A superior religion goes beyond theology. It turns toward the center; it investigates and feels out the inmost depths of man himself, since it is here that we are in most intimate contact, or rather, in identity with existence itself.

Alan Watts

Born: January 6, 1915

Died: November 16, 1973 (Age 58)

Alan Wilson Watts was a British philosopher, writer, and speaker, best known as an interpreter and populariser of Eastern philosophy for a Western audience. Born in Chislehurst, England, he moved to the United States in 1938 and began Zen training in New York. Pursuing a career, he attended Seabury-Western Theological Seminary, where he received a master's degree in theology. Watts became an Episcopal priest in 1945, then left the ministry in 1950 and moved to California, where he joined the faculty of the American Academy of Asian Studies.

Watts gained a large following in the San Francisco Bay Area while working as a volunteer programmer at KPFA, a Pacifica Radio station in Berkeley. Watts wrote more than 25 books and articles on subjects important to Eastern and Western religion, introducing the then-burgeoning youth culture to The Way of Zen, one of the first bestselling books on Buddhism. Towards the end of his life, he divided his time between a houseboat in Sausalito and a cabin on Mount Tamalpais.

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