Wu Wei is an early Taoist term meaning non-action or effortless action. It is often misunderstood as being still, physically. But the idea is more about the belief that we’re in sync with the Tao by intuitively grasping when and when not to act.
Metaphors for this kind of lifestyle often sound like this: Be effortless as a bamboo shoot bending with the wind. Indeed, this is how wu wei has been depicted by Western pop spiritualists like Alan Watts.¹
By way of contrast, some believe that simplified philosophies like this are nothing more than an attractive myth that help to cover up or turn a blind eye to unsavory realities….
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