Stephen Lau shares his reflections on life and living, health and wellness, faith and spirituality, self-help and self-learning--a blog on introspection in the art of living well for triple life makeover in health fitness, emotional centeredness, and spiritual connection.
Wisdom from Books
Stephen Lau's website to help you get the wisdom to live as if everything is a miracle!
This book is about
the art of living well, which is being in
the material world we are all living in, but without being of this mundane world. This daunting and challenging task requires profound
human wisdom, which comes from TAO wisdom, the ancient wisdom from Lao Tzu, the
ancient sage from China,
more than 2,600 years ago.
Lao Tzu was the author of the immortal classic Tao
Te Ching, made up of 81 short chapters of Chinese poetry on human
wisdom, one of the most translated books in world literature.
This book explains the essentials of TAO wisdom, based on Stephen Lau's own translation and interpretation of Lao Tzu's immortal classic Tao Te Ching with his comments after each of the 81 chapters. Living for life is the
wisdom of living in this contemporary age. It is not easy, so you need TAO wisdom.
The TAO of Living
for Life shows you the wisdom of living not just for yourself, but also for others as well -- just as the famous English poet John Donne says: "No man is an island." Once you perceive this intricate inter-connection between people, you will self-intuit the wisdom of Lao Tzu. After all, according to Lao Tzu, there is no word or blueprint for human wisdom -- it is all about self-intuition. Stephen Lau
Money matters in life.
You cannot do without money. Your money matters to you. But money can often
create irrational behavior in rational people, resulting in harmful and even
painful consequences in their lives.
Examples of irrational
behavior in rational people are:
Money matters so much
to some people that they feel so contented and will not even ask for more, even
though they may rightly deserve it.
Money matters so much
to some people that they simply refuse ever to go into debt, blindly believing
in the virtue of being debt-free no matter what.
Money matters so much
to some people that they allow their greed to get better of their sound
financial judgment, resulting in bad investments.
Money matters so much
to some people that they do not let on about the family finances, such as
couples concealing bank accounts or credit card payments from each other.
The Obstacles to
Understanding Your Money Matters
You spend more than
you earn. You buy things you don’t need with the money you don’t have.
You think you need
more money. You save and save. Money has become security to you.
You want quick returns
and big payoffs for your money.
You go with the crowd
when it comes to investment and spending.
You lie about money,
because you measure yourself on the basis of money.
You refuse to talk
about money, because you are uncomfortable about it. Or you hate money because
it is the root of all evils.
To overcome these
obstacles, you must simply do exactly the opposite.
Once you can free
yourself from the irrational behavior regarding money matters, you will
perceive how money really matters in your life such that you
will know how to sell yourself, how to invest wisely, and how to make more
money. You will be richer for life—in every way. At the end of
the day, your money matters.
understand how your money matters, you will look at money with
new perspectives and you will know how to invest and make your
Saliva is a clear,
watery fluid made by the body's salivary glands located inside each cheek at
the bottom of the mouth and ears, as well as near the front teeth by the
Saliva plays a pivotal
part in human health -- it is a miracle of recovery and rejuvenation.
According to Eastern
medicine, human saliva has miraculous healing power. Research in a recent
Japanese study indicated that saliva can fight cancer cells in rats and other
For thousands of
years, Chinese physicians have believed that saliva has all the ingredients for
optimizing longevity and overall wellness due to its inherent benefits on the
five human organs: the heart, liver, spleen, lungs, and kidneys. Saliva is
anti-aging because it promotes cell growth and cell division -- a key factor in
internal nourishment and rejuvenation, without which the aging process
accelerates. In addition, saliva strengthens bones ad teeth, cleanses and
detoxifies the body, aids digestion of food and assimilation of nutrients.
Ancient Chinese physicians even used the sufficiency or insufficiency of saliva
as part of their disease diagnosis.
Saliva is a miracle in
itself because it is your body's built-in self-made fluid for self-defense
against viruses and infections. Harness the power of that miracle to your
advantage, and this is how:
waking up each morning, stand erect.
Gently exhale through the
mouth three times to rid your body of toxins accumulated during your sleep.
Close your mouth, and begin
hitting your teeth for 30 seconds as if you were chewing food in your
Then, slowly massage your
teeth with your tongue for 30 seconds.
By then, your mouth should
have generated some saliva. Do not swallow it immediately. Close your
eyes, and visualize that your are swallowing the saliva and it is slowly
dripping down to the dan tian, which is the "energy
center" of your body. Dan tian is located in the
lower abdomen between the navel and the pubic bone. Physically, it
corresponds to the functions of digestion, elimination, and reproduction.
