What really scares us?
Thank you so much for these thoughts, Diana. They give me hope - for the future, for my sister and I to find a way to be totally at one with each other again ( though she is basically a pretty conservative person and did not like Trump himself, she approved of basically all that he did while in office. She reads OAN and other non broadcast news. And yet, thanks be to God, we agreed early on that we would not just disagree, but to try to explain our thoughts and beliefs to each other, and to truly listen to the other. She just sent me a link to a TED talk on compassionomics which I will read today. And I will share t N is with her, and know she will at least read it. A d pray that she might not just take it to heart with me, but will share it with others of her like- minded friends. God continue to bless you richly in fulfilling your calling!
Dear Diana, Thank you so much for sharing from your deep heart of emotions. Many people if not most are filled with some form of fear which is a mistrust of the other, no matter what side one is on. I have come up with a mantra: "Do not let your emotions, sabotage your mind!" And Pema Chodron, the Buddhist nun, basically writes, "To make a friend with "fear." Or face the fear head on, and look it in the eye. One of the most important practices we can do is to become comfortable with the uncomfortable and uncertainty of life which requires adaptation and flexibility. This practice allows one to grow in resilience from day to day and that is how a person not just survives but thrives. Ephesians 6: 11-14 states "...put on the whole armor of God, ..and then stand against the wiles of evil ... so that you may be able to withstand on that evil day; and having done everything , to stand firm. Stand therefore,.." The word "stand" is repeated three times! It means remain in place, be vigilant, do not run, be firm in the Lord! Courage does not mean a person is not afraid, but stands firm against the evil and will prevail in steadfast faith, works, and prayer in the "Fullness of Kairos or God's Time." Shalom, Diana!
So here I am again with a comment on my previous comment. A little nudge prompted my going back and rereading it with a sense that maybe I had not sent what was intended. And there it was, the missing “d”! The interesting thing is that if our hearts are troubled, they are trouble, as in sleepless nights. It is the primacy of love built into our biological systems that makes our hearts the primary organ of perception. And the discrepancies we face as in corrupt politicians are a sure instigator of disturbance to the peace and tranquillity of love.
To guard our hearts is exactly the solution you have presented. For even when fear shows up, we have the ability to return to the very sure foundation we have been given in grace.
It is the discipline of vigilance that brings us back to this inner source of truth and ultimately no matter what happens, love will prevail.
You always offer me insight, but this...Best blod post ever! Dianna
As usual I am amazed at your Willingness to put a voice to your fears.Your thoughts made me recall president Roosevelt's comment "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself!" I have learned that I can't save the world, but I can each day find ways to open my heart to others be it hugs, a phone call, orl giving a special treat! At 87, By doing such activities Helps to eliminate my fears!
It Is young people such as yourself That gives me hope For the future. I am grateful That I have you Sharing your wisdom With us!
"Perhaps what we are afraid of just needs to be held" -- reminds me of the Jung-inspired lesson in Ursula LeGuin's Earthsea Cycle. I don't know how to apply that, though, when what we have in mind is fellow citizens who adhere to the cult of the former president and who support a political party which has been called the most dangerous organization at work on Earth today.
I am afraid in particular of Christian nationalism, the movement that closely resembles the ideology of the people (the villains!) who create and run the post-USA country called Gilead, in Margaret Atwood's "A Handmaid's Tale." Whether there are any such dangerous faux-Christians in Virginia, I don't know. But there was a report of the increasing power of such a group, calling itself Christ Church, in Moscow, Idaho. That's not too far from a house of Benedictine nuns that I admire, the Monastery of St. Gertrude; and I hope those dear sisters have not felt any unwelcome pressure or ill-feeling from any of their neighbors.
Oh my goodness. I needed this tonight as I have felt sick about Virginia outcome…and I don’t even live in Virginia. I will re-read this and share with husband and friends because fear is huge. Your voice is much needed.
