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The Art of Doing Nothing:
Simple Ways to Make Time for Yourself

by Veronique Vienne
1998

Maybe you think you don't need a book that tells you how to do nothing. Maybe you think you're pretty good at it already. But are you really? Do you really know how to savor your moments of nothingness? Can you lose yourself in idleness, or is some nagging part of you insisting that you should be doing something? At its height, doing nothing is an art form, a true exercise in serenity, mindfulness and living in the present. If you really want the full experience and enjoyment of doing nothing, you will find this peaceful little volume quite helpful.

Author Veronique Vienne lauds procrastination (as does Henry David Thoreau). She approaches lounging as if it were a particularly delicious Yoga posture and explains the most luxurious ways to nap and bathe. She even turns waiting into a lovely act of repose. She also points out that Doing Nothing is not merely kicking back into decadent laziness - it's the pause that refreshes, a time to distress, a lesson in being in the now. After all, isn't emptiness necessary to reach enlightenment?

This small, slim volume is illustrated with Erica Lennard's beautiful sepia-toned photographs - they're calming and serene in themselves. This is a delightful book, and a necessary one for those of us who tend to live our lives by zipping by with nary a pause. Besides, what's not to like about a book that contains "Tips for Beach Bums" and a "Recipe for a Gourmet Nap"?

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