In the precept FEAR ( 5 ) I look at fear around cycling , here is a very complete examination of the subject from my friend who presented Hidden Anger.
5 Truths about Fear
1) The fear will never go away as long as I continue to grow.
2) The only way to get rid of the fear of doing something is to go out --and do it.
3) The only way to feel better about myself is to go out -- and do it.
4) Not only am I going to experience fear whenever I'm on unfamiliar territory, but so is everybody else
5) Pushing through fear is less frightening than living with the underlying fear that comes from a feeling of helplessness.
Litany Against Fear
from Dune by Frank Hobert
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 fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
1) Lack of faith in yourself and things around you.
2) Fear is a spook that keeps you in your zone of comfort and leaves you unable to take risks of any kind.
3) Fear is crippling,paralysing, self defeating, alienating, also creates anger and aggression.
Fear can be broken down into 3 levels. The first being the surface story. This level can be divided into two types: those that " happen" and those that require action. Here is a partial list of level 1 gears divided into these types.
Level 1 Fears
Those that "happen" Those requiring Action
Ageing Going back to school
Becoming disabled. Making decisions
Retirement. Changing careers
Being alone. Making friends
Children leaving home. Ending or beginning a relationship
Natural disasters Using the telephone
Loss of financial security Asserting oneself
Change. Losing weight
Dying Being interviewed
Losing a loved one. Public speaking
There is more you could add to the list. You wouldn't be alone if you either had some or all of the above. One of the insidious qualities of fear is that it tends to permeate many areas of our lives. e.g.: if you fear making new friends it stands to reason you may also fear parties, intimate relationships, applying for jobs and so.
All this will be clearer by a look at level 2 fears.
It is very different from level 1 . Level 2 fears are not situation orientated, they involve the ego.
Level 2. Fears
Rejection. Success. Failure. Disapproval Helplessness
Being conned. Loss of image. Being vulnerable.
These are to do with inner states of mind rather than exteriors. They reflect sense of self and your ability to handle the world. This explains why generalised fear takes place
e.g. If you are afraid of being rejected this fear will will affect almost every area of your life - friends, intimacy and close relationships, job interviews and so on. Rejection is rejection where-ever it is found. So you begin to protect yourself, and as a result, greatly limit yourself.
You begin to shut down and close out the world around you. Look over level 2 list again, and you will see how any one of these fears can greatly impact many areas of your life.
Level 3 gets down to the nitty-gritty of the issue: the biggest fear of them all - the one that keeps you really stuck.
Level 3 Fear
I CANT HANDLE IT!
"That's it ? That's the big deal? " you may ask. I know you're disappointed and wanted something much more dramatic than that. But the truth is that :
AT THE BOTTOM OF EVERYONE OF YOUR FEARS IS SIMPLY THE FEAR THAT YOU CANT HANDLE WHATEVER LIFE MAY BRING YOU.
Test it! Level 1 fears translate into: - e.g.
I can't handle illness
I can't handle getting old
I can't handle being alone
I can't handle losing him/her
I can't handle making a fool of myself
I can't handle making a mistake . etc.
The level 2 fears translate to:
I can't handle the responsibility of success
I can't handle failure
I can't handle rejection etc.
Turns Level 3 - simply " I can't handle it"
THE TRUTH IS
If you knew you could handle anything that came your way, what possibly would you have to fear?
THE ANSWER IS NOTHING
I'm sure your not jumping for joy right now, but believe me when I say this is a great piece of news. Now you stop calming your, mate, friends, boss or children.
All you have to do to diminish your fears
is to develop more trust in your ability
to handle whatever comes your way!
This point is critical - remind yourself that every time you feel fear it's simply because your not feeling good enough about yourself .
My belief is that some fear is instinctual and healthy and keeps us alert to trouble.
The rest, the stuff that holds us back from personal growth is inappropriate and destructive , perhaps to be blamed on our conditioning .
And finally a piece from J. Krishnamurti 's The Book of Life,
There Is Some Deeper Factor That Makes Us Depend
We know we depend- on our relationship with people or some idea or on a system of thought . Why?
Actually, I do not think dependence is the problem, I think there is some other deeper factor that makes us depend. And if we unravel that, then both dependence and the struggle for freedom will have very little significance; then all the problems which arise through dependence will wither away . So, what is the deeper issue ?
Is it that the mind abhors, fears, the idea of being alone? And does the mind know that state which it avoids ? So long as that loneliness is not really understood, felt, penetrated, dissolved-whatever word you would like to use- so long as that sense of loneliness remains, dependence is inevitable, and one can never be free; one can never find out for oneself that which is true, that which is religion.
Here is another piece by Mr. K : Contacting Fear
There is physical fear. You know, when you see a snake, a wild animal,
instinctively there is fear; that is normal, healthy, natural fear. It is not fear, it is a desire to protect oneself-that is normal. But the psychological protection of oneself - that is, the desire to be always certain - breeds fear. A mind that is seeking always to be certain is a dead mind, because there is no certainty in life, there is no permanency.
When you come directly into contact with fear, there is a response of the nerves and all the rest of it. Then, when the mind is no longer escaping through words or through activity of any kind, there is no division between the observer and the thing observed as fear. It is only the mind that is escaping that separates itself from fear. But when there is direct contact with fear, there is no observer , there is no entity that says , " I am afraid." So, the moment you are directly in contact with life, with anything, there is no division - it is this division that breeds competition, ambition , fear.
So what is important is not " how to be free of fear?" If you seek a way , a method, a system to be rid of fear, you will be everlastingly caught in fear. But if you understand fear - which can only take place when you come directly in contact with it, as you are in contact with hunger, as you are directly in contact when you are threatened with loosing your job - then you do something; only then will you find that all fear ceases - we mean all fear, not of this kind or that kind.
So if you have got this far well done! Freedom is just around the corner. PLG Tony .