A gentleman in a discussion group asked, “Is fear ever helpful?”
Here are the comments I posted upon considering the question: When we are mindful, noticing our feelings of fear draws attention to ideas and limitations in our mindset. Becoming aware of what we fear, or what triggers feelings of fear within us, is the moment of choice. Only through self-awareness may we stop reacting out of old programs buried in our history.
Fear serves a functional purpose in the survival of humankind. Fear is a natural response to danger that may threaten our safety and our life. The fear response is valuable in relation to danger. However, some of our fear is useless. For example, the overwhelming fear some people have of public speaking. This manner of fear is not related to danger, and public speaking does not threaten survival. I’m sure you can think of many other examples of how the fear of failure or rejection can hinder our freedom. In our ancient development, rejection from the tribe was indeed a threat to our survival. Tribal bonds remain a powerful influence on our behavior.
It is my truth to admit that I have fear. It is my growth and progress to recognize that fear doesn’t have me. I’m sure you hear the difference between those two statements. In the act of mindfulness, I discover the beliefs that color and shape my entire perception of reality. It is my conclusion that physically my feelings of fear serve to ensure my survival. Fear is a biochemical and biomechanical reaction to danger. Emotionally, feelings of fear serve my awakening. Am I present with my feelings right now?
I share the comments Joshua and I posted in response to this question with you. However, I assure you that I do not think I have the answer. Joshua reminds me that all the answers to your questions arise from your inner-being. Others, like me, have our own ideas and beliefs that form our reality, but only you have the answers to your questions.
Thank you for hearing my thoughts on this topic. What do you believe? I would love to hear your thoughts on this question.