Alan Watts Quotes

Trying to define yourself is like trying to bite your own teeth.
Alan Watts (Life Magazine, 1961)
You are this universe and you are creating it in every moment.
Alan Watts
Nothing fails like success.
Alan Watts (The Book on Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are, 1966)
What would it be like to go to sleep and never wake up?
Alan Watts
There is no formula for generating the authentic warmth of love. It cannot be copied.
Alan Watts (The Wisdom of Insecurity, 1951)
You don't look out there for God, something in the sky, you look in you.
Alan Watts
Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.
Alan Watts
Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.
Alan Watts
You are an aperture through which the universe is looking at and exploring itself.
Alan Watts
The most frightening thing about death is that there might be something beyond it, and you dont know what it is.
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
Problems that remain persistently insoluble should always be suspected as questions asked in the wrong way.
Alan Watts (The Book on Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are, 1966)
Everybody is fundamentally the ultimate reality. Not God in a politically kingly sense, but God in the sense of being the self, the deep-down basic whatever there is.
Alan Watts (The Nature of Consciousness, 1989)
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
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
It must be obvious... that there is a contradiction in wanting to be perfectly secure in a universe whose very nature is momentariness and fluidity.
Alan Watts (The Wisdom of Insecurity, 1951)
A person who thinks all the time has nothing to think about except thoughts. So he loses touch with reality, and lives in a world of illusion.
Alan Watts
But I'll tell you what hermits realize. If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you'll come to understand that you're connected with everything.
Alan Watts
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
Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe. This fact is rarely, if ever, experienced by most individuals.
Alan Watts (The Book on Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are, 1966)
The reason why certain people turn to philosophy, why I became a philosopher, since I was a little boy, I always felt that existence as such was weird.  I mean, here we are.  Isn’t that odd?
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
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
Wonder is not a disease. Wonder, and its expression in poetry and the arts, are among the most important things which seem to distinguish men from other animals, and intelligent and sensitive people from morons.
Alan Watts (The Book on Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are, 1966)
Life is like music for its own sake. We are living in an eternal now, and when we listen to music we are not listening to the past, we are not listening to the future, we are listening to an expanded present.
Alan Watts
We do not "come into" this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean "waves," the universe "peoples." Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe.
Alan Watts
We seldom realize, for example that our most private thoughts and emotions are not actually our own. For we think in terms of languages and images which we did not invent, but which were given to us by our society.
Alan Watts
That we are no longer this poor little stranger and afraid in a world it never made. But that you are this universe and you are creating it in every moment... Because you see it starts now, it didn't begin in the past, there was no past. See, if the universe began in the past when that happened it was now; see, but it's still now — and the universe is still beginning now, and it's trailing off like the wake of a ship from now, and that wake fades out so does the past. You can look back there to explain things, but the explanation disappears. You'll never find it there... Things are not explained by the past, they are explained by what Happens Now. That Creates the past, and it begins here... That's the birth of responsibility...
Alan Watts
What is it! This thing, this happening, called existence? You ask that question long enough, and it suddenly hits you, that if you could answer it, you wouldn't know what terms to put the answer in. We classify, always, to give an answer to the question, what is it? And when you classify, you distinguish. An inside group from an outside group. But so what we want to know is what is the group of all groups? Well we can't imagine what the outside would be, so we can't answer the question. What is it?
Alan Watts
What you are basically, deep, deep down, far, far in, is simply the fabric and structure of existence itself. So, say in Hindu mythology, they say that the world is the drama of God. God is not something in Hindu mythology with a white beard that sits on a throne, that has royal perogatives. God in Indian mythology is the self, Satcitananda. Which means sat, that which is, chit, that which is consciousness; that which is ananda is bliss. In other words, what exists, reality itself is gorgeous, it is the fullness of total joy.
Alan Watts (The Nature of Consciousness, 1989)

Alan Watts Biography

Born: Janaury 6th, 1915
Died: November 16, 1973

Alan Watts was a British philosopher, author and speaker. He is best known for his work and lifelong dedication to the study of Eastern philosophy.

Notable Works

The Supreme Identity (1950)
The Wisdom of Insecurity (1951)
The New Alchemy (1958)
The Art of Contemplation (1972)

Featured Idea: Change

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