Tuesday, January 26, 2016


Fear is underneath so much of human suffering—for that matter, the suffering of any living sentient being. Humans are the only beings on this planet (that we know of) who can be aware of their own awareness further develop mindfulness awareness so that they can learn not to fear fear! I guess I would restate my first sentence like this: Fearing fear is underneath so much of human suffering. We fear so many things. Anxiety of a form of fear. Many of the things we fear are things that are inevitable. Many things we fear are the same things millions of others fear. The feeling of fear is universally shared, regardless of the source of the fear. Fear will always be there! But it's just a feeling! It's not who we are. It's not the "final feeling." It comes and goes, just like all of the other guests that visit our "guest house." The way to begin to cease fearing fear is to simply welcome—bow to—fear when it arises. Try to drop the story line in our thinking and just focus on the raw emotional experience of fear. How does it feel? Become curious. Pay attention to the physiological responses that are happening in our bodies. What is our breathing like? How does our stomach feel? What's happening in the body? Breathe it in. Forgive the fear for being there. Forgive yourself for having fear. Be compassionate and gentle with yourself as you place your fearful mind in the loving, cradling arms of compassion.

The phrase I chose for my design today doesn't exactly say what I'm trying to express. "No fear" conveys the idea that we can actually get rid of fear, but we can't. It's part of being human. There are definitely things that scare us to which we can learn to respond differently. We can, to some extent, realize that we need not fear things over which we have no control, such as death. Every single living being has to die. Every one of us! We can learn to overcome fears of such things as flying in planes, particular animals or insects, and other things like that. Some people can even overcome the fear of public speaking! Public speaking, by the way, ranks very high on people's lists of their top fears (various studies have shown this). Anyway, fear is such a huge topic. I believe that allowing fear to just be when it does arise will help us far more than pushing it away. Maybe my phrase should have said, "No fear of fear."

On another note, a singer/songwriter I love named Abra Moore has a song entitled "No Fear." So there's that.


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