Alan Watts:

“So I always ask the question: What would you like to do if money were no object? How would you really enjoy spending your life? Well it’s so amazing as the result of our kind of educational system, crowds of students say ‘Well, we’d like to be painters, we’d like to be poets, we’d like to be writers’ But as everybody knows you can’t earn any money that way! Another person says ‘Well I’d like to live an out-of-door’s life and ride horses.’ I said ‘You wanna teach in a riding school?’

Let’s go through with it. What do you want to do? When we finally got down to something which the individual says he really wants to do I will say to him ‘You do that! And forget the money!’ Because if you say that getting the money is the most important thing you will spend your life completely wasting your time! You’ll be doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living – that is to go on doing things you don’t like doing! Which is stupid! Better to have a short life that is full of which you like doing then a long life spent in a miserable way. And after all, if you do really like what you are doing – it doesn’t really matter what it is – you can eventually become a master of it. It’s the only way of becoming the master of something, to be really with it. And then you will be able to get a good fee for whatever it is. So don’t worry too much, somebody is interested in everything. Anything you can be interested in, you’ll find others who are.

But it’s absolutely stupid to spend your time doing things you don’t like in order to go on spending things you don’t like, doing things you don’t like and to teach our children to follow the same track. See, what we are doing is we are bringing up children and educating to live the same sort of lifes we are living. In order they may justify themselves and find satisfaction in life by bringing up their children to bring up their children to do the same thing. So it’s all retch and no vomit – it never gets there! And so therefore it’s so important to consider this question:

What do I desire?”

Category: Weekend

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3 Responses to “What if Money Was No Object?”

  1. mjbennett says:

    This is an amazing speech, all his work is really thought provoking and if you want to be an individual and think for yourself its a great start, there are some great vidoes on the tragedy and hope channel on youtube with a bunch more of these videos.

    Makes you wonder why you do what you do every day. A bit like Bill Hicks “Go back to sleep america!” sketch but more eloquently put.

    Required viewing for anyone who wants to think for themselves. Not many I would say.

  2. USSofA says:

    The background music was nice, the message was appealing but we all know down deep it is absolute horsesh*t.

  3. eideard says:

    Fortunately, I read Alan Watts and a few other folks from the other side of the pond who give similar advice – before I settled into adult endeavors. I followed that advice and have a lived a satisfying life. Even as a retired cranky old geek, I have an enjoyable day, every day.

    People like USSofA are just too chickenshit to stand up and try it. No doubt.