This Alan Watts video made me rethink everything I thought I knew about life

thank you

This Alan Watts video made me rethink everything I thought I knew about life

life is a beautiful Zyara

5 s

Hi Muriel, watching your beautiful and suggestive videos I think it helps to have somewhere to go, a conversation that the videos plug into.

Edgeryders really started out as a massive conversation about how we are navigating the different facets of our lives, the struggles we face both external (political, economic) as well as those to do with our inner lives ( finding spiritual resilience in difficult situations, managing our learning processes etc).

We sketched the backdrop, using statistics and cases…and looked at the narrative they were sketching/ the assumptions underpinning the frame of enquiry. And then we problematised – asking whether they resonated with our own personal experiences. The stories people shared were honest, deep and vulnerable.

It was the first time I experienced this kind of conversation outside a small circle of long term friends. @matthias is one of the people whom I met through this and together with a growing circle of people, we have gone on to build together something which has been transformative.

I think what drove this is some kind of mission. For me it was more strong intuition of a direction in which we need to move, in order to find ways of being in the world which make us strong, happy and masters of our own destiny. Over the years we have managed to articulate it.

I suppose what I am trying to say is that you need to have a position, and a place for people who want to join you to go so they find one another and can continue together. Perhaps almost a distributed bookclub? Your videos are beautiful and somehow similar to what we were exploring, but in text. So maybe we can experiment a bit together…


hey @MurielAboulrouss the vid is lovely ( at least the 1st one, it makes me want to see them all, will do so and may be then have another comment )


do you agree that everything we create is a reflection of who we are?

well I agree that everything we create is a reflection of who we are, at the moment of creation, and having in mind that our creations and designs shape us back. so yes it can shape our future as well.
so as we shape our tools , they shape us back. ( since you make videos here is a video about this from another “filmmaker” )

but then again going back to this social media concept and algorithms shaping our experience leads to separated bubbles, so don’t fully agree on the ability to produce massive change through social media. or in other words, change via social media can happen but it’s limited by the actual physical power on the ground as well.

one example to this, that I usually use, is that Clay Shirky in his book “here comes everybody” published in 2008, mentioned the egyptian activists including Alaa Abdelfattah using to arrange gatherings and stop arrests on the spot. but fast forward to this day, Alaa himself is in prison among a lot of other activists.

so change did happen but nowadays, it is not enough I would say.

this is not to say that social media is useless, no but to know that change is incremental and takes a lot of time, also real change, change within single people not crowds may come from a process of honest discussions, rethinking, self-reevaluation, openness, admitting and acknowledging failure.

so I feel your pain of the wasted talents, I see this too but knowing that the “stream” is very powerful so swimming against it is a tough process that requires a lot of belief.

back to the vid I believe that she was speaking honestly when she said “there are no coincidences” and her acceptance and trying to find her place in her own life.

the honesty here is what caught me, and starting from here and being able to have honest discussions with self and others could be a starting point.

thanks for sharing again and will have a look on the other web series


Muriel, I found myself lost in the pictures when I was watching this – the close ups give a sense of disorientation that resonate deeply with what the subject is talking about… masterful work : )

Alan Watts, had something to say about art that I am very fond of:

“The truth is rather that the images, though beautiful in themselves, come to life in the act of vanishing. The poet takes away their static solidity, and turns the beauty which would otherwise only be statuesque and architectural into music, which, no sooner than it sounded, dies away.”

I think it indicates something about your work and the points you make. When art is used for the purpose of selling something, its surface qualities are often stripped from the spirit that engendered it in the first place.

In a culture that rewards stimulus, I sense a lot of artists feel lost and somehow disembodied from themselves. They have these sensitive instruments to look inside of themselves and others, but are easily overloaded and jammed with input.

The internet, for better or worse, is a prime example of this problem – it can be used to reach and touch people around the globe; it can be yet another tool for desensitising, commodifying and ‘freezing’ your life experiences, turning us into the statues Watts is talking about.

The responsibility of the artist today is in many ways to understand the crooked ways in which this happens and respond to it in a deeper and more sophisticated manner.


