Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Herbal Healing Vs Pharmaceutical Drugs

Herbal healing is the natural use of different parts of plants for natural healing. It has been practiced for thousands of years in many different parts of the world by many different cultures for many different healing purposes.

The growing popularity of herbal healing

The growing popularity of herbal remedies is due to the following reasons:

The time-proven therapeutic values of healing herbs: as a matter of fact, some healing herbs are just as effective as most conventional Western medicines.

Many people have become increasingly aware of the importance of maintaining health. Herbs—not potentially dangerous pharmaceutical drugs—promote holistic health of the body and the mind.

Herbs are often safer to use. Of course, some herbs, too, are as toxic as conventional drugs, but they are relatively few and far in between.
Herbs are much cheaper than prescription drugs, which are often monopolized by few big pharmaceutical companies.

Herbs are natural. Although "natural" does not necessarily mean "harmless," many people can easily relate themselves to the use of different parts of plants for healing and treatment purposes.

Herbs abound in nature. The options of herbal cures and remedies are plentiful.

Removing free radicals to remove diseases is a holistic approach to health and wellness. Holistic health is the foundation of natural healing. The human body is designed such that it can initiate its own natural self-healing process, provided it has the appropriate environment. Unfortunately, natural health is often compromised by abuse and neglect of the body, the mind, and the soul, either knowingly or unknowingly. Learn more about holistic healing to fight your autoimmune disease without the use of dangerous pharmaceutical drugs.

Elaine Hollingsworth, the movie star turned heath crusade, once said how dangerous drugs, unreliable medical tests, and often-times unnecessary procedures might further sicken you instead of using herbs for your natural self-healing.

So, teach yourself self-responsibility — your greatest weapon in improving health, and your first step in beginning natural self-healing against any autoimmune disease.

Stop taking dangerous pharmaceutical drugs, especially steroids, to begin your long but safe self-healing process!

Stephen Lau      
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Be Your True Self

 Be Your True Self

As you continue your life journey, always look forward, instead of looking backward with regret and remorse. Don’t ever wish you were someone else; always be your true self.

Life is about experiences, which are composed of thoughts of those experiences. According to James Allen, author of As A Man Thinketh, men are “makers of themselves” and the human mind is the “master-weaver, both of the inner garment of character and the outer garment of circumstance.” Accordingly, you have become who you are and what you have by way of your own thinking over the years; in short, you are the sum of your own thoughts.

So, life is about mind over matter. To fully harness your mind power, first of all, you need to fully understand the role of the mind and how your mind works, so that it may work for you, instead of against you; and then learn the strategies to fully utilize your mind power.

The brain is composed of grey matters and neurons or nerve cells that transmit information and messages; they are the building blocks of the brain for brain fitness to be receptive of the wisdom in the art of living well.

Neurons are responsible for all human behaviors in the form of perceptions, which trigger a mental process that results in an action or an emotion. If the process becomes instinctive, then the output in the form of action or emotion is also automatic and predictable. That is how attitudes and habits are formed, including the fight-or-flight response to any situation. This automatic or spontaneous mental process is often not “by choice.” The bad news is that this “learned” mental process is responsible for the way we think and act, for our beliefs and emotions, for our actions or inactions, and for our behaviors—in other words, every aspect of our lives. The good news is that you can learn to recognize this instinctive or automatic mental process, challenge its reality or see through the deception, and then take appropriate actions to change the mental process accordingly. Wisdom is the ability to recognize the deception behind the quasi-truths acquired by the mind, that is, the ability to separate the sheep from the goats.

Experiences and the Mind

Your experiences in life are the byproducts of what happens to you throughout your life, which is determined by two pivotal players:

Circumstances

Circumstances are events that happen to you and around you, and they fall under two categories: self-inflicting internal circumstances, such as, procrastination affecting the turns of events in your life; uncontrollable external circumstances, such as, accidents due to no fault of your own.

 

Choices


Choices result in actions or inactions, which often bring about consequences as well as circumstances that affect your life in general and in specific.

