I am reading "Nature, Man and Woman" by Alan Watts and I am not able to grasp the meaning of the sentence highlighted below fully.
There is a prevalent belief in the West that intellectual and philosophical pursuits are unessential ornaments of far less value than active and technological accomplishments. This attitude is in great danger of being confused with the Eastern view that real knowledge is nonverbal and beyond the reach of concepts. But our actions are almost invariably directed by a philosophy of ends and values, and to the extent that this is unconscious it is liable to be bad philosophy with disastrous active consequences. The so-called "nonintellectually" of the east lies as far above thought as mere activism lies below it.
I am quite confused about the meaning that the word "thought" has in this context.
Also, I am not able to understand whether the words "above" and "below" have a connotation of "good/better" and "bad/worse" respectively.