I wrote a book when I was in UCLA Film School in 1986 called THE DAO – COMING TO TERMS. It was my personal guide in life as a Taoist. (I will use Dao and Tao, Daoist and Taoist interchangeably… They are the same.) Taoism is the old Cantonese dialect not used in China anymore. I studied Chinese for several years and learned only the Mandarin Chinese new and current language of China which uses:
So if I mix them up… it’s to be more commercial. During the 1990s I switched everything to Mandarin… but now I’m switching much of my writings back to Cantonese for better understanding by the American reader.
The DAILY TAOIST show was an accident a week ago. I spent a couple days setting up my recording studio for recording my first audiobook in my new home in Lancaster, California. I decided to create a couple INSTAGRAM shows to warm up and create some promotion for the audiobook of TAO OF TAOISM – Using the Dao Te Ching to Improve Your Life.
I sat down in my Shaolin Kung Fu school, put on a Taoist robe and started talking. I was looking for a rhythm or way to share this book, Tao of Taoism, as an audiobook, knowing it had a huge impediment: it’s a question-and-answer type book. There are more blank spaces for writing the answers to the questions –than sentences.
Next, I realized that this is a book that cannot really be just an audiobook. The audiobook is a great kickstart, and perhaps more enlightening than most books of Taoism–but the book was written for the READER’s ANSWERS, more than just spraying people with Taoist enlightenment.
So I decided to add my own answers to the questions as I elaborated on the questions. This was cool. I got carried away–as expected, and I shared all kinds of personal and perhaps embarrassing stories about my life and ways of thinking. I think my personal stories added to the enlightenment, but the true purpose of this book is to extract the answers from the reader.
69 Free Videos for an Audiobook?
So Buddha Z tried several techniques and reading methods throughout the DAILY TAOIST series of 69 videos. I was quite surprised at the number 69 magically popping up. As a Zen Buddhist I do not believe in magic or superstition. But as a Taoist, numerology and superstitions have always found a home for romantics and beginning thinkers. #69 is aYin-Yang number (or #96… but #69 looks more like a Yin-Yang symbol.) Anyway, I’d finished reading the entire Tao of Taoism book, and recorded a couple commercials totalling 69 videos–I felt completed… a sense of completion… and perhaps a magical package that was destined to improve the world. (Are Taoists allowed to consider “destiny?”) Those various reading techniques appear to best served by reading a passage or question once; then reading it again slightly differently; then discussing it.
But then I realized that by asking people to meditate and consider their answers to some of the questions–if they were driving in a car: I may be distracting their attention too much. This concern was expressed in the DAILY TAOIST series several times by Buddha Z.
So it is imperative that the reader purchase the book and fill-in the blanks. Buddha Z emphasized that this is important for mental and spiritual growth because these answers will change over decades and illuminate to the reader their progress intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, and even physically as these questions address lifestyle issues. When you reread this book in a few years, it will inspire you differently and provide an awareness of your intellectual growth since then.
Notebook or Audiobook or Paperback?
The TAO OF TAOISM is available at Amazon.com? Well, for a while. The book was written in 1985 as a personal life-guide of Richard Del Connor while attending UCLA. In 1992 when Sifu Richard O’Connor (that was my name then) founded Shaolin Chi Mantis Traditional Buddhist Gongfu & Taoist Taijiquan: he rewrote the book for his newly founded Shaolin Kung Fu school. Then, in 2011 it was rewritten to be more commercially viable and useful to people outside of the Shaolin Chi Mantis schools. Many of the martial arts questions were removed.
Since 2005 when our TAI CHI BEGINNER book, TAI CHI INTERMEDIATE book, BUDDHA KUNG FU STUDENT MANUAL and SHAOLIN KUNG FU BEGINNER books were sold as ebooks: it proved very complicated for people to print the books themselves or muster the money and effort to have a photocopy store do it for them. Some students made some money printing them out and selling them to fellow students. I encouraged that. I’ve always encouraged my students to be entrepreneurs and let them buy supplies for the school to sell at a profit.
However, since this book cannot be accomplished by the reader in its ebook format–all distributors: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iBooks are going to have their ebooks deleted soon. (Probably gone by the time you read this?) I was considering an 8.5″ x 11″ paperback, but filling in the blanks is more difficult and the binding may break… So I will probably find a printer to create these notebook versions and mail them myself. Actually, I’d gladly pay one of my students a profitable amount for them to do this for me.
10 Notebooks of Tao Of Taoism Found
Wow, I found ten notebook versions of TAO OF TAOISM of the 18 copies I printed for a book event in 2014. All 18 of these notebooks were signed and dated by me at the time. I personally printed them, punched holes in the paper and inserted them in notebooks with covers, back covers, and THE SPINES which are difficult to insert into the notebook exteriors. Since these are ‘collector items’ I’m wondering what to do with them. I’m considering saving them for a few years more and then auctioning them when the TAO OF TAOISM is a book in demand. I’m hoping that I will not be the one personally printing and building these in the future.
Weird. I’ve got a great book, and I don’t know how to sell it.
Daily Taoist Show is Reading Tao of Taoism Book
Back to the DAILY TAOIST who is READING the TAO OF TAOISM book. I shot all 69 videos in the Instagram VERTICAL FORMAT. I’ve seen countless warnings, “Don’t ever shoot in the vertical format!!!” But I thought I was only going to shoot a few as samples to gather interest in the audiobook. I realize now that the audiobook of TAO OF TAOISM will also be inspiring and useful but it is the NOTEBOOK version I want to sell mostly. It works the best for the reader. I’m curious to see the future of this book’s distribution now… What will it be?
At any rate, the entire book is in these Instagram videos. Sheesh. Another product I’m giving away for free. No regrets about improving the minds of this planet… but I’d like to rise from my poverty.