800px-Opossum-Philadelphia-horz Wu-Wei, “the action of no action, ” is a central concept in Taoism (Daoism). I see the Opossum as a Wu-Wei god. Native Americans gave us the central myth;

Coyote finds Possum in a tree; both play tricksters and Possum wins by playing dead. Those who study tricksters know, tricksters can play the winner or loser role.

George Amos Dorsey put the Trickster tale in his book, Traditions of the Caddo. TS Eliot appears to have seen this paradox. The poet, penned Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats (It took stage as Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats). Wikipedia says Ezra Pound gave Eliot the “Old Possum” nickname (David Loy points out the Wu-Wei link, so we all may have seen this independently). The opossum image comes from Wikimedia. The center comes from the Wikipedia’s Coyote page. We have the coyote cousin in Florida, so the last image comes from the Red Wolf page.


One thought on “Wu Wei, A Possum In A Persimmon Tree

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