The Real You ?

Who are you really? An amazing lecture was given by Alan Watts.

Alan Wilson Watts (6 January 1915 – 16 November 1973) was a British philosopher, writer, and speaker, best known as an interpreter and populariser of Eastern philosophy for a Western audience. Born in Chislehurst, England, he moved to the United States in 1938 and began Zen training in New York. Pursuing a career, he attended Seabury-Western Theological Seminary, where he received a master's degree in theology. Watts became an Episcopal priest in 1945, then left the ministry in 1950 and moved to California, where he joined the faculty of the American Academy of Asian Studies.

I love Alan Watts. It made me come to the realization that we are no different than a tree growing out of the earth. The style in which we design our shelters and public spaces gives the illusion that it, and therefore we, is/are somehow "on top of" or "out side of" the "natural world", but our cities are just human ant hills.

All of human genetics (and hence all humans) share an origin and are literally made from the same fabric. If you choose to believe in consciousness that exists outside of this body, that is to say, life after death, then the implication of the quote is that all of these points of consciousness inhabiting these bodies are actually all just one unified conscious awareness.

Picture a big white ball of light; this is "Consciousness", like you might picture energy as a lightning bolt, or blue light traveling fast, think of consciousness in the same manner. This white ball is self aware and has a desire to experience, and learn, and grow, and not be alone. So it creates this reality and all these things inside of it, and it creates these beings that have the ability to not only observe, but reflect on, add to, and alter the creation itself; The white ball is not just the thing that created this, but the "stuff" that makes it up entirely. This includes you. Thus, we are one consciousness with the desire to experience this reality scenario from many angles at once, and the way it goes about doing it is by tricking itself to forget that it's all just him/her/it inside every other shell

Watts gained a large following in the San Francisco Bay Area while working as a volunteer programmer at KPFA, a Pacifica Radio station in Berkeley. Watts wrote more than 25 books and articles on subjects important to Eastern and Western religion, introducing the then-burgeoning youth culture to The Way of Zen (1957), one of the first bestselling books on Buddhism. In Psychotherapy East and West (1961), Watts proposed that Buddhism could be thought of as a form of psychotherapy and not a religion. He considered Nature, Man and Woman (1958) to be, "from a literary point of view—the best book I have ever written. He also explored human consciousness, in the essay "The New Alchemy" (1958), and in the book The Joyous Cosmology (1962).

Towards the end of his life, he divided his time between a houseboat in Sausalito and a cabin on Mount Tamalpais. Many of his books are now available in digital format and many of his recorded talks and lectures are available on the Internet. According to the critic Erik Davis, his "writings and recorded talks still shimmer with a profound and galvanizing lucidity.

Influences and first publication

Watts's fascination with the Zen (or Ch'an) tradition—beginning during the 1930s—developed because that tradition embodied the spiritual, interwoven with the practical, as exemplified in the subtitle of his Spirit of Zen: A Way of Life, Work, and Art in the Far East. "Work", "life", and "art" were not demoted due to a spiritual focus. In his writing, he referred to it as "the great Ch'an (or Zen) synthesis of Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism after 700 CE in China."Watts published his first book, The Spirit of Zen, in 1936. Two decades later, in The Way of Zen he disparaged The Spirit of Zen as a "popularisation of Suzuki's earlier works, and besides being very unscholarly it is in many respects out of date and misleading."

Watts married Eleanor Everett, whose mother Ruth Fuller Everett was involved with a traditional Zen Buddhist circle in New York. Ruth Fuller later married the Zen master (or "roshi"), Sokei-an Sasaki, who served as a sort of model and mentor to Watts, though he chose not to enter into a formal Zen training relationship with Sasaki. During these years, according to his later writings, Watts had another mystical experience while on a walk with his wife. In 1938 Watts and his wife left England to live in the United States. Watts became a United States citizen in 1943.

Thanks to Wikipedia: Alan Watts

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