As part of talking myself down from my own perpetually rising ledge (lifelong work in progress) I am participating in a Fearless Challenge.
I’ve done this type of work before, but fears are endless, some shifting, some chronic, and any excuse to shine light on them is positive.
Spending just five minutes a day observing my own fears makes me at least feel like I’m doing something with the fallout from the not so kind and often confusing world outside myself.
I mean, what could be more schizophrenic than an Ivy League-educated African American president with family descended from slaves handing off leadership of a most impactful country in the world stage to someone whose campaign succeeded with help of an Orthodox Jewish man, while simultaneously being praised by the KKK?
A few insights from studying my own fears:
- My biggest fears cause a static hum like a poorly tuned radio station always running in the background that helps create lack of clarity. These are my fears of catastrophe in no particular order: nuclear annihilation, super quake in my region, vast destruction of sentient beings by mankind, suffering caused by white supremacists or anyone espousing ethnic superiority in positions of power.
- What all these catastrophic fears have in common is their occurrences are far beyond my control. So why do I cling to these fears?
- Despite the fact I have linked each fear in my list to evidence that makes them seem rational as opposed to phobias that are by dictionary definition “irrational,” (I do not agree and believe phobias too have a rational root) I am reminded when I study fears that I cannot and do not know everything. Complexity exists everywhere. Can I let go of the burden of this constant static? I sure would feel a lot better if I could.
- What helps me let go is to focus on where I do have control. Can I try not to harm any sentient being in my path? Yes. Can I try to stand up for anyone suffering thanks to the insecure superiority complex of another? Yes. Can I relocate away from a quake zone or at least accept living with the uncertainty? Maybe.
- One thing I see so far is that all my grandest fears are sprouted out of love for all that is life and aching for the disruption of that life force. So I can feel compassion for that part of me that feels the love. I have many more fears to study and am grateful for the moments I attempt to look them in the face, no matter the outcome.