s deep spiritual identity. He advocated social rather than personal ethics. In his writings, Watts was increasingly concerned with ethics applied to relations between humanity and the natural environment and between governments and citizens. He wrote out of an appreciation of a racially and culturally diverse social landscape.
Since the inception of alanwattspodcasts.com by his son Mark Watts, and the success of internet based user-generated videos, many of Alan’s audio contents have been made into videos.
As part of his growing popularity, Matt Stone and Trey Parker—creators of the animated series South Park—have also contributed a video tribute by animating some of his lectures. This has spawned a culture of many hundreds of user animated videos all around the net.
In October 1973, Watts returned from an exhausting European lecture tour. He died of heart failure in his sleep at his home on Mt. Tamalpais the following month, at the age of 58.
~~Alan Watts – The Problem of Life~~
~~Uploaded on Aug 28, 2010~~
We ALL are connected through the UNIVERSE!!
We ALL are ONE!!