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5.0 von 5 Sternen The virtue of the small
If Pooh is the embodiment of the Tao, the Piglet is the embodiment of the Te, the Chinese word and principle for Virtue. Benjamin Hoff, in his first book `The Tao of Pooh' talks about the religio-philosophical tradition of Taoism, and in this follow-up book, he explores in more detail with Piglet, who felt neglected in the first volume, but felt it only natural...
Veröffentlicht am 23. Dezember 2005 von FrKurt Messick

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1.0 von 5 Sternen Que?
Before reading 'The Tao of Pooh' I assumed it was a long philosophical tract scattered with quotes from the 'Winnie the Pooh' books to give it a gimmicky marketing push. It wasn't - it was a genuinely interesting introduction to Taoism, with a valid Pooh connection. It didn't push its viewpoint as being better than any other, and was thus inoffensive.
'The Te of...
Veröffentlicht am 28. April 2000 von Mr. A. Pomeroy


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1.0 von 5 Sternen Que?, 28. April 2000
Von 
Mr. A. Pomeroy (Wiltshire, England) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
(REAL NAME)   
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
Before reading 'The Tao of Pooh' I assumed it was a long philosophical tract scattered with quotes from the 'Winnie the Pooh' books to give it a gimmicky marketing push. It wasn't - it was a genuinely interesting introduction to Taoism, with a valid Pooh connection. It didn't push its viewpoint as being better than any other, and was thus inoffensive.
'The Te of Piglet', on the other hand, is terrible - a lengthy rant about the authors' pet hates, scattered with a few quotes from the 'Winnie the Pooh' books as dressing.
The author has two points. Firstly, that small things are not necessarily insignificant (a great point, one which just took me six words to express), and secondly, that feminists, scientists, critics, technology, businessmen, microwave ovens, negative viewpoints, unhelpful opinions and bad thoughts will be swept away in an inevitable cleansing, leaving the author and his friends to inherit the earth.
And the author is right, constantly. If you think otherwise, you're contributing to the forces of negativity, and will be swept aside. There is no other way. It's this kind of thing that puts me off religion.
However, to fill the book up, the author seems to wind himself into a twisted rage, berating everything in the world which is not him, for being shallow, self-obsessed, and destructive. Eventually he becomes angry, and loses perspective and self-awareness, and you start to notice silly things that you would have ignored beforehand. Eventually I imagined the author as an bearded real-ale drinker muttering bitter thoughts to himself in a house in California, and at that point I couldn't take anything he said seriously again.
For example, slotted in near the end is the tale of a great king who liked the sound of a nightingale singing so much that, when presented with a flawless clockwork replica, he neglected the real nightingale until it flew away. Over time the clockwork nightingale broke, and the king felt sad until the real nightingale returned. This is presented as great wisdom, but my initial response was 'this is froth'. What does it mean? Presumably the author sees it as a cautionary tale against the evils of metal, but, if you think about it for a moment and don't accept it blindly, it means nothing at all, it's just an empty quote with the illusion of depth. Much the same could be said about the rest of the book - we are constantly told to learn from real life, whilst being presented by wisdom presented as narrative descriptions of life in Ancient China.
Whilst 'Pooh' had a light touch, 'Piglet' attempts to bludgeon the reader with the author's viewpoints, and by the final chapter I felt like reading through the nasty bits of 'American Psycho' again, just to calm down.
Take Eeyore, for example. He's a loveable misanthrope, a welcome note of gloom in the 'Winnie the Pooh' books, who seems bitter but, deep down, means well. The author hates him, however. Really, truly hates him. He doesn't just disapprove of him, he actually hates him.
