Welcoming Alan Watts under the Be Here Now Network blanket, we uncover the truth, honesty, and cosmic giggle which made Ram Dass and Alan Watts such transformative teachers.
In celebration of the new Be Here Now Network series Being in the Way – an Alan Watts podcast exclusively on Ram Dass’ Be Here Now Network – we will be exploring the unique wisdom, honesty, humor, and quirks that made both of these individuals such potently transformative spiritual teachers throughout their lifetimes.
Expressing the Ineffable
If you are here reading this passage on a mindfulness and spirituality website, more than likely in your past you were sparked onto the spiritual path, into self-inquiry, through some sort of catalyst. Maybe it was a psychedelic that took you beyond yourself, a near-death experience, the loss of a loved one, the imaginative beauty of a song or a piece of art, or merging in the awe of nature. Whatever it was, it’s safe to say that the experiential quality was something ineffable, an experience beyond the vocabulary that our feeding tube can generally muster.
“What do I mean by spirit? Religions are methods for coming into the spirit. What I am referring to as spirit is that which infuses all forms, but which also transcends all forms.” – Ram Dass
Live your trip in the Tao. Live your trip in the Now. Join Ram Dass as he elucidates karma on ‘the way of harmony,’ on Ep. 180 of Here & Now
Search for Understanding
If you’re anything like me, the moment you tasted of these other realms—these other perspectives and ways of perceiving reality—there was an intrinsic thirst for answers. This thirst turned into a search for understanding, for truth, for wholeness. There had to be people who knew, or at least who knew they didn’t know, and would be able to express that. In my earnest seeking, auspiciously, around the same time, I stumbled upon my very first Alan Watts book and listened to my first Ram Dass Here & Now podcast.
“Every intelligent individual wants to know what makes him tick, and yet is at once fascinated and frustrated by the fact that oneself is the most difficult of all things to know.” – Alan Watts
Listen to a specially curated podcast featuring wisdom from transformative spiritual teachers Ram Dass & Alan Watts: From Separation to Unity, Intuition and Trust
Honesty & Humor
It wasn’t the extensive knowledge that hooked me to Alan Watts and Ram Dass. There were plenty of spiritual teachers that had extensive ‘knowing,’ but that just never landed for me. There was something different about Alan and Ram Dass, something beneath the surface: a warmth, a humbleness, a vulnerability in honesty, a pureness to their offering, and maybe most importantly: a true cosmic giggle.
In the story of the Buddha, when he was about to reach enlightenment under the Bodhi Tree, despite witnessing the infinite suffering in the world, the Buddha cracked a smile. When Mara, a deity representing the antagonistic forces against enlightenment, questioned him, ‘What right do you have to smile amidst this suffering?’ the Buddha knelt down and touched Mother Earth in his famous mudra, silently exemplifying his cosmic giggle as our very birthright of basic goodness.
“Truth is revealed by removing things that stand in its light, an art not unlike sculpture in which the artist creates, not by building, but by hacking away.” – Alan Watts
Open yourself to a dynamic blog tying together wisdom and quotes from legendary spiritual teachers Ram Dass & Alan Watts: Dancing with Change
The honesty, quick wit, humor, and raw human-ness of both Ram Dass and Alan Watts helped disarm generations – which skeptically pushed against religion – helping welcome individuals, like myself, into spiritual practices and eastern methodologies and traditions. It wasn’t about what they knew or accomplished, or even what they were doing – it was about how they were being: being truth, being love, being honest, being vulnerable, being present, being human.
Being in the Way
With this wisdom and storied history in mind, our team at Be Here Now Network is proud to welcome Alan Watts to our family of spiritual teachers. Being in the Way, hosted by Alan’s son Mark, features a transformative collection of specially curated dharma talks from Alan Watts, along with interviews and commentary from Mark which aim to ‘see how Alan’s words resonate with current events, and how they are changing our outlook as we emerge from a deep sleep as a culture. Welcome, Alan & Mark!