The Universe is part of the Extended Seminars Collection. Alan discusses the ways in which the universe is an on/offing system that generates worlds, peoples, and consciousness as a way of knowing itself.
00:05 This morning I was giving you a talk on the fundamental basic attitudes expressed in Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching. And the title of the book, “Tao Te Ching,” introduces now the second...
Part 1 00:00 The philosophy of the Tao is one of the two great principal components of Chinese thought. There are, of course, quite a number of forms of Chinese philosophy, but there are two...
The Houseboat Summit
An extended conversation between Alan Watts, Timothy Leary, Allen Ginsberg, and Gary Snyder on the problem of whether to “drop out or take over,” conducted on Alan Watts’ houseboat in 1967.
One of Alan’s most popular seminars, and for good reason—in The Joker, listeners will find out why every society needs fools in order to remind itself not to take life so damn seriously.
The Joyous Cosmology
What kind of a theory of the universe would it take for us to willingly accept the pain, turmoil, chaos, heartbreak, and suffering that comes with the state of being a consciously aware and individuated Self?
The Joyous Cosmology: Adventures in the Chemistry of Consciousness
The Joyous Cosmology is Alan Watts’ 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 Alan’s personal experiments and a profound meditation on our perennial questions about the nature of existence and the existence of the sacred.
The Myopic View of the World (We as Organism)
Alan Watts argues that we spend most of our life in a sort of myopia; that is, only perceiving a microscopic subsection of the reality which we occupy. By mentally “zooming out,” humans can begin to see (and enjoy) the marvelous universal dance that has been unfolding since the Big Bang—and which now expresses itself in and through us at this very moment.
The Problem with Christianity
00:00 —by giving a brief résumé of the second session that was held yesterday afternoon. As you remember, I had started out in the very beginning of the seminar to give you an...
The Psychedelic Experience
Part 1 Consciousness-Altering Medicine 00:00 Almost all the great religions of the world are in some way associated with a drink. Judaism and Christianity with wine, Islam with...
The Psychedelic Explosion
Alan talks about the upcoming revolution in which Western society will have to come to grips with the existence of the psychedelic/mystical experience, and how to integrate it into our culture in a productive, fulfilling, and responsible manner. Included are personal recollections of DMT and LSD trips experienced by Watts himself, why the utilization of psychedelic drugs should be seen as a tool, his vision of a psychedelic campus for guided mystical experiences, and why prohibition is doomed to failure.
The Symbolic and the Real
00:01 I’m talking about the symbolic and the real, and from the very beginning I have to make it clear what I mean by these words. I think one of the very best illustrations of the...
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 1)
Alan Watts explains the sense in nonsense and how to enjoy the playfulness of life while sincerely participating in the human game.
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 2)
Alan Watts explains that how we define the borders of our self determines our relationship to the environment and our role in the universe.
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 3)
Alan Watts talks on the impact of various models of the ultimate reality, and the contrasts between male and female symbolism.
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 4)
Alan Watts explains how we are not born into this world, but grow out of it; for in the same way an apple tree apples, the Earth peoples.
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 5)
In a talk given to the IBM Systems Group, Alan Watts describes the wiggly world of nature and the net we cast over it.
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 6)
Highlights from the “The Love of Wisdom” radio series by Alan Watts
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 7)
00:00 Tonight, at any rate, we’ve got to go through some theoretical materials, so we’re on a head trip. I don’t know where the trip will end up; it depends on you. But in order to...
The Tao of Philosophy (Part 8)
Alan Watts explains how language helps to construct reality, and what to do about it. He then follows up with the challenges of expressing the ineffable.
The Veil of Thoughts (Parts 1-4)
Alan describes the ways in which we have concealed truth behind a veil of thoughts. He talks about how and why we mistake symbols for reality, argues that civilization may be a misguided experiment, offers observations about the way in which abstractions have become more powerful than the realities they are referencing, and explains how we can become “unbamboozled” from these ways of thinking.