A Virus Called Fear

 

WHAT IS FEAR?

Fear is not simply anger. Nevertheless, similar to anger, it entails an inflation of the negative qualities of the object we fear and an inflation of “me.” Fear adds to anger the mental factor of distinguishing (recognition) that we cannot control or handle the situation. We then pay attention to what we fear and to ourselves in terms of that way of distinguishing. That way of distinguishing and paying attention may be accurate or inaccurate.

 

Fear is suffocative. Shutting the lungs, squeezes the air out, raises the heartbeat, gives us a sweat, all our six senses are highly alerted, specially hearing and eyesight, … but its accustomed. We are not born with it. Indeed it’s like a virus, once it is downloaded (learned), you will never get rid of it completely. There will always be traces in the corners of our mind (the place we would never look).  Breathing, breathing, breathing.

Fear is always accompanied by unawareness (ignorance, confusion) of some fact of reality – either not knowing it or knowing it in a manner that contradicts reality.

 

Emergency Methods for Dealing with Fear

  • Counting the cycles of breathing with eyes closed, taking as the cycle the in and out-breaths, and focusing on the sensation of the breath coming in, going down, the lower abdomen rising, then falling, and the breath going out.
  • Counting the cycles of breathing with eyes half-opened, loosely focused, looking down at the floor, taking as the cycle the out-breath, a pause, and the in-breath, with the same focus as above, and after a while, adding awareness of the sensation of our bottoms touching the chair or floor.
  • Reaffirming the motivation or goal of what we wish to achieve (becoming more calm) and why.
  • Imagining that the mind and energy come into focus like the lens of a camera.
  • Without counting the breath, focusing on the lower abdomen rising and falling while breathing and feeling that all the energies of the body are flowing harmoniously.

 

I think the ultimate fear is the fear of death and dying. And ultimate remedy is understanding and acceptance. Acceptance of impermanence.

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