Monday, April 17, 2006
Watts happening is nothing
Deconstructing the program ...
In response to inquiries, here is the first in a series of annotations relating to our broadcast/podcast.
Every Cotolo Chronicles show ends with the line, "I have nothing more to say."
"The idea of nothing has confused mankind for centuries, especially in the Western world," according to Alan Watts (pictured), one of the most widely read philosophers of the 20th century."We have a saying in Latin, 'Ex nihilo nuhil fit,' which means 'out of nothing comes nothing.' It has occurred to me that this is a fallacy of tremendous proportions.
"It lies at the root of all our common sense, not only in the West, but in many parts of the East as well. It manifests in a kind of terror of nothing, a put-down on nothing, and a put-down on everything associated with nothing, such as sleep, passivity, rest, and even the feminine principles. But to me nothing -- the negative, the empty -- is exceedingly powerful. I would say, on the contrary, you can't have something without nothing. Imagine nothing but space, going on and on, with nothing in it forever. But there you are imagining it, and you are something in it. The whole idea of there being only space, and nothing else at all is not only inconceivable but perfectly meaningless, because we always know what we mean by contrast."
For more about nothing and lots of other "things," click here for the Alan Watts website and check out the Alan Watts podcast, featuring talks on "things" that we all shouldn't think about.