'The Tao of Pooh' is a great book - even if you're a cynical soul, after reading it you can accept Taoism and respect it, even if you don't agree with its way of seeing the world. 'The Te of Piglet', on the other hand, will make you want to attack the author and his beliefs with a broom.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen The virtue of the small, 23. Dezember 2005
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
If Pooh is the embodiment of the Tao, the Piglet is the embodiment of the Te, the Chinese word and principle for Virtue. Benjamin Hoff, in his first book `The Tao of Pooh' talks about the religio-philosophical tradition of Taoism, and in this follow-up book, he explores in more detail with Piglet, who felt neglected in the first volume, but felt it only natural considering he's a Very Small Animal (and life is not always easy for a Very Small Animal), the concept of virtue, or the Te.
The Te is not so easily contained in the word virtue, however. `It is instead a quality of special character, spiritual strength, or hidden potential unique to the individual--something that comes from the Inner Nature of things. And something, we might add, that the individual who possess it may be quite unaware of--as is the case with Piglet through most of the Pooh stories.'
Of course, virtue un-enacted is a Very Small Virtue, indeed, so it become the responsibility of those with a Te to bring it forward in transformation. A Very Small Virtue, like a Very Small Animal, can be a good thing if the dreaded Heffalump comes by -- it might not get squashed; it might be ignored. But this is not the way of the Te.
The Te such as Piglet's can overcome distraction such as the Tigger Tendency -- the tendency to bounce off in different directions simply because they feel good. It can also help overcome the increasing drive toward acquisition (a Very Small Animal doesn't need Very Many Things; a society with cares for Virtue must not have an overpowering care for Things).
The modern person tends to overlook the small virtues in favour of Progress, in pursuit of reaching a potential, which `is seen as an increase of tools'. Of course, with more tools we can do more stuff! And with more stuff, we can make yet more tools!
The trend is not only material, but academic and philosophical, too. `Western philosophy, having little connection with everyday living, is (to this observer, at least) comparatively egocentric and impractical, with much Arguing and Theorising, and much bounding back and forth across the intellectual landscape--a pleasant, part-time diversion formulated by and aimed at the likes of Owl, Rabbit, and sometimes Eeyore, but not particularly supportive of the likes of Piglet and Pooh.'
Of course, one has an image to maintain, too. This is the point of existence of some Owls, who must be able to spell TUESDAY to gain respect, even if they postulate that any 'variant' of the spelling is sufficient. (Some lessons are repeated from The Tao of Pooh, because they are Very Important Lessons, and some people won't read both books, being of Very Little Time).
The Te is subtle and compassionate. It is not vocal, it is not loud. Lao-tse wrote, 'The skilled worker leaves no tracks' -- the worker is so at one with nature that no disturbance is made. Certainly making a broad show of Virtue is to cause a disturbance.
And yet, it is vital that virtue be prominent in action and life. What is a Very Small Animal to do?
After much more searching and being, Piglet arrives at the stage where he can finally be positive, to ward off the Eeyore effects, and thus attract positive with positive, attract virtue with virtue, in a low-key and subtle form. And finally, Piglet, a Very Small Animal of seemingly no consequence, attains recognition: `Piglet, Esq. My Dear Sir: The Board of Regents of Sandhurst University wish me to inform you of their desire to grant you an honorary degree of Brave Animal (B.A.). We should be most pleased if you could be present at the awards ceremony, which shall be held on...'
Piglets in the world, unite! Take a lesson, perhaps from one of the most Piglet-y figures of our century, Mohandas Gandhi -- a frail and shy man, frightened by crowds and a Very Small Animal in many ways. But with a great and irresistably subtle Te, virtue, that defeated the greatest empire on earth (a Very Big Animal indeed) without an army, and without backing down.