All in all, you are who you think you are. But that is not the real you. To live your life as if everything is a miracle, you have to know your true self first and foremost. Get the blueprint to live your life in the art of living well, and be the maker of your true self.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Monday, December 28, 2020

Ancient Wisdom and Aging

Ancient Wisdom and Aging

The human body has built-in body wisdom that keeps it young and healthy, that is, an innate awareness of its basic needs, as well as its warning signs and signals of internal disharmony that may lead to imminent disease and disorder. Therefore, wisdom is required to enhance this human consciousness to create a new environment in which the biochemistry of the body becomes the substance of awareness of beliefs, emotions, and thoughts, thereby instrumental in maintaining and sustaining the overall wellness of an individual to remain disease-free as much as and as long as possible.

Body wisdom is no more than everyday eating and living habits. Eating is a science, and living is an art; they complement each other, just as "yin" and "yang" do. Human wisdom is, essentially, the capability in creating and managing this art and science to live a better and a longer life.

Ancient wisdom plays a pivotal role in aging. Ancient wisdom, however, is not the same as contemporary wisdom. The former has more to ays do with the mind -- how it thinks and perceives; the latter focuses more on knowledge acquisition, and its practical applications in life.

To illustrate, Lao Tzu, an ancient sage in China some 2,600 years ago, was the author of the immortal Chinese classic "Tao Te Ching," which is one of the most translated and extensively read books of all time. According to legend, Lao Tzu wanted to leave China for Tibet, but he was stopped at the city gate, where he was forced to put down his wisdom in writing before he could leave. Reluctantly, he expressed his profound and eternal wisdom in only 5,000 words, and that was how "Tao Te Ching" came into being..

How is the role of Tao wisdom in living a better and a longer life?

Lao Tzu's wisdom is unique in that it emphasizes "reverse" thinking of the human mind, instead of the "conditioned" contemporary mindset. In other words, one must, first and foremost, have an empty mind before one can even think out of the box, not to mention creating one's own box in thinking. To illustrate, Lao Tzu's focus on "under-doing" (as opposed to "over-doing" or "the more, the better" contemporary mindset), "living in the present" (as opposed to "multi-tasking" modern lifestyle), and "no expectation of result" (as opposed to "goal-oriented" or "goal-setting" attitude of this day and age) is conducive to creating internal peace and harmony, which is the essence of living a stress-free life. The essentials of Tao wisdom are fundamental to the art of living well and the science of healthy living without stress.

In addition, Lao Tzu believed that true wisdom lies in internalizing and self-intuiting eternal truths. Unlike contemporary wisdom, Tao wisdom has no blueprint for all -- just as the health of an individual is based on the unique body chemistry of that individual; true wisdom, therefore, is acute awareness of the needs of the body, which is known exclusively only to that individual.

Another example of ancient wisdom is that of Hippocrates (377-460 BC), the "Father of Medicine." His basic principles of health and wellness are profound. For example, Hippocrates said: "Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food." His wisdom is quite contrary to the conventional wisdom of modern medicine, which overtly emphasizes the use of drugs. The United States is the riches but also the sickest country in the world, and our healthcare costs have skyrocketed in recent decades.

Hippocrates also expressed his wisdom in the art of living: "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." The wisdom of modern medicine focuses on cure through drugs and procedures, rather than prevention through a holistic approach to health and wellness of the body, the mind, and the spirit. The wisdom of modern medicine is simply on quick fixing the symptoms, instead of preventing their occurrence in the first place.

The wisdom of Hippocrates echoed that of Lao Tzu's "non-doing" or "under-doing" when he said: "To do nothing is sometimes a good remedy." According to Hippocrates, "everything in excess is opposed to nature" because of the presence of the innate body wisdom in self-healing. Unfortunately, modern medicine chooses to do just the opposite, and thus opening the Pandora's box, creating many more human diseases and disorders through toxic drugs and procedures.

To conclude, wisdom is about acute awareness and profound perception through the human eye to see things as they really are, without looking at them through colored spectacles. 

