Benjamin Hoff

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Benjamin Hoff (born 1946) is an American author.


The Tao of Pooh (1982)[edit]

  • When you discard arrogance, complexity, and a few other things that get in the way, sooner or later you discover that simple, childlike, and mysterious secret known to those of the Uncarved Block: Life is Fun.
    • The Tao of Who?
  • Now one rather annoying thing about scholars is that they are always using Big Words that some of us can't understand...and one sometimes gets the impression that those intimidating words are there to keep us from understanding. That way, the scholars can appear Superior, and will not likely be suspected of Not Knowing Something. After all, from the scholarly point of view, it's practically a crime not to know everything.
    • Spelling Tuesday.
  • Now, scholars can be very useful and necessary, in their own dull and unamusing way. They provide a lot of information. It's just that there is Something more, and that Something More is what life is really all about.
    • Spelling Tuesday.
  • Cleverness, after all, has its limitations. Its mechanical judgments and clever remarks tend to prove inaccurate with passing time, because it doesn't look very deeply into things to begin with.
    • Cottleston Pie.
  • Practically speaking, if timesaving devices really saved time, there would be more time available to us now than ever before in history. But, strangely enough, we seem to have less time than even a few years ago. It's really great fun to go someplace where there are no timesaving devices because, when you do, you find that you have lots of time. Elsewhere, you're too busy working to pay for machines to save you time so you won't have to work so hard.
    • Bisy Backson.
  • The Christmas presents once opened are Not So Much Fun as they were while we were in the process of examining, lifting, shaking, thinking about, and opening them. Three hundred sixty-five days later, we try again and find that the same thing has happened. Each time the goal is reached, it becomes Not So Much Fun, and we're off to reach the next one, then the next one, then the next.
    • Bisy Backson.
  • What could we call the moment before we begin to eat the honey? Some would call it anticipation, but we think it's more than that. We would call it awareness. It's when we become happy and realize it, if only for an instant. By Enjoying the Process, we can stretch that awareness out so that it's no longer a moment, but covers the whole thing. Then we can have a lot of fun. Just like Pooh.
    • Bisy Backson.
  • In order to take control of our lives and accomplish something of lasting value, sooner or later we need to Believe. We don't need to shift our responsibilities onto the shoulders of some deified Spiritual Superman, or sit around and wait for Fate to come knocking at the door. We simply need to believe in the power that's within us, and use it. When we do that, and stop imitating others and competing against them, things begin to work for us.
    • That Sort of Bear.
  • Do you really want to be happy? You can begin by being appreciative of who you are and what you've got. Do you want to be really miserable? You can begin by being discontented.
    • That Sort of Bear.
  • Abstract cleverness of the mind only separates the thinker from the world of reality, and that world, the Forest of Real Life, is in a desperate condition now because of too many who think too much and care too little. In spite of what many minds have thought themselves into believing, that mistake cannot continue for much longer if everything is going to survive. The one chance we have to avoid certain disaster is to change our approach, and learn to value wisdom and contentment. These are things that are being searched for anyway, through Knowledge and Cleverness, but they do not come from Knowledge and Cleverness. They never have, and they never will. We can no longer afford to look so desperately hard for something in the wrong way and in the wrong place. If Knowledge and Cleverness are allowed to go on wrecking things, they will before much longer destroy all life on this earth as we know it, and what little may temporarily survive will not be worth looking at, even if it were possible for us to do so.
    • The Now of Pooh.

The Te of Piglet (1992)[edit]

  • There is something in each of us that wants us to be unhappy. It creates in our imaginations problems that don't exist - quite often causing them to be true. It exaggerates problems that are already there. It reinforces low self-esteem and lack of respect for others. It destroys pride in workmanship, order, and cleanliness. It turns meetings into Confrontations, expectations into Dread, opportunities into Danger, stepping stones into Stumbling Blocks. It can be seen at work in grimaces and frowns, which pull the muscles of the face forward and down, speeding the aging process. It contaminates the mind behind the face with its negative energy and spreads outward, like a disease. And then it comes back, projected and reflected by other unhappy minds and faces. And on it goes.
    • The Eeyore Effect
  • Eeyores are Realists, they say. But reality is what one makes it. And the more negative reality one nurtures and creates, the more of it one has.
    • The Eeyore Effect
  • Without difficulties, life would be like a stream without rocks and curves - about as interesting as concrete. Without problems, there can be no personal growth, no group achievement, no progress for humanity. But what matters about problems is what one does with them. Eeyores don't overcome problems. No, it's the other way around.
    • The Eeyore Effect
  • In reality, heroes are heroic because they, despite their weaknesses - and sometimes because of them - do great things. If they were perfect, they wouldn't be here in earth's classroom.
    • The Eeyore Effect
  • When a stream comes to some stones in its path, it doesn't struggle to remove them, or fight against them, or think about them. It just goes around them. And as it does, it sings. Water responds to What's There with effortless action.
    • Things as They Are
  • What can be just as hard to see as problems-in-the-making is that a good many "problems" aren't really problems to begin with. People who don't see situations for what they are often struggle against difficulties that aren't there and create difficulties in the process. Or turn small difficulties into large ones.
    • Things as They Are
  • Transforming negative into positive, you work with whatever comes your way. If others throw bricks at you, build a house. If they throw tomatoes, start a vegetable stand. You can often change a situation simply by changing your attitude toward it.
    • The Day of Piglet

External links[edit]

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