Become What You Are – Alan Watts


“It has been said that the highest wisdom lies in detachment, or, in the words of Chung-Tzu, ‘The perfect man employs his mind as a mirror; it grasps nothing; it refuses nothing; it receives, but does not keep.’

Detachment means to have neither regrets for the past nor fears for the future; to let life take its course without attempting to interfere with its movement and change, neither trying to prolong the stay of something pleasant nor to hasten the departure of things unpleasant. To do this is to move in time with life, to be in perfect accord with its changing music, and this is called Enlightenment.

In short, it is to be detached from both the past and future and to live in the eternal Now. For in truth neither past nor future have any existence apart from this Now; by themselves they are illusions. Life exists only at this very moment…

You may believe yourself out of harmony with life and its eternal Now; but you cannot be, for you are life and exist Now—otherwise you would not be here. Hence the infinite Tao is something which you can neither escape by flight nor catch by pursuit; there is no coming toward it or going away from it; it is, and you are it. So become what you are.” 

~Alan Watts~


About Christopher Chase

Co-creator and Admin of the Facebook pages "Tao & Zen" "Art of Learning" & "Creative Systems Thinking." Majored in Studio Art at SUNY, Oneonta. Graduated in 1993 from the Child & Adolescent Development program at Stanford University's School of Education. Since 1994, have been teaching at Seinan Gakuin University, in Fukuoka, Japan.
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9 Responses to Become What You Are – Alan Watts

  1. Pingback: Become what you are | Zen Flash

  2. k a r a h ~ says:

    Reblogged this on k a r a h ~ l i n and commented:
    Become What You Are

  3. Paul Kenney says:

    This is my all-time favourite – sums it all up perfectly!

  4. Walker says:

    But if we do not attempt to change anything at all — that is also to say, we do not endeavour to make anything happen, then what *is* the point of living? Are we to be simply — and might I say, mindlessly be only on the receiving end of what Life spews onto us?

  5. Michael Julian says:

    Reblogged this on A Patchwork Apocalypse.

  6. Pingback: Become What You Are – Alan Watts – Untamedgypsy's Blog

  7. elouisesimon says:

    Thank you Christopher 🙂 Understanding that we are ‘fluid’ in our continual waves of energy and that energy cannot be ‘owned’ is an important part of finding the peace with all things.

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