Hello Hazem thank you for the feedback

Yes indeed Owen Thank you for your feedback on Zyara

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Source: Customer reviews: Beyond Biocentrism: Rethinking Time, Space, Consciousness, and the Illusion of Death

This Alan Watts video made me rethink everything I thought I knew about life

See all 186 positive reviews›

5.0 5 starsBook that will change one's understanding of their own existance

Reviewed in the United States on April 22, 2016

The first thing I must say about this book it that there are not enough stars to describe what a good read this book truly is. Robert Lanza, MD teamed up with Bob Berman (astrophysicist) to write this wonderful 200 page book that for me — finally put it all together. I studied physics and can say for myself that I have a mind of scientist that is (over)loaded with logic.

But I am also a yoga teacher and since my father's death nearly 10 years ago, I have been actively looking for answers about death, immortality and nature of space and time. I read so many books about the topic, I lost count. That was until I came across this book.

Authors finally put it all together for me that both my scientific, logical mind and my spiritual mind could put it all together in a manner that it finally all made sense.One of the 'a-ha” moments was towards the end of the book when author Lanza acknowledges the fact that plants have consciousness.

I was reading that part of the book on the train on my way form work and at one moment, I said out loud (without realizing it) – “Oh my God!” An older gentlemen, a professional man, sitting in a fine, tailored suit next to my seat, was startled and he replied: “Did you miss your train exit? Was I in a way?”. I just looked at him and smiled and my response was simply:” Oh, no.

It is just that I learned from this book that plants have consciousness! Can you believe it? And there is a proof!”.. He was so kind, he looked at me and said after a longer pause replied: “Well, it does kind of make sense – the fact that plants have consciousness….” What can I say – I repeated the same story to my yoga students I was teaching that same night.

The fact is that this book is so rich with references to ancient philosophical books, logic from ancient Greece and how all of that information is relevant today. Authors provide scientific insight on classical physics (Newton) to modern physics (quantum mechanics and relativity). For me personally, this book, every single page of it was food for my soul.

Not to mention that I was delighted to learn (and accept) the premise that authors have that, after all, we are all immortal. Some of the very fortunate people on earth experience enlightenment, and this book will show every reader that there is a potential in each and every one of us to experience it.

This book opened my eyes to possibilities that no one has ever presented in such a concise and beautiful way before.There is one portion of the book where authors discuss how human beings are used to observing and exploring universe by “looking” at the skies.

This book missed it by a couple of months, since it's been announced a few months back that scientists in New Mexico, for the first time, “heard” creation of the black hole.

This was just an idea that Einstein had nearly 50 years ago that the events in the universe can be heard and not just seen and it was only recently that scientists could prove that events in the universe can indeed be heard by human beings. Nevertheless, this book is priceless and I am keeping it as a reference in my library.

It has underlining all over the place and I just cannot stop talking about it to everyone I know.Another wonderful thing that must be mentioned is that one author (Lanza) relies strictly on science and logic, while the other co-author (Berman) believes in a “gut” feeling in spite of the fact that he received a training as a scientist.

Perhaps the part of the reason is the fact that for the period of three weeks, Mr. Berman experienced enlightenment himself. I must quote one part of the book, where Mr. Berman says: “We trust our instincts. We need no textbook to teach us to love, or to recognize danger, or to be swept into a joy by a beautiful garden.

Yet when it comes to grasping the nature of existence, we fumble and stumble through insensate theories, our eyes glazed over as we hear about string theory's extra dimensions”.

My personal struggle my entire life has been to reconcile my scientific mind with my deep sense of intuition. For a long time I denied myself my intuition because my rational mind always felt that there has to be a rational “proof” first before I make up my mind and fully accept my gut feeling. This book has finally thought me a lesson that I will allow my intuition to lead me first, I will trust it unconditionally and rationality will follow in its own time and show itself when it is ready. For that lesson I am so thankful to both of these authors. They are my personal heroes.


