Rendezvous with Fear

It’s interesting how synchronicity works. One weekend, I raised a question to a Tibetan Buddhism scholar about transforming (fear) energy and within days, I had my very own experiential insight… (well, also interesting and refreshing how the Lama had defined sychronicity itself too, but that’s for another time, perhaps). I had recently become aware that my fear stemming sometimes from a single thought could cut me off from my energy within a moment. I would then feel weak and drained. Little wonder then that I was looking for a way, at least theoretically, to transcend, transmute or even transform this fear energy. The Lama presented a sophisticated idea and this idea had appealed to me, intellectually. The concept being to shift one’s focus from the fear object or thought to some other more desirable object or goal (one of the nine ways to raise your spirits, to put it simplistically). Soon enough though and even before I had had time to test it out, my brain had created an objection to this idea of swinging from one (scary, repulsive) object to another (desirable) object. So we were still chasing and escaping objects and dreams…One afternoon, I stood in the kitchen and in my memory now, I was peeling potatoes. And a fearful thought must have crossed my mind leading to a cramping feeling in my legs. And then it happened. I felt the sensation, asked it it’s name and acknowledged it. It looked back at me silently and made its exit gracefully. There I was, numb and ecstatic…Yes, I had done it! I had looked at my fear and I was no longer afraid of being afraid. I had looked it in the eye and greeted it like a suspecting stranger and that exchange had locked us both into an enticing acquaintance and a deep understanding. But being introverted and shy, I had kept it unto myself. Until today, when it was one of those days when my wonderfully wise Zen meditation teacher was having a difficult time trying to convince students about ‘fundamental feelings’ and how Zen meditation could help process complex memories, triggers and (yes, uncannily enough) relieve the fear of fear. I shared my experience and in my childlike enthusiasm, my grip over the language of my adopted country got a little shaky. My sharing was met with muted Dutch-style superlatives and interest. My teacher thanked me for sharing and gave me a big thumbs-up👍. And with this, I had not only shared the story of my profound moment but had also injected flagging spirits with some realism (and for just this once, it wasn’t scary ;-)) and confidence in the meditation practice. More importantly, it had renewed my commitment to my own Zen practice🙏

6 thoughts on “Rendezvous with Fear

  1. Thanks for sharing the experience! Definitely worth remembering to keep and eye on an acknowledge our thoughts. Welcome to wordpress and happy blogging!

    Liked by 1 person

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