Can our modern minds let go of fear?
by Mike Brannon, guitarist for the Texas based Synergy group and Zen Art Lighting designer at LightlinkLighting
How beautiful she is. Or he. We can’t tell by looking
As it’s a koi in the clear, shallow water before us, doing
What they do: seeking food, avoiding danger as best
They can and just being. Swimming, for it’s own sake,
Or so it ideally seems.
Were we to have that life, a life so simple. No pressure, no deadlines, no expectations, No judgement, no worries, just being in the moment. What would we do? Is there not value to all our collective complication, you might ask? Is there not value to the balance we so often lack? Is simplicity the answer, and if so, how to achieve it?
Maybe the answer lies in just being ok with it, with ourselves, to start with. Being at peace with the idea of not always doing and justifying, not always showing our best face and being ever goal-driven; not allowing ego to drive all we do and are. Because if we are truly honest, we are doing for money and ego.
Could we actually let go? Or rather, not do that? Would the world fall off its axis? It’s a choice, isn’t it? One we are maybe afraid to embrace, just as we’re afraid to let go of what we (think we) have—and are. If we only knew what we were allowing fear and ego to displace in our lives and keep us removed from, we’d gladly trade. What we resist, persists.
Make no mistake, there is no shortage of fear, for any of us—real or imagined. If only we could spend, burn, or eat it, it could pay its way and maybe even be more acceptable, like a black sheep we still love.
But we can’t and it is what eats us, because we allow it. Every moment of every day, whether we are even consciously thinking about it or not, fear is gnawing away at our very being and what’s left of our sense of inner peace and time here. It is eternal and insatiable and we’ve become its complicit host. More peace of mind, Fear? Why yes, don’t mind if I do. Mmhm.
Mind. We allow our mind and all its neuroses to dictate our relative sense of happiness, our reality. Whether we’re conscious of this or not, it seems next-to-impossible to turn off. Why is that? It’s maddening and no wonder both meditation practice and anti-depressant usage is at an all time high. Einstein is credited with saying “repeating an action and expecting different results is a definition of insanity.”
Is it possible that somewhere along the line, on some incomprehensible level, fear became a goal, an accepted ally, a personal mission statement? Why would that even be? We don’t have to be our own worst enemy, or anyone’s. We don’t have to compare anything about ourselves with anyone else. When we make it about that, we at once miss the point and lose ourselves, and through the looking glass we go, as any way back disappears into the mist.
If we were to once and for all, accept our inherent imperfections and see ourselves as we truly are: beautiful, unique, seeking, growing, learning, experiencing, joyous, eternal beings, we could finally love ourselves and breathe that profound sigh of relief we all so need, and let it all go. All need, all emptiness, all craving, all ego, all judgement, all pain and suffering. All. In their place: empathy, love, compassion, fearlessness, stillness, a smile.
Could we not just take a moment of quiet, this moment … and a few deep breaths, as if we have all the time in the world … and once again, ponder the Koi?
It’s never too late.