Thank you so much. I have been fearful and sad, and it really helped to know I'm not alone. Thank you for your wise words.
Yes, I think you are right to be considering moving out if your state, I assume to a blue state, you should be safe there..
Vigilance, Vigilance, Vigilance!!!
To not let our hearts be trouble and not be afraid is possible or Yeshua would not have instructed us to follow this advice. We are in a rapid acceleration of forces that will traumatize us all unless we absolutely refuse to engage. Stepping back and being the witness without allowing ourselves to be sucked into the spell of fear is within the range of our wills. It requires fierce determination to stand in Presence. The time for actually wearing the full armor of god is here now and without it, we are fighting a battle we cannot win.
The question of what value fear or what we should do about being very afraid has never been harder to answer. As a species we've never been more threatened and perhaps since the beginnings of the nuclear age we've never been more vulnerable. Yet a "true believer" like Youngkin doesn't make us any more vulnerable Not even Trump nor any of the European demagouges make us more vulnerable. Our demise lies in our suseptibility to fear. We are rats on a sinking ship. (Only in our case the ship sinks faster the more selfishly we behave). It is the experience of the ages gleaned from evolutionary evidence that those who adapt survive. Adherence to an ideology impairs adaptation unless of course the ideology supports change. Our trouble is in that few do. No change, no position, no virtue that arises as a response to fear will ever endure.
I needed to read this today. That election in Virgina, seemed to suggest a wave of darkness coming over the land. I find myself contemplating moving out of the United States, as I don't feel like I belong here any longer. I don't understand people any more than I did when I was young, which is a frustrating statement to make in public. But where do I go where people aren't fearful and reacting badly to their fear? There is no where to escape that, so I have to love despite fear or the fear based perspectives of others. There is no other way through it. Although I fear sitting in the dark at the end of the world, I guess if I am able to abide in love, then I am ok to sit there. Or I am trying to be.
Thank you Diana. It certainly resonates with me. Anxiety was very much my companion until more recent decades. I was reminded of psychiatrist Irvin Yalom in his 1986 book ‘Existential Psychotherapy’ where he seems to suggest that all anxiety is ultimately rooted in fear of death. Is it any accident that the polarization and demonization seems to have ramped up significantly with the appearance of Covid? It certainly rings true where I live here in Aotearoa (New Zealand). I’m now wondering whether our hating/fearing on one another is all a distraction. Blocking our own fear of the unspeakable, unnameable that you start your piece with – our own mortality.
I’m helped by Michael Leunig’s little poem ‘Love and Fear’. Here it is:
There are only two feelings.
Love and fear.
There are only two languages.
There are only two activities.
There are only two motives, two procedures,
Two frameworks, two results.
I really appreciated your message today. I am from Indiana though I was watching the election in Virginia closely. I was physically sick as it was apparent who would win. At some point last night I just decided to focus on all the people in your state who DID want to stand up for so many things that were admirable and true. In AA we learn to accept the things we can't change (the election), courage to change the things we can (our vote and our way of being in the world caring for the 'other') and the wisdom to know the difference. That wisdom can only come from God. I will be praying for you all that God will give you wisdom to continue caring even when it is hard. I have been praying this for the majority of voters in Indiana for years.
Fear, I once thought, was something invented only for me. First as a disabled child, then as the black sheep my family couldn't hear, later as the mother of three sons who fell into addiction, now as a woman who tries every day to see Christ in the other. Through it all I have found my fear is like water--a solvent like no other, able to transform good people into the creatures you described. The only way off the island is to get wet, but if you look to the horizon for that promised land, He comes and carries you through it. Not above it or around it, but through. And the arms are made of love.
Thank you for the inspired message. I know we as people have different ways of approaching the same mind set. Differences aren't necessarily bad. We should accept that. Cultures are different. The main thing we need to know is that there is one God that loves us. And wants us to respect that we are all blessed with different talents, and to love one another. Diana, thank you for the message.