The Wisdom Of Insecurity: A Message For An Age Of Anxiety

The Wisdom of Insecurity
by Alan W. Watts

We live in an age of unprecedented anxiety. Spending all our time trying to anticipate and plan for the future and to lamenting the past, we forget to embrace the here and now. We are so concerned with tomorrow that we forget to enjoy today. Drawing from Eastern philosophy and religion, Alan Watts shows that it is only by acknowledging what we do not—and cannot—know that we can learn anything truly worth knowing. In The Wisdom of Insecurity, he shows us how, in order to lead a fulfilling life, we must embrace the present—and live fully in the now. Featuring an Introduction by Deepak Chopra.


The Age of Anxiety
by W. H. Auden

When it was first published in 1947, The Age of Anxiety–W. H. Auden’s last, longest, and most ambitious book-length poem–immediately struck a powerful chord, capturing the imagination of the cultural moment that it diagnosed and named. Beginning as a conversation among four strangers in a barroom on New York’s Third Avenue, Auden’s analysis of Western culture during the Second World War won the Pulitzer Prize and inspired a symphony by Leonard Bernstein as well as a ballet by Jerome Robbins. Yet reviews of the poem were sharply divided, and today, despite its continuing fame, it is unjustly neglected by readers.

This volume–the first annotated, critical edition of the poem–introduces this important work to a new generation of readers by putting it in historical and biographical context and elucidating its difficulties. Alan Jacobs’s introduction and thorough annotations help today’s readers understand and appreciate the full richness of a poem that contains some of Auden’s most powerful and beautiful verse, and that still deserves a central place in the canon of twentieth-century poetry.


The Meaning of Happiness
by Alan Watts

Deep down, most people think that happiness comes from having or doing something. Here, in Alan Watts’s groundbreaking second book (originally published in 1940), he offers a more challenging thesis: authentic happiness comes from embracing life as a whole in all its contradictions and paradoxes, an attitude that Watts calls the "way of acceptance." Drawing on Eastern philosophy, Western mysticism, and analytic psychology, Watts demonstrates that happiness comes from accepting both the outer world around us and the inner world inside us — the unconscious mind, with its irrational desires, lurking beyond the awareness of the ego. Although written early in his career, The Meaning of Happiness displays the hallmarks of his mature style: the crystal-clear writing, the homespun analogies, the dry wit, and the breadth of knowledge that made Alan Watts one of the most influential philosophers of his generation.

Become what You are
by 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. . . . You may believe yourself out of harmony with life and its eternal Now; but you cannot be, for you are life and exist Now.”—from Become What You Are

In this collection of writings, including nine new chapters never before available in book form, Watts displays the intelligence, playfulness of thought, and simplicity of language that has made him so perennially popular as an interpreter of Eastern thought for Westerners. He draws on a variety of religious traditions, and covers topics such as the challenge of seeing one’s life “just as it is,” the Taoist approach to harmonious living, the limits of language in the face of ineffable spiritual truth, and the psychological symbolism of Christian thought.


Buddhism the Religion of No-Religion
by Alan Watts

The widespread influence of Buddhism is due in part to the skill with which a way of liberation was refined by it’s teachers and became accessible to people of diverse cultures.

In this dynamic series of lectures, Alan Watts takes us on an exploration of Buddhism, from its roots in India to the explosion of interest in Zen and the Tibetan tradition in the West. Watts traces the Indian beginnings of Buddhism, delineates differences between Buddhism and other religions, looks at the radical methods of the Mahayan Buddhist, and reviews the Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path


The Book
by Alan W. Watts

In The Book, Alan Watts provides us with a much-needed answer to the problem of personal identity, distilling and adapting the Hindu philosophy of Vedanta.

At the root of human conflict is our fundamental misunderstanding of who we are. The illusion that we are isolated beings, unconnected to the rest of the universe, has led us to view the “outside” world with hostility, and has fueled our misuse of technology and our violent and hostile subjugation of the natural world. To help us understand that the self is in fact the root and ground of the universe, Watts has crafted a revelatory primer on what it means to be human—and a mind-opening manual of initiation into the central mystery of existence.


Still the Mind
by Alan Watts

Mark Watts compiled this book from his father’s extensive journals and audiotapes of famous lectures he delivered in his later years across the country. In three parts, Alan Watts explains the basic philosophy of meditation, how individuals can practice a variety of meditations, and how inner wisdom grows naturally.

Nature, Man and Woman
by Alan W. Watts

In Nature, Man and Woman, philosopher Alan Watts reexamines humanity’s place in the natural world—and the relation between body and spirit—in the light of Chinese Taoism.  Western thought and culture have coalesced around a series of constructed ideas—that human beings stand separate from a nature that must be controlled; that the mind is somehow superior to the body; that all sexuality entails a seduction—that  in some way underlie our exploitation of the earth, our distrust of emotion, and our loneliness and reluctance to love. Here, Watts fundamentally challenges these assumptions, drawing on the precepts of Taoism to present an alternative vision of man and the universe—one in which the distinctions between self and other, spirit and matter give way to a more holistic way of seeing.

From the Trade Paperback edition.


This Is It
by Alan W. Watts

Six revolutionary essays exploring the relationship between spiritual experience and ordinary life—and the need for them to coexist within each of us.

With essays on “cosmic consciousness” (including Alan Watts’ account of his own ventures into this inward realm); the paradoxes of self-consciousness; LSD and consciousness; and the false opposition of spirit and matter, This Is It and Other Essays on Zen and Spiritual Experience is a truly mind-opening collection.


What Is Tao?
by Alan Watts

Alan Watts — noted author and respected authority on Far Eastern thought — studied Taoism extensively, and in his final years moved to a quiet cabin in the mountains and dedicated himself almost exclusively to meditating and writing on the Tao. This new book gives us an opportunity to not only understand the concept of the Tao but to experience the Tao as a personal practice of liberation from the limitations imposed by the common beliefs within our culture. The philosophy of the Tao offers a way to understand the value of ourselves as free-willed individuals enfolded within the ever-changing patterns of nature. The path of the Tao is perhaps the most puzzling way of liberation to come to us from the Far East in the last century. It is both practical and esoteric, and it has a surprisingly comfortable quality of thought that is often overlooked by Western readers who never venture beyond the unfamiliar quality of the word Tao (pronounced “dow”). But those who do soon discover a way of understanding and living with the world that has profound implications for us today in so-called modern societies. The word Tao means the Way — in the sense of a path, a way to go — but it also means nature, in the sense of one’s true nature, and the nature of the universe. Often described as the philosophy of nature, we find the origins of Taoism in the shamanic world of pre-Dynastic China. Living close to the earth, one sees the wisdom of not interfering, and letting things go their way. It is the wisdom of swimming with the current, splitting wood along the grain, and seeking to understand human nature instead of changing it. Every creature finds it’s way according to the laws of nature, and each of us has our own inner path — or Tao.

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