Best Alan Watts books

The Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety

Alan W. Watts

Best price for this book: $ 9.5

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We live in an age of unprecedented anxiety. Spending all our time trying to anticipate and plan for the future and to lamenting the past, we forget to embrace the here and now. We are so concerned with tomorrow that we forget to enjoy today. Drawing from Eastern philosophy and religion, Alan Watts shows that it is only by acknowledging what we do not—and cannot—know that we can learn anything truly worth knowing. In The Wisdom of Insecurity, he shows us how, in order to lead a fulfilling life, we must embrace the present—and live fully in the now. Featuring an Introduction by Deepak Chopra.

The Book: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are

Alan Watts

Best price for this book: $ 5.98

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In The Book, Alan Watts provides us with a much-needed answer to the problem of personal identity, distilling and adapting the Hindu philosophy of Vedanta.

At the root of human conflict is our fundamental misunderstanding of who we are. The illusion that we are isolated beings, unconnected to the rest of the universe, has led us to view the “outside” world with hostility, and has fueled our misuse of technology and our violent and hostile subjugation of the natural world. To help us understand that the self is in fact the root and ground of the universe, Watts has crafted a revelatory primer on what it means to be human—and a mind-opening manual of initiation into the central mystery of existence.

The Way of Zen

Alan W. Watts

Best price for this book: $ 6.71

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In his definitive introduction to Zen Buddhism, Alan Watts explains the principles and practices of this ancient religion to Western readers. With a rare combination of freshness and lucidity, he delves into the origins and history of Zen to explain what it means for the world today with incredible clarity. Watts saw Zen as “one of the most precious gifts of Asia to the world,” and in The Way of Zen he gives this gift to readers everywhere.

Become What You Are

Alan W. Watts

Best price for this book: $ 8.06

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"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. . . . You may believe yourself out of harmony with life and its eternal Now; but you cannot be, for you are life and exist Now."—from Become What You Are



In this collection of writings, including nine new chapters never before available in book form, Watts displays the intelligence, playfulness of thought, and simplicity of language that has made him so perennially popular as an interpreter of Eastern thought for Westerners. He draws on a variety of religious traditions, and covers topics such as the challenge of seeing one's life "just as it is," the Taoist approach to harmonious living, the limits of language in the face of ineffable spiritual truth, and the psychological symbolism of Christian thought.

Out of Your Mind: Tricksters, Interdependence, and the Cosmic Game of Hide and Seek

Alan Watts

Best price for this book: $ 10.92

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In order to come to your senses, Alan Watts often said, you sometimes need to go out of your mind. Perhaps more than any other teacher in the West, this celebrated author, former Anglican priest, and self-described spiritual entertainer was responsible for igniting the passion of countless wisdom seekers to the spiritual and philosophical delights of India, China, and Japan.
 
With Out of Your Mind, you are invited to immerse yourself in six of this legendary thinker's most engaging teachings on how to break through the limits of the rational mind and expand your awareness and appreciation for the great game unfolding all around us. Distilled from Alan Watts’s pinnacle lectures, Out of Your Mind brings you an inspiring new resource that captures the true scope of this brilliant teacher in action.
 
For those both new and familiar with Watts, this book invites us to delve into his favorite pathways out of the trap of conventional awareness, including:
 
• The art of the “controlled accident”—what happens when you stop taking your life so seriously and start enjoying it with complete sincerity
 
• How we come to believe “the myth of myself”—that we are skin-encapsulated egos separate from the world around us—and how to transcend that illusion
 
• Why we must fully embrace chaos and the void to find our deepest purpose
 
• Unconventional and refreshing insights into the deeper principles of Buddhism, Hinduism, Western philosophy, Christianity, and much more

Nature, Man and Woman

Alan W. Watts

Best price for this book: $ 7.97

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In Nature, Man and Woman, philosopher Alan Watts reexamines humanity’s place in the natural world—and the relation between body and spirit—in the light of Chinese Taoism.  Western thought and culture have coalesced around a series of constructed ideas—that human beings stand separate from a nature that must be controlled; that the mind is somehow superior to the body; that all sexuality entails a seduction—that  in some way underlie our exploitation of the earth, our distrust of emotion, and our loneliness and reluctance to love. Here, Watts fundamentally challenges these assumptions, drawing on the precepts of Taoism to present an alternative vision of man and the universe—one in which the distinctions between self and other, spirit and matter give way to a more holistic way of seeing.

This Is It: and Other Essays on Zen and Spiritual Experience

Alan W. Watts

Best price for this book: $ 5.3

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Six revolutionary essays exploring the relationship between spiritual experience and ordinary life—and the need for them to coexist within each of us.

With essays on “cosmic consciousness” (including Alan Watts’ account of his own ventures into this inward realm); the paradoxes of self-consciousness; LSD and consciousness; and the false opposition of spirit and matter, This Is It and Other Essays on Zen and Spiritual Experience is a truly mind-opening collection.

Tao: The Watercourse Way

Alan Watts

Best price for this book: $ 9.91

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Drawing on ancient and modern sources, Watts treats the Chinese philosophy of Tao in much the same way as he did Zen Buddhism in his classic The Way of Zen. Critics agree that this last work stands as a perfect monument to the life and literature of Alan Watts.

Does It Matter?: Essays on Man's Relation to Materiality

Alan Watts

Best price for this book: $ 9.28

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This is a series of essays representing philosopher Alan Watts's most recent thinking on the astonishing problems of man's relations to his material environment. The basic theme is that civilized man confuses symbol with reality, his ways of describing and measuring the world with the world itself, and thus puts himself into the absurd situation of preferring money to wealth and eating the menu instead of the dinner.

Thus, with his attention locked upon numbers and concepts, man is increasingly unconscious of nature and of his total dependence upon air, water, plants, animals, insects, and bacteria. He has been hallucinated into the notion that the so-called "external" world is a cluster of "objects" separate from himself, that he "encounters" it, that he comes into it instead of out of it. Consequently, our species is fouling its own nest and is in imminent danger of self-obliteration.

Here, a philosopher whose works have been mainly concerned with mysticism and Oriental philosophy gets down to the "nitty-gritty" problems of economics, technology, clothing, cooking, and housing.

The Joyous Cosmology: Adventures in the Chemistry of Consciousness

Alan Watts

Best price for this book: $ 8.29

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A classic account of the psychedelic experience

The Joyous Cosmology is Alan Watts’s exploration of the insight that the consciousness-changing drugs LSD, mescaline, and psilocybin can facilitate “when accompanied with sustained philosophical reflection by a person who is in search, not of kicks, but of understanding.” More than an artifact, it is both a riveting memoir of Watts’s personal experiments and a profound meditation on our perennial questions about the nature of existence and the existence of the sacred.

Includes Watts’s article “Psychedelics and Religious Experience”