Between fear and love you will find the living. Fear has many faces and most of those faces are in disguise. Fear can be deceptive so that we struggle to recognise or define it. That means we fail to challenge it when it sneaks up upon. Fear can sneak up and it can paralyse, erode, control and ultimately destroy us. Fear is the most lethal weapon and the most toxic poison known to man. It’s highly contagious and self destructive. Fear can be spread by word, suggestion, imagery, innuendo or intimidation.
Almost all destructive behavioural and emotional responses can be tracked back to fear when we peel away the layers of our feelings and actions. Fear is the core issue behind violence, jealousy, bigotry, anger, depression, greed, hatred, lies, insecurity or obsessive worry, just to name a few.
When fear is appropriate it is a vital, effective life saving response which is critical to self preservation. Staying alive and protecting ourselves from harm is our most primal and instinctual priority. Appropriate fear, will prevent and protect us from danger; it will instantly ignite super alertness and superhuman strength. This is commonly referred to as the fight or flight response. Most of us will have experienced this super state of reaction if we have been involved in a potential car accident. In something like a nanosecond we are capable of processing an extraordinary amount of information and physically manoeuvre the car to avoid the collision.
Appropriate fear is also an effective decision making factor. Most, if not all, of our choices are based on predicting pleasure or pain. We are predominately motivated by pleasure and pain, that is, gaining pleasure or avoiding pain. We all like to kid ourselves that we operate from intellect, and that we make decisions by using knowledge, logic and experience. If we just scratch the surface a little we will almost always find that our motivations are emotionally based. Pleasure is easy to comprehend; we choose and maintain our careers, relationships, homes, hobbies and possessions because they please us. Choices of pleasure may encompass comfort, self esteem, love, respect, acceptance, approval, security, safety and prosperity.
Decisions based on avoiding pain may include any or all of the above, but from the flip side. Avoiding pain is extremely motivating and many of our decisions and reactions have a fear base. Pain avoidance is what fear is. Fear of physical or emotional harm, poverty, abandonment, violence, humiliation, loneliness, disapproval, disease and ultimately – death.
It is vitally important to discern what appropriate and inappropriate fear is, as appropriate fear can and will protect us, and inappropriate fear can destroy us. Most of the time we don’t recognize it at all, so, it’s impossible to name it, let alone challenge it.
The human condition has a huge emotional range and can appear quite fluid in its ability to change; we can be carried away or bounced around in a little cesspool of negative influences one minute, and then find ourselves lifted up and flying high the next .
Emotions can be quite unpredictable, indefinable and often uncontrollable, and yet emotions can dominate, create or destroy us. Some people believe hate is the base emotion and love is the highest. Indifference is often considered to be the opposite of love, but it is my belief that both hate and indifference are by products of fear.
Fear Of Death
The ultimate fear must be fear of death; being inevitable, we really should make peace with this and find it within ourselves to accept it. When we place fear in the realm of death, then we must place love in the realm of life.
We are living anywhere between these polarities, and might view life as rhythms, vibrations and frequencies between polarities. We understand night and day, light and dark, coarse and fine, heavy and light, negative and positive, hate and love, thick and light and good and evil. When we consider all of life is energy, then we can place ourselves within the frequencies of these polarities.
When fear is positioned at the darkest side of the polarity, we can include all of fears associates; hate greed, jealousy, anger, violence and poverty etc. The ‘dark side’ is also represented by death, decay, destruction, war, evil and disease. Negative frequencies are coarse, slow or stagnant, heavy, thick, lethargic, black and isolated. The dark side is asleep, lifeless and baron. Likewise, love represents all that is light, alive, creative, healing, joyful, energising and fertile.
As energetic bodies, within an energetic realm, we synchronise with similar energies. This is really huge, and may be hard to get your head around, but it’s also very simple. Thoughts and emotions are energies, which align themselves with compatible energies.
The greatest minds, all religions, the sages and prophets and philosophers and Bob Dylan and John Lennon and every other person who ever had a quality thought, all said this:
Love Is The Answer
Love is light, Love is God, Love is the creative force, Love is freedom – because love aligns us with all that light represents. To be healthy, happy, creative, secure, energized, serene and loved requires saying in the light. Staying in the light obviously also means staying out of fear.
