Fear can be one of the most debilitating emotions that we deal with. And whether your fears are akin to what kind of toothpaste to buy based on the fluoride content, or relating more to the protection of your family in a scary neighborhood, all fears stem from one thing... LOVE. "Every love carries with it a fear and anguish—a fear of its perishing, and an anguish if it does" (Swedenborg, Marriage Love 371). And this principle holds true whether the love is rational or irrational, good or evil, central or peripheral. Now if we accept the premise that fear is not something that we can truly get rid of, because if there is no fear than there is no love, and if no love than there is no life, what can we do with fear that makes it more manageable or possibly even productive?
For today, let's just begin by looking at the result of our fears on a spectrum. On the one side fear can be paralyzing and debilitating. On the other side fear can be motivating and driving.
So for example, I think we have all gone through times when we've felt incapable of asking that cute girl or guy out on a date because we love the feeling of not being rejected. That is a silly example of being paralyzed by fear. An example for the other side is like soldier who is willing to put themselves in harms way because the fear of harm being done to their family and country ranks higher than the fear of losing their own life.
That's all for now. Next time I'll try to demonstrate how our fears actually help us to understand what is truly important to us. Any thoughts?