Alan Watts Quotes: Random 50 Alan Watts Quotes to Ponder

For a decision-the freest of my actions just happens like hiccups inside me or like a bird singing outside me.

- Alan Watts

If we cling to belief in God, we cannot likewise have faith, since faith is not clinging but letting go.

- Alan Watts

Increasingly, we're developing all kinds of systems for verifying reality by echoing it.

- Alan Watts

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.

- Alan Watts

We are at the moment looking at space as something to be entered by the tremendous thrust of a rocket because that is the attitude of attacking the unknown. And that causes us not to realize that we are already on the most magnificently equipped spaceship, which could hardly be improved upon. It has got a source of temperature and energy just at the right distance from it. It's beautifully equipped with oxygen, with food supplies, with all kinds of delightful things to do while on the journey.... and it's traveling through space at a colossal speed... and it's called the planet Earth.

- Alan Watts

Your body does not eliminate poisons by knowing their names. To try to control fear or depression or boredom by calling them names is to resort to superstition of trust in curses and invocations. It is so easy to see why this does not work. Obviously, we try to know, name, and define fear in order to make it “objective,” that is, separate from “I.

- Alan Watts

But at any rate, the point is that God is what nobody admits to being, and everybody really is.

- Alan Watts

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.

- Alan Watts

There is nothing at all that can be talked about adequately, and the whole art of poetry is to say what can't be said.

- Alan Watts

The truth is revealed by removing things that stand in its light, an art not unlike sculpture, in which the artist creates, not by building, but by hacking away.

- Alan Watts

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.

- Alan Watts

Everything is perpetually becoming new.

- Alan Watts

Hurrying and delaying are alike ways of trying to resist the present.

- Alan Watts

Wars based on principle are far more destructive... the attacker will not destroy that which he is after.

- Alan Watts

To be silent is not to lose your tongue. On the contrary, it is only through silence that one can discover something new to talk about. One who talked incessantly, without stopping to look and listen, would repeat himself ad nauseam.

- Alan Watts

Don't hurry anything. Don't worry about the future. Don't worry about what progress you're making. Just be entirely content to be aware of what is.

- Alan Watts

It's so important to consider this question: What do I desire?

- Alan Watts

For the perfect accomplishment of any art, you must get this feeling of the eternal present into your bones - for it is the secret of proper timing. No rush. No dawdle. Just the sense of flowing with the course of events in the same way that you dance to music, neither trying to outpace it nor lagging behind. Hurrying and delaying are alike ways of trying to resist the present.

- Alan Watts

The destination of life is this eternal moment.

- Alan Watts

You know that if you get in the water and have nothing to hold on to, but try to behave as you would on dry land, you will drown. But if, on the other hand, you trust yourself to the water and let go, you will float. And this is exactly the situation of faith.

- Alan Watts

You don't need to try to be God, you are! But if you try to be God it means you don't know you are.

- Alan Watts

Once you've learned to think you can't stop. And an enormous number of people devote their lives to keeping their minds busy and feel extremely uncomfortable with silence.

- Alan Watts

For every individual is a unique manifestation of the Whole, as every branch is a particular outreaching of the tree. To manifest individuality, every branch must have a sensitive connection with the tree, just as our independently moving and differentiated fingers must have a sensitive connection with the whole body. The point, which can hardly be repeated too often, is that differentiation is not separation.

- Alan Watts

In Zen, poverty is voluntary, and considered not really as poverty so much as simplicity, freedom, unclutteredness.

- Alan Watts

To look at life without words is not to lose the ability to form words- to think, remember, and plan. To be silent is not to lose your tongue. On the contrary, it is only through silence that one can discover something new to talk about. One who talked incessantly, without stopping to look and listen, would repeat himself ad nauseam. It is the same with thinking, which is really silent talking. It is not, by itself, open to the discovery of anything new, for its only novelties are simply arrangements of old words and ideas.

- Alan Watts

You are that vast thing that you see far, far off with great telescopes.

- Alan Watts

If we want justice for minorities and cooled wars with our natural enemies, whether human or non-human, we must first come to terms with the minority and the enemy in ourselves and in our own hearts, for the rascal is there as much as anywhere in the "external" world - -especially when you realize that the world outside your skin is as much yourself as the world inside.

- Alan Watts

People sometimes fail to live because they are always preparing to live.

- Alan Watts

No amount of anxiety makes any difference to anything that is going to happen.

- Alan Watts

Philosophers, for example, often fail to recognize that their remarks about the universe apply also to themselves and their remarks. If the universe is meaningless, so is the statement that it is so.

- Alan Watts

A living body is not a fixed thing, but a flowing event, like a flame or a whirlpool.

- Alan Watts

Nothing satisfies an individual incapable of enjoyment.

- Alan Watts

The real you is not a puppet that life pushes around, the real deep down you is the whole universe.

- Alan Watts

Our pleasures are not material pleasures, but symbols of pleasure — attractively packaged but inferior in content.

- Alan Watts

Just as the ocean is waving so each one of us is a waving of the whole cosmos, the entire works, all there is.

- Alan Watts

When you really understand that you are what you see and know, you do not run around the countryside thinking, "I am all this!" There is simply all this.

- Alan Watts

By replacing fear of the unknown with curiosity we open ourselves up to an infinite stream of possibility. We can let fear rule our lives or we can become childlike with curiosity, pushing our boundaries, leaping out of our comfort zones, and accepting what life puts before us.

- Alan Watts

We feel that our actions are voluntary when they follow a decision and involuntary when they happen without decision. But if a decision itself were voluntary every decision would have to be preceded by a decision to decide - An infinite regression which fortunately does not occur. Oddly enough, if we had to decide to decide, we would not be free to decide

- Alan Watts

The difference between a baby and adult is that a baby believes in everything while the adult doubts everything. Babies also only tell the truth until they learn what a lie is.

- Alan Watts

But my dear man, reality is only a Rorschach ink-blot, you know.

- Alan Watts

...mysticism and empiricism go together in opposition to scholasticism...they base themselves on the non-linear world of experience rather than the linear world of letters.

- Alan Watts

It is hard indeed to notice anything for which the languages available to us have no description.

- Alan Watts

The meaning and purpose of dancing is the dance. Like music also, it is fulfilled in each moment of its course. You do not play a sonata in order to reach the final chord, and if the meaning of things were simply in ends, composers would write nothing but finales.

- Alan Watts

I can only think seriously of trying to live up to an ideal, to improve myself, if I am split in two pieces. There must be a good “I” who is going to improve the bad “me.” “I,” who has the best intentions, will go to work on wayward “me,” and the tussle between the two will very much stress the difference between them. Consequently “I” will feel more separate than ever, and so merely increase the lonely and cut-off feelings which make “me” behave so badly.

- Alan Watts

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.

- Alan Watts

There is no way of making a hedge grow like pruning it. There is no way of making sex interesting like repressing it.

- Alan Watts

However much I may be impressed by the difference between a star and the dark space around it, I must not forget that I can see the two only in relation to each other, and that this relation is inseparable.

- Alan Watts

Sex is no longer a serious taboo. Teenagers sometimes know more about it than adults.

- Alan Watts

When we attempt to exercise power or control over someone else, we cannot avoid giving that person the very same power or control over us.

- Alan Watts

Of course, you can’t force your mind to be silent. That would be like trying to smooth ripples in water with a flatiron. Water becomes clear and calm only when left alone.

- Alan Watts