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"You must become so free that your very existence is an act of rebellion." -Albert Camus

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Hufflepuff and Taoism: Why I Love the Badger.

The Tao of Pooh - Benjamin Hoff, Ernest H. Shepard

Fun fact:  I practice Taoism.  Knowing that will probably add a lot more context to this ramble that is supposed to make sense.


So, I am sure that you've heard of Pottermore... and maybe a lot of you have taken the Sorting Hat quiz, too.  I have to admit that I took it three times.  Three!  Mostly because the first time I took it, I felt like I answered one of the questions insincerely and wanted to go back.  I knew that they had different questions each time you take it, so I figured I'd get whatever house I was meant to have.


I've got a different house each time I took the quiz.  


Some claim that means I'm well-rounded (thanks guys), but what I think that really means is that you can't trust a quiz to tell you what you are or what you feel.  The first time, I got Hufflepuff, then Ravenclaw and then Gryffindor.  I remember when I got Hufflepuff vividly.  I didn't really care - I didn't know much about the house, to be honest.  I knew their main color was yellow, which is my favorite color, so I rolled with it.  The welcoming message was awesome and their Common Room seemed right up my alley.  But then... people started making fun of Hufflepuff.  A lot of my friends thought it was hysterical that I had been placed in it.  By this time, I had already re-taken it and gotten Ravenclaw, but I still felt a distinctive need to defend Hufflepuff because no matter what that Sorting Hat tells me, I will always strive to be a Hufflepuff.


There is a lovely book that I linked to this post called The Tao of Pooh, which explores Taoism and Winnie the Pooh in a way I had never thought of before.  I really recommend it, even if you don't practice Taoism or care about it whatsoever.  There is a lot of wisdom to be learned in that little book.


In Taoism, one does not fight the current of life.  They move with the stream until they find their own branch off.  However, if the stream begins doing something that they don't agree with, they never try to swim upstream.  They do not fight the current.  They simply stand in the middle of it, waging a silent and subtle war. Inner Peace is the goal, and one cannot find peace if they are always in a state of battle.  This was the essence of Pooh and Pooh was the essence of Tao.


I believe that the same wisdom applied to Pooh can be applied to Hufflepuff.  Hufflepuff is the most well-rounded house.  There is a reason that Cedric Diggory won the House Cup.  There is a reason they are know as being passive and kind, yet were just as eager as any other house to throw on those Potter-hating buttons in the fourth book.  They are not two-dimensional.  They are simply gliding through the stream of life and accept anyone who wants to journey with them.  Hufflepuff is a symbolic representation of the Tao to me.  


Because they welcome people on any path, because they are a House whose paths branch into many different directions - some "good" and some "bad" - because they are the ones who are dependable, because they are good finders, because they are loyal, because they are subtle... all of this is Taoism to me.  This is my perception of The Path. This is how I want to live: quietly standing against the stream, searching for my own path and my own way.