Complete and total control over our life situation, now who wouldn’t want this? What if you were convinced that there is something greater our there, and you already have it. I present to you the teachings of philosophical entertainer, Alan Watts. This remarkable artist will ask some of today’s most sought ought philosophical questions while answering them with basic concepts. In exploring the answers, you will find a great sigh of relief as he converts Eastern philosophy for a Western audience.
Well who is this Alan Watts and what does he have to offer? This philosopher, speaker, and writer has been popularized for his studies in both Eastern and Western religions.1 He is able to captivate his audience by asking them simple questions such as “what is it that we truly desire”, and leaving you completely dumbfounded with this great internal dilemma. When you’re puzzled by the question of what you want are he will ask “well, who are you?” or “who is it that is asking?”. These are all questions a great deal of us might encounter over our course of life but rarely do we find answers that satisfy.
The question of “why do we suffer?” is not something new to us, but a thorn in all of our sides. Many religions and ancient philosophies will tell us “we suffer because we desire” in one way or another. To try and solve this problem most might ask “well, how do we stop desiring”. This is a popular problem in Buddhist philosophy with the given prescription known as the Noble Eightfold Path.2 To the common Western mind, most might think we would need to give up our lives and become monks to end the suffering, luckily we have Alan Watts who is here to reassure us that we are already on our way.
To further explore the idea of having total control of our lives, watch this talk. There are an array of talks and lectures like this one on Youtube. If your preference is reading, may I recommend the books: The Book, The Wisdom of Insecurity, and The Way of Zen. The journey has just begun.