Thread: Alan Watts

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    Alan Watts

    Hi folks, I have been doing a bit of reading on Zen Buddhism, and of course, Alan Watts is mentioned. I wonder what everyone's take is on him? I know he's rather controversial, but what do you think about his writings (not his substance use)?

  2. #2
    Hi Lise,

    I watched a couple of videos of the late Alan Watts and read something or other of his quite a number of years ago - and apart from the fact that he used psychedelics and was a known alcoholic, I remember at the time having the impression that he seemed like a phoney. I couldn't get my head around the idea of a supposed Buddhist "teacher" being addicted to alcohol.

    I've no other reflections apart from that, sorry I can't be more helpful.


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    Forums Member KathyLauren's Avatar
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    I know little about his lifestyle, and don't really care much about that: it is his karma.

    I found his writing to be very clear. It has been a long time since I ready any of it, so I can't remember details. However, it was Watts' writing that got me interested in Buddhism in the first place. That was about 40 years ago! So I have kind of a soft spot in my heart for him.

    Om mani padme hum
    Kathy

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    Forums Member justusryans's Avatar
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    I read Alan Watts as well. Yes , he had issues but even a “ bad Buddhist “May from time to time have something pertinent to say...

    Even a bad book requires thought.

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    Thank you everyone. This gives me pause for thought.

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    Forums Member Thinker's Avatar
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    He was a great entertainer, add a delightful way of mixing philosophy and humour, he was a breath of fresh air in the thought world!

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    Forums Member ancientbuddhism's Avatar
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    My first introduction to Buddhism through Zen included AW's beatnik approach. At the time I thought he was OK and even helpful to my transition from Christian to Buddhist thought-worlds. Later when I looked deeper into what the Buddha actually taught, the muddle of Beat-Buddhism with anything you like, fell away.

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