Sunday, March 20, 2011

Tales from the Tao

I always like reading Taoist stories, and this is a book of forty of them, interspersed with poems and wise sayings, and some gorgeous black and white photography, done with a mix of black and silver inks. There were many stories in here I had not read before. The one thing that taints the book a little is that the editor/author Solala Towler mixes in his own stories side by side with stories from Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, Lieh Tzu, Ch'en Hsuan-Yu, and other ancient writers, which suggests a lack of humility that feels somewhat disharmonious with the spirit of the book. But perhaps I'm just being snobbish. I found the book pleasing and delightful to read -- and another reminder that form and content are equally important in creating experience.

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