• Chris Chlebowski

Wu Wei, Brook, Wu Wei - Written for Brook's Ceremony of Life

There is nothing easy about this. There is much efforting in this process of learning to say good-bye to a son, a husband, a father, a brother and a friend.


The only thing that we know will ease this burden are long rivers of time.


But we stand here today, in this now moment, in this world, having to try and to come to peace with the passing of our dear Brook.


And that feels hard.


He was so much, to so many people.

He had a spirit so big that he needed to stand in multiple worlds; one alone was not enough to hold him.

With grace and ease he tended many irons, and with what end goal? Always to help others.

He did so many things with others as his priority.


And he shouldered so much weight, and chopped so much wood.

Able to make it look effortless much of the time.


Last Wednesday morning at 8:30 am Brook sent me a message.

He was offering up some sage advice because he had observed that I was suffering in a way and he wanted to ease that pain, he wanted to carry some water for me.

As was his nature.


In his message he wrote to me of a concept from Taoist philosophy, one that he said they spoke of frequently in his Chi Gong circles.

The idea is pronounced “Woo- way” and its translation means “Doing, not Doing”.

If we distill this expression it means ……. “Effortless action”.

Wu Wei in an essence is the idea that when we slow down, still our minds, and focus our attention on our inner landscape we can begin to move effortless through the river of the universe accomplishing much, with very little effort.

Being in a flow state, like liquid, like a Brook flowing by.


I observed that Brook was endlessly trying to cultivate deeper states of inner awareness so he could move fluidly on this plane of existence accomplishing so much in a fleeting wisp of time.


I feel certain that his inner work was also done in preparation for this time so he could move effortlessly in other realms of experience.

He is working his chi gong on the other side. Shifting through the forms - his hands tracing patterns of light.


This work will make it easy for him to have his feet in two streams at once, as that was his nature to practice Wu Wei.


So as I am EFFORTING now against this loss.

I am going to try and do my best to remember his words. To let this loss flow around me and through me as much as I able to do.

Trying to find balance in the surf.


The last day I saw Brook in the clinic was on Monday and we joked, all of us, about his cutting off of his hair and that wouldn’t he lose some of his strength like the biblical Samson did?

But Brook answered in his uniquely “Brookish” way; he said “no, I feel lighter”.


And so all of this is to say, I don’t really think he is gone, I think he is just lighter now

Wu Wei Brook, Wu Wei.


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