Every ending is a beginning. Now Piglet's tale is over. Now you must begin.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen What an argument, 24. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
I'm suprised that this book is loved and reviled so much by so many. It appears to be something that you either love or hate. I will agree with many of the reviews in that Hoff spends a good share of the book expressing his views on the modern world and that he can be a little more relaxed about it, being a Taoist and all. I believe the Tao Te Ching says "Do you want to improve the world? I do not think it can be done." In spite of his poor attitude I think he describes the concept of Te very well. Well worth a little opinionated comment or several.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Too Political, 30. Juni 2000
While I enjoyed the Tao of Pooh immensely, I felt that this second book was a bit of a let-down. If the author would have concentrated on the philosophical aspects alone, I could have enjoyed the book. As is, however, I think it would be just as simple to pick up some Green Party propaganda to get the same message. What a shame to debase such an inspirational topic.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen This book will change you!, 9. Mai 2000
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
This book takes a rather cynical approach on modern-day living. It reduces every aspect of Western thought to nothing and replaces it all with the Eastern concept of Taoism and its Virtue of the Small, or Te. Hoff explains clearly and concisely the various types of negative effects our society can have on people, and how this can be prevented by returning to simplicity. A most enjoyable read that will change your outlook on life forever.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen ugh, 28. April 2000
Von 
greglor "greglor" (Baltimore, MD United States) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
Benjamin Hoff got way out of control on this one. In his sequel to The Tao of Pooh, he rants and raves and displays decidedly un-Taoist characteristics. He spends far more time arrogantly lecturing the ignorant, unwashed masses, than describing Taoism. Although he is clearly quite proud of his accomplishments in writing the Tao of Pooh, this followup is not worthy of the first book. For a better introduction into the principles of Taoism, read Eva Wong's translation of The Seven Taoist Masters.
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2.0 von 5 Sternen Should be entitled "The Rantings of Hoff", 18. Oktober 1999
Von Ein Kunde
I was first introduced to the Tao through Hoff's "The Tao of Pooh". It opened my eyes to a world that I did not know existed. My disappointment in "The Te of Piglet" was equally great. I expected a treatise that dealt with Te in the same manner Hoff dealt with Tao. Instead I found it to be not much more than a personal platform from which Hoff could vent his anger and frustrations. As a scientist, I found many of his remarks to be insulting. Scientists are not out to merely catalog and pigeon-hole the world into a set of neat facts, but to understand the universe as an integrated, harmonious system. Hoff's condemnation of everything he personally does not like is not very much in keeping with the Taoist philosophy of "accept everything, reject nothing".
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Good examination of Te, but vents his anger too much, 21. September 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
I absolutly was enthralled with "The Tao of Pooh." So when I saw this book I snapped it up. "The Te of Piglet" could have been an ideal companion to "The Tao of Pooh," if only Hoff could have stuck to philosophy. His rantings against everyone and everything dragged the book down. When he stuck to the subject, this boook was every bit as magical as the first. I enjoyed it, but then I skipped over the lectures.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen If you do not like the truth, keep your eyes closed!, 17. Mai 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
I actually read this book before I read the Tao of Pooh and I have to say that I enjoyed this one as much but for different reasons. Many people say this book has a "bitter, angry" taste to it "compared to The Tao of Pooh". Did they want to hear the same message again? While they say the Tao book was more uplifting and this was not, they miss the whole point. Not everything you read will make you feel good about yourself or the world you live in. Don't expect every book to stroke your ego and your self-righteousness. It is unrealistic to think so and will be inevtably disappointing. I read this book at a time when i felt very hopeless, very small and very insignificant. This book insprired me to stop wasting energy and time on things that will never make me happy anyways. Not everything I found out about myself was very "good" but then I was just glad that I was starting to understand myself. Everything in this world must have a balance to survive. There is no good without bad, no light without darkness. Instead of whining about what you don't understand, try to figure it out. And hey!? If you don't want to...why waste your time (and everyone elses') "waaah"-ing about it. If anything, read this book for the many pearls of wisdom, the "Pooh" story inserts, the parables and the profound poetry and songs. If you let it, this book will entertain you AND make you think
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Great book, lessons for life, 11. Mai 1999
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Te of Piglet (Taschenbuch)
Benjamin Hoff has created a masterpiece on human understanding and an inspiring view of the world as a whole. He combines Taoist theory and a sense of activism to portray Piglet, one of the world's most beloved and cherished characters, as the epitome of existence. I loved it!
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The Te of Piglet
The Te of Piglet von Benjamin Hoff (Taschenbuch - 1. November 1993)
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