Alan Watts
The Dream Of Life.

I’m not convinced that there’s anyone who can speak more beautifully about life than the late, great Alan Watts could. He had a wonderful ability to make you think about life in a way which was just a step removed form your usual perspective. Thank God he recorded so many of his lectures so we can continue to listen to his words now that he’s gone:

Let’s suppose that you were able, every night, to dream any dream you wanted to dream. And that you could, for example, have the power within one night to dream 75 years of time. Or any length of time you wanted to have.

And you would naturally as you began on this adventure of dreams, you would fulfil all your wishes. you would have every kind of pleasure you could conceive. And after several nights, of 75 years of total pleasure each, you would say “Well! That was pretty great!” But now let’s have a surprise.

Let’s have a dream which isn’t under control. Where something is going to happen to me that I don’t know what its going to be. And you would dig that and come out of that and say “Wow! That was a close shave wasn’t it?”

And then you would get more and more adventurous. And you would make further and further out gambles as to what you would dream. And finally you would dream where you are now. You would dream the dream of living the life that you are actually living today. That would be within the infinite multiplicity of choices you would have, of playing that you weren’t God.

What’s the difference between waiting and enduring?

Just beautiful stuff from the late, great, Alan Watts:

What do you do when somebody says “pay attention”? What is the difference between looking at something and taking a hard look at it? Or between hearing something and listening intently? What’s the difference? What’s the difference between waiting while something goes on and enduring it? Why the difference is this:

When you pay attention instead of just looking, you screw up your face. You frown and stare. When you will, you grit your teeth or clench your fists. When you endure, or control yourself, you pull yourself together. Physically. And therefore you get uptight. You hold your breath. You do all kinds of muscular things to control the functioning of your nervous system.

And none of them have the slightest effect.