Monday, September 22, 2008

The Tao of Pooh

The Tao of Pooh is a book written by Benjamin Hoff. The book is an introduction to Taoism, using the fictional character of Winnie the Pooh. Hoff also wrote ''The Te of Piglet'', a companion book.

Hoff uses Winnie the Pooh and the other characters from A. A. Milne's stories to explain the basic principles of philosophical Taoism. Winnie the Pooh, for example, represents the principles of Wu Wei or Wei Wu Wei. The book also includes translated excerpts from various Taoist texts, from authors such as Lao Zi and Zhuang Zi.

The book was on the New York Times bestseller list for 49 weeks and is used as required reading in some college courses. Stephen Mitchell, an author and Taoist scholar, criticizes the book for having little to do with Taoism yet believes it may be of value to "people who aren't ready for Lao-tzu". It has also been criticized for its bias against other religions and thoughts.

Hoff wrote the book at night and on weekends while working as tree pruner in Portland Japanese Garden in .

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