When I was a little girl, sometimes I would wake at night and be absolutely certain that someone or something was in my room, in the dark, right behind me. I would get very still, hold my breath, and try not to move. I would often stay like that for a long time, until I finally fell back to sleep. It was always exhausting.
One night I did the unthinkable – I quickly turned to face whatever was there. And there was – nothing. The same thing happened a few more times. Each time when I would muster up the courage to turn, I faced nothing. Well, no, that’s not quite true. What I faced was my fear.
At the time I could not have articulated the truth of what I was learning, which was this: we create our own fears, and then we sit in them and allow them to dictate to us about what we will do, can do, must or must not do. We become slaves to the energy of fear. UNTIL – we turn to face them.
I read somewhere recently (I think in “Divine Politics”) that all fear is in the future. It’s based on what we expect or anticipate will happen. But sometimes the fear of the future is based upon fear of the past – of what happened before. What if it happens again? I realized that the idea of fear being in the future is SO true – it shifted so much! Even if rooted in the past, it’s sits in the future – where we haven’t come to yet!
So, here is a true statement: When you are truly present, there is neither past nor future. Therefore, there can be no fear. We fear what might happen, and we fear things because of what has happened. And it doesn’t even have to have happened to you – just hearing about something can set your mind on high alert. Oh! What if! So – being present is the place to be; it’s where you have true power.
In this world of ours there are many fear mongers, among them are the government, big pharma, big medicine, the media, social and otherwise. They use fear to control, to keep you in place, to keep you guessing, to keep you still. And what’s behind this? A LOT of money! “This will prevent you from getting sick.” “This will cure you.” “Don’t touch that remote – there’s more to come. Hurricanes, earthquakes, terrorists! Stay tuned!” And then the ads play. As I just wrote – a lot of money.
And let us not forget “They.” “They” – who “say” stuff, as in, “Well, they say…” “They” who will think badly of us, and print it on social media; “they” who decide what we should wear, look like, think, do, eat, drink, drive, read. It begins when we’re young. Do we have the right clothes? Toys? Breakfast cereal? Do we watch the right shows? Have the right computer? Phone? Do we comply with the latest rules?
All of these factions in our society are social bullies. They seem to have so much power, but they are empty inside. They do not have their own powers – they get it from their victims. They get it from us. The victim feeds the power of “they” by showing fear. The bully shouts, threatens, is bigger and meaner, and thus he can hurt you. But stand up to him, and suddenly he has no power, even if he physically knocks you down.
Our world is often dominated by the “One thought fits all” mentality. In this context, it is important always to take notice when only one opinion dominates in our media, injecting one brand of thought and labeling people as “other” if they disagree. Fear then takes over, and with it anger, separation and labeling. Opposing opinions are silenced. This has happened too often in history, and we ignore such instances at our own peril. Later down the road we are faced with the curse of having to live through the history we ignored.
One opinion raised above others, while closing the door on different or opposing ideas, can prove dangerous to any society. For example, what was done to Jews and dissidents in Europe in the late 1930’s and 1940’s, and to Blacks in this country over centuries, were all based on one narrow band of thought. Many scientists and social leaders who had different, but sound views were silenced and even persecuted. But they were eventually proved right, much to our dismay. This should be a lesson for us all. A different view is not always an attempt to conspire; sometimes it is a wise warning to look again, think again, reconsider. And always ask, regarding the “one, dominating thought” – who benefits?
Fear dominates our culture in so many ways. The Higher Voice of spirit and truth is always the voice of reason and wisdom. And that voice does not ever seek benefit – it seeks truth.
The necessary response to fear is courage. Courage is not about not being afraid – it’s about being afraid and still being willing to do whatever is necessary, whether it’s speaking out against something you believe is wrong, or standing up against bullies, be they in the school yard, the political arena, the media, or leaving an abusive spouse. Courage means acting with your convictions, despite the rising voices that would quell you. Courage is seen in those who do not only listen to the one dominant voice, but who are willing to take the time to seek broader ideas and truths, who will often later be proven to have greater insight than those who follow the dominating, strident voice of “Do this and don’t disagree!”
Many years ago I received a diagnosis that could fill one’s mind with dread. I went home, looked up a bunch of stuff, got myself very quiet, and made a decision. I decided I would not let something or someone decide my internal diagnosis. Someone could tell me what my body was doing, but I would decide what I was going to do. I am not a body; I use a body to communicate. So I was not going to let someone dictate that my body was the decision-maker.
It is more than six years since my diagnosis. I am still here, much to some people’s surprise. Will my body last forever? Let’s hope not! Of course my body will leave. But not now. And when it does, I will still remain.