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Love and Fear: the Dichotomy of Life

The dichotomy of life
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With the pandemic running wild all over the world, we've been living through difficult times. But these changing circumstances may lead us to reassess our lives, to consider - maybe for the first time in a long time - just who we are, really, as people in this world. I hope this article will help you to clarify your inner knowing about your identity and who you want to be, going forward.

There are two primary aspects to each person - the Human Being & the Human Animal. The spirit and the body. And the human exists as a combination of the two.

The human animal is our instincts, built into our genes. It's about survival and competition to survive. And it's about fear of not surviving, and fear in general of not doing well enough, of non-approval by others, of losing our friends and partner. Very often it is the basis of falsehoods, a barrier to truth.

The human spirit on the other hand is more subtle. It's our spark of God within us, which in practice is our feeling of connection with others. This manifests as caring, kindness, forgiveness, compassion, understanding - in short, this is our loving nature. It is our truth.

Our conditioning

We are conditioned by the many influences upon us - TV, social media, fashion, school teaching, upbringing, career training, etc - to have prejudices and fixed beliefs, sometimes that we're not even aware of and sometimes exclusive to a generation.

Our ego is based on the identity we adopt to achieve our primary goals, which are in effect, the meaning of our life. And we may have several of these and others from the past, and past lives, that are left in place because they were unresolved. And as I mentioned, each identity is also conditioned by the many influences upon us - our conditioning, our beliefs, those around us whom we admire and identify with. So much of this we take it for granted in daily life, and are unaware of when our ego switches from one way of being to another.

Much of the time, our choices are along the path of least resistance. What preserves our safety and comfort, the status quo. But if we want a better life than that, we can change what we choose. We can choose to stop compromising, to believe in ourselves and our values, to move forward with our lives guided by our own truth.

Purpose of life

I feel the purpose of life is to overcome the domination of our animal instincts - ego, jealousy, envy, greed, fear. Instead, to find and express our loving nature - caring, sharing and gratitude. And in so doing to connect intimately with universal consciousness. The path of Love.

Love is the source of universal truth, therefore the perfect guide in our lives, and we each have an unlimited supply within us because it is who we are. We are made by Love, we are made of Love, and we are made for Love.

This is all the dogma we need. In other words, none. Because it is simply natural - it’s not supernatural. The latter is interesting but you don’t have to believe in things you haven’t seen for yourself in order to have a spiritual philosophy of life.

I believe the things I’m saying here are universally applicable, no matter if you are religious, agnostic or atheist. The path of love applies in our family and relationships, at our workplace and community, as well as within each of us.

We all have the dark and light within us; what matters is which we choose to act on. That's what makes us who we are.

Your story may not have had a good beginning, but it is not who you are. That depends on what you do next - who you choose to be right now and moving forward. Indeed, we create our own destiny by our thoughts, words and deeds.

Where there is love, unity naturally exists; where there is fear, understanding and compassion disappear.

We all have a range of challenges in our lives, to a less or greater degree, to express our true selves and to master the transitions in life that we inevitably face. We all have talents, skills and positive attributes too, that can be developed. Hence the role of personal development and the reason for developing this website, Trans4mind. We all have instinctive fears (our animal nature) and inherent capacity for understanding and empathy (our spiritual nature), and these can be overcome or enhanced - hence spiritual development.

We live very often as conditioned human animals, rather than with our potential as a mindful spirit integrated with the human animal. The latter is a true human being.

What we need is a world where tolerance, fairness and kindness are the norm in all human relations. Based on understanding and compassion.

Moving forward

Human rights have to be based on a foundation of basic cultural change, otherwise such declarations are hot air and make no difference whatsoever to the greed, envy, fear and egotistical power games that dominate politics.

Indeed, this is the meaning of Karma: we create our own destiny by our thoughts, words and deeds, and by our willingness to learn from our mistakes, and then to develop psychologically and spiritually to be more and more our true selves.

There is a natural range of emotion, through which we rise or fall depending on our circumstances and our awareness. People who are dominated by the lower fearful emotions are dragging themselves and others down, while people powered more by love are moving toward the light, based on their motivation being primarily loving service.

So why do people have lower or higher emotional states?

People are a composite of their spiritual self (inner knowing, higher self, loving), their conditioning (education, upbringing, cultural influences), and their animal self (instincts, ego, jealousy, envy, greed, fear). Often people can be mindful of their spiritual self when alone, unthreatened, in nature, meditating, in church — or awakened from their conditioning when presented with convincing new ideas. Or alternatively, they can be lost within their animal self when a more negative identity takes over, when they’re under threat or when captivated by a controlling group consciousness that over-rides their personal responsibility, such as identification with a gang, an army, a company, a religion.

Compulsive desire for riches and control - or fear of selfishness being punished and of God's vengeance in Hell... these forces dominate many peoples' lives and can give no good outcome.

Rather than worrying and being introspective, I would suggest we put our attention outwards, and forgive, understand and care for others around us, and be thankful. That comes from our loving nature, which is powered by spirit, by God in effect.

The Eternal NOW

We are living in the Eternal NOW. This moment is different, from any before it. We can drop the past and move on, empowered by our loving heart.

God is a universal consciousness that creates in many dimensions. Each of us is one perspective of this consciousness. We are all the One, at one, as well as unique individuals. So God knows each of us as we do ourselves. How do we access this consciousness and share the understanding of God? We do this by opening our hearts, and let the truth emerge (in feelings rather than words) and only then using the mind to create a verbal understanding and connect with our personal knowledge-base. This is the way we access our inner knowing, a higher level form of intuition.

So the purpose of life is to overcome the domination of our animal instincts, to find and express our loving nature - caring, sharing and gratitude. And in so doing to connect intimately with God.

And politics needs to reform in the same way. A new awakened politics would consider primarily the interests of a normal person, particularly the vulnerable, and least of all the super-rich.

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Peter Shepherd
Peter Shepherd
Peter Shepherd is the founder and producer of this website. A transformational psychologist by background, he is author of 'Transforming the Mind' and 'Daring to be Yourself.' He is also developer and supervisor of The Insight Project. Learn more about Peter's life experience and his views on many subjects at his Biography Page. Read More Articles by Peter Shepherd.
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