Fear

2 Sep

As I was growing up Grandfather would teach me what he called the litany of life. Things like: Truth has a way of repeating itself throughout history and contrary to the idea that history begins at breakfast, it actually started before you were born. The one that literally burned itself in my mind is the one on fear.

Fear is the Mind Killer

He taught me from a young age and part of the training was learning to tame and use the mind. This of course is one of the purposes of meditation. In the training series, when fear appears, we would repeat an incantation to help move their minds past the fear. The Litany goes as follows:

I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

Now this is a nice way to look fear in the face and to dissipate its effects when faced with a dangerous situation. It helps to focus the mind inward and to have courage. However, this incantation does not really get to the root of fear and how it arises…to get to that point you have to go much deeper.

Two Perspectives of Fear

When it comes to going beyond fear you can use two different methods. One is the method of hypnosis, which is offered in a lot of the self-help material these days. The other, which is very different, is the method of meditation.

The perspective of hypnosis, to a great degree, uses mind tricks for dealing with fear at a moment in time. Repeating “The Litany Against Fear” induces a hypnotic state, so as to allow fear to wash over you.  That lasts for a few seconds but it doesn’t necessarily get you beyond fear. It is useful in the moment, but the change is not everlasting, for that we must dig deeper.

From the perspective of meditation, to get beyond fear you have to go to a place where the mind simply has the ability to stay open–allowing anything to flow through it. Anything occurring in your outer environment does not close down that space within your mind. Fear is essentially a closing down of the space at the center of the mind and spirit or soul.

It is impossible to go beyond fear permanently by only having this trick or that trick that can help you for a few minutes. To get beyond fear, you essentially must change your internal landscape. So when fear attempts to grab hold of you, you reside in a place where it can’t.

Real Fear and Fake Fear

If fear arises it may be a real fear, such as I’m going to walk over a cliff, then you just step back. Or, if a car is moving toward you at a high speed, you must be motivated to move out of the way. But that’s not really the kind of inner fear I’m discussing.

It’s the kind of fear that eats away at your insides. Real fear is nothing more than heightened awareness. That is awareness of a real situation and the fear that arises to protect you.

It is important to recognize that most fear has nothing to do with reality. Most of the time people are afraid of things that will never happen to them. This is an effect of the mainstream media and news constantly bombarding the public with negative images. This puts people in a weakened state of fear and decreases the immune system of the body. Often your mind picks up these pictures and replays them, creating a story about them. This is not useful nor is it good for the body.

So to go beyond fear, one of the first steps is to recognize that fear which is truly helpful: It makes you more aware, in real situations, in real time. Inside your fear is something that says, “Wait a minute, I think we have to do something sensible and prudent here,” rather than running around like a chicken with your head cut off, or becoming paralyzed and ducking under a chair, hoping that everything will pass one day.

Next, to really go beyond fear, you must summon the courage to look at all the fears that are inside you. Fears arise from childhood experiences and from terrible events that have happened to you or that you witnessed.

When you find these fears you can use meditation to get to a place where you simply can move to the space of awareness. As you move into the space of awareness, you can then release what is not real. This is the path to finding a peace place inside. This is a destination that can be achieved through mediation and prayer.

I offer this because we are being hit continuously with fear mongering by both the media and the politicians in Washington. Things are being so overblown by both that it appears they are starting to tell us what to believe. It is time to take a step back and determine for ourself what is real and what is fake. We cannot allow these folks to control our thoughts.

Let the peace of truth calm your mind!

Ed

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8 Responses to “Fear”

  1. the warrioress September 2, 2014 at 9:49 pm #

    Amen on this, Ed. I get so tired of the constant fear preaching from the media news stations. I used to have such anxiety about the mark of the beast/666 etc. I finally realized I had to be as a little child and just trust God. Much of the anxiety left then He will prepare me for all..I just get tired; that’s my main issue now. Good post!

  2. the warrioress September 3, 2014 at 12:05 am #

    Just heard about the second beheading, Ed…im feeling anger, not fear. Am sick of these individuals and their fearmongering brutality. Surely, Jesus doesnt expect pacifism from us in response??? What do you think?

    • efchristi September 3, 2014 at 12:16 am #

      Our Creator is in charge. He knows why these things happen and when we see Him, maybe He will explain.

      I personally don’t think the United States should be the one to take a solitary stand. There are many Muslim nations in the area that need to stand up and take a stand. If they don’t try to end it, why should the rest of the world?

  3. the warrioress September 3, 2014 at 2:08 am #

    But it’s our men they’ve beheaded…its America they dare to threaten. We look weak and afraid. Seems we have to react or it sends a message of weakness.

    • efchristi September 3, 2014 at 9:33 am #

      It was an American reporter who hired himself out to six news agencies to send pictures and stories back. He was encamped with the ISIS group sending back photos to show how dangerous there were. He was not being protected by our people and the very ones that sent him there turned their backs.
      I don’t know about you, but I have a problem with someone who puts himself in harms way for money, then expects me to go rescue him when he gets into trouble.
      Think about all the films and pictures you see on the news, why would they be so close to the fighters if it wasn’t for making things look bad? Why is an american there in the first place when we have no troops over there? If anyone is to blame, it is the news media that sent him there.
      As for the country looking weak, look at who is saying that, are they offering any suggestions on what they would do? No, they are just criticizing the POTUS for not putting our kids in harms way. Is it a sign of weakness if we don’t react to stupidity on the medias part or should we just go ahead and start WW3 and bomb them? Not a pretty picture is it? There is no good strategy without putting boots on the ground and having spent 42 months in combat, I can tell you it was not fun and we lost a lot of souls.

  4. the warrioress September 5, 2014 at 9:56 pm #

    Back on topic…..

    Fear can be a gnawing thing that tries to eat at my insides and paralyze me when it hits hard and heavy. I have to make a decision to forcibly move my thoughts beyond it to a place of complete trust In God’s love for me. It may take a little bit of time, but I’ve been conditioned to do this thus far and it works for me. I always know that fear is a feeling that will not linger if I am open to allowing it to pass through and go.

    • efchristi September 5, 2014 at 11:24 pm #

      As you face these fears and realize they can not hurt you, you will find that you no longer have to force yourself to a ‘safe place’. You realize God has never let you down and He is always there to protect you. You have nothing to fear. The will of God will never take you to a place where the Glory of God will not protect you.

      That fact should give you comfort in knowing God’s love is never away from you. You have trust in Him, never go anywhere without it.

      Ed

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