"NO EGO NO STRESS" is a 135-page book by Stephen Lau on ancient human wisdom for stress relief. Specifically, it is about the TAO, which originates from the ancient Chinese sage Lao Tzu, the author of “Tao Te Ching”—one of the most translated works in world literature. “Tao Te Ching” is popular due to its profound and unconventional wisdom, which is both intriguing and controversial.
“NO EGO NO STRESS” is divided into four parts:
PART ONE The Introduction to Stress: How and where stress comes from; the damage and devastation of stress to human health.
PART TWO The Conventional Wisdom: The major life stressors come from career, money, relationship, adversity, and time. The conventional wisdom offers many strategies for stress relief, such as exercise, herbs, medications, meditation, and psychotherapies, among many others. The conventional wisdom may reduce stress levels, but it does not eradicate stress completely. The conventional wisdom only complements the ancient TAO wisdom for ultimate stress relief.
PART THREE The TAO Wisdom: This part not only explains what the TAO is all about, but also contains the complete translation in simple English of all the 81 short chapters of “Tao Te Ching.” Going through the whole script, interpreted and translated by the author, will enable you to understand the essentials of the TAO for stress-free contemporary living.
PART FOUR No Ego No Stress: Stress originates from the human mind: how it perceives and processes life experiences. What is stress to one individual may not be stress to another.
This part explains in detail how having no ego can eradicate stress related to career, relationship, money, adversity, and time.
”NO EGO NO STRESS” points out how the human ego is formed by the subconscious mind through its perceptions and interpretations of life experiences. The author relates to the famous saying by Descartes, the great French philosopher: “I think, therefore I am.” It is a myth or misconception that you are “who” and “what” you think; you are not the products of your thoughts. “Who” and “what” you think you have become is just your ego-self, erroneously created by your thinking mind.
The TAO focuses on the need of “emptying” and “reversing” the human mind in order to see “who” and “what” you truly are, without any attachment to your ego. According to Lao Tzu, the ego is unreal, because it is based on past memories and projections of those memories into the future as desires and expectations. The past is gone, and the future is yet to come; only the present is real. Therefore, the ego-self existing in the past or in the future is non-existing in the present, except in the mind. Without the ego, there is no need of protecting or sustaining it. Without fear and expectation, there is no need of judging, picking and choosing—they often result in making wrong choices and decisions, and thus creating stress. With no ego, there is no need of over-doing to fulfill the expectation. The problem with the conventional wisdom is that the mind focuses on the past or the future, but seldom stays in the present. Only when the mind stays in the present can it see things as they really are and not as what they should be. The TAO is essentially an understanding of the true nature of things: that everything in life follows a natural order and pattern, such as life begets death, success is followed by failure, what goes up must come down. The TAO is self-intuition to know the true self and others, as well as the world around.