Coronavirus suddenly upends campaign themes for both parties

This Alan Watts video made me rethink everything I thought I knew about life

WASHINGTON (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic and the country's collapsing economy are forcing Democrats and Republicans to rethink the messaging they thought would help them win November's elections for White House and congressional control.

Shattered, certainly for now, is President Donald Trump's ability to tout a brawny economy and record stock market prices as the predicate for his reelection.

And it could be hard for Republicans to call Democrats socialists with a straight face as Congress approaches a bipartisan deal on a near $2 trillion rescue package that would essentially have government drive the economy indefinitely.

Democrats say they're the party that will protect people's health care, but it's unclear that would be heard by people focused mostly on when life will return to normal. And by pounding away at Trump's competence, they'd risk alienating voters who, during a stressful time, want policymakers to produce solutions, not partisan wrangling.

“We're in the middle of a hurricane. We don't know all the political consequences. We don't know if it's a Cat 1 or a Cat 5,” said GOP consultant Matt Mackowiak, referring to categories used to express the strength of storms.

Trump has seized public attention with almost daily briefings about the government's response to the pandemic. That's left former Vice President Joe Biden, the ly Democratic presidential nominee, and his party's congressional candidates searching for ways to break into the news cycle.

Clearly, campaign themes are changing.

Five political advertisers had run ads mentioning the coronavirus through last week, according to Advertising Analytics, a firm that tracks ad data. That included one in Florida, in Spanish, by Biden, and two by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine.

“In times this, we must work together,” Collins, who faces a competitive November reelection in a state that prizes independence, tells the camera.

Priorities USA, the largest outside Democratic political organization, planned to start ads Tuesday in election battlegrounds Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

The spot contrasts the skyrocketing number of coronavirus cases with Trump's own words, including, “We have it totally under control,” and ends with the words, “AMERICA NEEDS A LEADER WE CAN TRUST” displayed against a black background.

GOP operatives say Republican candidates must emphasize rallying behind the effort to battle the twin crises.

“The message is, ‘We all need to come together, support the president and vice president and do all we can to fight the virus,’” Republican strategist John Feehery said. “Throw everything else out the window.”

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee provided a memo last week offering guidance to its candidates.

“Remind followers through your actions that you take this seriously and would be a calm voice through crisis,” the House Democratic political arm said in the guidance obtained by The Associated Press.

It urged candidates to discuss the significance of health care access and affordability — issues that helped the party capture House control in 2018. It suggested asking voters, “How are you doing?” and “Do you need anything” during phone calls.

Among the first to test the new political world will be two rivals for an open seat in a narrowly divided House district in Los Angeles' northern suburbs.

Republican Mike Garcia and Democrat Christy Smith face a special election in May, when voters seem certain to still be focused on the virus and the battered economy. As elsewhere, efforts to curb the infection's spread means campaign phone calls and digital communications are replacing public events.

Both concede it's hard to get people's attention, but each said they are already sharpening their appeals to voters.

During tough times, people “retrench their patriotic feelings and remember what the important things are, and that's God, country and family,” Garcia, a Trump supporter and former Navy fighter pilot, said in an interview. “We're all on the same team.”

Smith, a state assemblywoman, said Americans will “rise to the occasion” but added, “Patriotism alone doesn't set food on people's tables.” She said Trump's virus response has put the U.S. “woefully behind” the infection and it's time for “a reckoning on what effective government looks .”

Both parties say it's too early to know if the virus will be contained and the economy resuscitated by the time voters focus on the fall campaigns — and whether they'll blame or laud Trump and the GOP for the outcome.

Either way, Trump is casting himself as a wartime president in hopes of garnering the broad public support that usually goes to national leaders in times of crisis.

A Trump campaign fundraising committee emailed supporters Tuesday that despite the emergency, Democrats have “proved yet again that they’d rather HURT our Nation than work with their President and do what’s right.”

Biden used a fundraiser, held by phone, to swipe at Trump, who's made numerous false statements about the virus, including on its seriousness and the availability of tests.

“We need to tell the American people the truth, the unvarnished truth,” Biden said.

