Fear is the strongest emotion a human being can feel; it’s primal, and it’s often a teacher to you.
Fear helps direct your path and in that way, can be very productive. But when we live in fear, when we allow fear to rule our thoughts and our lives, our entire frequency drops to a very low level.
At this low level, our frequency aligns with other low-level vibrations in the Universe and that is – in my view – how we become depressed, sick, angry, and impoverished.
So, you don’t want to eliminate fear from your life. You want to master it.
In short bursts, it can arise from your intuition directing you where you need to go, or not go. How do you know when you’re striking the right balance? Fear is helpful when it happens in a flash, a few seconds of awareness. Fear is not helpful when you feel it for hours, days, weeks or months. In fact, many alternative healing paths (Chinese herbal medicine and Ayurveda for example) acknowledge that the root cause of many modern diseases, especially autoimmune diseases, is a sustained physical experience of fear. It imprints on you. It marks you. And it harms you.
The good news is that by overcoming fear, I believe you can heal yourself. In this post, I want to show you five strategies to release and surrender fear based on wisdom from a variety of spiritual traditions you may be familiar with. Almost every spiritual path and religion offers scripture, mantra, or prayer to help you overcome fear in your life.
FROM THE CHRISTIAN PATH:
In the Bible, Isaiah 41:10 offers this well known prayer: “‘Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” I love this passage because it not only commands us not to fear, but it also recommends that we avoid anxiety; that in knowing God is present to us at all times, and upholds us with his hand, we are safe, all is well, and we can find comfort in that protection.
FROM THE BUDDHIST PATH:
The following Buddhist quotes offer similar wisdom about fear and its ability to shape our path: “The whole secret of existence is to have no fear. You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger. If the problem can be solved why worry? If the problem cannot be solved worrying will do you no good.”
Fear, anger, and worry are all emotions that lower your frequency, but they are also harmful because they are fundamentally unproductive emotions. Anger and worry in particular do not help you solve problems or feel love. They are simply a spinning of your emotional wheels and in that way they drain the life force. And when you realize how you are worrying about things you absolutely cannot control…what’s the point? When we are in worry, fear, or anxiety, we are living in the future. And this means that we are missing everything happening right in front of us right now.
FROM THE VIKING PATH:
In the Viking Havamal, the Viking code of conduct based on Odin’s teachings, this proverb is offered: “The brave and generous have the best lives. They’re seldom sorry. The unwise man is always worried, fears favours to repay.” Here, fear is contrasted by bravery and generosity, which suggests that one path to surrendering fears is to face them and give openly to those around you.
FROM THE MUSLIM PATH:
In the Quran, the holy text of the Islamic faith, Allah reminds believers that they need not fear so long as they have faith and are generous of spirit: “Those who believe, and do deeds of righteousness, and establish regular prayers and regular charity, will have their reward with their Lord: on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.” [Qur’an Chater 2 Verse 277] Similar to the other paths, in Islam believers are reassured that their spiritual practice will protect them from fear.
FROM THE KABBALISTIC PATH:
In the Talmud, fear is seen as a necessary component of spiritual development that facilitates the death of the Ego: “Faith cannot manifest itself in a person without being accompanied by fear, for egoism bows only to fear.” Because humility is a central concept in Kabbalah, fear is seen as a productive emotion but again only briefly, insofar as it helps you come closer to God.
Today, many of us feel paralyzed by fear – fear of what will happen in our country, fear of what is happening more locally or even within our families and personal lives. Just for today I want to encourage you to set fear down, let it go, and recognize it for what it is: A tool in short spurts to bring you closer to your faith and help you identify dangers.
But sustained indulgence of fear may, in fact, only manifest the things you fear most in the first place. That cycle of fear manifesting fear is one in which many find themselves trapped.
Take a deep breath today, inhale love and exhale fear, and watch your physical health, your emotional health, and your spiritual practice improve. I wish for you fearlessness and joy.
May it be so.