Psychologically, it functions by promoting a sense of physical balance and
stability. Dan tian is also a source of power for
physical energy, sexual vitality, and inner power as emphasized by the
Chinese Qi Gong exercise.
After the mental
visualization, then slowly swallow the saliva.
Repeat this on waking up and
before going to bed.
Do not undermine the
miracle of saliva. In addition to the above daily practice, make your own
saliva as much as and as often as you can during the day. You can always
increase your saliva by thoroughly chewing your food before swallowing ; it is
also good practice to let your food remain in your mouth for a little longer,
say, a few seconds, after chewing before swallowing it (this
also applies to drinking liquid). Induce your mouth to make more saliva. Make
the most out of the miracle of saliva.
We all love to eat.
However, we must remember that we eat to live, and not live to eat. Some foods
are more stimulating than others. Too over-stimulating foods, however,
over-stimulate the nervous system, and therefore may not be beneficial if they
are consumed too much. Caffeine, for example, has been said to kill vitamin B
in the body; although it has immediate uplifting effect, its long-term effect
In Chinese diet, the emphasis is on balance and harmony, rather than
stimulation. Any external stimulus may prevent this expression of harmony from
Chinese diet is all
about balance and harmony. Chinese diet is yin and yang (the female and
the male, respectively)—using foods to balance and complement each other for
optimum health rejuvenation and wholesome wellness. These two opposing forces
in Nature balance and complement each other, thereby resulting in perfect
harmony, without which there is only internal chaos, leading to disease and
One of my favorite recipes is Fruit and Vegetable Curry.
3 bananas, sliced
3 tomatoes, diced
1 small onion, sliced
4 whole cardamom pods
2 apples, sliced
raisins, a handful
and sweetened, a handful
raw almonds, a handful
pumpkin seeds, a handful
1 stick of cinnamon
1/2 inch ginger
1-2 tablespoons of curry
powder to taste
ingredients in a pot. Bring to boil, and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve with
I just love this nutritious dish. It is simple
and easy to prepare.
Use exercise to heal, because it has to do with the mind, the body, and
the spirit. Natural healing is holistic healing, which is healing of the body,
the mind, and the spirit. In order to heal, the mind must have the intent to
heal, and the body must be ready for healing; during the healing process, the
spirit must be energized to overcome any setback or obstacle that may interrupt
with the healing process. Exercise can heal the body, the mind, and the spirit.
For exercise to be effective, it must be a regular routine that shows
discipline; just like the mind that must be disciplined and focused
in the pursuit of natural healing. With the right exercise mindset, you can use
exercise to heal not just the body, but also the mind and the spirit. Exercise
can be instrumental in healing virtually any disease.
Exercise increases the heart function by stimulating blood circulation
to optimize blood pressure, and to enhance lung efficiency by increasing the
input of oxygen to the lungs. Regular exercise promotes both heart and lung
Exercise boosts the immune system. Aerobic exercise may have significant
and particular benefits for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes by
increasing insulin sensitivity, lowering blood pressure, improving cholesterol
levels, and reducing body fat. For those people with multiple sclerosis,
Parkinson's disease, and Alzheimer's disease, exercise may improve mobility and
reverse muscle atrophy by reducing spasticity in neurological disorders.
A number of scientific studies indicated that regular exercise reduces
the risk of colon cancer, prostate cancer, and even breast cancer. Use exercise
to heal cancer.
Exercise increases the supply of oxygen to the brain, and thus enhancing
brain function, making the brain younger for longer. It can even create
"high" through the release of endorphins, which are euphoric
substances in the brain. Regular exercise is good for overall mental health.
Regular strenuous exercise relieves any built-up tension, and thus is
effective for stress control and stress management. Stress is one of the main
underlying causes of disease. Use exercise to heal distress.
Low-impact aerobic exercise, such as jumping rope or a bouncer,
significantly improves the body's circulation to benefit detoxification, which
holds the key to holistic healing. The body must be ready for healing, and the
removal of toxins provides the optimum environment. Exercise detoxifies both
the body and the mind through increased blood circulation and movement of
lymphatic fluids. Use exercise to heal through detoxification.
Yoga is an excellent example to illustrate how you can use exercise to
heal. Yoga is more than an exercise: it is a science that has been practiced
for thousands of years, based on ancient theories, observations, and principles
about the connection between the body and the mind. The intrinsic healing
benefits of yoga have been proven by modern medicine.
