If loosely translated, the word ‘Wu Wei’ means non-action. It sounds like a sweet invitation to relax or worse, become lazy. However, the art of Wu Wei is something totally different. It refers to the noblest kind of action. According to the philosophy of Taoism it means to follow the way.
According to the central text of Taoism, the way never acts yet nothing remains undone. This is the paradox of Wu Wei. It doesn’t mean not acting. It simply means effortless action or action-less action. The central essence of the concept is to be at peace while being engaged with the most frenetic of tasks. It enables people to carry out such tasks effortlessly yet with maximum skill and efficiency.
The Theory Of Wu Wei
You must have heard of the concept of Laissez-faire. If you know you must be wondering what Wu Wei has to do with the idea of Laissez-faire. However, the essence of both these concepts is the same. Laissez-faire is mostly used in the economic context. However, its idea of non-intervention is what Wu Wei tells us too. This non-intervention is with the flow of nature. The art of Wu Wei is to believe that we can’t change the nature of things, the flow of events, nor can we force our solutions to the worldly ways or take control over them.
Something of the art of Wu Wei is also contained in the concept of being in the zone or being one with what we are doing. The concept of Wu Wei brings peace. This peace shouldn’t be confused with external peace or satisfaction. The art of Wu Wei is to be at peace with oneself, to be in a state of profound concentration and flow.
You’ll inculcate the art of Wu Wei as you strive to make your behavior as spontaneous and inevitable as possible. It almost resembles the natural world.
Special Virtues To Learn The Art Of Wu Wei
The concept of Wu Wei aids us in reaching inner peace. So, there are some virtues that Wu Wei proposes to reach that state of fulfillment and satisfaction. Some of those virtues are listed below.
Simplicity Reveals The Pure Beauty Of Life
Simplicity is a key virtue. Life gets burdensome when we complicate things and the way we look at things. In this fast-paced world, we are always running after success. We’ve almost forgotten how to relax, enjoy or be grateful for the little things. Living a simple life aids us to be aware of our surroundings, releases us from the loop of success and failure and stabilizes our life.
Wants And Desires Consume Our Soul
Release your soul from the vicious loop of desires and wants. These qualities lead us to earn excess in our lives and excesses are bound to leave us unhappy because no matter how much excess you have, you’ll never be satisfied. So, if you can’t get rid or balance your wants you’ll never learn the art of Wu Wei.
Patience And Observation
If you want to learn to not interfere with the flow of life, then this is the most essential quality. You need to find it in yourself to wait, to be patient for things to unfold in its own time. This is not an easy quality to inculcate because your mind is programmed to interfere, to take action, and to meddle with things. So, there will be a lot of resistance, but if you learn to have patience and observe the way of life, you’ll learn to find inner peace.
The art of Wu Wei has the power to improve your life. It tells us to accept change, be one with yourself, and to believe that time will heal everything.