Leaning into fear

In the Christian calendar, November 2nd is the day set aside for remembering those who have died in the past year, as well as members of our own families who have died.  The origins of this are probably found in the basic awareness of the approach of winter and the shortening of the days, which  speak to us of change and the impermanence of all things. It also can help us reflect on the other losses and disappointments which have occurred this last year and in our lives. Such moments can provoke fear and anxiety in us. As we are reminded here, one way of working with fear is not to turn away from it, but to turn towards and rest with the sensation it raises in the body.

Leaning into suffering does not mean losing our balance and getting lost in suffering. Because our usual stance in relating to suffering is leaning away from it, to turn and face suffering directly serves as a correction. As we lean in, we are inviting, moving toward what we habitually resist…leaning in can help us become aware and free in the midst of our experience.

Tara Brach, Radical Acceptance

2 thoughts on “Leaning into fear

  1. I know someone right now who is dealing with the loss of her mother…tragically five months ago…I think this post would help her and I will pass it on. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Thank you for pointing me in this direction Diane, and Karl for the pertinent post – it has helped me indeed, and sounds very much like something my mother would have said! Her best friend emailed me recently saying of my mother, ‘She said it’s ok to feel pain, and what one needs to do is develop a robustness is how one bears pain. She was good at saying things that stay with one.”

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