What are you reading?
I recently saw a list of books you need to read in your twenties. I have read a fair amount of them. Although not in my twenties because some of these books weren't even written back then.
Geez I'm fucking old.
What am I reading right now? The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff.
I had plucked it off my girlfriend's bookshelf the other day and was immediately taken in by it.
It's a clever premise: to teach the basic principles of taoism through a children's book.
My own attempt at such a thing - to write a children's story with adult themes - was far less successful.
Hoff does a splendid job of profiling the characteristics of the key players from the pessimistic, always bitching Eeyore and the scholarly know-it-all Owl to the always-on-the-go Tigger and the confused, simpled-minded Piglet.
And then there's Pooh, who just is.
Too often, Hoff points out, man does not adhere to the laws of nature. Rather he spends most of his time creating laws that, ironically, go against these basic laws.
Tao, as he points out, is about working in harmony with these laws of nature. Sometimes the path from point A to point B is not a straight line. Some people will change everything and everyone but themselves.
Insert Christianity and same sex marriage here: trying to change something you don't like instead of changing yourself. It is trying to change a law of nature, which you can't do. But you could change yourself and accept the fact that people don't chose their sexual orientation. One should look inside, to oneself, instead of "interfering with practically every form of life on earth."
Pooh, on the other hand, does not judge rather he accepts the idiosyncrysities of his friends and finds a way to turn a negative characteristic into a positive one.
In the Pooh Way, "things happen in the right way at the right time when you let them, when you work with circumstances" instead of Eeyore-atic "this isn't suppose to happen this way."
Back in November I took the plunge and jumped into being a full-time freelancer. This is not to say I am strictly taking writing jobs. Because that would be limiting. That goes against the Pooh Way. Instead, I choose to work jobs that use my skill set to the best of my abilities, in work that is fulfilling, be it caterting, film production or the aforementioned writing. Despite the absence of a steady paycheck, I am far less stressed and quite happy. Regardless of the fact that I have no idea where my next paycheck or job will come from nor when it will be.
By all accounts, I should be going bat-shit crazy.
This book has provided plenty of insight. One thing it has made me realized: I am Pooh.
It also made me realized I have been ignoring my inner Pooh for the better part of 15 years, working against the laws of nature.
Pooh, I am glad you are back my friend.
Now let's go for a walk and listen to the birds sing happy songs... the laundry can wait.