Alan Watts is more than just a British philosopher. He was an author, a poet, a radical thinker, a mystic, an ex priest, and a teacher.
Having explored spirituality through studying Buddhism, Christianity, and Hinduism, he came into terms with his own spirituality.
He was able to step back from the drama that entangled the human soul and understood the cosmic humor of it all, dubbing himself a philosophical entertainer.
He was also considered a philosophical legend for introducing Eastern wisdom to the Western audience.
His great works reflected his passionate spirit and are still in high demand today.
Below are some of his famous quotes that don’t need any elaboration because they speak directly to the reader’s soul. They are probably the truest thing you’ll read today!
The 15 Most Conscious Lessons From Alan Watts:
1. The infinite moment.
“Life exists only at this very moment, and in this moment it is infinite and eternal, for the present moment is infinitely small; before we can measure it, it has gone, and yet it exists forever…”
2. Things are as they are.
“Things are as they are. Looking out into it The Universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.”
3. Reality is stranger than fiction.
“When you get free from certain fixed concepts of the way the world is, you find it is far more subtle, and far more miraculous, than you thought it was.”
4. You are as extraordinary as you are.
“What I am really saying is that you don’t need to do anything, because if you see yourself in the correct way, you are all as much extraordinary phenomenon of nature as trees, clouds, the patterns in running water, the flickering of fire, the arrangement of the stars, and the form of a galaxy. You are all just like that, and there is nothing wrong with you at all.”
5. Security and insecurity are one and the same.
“To put is still more plainly: the desire for security and the feeling of insecurity are the same thing. To hold your breath is to lose your breath. A society based on the quest for security is nothing but a breath retention contest in which everyone is as taut as a drum and as purple as a beet.”
6. Perpetual transmutation is necessary.
“Without birth and death, and without the perpetual transmutation of all the forms of life, the world would be static, rhythm less, undancing, mummified.”
7. Real religion is transforming anxiety into laughter.
“A priest once quoted to me the Roman saying that a religion is dead when the priests laugh at each other across the altar. I always laugh at the altar, be it Christian, Hindu, or Buddhist, because real religion is the transformation of anxiety into laughter.”
8. Faith is not holding on.
“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.”
9. The same consciousness governs us all.
“When I meet you, I see not just what you define yourself as Mr so and so, Ms so and so, Mrs so and so, I see every one of you as the primordial energy of The Universe coming on at me in this particular way. I know I’m that, too. But we’ve learned to define ourselves as separate from it.”
10. Beliefs are not actually our own.
“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.”
11. Allow things to settle.
“Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.”
12. Live in the now.
“No work or love will flourish out of guilt, fear, or hollowness of heart, just as no valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now.”
13. We come out of this world.
“We do not “come into” 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. This fact is rarely, if ever, experienced by most individuals. Even those who know it to be true in theory do not sense or feel it, but continue to be aware of themselves as isolated “egos” inside bags of skin.”
14. Look within for divinity.
“You don’t look out there for God, something in the sky, you look in you.”
15. The most dangerous sanity.
“No one is more dangerously insane than one who is sane all the time: he is like a steel bridge without flexibility, and the order of his life is rigid and brittle.”