I have already explained appropriate fear, but I now wish to put that aside and expose inappropriate fear for what it really is. To me, fear is Satan; an evil, destructive, paralysing force. I would suspect that every atrocity ever carried out was done so, on the motivation of fear. What motivates violence, wars, murders and suicides or evil, anger, hatred or prejudices? Peel away the layers again, and you will keep coming back to the same core – fear.
Fear is imagination predicting the worst possible outcome. When the imagination is engaged in repetition and emotion, it becomes a belief. Our beliefs determine our actions and as the old saying goes, what you conceive and believe, you will achieve. For right or wrong, good or bad, this is the creative force within us all.
We may feel sad and helpless when we look at the world, and many of the events taking place around us. We can become overwhelmed, to the point of depression, some feel rage and want to fight, and others feel paralysed and implode. There is so much injustice, poverty, waste, pollution and destruction. There are social and environmental issues and greedy, incompetent and spineless governments. Even when we bring ourselves away from the world stage, and just focus on our own little realities, we still find so much to analyse, consider, protect and fight for. Sure, we worry about aging, our health, finances, families and jobs. We worry about the quality and quantity of our food, pollution of our rivers and air, crime and the decline of communities. We argue that an intelligent and responsible person needs to be concerned about such things, and I agree; apathy and indifference or prancing around like Pollyanna in her “happy place” won’t make the world a better place.
There are problems, big and important problems, and those problems do need solutions. Problems are solved by intelligent application of ideas and actions, not by obsessive worry, and not by imagined fears. Herein lies the crux of the issue:
Worry and fear are impotent they serve no purpose, other than to use up creative intelligence, and destroy creative energies or attract destructive energies.
All problems have two possible applications and they are: Fix it or accept it.
The third and most popular application seems to be, ‘Worry about it until it disappears’ and this does not and will never work.
Worry, by the way, is fear’s little brother, the same genetic code if you like. Fear is big and powerful and jumps around like a trampolinist in our solar plexus, whereas worry is a silent and sneaky, tenacious little character, that you will hardly notice until the damage is done.
Fear and Love Symbology
Previously, I have symbolised fear and worry, by giving them identities, so, I will just bring them back now for another look. They are the Chattering Monkey, the Barking Dog and the Witch.
The chattering monkey symbolised the constant dialogue which goes on and on in our heads, when we are obsessively worrying. He engages us in a prolonged and exaggerated drama and reinforces our victim status. The chattering monkey, as a symbol for fear, demonstrates how we take a reasonably small fear, compare it to everything that ever happened before, and clump it all together and exaggerate it. Words like, nobody, everyone, always, never and forever, have this one problem sweeping across your past, present and future and gathering everyone and everything that ever hurt or offended us. The chattering monkey is a master at making big out of little.
The barking dog, I have now decided, is a toothless, barking dog. Dogs are trained to bark, they are hardly ever trained to bite. Barking dogs will scare you away or stop you in your tracks by the implication that they may bite. We don’t even need to see the dog, it could be a miniature poodle for all we know, but if it barks we will give it power and control, and accept that we must back away. Symbolically, the barking dog is the reason we don’t do things that we do want to do or the reason we do things which we don’t want to do. Peer pressure can be a barking dog, shyness or insecurity, fear of being rejected or abandoned, are all barking dog fears.
The witch is a complete fabrication, she never existed at all. For some unknown reason, when we are insecure, scared or threatened in any way, be that real or imagined, we justify our fear by inventing a greater threat than the one at hand. I guess we feel humiliated, small, afraid, powerless and weak for not being able to conquer our fear or problem, so we somehow excuse, justify or forgive ourselves, by inventing a greater threat. The problem with the witch is that we convince ourselves and others, that she exists, and we actively involve ourselves in focusing all of our energies in dealing with her, just burning ourselves out and sabotaging our lives. Symbolically, jealousy can be a witch, imagining your partner is cheating on you when there is absolutely no reason other than your own insecurity, is how a relationship can be destroyed by a witch. Hearing a noise outside your window at night can also be a witch, as you freeze with fear and convince yourself it is a psycho rapist. Some people convince themselves that entire races of people, people they have never even met, are all criminals or terrorists – that’s a lot of witches!
