When fear arises, we can be mindful and sit beside our frightened personality. We can transform the feeling of separation by introducing a new degree of awareness, acceptance and empathy. Fear then becomes a teacher and the lesson will be well understood and integrated.
How would you describe your place in the universe?
We have to get it wrong, much of the time, to find out what works best. All part of the game.
Compassion is an expression of unconditional love, our natural spiritual connectedness. There's no room in that state of being for fear to exist.
Because we are caught in the belief that our inner state is at the mercy of external events, we usually try to manage stress by managing the world, to reduce the circumstances that we think are the cause of our stress. But this overlooks the crucial role that the mind plays in most stress reactions. In most cases it is not the situation itself that causes the stress but the way in which we perceive the situation. If I see the situation as a threat to what I want, to my sense of identity, to my expectations of the way things should be, then I may well make myself upset.
The fact that it is our perception of events that triggers our reactions suggests that we can have far more influence over our responses than we normally realize. By taking responsibility for our own inner processes we can put ourselves back in control, and so have a choice as to whether we upset ourselves over things that happen.
That does not mean that we should sit back and let the world walk over us. There may be many things we can do that will relieve the pressure we are under. What we do not want to do is make ourselves upset and possibly ill in the process. In fact we will probably respond with more insight, clear-headedness, better poise and more effectiveness, if our minds are not hampered by a response more appropriate to our evolutionary past. As you learn to work with yourself in this way, you are learning to deal with the source of all fear - the voice in your head that judges and interprets what it sees - and to leave the ego-mind behind. [From Transforming the Mind - free online book by Peter Shepherd]
Ignoring the healing of our wounds makes us unconsciously demand attention and caring from others. It makes us dependent on others in so many ways for our own sense of self. Not facing our fears keeps us from making meaningful and loving connections with others. Fear says we are separate and we need to be defensive. It says that we cannot trust others and let them in. Fear blocks us from loving. Fear and love cannot occupy the same space. Fear is rooted in the personality, love within the soul. Continues...
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