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Seniors and Prostate Problems

 Prostate problems usually begin after age 35. By age 50, about 25 percent of all men have enlarged prostate, and by age 80, nearly 80 percent have prostate problems of some sort.

There are two major factors contributing to prostate problems: obesity and hormonal changes.

Maintaining kidney health is integral to your prostate health. Treating prostate problems with medications often affects the health of the kidneys.

Prostate cancer has to do with testosterone levels in the body. Patients diagnosed with prostate cancer are often prescribed female hormones to reduce the male testosterone.

A plant-based or vegetarian diet reduces testosterone levels. The fiber in plant foods facilitates the removal of testosterone from the body. When the liver filters the blood, it removes testosterone through the bile duct into the small intestine. The fiber from plant foods then soaks up the testosterone and removes it with other waste products out of the body. Another reason for consuming plant foods is that a protein known as sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG) in plant foods is responsible for keeping testosterone inactive until needed.

The lycopene in tomatoes reduces the risk of prostate cancer. Cooked tomatoes are more protective than raw ones. Other foods that contain lycopene include watermelon, strawberries, and pink grapefruit.

If diagnosed with prostate cancer, avoid all animal products. Eat plenty of grains and green vegetables to accelerate the removal of excess testosterone. Use diet to control prostate cancer. Surgery should be the last option, since prostate cancer occurring at advanced age seldom leads to fatality.

Stephen Lau

Thursday, December 24, 2020

The Watcher and the Observer

 The Watcher and the Observer

“The Creator seems elusive amid the changes of life.
At times, He seems to have forsaken His creations.
In reality, He is simply observing the comings and goings of their follies.

Likewise, we watch the comings and goings
of our likes and dislikes, of our desires and fears.
But we do not identify with them.
With no judgment and no preference,
we see the mysteries of creation.”
Lao Tzu

We are living in a world of war and violence.

How could the Creator permit such evil to persist? Has the Creator forsaken those who are just and righteous?

If you choose to ask the Creator the above questions, maybe you should also ask yourself the same questions.

The bottom line: never ever judgeinjustice in the physical world is one of the mysteries to be resolved by the Creator, and not by you, because you are in the world and not of the world. Like the Creator, just watch and observe, and let things happen the way they are supposed to—that is the wisdom of Lao Tzu, the ancient sage from China, more than 2,600 years ago. We all want things our way, and that is why there is conflict in the first place.

As aging continues, you will begin to understand that you cannot have anything and everything your way or no way.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Anti-Depression Love Recipes

 Love Recipes

“Love” is a big word in all human civilizations. For all religious disparities, love still plays an essential role in all the world’s religions. Love plays an important role in human lives, especially living in a world of conflicts and aggression.

What is the real meaning of “love”? Love involves our emotions and feelings. We all love some things and some people. Love, ironically enough, gives us both happiness and unhappiness. When the love is fulfilled, we feel happy; when the love is rejected or unrequited, we then feel pain, which becomes the unhappiness. This, unfortunately, is the reality of love.

Loving others is not that easy, and loving yourself is sometimes even more difficulty. This is also the reality of life.
The truth of the matter is that to truly love someone is very difficult, if not impossible, unless you love yourself first.

Self-acceptance

In a general sense, self-esteem is the positive or negative evaluative perception of self.  It is a rating of self based on a partial assessment of current and/or past traits. Many mental health professionals claim that achieving higher self-esteem is the keystone of good mental health, in particular, in avoiding depression; such claims, however, are dubious at best.

Low self-esteem is self-doubt, often expressed in not asserting oneself in public or workplace, and not pushing past one’s comfort zones.

To love yourself is self-acceptance, which is accepting who and what you really are—and not who and what you wish you were (that is, your ego-self). It should also be pointed out that “loving yourself” and “loving your ego-self” are not quite the same. The former is loving yourself for who you really are despite all your imperfections; the latter involves loving or craving to be the person you wish you were. “Loving yourself” means you can love others as well because they are not very different from you in that they, too, are as imperfect as you are. On the other hand, “loving your ego-self” means it is very difficult to love others because you want to distinguish and separate yourself from others; accordingly, others must somehow satisfy your ego first before you can love them. That explains why if you have a big ego-self, you cannot easily and readily love others.