Yoga not only provides the body with the most practical approach to
attaining a high level of physical fitness, but also stabilizes emotions and
elevates mental attitudes. In other words, yoga unites the mind, the body, and
the spirit in holistic health. Essentially, it is a holistic approach to
wellness and natural healing. Through acute awareness of the body's posture,
alignment, and patterns of movement, as well as the focus on natural breathing,
yoga is therapeutic in that it helps the body find true harmony, thereby
healing the body, the mind, and the spirit.
Also, use Taoist exercise to overcome insomnia or get natural sleep, perform this simple
Chinese Taoist exercise:
Lie on your back. Bend both knees.
Use both hands to pull your knees towards your chest, and
Hold for one to two minutes, and relax.
Straighten your legs, putting your arms and hands at your sides.
Relax for one to two minutes.
Take a deep breath, and stretch both arms upwards above your
Then, slowly bring your hands down while you breathe out.
Massage your body from your chest to your abdomen for a few
Bring both hands at your sides, and relax.
Repeat as necessary until you feel drowsy and fall asleep.
This exercise is
good not just for insomnia, but also for your lower back pain, if it is performed
on a hard surface.
“Progress is impossible
without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change
anything.” George Bernard Shaw
Your mind is your being, and
your brain is the most important of all your body organs because it controls
your whole being. How you think, what you do, how you act and react, and what
you do with all your life experiences—they ultimately become not only your
memories but also your realities.
Cancer is a complex and
multi-faceted disease. It involves not just your body systems, and your body
organs, but also your mind. Scientists have attested to the inter-connection
between the body and the mind. In other words, a toxic body may lead to a toxic
mind, and vice-versa. That is to say, having cancer may adversely affect your
mind, how it thinks, how it reacts, and how it makes choices and decisions; by
the same token, a toxic mind may not only cause cancer but also undermine the
prognosis and the recovery of cancer.
Do you have a toxic mind?
You may have a toxic mind if you have depression, or you are
regularly suffering from episodes of unexplained sadness.
You may have a toxic mind if your love relationships are always
under stress and strain, and your children are forever rebellious and
You may have a toxic mind if you are always on the verge of good
health and success, but you never quite seem to be getting them.
You may have a toxic mind if you have achieved some
accomplishments in your life, and yet you are forever plagued by frustration,
and never quite seem to be enjoying the fruits of your success.
You may have a toxic mind if you find yourself struggling with
something that you can neither identify nor understand.
You may have a toxic mind if you always feel a long, evil arm
stretching from the past, trying to grip hold of you, and pulling you back from
reaching your life goals and realizing your dreams.
You must detox your mind in order to increase your mind power not
only to avoid cancer but also to cope with cancer if you unfortunately have the
The rate of divorce is skyrocketing in the United States,
and the U.S. Census estimates about half of marriages end in divorce.
According to relationship experts, the number of long-term relationships
heading towards separation is becoming more frequent with a longer life span
and a growing acceptability of divorce. A case in point: former Vice President,
who after 40 years of a seemingly happy marriage, decided to separate from his
wife, and announced that they would go their own separate ways.
So what the experts are in fact saying is that people divorce because they have
a longer lifespan, and that divorce is no longer a social taboo.
But marriage is about commitment and responsibility. What our society is saying
is that individuals have a right to look for something better as long as they
have a breath of life in them, or to opt for something more satisfying as long
as something is available to them. If that were the foundation of marriage,
then why bothered to get married in the first place? Remember, marriage is not
a dress that you throw away when it no longer fits you. If you find that your
body has outgrown the dress, you can slim down so that you can fit into the
dress again, or you can have it altered so that it can fit into you. In other
words, life is about changes, and so is marriage. You just have to adapt
yourself to these changes, and that makes it challenging and interesting,
and that is what marriage is all about. You don't just walk away from a
marriage because you don't like it anymore. A marriage is a lifetime commitment
for thick and thin, for better or for worse.
Are you finding yourself in a
marriage that you want to get out of, or in a relationship that you don't like?
Only you have the answer.
However, here are some thoughts
of Zen wisdom:
First of all, Zen is not an
Eastern religion, but an ancient Chinese philosophy based on the wisdom
of Lao Tzu, a sage and the author of the famous ancient Chinese
classic "Tao Te Ching."
Life is full of problems, so do
not strive to seek a solution to all the problems in life. As a matter of
fact, too much striving is the source of stress, which may create more stress
and therefore more problems than solutions.
Right and wrong co-exist, so do
the desirable and the undesirable. In life, embrace what is pleasant, well as
what is unpleasant. Just as Sosan, the Zen scholar, said: "To
separate what we like from what we dislike is the disease of the mind."
True love is loving without
expectations. Love is never having to use someone to make you feel better.
Remember, you are who you are, and you are good enough for the one you love. Remember, nobody is perfect, including yourself and your spouse.