“Look what we have in the White House right now,” said Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., using that same theme. Bustos, who heads House Democrats' campaign arm, cited Trump's lashing out at reporters during new briefings and said, “We all look for leaders to lead in a crisis.”

Democrats are also using the virus' spread to reprise their call for better health care.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats marked Monday's 10th anniversary of President Barack Obama signing his health care overhaul into law. “We couldn't need it more” than during this pandemic, Pelosi told reporters about the statute. She blamed Trump for making “mistake after mistake after mistake after mistake” in handling the outbreak.

And on the Senate floor Monday, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., underscored something both parties will be looking for: ways to taint the other for using the life-altering crises to seek political gain.

McConnell accused Democrats of viewing the chamber's blocked economic bill as “a juicy political opportunity” and trying to stuff it with environmental requirements and other priorities.

“Are you kidding me? This is the moment to debate new regulations that have nothing to do with this crisis?” he said.

Still, Republicans concede the party faces a huge downside should the virus remain uncontrolled.

“If we become Italy,” said the consultant Mackowiak, citing the country with the highest death toll so far, “there's no question the party in power would pay a political price for that. Absolutely no question.”

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


This Alan Watts video made me rethink everything I thought I knew about life

This Alan Watts video made me rethink everything I thought I knew about life

If you have come to a point in your life where you look at where you have arrived and what you have achieved — and you despair at what you see — you are not alone.

Most of us arrive here and realize two things: time has slipped you by and you have little to show for it.

More often than not we feel disappointment at this point. Why? What is it in our society that ultimately leaves us disappointed in ourselves and the way we lived out lives?

Alan Watts, the British-born American who was one of the earliest to interpret Eastern wisdom for a Western audience, had a perspective on life that differs from the traditional and which might be of assistance in our search for confirmation that we lived a meaningful life.

In the video below he begins with these startling words: “The existence, the physical universe is basically playful. There is no necessity for it whatsoever. It isn’t going anywhere. That is to say, it doesn’t have some destination that it ought to arrive at.”

Check it out, and if you can’t play the video right now, read on for my discussion of the video.

Being a part of this physical universe helps us to consider that we may not have a destination to arrive at.

Watts uses the analogy of music. Music, as an art form, is essentially playful. We say, you “play” the piano, we don’t say you “work” the piano.

If the point of music were the end, people would go to music concerts just to hear one crackling chord… because that’s the end!

It’s the same with dancing. “You don’t aim at a particular spot in the room because that’s where you will arrive. The whole point of the dancing is the dance.”

So, is the whole point of live also, just to live? Not to arrive at the end of life?

Watts says our system of schooling gives a completely different impression. It’s a progression of one state that leads onto the next.  And ultimately to success. That big thing that you have been working towards all your life.

“Then you wake up one day about 40 years old and you say: ‘My God, I’ve arrived. I’m there.’ And you don’t feel very different from what you’ve always felt.”

What a con, right?

So you keep on working and you keep on saving because your end game is to retire one day. That is what your life is about: at the end you want to have enough money to do nothing with because you’ve run energy. Or to pay medical bills because you never paid enough attention to your health.

You never danced to the music.

Watts has a way with words, an earnestness that jolts one to reassess one’s perspectives. At 40 or whatever age you find yourself looking at your life, put on the music and dance. You’re not on your way anywhere. You are where you’re supposed to be and the music is playing. Enjoy!

It’s also interesting to note that people who do palliative care report that what their patients regret most at the end of their lives is not having allowed themselves to be happier and enjoy life more.

Look at the people who live to retire; to put those savings away. And then when they’re 65 they don’t have any energy left. They’re more or less impotent. And they go and rot in some, old peoples, senior citizens community. Because we simply cheated ourselves the whole way down the line.

If we thought of life by analogy with a journey, with a pilgrimage, which had a serious purpose at that end, and the thing was to get to that thing at that end. Success, or whatever it is, or maybe heaven after you’re dead.

But we missed the point the whole way along.

It was a musical thing, and you were supposed to sing or to dance while the music was being played.

Is your end game to retire one day?

Here’s the video again — it’s worth watching a second time.

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