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The Tao of Pooh Hardcover – Mar 7 1997


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Adult (March 7 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525244581
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525244585
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 13.9 x 1.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (147 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #54,528 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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4.3 out of 5 stars
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Saults on Jan. 31 2004
Format: Paperback
One could really take this book as a mixed bag of lessons. In a way, Hoff completely accidentally sets himself up as the ideal example of the opposite of a Taoist viewpoint. His portrayals of Winnie the Pooh as a simple, loving, accepting and calm creature are fairly on the mark. Though a tad simplistic, Pooh is accurately depicted as following several key Taoist virtues that are quite fundemental to such philosophy. At the same time, however, Hoff seems to scream for attention to his "higher learning" and aesceticism. Seeming to view himself a some type of guru on the subject, he makes a few jabs at Western learning in a painfully typical knee-jerk counterculturism manner. Many authors and artists in the past have attempted to seem profound simply by lashing out at anything conventional. After all, counterintuitive means profound, right? Unfortunately, no. In his rather selfrighteous, condemning, and finger-pointing manner, Hoff inadvertently deepens the lessons of the book. In his pretension, he deepens the contrast of the tranquil and nonjudgemental Pooh, setting him up as all the more admirable and showing just what sort of "more enlightened and at peace than thou" thinking this peaceful way of life stands against.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Karl - Tiny Thought Guy TOP 500 REVIEWER on Sept. 22 2013
Format: Paperback
To be honest, I am not a big "Winnie the Pooh" fan, and I was going to put this book down after the first 30 pages, but I am thankful that I kept reading.

Benjamin Hoff does a fantastic job of explaining Taoism in an easy to read, intellectually stimulating format. In addition, even if you don’t want to specifically know about Taoism there are some real pearls of wisdom in this book and the application of these concepts will definitely impact your life.

A must read.
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By Michael Thomas on Sept. 27 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Intellectual and funny and pratical. Very easy and engaging read that you can instantly take something away from chapter to chapter.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was an explanation of Taoist philosophy, as told through the mouths of the classic Winnie the Pooh characters. It is very interesting reading. It makes learning Taoism enjoyable.
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By lasher on Dec 14 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book is simply magnificent. I've been reading the Tao for years and never had I made the correlation of Pooh and Taoism. From the start you see how Hoff ties in Pooh to the ancient chinese philosophy, and having Pooh as a living and breathing character in the book helps. Pooh injects his simple nature and gentle humor into everything which is just so.. well, Taoist.
I found myself entralled by how wonderful and charming Hoff made the book. He made it's reading an enjoyable process.
Now for those of you who are new to Taoism or having trouble with its principle nature this will be a helpful book. I read some of the reviews of those who didn't understand the book or perhaps Taoism in general. Western minds often think too hard about everything. If you can relax and simply accept the book and its message as it is presented you should see its beauty.
Taoism is like the sky is blue and the grass is green, it is simple and amazing and Pooh makes a great representative to deliver its teachings.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By "mayyourgodgowithyou" on April 2 2004
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful book with a few minor flaws. Even if you have no wish to follow Tao, it can be taken as a fresh and light-hearted look at many of the timeless truisms we may already know but choose to ignore. It's also a jolly read.
So it's a shame to quibble, but quibble I will. The first tale we are given is that of the vinegar tasters. Unfortunately Benjamin Hoff fails to heed the lesson as he repeatedly grimaces at the bitter taste left by western civilisation. Some sections are even likely to irritate (see other reviewers).
p.s. some of my favourite ways of doing nothing include running, swimming and the gym; so I don't know what Hoff would make of me.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sam Barthy on Oct. 30 2001
Format: Paperback
Let's face it - Taoism is difficult for Western minds to understand. For me, it exemplifies the difference between simple and easy. Taoism is so basic and simple in its concepts, that it can be nearly impossible for a busy Western brain to accept. Well, whether you are looking for an introduction to Taoism or well along your own path, this book is an indispensable addition to your library.
The idea here is simple - Benjamin Hoff uses these perfect Pooh stories to explain the fundamental concepts of Taoist belief. Whether he is pointing out our contradictory beliefs or educating us on finding our paths, he does so with humor and compassion, always smart and simple. One of my favorite examples of our silly Western contradictions is where he talks about time-saving devices. In Western culture, we are constantly surrounded with time-saving devices, from alarm clocks to microwaves to computers to cell phones... yet we rarely have enough time. Then what happens when you go to a place where there are no time-saving devices? All of a sudden you have all the time in the world!
Have you read from the Tao Te Ching? I have spent hours contemplating one tiny passage before it even started to sink into my thick skull. What a difference it is to have Pooh and his crew as your guides! Hoff brings new meaning and understanding to these texts, creating a strong foundation for you to continue along your way. I have recommended this book to friends in all walks of life and with varying degrees of education and I always have received a more than enthusiastic reaction.
For me, the Toa of Pooh is as much a place as it is a book. I can read a chapter and suddenly find myself in a more relaxed space, maybe a little higher up where I can get a little more of the big picture. I hope it can do the same for you.
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