Alan Watts was a world-renowned philosopher, author and speaker, widely known for interpretation of the cultures and beliefs of the East with the way we live in the West. Alan wrote about 25 books along with his bestseller “The Way to Zen”. During the twilight of his life, he divided his time between a cabin on Mount Tamalpais and a houseboat in Sausalito.
These Alan Watts quotes express some of his most important works and philosophies regarding a happy and fulfilled life. It is highly recommended to analyze these quotes and absorbing their wisdom.
Here are some of the best quotes by Voltaire you must check once.
1. “We cannot be more sensitive to pleasure without being more sensitive to pain.”
2. Every individual is a unique manifestation of the Whole, as every branch is a particular outreaching of the tree.”
3. “There will always be suffering. But we must not suffer over the suffering.”
4. “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….”
5. “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”
6. “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.”
7. “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.”
8. “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.”
9.“If you really understand Zen… you can use any book. You could use the Bible. You could use Alice in Wonderland. You could use the dictionary, because… the sound of the rain needs no translation.”
10. “No valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now. I have realized that the past and future are real illusions, that they exist in the present, which is what there is and all there is.”
11. “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.”
12. There is always something taboo, something repressed, un-admitted, or just glimpsed quickly out of the corner of one’s eye because a direct look is too unsettling. Taboos lie within taboos, like the skin of an onion.”
13. “Try to imagine what it will be like to go to sleep and never wake up… now try to imagine what it was like to wake up having never gone to sleep.”
14. “The sense of wrong is simply failure to see where something fits into a pattern, to be confused as to the hierarchical level upon which an event belongs.”
15. “Meditation is the discovery that the point of life is always arrived at in the immediate moment.”
16. Only words and conventions can isolate us from the entirely undefinable something which is everything.”
17. “The only Zen you’ll find on mountain tops is the Zen you bring up there with you.”
18. “You didn’t come into this world. You came out of it, like a wave from the ocean. You are not a stranger here.”
19. “Life and love generate effort, but effort will not generate them. Faith in life, in other people, and in oneself, is the attitude of allowing the spontaneous to be spontaneous, in its own way and in its own time.”
20. “The more we struggle for life (as pleasure), the more we are actually killing what we love.”
21. “Everyone has love, but it can only come out when he is convinced of the impossibility and the frustration of trying to love himself.”
22. To be free from convention is not to spurn it but not to be deceived by it.”
23. “Parts exist only for purposes of figuring and describing, and as we figure the world out we become confused if we do not remember this all the time.”
24. 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.
25. The more a thing tends to be permanent, the more it tends to be lifeless.
26. “Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.”
27. “There is no formula for generating the authentic warmth of love. It cannot be copied.”
28. A scholar tries to learn something everyday; a student of Buddhism tries to unlearn something daily.
29. “We do not “come into” this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean “waves,” the universe “peoples.””
30. “There was never a time when the world began, because it goes round and round like a circle, and there is no place on a circle where it begins. Look at my watch, which tells the time; it goes round, and so the world repeats itself again and again.”
31. “Total situations are, therefore, patterns in time as much as patterns in space.”
32. Never pretend to a love which you do not actually feel, for love is not ours to command.
33. “If you say that getting the money is the most important thing, you’ll spend your life completely wasting your time. You’ll be doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living, that is to go on doing things you don’t like doing, which is stupid.”
34. “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.”
35. “Problems that remain persistently insoluble should always be suspected as questions asked in the wrong way.”
36. “What the devil is the point of surviving, going on living, when it’s a drag? But you see, that’s what people do.”
37. “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.”
38. “But the attitude of faith is to let go, and become open to truth, whatever it might turn out to be.”
39. “The menu is not the meal.”
40. “You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are. 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.”
41. “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.”
42. “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.”
43. “Philosophy is man’s expression of curiosity about everything and his attempt to make sense of the world primarily through his intellect.”
44. “You and I are all as much continuous with the physical universe as a wave is continuous with the ocean.”
45. “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.”
46. “The greater part of human activity is designed to make permanent those experiences and joys which are only lovable because they are changing.”
47. “How is it possible that a being with such sensitive jewels as the eyes, such enchanted musical instruments as the ears, and such fabulous arabesque of nerves as the brain can experience itself anything less than a god.”
48. Tomorrow and plans for tomorrow can have no significance at all unless you are in full contact with the reality of the present, since it is in the present and only in the present that you live. There is no other reality than present reality, so that, even if one were to live for endless ages, to live for the future would be to miss the point everlastingly.
49. Trying to define yourself is like trying to bite your own teeth.
50. Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.
So here is the list of the best quotes from Alan Watts. I have covered most of the quotes in the best way possible. If you have more suggestions, feel free to contact us and we will definitely prioritise your suggestion.
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