We are pleased to present this excerpt from “Reality, Art and Illusion by Alan Watts. Come as he takes a look at how we, as people, view human beings and view the universe.
There was an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York some years ago, called ‘The New Image of Man’, and these things didn’t look like human beings at all. Some of them did, but, but that’s because ‘What does a human being look like?’; That depends on your point of view. You see, if you are prejudiced that a human being is only what is inside his skin, then you think that, when anybody paints a human being beyond those boundaries, that he has lost the image of man.
He hasn’t necessarily lost it at all. You see, there’s an old feeling that the shape of the universe is the shape of man. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard that said. That man is the microcosm, and that the universe as a whole is the macrocosm. Now, as you plumb out into the universe and explore it astronomically, it gets very strange. You begin to see things in the depths that, at first sight, seem utterly remote. How could they have anything to do with us? They are so far off, and so unlikely, and in the same way, when you start probing into the inner workings of the human body, you come across all kinds of funny little monsters, and wiggly things, that bear no resemblance to what we recognize as the human image.