THE TAO OF “POOH”

 

The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff looks just like a kid’s book at first glance. The book is interesting in the fact that it often reads as a kid’s book, but at the same time tells of complex philosophical ideas. Taoism isn’t just a religion, but also a collection of philosophical ideas so complex that even many of its followers don’t understand it. Hoff, through the simple world of Winnie the Pooh, brings these ideas into everyday life.

“When you wake up in the morning, Pooh,” said Piglet at last, “what’s the first thing you say to yourself?”
“What’s for breakfast? said Pooh. “What do you say, Piglet?”
“I say, I wonder what’s going to happen exciting today?” said Piglet.
Pooh nodded thoughtfully.
“It’s the same thing,” he said.

Through working in harmony with life’s circumstances, Taoist understanding changes what others may percieve as negative into something positive.

When you discard arrogance, complexity, and a few other things that get in the way, sooner or later you will discover that simple, childlike, and mysterious secret known to those of the Uncarved Block: Life is Fun.

The wise are not learned; the learned are not wise

A well-frog cannot imagine the ocean, nor can a summer insect conceive of ice. How then can a scholar understand the Tao? He is restricted by his own learning.

“Lots of people talk to animals,” said Pooh.
“Not that many listen though.”
“That’s the problem.”

You’d be surprised how many people violate this simple principle every day of their lives and try to fit square pegs into round holes, ignoring the clear reality that Things Are As They Are.

Everything has its own place and function. That applies to people, although many don’t seem to realize it, stuck as they are in the wrong job, the wrong marriage, or the wrong house. When you know and respect your Inner Nature, you know where you belong. You also know where you don’t belong.

” … but, no matter how he may seem to others, especially to those fooled by appearances, Pooh, the Uncarved Block, is able to accomplish what he does because he is simpleminded.”

” From the state of the Uncarved Block comes the ability to enjoy the simple and the quiet, the natural and the plain. Along with that comes the ability to do things spontaneously and have them work, odd as that may appear to others at times. As Piglet put it in Winnie-the-Pooh, “Pooh hasn’t much Brain, but he never comes to any harm. He does silly things and they turn out right.”

” Not like Pooh, the most effortless Bear we’ve ever seen.”
“Just How do you do it, Pooh?”
“Do What?” asked Pooh.
“Become so Effortless.”
“I don’t do much of anything,” he said.
“But all those things of yours get done.”
“They just sort of happen,” he said

” It’s not surprisng, therefore, that the Backson thinks of progress in terms of fighting and overcoming. One of his little idiosyncrasies, you might say. Of course real progress involves growing and developing, which involves changing inside, but that’s something the inflexible Backson is unwilling to do.”

“While Eeyore frets …
… and Piglet hesitates
… and Rabbit calculates
… and Owl pontificates
…Pooh just is.

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