The bottom line: if you can accept yourself as who and what you are, then it may become much easier for you to accept and love others as who and what they are.

Oneness of all life

Accepting and loving others implies having mindfulness of the inter-connection between people; that is to say, no man is an island, according to the poet John Donne. This mindfulness leads to love, and then to the awareness of the presence of God or that of a Higher Being. Love is the first step towards spirituality.

The oneness of all life is one of the basic laws of Nature: that is, we are all inter-connected with one another. This universal moral principle holds the key to true and lasting freedom in living. Without that freedom, we are forever living in human bondage that inhibits further development of the wellness of the body, the mind, and the soul. Without this wellness alignment, there is no wellness wisdom.

An illustration

A pastor from Hong Kong was invited to give a sermon in China. A woman from the congregation asked the pastor if it was right to give money to get her son into an elite school. The pastor replied by saying: “Your son getting into that elite school would also imply depriving another child of that same opportunity you are seeking for your child.”

A year later, the pastor met the same woman, who told him that her son had got into that elite school but without using her kwanxi or connection. The pastor then said to her: “See, God is in control; if you would just let Him.”

Thinking question

If you were the woman with the money and the kwanxi, would you have done differently?

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Monday, December 21, 2020

Living in Balance and Harmony

 The TAO of Living in Balance and Harmony

The mind needs balance and harmony both to control the body and to seek guidance from the soul, which supervises the mind.

Balance and harmony in the soul is alignment and connection for self-healing of the body.

Alignment and realignment

The body, the mind, and the soul work together as a system of life energy for healing. The free flow or stagnation of this life-giving energy is dependent on the balance and harmony of the body, the mind, and the soul at each and every moment. It is this moment-to-moment alignment in the body, the mind, and the soul, as well as their alignment with one another, that creates your unique state of self-healing and self-help, which is a miracle in itself.

What is your current state of self-healing and self-help?

If you are living your life as if nothing is a miracle, most probably your body, mind, and soul are in misalignment with one another. You might feel your body is not healing, your mind is strangled with sadness and doomed to despair, and you life has little or no meaning, without a goal or purpose. On the other hand, if your current state of being is one of joy, hope, and purpose, you are living as if everything is a miracle because your body, mind, and soul are not only inter-connected, but also in perfect balance and harmony with one another.

Alignment or realignment is inter-connection of the body, the mind, and the soul to achieve balance and harmony for self-healing and self-help.

The miracle of self-healing is manifested in the spiritual wisdom of the soul that guides and inspires the mind, which controls the body living in the physical world.

Connection and reconnection

According to entropy, one of the laws of physics, anything left to itself will ultimately disintegrate, and fall apart.

According to John Donne, the famous English poet, “no man is an island, and every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.”

Essentially, everything in the universe is somehow and somewhat connected, just as man is connected with one another in a subtle way. The miracle of this connection is to provide balance and harmony to guarantee their existence and co-existence, that is, their alignment with one another.

Focusing on others rather than just on yourself illuminates your soul to see its necessity to express your empathy, generosity, gratitude, and loving-kindness to others. But the challenge not to do that is as great as your innate desire to seek spirituality. Therefore, simplicity in living may enhance your spirituality and increase your strength to overcome the challenge to seek spiritual wisdom.

With spiritual wisdom, you may believe in the miracle of self-healing. You will then see that all happenings in your life are somehow “connected” for an unfathomable and unimaginable purpose, and that you can turn any bad situation into an opportunity for self-healing and self-help. Believe in the miracle that you are connected with everyone you meet in your life, and that everyone can be either your teacher or your student. In other words, there is much for you to learn from any circumstance, as well as from one another. This is the miracle of alignment and connection.

The TAO

According to the TAO, not living in balance and harmony is not living for life:

“When there is abundance, there is lacking.
When there is craving, there is discontentment.
Striving for power to control and influence
every aspect of our lives
is the source of our suffering.

Obsessed with getting and keeping,
many of us never really live before we die.

