We have all been there — fear has haunted all of us.
However, not all fears are the same. Some may save your life, such as the fear of seeing a car running into you, others are less immediate, like the fear of rejection or of the unknown. But the worst type of fear is the phobia — the irrational panic that paralyses your common sense.
The question is what can we do in this case?
The answer is very simple: face it.
From my personal experience, when I have had some phobia or obsession, the more I have tried to flee from the object of panic, the more I bumped into it. The universe indeed is not a blind force but rather a very creative one. It responds to our thoughts, emotions, feelings, etc.
This is the essence of quantum physics. That is why the creative matrix put me in such circumstances that forced me unwillingly to face the “danger”. But many times I faltered and shook.
The challenge was too hard for me. I said many times “not now” or “maybe later”. I needed peace and decided to bypass or cure the fear. For a while I seemed to have peace of mind. Alas only until the next challenge appeared! Then the whole process repeated again.
Have you recognized yourself in this picture? Have you been through such experiences? If you have, then you know very well somewhere deep inside you that you can’t cure fear by avoiding it or suppressing it. You have to face it bravely. And that’s something I have experienced too. Let me share my understanding and my personal experience with you.
Facing the fear
“One must rise by that by which one falls” and “The very poison that kills becomes the elixir of life when used by the wise” state the two main concepts of tantra (ancient spiritual silence). This juxtaposition is also present in the western philosophy.
As Freud wrote they are the two main energies dominating in us. One of them is the instinct for procreation, for sensual pleasure, and the other one is the instinct for survival. These two energies are very similar. They are both overwhelming and actually run the whole world.
That is why it is not easy to face the energy of the deep uprooted fear. Maybe you have stored it inside you for years like me, or you’ve always had that particular fear in which case it will take a bit longer. However, the good thing is, once you decide to face the fear you should stick firmly to your resolve. With time it will become easier and easier.
I have done it, so can you! Maybe there will be panic for a while, perspiration, sleepless nights or nightmares, but the most important thing is to keep to your objective. It is crucial that you formulate your objective as a positive statement in a present tense.
I’ll give you an example: my objective is “I am healthy.” I didn’t choose a resolve like “I have no fears” or “I am fearless.” There is a certain portion of fear that’s essential and even good. It’s like when you cross a street you are careful so that no car hits you.
Or when you walk alone at night in dangerous surroundings you should be very careful.
I am not talking about these healthy fears which help us protect ourselves from real objective dangers. I am talking about exaggerated and over generalized fears, such as is usually the fear of dogs, planes, accidents, relationships, people with authority, abuses, etc. In those cases we project our inner fear on the reality and manifest it, i.e. what we fear happens.
After all what does it take to face a fear? If we look closely at fear it’s an energy. A very powerful one. The ancient tantrics have come to realize that behind everyone and everything in this universe, in the center of each object, there’s greater energy, known as Shakti or potential.
And that Shakti is fantastic. It’s a fountain of everlasting bliss and a gate to transcendental experiences. The question is only how to release Shakti from the pull of matter? The tantrics and yogis believe the mind is a force, too. It has energy and a nucleus — a center or bindu.
And that bindu or nucleus has to be reached. In any yoga practice in which the mind becomes one-pointed or absolutely concentrated, the possibility of reaching the bindu arises. But yoga practices take years to work. They are very, very slow.
It may take you decades if not lifetimes to release the inner potential or Shakti. Fortunately, there are shortcuts.
One of these shortcuts is to create the fear to such an extent, so that your whole mind becomes fear. You become the fear.
Thus a state of one-pointedness is reached. The very thing you have tried to escape, to find a solution for, stands in front of you. The fear materializes itself. It jumps out of you. It’s not any longer stored somewhere in your body, like the navel or the stomach. You are able to see it face to face. Then you conquer it.
There is a beautiful example of this in the Hindu catalog of Gods—Kali. Known as the destroyer of time, the most ferocious and fattest of all Gods and Goddesses, she is wearing a skullmala (necklace) and holds a severed human head. She is also hipping with one of her feet on the lying Shiva, symbolizing the consciousness.
When all the negative forces, like fears and passions, are awakened comes the first manifestation of Shakti or the inner potential. The benign and graceful aspect of Shakti is Durga, literary “The invincible.”
Here comes the role of the Guru. Many people from the West as well as from the East are wondering why one should take someone for a Guru surrendering themselves to another human being. This is one of the reasons: the Guru element, or tattwa, is to make the transformation possible. Otherwise, if the bloody and ferocious Kali is not pacified, one’s mind may forever remain in the realm of the unconscious.
I suggest all of you to pray, discriminate suppression and expression, don’t ignore or bypass fears and passions whatever they may be but at the same time stay true to your resolve. That’s the nucleus of a will — the goal.
Mind you it is safer to have a Guru on your way to show you how to transform your personal limitations. In this way by the grace of the Lord and with the blessings of your Guru you may overcome fear.
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Apprentice Editor: Jen Weddle / Editor: Renée Picard
Photo: Flickr | Ash Patel