The secret to controlling fear is in first exposing it for what it is. Too often, we focus on other people or the events themselves or else we convert fear into other emotions like self righteousness, anger, insecurity, greed or any number of deceptive responses.
If you are feeling despondent, indifferent, isolated, fatigued, depressed or any emotion that is dark, you need to name it and then claim it. You will be amazed at how many emotions mask fear, but once you can see it, you can begin to challenge or dismantle it.
The reason I have bought in the chattering monkey, the barking dog and the witch is to save you from hours of verbal ping pong. Long drawn out analytical dialogue will drive you crazy, and is really a little self indulgent and mostly unproductive. Imagined fears and exaggerated fears need to be stopped and dismissed, as soon as they are exposed. The subconscious mind grabs an image and all of the interpretation that that image represents. When you catch a fear you name it, you then ask yourself, is this fear real or is it a monkey, dog or a witch? By creating a habit of applying these images to fears, the mind will soon learn to challenge and stop the interplay or the indulgence.
White light is the minds symbol of all things great and creative. Light, is the source of life, it creates life and maintains life. White light is a symbolic interpretation of God and love. It represents purity and healing. It is viewed as the highest and finest vibration or frequency. Imagining white light within us, radiating out from us, and being connected to us, will instruct the mind to align us with love, life, healing and creation. By being still and visualizing white light, we are able to activate our own emotions to generate love and lightness. This again gets back to, what we think and feel, attracts us to what is compatible or similar.
The same is true for fear; consciously or unconsciously indulging in fearful thoughts and emotions will also align us with similar energies. Repetitious fear creates a negative belief system, and attracts that type of behaviour and those compatible energies.
It could be so simple to master this game of life, so easy to view life as a wonderful adventure, filled with extraordinary beauty and possibilities. There is so much good, infinite love, abundance and joy, if we choose to connect into it. Love and happiness are not just random acts or accidents which come along, sweep us up and then toss us out. Love and happiness are self generated and contagious; they align to everything within a similar frequency and will expand and grow.
I am talking here about making conscious decisions, to create and maintain thoughts and emotions, which are creative in nature. And no, it’s not always easy, and no, you won’t be able to control all things, all of the time. But, consider this, if you went back over your life and took an inventory of every worry and fear you ever had, and then tossed out every monkey, dog and witch, then, how many fears would be left? And if you dissected all the real fears, and noted the outcomes, how many were as bad as you imagined at the time? If you listed the really bad outcomes; the things which almost destroyed you and or dramatically changed you, then you might also wonder what of these events shaped the person you are today. The big question here of course, is that, if everything that went before made you who your are today, then how many regrets will you carry?
You might find as much as eighty percent of your life has been wasted on imagined dangers, and if this is so, then, imagine this, what if you had that eighty percent back again? What would you be capable of creating, being, experiencing or feeling if you used your useless worry and imagined fear energies, in creating and choosing thoughts, emotions and actions, what could life be?
It must be obvious that we do choose our thoughts, we can change them by will or we can allow them to rattle around in our heads unsupervised and out of control. It is also obvious that our emotions are reactions to those thoughts. How we react or respond is also a choice. We may be anywhere between fear and love at any given time – The choice is ours.
A Story About Buddha
There is a little story about Buddha which goes like this:
Buddha was famous for being able to maintain his serenity and it was said, that he could not be provoked. One man, decided that this could not be true, and so set out to prove that he could provoke Buddha. Day after day, he teased and taunted and tried to provoke Buddha to become angry or at least annoyed.
When Buddha failed to respond, he finally said to Buddha, “How can it be that you have not become angry or annoyed with me?”
Buddha replied “If someone offered you a gift, and you chose to not accept that gift, who would the gift belong to?”
Well, said the man, the gift would remain the property of the giver.
Exactly, said Buddha.