Alan Watts on Human Culture

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An insightful look into the modern culture of our world with original audio by Alan Watts (1915 – 1973), the British philosopher, writer and speaker.

In Books I Have Loved, Osho speaks about two of Alan Watt’s books:

[…] Fifth, I am going to include another man, Alan Watts, with all his books. I have loved this man immensely. I have loved Buddha for different reasons; I have loved Solomon for a different reason. They are enlightened, Alan Watts is not. He is an American… not a born American, that’s his only hope; he just emigrated there. But he has written tremendously valuable books. The Way of Zen should be counted as one of the most important; This Is It is a tremendous work of beauty and understanding – and from a man who is yet unenlightened; hence it is more appreciable.

When you are enlightened, whatsoever you say is beautiful; it has to be. But when you are not enlightened and groping in the dark, and yet can find a small window of light, that’s tremendous, fantastic. Alan Watts was a drunkard, but still he was very close.

He was once an ordained Christian priest – what a misfortune! – but he renounced it. Very few people have the guts to renounce the priesthood, because it provides so many things of the world. He renounced all that and became almost a hobo. But what a hobo! – it reminds one of Bodhidharma, Basho, or Rinzai. Alan Watts cannot remain long without becoming a buddha. He died long ago; by this time he must be leaving school… must be ready to come to me! I am waiting for all these people. Alan Watts is one of them – I am waiting for him.
Osho, Books I Have Loved, Ch 19 (excerpt)


[…] Eleventh, and the last – Alan Watts’ The Book; I have been saving it. Alan Watts was not a buddha, but he could be one day. He has moved closer to it. The Book is tremendously important. It is his testament, his whole experience with Zen masters, Zen classics. And he is a man of tremendous intelligence; he was also a drunkard. Intelligence plus wine have really created a juicy book. I have loved The Book and I have saved it for the last.

Do you remember Jesus’ saying, “Blessed are those who stand at the last”? Yes, this book is blessed. I bless it, and I would like this series of sessions to be in memory of Alan Watts.
Osho, Books I Have Loved, Ch 16 (excerpt)

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