Alan Watts Organization
The Alan Watts Organization is dedicated to preserving Alan’s legacy through archival efforts and creative partnerships. Our goal is to make his work accessible digitally as well as through traditional media, and to help spread his message to future generations.
Alan Wilson Watts was a scholar and philosopher (amongst many other things) who was a very adept “translator” of Eastern wisdom for a Western audience. His ideas about the cosmos and the individual, Taoism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Judaism, and other religions, philosophies, and psychologies, and everyday life were at once deeply profound, yet entirely approachable by non-scholars and scholars alike. Find out more about him HERE.
You may have met us before, perhaps under a slightly different name, i.e. The Alan Watts Electronic University, the Alan Watts Center, or the Alan Watts Project. We are always trying new ways to connect with a wider audience and are happy to welcome your help!
Mark & Alan Watts looking at a show poster. – 1965
We are a five member organization based in the San Francisco Bay area with a very important task on our hands. For the last 45 years, in some form or another, the Alan Watts Organization has been devoted to maintaining and disseminating the work of Alan Watts. Under the guidance of Alan’s son (owner and archivist of Alan’s recorded materials), Mark Watts, we distribute and provide avenues to interact with the recorded works of Alan Watts. If you heard his voice on a Netflix show, or a movie like Her or Zen Dog, if you thought you heard him on a Volvo commercial, or as the narration on the game Everything, or in a giant pyramid in the old port of Montreal, or somewhere else… We were lucky enough to help curate audio for that.
The no less glamorous aspects of our endeavor includes continued archiving of the original media, digitization, categorization, mastering, restoring, and curating the source material, as well as a host of other editorial and creative tasks. We provide access to the recorded works and are continuously working to make these works accessible to wider audiences through innovative distribution efforts.
Mark Watts browsing the Alan Watts Archives. – 2017
Given the hundreds of hours of media (originally recorded on lacquered disks and magnetic reels), the archival/digitization effort is a substantial undertaking. Alan was not only a prolific speaker, but with the guidance of his son, Mark Watts and close friend and audio genius Henry “Sandy” Jacobs, he became a diligent recorder of his work. There are hundreds of hours of Alan speaking that the public has never heard unless they were present at the recording or the mastering.
Since the founding of the Electronic University in 1973, the task of maintaining and distributing these recorded works has been carried on in some form or another; with the resurgence of interest in Alan’s work over the past few years, this has proven more important than ever.
Alan’s NAGRA. – 2017
The efforts of the Organization will make Alan’s invaluable work more accessible through the development of transcripts of the audio and freely available samples of recordings (via YouTube).
We are hard at work establishing a trusted repository of the current digitized works of Alan Watts, and will continue the digitization efforts of never before heard audio as time and funding permits. As we finalize the archiving efforts, we will also be actively participating in the furtherance of the philosophy and playfulness Alan was such a strong believer in.