<>b>Wisdom from Books

<>b>Wisdom from Books
Stephen Lau's website on getting your wisdom from books.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Biblical Wisdom and Financial Freedom

Nowadays, to survive on faith is never easy: it requires not only Biblical wisdom but also human wisdom in order to create the financial freedom necessary to make both ends meet.

To get financial freedom, you need human wisdom to do the following:

(1) Always spend less than you earn. Do not fall into the trap of buy-now-and-pay-later, which may be forever.

(2) Do not spend money on the things you don't need with the money you don't have. Turn your debt-servicing dollars into you-servicing dollars, that is, use your money to serve yourself first, not the credit card companies.

(3) Start saving early. Do not procrastinate. The perils of procrastination contribute to the vicious cycle of debt and expenditure. Remember, expenditures always rise to meet income: the less you have, the less you will spend.

(4) Save regularly. The simple solution to saving regularly is always paying yourself first, instead of others. To put it into application, set aside automatically a sum of money every month before you pay others, or spend it on yourself.

Living in faith and surviving on faith to create financial freedom require you to trust in the Word of God to prepare not just for the difficult times but also for the future, as well as to execute what you must do with human wisdom

"Go to the ant, O sluggard,
Observe her ways and be wise,
Which, having no chief,
Officer or ruler,
Prepares her food in the summer
And gathers her provision in the harvest." (Proverbs 6:6-8) 

It is easy to see that the spiritual application teaches about preparing for eternal life, but the practical interpretation is a clear message about the importance of handling material things today in anticipation of the needs of tomorrow. Survival on faith is certainly a tool to survive in any economic downturn.

Jesus' parable about the unjust steward handling the investment that was entrusted to him is another testament to the importance of handling money diligently and wisely. (Matthew 25:14-30)

Again, Paul taught this: Be "Not slothful in business." (Romans 12:11)

Maintaining balance between practical handling of material things and living in faith for financial freedom requires both Biblical and human wisdom.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

TAO Wisdom to Get Out of Depression

Depression is not a new mind disorder, but it has become increasingly prevalent. We all have a depressive mind because we are all living in a world of depression. The only difference is that our depression may all differ in intensity: slight, serious, or severe. The truth of the matter is that each and every one of us is depressed, without any exception, because we all experience our depressive episodes at some points during our lifespan, and it is very normal. However, many of us prefer to deny or ignore our emotional dysfunction due to the stigma that is often associated with depression.

Depression is not a new human disease or disorder; it is as ancient as man:

“so I have been allotted months of futility,
    and nights of misery have been assigned to me.
When I lie down I think, ‘How long before I get up?’
    The night drags on, and I toss and turn until dawn.
My body is clothed with worms and scabs,
    my skin is broken and festering.
 My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle,
    and they come to an end without hope.
Remember, O God, that my life is but a breath;
    my eyes will never see happiness again.
The eye that now sees me will see me no longer;
    you will look for me, but I will be no more.
As a cloud vanishes and is gone,
    so one who goes down to the grave does not return.
 He will never come to his house again;
    his place will know him no more.
 Therefore I will not keep silent;
    I will speak out in the anguish of my spirit,
    I will complain in the bitterness of my soul. (Job 7: 3-11)

Answer me quickly, Lord; my spirit fails. Do not hide your face from me or I will be like those who go down to the pit.
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life. (Psalm 143: 7-8)

In modern age, Sir Winston Churchill, the Prime Minister of Great Britain, underwent serious bouts of depression during his country’s national crisis in World War II. The fact is that depression is no respecter of persons—even for those with very high I.Q., such as the Nobel Prize winning author Ernest Hemingway who committed suicide just as his father did with the comment “I’ll probably go the same way.” Indeed, many of us are vulnerable to this genetic mental disorder.

Sadly, depression is currently increasing at an alarming rate because the world we are now living in is getting more challenging, more complex, and more complicated each day passingit has now become a world of depression.

The bottom line: How do we get out of depression?

My Way! No Way! TAO Is The Way!
TAO Wisdom To Live And Survive In A World Of Depression

This book is perhaps one the few books with an unconventional approach to depression, a universal mind disorder affecting many people worldwide. Instead of the conventional ways of avoiding depression with distractions, such as exercise, suppressing its symptoms with affirmations and visualizations, and elevating its depressive moods with medications, this 180-page book uses the ancient wisdom from China, what is known as TAO wisdom, to experience anything and everything in depression, that is, going through every aspect of depression.  

TAO wisdom may enlighten you so that you can ultimately free yourself from depression, or at least look at your own depression very differently.

Here is the INTRODUCTION to the book:

“TAO is neither a religion nor a philosophy.

TAO is simply a way of life about the Way of life, that is, a general way of thinking about everything in life. It is a pathless path of humanity to live as if everything is a miracle.

