Loving my fear

Fear dominates, pervades, defines, controls my life.
I fear my fear.
I am as conscious of my fear, usually, as a fish is of water, and even perhaps unconscious of the currents in it.
I want to deny my fear. I want to escape it, and create a life where I do not feel it. So I have my life as it is now.
I do not fear what others fear. I have no fear of speaking in public, very personally.
I felt fear of cycling on wet ice yet went the Oundle run the second time.
I will prosper if I know my fear, am not dominated by it, heed its warnings.

I fear myself. I fear my own responses to how I react rather than others’ observed responses and my realistic expectations of them. It is the internal structure of illusion, inherited from my mother’s fear.

To say “I should listen to my fear” creates a false I, separate from my fear, which is less than whole I. But there are blocks in the flow of fear, and whole I has ways of evading consciousness of it. Yet fear dominates my life: I am practically agoraphobic.

I have just started reading Iain McGilchrist’s phenomenal “The Matter with Things”, on how the right brain and left brain produce different ways of acting in and perceiving the world. There is an unconscious mechanism which decides which hemisphere processes a particular stimulus or response, and still I will stick to trying to conceptualise one Whole I, an individual human being, for now.

I rarely feel instant fear, as my life goes now, and I did this morning, cycling downhill towards a bend on a wet road, when I braked to get round the bend and found the bicycle drifting towards the side of the road. I stopped, after, to compose myself. With just the chance of ice, and wet roads, I can be going too fast for safety. But that is a rare experience. That physical threat feels different from fear of other human beings.

My fear is like my shame, an overexposed photograph. Fearing everything, I do not know where I might fear less, and where bad experiences might reinforce my fear so that I trust even less.

My fear comes from my family’s, keeping ourselves to ourselves, and is the source of first my desire to be normal and conventional and not stand out, and then my retreat to my living room. Fear has created my desires, and I have achieved my desire. The competing desires to be seen, to achieve, to do good or produce value, have not found a way forward that the fear has not prevented.

Often, though not always, I judge myself far more harshly than others judge me. I am judging myself less. Fear is part of the complex, tangled web of feeling and response which I judged. The judgment paralysed me. Therefore- I must love my fear, as I must love all of me, for the good of the world.

What do I fear, and why? Beyond- humans! Everything! The World! I don’t know. So that is a question it would behove me to address.

And accept. This is what I fear. I have judged it, and made it more intractable. I will not attack it as irrational or counter-productive or wicked. Only contemplating it with Love will help.

2 thoughts on “Loving my fear

  1. I can hear you talking. And I fear that this post might have many comments along the lines of “You should do …” this, that and the other to deal with your fear, conquer it, subdue it and emerge into wholeness. Whatever that means. Since we are always moving and changing, fear is probably part of the reaction that has to constantly adjust to change.

    And you know, I wouldn’t change you for the world. Have a happy day.

    Liked by 1 person

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