In "Nature, Man and Woman, " philosopher Alan Watts reexamines humanity's place in the natural world--and the relation between body and spirit--in the light of Chinese Taoism. Western thought and culture have coalesced around a series of constructed ideas--that human beings stand separate from a nature that must be controlled; that the mind is somehow superior to the body; that all sexuality entails a seduction--that in some way underlie our exploitation of the earth, our distrust of emotion, and our loneliness and reluctance to love. Here, Watts fundamentally challenges these assumptions, drawing on the precepts of Taoism to present an alternative vision of man and the universe--one in which the distinctions between self and other, spirit and matter give way to a more holistic way of seeing.
About the Author
Alan Watts was born in England in 1915 and received his early education at King's School, Canterbury. He received a master's degree from Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Illinois and an honorary doctorate of divinity from the University of Vermont. He wrote his first book, The Spirit of Zen, at the age of twenty and went on to write over twenty other books including The Way of Zen, The Book, and Tao: The Watercourse Way, which though never fully completed was published after the author's death and introduced thousands of readers to Taoist thought.
In addition to being an acclaimed author and philosopher, Dr. Watts was also an Episcopalian minister, professor, graduate-school dean and reasearch fellow of Harvard University. By the early 1960s, he moved to Sausolito, California, and held seminars and lectures throughout the United States. Alan Watts died in 1973.