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"Thoughtful and thought-provoking, involving vast knowledge and research and deeply serious in intent." Los Angeles Times
Before he became a counterculture hero, Alan Watts was known as an incisive scholar of Eastern and Western psychology and philosophy. In this 1961 classic, Watts demonstrates his deep understanding of both Western (Freudian/Jungian) psychotherapy and Eastern spiritual philosophies. He examined the problem of humans in a seemingly hostile universe in ways that questioned the social norms and illusions that bind and constrict modern humans. Marking a groundbreaking synthesis, Watts asserted that the powerful insights of Freud and Jung, which had, indeed, brought psychiatry close to the edge of liberation, could, if melded with the hitherto secret wisdom of the Eastern traditions free man from his battle with the self. If we look deeply into such ways of life as Buddhism and Taoism, Vedanta and yoga, we do not find either philosophy or religion as these are understood in the West. We find something more nearly resembling psychotherapy.” This synthesis is as powerful now as it was then, and as ripe for revival.
Spiritual philosopher Alan Watts, student of Buddhism, Anglican minister, chaplain at Northwestern University, author of more than twenty books, and counterculture icon, died in 1973.