To be a Taoist means many things to many people. To be a practitioner of Contemporary Taoism simply means to have realised that we are all minute parts of an indescribably large Whole (the Tao), and to choose therefore to 'Flow Like Water' and live in a spontaneous, natural manner. This blog is about: Personal Growth / Spiritual Development as guided by the principles of Eastern Philosophy, particularly modern philosophical Taoism; Developing constructive habits and achieving success with minimal effort; Meditation - Taoist, Zen or otherwise. See 'What In Lao Tzu's Name is a Contemporary Taoist?'

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Tao of Internet Possibilities.

Today I am grinding through an assignment for the online university course I have started this year. It is a BA (internet studies) and I am so far finding it both challenging and rewarding.

I find the potential that the internet/www offers us all amazing. For example, I have written a book, it combines many 'genres' (or rather, subjects), one of them being Taoism. Now, I intend to get it published and out into the marketplace, one way or another. This of course, has been made so much easier by the internet; it is common knowledge that if one cannot get a 'reputable' publisher interested (which hopefully I will) then one can inexpensively self-publish, and also sell direct to internet users all over the world through Amazon, lulu, etc etc.

But the question remains - how to reach an interested audience?

Well, in preparation I have been making a mental list of ways to market my book (or music, or special Taoist meditation socks, it doesn't matter what) and there really are so many ways. Little ways. For example, I was just flicking through the results for the word 'Taoism' in the Yahoo directory of Discussion Boards - there are a lot of people out there talking about the Tao! Now, I like adding my two cents worth here and there, and in doing so viola! I spark (some) interest in who I am and what I have to offer, and some people (some, NOT all) will follow my link, and some (NOT all) will read/purchase/download/listen/look etc what I have to offer. I believe this is sometimes called micro-marketing or narrow-casting (but I am not that up on marketing-speak so this could be wrong). Anyway, I already do this from time to time to attract traffic to my websites, and it definitely works.

Suffice to say, I am very excited about my little supernatural thriller. It features a Taoist hero with the ability to turn invisible, fly, and shoot chi out his palms - who wouldn't get excited about that? ;)

Yeah Baby! I am totally looking forward to 'getting it out there' into the hands of the reading public!

But now I must get back to work on my assignment.

Flow Like Water...

Monday, January 30, 2006

Random Drive-by Fruiting!

If the Lunch Lady Taoist can do it, then so can I. Do what? See the wonder in the ordinary. Be zen about work. I wasn't very zen yesterday at all, not unless you call getting grumpy and swearing a lot zen.

I don't have time to write much now, but I must tell this little story.

Yesterday as I was riding my squeaky, rusty bike to work, I did what I said I would do in the post below and 'got positive' about it all. So there I was, sanctimoniously thanking the Universe for Life when I saw a bright orange object go sailing past just in front of my handle-bars.

An orange! Some cheeky git in a car going the other way tried to hit me with a piece of fruit. It smashed against the curb and would have definitely hurt if it hit me. Buggers!

Talk about straw dogs (Tao Te Ching, look it up, I don't have time to find a link). Pray all you want, recite your positive affirmations, thank 'Spirit' for 'Life' - doesn't mean you aren't about to bonked on the head by a piece of full-pelt fruit!

Although, admittedly, it DID miss me, didn't it...

Sunday, January 29, 2006

The Tao of Imperfection

Hardcore Zen

I must be honest and say that I haven't had time to read this yet but it looks interesting. I am off to work now, not the kind of work that I would like to be doing, not my LIFE work, but just my pay-for-life-work.

As I prepare to get going, stuffing toast into my mouth, cringing at the thought of grumpy cafe customers and a day spent staring at a sink, I have the usual knot tightening in my guts. But I have bills to pay, and until the day that my life-work starts paying them, which I intend will be soon, I have to go and suffer the pain.

I want to kick and scream and pout and refuse to go, but instead I will ride my bike to work, and on the way I will thank the stars for my life. I will think about all of my many shortcomings, and thank the heavens for the oppurtunity to be who I am. We all have to work, we all let ourselves down, the trick is to let it go, to accept your life, and all its imperfections, as being perfect now.

Flow Like Water.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Inspiring article

How to Build a High-Traffic Web Site (or Blog)

Although this is an article about web site optimisation (kind of) I found Steve Pavlina's attitude very inspiring, especially seeing as he (claims) to make a good living out his blog.

Point 10 is the most important, as the author himself says, and it must be true for any service or business - the number one priority should be to help others somehow. That is what I aim to do, help others by doing what comes naturally. In fact I already do it, and so do you. If you look carefully at your life I am sure you will find that this is true.

I was particularly inspired by his point that he does not write for computers (i.e. web crawlers) but for humans, and that he does not run a blog purely to be a portal by just linking to lots of stuff. I have been guilty of the latter sometimes, mostly from laziness. I am now inspired to re-commit to CONTENT. Thank you to those who read this blog on a regular basis, you can look forward to a revitalised Contemporary Taoist in the immediate future.

Flow Like Water...

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Taoism and the Arts of China

Here's a nice link: Taoism and the Arts of China

Anyway, as I am supposed to be doing a uni assignment right now, I (logically) thought I might whack in a blog entry as a means of procrastination.

Actually, procrastination can be a very useful tool. It relates to the concept of Wu Wei (or however you spell it) which roughly translates 'To do without doing' or 'Effortless action'.

For example, the other day I was, strangely, fielding off three job offers, and in general was very confused as I couldn't really see the woods for the trees. I couldn't see one option proving to be more beneficial than the others. So? I did nothing. I kept people waiting for days on end, said nothing, and tried to forget about it. I simply waited for the answer to appear.

Eventually, it did. I got up yesterday morning, after doing a little 'still in bed' meditation, and viola! there it was!

The answer was obvious, and required me to do very little, as it happened. Perfect.

Do less, achieve more.

NB. There are now a few dead links from this blog as I have been 'doing less' about it ;) ... I am intending to give it a good old refresher at some point but can't say when as I have several pots boiling right now, including finally putting the finishing touches on my supernatural thriller that FEATURES A TAOIST HERO. Meanwhile check out The Way of Long Life and Long Vision for a really good perspective.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Zen Koans -

Zen Koans -

Monday, January 09, 2006

The Way of long life and long vision

The Way of long life and long vision

Rather good Taoist blog, reminding me that I could put a little more effort into this one. Actually I think I will be soon.

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