How does the story of Groundhog Day resonate with Karl Johnson's chapter on "The Virtues of Fishing"?

The story of Groundhog Day resonates with Karl Johnson's chapter on "The Virtues of Fishing" because both illustrate the spiritual and ethical value of living fully in the moment. Both embrace the Taoist idea that "the journey is the reward" as well as the Buddhist concept that "it is better to travel well than to arrive."

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Groundhog Day is the story of a weatherman named Phil Connors who has to live the same day over and over again in a repeated loop. This loop does not end until Connors gains wisdom. Rather than try to escape what is happening or exploit it to his own advantage, Connors finally learns to embrace the moment. He finally uses the day to its fullest, both to improve himself and to try to save a homeless man from death. He internalizes the Taoist/Buddhist wisdom that the journey is the reward. As a result of his transformation, he wakes up the next morning able to move on with his life.

Karl Johnson's "The Virtues of Fishing" is also based on the idea that the journey is the reward, or, in the alleged words of Buddha, "It is better to travel well than to arrive." Johnson acknowledges it is easier and more efficient to buy fish at the grocery store. However, he asserts that the act of fishing has benefits in and of itself. It "engages the mind" by causing the person fishing to concentrate on where he is at the moment so that he can find the right bait, the right hole, and the right timing for casting and reeling in the rod. It engages the whole self: Mind, emotions, and body. It causes ethical awareness as one makes decisions about "self-restraint" and "integrity" in catching fish.

Phil Connors initially believes it is a waste of time to relive the same day over and over. Those who oppose fishing also consider it a waste of time, according to Johnson. However, both Connors and the fisherman's spirituality and selfhood are enhanced by living wholly and fully in the present moment.

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