JUST SO

Foreword Reviews - - Spotlight Audiobooks—nonfiction - CATHERINE THURESON

Alan Watts, Sounds True, $99.95 (10.5 hours), 978-1-62203-764-3 Th­ese col­lected sem­i­nars will in­tro­duce the bril­liance of the renowned philoso­pher to new au­di­ences.

Just So brings to­gether three of renowned philoso­pher Alan Watts’s sem­i­nars. Just over ten hours long, its con­tent is fas­ci­nat­ing from be­gin­ning to end, of­fer­ing truly pro­found in­sights into the work­ings of the cos­mos.

Th­ese three sem­i­nars cover a range of top­ics, in­clud­ing psy­chol­ogy, bi­ol­ogy, physics, re­li­gion, and eco­nom­ics. They draw on the­o­ries and ideas from var­i­ous spir­i­tual sys­tems and philoso­phies to present a clear and com­pelling view of the uni­verse. Its ob­ser­va­tions stand to be very help­ful in un­der­stand­ing and im­prov­ing ev­ery­day life.

This is not an au­dio­book for back­ground lis­ten­ing; it is too full of deep ideas. While some of its con­cepts are read­ily clear, most re­quire ef­fort to be mean­ing­fully pro­cessed, as with no­tions like: “you do not carry on an ex­is­tence with­out a so­ci­ety, and the re­ac­tions of other peo­ple to you pro­vide you with the mir­ror in which you at­tain a re­al­iza­tion of your­self.”

It will al­most cer­tainly be nec­es­sary to lis­ten to parts or all of this au­dio­book more than once. Hap­pily, there is an in­sert in­cluded with the discs that breaks down the top­ics cov­ered, from disc to disc and track to track.

Th­ese are record­ings of live sem­i­nars, and the sound qual­ity re­flects that. There is oc­ca­sional laugh­ter and au­di­ence rustling, and even the sound of an air­plane at one point. Though such mo­ments are dis­tract­ing, Watts is a dy­namic speaker and it is easy to get reim­mersed in his voice and his mes­sage.

Just So is an ex­cit­ing au­dio­book for any­one in­ter­ested in spir­i­tu­al­ity or phi­los­o­phy. Watts was a well-known philoso­pher in the 1950s and ’60s, and those who were fans then will ap­pre­ci­ate this chance to re­visit his bril­liance. Per­haps even more sig­nif­i­cantly, Just So will in­tro­duce his ideas to a whole new gen­er­a­tion.

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