Our ongoing relationship with fear

Fear is our first, and if we are not careful, our last love. It is our most enduring relationship. It never leaves our side. It tells us where to go, what to wear, what to say and what not to say. We surrender all other options to it. Before,  after and during most of our relationships we are concerned above all not with the other party but with what we fear he or she will do…. We are unavailable for any truly loving and fulfilling relationship so long as we are in a committed relationship with the most controlling part of our own mind – our fear. Our fear of what will happen and our fear of what will not.

Nearly everything we are afraid will happen is going to happen anyway, so what’s to fear? There is no secure or underlying ground, so we make ourselves safe only when we see and accept the way life is. Utterly spontaneous and impermanent. When it is time to laugh, we laugh. When it is time to weep, we weep. We are cheated of nothing in life except that from which we withhold ourselves by ego’s narrow bounds. These bounds were meant to break; indeed they must, if we ever hope to be whole again

Karen Maezen Miller, Hand Wash Cold: Care instructions for an ordinary life.

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