Embrace Wu Wei, the Art of Doing Nothing

Discover how effortless action may reach spiritual heights.

Embrace Wu Wei, the Art of Doing Nothing | Discover how effortless action may reach spiritual heights.

Think about when you did something with total absorption. It was effortless, easy, and time seemed to stop. This is wu wei, the Chinese concept of “effortless action.”  This is a place of harmony, creativity, and oneness, and is a state of mind that everyone can achieve and practice daily.

Wu wei, described as a higher state of consciousness, is a part of Daoism, whose central philosophy is known as The Way according to the blog alyjuma. The idea of Wu Wei was first described in 600 bce.

When you have no thoughts of self or desires, you may be filled with an emptiness, tranquility, and a sense of being in the moment. In this place of non-doing, the self and environment merge to become one.

Wu wei is a concept that should be embraced and nurtured, especially when living in a busy world of constant activity and multi-tasking.There is no urge to check your Facebook feed or to visit the fridge, for you have no lack that results in a feeling of hunger. In wu wei, you flow in the zone and your work becomes effortless.

Inviting wu wei into your day
There are ways to embrace wu wei, according to the blog, and it all starts with relaxation and mindfulness. When you next feel that you are in the zone, observe it. Ask yourself what you were working on when you felt this, what time of day it was, what you ate before, and how you slept. These may provide clues you need in order to reproduce this state of mind again.

Ideally, you can be in the flow each day while performing routine tasks. If you are doing something that is too difficult or is not interesting, wu wei will be harder to achieve. However, if you are able to truly immerse yourself in a task, you can perform with maximum efficiency, according to the School of Life video. It is akin to water that is submissive yet strong, eroding tough surfaces with a persistent ebb and flow.

Wu wei and creativity
Aside from routine tasks, wu wei is beautifully mirrored in the creative experience, be it through music, dance, creative writing, or painting. True art is more than a simple imitation of the external world; it comes from inspiration deep inside which then flows out in creative expression.

To those totally immersed in rational Western thinking, this Daoist concept is a state of mind that may feel foreign yet it is necessary. People may become stuck by unyielding ideas that no longer fit, or may be prevented from trying out new things or from having feelings of spontaneity or happiness.

Wu wei can help you access your “flow” so that you can enjoy life and feel calm and carefree, according to kongdanfoundation. For once you discover your true place, the art of doing nothing is there waiting for you. Wu wei is a bit like la dolce vita (the sweet life), but it is deeper and sweeter. What is more, when you are mindful, you will see that wu wei presents itself to you in many forms throughout each day. Accept, be in the zone, and float along in the current of life’s stream.

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