Following the Way,
we must learn to let go.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 75)

Letting go is adapting and adjusting any imbalance and disharmony in your everyday life and living:

“Following the Way is like bending a bow:
one end is pulled up;
the other end is pulled down.
Excess and deficiency are balanced.

According to wisdom of the Way:
we reduce when there is excess;
we increase when there is deficiency.
Balance is thus created.

According to common wisdom:
we increase excess and deplete deficiency.
Imbalance is thus created.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 77)

But, given that there are too many attachments in life, letting go is not easy and it requires profound human wisdom:

“Stilling our thoughts,
our needs become few.
Following our thoughts,
our distractions become more,
and thus living in chaos.

Enlightenment is our true nature.
Meditation helps us find the origin,
and thus ending our suffering.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 52)

Attachments to the world are only distractions that lead to detours, causing imbalance and disharmony along the journey:

“The Way is easy,
yet people prefer distracting detours.
Beware when things are out of balance.
Remain centered within the Creator.
                
Distractions are many,
in the form of riches and luxuries.
They allure us from the Way.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 53)

No-stress living is the way to attaining balance and harmony:

“So, we no longer argue with those who are cynical.
We stop looking for their approval.
We cease taking offense at their unbelief.
We just sow the seeds along the Way,
letting the Creator reap the harvest.

To be loved or rejected,
to gain or to lose,
to be approved or disapproved,
no longer matters to us,
when we know who we are
and who the Creator is.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 56)

According to the TAO, living in balance and harmony is all about “spontaneity" which is the understanding of the nature of all things.  

According to the TAO, spontaneity is “doing without over-doing”—which essentially means “doing without consciously anticipating the outcome.”

In the universe, there is an all-controlling force that monitors everything. You breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. You eat and you eliminate. You grow, mature, and die. Spontaneity is the natural built-in mechanism in each living organism. Spontaneity creates balance and harmony, expressed in the Yin and the Yang (the female and the male). Spontaneity is the ultimate understanding of the natural cycle of all things that are beyond human control: what goes up must also come down; success is followed by failure; life forever begets death:

“The Creator creates one.
One creates two.
Two creates three.
Three creates a myriad of things.

All have their original unity
in the duality of the Yin and the Yang,
the opposite life forces that harmonize.
We experience this harmonious process
in the rising and falling of our breaths.

People naturally avoid loss and seek gain.
But with all things along the Way,
there is no need to pick and choose.
There is no gain without loss.
There is no abundance without lack.
We do not know how and when
one gives way to the other.

So, we just remain in the center of things,
trusting the Creator, instead of ourselves.
This is the essence of the Way.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 42)

With spontaneity, we become babies again, living in perfect balance and harmony with everyone and everything:

“If we are in harmony with the Creator,
we are like newborn babies,
in natural harmony with all.
Our bones are soft, and our muscles are weak,
but our grip is strong and powerful.
Not knowing about sex,
we manifest sexual arousal.
Crying all day long,
we lose not our voice.
With constancy and harmony,
we accomplish all daily tasks
without growing tired.
                        
In natural harmony with the Creator,
we let all things come and go,
exerting no effort, showing no desire,
and expecting no result.
Natural harmony is experienced
only in the present moment,
when we see the natural laws of the Creator.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 55)

According to the TAO, living in the present moment is living in balance and harmony:

“We act without over-action.
We manage without interference.
We enjoy without attachment.

Effrontery is just
an opportunity for loving-kindness.
Great accomplishments are only
a combination of small steps.
Difficult tasks are no more than
a series of easy steps.

Therefore, we focus on the present moment,
doing what needs to be done,
without straining and stressing.

To end our suffering,
we focus on the present moment,
instead of our expected result.
So, we follow the natural laws of things.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 63)

Most importantly, spontaneity shows us the wisdom of the impermanence of all things—that is, nothing lasts despite all human efforts to make them continue:

“Strong winds come and go.
So do torrential rains.
Even heaven and earth cannot make them last forever.”
(Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 23)

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Solving Money Problems

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