During the 1950s and the 1960s, Alan Watts (1915-1973) had a weekly radio series titled "Way Beyond the West" in which he explored Eastern ways and culture. This volume contains material adapted and edited by Alan Watts's son Mark. During the 1950s, a group of California artists and writers began exploring "the Beat way of life." They enjoyed creativity and were outspoken critics of American consumerism. Alan Watts explains why these Beatniks brought out the ire of straight arrow materialists. Of course, their love of loafing was in sync with the Zen appreciation of the uncomplicated life. In his study of the Eastern path, Watts points out that the transformation of consciousness is not easy. It is the fruit of "an arduous course of spiritual and psychological discipline." One of the best chapters in this book is Zen and the Art of the Controlled Accident where the author explores indirection and the Eastern view of the floating world that vanishes. Oddly enough Zen and the Beat Way is thoroughly Western Zen — it is testament to the enduring impact of Alan Watts on contemporary spiritual sekers.