"Now, of course, reality—from a philosopher’s point of view—is a dangerous word. A philosopher will ask me: what do I mean by reality? Am I talking about the physical world of nature, or am I talking about a spiritual world, or what? And to that, I have a very simple answer. When we talk about the material world, that is actually a philosophical concept. So, in the same way, if I say that reality is spiritual, that’s also a philosophical concept. And reality itself is not a concept. Reality is [imagine hearing Alan Watts striking a standing bell], and we won’t give it a name.
Now, it’s amazing what doesn’t exist in the real world. For example, in the real world there aren’t any things, nor are there any events. That doesn’t mean to say that the real world is a perfectly featureless blank. It means that it is a marvelous system of wiggles in which we describe things and events in the same way as we would project images on a Rorschach blot, or pick out particular groups of stars in the sky and call them constellations as if they were separate groups of stars. Well, they’re groups of stars in the mind’s eye, in our system of concepts. They are not—out there, as constellations—already grouped in the sky.
So, in the same way, the difference between myself and all the rest of the universe is nothing more than an idea. It is not a real difference. And meditation is the way in which we come to feel our basic inseparability from the whole universe, and what that requires is that we shut up. That is to say, that we become interiorally silent and cease from the interminable chatter that goes on inside our skulls. Because you see, most of us think compulsively all the time, that is to say, we talk to ourselves."