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Still the Mind

4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  366 ratings  ·  25 reviews
During the last decade of his life, Alan Watts lectured extensively as he traveled across the country. He often accompanied his talks with guided meditation sessions and contemplative rituals designed to instruct his audiences in the art of meditation; Still the Mind is drawn from recordings of those lectures, meditations, and rituals. Watts's son Mark edited more than 800 ...more
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Published February 1st 2010 by New World Library (first published 2000)
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Jan 30, 2008 Shannon rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people interested in buddhism/meditation, tortla
Shelves: favorites, own
Very enjoyable and lighthearted and insightful/deep at the same time. Alan Watts sounds like he was a great guy. I wanted to quote a lot of this book, but it seriously would have been like every line in the book. I think my lilbro would like this.
Sep 26, 2007 Eric rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: meditators, philosophers

Not for everyone, it's more of Watts' personal take on letting go and living in the 'Eternal Now' than a practical guide on exactly what to do in order to meditate. I find it an interesting take on why a person would engage in meditation, but if you're like me you'll also want a guidebook with specific instruction on how to sit, breathe, etc., exactly what to do. It's interesting but limited in its usefulness, at least it was for me.
Excellent read. Alan Watts has incredible talent presenting his ideas with great lucidity. I am a big fan. Enjoy how he can take difficult concepts, especially for the western mind, and make them seem if not obvious at least intelligible.
A lovely and amusing lecture by Mr. Watts, but I don't know why this is titled as an introduction to meditation. I doubt a beginner would find much useful here, but it's an enjoyable deconstruction of self and effort.
I don't think it is overstating that the biggest challenge to robust Christian commitment in America today is its fascination with Eastern religion, often morphing on American soil. Alan Watts was a popularizer of Zen Buddhism in the 60's and 70's. This book is a compilation of lectures that Watts delivered on the topic of meditation. As you would expect, there is a great deal of practical wisdom and social critique. The non-striving, non-manipulating approach to meditation is instructive for Ch ...more
An enjoyable perspective on Zen, existence, wholeness, the illusion of separateness, mindfulness, and enjoyment. Oh he good.
An interesting introduction to meditation theory, but I was looking for meditation practice.
Cory Mathews
excellent. will reread in a few months to absorb more.
Bryan Duffy
Sep 28, 2007 Bryan Duffy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People intersted in Meditation
This book was the first Alan Watts book I read. Its more like a daily reminder book. Its bits and pieces of his lectures put into a book. Its good to carry around with you if you are having a confusing day. Something to go to and just get lost in.

Its not really a HOW TO book per say, but it is A HOW TO HOW TO Book.

Thats the best way I can describe it.

Read other books by him first.

Once again,
Positive Reading.
Joshua Mitchell
I love his work. Very interesting and straight forward. Very easy to read!
An excellent, non-methodical, musing on the essence of meditation itself, and a great introduction into the mind and teachings of Alan Watts. Playful yet deep, simple yet transforming, this is a short book with endless meaning.
A wonderful introduction to the philosophy of Alan Watts, which seamlessly brings Eastern ideas to a Western audience.

"Alan Watts is able to use words to take us beyond them."
Nothing too profound or unexpected here. Charlotte Joko Beck does this brand of Zen writing much better... Watts is at his best in the more philosophical strain, in my opinion.
This really isn't an introduction to meditating.

But Alan's philosophical ideas and his articulation of them make this worth listening to.
Ankur Banerjee
Easy and simple in words and quite enlightening, without going too much into terminology. Many one-liners that sum up Zen concepts succinctly.
Good introduction to meditation. Ironically, it gave me a lot to think about not thinking.
4 "i"
This is a great read for those trying to grasp meditation and it's value to the human experience.
Nov 17, 2007 Ryan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: solo camping? take this.
Great reading if you're spending any time in a tent by yourself for any extended amount of time.
Adam Sprague
Easily the worst book I've read on meditation. Not sure how this has such a high rating.
a classic and well worth that label: this book endures and brings us back to the basics.
Heather Rogers
What I've read so far is really good. I can tell I'm gonna read this one again.
Peter Bufano
Aug 28, 2007 Peter Bufano is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 50 year old chatterboxes
Alan watts had a son. that's all i've learned so far. i'll keep you posted.
More Zen. Not the best collection of talks on Buddhism out there.
Very well written on how to quiet the mind through meditation.
One of Watts best books.
Anxhelo Gjipali
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Alan Wilson Watts was a British philosopher, writer, speaker, who held both a master's in theology & a doctorate of divinity. Famous for his research on comparative religion, he was best known as an interpreter & popularizer of Asian philosophies for a Western audience. He wrote over 25 books & numerous articles on subjects such as personal identity, the true nature of reality, higher ...more
More about Alan W. Watts...
The Way of Zen The Book on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are The Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety Tao: The Watercourse Way This is It & Other Essays on Zen & Spiritual Experience

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“People become concerned with being more humble than other people.” 40 likes
“when somebody plays music, you listen. you just follow those sounds, and eventually you understand the music. the point can't be explained in words because music is not words, but after listening for a while, you understand the point of it, and that point is the music itself. in exactly the same way, you can listen to all experiences.” 9 likes
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