In our December newsletter I mentioned one of Taoism’s most important and famous concepts, that of wu wei (pronounced “woo-way”). Since the practice of qigong is strongly influenced by the teachings of Lao Tzu in the Taoist classic the Tao te Ching it is important to explore the concept of wu wei to help us understand more deeply our qigong roots and practice.
Wu wei is sometimes translated as “non-doing” or “non-action.” It is also translated to mean the “action of non-action” and therein lies the paradox. This refers to the cultivation of a way of seeing the world where our actions are effortlessly aligned with the cycles of the natural world. It is a way of going with the flow in a relaxed and aware manner.
“Wu wei does not focus on action or inaction but simply on action that does not involve struggle.”
Practicing wu wei may seem like a challenge in our fast-paced society. However, it is something we can practice anytime and anywhere since it is a practice of letting the ego rest and allowing the natural order of things to unfold.
Much has been written and discussed about wu wei for centuries. I hope this simple description of wu wei will lend support in our qigong practice and in viewing our world with more ease.