TAO is the Way through anything and everything in life in order to fully experience them and live in balance and harmony. TAO is not about avoiding or getting out of anything unhappy and undesirable in everyday life, such as depression; rather, it is about going through depression by experiencing every aspect of it in order to become enlightened, if possible, with the profound human wisdom to continue living in peace and harmony in a world of depression.

TAO is looking at life not as a series of both happy and unhappy episodes, but simply as a journey of self-discovery and self-awakening to the real meaning of life existence. You are defined not by your words and thoughts, but by the ways you act and react, as well as the impact you may have on others around you. You exist not because you are simply here; you are here in this world to love and to learn how to live, as well as to help one another do the same."

To get your Amazon digital copy, click here; to get your paperback copy, click here.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Friday, June 16, 2017

The Wisdom to Let Go of Mind Disorder

In 2015, gunman Vester Flanagan gunned down reporter Alison Parker and Adam Ward in front of the TV camera; this vicious slaughter was witnessed by thousands of TV viewers.

Many viewers, including some interviewed psychologists, tried to explain why the murderer would do such a horrific act.

Maybe the wisdom of Lao Tzu, also known as Tao wisdom (The word "Tao" comes from the ancient Chinese classic "Tao Te Ching" the only book written by Lao Tzu, which has become one of the most translated works in world literature) can explain why the killer has a mind disorder. As a matter of fact, we may all have a mind disorder to a greater or lesser extent, if we don't follow the wisdom of Lao Tzu.

This mind disorder is a result of not "letting go." In life, we all have to learn how to let go of everything, including life itself (when we have to confront imminent death as a result of health or old age). Throughout life, we have to let go of our children (when they go to college, get married, or die ahead of us); we have to let go of material things, such as career, money etc.); we have to let go of our memories (memories of the unpleasant in the form of anger, bitterness, or vengeance, as well as memories of the pleasant in the form of desires and expectations). If we do not and cannot let go of our emotions, we develop mind disorder that may lead to anything, including a horrific crime, such as the one committed by the gunman Vester Flanagan. 

This is how the mind disorder of a killer is developed. An individual is fired from his job. His perceptions of disappointment, dissatisfaction. injustice, racial prejudice and discrimination, among others, become registered in the mind as memories. Without the power of letting go, that individual's mind will continue to generate more negative thoughts in the subconscious mind until the breaking point. If that individual has an aggressive or a violent nature, then killing may seem to be the last resort.

It is all about letting go, which is the essence of Tao wisdom. To learn how to let go, begin with letting go of material things (Are you living a simple life? Is your closet cluttered with clothes that you have not worn in the past few years?); with the letting go of time (Are you always on the go? Do you talk or text while driving? Are you living in the past or the future, except in the present?); with the letting go of the memories (Do you easily forgive or do you always bear grudges?). If you don't let go, you have anxiety, depression, and other mind disorders that may culminate in tragedies.

Get Tao wisdom, and read the entire script of "Tao Te Ching" in The Complete Tao Te Ching in Plain English. To learn more about Tao wisdom, click here.

To live well as if everything is a miracle, you need wisdom—more specifically, the Tao wisdom of letting go.  

Mind disorder can easily lead to depression.

Stephen Lau 

Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Monday, June 5, 2017

Why TAO Is the Way to Biblical Wisdom

The interpretations of Tao Te Ching (道德經) by Lao Tzu (老子) are as many as its translations.

My translation of Tao Te Ching is based on my own interpretation of Lao Tzu’s masterpiece with respect to the Holy Bible.

Here are some of my thoughts on my literary endeavor.

Tao () or the Way is a means to an end, but not an end itself. That is to say, we follow Tao to some destination, but Tao is neither a destination nor the destination.

Tao is above and beyond human wisdom, but it is not divine wisdom. Simply, Tao may be the Way between human wisdom and divine wisdom. It helps us understand the true nature of man and his role in the world of creation, and thus connects us directly or indirectly to the Creator.

Tao is about the thinking mind. We are humans, and it is human nature to follow and cling to human wisdom as a beacon of light to show us the way. As a result, we have developed a conditioned mind of thinking, which only further impairs human wisdom, already frail and fragile as it is due to human imperfections. In contrast to conventional human wisdom, Tao is about reverse thinking that renders the human mind more receptive to spiritual wisdom.

Tao is not a religion, although it has been associated with religions, such as Zen, Buddhism, and Taoism. Tao was never meant to be an object of human pursuit or worship; that is why Tao is also called “the Way” to show us a direction or pathway to divine wisdom. It is just a means to an end, and the end is the wisdom in the Word of God, expressed in the Holy Bible.

Tao is not God’s wisdom; at best, it is only distilled human wisdom that may lead to the ultimate understanding of Biblical wisdom.
Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau