Alan Watts (1915-1973) was a speaker of over 400 talks and wrote 25 books in his lifetime, most concerning eastern thought and philosophy. He was was profoundly influenced by the East Indian philosophies of Vedanta and Buddhism, and by Taoist thought, which is reflected in Zen poetry and the arts of China and Japan. Alan Watts taught at the Academy of Asian Studies in San Francisco, and gave regular radio talks on KPFA, the Berkeley free radio station. In 1957, he published his bestselling Way of Zen which started his rise in popularity. He was an early subject in pioneering psychedelic trials, and, after recording two seasons of the public television series Eastern Wisdom and Modern Life, traveled to Japan several times and became a foremost interpreter of Eastern thought for the West.