Monday, March 25, 2019

Alan Watts: Why money rules our lives

Alan Watts, TheSpiritualLibrary, July 9, 2014; Dhr. Seven, Ellie Askew, Wisdom Quarterly

Who was Alan Watts?
Alan Watts ( was born in London in January of 1915 at the start of World War I. At a young age he became fascinated with the philosophy and arts of the Far East. And by the time he was 10 or 11 he began to read thriller stories by Sax Rohmer about about mysterious "Oriental" villains.
What's in your wallet, spiritual person?
This interest led him in turn to the works of Lafcadio Hern, Christmas Humphreys, and DT Suzuki, and by 14 he was writing on Eastern themes. He was published in the Journal of the London Buddhist Lodge before producing his first booklet on Zen Buddhism in 1932.
He moved to New York in 1938 and then to Chicago, where he served as an Episcopal priest for six years before leaving the Anglican Church.

In 1950 he moved to Upstate New York. In late 1950 he visited with mythologist Joseph Campbell, composer John Cage, and Luisa Commaraswamy at his Millbrook farmhouse.
Then in 1951 at the invitation of Frederic Spiegelberg he moved to San Francisco to teach at the Academy of Asian Studies.
Spiritual entertainer Alan Watts was profoundly influenced by the East Indian philosophies of Vedanta, Buddhism, and Taoism, which is reflected in Zen poetry and the arts of China and Japan.
After leaving the Church he never became a member of another organized religion, although he wrote and spoke extensively on Zen Buddhism, Hinduism, and Taoism.
Some American Buddhists criticized him for not sitting regularly in zazen, even though he recorded several guided meditations teaching a variety of mediation techniques. Watts responded simply by saying: "A cat sits until it is done sitting, and then gets up, stretches, and walks away."

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