Thursday, November 3, 2016

Alan Watts - Importance of Play in a Survivalist Culture



Alan Watts describes the perhaps accurate apocalyptic view that television is ruining our society. We're driven mad with images! "One can only draw the conclusion that the assumption underlying this is that expressions of physical love are far more dangerous than expressions of physical hatred," Watts concludes. One can argue that this obsession with images, more specifically with television, is at the root of our society's long-winded decay. Whether or not you agree with my conclusion, based on this lecture and other statistical information, it is quite obvious that American society is clearly obsessed with television.

Watts also goes on to elaborate on our evolution or our de-evolution. We've become so occupied with making a living that we're forgotten how to make a life, is one way to say it. We've brought our children up to believe that "work" is of the most vital importance. Play becomes work and work becomes tedious. When time becomes scarcity, there is hardly any room for joy, unwinding and playful occupations that elaborate our soul's existence.

There's no time for fun at work. We get home from work and are driven to the point of exhaustion because of this occupation that we think we "need." The image of walking alone in a desolate suburb, everybody glued to their bright light in a box, where one must have a "purpose" or a reason to go is a rather stark one.

It seems very wild, and irrational that we must always have some place to arrive at. Through this constant need for a place to "be," we hardly arrive anywhere and we hardly know where we're going, Watts argues.

This may seem like a very somber world view, however, i would classify this as "realist" in nature.
There's nothing wrong with an honest look at our society, it's goals and it's results in the seemingly obvious numbing-out of the American intellect. There's quite a therapeutic release, for me at least, when one can sincerely look at the direction this culture is headed even when the end point or destination doesn't look like a bright one.

More optimistically, i am enthused with the counter culture, with the rebels and thinkers who look for an alternative way of life or a simple "way out." How to do this is becoming ever more clear. All one must do is simply say "no." No to the abuse, neglect and mistreatment of the human intellect, its resilience and ability to expand consciousness, awareness and YES: LOVE!

It becomes quite arduous, i can imagine, to deny the needs to expanding the mind, learning and growing as well as evolving in a natural manner in order to be a purveyor of Good in this world, rather than become a passive, dismissive and judgmental victim of this intriguing system of control and unending quest for excessive comfort and leisure.

Alan Watts - Importance of Play in a Survivalist Culture

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