A Listening Meditation by Alan Watts

Alan Watts was a 'spiritual entertainer', philosopher and lecturer of Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism and mystical Christianity, known for being one of the first to interpret Eastern philosophies for a western audience. Hours of his lectures are available online as well as several published books and essays exploring these topics. Watt's work is loved by many for offering an accessible route into understanding Eastern thought and finding a common ground between Eastern and Western religions. 

Watt's believed meditation is 'the discovery that the point of life is always arrived at in the immediate moment'. For Watts, one of the easiest ways to enter the meditative state is to start by listening to the sounds around us. All the senses offer a way to become grounded in the present moment, but Watts thought sound to be the easiest and often used listening as a meditative exercise...

What you do is this: as you hear sounds coming up in your head thoughts you simply listen to them as part of the general noise going on just as you would be listening to the sound of my voice or just as you would be listening to cars going by or two birds chattering outside the window. So look at your own thoughts as just noises. And soon you will find that the so-called outside world and the so-called inside world come together. They are a happening. Your thoughts are happening, just like the sounds going on outside and everything is simply a happening and all you’re doing is watching it. - Alan Watts, from AlanWatts.org

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