A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z #

Alan Watts

"Warp And Woof"

My mother was a very great artist in embroidery; did absolutely fabulous work
And she could do everything with thread: sewing, knitting, embroidery, make tapestries, repair tapestries—oh, just fabulous work
So I’ve grown up in a background where thread is of enormous importance
She made a living this way, for a while
So I was always amazed at the way you take a ball of wool, and with knitting needles, and suddenly it turns into a sweater
Fantastic!
But I found out, you see, the secret of this, which is that it will do this – it will hold together – by this combination of

[Chorus]
Warp and woof
Warp and woof
This process where one thread goes under the other, omits the next, goes under the other
Warp and woof
Warp and woof
And then the next thing does the same thing, but in the opposite way
Connect that

And they hold each other up
For example, you can put two sticks of wood, and lean them against each other, and they’ll stand up
We know the Chinese character for man (人) looks more or less like that
And although this is simply the brush form, the brush abbreviation, of what were originally the legs of a little human stick figure
There’s a story that Japanese children sometimes learn from their mothers: that the reason this is the character for man is that two sticks, leaned together as I described, will keep each other up
And the one depends on the other; it’s mutual
And so in the same way, the existence of human beings depends on our supporting each other
Without that, no one of us can exist
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z #


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