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Alan Watts - Life is a hoax (Man is a hoax, Big Bang = you)

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Uploaded on Oct 17, 2011

"...and it suddenly dawns on you that you've 'arrived', that in a certain sense you're having been cheated because life just feels the same as it always felt."
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"We have a whole system of preparation of the child for life which always is preparation and never actually gets there."... "From the beginning, we condition our children to a defective sense of identity. We condition the child in a way that sets the child a life problem which is insoluble, and therefore they're attended by constant frustration. And as a result of this problem being insoluble, it is perpetually postponed to the future. So that one lives, one is educated to live in the future, and one is not ever educated to live today. Now, I'm not proposing the philosophy of carpe diem, 'Let us drink today for tomorrow we die, and not make any plans', but what I am saying is that making plans for the future is of use to people only who are capable of living completely in the present. Because when you make plans for the future and they mature, if you can't live in the present you are not able to enjoy the future for which you have planned. Because you will have in you a kind of syndrome whereby happiness consists in promises, and not in direct and immediate realisations, so long as you feel tomorrow it will come. So, everything is based on the idea, that you will get it tomorrow and you can enjoy yourself today, so long as tomorrow looks bright. But Confucius once said, that 'A man who understands the tao in the morning, can die contentedly in the evening.' That is to say, if you ever lived one complete moment, you can be ready to die. But if you never lived that complete moment, death is always like a guy who comes into a bar at 2 o'clock in the morning, and says 'Time gentleman, please!'. And you say 'Oh, please, one more drink! Not yet!', because you haven't really had the feeling that you ever had it and you ever really got there."... When you are a child, your parents, your peers, your teachers, your uncles and aunts are very anxious to define you, and what they are going to tell you is that you are a free agent, you are responsible. That is to say, you are an independent first cause. You are an origin of action and thoughts and feelings, and we can praise you or blame you for what you can do; and above all we require of you that you love us. You love your parents, you love your brothers and sisters, not of course because we tell you to do so, but because you would want to do it yourself. You are required and commanded to do certain things which will be appreciated only if you do them voluntarily. Now, you see, when your identity is defined by society, you cannot resist it. You don't have the knowledge, you don't have the wisdom, you don't have the resources to understand that something is being put over on you. You cannot but help believe the definition of you as a free agent. But you believe yourself to be a free agent as a result of not being free, that is to say, of being hopelessly unable to resist society's identification of you. So, in the whole sense of our personality there is a contradiction, and that is why the sense of ego, of being oneself, is simultaneously a sense of frustration. The feeling of I-ness, so far as most people are concerned, is a feeling of tension between the eyes, and behind them."...
"Children very often ask their parents, as a result of having been given this funny sense of identity: "Mommy, who would I have been if my father had been someone else?" This is a very common child's question, because the child gets the message from the parents, using the English language, the French language, the German language or whatever, that 'I am somewhat in my body. You gave me my body, but who am I to whom this was given?' You can say to a girl in our culture: 'Darling, you're absolutely gorgeous, you're so beautiful!' And she says: ' How like a man! All you see is bodies. I may be beautiful, but that's my parents gave me my body. I want to be admired for myself and not for my chassis.' And this poor girl is a chauffeur. She is alienated from her body, and she doesn't take any credit, doesn't assume any responsibility for being what she is physically, and this is of course is as much true of men as of women. It is a common cultural attitude that we say: 'I have a body', we don't say: 'I am a body'. We feel the very sharp distinction, in other words, between our consciousness, which is a kind of focused attention together with all those actions that we are able to perform voluntarily, on the one hand, and on the other hand, everything, both within us and outside us that seems merely to happen to us."
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Life is a hoax #2 (The unpreachable religion): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0ndqo...

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